Monday, May 26, 2008

Why is Obama lying to seniors about Social Security?



5-26-2008




Am I missing something? I thought Barack was campaigning as the one who was going to "change" Washington. If he is going to "change" Washington, how about he start by changing his distastful trait , it's called "lying". At least half of Americans know that the Social Security lock box was busted open years ago, and all that remain is IOUs. We are a point in our country where the amount of contributors to the amount of recipients is at two to one. That means two contributors are paying into the system for one recipient of Social Security benefits. George Bush was harshly attacked a few years ago for actually trying to address the inevitable collapse of Social Security. Democrats decided to attack his possible solution of partial privativation of SS. Even with the criticism of Bush's plan, Democrats didn't present a plan of their own. Now the magic empty suit aka Barack Obama is spewing rhetoric of fear to seniors citizens about John McCain's plan to overhaul and try and save Social Security. I don't know how Barack Obama and his fellow liberals can sleep at night. Think of it this way. Social Security is going down like the Titanic did when it struck the iceberg many decades ago. In this case Democrat liberals don't want to be honest with seniors that Social Security is indeed sinking and drastic changes need to happen, Democrat liberals are openly lying to seniors telling them everything is just find and nothing needs to change. When Obama was in Oregon a week ago, he meet with senior citizens at a photo op. This is one of his quotes






So my question to the great savior of utter stupidity is simple. What is his plan to save Social Security without drastically increasing taxes and increasing the eligibility age? That question would be enough for Obama to start to go into massive stuttering due to a lack of an answer. Barack Obama is so lucky he doesn't have to debate the likes of me. Obama isn't an oracle of change, he is apart of the same problem. He's a typical Washington insider liberal. They are so good at criticizing other people's plans to fix problems, but they never seem to be able to produce a plan of their own. In this case Obama is no exception. The only plan Obama has is to use fear that John McCain is the evil Republican bogey man that is out to rob seniors of their social security. This is another Obama quote "We have to protect Social Security for future generations without pushing the burden onto seniors who have earned the right to retire in dignity," I guess the Harvard graduate doesn't realize that Social Security is a "supplemental" benefit to a senior's retirement not a replacement for it. Pandering obviously doesn't solve problems. A candidate of real "change" knows that.

47 Comments:

Blogger p. anthony allen said...

RB asks;"Am I missing something?"

You missed by a long shot!

Government spending will cause the collapse of Social Security. Politicians have been lying about the federal budget and Social Security for years!

When the Social Security Administration was formed, it's funding and budget was supposed to be separate from all other government budget spending. Problems arose when when the Social Security budget began lending excess surplus to the Treasury Department.

The major force in draining America's economic stability is the Iraq war. This war has is being fought on borrowed money, and thus will cost future generations much more than short term cost of fixing Social Security at the present.

RB asks;"What is his plan to save Social Security without drastically increasing taxes and increasing the eligibility age?"

I know it's gonna hurt Tyrone, but just follow the link...

http://www.barackobama.com/issues/socialsecurity/

6:12 PM  
Blogger conservative brother said...

P Allen "You missed by a long shot!"

On this I definitely hit a grandslam.

P Allen"Government spending will cause the collapse of Social Security. Politicians have been lying about the federal budget and Social Security for years!"

P Allen"I know it's gonna hurt Tyrone, but just follow the link...
http://www.barackobama.com/issues/socialsecurity/"

lol, Lets do this in order Allen. According to Obama's "plan", it doesn't do anything to actually save social security for example

1. Reform Corporate Bankruptcy Laws to Protect Workers and Retiree

That does nothing to address Social Security.

2. Require Full Disclosure of Company Pension Investments:

This also doesn't address social security

3. Eliminate Income Taxes for Seniors Making Less Than $50,000

This provision as well does NOT address social security

4.Create Automatic Workplace Pension

Yet another example of something that doesn't address saving social security

5.expand Retirement Savings Incentives for Working Families:

Once again, something that doesn't address saving or rehauling social security


5. Prevent Age Discrimination

I don't know how preventing age discrimination helps the government in fixing social security allen.

This is a JOKE of a plan, it does absolutely NOTHING to address FIXING SOCIAL SECURITY LOL. The only thing Obama's so called plan does is go after businesses and corporate America. Both of which has NOTHING to do with Social Security. You had to know I was going to actually read his plan Allen lol lol lol. So like I said earlier. Barack has no plan, and he is lying to seniors by not being honest that the current system is broken and can't be sustained. So I was dead on target. His "plan" goes being Marxism.

7:07 PM  
Blogger conservative brother said...

beyond being Marxist in nature

7:25 PM  
Blogger Pamela said...

I don't even think about social security being available at all when I retire. This is nothing but a political ploy to scare people into voting for them to supposedly solve a problem. In too many cases there is no clear plan presented. I don't even listen to people when they mention social security. When someone actually tried to do it no one wanted to pursue it. It will not be overhauled in my lifetime. If it is that will be major proof that miracles still happen today.

8:13 PM  
Blogger p. anthony allen said...

RB responds;"You had to know I was going to actually read his plan Allen lol lol lol."

Ah...Yeah..thats why I posted it...

I did say you would hurt, didn't I? The fact is NO politician has put forward a "workable", "viable", and a truly serious economically "sensible" plan to sure up Social Security for the future.

Bush proposed giving private companies (Hint, hint: Enron) billions of dollars from the working class to play with as the CEO's seen fit. The idea was totally rejected by the majority of "BOTH" political parties. (I wonder why???)

Government spending is the problem. That problem has been exacerbated by the Iraq war. I wonder when you all will see that "W" doesn't care about NO-ONE but his rich buddies.

More of RB's commie rhetoric; "His "plan" goes being Marxism".

Marxism??? Stretching it a bit, aren't you?

10:06 PM  
Blogger conservative brother said...

Pamela"I don't even think about social security being available at all when I retire. This is nothing but a political ploy to scare people into voting for them to supposedly solve a problem"

BINGO!! BINGO!! BINGO!! BINGO!!!

You nailed it with pamela with six words "SCARE PEOPLE INTO VOTING FOR THEM". Liberals have mastered "fear politics". No matter the situation, they can apply the fear factor.

Pamela"When someone actually tried to do it no one wanted to pursue it. It will not be overhauled in my lifetime. If it is that will be major proof that miracles still happen today."

I remember Pamela when Democrats were foaming at the mouth when Bush dared suggest trying to save the hallmark social program of their beloved FDR. When bush mentioned the word "privatize", their heads blew up. Liberals don't want individuals taking responsibility for their retirement, they want them to rely on government for the illusion of them doing it. As we are seeing like other failed or failing government programs, they can't even do that right. I'm sure they will get it right if they take over health care lol lol lol lol lol lol lol.

11:33 PM  
Blogger conservative brother said...

P Allen"I did say you would hurt, didn't I? The fact is NO politician has put forward a "workable", "viable", and a truly serious economically "sensible" plan to sure up Social Security for the future.
"

To a point you are correct. Economists have already validated Bush when he said that Social Security will be bankrupt in 15 or so years. The thing I don't get is why is it that Bush and en"llconservatives are sounding the alarm that social security is sinking, yet liberals saying that its just fine? How is giving people a false sense of security helping them allen?

P Allen" Government spending is the problem. That problem has been exacerbated by the Iraq war. I wonder when you all will see that "W" doesn't care about NO-ONE but his rich buddies."

