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Politics Welfare & Other Social Programs--What Reforms Are Needed?

Discussion in 'Tilted Philosophy, Politics, and Economics' started by Chris Noyb, Oct 20, 2015.

  1. snowy

    snowy so kawaii Staff Member

    You cannot buy things like beer, lottery tickets, etc. with either WIC vouchers or SNAP. Period. People can buy them with their own money on the same transaction, though. SNAP won't even pay for most prepared foods; since it's all electronic now, purchases get divided into SNAP eligible and not-SNAP.
     
  2. ralphie250

    ralphie250 Fully Erect Donor

    Location:
    At work..
    here if you know the right people you can but all those things and you can cash in the total amount of the card for a small price. its all in how they code the things at the store
     
  3. Chris Noyb

    Chris Noyb Get in, buckle up, hang on, & don't criticize. Donor

    Location:
    Large City, TX
    Drug tests. The expense alone sounds cost prohibitive to me. Sure, you might nail some addicts and/or people who are frequent users of "heavy" drugs, but you might also nail some folks who do a little toking once in a while.

    WIC cards. In Texas we have Lone Star cards (clever name, eh). Some "sin" items are prohibited, and yes some stores get around it by ringing up items incorrectly. In the neighbor"hood" where we live I see them used frequently. Some people are careful shoppers who make smart purchases to maximize their food dollars. Other people buy thing$ such as pre-cut chicken piece$, pre-mixed flavored drink$, name brand product$ that are convenient, etc. Unfortunately those products qualify as food.

    Ambition to work. In a previous post I mentioned people who claim that working results in a reduction in benefits. They can barely get by on welfare, or they can barely get by with a low-paying job and reduced benefits. Small wonder that some choose full welfare benefits. How to correct this? FIIK.
     
  4. ralphie250

    ralphie250 Fully Erect Donor

    Location:
    At work..
    the bad folks, fuck it up for the ones that really need it
     
  5. Baraka_Guru

    Baraka_Guru Möderätor Staff Member

    Location:
    Toronto
    The irony is that those who most deride the welfare state are those who are otherwise okay with America being a de facto plutocracy, where the über-wealthy eschew any sense of duty when it comes to social cohesion. The 1% live distinct from American society as a kind of noble class that uses their power for selfish ends, which only serves to worsen poverty and increase class conflict.

    Wealth disparity is increasing in America despite it already being similar to that in Russia and China. I have more than once described America as a First World country with Third World features.

    You can look at this objectively. Incomes are flat despite productivity and wealth increasing. The wealth virtually gets sucked up to the top so that you have a situation where the top 20% holds nearly 90% of the wealth.

    The GDP is growing but the median household income remains flat. The wealth goes somewhere.

    How to correct this? It requires a solution with many parts. Maybe look to an economy like Denmark's, which Forbes often ranks near or at the top for doing business. What's interesting is that Denmark's union membership is around 70%. In the U.S., it's 10%. In Denmark, university tuition is free. Students are also given monthly financial aid. In other words, they're paid to go to school. In the U.S., post-secondary education is prohibitive and usually results in massive debt loads. In Denmark, health care is free and high quality. In the U.S., it's unnecessarily expensive and subject to mandatory insurance.

    I could go on.... Or you could just listen to Bernie Sanders.

    EDIT:
    Also, not completely unrelated:
    Iceland sentences 26 bankers to a combined 74 years in prison
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2015
    • Like Like x 1
  6. martian

    martian Server Monkey Staff Member

    Location:
    Mars
    • Like Like x 2
  7. Plan9 FORMAT C:

    Location:
    This Island Earth
    The Noble Savage vibe is strong in this thread.

    /not even trolling
     
  8. Baraka_Guru

    Baraka_Guru Möderätor Staff Member

    Location:
    Toronto
    I'm not feeling it.
     
  9. snowy

    snowy so kawaii Staff Member

    WIC is even more limited in terms of what it covers. Hence why there are WIC stickers at the grocery store.

    Here's the list of what WIC pays for in Texas: Texas Department of State Health Services, Women, Infants and Children Program (WIC)

    Also, if you see fraud on a retailer's end, REPORT IT. Retailers have to apply to provide the EBT services. Additionally, all of the SNAP and TANF funds get loaded on to these cards together, so if a person has purchases that aren't eligible for SNAP, they may still use TANF to pay, but it's two transactions.
     
  10. Chris Noyb

    Chris Noyb Get in, buckle up, hang on, & don't criticize. Donor

    Location:
    Large City, TX
    It's not just the retailers. There are people who trade prohibited items, such as booze & cigarettes, for allowed items such as milk and bread, with a much higher value on the "sin" items. Back in the food stamps days people would buy FSs at .50 on the dollar. And yes, I've known people who sold their FS and traded in their food.
     
  11. Baraka_Guru

    Baraka_Guru Möderätor Staff Member

    Location:
    Toronto
    Regardless of any fraud, etc., there is this.

    Study: Food stamps do much more to fight poverty than we thought - Vox
     
    • Like Like x 3
  12. redux

    redux Very Tilted Donor

    Location:
    Foggy Bottom
    Another good article that identifies a significant part of the problem - converting social safety net programs into state block grants.

     
    • Like Like x 1