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  1. #161
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    As a fiscal conservative, no amount of waste in gov't is beyond my concern.

    Whether its a million federally allocated dollars to make Chicagoans feel better about their car purchases, having a fighter jet built in eight different states (to maximize defense sector jobs), or waste in welfare, every little bit counts.

    I care just as much about farm subsidies and other forms of corporate welfare, but the conversation seems to have already been started nationally on that front.

    No caring about how much we're spending is what got us here.

    Just so you know Canada, Australia, The UK, and The Netherlands all have workfare programs. Might I also mention that they, Canada and Australia specifically have much more sensible immigration systems than our own.

    Where we stand, it is solely your opinion that a work requirement would be needlessly harmful to the undeserving. While there are many examples of workfare operating without hick ups.

  2. #162
    Senior Member cafe's Avatar
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    You can't even know how fast I'd get behind a program that allowed public and/or private community service and/or government work programs to improve infrastructure, etc to be accepted as workfare for able-bodied people. I think that would be great as long as it was waived for one custodial parent with pre-school aged children and/or ones with kids too young to look after themselves during the summer months or childcare for those children and made provisions for transportation. I'd be behind that all the way. I think I would take myself out to lunch to celebrate that kind of reform. Hell, I'd probably find a way to volunteer to help try to hook people up with places that needed workers or volunteer to transport people to and from their places of service.

    As far as middle class people getting food stamps, I don't see how the guidelines I've seen allow for that unless they have an elderly or disabled person in the household. Even then the rules are not all that generous. However, I would support assisting families in a way that meaningfully helped them make the transition from dependence to self-supporting. If you pull the rug out just as they are getting on their feet then they lose their job and have to wait a month or two to get help again, a lot of folks aren't going to take that risk twice. That hurts us all. And this is coming from someone who has successfully made the transition. It was hard as hell and it was scary and we were very, very lucky. We had a lot of advantages may others do not have.

    I don't think the idea of paying high taxes like in European countries is scary considering the ROI, in countries that do these things well. My family already pays around 30% of each paycheck for payroll and federal taxes, healthcare, and life and disability insurance. We still have copays for medical care and if my husband loses his job, the various types of insurance go away. Not to mention the number of families that have insurance but still go bankrupt due to a catastrophic illness or injury: there is nothing to keep that from happening to us, unless that's been covered under ACA.

    I'd rather have universal healthcare and a decent quality public safety net. It would be worth the extra 10% or so, both for our individual family and for our community. Right now, my family has sort of adopted a friend's family and we spend 7-10% of our gross income each week helping them with expenses, so I know we could manage paying that in taxes to support a good safety net in which that family would have better benefits and would no longer need us for that kind of thing. My family is at around 150% of the federal poverty line for our family size and we manage to do this. I would think folks making 400% of the federal poverty line and above for their family sizes would somehow eke out a life for themselves.

    Edit: Having come through the system to some degree, I can't even express how much like heaven it would have been to have had affordable, quality childcare when my children were little so I could get out of the house for any reason, including, if not especially, work. It would have felt wonderful. I tried working, but couldn't break even, so I stopped trying.
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  3. #163
    Emperor/Dictator kyuuei's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DiscoBiscuit View Post
    There is zero compromise on this issue from any of you.
    Because we're not talking about ALL entitlements in this thread. You seem to think they're all the same thing--and I am telling you they are not. You're saying "the programs" but we're talking about food stamps--a single program. A program that is working better than many of the others out there right now.

    There is little in the way of compromise because we're talking about an ingredient that is absolutely essential to life. Food is essential, there is no way of getting around that. And it is really hard to acknowledge that and then say, "but we're still stopping people from eating."

    Regardless of the fairly solid evidence that the programs have grown beyond any reasonable measure.
    Food stamps have?! 20 billion.. It is a sneeze in comparison to the national spending, debt, and other jazz. Cutting $4 billion from "$17,107,070,974,000" of one website's debt estimation is.. We won't feel that at all. It won't HELP. Cutting $4 billion from 20? That's a major hit. The people using it WILL feel it.

    I am willing to FIX it.. but not by taking the money out of it. At LEAST re-allocate that money into the program itself--hiring extra personnel and actually go through the steps the law already mandates. They're saying the program they're breaking is broken. No shit.

    The only responses I've heard to my arguments lack any sort of statistical relevance, only emotional appeals.
    I don't need to show you statistics to show you what I said above. Why bother having you read a bunch of numbers when common sense is very simple in this regard? People need food. You don't want fraud. The program that lacks the proper personnel to maintain itself has weak spots. It seems to me that suggesting more government employees to work around the clock on fixing this issue would be a much better resolve than just saying "Sucks to be them, everything else is getting cut so deal with it." Not having healthcare is a chronic, gradual degrade to the country... Not having food though? It is an instantaneous change in people.

    You start from a position that any less money for the program will forcibly starve people, like any reform will usher in wave after wave of starvation deaths.
    It won't. But to think no one is out there hanging by threads--like for example, our family--and to think that this program is not acting like a buffer zone between working class families suffering hard times and MORE, and more expensive, government aid is a bit naive. There's a lot people can live without when they have a stable supple of food. I'm trying to say that this program has a direct effect on people. Immediate effects. There are few programs that can boast the same measure.