Oh please Allen, Social Security has been in trouble way longer then since the beginning of the gulf war. Even Bill Clinton when he as president warned Americans that Social Security reform was needed urgently to save it. This isn't a problem that happened overnight and didn't escalate just five years ago Allen, nice attempt.

P Allen"Marxism??? Stretching it a bit, aren't you"

Every so called solution on his list directly and indirectly attacks capatilism and the free marks Allen. Its no strecth, its just fact. For example, that number four."Creating Automatic workplace pensions." Obama would use the government to FORCE private industry to create pensions for their employees. Thats just flat out wrong for the government to impose that kind of power on an employer. If the company wants to do it as a "benefit" thats fine, but the government has no role doing that. See the point Allen"

11:47 PM  
Blogger conservative brother said...

P Allen"
Bush proposed giving private companies (Hint, hint: Enron) billions of dollars from the working class to play with as the CEO's seen fit. The idea was totally rejected by the majority of "BOTH" political parties. (I wonder why???)"

I know you are going to tell me how this is related to Social Security right Allen? lol What was the money going to be used for Allen? As usual, you are leaving out a lot of information. Was the money used for contracts etc?

11:51 PM  
Blogger p. anthony allen said...

RB asks;"I know you are going to tell me how this is related to Social Security right Allen?"

HUH???? How are they related? You mean you didn't even pay attention to what your "republican" administration was trying to "pull" over on the American working class? I'll briefly explain...

Social Security is a US government program that provides benefits to retirees based on their own and their employers' contributions to the program while they were WORKING/WORKING CLASS.

Bush proposed that the funds generated by Social Security be placed under the control of private trust funds, or something like a giant 401k plan. A portion of the trust, (about a third of the Social Security revenues), will go into an account. Whats completely "stupid" about this idea, is that whats left will not be able to pay current benefits, thus, any interest must be used no sooner than the plan begins!!! Effectively, you're back to square one!!!

Working people don't normally take huge risk's when it comes to investing for the future. Typically the working class depends on savings, personal assets such as a home, a pension and SOCIAL SECURITY for retirement.

Privatizing means your money will play around in the markets, which by all standards is risky business.

2:00 AM  
Blogger JMK said...

Social Security was NOT set up as a pension program for those without pensions.

It was, upon its inception, announced by FDR as part of a "three legged stool" (the other two legs being personal savings and private sector pensions).

Of course, like most Liberals, those inthe FDR administration failed to understand human nature.

Pre-Social Security, America had one of the highest savings rates in the world, once the government began gobbling up more of people's incomes via FICA taxes, the savings rate plummetted.

There went one of "the three legs."

Many employers saw that as a chance to get out from under the burden of providing additional benefits in the form of pensions and they did this by either hiring more part-time and per diem (non-pensioned workers) OR simply splitting the cost of the pension between business and workers, raising full-time salaries 1/2 of the $X it cost to provide those pensions and putting the other 1/2 of $X back into the company.

The absolute PROOF that Social Security wasn't meant as a retirment pension was that when instituted, the average life expectancy for a U.S. male was 66 years, and just over 68 for a U.S. female - the retirement age was 65 for full benefits.

That parameter is critical to the survival of Social Security. As the life expectancy goes up, so MUST the retirement age.

Today the average life expectancy in the U.S. is 77.9 years, SO, according to the original parameters of Social Security, the age when an American can get full benefits SHOULD BE appx. 76.9 years....let's just round it off to lefe expectancy = 80 and the age for full SS benes should = 79.

AND it SHOULD'VE been rising along with life expectancy all along. If it had, there'd be no "solvency issues" surrounding it today.

There's NOTHING "cruel" about any of that. In fact, people are living, not only longer, but staying healthier and more vibrant far longer. In short, many of the oldsters CAN and SHOULD work.

The worst thing about Social Security is that it amounts to a very pernicious wealth transfer. A transfer of wealth from the poorest generations (those just starting out and making a life for themselves) TO the wealthiest generation (those who've bought and paid off their homes, with large amounts of equity built up)...but don't take my word for it, read about here in a USA Today article from last May;

"Tungare is part of the wealthiest generation in American history — a group of 67 million people 55 and older who are so affluent that the gap between them and younger people increasingly is making the USA a nation of haves and haves-much-less.

"The growing divide between the rich and poor in America is more generation gap than class conflict, according to a USA TODAY analysis of federal government data. The rich are getting richer, but what's received little attention is who these rich people are. Overwhelmingly, they're older folks...

"...Nearly all additional wealth created in the USA since 1989 has gone to people 55 and older, according to Federal Reserve data. Wealth has doubled since 1989 in households headed by older Americans.

Not so for younger Americans. Households headed by people in their 20s, 30s and 40s have barely kept up with inflation or have fallen behind since 1989. People 35 to 50 actually have lost wealth since 1989 after adjusting for inflation, Fed data show.
Older people have always been wealthier than younger ones. What's changed is the disparity between the generations. Old people have been racing ahead, helped by government retirement benefits. Young people are running in place, partly because they're delaying careers to get more education."


http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2007-05-20-cover-generation-wealth_N.htm

Another HUGE drain on Social Security is all the money paid via SSI to illegal aliens who are eligible once they reach retirment age.

In fact, EVERY one of the three candidates running (Clinton, Obama AND McCain) all supported the "Social Security Totalization" deal with Mexico, which would give Mexican workers full access to American Social Security benefits.

http://community.tri-cityherald.com/?q=node/144

11:51 AM  
Blogger Conservative Black Man in the ATL said...

"Working people don't normally take huge risk's when it comes to investing for the future. Typically the working class depends on savings, personal assets such as a home, a pension and SOCIAL SECURITY for retirement."


So basically you're saying that working people are too stupid to invest for themselves and need the government to take them by the hand? Just like they are too stupid to use a voting machine? Too stupid to get a free ride to get an ID to vote?

Do working people have 401k's or 403(b)'s? Just because you are a working person does not mean you are helpless. The liberal way is have the government provide basic necessities to everyone.

4:44 PM  
Blogger Pamela said...

The retirement age is going up. I do not remember when it was passed but it was passed long ago. The retirement age is staggered by when you were born. My retirement age is 67. Only God knows what the retirement age for the really young calculates to. Even at that the monies that people paid into the system MUST stay in the system instead of being spent for other things. Only a miracle will fix this mess.

9:56 PM  
Blogger JMK said...

"Are working people are too stupid to invest for themselves and need the government to take them by the hand? Just like they are too stupid to use a voting machine? Too stupid to get a free ride to get an ID to vote?

"Do working people have 401k's or 403(b)'s? Just because you are a working person does not mean you are helpless. The liberal way is have the government provide basic necessities to everyone." (Conservative Black Man in Atlanta/CBMA)
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100% right on the money.

I'm a "working person," I still work in the FDNY and I invest in commodities futures (an "acquired taste," that takes a good deal of pre-trade tracking and a penchant for risk), in fact, the floor of the NYMEX (the NY mercantile Exchange) is overwhelmingly populated by workingclass people from the outer bouroughs (Brooklyn and Queens)....unlike the NYSE, which is largely people by an army of Ivy Leaguers.

CBMA has it 100% right....working people don't need the government to get by.

10:13 PM  
Blogger p. anthony allen said...

