February 11, 2010
Food Stamps Are Not Welfare
Posted by Dave Blount at February 11, 2010 8:12 AM
With the help of the statist media, Big Government is making progress in its drive to corrode our culture to the point that dependence on coercively funded handouts is both socially acceptable and ubiquitous:
A decade ago, New York City officials were so reluctant to give out food stamps, they made people register one day and return the next just to get an application. The welfare commissioner said the program caused dependency and the poor were "better off" without it.
Now the city urges the needy to seek aid (in languages from Albanian to Yiddish). Neighborhood groups recruit clients at churches and grocery stores, with materials that all but proclaim a civic duty to apply — to "help New York farmers, grocers, and businesses." There is even a program on Rikers Island to enroll inmates leaving the jail.
The more parasites the government can enlist, the more people have a stake in the advance of socialism toward communism. Ideally, the welfare roles will expand to the point that the whole system collapses. In the circles that produced Barack Obama, this is extolled as the "Cloward-Piven strategy." It brought NYC to the brink of total collapse in the 70s, so why not try it again?
"Applying for food stamps is easier than ever," city posters say.
But our current rulers won't be content to bring down one city.
After a U-turn in the politics of poverty, food stamps, a program once scorned as "welfare," enjoys broad new support. Following deep cuts in the 1990s, Congress reversed course to expand eligibility, cut red tape and burnish the program's image, with a special effort to enroll the working poor. These changes, combined with soaring unemployment, have pushed enrollment to record highs, with one in eight Americans now getting aid.
Don't forget: food stamps are not welfare. Neither should you forget that socialism is not theft or slavery. What our rulers do want you to forget is that 1990s welfare reform was overwhelmingly successful at reducing government dependence and therefore poverty.
RINOs are on board with the campaign to reverse welfare reform, now that the era of Big Government being over is over:
"I've seen a remarkable shift," said Senator Richard G. Lugar, an Indiana Republican and prominent food stamp supporter. "People now see that it's necessary to have a strong food stamp program."
Eric Bost, W's food stamp administrator, drives home the Orwellian point:
I assure you, food stamps is not welfare.
Bob Dole, aka the "Tax Collector for the Welfare State," was also a major fan of food stamps.
Unsurprisingly the biggest "Republican" (at least, he was originally elected as one) supporter of food stamps is the nanny state totalitarian mayor of New York:
Since Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg took office eight years ago, the rolls have doubled, to 1.6 million people, with most of the increase coming in his second term after critics accused him of neglecting the poor.
He intensified outreach. He reduced paperwork. He hired a new welfare commissioner, Robert Doar, with orders to improve service for the working poor.
"If you're working, I want to help you, and that's how the mayor feels," Mr. Doar said.
As Doar indicates, the main objective now — after reducing the stigma of parasitism among anyone with vestigial remnants of morality — is to expand the program among people who have jobs and clearly don't need it. Rapid progress has been made in both respects, to the New York Times' unconcealed delight.
On a tip from Ianto.