    I'm all for reform--but as I said, cutting the money is not going to reform the plan. It'll just cut workers, which slows the program even more, which makes the whole thing more prone to fraud and mistakes, which makes it unstable, and before you know it a program that was feeding people is just guzzling money out of the government and wasting it.

    That didn't happen when we reformed the programs in 96 and things worked just fine (even better if your looking at the statistics of enrollees being lifted out of poverty, as the article above states). But now that Obama has killed the work requirements and grown the programs (aka grown the Democratic voter rolls) everyone here functions on the assumption that the world will end if there is any friggen reduction in funding.
    The world won't end. But it'll be the end of someone's ability to eat every single day without being scared of where their food will come from. Or someone's ability to eat decent, healthy food that fits their strict diets instead of eating what they can afford.

    I'm giving you my personal example because I'm showing you people don't get much as it stands already. Between the three of us, we get $6.60 a day. I don't know about you, but I don't know many families that feed their whole family on $200 a MONTH. That's probably a biweekly charge for most people. There is fraud, but outside of that the *majority* of people are not getting a ton of money already. Cutting it hurts. Every. Time.

    Your "someone please think of the poor" arguments are unconvincing.
    Probably because you aren't poor. Sorry, but honestly, that's just the way it is. If you aren't poor, you really don't have to think about the poor. It's a problem far removed from your lifestyle. Poor people don't live in nice neighborhoods, they don't invade your social spaces. So when I'm telling you, "No one is thinking about the real, daily lives drastically affected by this each and every time" and you're telling me "History shows no one cared when this was cut before" I'm calling bullshit. Poor people are great at adapting.. Happens all the time. We're ready for people to forget about us.

    That isn't going to stop me from disagreeing with the issue entirely. I can say I don't agree with spending, and prepare for them to give me a huge middle finger in my face anyways.

    If the only people who should have to reform their favored programs to make the country run better are your political opponents, you have no understanding of what running a Democratic Republic (or compromise) means.
    There are a ton of programs that need reform. But I still hold true to the point that if they cut money from Food stamps, they aren't going to use that money to Fix it. It just goes off the radar. You agree every post that it's broken and needs fixing. They can't do that without employees, and they lack personnel at $20 billion. They sure aren't going to get it fixed at $16 billion.

    Intuitively the think of the poor argument resonates with many on an emotional level. But thats all it is, and emotional argument, that doesn't address whether the poor might be better off if the programs ran more efficiently.
    It does. It absolutely does. If the program is leaking $16 billion out of our country, not feeding the same number of people, catching even LESS fraud, giving the people it is feeding less food, and cutting a significant chunk of the work force that's already pressed and back logged, I can guarantee you this does NOTHING to help the program. This will NOT make the program run more efficiently. Will it crash and burn? probably not. Will it cause massive deaths? No.

    Why would you purposefully take more pieces away from a machine you are already complaining about though? "Oh, this car sucks, the A/C doesn't work and the belts are making a noise. Let's take out the radio.." .. It doesn't make sense. Maybe if you took out the radio to pay for the A/C to get fixed, I would have something to agree with. The money isn't being stated to be allocated into enforcing the law though.

    This will be my last post on the subject, and maybe I'm expecting to much from those for whom this subject strikes close to home, but I expected a little more open mindedness.
    I am all ears if you explain to me where the money is going to go. As far as I can tell, it isn't going into fixing the bullshit that goes on in the system.. At least if the money stays there, the budget for SNAP can be re-adjusted to afford more employees that investigate circumstances. At least that creates jobs.

    I have a ton of ideas on how to reform this and other welfare programs. None of them require removing the budget, though. Your talk of government sponsored workforce is a great example--but you spend money for that too. That $4.1 billion could go towards something like food recycling. But it won't. It could go towards setting up viable daily work forces. We have them in Houston, but getting into them is impossible. Be there by 4:30am and hope that people don't push you to the back. I've been there and waited in line, and been pushed away or turned away because the work was outdoors and they assumed I wouldn't be able to do it because I was a white girl instead of a mexican dude. We could create more jobs. But. We won't. That money will disappear. I care where that money goes when it comes to food. It should go back into food.
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  4. #164
    Analytical Dreamer Coriolis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kyuuei View Post
    I don't need to show you statistics to show you what I said above. Why bother having you read a bunch of numbers when common sense is very simple in this regard? People need food. You don't want fraud. The program that lacks the proper personnel to maintain itself has weak spots. It seems to me that suggesting more government employees to work around the clock on fixing this issue would be a much better resolve than just saying "Sucks to be them, everything else is getting cut so deal with it." Not having healthcare is a chronic, gradual degrade to the country... Not having food though? It is an instantaneous change in people.
    This is not an emotional argument. It is an argument based on values, specifically (1) society's interest in ensuring everyone has at least the bare minimum to survive, and (2) the importance of efficiency and effectiveness. Obviously not everyone shares these values. Some do not care if their neighbors starve; others see no problem with waste or failure to meet goals. The best solutions are those that will promote both values. It is easy to fail to see these when one does not even try to look for them.
    I've been called a criminal, a terrorist, and a threat to the known universe. But everything you were told is a lie. The truth is, they've taken our freedom, our home, and our future. The time has come for all humanity to take a stand...