Conservative black man says;"So basically you're saying that working people are too stupid to invest for themselves and need the government to take them by the hand? Just like they are too stupid to use a voting machine? Too stupid to get a free ride to get an ID to vote?"

Stupid people??? You're calling the American consumer STUPID???

Do stupid working people buy gas guzzling SUV's? Do stupid people spend an average of $2500 each December, $250 or more on February 14th, $250 or more October 31st, to satisfy the "wants" of their family and friends? Do stupid people spend $300 to $3000 bucks to spend a day at Disney Land or Cedar Point? Do stupid people spend $300 bucks or more to take their family to a "ball-game?"

Do stupid people own or buy "anything" that "DOES NOT" produce some sort of cash or return investment on what they've spent their working dollar on? SURE THEY DO!!!

The facts are that 66% of all retirees rely on social security to provide 50% or more of their income. One out of four retirees has Social Security as their only income. Fifty percent of Americans have $50,000 or less in savings for retirement.

The above are U.S. government figures. David Bach commissioned a study by Temple University of persons 21 to 60 years of age. He found that only 7% of those surveyed stated that they would be able to retire "comfortably" by age 60. (Ninety-three percent stupid Americans....)

To stupid to use a voting machine or get an ID to vote??? Hell, with what we've had in the White-house for the past 8 years, I'd say the majority who voted Bush are by far the most stupid!!!!

12:25 AM  
Blogger JMK said...

"We have to protect Social Security for future generations without pushing the burden onto seniors who have earned the right to retire in dignity,"
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These are the kind of vapid, ridiculous statements that Liberals always tend to traffic in.

NO ONE "earns the right" to retire or subsist at another's expense, because there is NO RIGHT to another's person's property in a free (private property/merket-oriented) society.

In FACT, such an idea clearly violates the 13th Amendment protections against involuntary servitude, as some citizens producing/working to provide benefit for certain others is, without question, involunatry servitude.

ONLY an owner can lay claim to and confiscate what another produces, but Americans are not "subjects"/property of their government, in fact, their government has been made serville to them, as "free sovereigns."

Slavery to or ownership BY the government is as much (if not more) of an abomination as was the individual chattel slavery that existed in this country until 1863 and STILL EXISTS in most of the contemporary world outside of the West.

11:25 AM  
Blogger Conservative Black Man in the ATL said...

If I'm not mistaken, Bush proposed just 10% of your account be invested and the other 90% kept under the current system.

2:05 PM  
Blogger conservative brother said...

Liberals do believe that individuals are too stupid to invest for their own retirement conservative black man. Of course they dare not have to gutts to just come out and say it. They will say instead that the stock market is "gambling". To them they want big government to take care of them from the cradle to grave, womb from the tomb.

jmk"Social Security was NOT set up as a pension program for those without pensions"

I bet the liberal members of congress won't be looking for social security when they retire or if they retire jmk. I would have loved to ask the seniors that were planted for Obama'a photo op how many of rely soley on social security to make ends meet. Actually the media should have asked them that question.

conservative black man "f I'm not mistaken, Bush proposed just 10% of your account be invested and the other 90% kept under the current system"

Liberals can't have the masses investing 10% of their own money conservative black, no no no no no. If the masses realize that they have the ability to think and provide for themselves, then what would be the need for liberalism?

7:42 PM  
Blogger conservative brother said...

pamela"Only God knows what the retirement age for the really young calculates to. Even at that the monies that people paid into the system MUST stay in the system instead of being spent for other things. Only a miracle will fix this mess"

Miracles do happen pamela. In the case of saving social security, I seriously doubt it as well. It's very disheartening that so many young people don't know the first thing about investing nor do they think about their retirement pamela. Awk them what a bank CD is, and they will more then likely say its a music CD that the bank is giving away.


Hey jmk, I have a theory on why idiots in congress are so hell bent on allowing illegals into our country and giving them citizenship. Since the payee to receiver ratio is almost even, could it be possible that congress want illegals to become legal as a way of infusing the system. If the money was going into an actual SS account, I would say my theory makes sense, however since the money collected through social security taxes is going into the general fund, I may be wrong. It's amazing in a pathetically sad way that our government is collecting our taxes that is suppose to targeted for one thing, yet they are spending it on something else, and the masses of country almost don't seem to care about the deception.

8:38 PM  
Blogger p. anthony allen said...

JMK says;"NO ONE "earns the right" to retire or subsist at another's expense, because there is NO RIGHT to another's person's property in a free (private property/merket-oriented) society."

No one? No wounded veterans? No orphaned children? No women with dependant children? No mentally or physically handicapped?

Thats your typical overly zealous capitalist ideals, where you have completely out of touch with "your own" humanity. Next, I bet you'll claim to be a Christian, Baptist or some other religious belief in order to qualify some sort of humanistic frame.

By attacking "liberals" JMK, you are effectively "barking up the wrong tree." Your beef is not with your fellow citizens, it's with the government. The government is the entity that uses your tax dollar for those "compassionate, charitable and benevolent" causes.

JMK states;"I'm a "working person," I still work in the FDNY and I invest in commodities futures (an "acquired taste," that takes a good deal of pre-trade tracking and a penchant for risk"

I'm gonna let you in on a "not" so well kept secret JMK.

While you waste you time complaining about those who depend on government, that same "government" allows you to "profit" from those government programs. (which by the way, is legal and totally socially acceptable!)

Let me ask you this. What better way is there to reap a return on your tax dollars the government pays out in domestic services and social programs? The answer is to provide goods and/or service's to those who receive government funds!

I too am a "working person" with more than 25 years with the Detroit Public School system. My brother and I own 3 apartment complexes in Detroit. Two of the buildings are senior citizen and assisted living homes. My brother also owns 15 houses in the city where the occupants pay a small percentage of the rent, and the government (Section 8) pays the remainder.

On a good year, with low maintenance cost's and barring any catastrophic incident's, I could earn double, even triple, what I earn from the school system.

Thus, I would never complain about "entitlements" because it allows many in our society the means to be "self-sufficient", (even though you would'nt call it that), and live with a decent level of comfort and dignity. (Plus, I don't do half bad by providing goods and service!)

11:22 PM  
Blogger Conservative Black Man in the ATL said...

Thus, I would never complain about "entitlements" because it allows many in our society the means to be "self-sufficient", (even though you would'nt call it that), and live with a decent level of comfort and dignity. (Plus, I don't do half bad by providing goods and service!)

Entitlements have created a society with a "false sense of entitlement." People are feel they are owed something just for their mere existence. Entitlements have destroyed the Black family. Fathers have been replaced by a government check. There are no incentives to get off entitlement programs and become self sufficient citizens. I have met people who have never filed a tax return and never intend on working.

That is what the liberals support and encourage. For them to get off entitlements and work would mean less money for their entitlement programs.

The Liberal Mind in America does not really know what poor is. I have personally seen and volunteered to help real poor in Africa, Southeast Asia and Latin America. Those people would see the typical "Welfare Queen" as very well off.

12:26 PM  
Blogger p. anthony allen said...

Conser. Black says; "Entitlements have destroyed the Black family. Fathers have been replaced by a government check. There are no incentives to get off entitlement programs and become self sufficient citizens."

So you also, the same as I do, blame the government for these social disasters. It was never "the will of the people" to force Black fathers from the home. Basically, the people are innocent when it comes to the onslaught and demise of the Black family! Unfortunately, to many Blacks fell prey to the stratagem and are now caught up, thus with no idea "why they are", "the way they are".

