Want to Know the Root of our “Welfare” Problem? It’s the Corrupt Idiots in Congress.

johnboehneridiotIt seems that every properly organized propaganda campaign or classic Disney film has a hero, a villain and a damsel in distress that only the dashing hero can save. In the fairy tale we’re about to discuss, the damsel in distress is America and only by defeating the evil “welfare queen,” can she be saved. This is an argument and stereotype that has been repeated over and over since Reagan’s 1976 presidential campaign by many (not all) conservatives and libertarians while they demand ever lower taxes for the richest among us.

The fact is, very few people actually want to be on welfare. Despite all the moaning and kvetching from people who say “I’m just gonna quit my job and get food stamps,” it doesn’t work that way and they know it. Most of the people on welfare are the elderly, disabled, or even working families who might work 40 hours a week but still don’t make enough to get by.

According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, only about 9 percent of recipients of entitlement funds aren’t members of the aforementioned categories. So why is there such a clamor from blowhard politicians, TV pundits and the people who mindlessly lap up their talking points to cut, or remove altogether, the social safety net?

Hint: it’s not because they’re concerned about the deficit, our debt or even instilling a work ethic. If Congress was actually worried about spending, it wouldn’t have authorized two wars on the credit card and continually demanded more defense spending, which is about twice the amount that’s put into “welfare” programs.

It’s also not because they’re “concerned” about fraud and people taking advantage of the welfare system. As my colleague Thomas Barr pointed out last month, we lose about $750 million per year to food stamp fraud. To put that into perspective, we lose right around the same amount every month & a half thanks to Apple’s tax-dodging strategies. I don’t see Washington rushing to rewrite the tax code or put in place specific penalties for multibillion-dollar corporations who take advantage of us in that way.

Of course there is fraud within the welfare system, just as there is evasion within the corporate tax system. The big difference is, many of the people who are considered to be “cheating” the welfare system are doing so out of desperate necessity — the same cannot be said for a single one of the corporations cheating the tax system. Either way, both situations could use some clearer penalties and better oversight, something our government has failed at miserably.

The biggest problem is the fact that Congress doesn’t want to create a jobs market where there’s plenty of opportunity, because that would allow workers to hold out for the best opportunities. As I’ve mentioned in a previous article, a good jobs market is not in the best interests of the billionaires bankrolling our elected officials in their reelection campaigns, or lobbying on Capitol Hill. The corruption is remarkable in its simplicity, especially considering how many people have yet to catch on.

Even if we cut every dime of food stamps, rental assistance and other welfare programs, it would not close the deficit. Why would they like to see this done? It’s simple and two-fold — more money for defense contractors and other special interests, and more struggling people forced to work for minimum wage, desperately trying to squeeze blood from a turnip to keep food in their mouths and a roof over their heads. As long as we keep electing idiots to Congress who legislate with their pocketbooks rather than with our best interests in mind, nothing will improve — in fact, you can be damn sure it will only get worse.

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  • Pelu Maad

    …and then there’s the “black” face of welfare?

    • PamB1

      Reagan had some smart writers. That old “welfare queens driving to get their checks in their Cadillacs”, sure put an indelible face on WHO it is who is on welfare.

      • Pelu Maad

        Oh you poor lost little GOP sucker.

      • General Motors?

    • Sidra Whitedove

      As a retired civil servant who use to work for the state’s welfare office, just want to dispel the myth of the “black face of welfare” – the majority of people on welfare are white!!

      • Landran

        The black community is only accountable for 12% of the population. If blacks controlled the majority of welfare, we would definitely have a problem.

      • Pelu Maad

        …we “would”?

      • Pelu Maad

        Righties perceive welfare as “black”…righties don’t give a damn about reality or truth. Have you heard their opinions of civil service workers…?

  • “CONGRESS…the smallest minds and the selfishest souls and the cowardliest hearts that God makes. Mark Twain, again !

  • I don’t generally agree with most of the articles written and posted here but this one contains true merit.

  • evenstevens

    Well said!

    I do wish our very good writers would refrain from qouting dollar amounts in social spending without doing the same for conservative interests in the same sentence. Better yet, keep it all in the format of percentages/ratios. I say this because I personally do run into voters who have no reasonable understanding of what anything over a million, and sometimes, over a thousand is. The numbers stick too well, and the comprehension is absent. Emotion, rather than understanding, is all they use to inform their judgments at the polls.

    • I do wish our good respondents would refrain from bashing voters about emotion and lack of comprehension when they should be bashing congress about emotionalism and lack of comprehension. Many polls are worded by expert lexicologists to evoke the response wanted by whomever paid for the poll. What is reasonable understanding? To me anything over a hundred-thousand equates to “Awholebunch”. To a nation it’s just a tiny drop in the bucket. Shouldn’t it be part of the job to make it understandable to the people as a whole? Aaaand that was your point. Mybad.

  • AL JONES

    I JUST KEEP TRYING TO MAKE PEOPLE SEE(in my own small way)THAT OUR ONLY “ONLY” WAY FORWARD IS TERM LIMITS…IT IS A HEAVY LIFT ,BUT OUR ONLY WAY OUT OF BEING CONTROLLED BY BIG BUSINESS…THEY LAUGH AT THE WING NUTS WHEN THEY TALK ABOUT THE WORLD ORDER.

    IT COMING TO A PLANET NEAR YOU..IT IS CALLED MULTI-NATIONALS
    TERM LIMITS-SEND THEM ALL BACK TO THE PRIVATE SECTOR
    PREZ ON DOWN

    • Term limits solve nothing, especially since a candidate has to sell his or her soul before going to Washington. Term limits will only increase the speed of the revolving door from Congress to cushy jobs as lobbyists or corporate insiders.

  • Why just a picture of Boehner? Nothing happens in Congress without bipartisan support from both corrupt corporate parties, which form the duopoly that is owned by the global imperialist elite.