  5. #165
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    Welp we can always agree to disagree.

  6. #166
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DiscoBiscuit View Post
    As a fiscal conservative, no amount of waste in gov't is beyond my concern.

    Whether its a million federally allocated dollars to make Chicagoans feel better about their car purchases, having a fighter jet built in eight different states (to maximize defense sector jobs), or waste in welfare, every little bit counts.

    I care just as much about farm subsidies and other forms of corporate welfare, but the conversation seems to have already been started nationally on that front.

    No caring about how much we're spending is what got us here.
    Yes, but you can't do everything at the same time, even if you had no opposition. You have to have priorities. If you care about expenses so much, you should still be addressing the larger costs before the smaller ones.

    That being said, there are also more problems in the world than debt. It's a question of how much expense is worth resolving how much of some other problem.

    In summary, it appears to me that you are putting loyalty to a principle over cost-benefit analysis.
    Go to sleep, iguana.


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  7. #167
    Analytical Dreamer Coriolis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    Yes, but you can't do everything at the same time, even if you had no opposition. You have to have priorities. If you care about expenses so much, you should still be addressing the larger costs before the smallers ones.

    That being said, there are also more problems in the world than debt. It's a question of how much expense is worth resolving how much of some other problem.

    In summary, it appears to me that you are putting loyalty to a principle over cost-benefit analysis.
    Yes. It is amazing to me how self-proclaimed fiscal conservatives will attack responsible and effective cost-savings strategies for reasons that, upon closer inspection, are based in ideology. Now that is an emotional argument.
    I've been called a criminal, a terrorist, and a threat to the known universe. But everything you were told is a lie. The truth is, they've taken our freedom, our home, and our future. The time has come for all humanity to take a stand...

  8. #168
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    Yes, but you can't do everything at the same time, even if you had no opposition. You have to have priorities. If you care about expenses so much, you should still be addressing the larger costs before the smaller ones.

    That being said, there are also more problems in the world than debt. It's a question of how much expense is worth resolving how much of some other problem.

    In summary, it appears to me that you are putting loyalty to a principle over cost-benefit analysis.
    Well, Obama was elected to change things. We wanted action on the economy and jobs.

    We but we got healthcare bait an switched on us.

    Dodd-Frank has worsened the consolidation of financial institutions, and continued too big to fail, which lowers the cost of borrowing for the largest institutions continuing to give them an anti free market competitive advantage against smaller financial institutions.

    Inequality hasn't changed at all.

    On the stuff that matters we've gotten a big fat nothing burger. Fuck I voted for Obama in '08.

    The only things we've seen any movement on are partisan initiatives.

    We were kept from playing a role in authoring the ACA, the largest domestic policy change in at least a generation. That is why we don't cooperate now.

    I value policies that benefit the poor as much as you value policies that benefit the rich.

  9. #169
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DiscoBiscuit View Post
    Well, Obama was elected to change things. We wanted action on the economy and jobs.

    We but we got healthcare bait an switched on us.

    Dodd-Frank has worsened the consolidation of financial institutions, and continued too big to fail, which lowers the cost of borrowing for the largest institutions continuing to give them an anti free market competitive advantage against smaller financial institutions.

    Inequality hasn't changed at all.

    On the stuff that matters we've gotten a big fat nothing burger. Fuck I voted for Obama in '08.

    The only things we've seen any movement on are partisan initiatives.

    We were kept from playing a role in authoring the ACA, the largest domestic policy change in at least a generation. That is why we don't cooperate now.
    I beg your pardon, but what does any of this have to do with cutting food stamps?

    Quote Originally Posted by DiscoBiscuit View Post
    I value policies that benefit the poor as much as you value policies that benefit the rich.
    So, pretty much not at all? Because I already guessed that.
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  10. #170
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    I beg your pardon, but what does any of this have to do with cutting food stamps?



    So, pretty much not at all? Because I already guessed that.
    We are under no obligation to take the high road and be generous, when those who want to compromise have nothing but ill to say about us.

    A pox on your house, you get treated the way you treat others.

    Your attitude is about as diplomatic as pol pot. So while I can deal with those willing to accord respect all around, I'll shit on folks like you all day long.

    I have plenty of people on the left I love to discuss policy, politics with IRL (and people here), but such open contempt for Republicans poisons the well like what happened with the ACA.

    I'm explaining why things have gone the way they do. There are a good number of folks who are willing to listen to our side even though they may not agree. Others personal contempt for me and any like me prevents me from being diplomatic.

    I'm to the left of my party on abortion, immigration, the fact that we need a safety net, tax deductions and rates, foreign policy, drug policy, corporate welfare, environmental issues.

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