It also make's me wonder...what other things has the government done to destroy a class or race of people? Black Americans have never grown poppi or coca plants in their neighborhoods...hmmmm? There's about 1725 gun manufacturers in the U.S., not one of them owned by Blacks...hmmmmm?

Good post Conservative Black, I see you're finally beginning to get it!

6:51 PM  
Blogger JMK said...

""NO ONE "earns the right" to retire or subsist at another's expense, because there is NO RIGHT to another's person's property in a free (private property/merket-oriented) society." (JMK
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"No one? No wounded veterans? No orphaned children? No women with dependant children? No mentally or physically handicapped?" (PAA)
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My above statement is, as stated, undeniably correct.

What about private sector and public sector pensions, Veteran's benefits, not to mention those "Golden Parachutes" that so many CEO's get?

They are contracted out as part of an overall compensation package.

The military traditionally has paid poorly, but gives an array of benefits, from PX privileges, to free medical care for life, often somewhat more generous disability payments and free and reduced cost College via the GI Bill, as part of its overall compensation package.

Ditto for CEO's, with companies unable to deduct salaries over $1 million/year, they find themselves having to become "creative" in setting up packages that will attract the best candidates, thus stock options and "Golden Parachutes" are contracted as part of an executive's overall compensation package.

NONE of that has anything to do with what I stated above....Social Security was set up to exist at a very specific portion of the average American life expectancy - 65 y/o when the avg U.S. life expectancy was 66...which translated into appx 79 year at the current 80 years (79.9).

Likewise I'd have a lot LESS of a problem with most other social welfare programs IF they came with a structured contract - "WE (through our government) will provide this, so long as you (the recipient) do this, this and this," (ie. stay off drugs and alcohol, vigorously engage in both workfare programs and job training, and abstain from having children while on public assistance)....that would be a conract I could live with.

Even those section-8 grants should come with a contract - to receive THIS, you must do that...a simple quid pro quo.

11:43 AM  
Blogger p. anthony allen said...

JMK thinks;"My above statement is, as stated, undeniably correct."

If it's so correct, why complain? Unfortunately, (for you) welfare, social security, ADC, Medicare, Medicaid, veterans benefits "remain" a part of the social services provided by the government. All you and your conservative cohorts can do is complain...Hell, even if this programs "run dry", why would you care??

JMK says;"I'd have a lot LESS of a problem with most other social welfare programs IF they came with a structured contract - "WE (through our government) will provide this, so long as you (the recipient) do this, this and this," (ie. stay off drugs and alcohol, vigorously engage in both workfare programs and job training, and abstain from having children while on public assistance"

Hmmmmmm? That sounds familiar...

Alcohol and "many" prescribed drugs are legal. Workfare job training programs are always menial or manual labor intensive in nature.

Educating, or focusing on basic literacy or numeracy skills has never been the thrust of such programs. Hence, effectively what these programs do is create a low paid work force basically equivalent to "slave labor."

In no way do I claim to be a social scientist. Yet I do believe that creating such a work force would do more harm than good. We have already seen the perpetuating effects that welfare programs have on people in this country.

What happens is, generation after generation becomes "caught-up" in the system. This happens because the generation that follows it's parents generation, views their parents generation as how life is lived, and what society purports their lives to be. Thus, they follow whats perceived as "a life", and the way it's "supposed" to be. We are all aware of this, and that the welfare programs are perpetuated in this way.

The idea of "workfare" was initially brought on the national forefront by Ronald Reagan. Reagan (by the way, whom I had never trusted when it came to poor people and minorities)pushed this agenda as program for welfare recipients to become self-supporting. I never trusted this idea because as we all know, this country began to move away from a manufacturing and factory oriented, manual labor intensive industry, toward a more high-tech and skilled labor work force.

Don't think for one minute that a politician as savvy as Reagan did'nt know this. It is more than an "opinion" that Reagan was not a friend of the "middle-class" American. Reagan basically ignored the working class. It is my opinion that Reagan "despised" poor people but likened his tone somewhat if they were willing to work menial jobs for the rich.

Reagan believed that a standard, ready to use, and "disposable" underclass was necessary for an economic balance in America. By introducing workfare, you can now be assured of a "generational" workforce of low paid workers perpetuated by the same sort of program that enslaved so many Americans over the past decades!

So why didn't Reagan propose a program that would offer training in much needed and well paying fields, such as advanced computer training, bio-and/or animal sciences, electronics, big-business and entrepreneurial investment training, health and safety, fire fighting or even law or law enforcement? How about political science? I'm sure they would be at least a small percentage of welfare recipients that would be interested in a career in politics, elected or unelected!

The reasons for not training people in these fields are far from being what some might call a "conspiracy theory." It's a fact that all politicians are part of an elitist coalition of power supported by wealth. But the Reagan coalition took this ideal to a "whole nother level."

In 1971 Reagan introduced workfare in California as the Community Work Experience Program(CWEP). Under this "workfare" program, public agencies or organizations put people to work doing anything from cleaning a business owners home, to picking grapes in Napa County's premium (and rich) wine growing districts. The cost to these business....? ZERO!!!

When Reagan entered the white-house poverty exploded in the inner cities of America claiming children as its principal victims.
Reagan targeted programs such as AFDC, school lunches and subsidized housing-federal benefit programs for households with incomes of less than $10,000 a year. (ie..poor people!)

As for drugs and alcohol, the abuse problems don't just effect the poor... Go to YouTube and search "George Bush Drunk." There's one clip the shows "W" guzzlin' a Highball and slurrin' his way through an interview.

1:42 AM  
Blogger JMK said...

"welfare, social security, ADC, Medicare, Medicaid, veterans benefits "remain" a part of the social services provided by the government." (PAA)
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DO NOT lump Veteran's benefits (which ARE part of a contracted agreement) WITH welfare, Meidcaid, Medicare, and other such forms of public assistance, which are not and are wrongly given out willy-nilly.

As I said I don't want those (public assistance) programs dismantled...they keep the "useless eaters" on a veritable reservation, be they rural poor, urban poor or non-productive oldsters.

The problem is that there isn't (YET) a sensible contract to regulate the behaviors of such people. Yes, WORKFARE was a start and it was and remains a rousing success - BILLIONS of $$$ saved and many formerly dependent people re-introduced to the concept of work.

But we NEED more, much more and it could easily be done with the stroke of a pen.

What current public assistance programs do, is to inculcate a pathetic kind of dependence among all its recipients, as all ambition, all striving is stifled, by bureaucrats (case-workers) who often don't have the requisite skills to help anyone else learn any valuable skills!

You rightly claim that "It's a fact that all politicians are part of an elitist coalition of power supported by wealth," as though there's something wrong with that, when in FACT, that's exactly as it SHOULD BE...exactly how things must be, in order to work.

And it's WHY government CAN never be used as a tool for the working class and the poor, for to use it, you must first go through the gatekeepers (lobbysists, legislators, etc.) who represent the interests of particular special interests.

So, yes, while I share your view that Ronald Reagan was an exceptional political leader, precisely BECAUSE he was that rare "good man" in politics, I must admit and point out that he did none of those things you gave him credit him for doing.

Congress did ALL of that...and in fact, it was a Democratic Congres at that time, under the auspices of Tip O'Neill.

And homelessness and poverty exploded in the 1980s, almost exclusively because of the deinstitutionalization enacted in the mid to late 1970s, under Carter, via yet ANOTHER Democratic Congress!

Again, what we need and what we'll ultimately get (somewhere down the line) is a better, more formalized contract with the recipients of public assistance.

Training them for computer jobs and bio-research???

Hardly likely.

But workfare jobs that many of the semi-literate and uneducated can handle?

Absolutely yes.

Should there be some sort of testing program whereby the few literate and academically talented people among those groups (there are very few and most of those suffer from various drug problems and/or mental/emotional illnesses) be identified and given the opportunity to hone those unused skills?

Sure, but between you, me and the lamp-post, I wouldn't expect much benefit from such a program.

2:15 PM  
Blogger p. anthony allen said...

JMK says;"DO NOT lump Veteran's benefits (which ARE part of a contracted agreement) WITH welfare, Meidcaid, Medicare, and other such forms of public assistance, which are not and are wrongly given out willy-nilly."

Gee-whizzz... Contracted or not, the government still pays. Last time I checked the government uses your tax dollars to pay for anything they do! Hell, they spend it so fast they can't even collect interest on it....

JMK says;"So, yes, while I share your view that Ronald Reagan was an exceptional political leader, precisely BECAUSE he was that rare "good man" in politics, I must admit and point out that he did none of those things you gave him credit him for doing."

Share my view???

Exceptional leader???

Good man???

Not hardly, in my "OPINION"! In my opinion Reagan was detached from reality, oblivious to troubling and direct details, totally insensitive to real matters of the people, and at times appearing on the verge of senility. Many authors, reporters and scholars have wrote and spoke about the incompetence of the Reagan administration.

JMK says;"But workfare jobs that many of the semi-literate and uneducated can handle?"

Semi-literate and uneducated is not a human condition...it's a social condition. That's not to say that everyone can be a rocket scientist, just as everyone can't be a champion tri-athlete. Yet, any one with a "healthy" brain can learn.

Yours is the typical "Al Campanis" approach to a social problem. You assign a "lack of ability" label based on a perceived social status, and in turn "attempt" to make it out to be a human condition.

Nevertheless, time and time again, even the most extreme cases of those handicapped from birth, have proven naysayers (like yourself) wrong.

From Helen Keller to Stevie Wonder. From Joseph Merrick (The Elephant Man) to Stephen Hawking. These individuals have shown that even a physical handicap cant hold back success.

I would dare to say that in most case's of despair in the U.S., social forces play a huge role. It's causes are mainly government programs that perpetuate the dependence and promote a low social status(I believe INTENTIONALLY). And people like yourself that thrive on the beliefs that those who don't share your social and political beliefs are not "worthy" of what America has to offer.

JMK can you answer a question for me? I'd like your "honest" answer.

Do you believe that America needs a "permanent" under-class? A class of people who simply do menial labor, and require little to no education?

Honest answer....

12:35 AM  
Blogger JMK said...

"Contracted or not, the government still pays. Last time I checked the government uses your tax dollars to pay for anything they do!" (PAA)
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The problem ISN'T merely "government spending."

It's HOW the government spends the money.

Basically America's Founders bequeathed this nation a system based on privatem property (which includes the private ownership of business and industries) that greatly benefits those who are born brighter, more ambitious and have access to better educations, etc.

That's a GOOD system...a SOUND system, as it works, wherreas the Command Economy (the government run economy) doesn't.

The Constitution enumerates government spendin g on the Military ("to provide for the common defense") and the criminal justice system, courts, judges, etc ("to ensure domestic tranqility")...it DOES NOT enumerate social spending at all.

Veteran's benefits are contracted along with the requirements of those positions - putting yourself in harm's way in the defense of your country.

They're not unlike the special "disability benefits" many Muncipalities offer their police and firefighters - in NYC it's 3/4s of your salary tax free (free of federal, state and local taxes) until that person dies.

Such things are offered specifically to those who put their lives in jeopardy "in the service to their countries/communities."

A CONTRACTED benefit IS NOT an "entitlement."

As I noted earlier on, their is no such thing as an "entitlement" in a free society, as NO ONE has the right to live off the labor of others. A pensioner, whose pension was CONTRACTED as a provision of employment, is NOT "the same" as a welfare recipient. A judge or a cop working for a Municipality is NOT "living off the people" in the same way as is a welfare recipient.

In fact, a person living off the social security benefits they paid into all their lives is NOT at all the same as an SSI recipient who "can't work" due to "stress, anxiety or a bad back," at 25 years of age, let alone a welfare recipient.

Social security and unemployment benefits are paid for (and rightly so) by the recipients via EXTRA taxes taken out of their checks and a corresponding amount taken from their employer (a cost that is passed on to ALL of us, as consumers).

ALL government benefits SHOULD be contracted for, that is a quid pro quo be set forth - the government gets to control the behaviors of those dependent upon the state. That's neither controversial, nor cruel, in any way.
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"In my opinion Reagan was detached from reality, oblivious to troubling and direct details, totally insensitive to real matters of the people..." (PAA)
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I'm aware of your misguided opinion PAA, and I've shown where you were wrong.

As I correctly noted, "Reagan did none of those things you gave him credit him for doing.

"Congress did ALL of that...and in fact, it was a Democratic Congress at that time, under the auspices of Tip O'Neill.

"And homelessness and poverty exploded in the 1980s, almost exclusively because of the deinstitutionalization enacted in the mid to late 1970s, under Carter, via yet ANOTHER Democratic Congress!"
Sad but true.

Still is the Republican view that social spending be cut, while Military and criminal justice spending be increased a bad or pernicious one?

NOT at all!

In fact, it's a quintessentially American one. First it cuts the DEPENDANCY PROGRAMS that keep so many enslaved to the state and creates jobs in the military and law enforcement that often translate into very marketable skills that can be used later in life.

A soldier slogging through some fetid swamp in some foreign war, is FREE (self-responsible) in infinitely more ways than is a welfare recipient, who is a mere slave to the state.
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"Semi-literate and uneducated is not a human condition...it's a social condition." (PAA)
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Not true.

There IS ignorance (the ability to learn hindered by a lack of access to facts/information) and there is also stupidity (the inability to learn or process facts/information).

BOTH are in substantial supply (as high as 10% of the population, suffer one or the other). In fact stupidity is, far more, a leading cause of poverty, than ignorance.

Poverty is ENTIRELY rooted in behavior. A lack of impulse control, recklessness, irresponsibility and yes, stupidity, tend to lead to poverty. In fact, such traits make poverty all but inevitable. The good news is that stupidity (the inability to learn or process facts/information) accounts for less poverty than the other causes, probably somewhere around 80% other causes to 20% stupidity/inability.

That's a fact and I acknowledge that fact, while having a tremendous amount of compassion for the poor.

The military is a GREAT option for innately reckless, irresponsible and profligate people as it builds self-discipline and independence of thought and action.

For those who are illiterate due to the inability to process information correctly their SHOULD be some social programs, WITH a set contract that mandates certain behaviors - engaging in workfare, not having children while on public assistance, staying off drugs, etc. These people are NOT "free" in the sense of being self-responsible, which is what freedom IS, they are dependent upon the state and as such, it's hardly an inconveience that such people's behaviors be regulated and micromanaged by that state.
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"Nevertheless, time and time again, even the most extreme cases of those handicapped from birth, have proven naysayers (like yourself) wrong.

"From Helen Keller to Stevie Wonder. From Joseph Merrick (The Elephant Man) to Stephen Hawking. These individuals have shown that even a physical handicap cant hold back success." (PAA)
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Those examples PROVE MY POINT!

Even severely physically hadicapped people CAN be productive, so there is no excuse for fully fit people who are merely innately reckless, and irresponsible to be mired in poverty or dependancy.

Stephen J Hawking was never a "ward of the state." He developped ALS. The disease was discovered when he was 21 y/o.

He's forged a life through his own efforts....he should be a shining example to those who are mired in dependancy and despair via recklessness, impulsiveness and irresponsibility!

Helen Keller's story is NOT about government programs, she benefitted from instruction at a private insitutuion - the Perkins School for the Blind in Boston. Keller overcame both blindness and deafness, at a time when people with such disabilities were generally warehoused. Again, Helen Keller, like Hawking is an example of someone who overcame tremendous physical disabilities through the shear force of their own will. These are NOT stories of the "triumph of government help."

Joseph Merrick’s story is far sadder, but still it's NOT a story about either the NEED FOR, nor the TRIUMPH OF government programs.

At twelve his mother died and his father remarried, but his stepmother didn’t want anything to do with young Joseph. So, obliged to earn a living by selling goods on the street, Joseph Merrick was constantly harassed by local children, and tiring of his stepmother's harassment regarding his inability to bring home a profit, Merrick left home.

Twice ending up in the Leicester Union workhouse, Merrick was unemployable for most of his life. On August 29, 1884, he took a job as a sideshow attraction where he was treated decently and earned a considerable sum of money. At one point during his sideshow career, Merrick was exhibited in the back of an empty shop on Mile End Road in London now called the London Sari Centre, where he was seen by the physician Frederick Treves (later knighted). As Treves recalled decades later in his memoirs, he gave Merrick one of his business cards in the event that Merrick would be willing to submit to medical examination.

All three of these people are examples of the power of the human will, of “MIND over MATTER,” as it were, NONE are stories of how government assistance helps people live better lives! In fact, quite the reverse.

If such severely disabled people can overcome their disabilities through the shear force of their own wills, does that not say something about those otherwise “fit” people who languish in poverty, despair and dependence on government largesse, because of their own poor behavioral traits (impulsivity, recklessness, irresponsibility, etc.) and lack of will?

Does it not speak to the fact that government social programs actually stifle independence and creativity and the ability to overcome one’s innate conditions?

I think it does!

9:19 AM  
Blogger JMK said...

"Do you believe that America needs a "permanent" under-class? A class of people who simply do menial labor, and require little to no education?" (PAA)
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Whether we like it or not, we will ALWAYS have an underclass PAA. Unfortunately OURS (in America) is NOT consigned to menial labor, we use ILLEGAL immigrant labor to get that done. No, our own underclass lives off the backs of others, getting what amounts to a "guaranteed income," which is an afront to human dignity and a debasement of real FREEDOM (self-responsibility). Ironically enough it's also the urban poor (primariy minority) who get the most "help,"
and the most largesse, due to the ease of distribution within urban areas, as opposed to rural locales.

Moreover, no one's CONSIGNED at birth to the underclass. In any free society, in fact, in ANY market-based society, there is fluid movement between the economic classes.

As an example YOU gave above, of people overcoming their own handicaps, Stevie Wonder, blinded when too much oxygen entered his incubator (he was born premature) caused cataracts to grow behind each eye, was able to overcome HIS disability via an incredible musical talent.

Born poor, he rose to wealth and fame.

It's actually "easier" (if you could call it that) to rise between the economic classes via investment. That's what George Soros (born a Hungarian Jew, to a family stripped of all their possessions) and many other investors have done.

BUT, does a market-based economy NEED people to do all those low-paying "menial jobs?"

Yes it does.

Still, the market doesn't CAUSE poverty, the way the COMMAND ECONOMY always does, in fact, it helps alleviate it by providing more jobs over a wider economic spectrum.

The market-based economy or "free market" merely relies upon the bell curved distribution of talents and abilities.

Even IF everyone of us could learn (and most people perhaps 90% or more COULD) to become very successful investors, the fact is that ambition and the ability to delay gratification and all the myriad other traits that must be inculcated first, will NOT be inculcated by the vast majority of people.

Some will say, "It's too hard," others "It takes too long," and yet others, "There's no way of knowing that I'll benefit later from all this sacrifice now."

You can count on that bell curved spectrum of abilities with appx 20% of the people falling at least one standard deviation, or more ABOVE the mean or average on any measured ability, appx 60% falling womewhere WITHIN that vast middle or mean and another 20% falling one standard deviation, or more BELOW that mean or average on any given measured ability.

And while it's true that there is great diversity among the distribution of talents, for instance perhaps few who are greatly talented in music are also talented inventors, few talented inventors are probably talented in other areas, such as art, etc.

Within a market-based economy there are so many avenues to success that one doesn't have to be extremely gifted in any specific area to garner great success, merely being extremely talented in any ONE area can allow one to attain great success.

But we can always count on that bell curved distribution - 20% ABOVE - 60% in the middle - 20% BELOW, so whether some people are born poor and stay that way, while some others fall back into a position where they're forced into those "menial jobs," it doesn't matter. What matters is that (1) all those menial jobs need to get done and (2) there will always be people to fill them.

The market-based economy lets people rise and fall based on their own abilities, ambitions, etc. SOME people learn to self-discipline and the ability to delay gratification early on and greatly benefit from those traits down the road, OTHERS are more impulsive and irresponsible, at least earlier on (before they mature) and as they mature, they realize they've fallen behind others merely because they've had different traits that are treated very differently in a market-based world.

Socialism is predicated on the view that it's WRONG to value people solely or primarily on how much they produce and seeks to equalize people by TAKING from those who have "too much," and GIVING to those who have "too little."

In short, SOCIALISM is a "loser's philosophy." Read Nietzsche's The AntiChrist (preferably the one with the introduction by H. L. Mencken...an INCREDIBLY insightful book) for perhaps the best explanation of why that is.

Socialism's inability to understand the value of private property, private enterprise and why those who produce are the only rightful owners of the fruits of their own labors is why economic socialism has failed miserably EVERYWHERE its been tried.

9:57 AM  
Blogger p. anthony allen said...

As usual JMK, you go off into a self-absorbed, absurd, grandiose and overblown exaggeration, when asked for a SIMPLE opinion. Merrick's childhood, the London Sari Centre and Nietzsche's socialistic idea's is as important in this conversation as the price of tea in China....(please to take that last remark as an "cue" for a lesson in macroeconomics or a percentage of RMB revaluation)

"In my opinion Reagan was detached from reality, oblivious to troubling and direct details, totally insensitive to real matters of the people..." (PAA)

JMK says; "I'm aware of your misguided opinion PAA, and I've shown where you were wrong."

You can call my opinion misguided only because you believe differently. But you can't say that I'm "wrong" because you can't unequivocally "prove" I'm wrong!

I have an opinion because I lived through the Reagan years. I formed my opinions on what I read and saw, and the subsequent effects of his policies. Equally, you also have an "opinion", to which I disagree with. Neither you, nor I have ever sat down with Ronald Reagan (when he was alive), nor with anyone who was close enough to him to really know. Thus all you can do is have an OPINION and stick to it!

JMK gaffes;"As I correctly noted, "Reagan did none of those things you gave him credit him for doing."

You just stuck your foot in your mouth this time...

P. Anthony; "In 1971 Reagan introduced workfare in California as the Community Work Experience Program(CWEP)."

"Robert Carleson, who was Governor Reagan's welfare director in California, and who as Special Assistant to the President for Policy Development helped draft the Administration's current workfare proposals, maintains: "Anyone who is
capable of working should expect to earn their own welfare benefit."

-Heritage Foundation-
http://www.heritage.org/Research/labor/bg195.cfm

"In 1971, California Governor Ronald Reagan signed a welfare reform plan that required all able-bodied adult welfare recipients to earn their welfare payments in public service jobs. The plan, referred to as the Community Work Experience Program (CWEP), also
was implemented in Massachusetts and Utah."

-Can Education Reduce Welfare Rolls?, Stacy Margolis. September 26, 1997-

http://scholar.lib.vt.edu/theses/available/etd-2698-72053/unrestricted/etd.pdf

P. Anthony; "Reagan targeted programs such as AFDC, school lunches and subsidized housing-federal benefit programs for households with incomes of less than $10,000 a year"

and remember I followed it up with;

"In my opinion Reagan was detached from reality, oblivious to troubling and direct details, totally insensitive to real matters of the people, and at times appearing on the verge of senility."

Well, check out this article from 1981, mere months after Reagan took office...

http://www.nytimes.com/1981/09/26/politics/26REAG.html

From the article;

"The required amount of vegetables was also cut, and the department proposed that in some cases catsup and pickle relish be counted as a vegetable."

Reagan either was a cruel insensitive barbarian, or he was the out of touch buffoon I think he was!

BTW-Jimmy Carter had ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with none of the above!

JMK misleads (yet again!);""And homelessness and poverty exploded in the 1980s, almost exclusively because of the deinstitutionalization enacted in the mid to late 1970s, under Carter, via yet ANOTHER Democratic Congress!"
Sad but true."


Sad....BUT NOT TRUE!

"President John F. Kennedy's 1963 Community Mental Health Centers Act accelerated the trend toward deinstitutionalization with the establishment of a network of community mental health centers. That trend continued into the 1970s with the implementation of the Supplemental Security Income program in 1974. State governments helped accelerate deinstitutionalization, especially of elderly people. In the 1960s and 1970s, state and national policies championed the need for comprehensive community mental health care, though this ideal was slowly and only partially realized. " (read the entire report, btw-which includes citations )
http://www.minddisorders.com/Br-Del/Deinstitutionalization.html

Honestly, I never studied nor read much about the "causes and effects" of deinstitutionalization. Although I remember it's direct effects here in Michigan, when a "REPUBLICAN" governor (John Engler) opened the doors to several mental institutions here and literally put mentally ill patients out in the cold.
http://www.detnews.com/2003/specialreport/0307/22/a07-221792.htm

I don't normally call people "liars" on blog threads... I'm NOT going to start now...

Perhaps we should just forget about the facts, since you've already made up your mind...

2:11 AM  
Blogger JMK said...

WORKFARE?!

No one has EVER offered a rational criticism of workfare! In fact, even in NYC when Rudy Giuliani was in the midst of turning around a city that had imploded around the overwhelmed and star-crossed David Dinkins (over 2000 murders, his last three years in office, businesses leaving NYC in droves), Giuliani belatedly, that is well after both Thompson (WI) and Engler (MI) introduced workfare, the commissioner of NYC’s social welfare services exclaimed, “welfare rolls in NYC have dropped by a third and there’s no question that they can be trimmed even more!”

Indeed NYC’s welfare rolls weren’t trimmed of all that many people, the workfare requirements merely stopped the “double dipping” that many of the deadbeats indulged in.

FACT: The vast majority of welfare recipients are able bodied men and women who CAN work, but suffer from the self-inflicted ravages of alcoholism and drug abuse. Some of these folks have mental (low IQ) and emotional problems, but the majority are just reckless, irresponsible people who indulge in illicit drugs and abuse alcohol and eschew good hard work.

FACT:America’s WORKFARE and other welfare reforms didn’t go far enough! They mostly reduced the rolls by making it harder for people to “double dip” (get welfare from more than one locale)...while there were numerous “success stories” of people getting off the dole and back to work, there weren’t as many as there should’ve been. The able bodied public assistance recipients should’ve faced TOW choices – a job or a government-run work camp.

In short, WORKFARE didn’t increase poverty, neither in rural, nor in urban locales.

You know what DID?!

DEINSTITUTIONALIZATION, which DID INDEED explode in the 1970s.

That deinstitutionalization virtually created the “homeless problem” in America, as 90% of those homeless by the 1980s were former mental patients with severe psychological and emotional disorders, exacerbated by their own “self-medicating.”

My contention that the Republican view that social spending be cut, while Military and criminal justice spending be increased is NOT an OPINION, it’s been a proven course of action over the past quarter century! SUPPLY SIDE policies have delivered over 25 years of unprecedented prosperity, after Keynesian (the inane and failed view that “government spending, especially government social spending boosts the economy”) policies imploded under Jimmy Carter, resulting in STAGFLATION in 1980 – DOUBLE DIGIT UNEMPLOYMENT, INFLATION and INTEREST rates!

In fact, the above view is a quintessentially American one. First it cuts the DEPENDANCY PROGRAMS that keep so many enslaved to the state and creates jobs in the military and law enforcement that often translate into very marketable skills that can be used later in life.

A soldier slogging through some fetid swamp in some foreign war, is FREE (self-responsible) in infinitely more ways than is a welfare recipient, who is a mere slave to the state.

America’s Founders did NOT accept the concept that “people should be free to do whatever they want, so long as they don’t harm others.”

That’s LICENSE, not freedom...and certainly NOT LIBERTY!

What they espoused was LIBERTY, which is best described as “the grinding weight of full self-ownership and personal responsibility.”

Those LIBERTY lovers wouldn’t even bail out a New England town that had been destroyed by a freak hurricane, rightfully claiming that “a government of free people has no right to spend the people’s pottage in ways that benefit the few at the expense of the many.”

Free people fend for themselves.

What about those who lack the requisite skills to do so?

There are always dirty, demanding, so-called “menial” jobs that the able-bodied poor, with few skills could handle, and such jobs offer a life-line and a way out of poverty.

There is no “valid opinion” that goes, “All people are equally deserving of respect and an equal share of the bounty produced by this country.”

That’s simply not an opinion, it’s a vile screed in support of theft, pillage and rape. For that reason, it’s not only NOT a “valid opinion,” it’s so stultifyingly stupid that anyone who’d even consider such a viewpoint is almost certainly uneducable to even a marginal degree.

I know that’s not your opinion PAA, but it IS the (retarded) opinion of some of the loonier members of the Left in America.

In short, WORKFARE works!

Everywhere it’s been implemented, it has gotten people off the dole and back to work and it’s greatly reduced the “double dipping” that had gone under Carter, Nixon and LBJ (the Keynesian triumvirate).

DEINSTITUTIONALIZATION exploded in the 1970s with “the implementation of the Supplemental Security Income program in 1974...State governments helped accelerate deinstitutionalization, especially of elderly people.

“In the 1960s and 1970s, state and national policies championed the need for comprehensive community mental health care, though this ideal was slowly and only partially realized.

“Beginning in the 1980s, managed care systems began to review systematically the use of inpatient hospital care for mental health. Both public concerns and private health insurance policies generated financial incentives to admit fewer people to hospitals and discharge inpatients more rapidly, limit the length of patient stays, or to transfer responsibility to less costly forms of care.”


SEE: http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9F05E2DE113EF937A15757C0A962958260&sec=&spon=&pagewanted=all

AND

http://www.minddisorders.com/Br-Del/Deinstitutionalization.html


The fact that Republicans and Conservatives RIGHTLY embraced SUPPLY-SIDE policies that cut social programs, while bulking up the military, police forces and our Intelligence agencies, was not at all “cruel” or “insensitive,” far from it!

That policy offered hope to millions of poor Americans to make something of their lives through shear effort, just as all those disabled people you mentioned DID...on their own!

11:13 PM  
Blogger JMK said...

“Merrick's childhood, the London Sari Centre and Nietzsche's socialistic idea's is as important in this conversation as the price of tea in China...” (PAA)
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Ironically enough, WRONG AGAIN!

You brought up Merrick and Hawking and Keller and Wonder, ALL of whom overcame their disabilities NOT via government dependency programs, but without them! Which proves my point that social welfare programs only inculcate dependency among the able-bodied poor.

Apparently that realization is a bit of an embarrassment for you.

And Nietzche (a GREAT philosopher, whom apparently you haven’t read) was a lot of things, including the impetus for one of the more brutal regimes that ever existed on earth (the Third Reich)...you’ve got company in that the Fuehrer also misunderstood Nietzsche...but he was precisely the reverse of a socialist.

Irony of ironies, just as John M Keynes was NOT an economist and Friedrich Hayek, the Austrian Nobel Prize winner who dismantled him in debate, WAS, Karl Marx was NOT a legitimate philosopher, while Friedrich Nietzsche indeed WAS.

Nietzsche espoused the ERADICATION of “charity,” claiming that it only ensured the perpetuation of the weak and non-competitive among us.

In one of his greatest works he critiqued Christianity, ”Christianity is called the religion of pity.

“Pity stands in opposition to all the tonic passions that augment the energy of the feeling of aliveness – it is a depressant. A man loses hope when he pities...suffering is made contagious by pity...

“Pity thwarts the whole law of evolution, which is the law of natural selection. It preserves whatever is ripe for destruction, it fights on the side of those disinherited and condemned by life...”

H. L Mencken, writing in the introduction to that great book noted, “What is called Bolshevism (socialism) today he saw clearly a generation ago and described it for what it was – democracy in another aspect, the old RESSENTIMENT of the lower orders in free function once more. Socialism, Puritanism, Philistinism, Christianity – he saw them all as allotropic forms of democracy, as variations upon the endless struggle of quantity against quality, of the weak and timorous against the strong and enterprising, of the botched against the fit.”

Nietzsche remains a profoundly misunderstood great man, unlike the overrated, though equally understood Karl Marx. Marx never grasped the human nature that Aristotle enunciated so well, “The strong take advantage of the weak and the smart take advantage of the strong.”

Marx railed against that human nature and eagerly embraced the struggle of what Mencken called “quantity against quality, of the weak and timorous against the strong and enterprising, of the botched against the fit.”

11:15 PM  
Blogger p. anthony allen said...

Here's even more from a report commissioned by The Kaiser Foundation.

President Carter established the President’s Commission on Mental Health, which called for a new national priority for adults and children with serious mental disorders and recommended an orderly phase-down of state hospitals through performance contracts that would integrate federal and state funding. Congress responded by enacting the Mental Health Systems Act, with numerous changes to the federal CMHC program, including, importantly, a shift in emphasis to increase the priority of this population and to expand services beyond clinical care alone.

...is what the report says about Jimmy Carters role in deinstitutionalization.

Yet there were quite "different" findings when it came to Reagan.

A further crisis was caused in the early 1980s by the Reagan Administration’s policies to reduce other federal human service program costs. A policy of accelerated reviews of individuals on the federal disability rolls left hundreds of thousands of people with mental illnesses without income as it exposed the inappropriateness of federal rules for assessing disability for this population.The Administration also slashed federal support of public housing. As low-income housing became less available, and income support evaporated almost overnight, a significant number of people with serious mental illnesses were left on the streets, representing at least a quarter of homeless individuals. With no money, nowhere to live and an underfunded mental health service system, many were in dire straits.

http://www.kff.org/medicaid/upload/7684.pdf

Makes me wonder....what would a "JMK" commissioned report on deinstitutionalization read like? Why would a commissioned report, from a "bi-partisan" group, totally contradict your statement? Are you saying they're wrong???

1:58 AM  
Blogger JMK said...

The Kaiser Foundation is a Left-wing foundation set up to lobby in favor of of MORE government involvement, MORE government spending on healthcare.

The PROBLEM with America's psychiatric care came about as a result of government involvement.

A prescient person may well point out, "Don't nearly all foundations (the Ford, Rockefeller, Carnegie Endowment, etc.) lobby IN FAVOR of MORE government in a host of areas? Doesn't it seem that most, if not all those foundations oppose the "fend-for-yourself" LIBERTY you espouse, in favor of more government assistance, involvement and control?"

For me to accept the Kaiser Foundation’s findings, I also have to accept that they MAT BE right on the issue of increased government involvement in healthcare.

I find it, after considerable review that it’s more likely than not, that I am right about the corrosive impact of increased government involvement and the various Left-wing foundations are wrong on that.

Moreover, I’m not coming from a position of benefiting from what I espouse. I’m just seeking a just society, centered around individualism and private property rights. The foundations and the wealthy interests they represent (the Carnegie, Ford and Rockefeller families) are ALL best served by a more socialistic society, in which the state can grant veritable monopoly status to favored enterprises, thus they support this misguided and very ugly merging of government with business interests.

The “political class” obviously supports this too (as it adds to their power base), thus all the government grants that go to those who see some sort of governmental answer to such problems

There are two problems with that view. INDIVIDUALISM (the U.S. Constitution) was foisted on the American people by appx 14% of the population of Colonial America, so it is NOT dependent upon the democratic support of the American people, so even IF socialism COULD be shown to work here, as it violates private property rights and INDIVIDUAL RIGHTS (the Bill of Rights spelled out government action as an enemy of Liberty and thus enumerated our “God given INDIVIDUAL Rights). In short, socialism is for another place and another people who have not been consigned to LIBERTY and INDIVIDUALISM.

The second, and more vital problem is that socialism DOES NOT work. The closest it came to working was in what we now call two “fascist states” (Mussolini’s Italy and Hitler’s Germany). Mussolini was the leader of Italy’s socialist Party before his rise to power and Hitler was indeed a dyed in the wool socialist, “We are socialists, we are enemies of today's capitalistic economic system for the exploitation of the economically weak, with its unfair salaries, with its unseemly evaluation of a human being according to wealth and property instead of responsibility and performance, and we are all determined to destroy this system under all conditions." - Adolf Hitler

(Speech of May 1, 1927)

I’m confidant that even you see those sentiments (NOT who said them...those SENTIMENTS) as disgusting and revolting as they truly are.

Admittedly, America’s mental health facilities were often misused by some prior to the 1960s. Wealthy families occasionally had one member institutionalized by other family members looking to benefit. Places like Willowbrook, on Staten Island became dumping grounds for unwanted children, but while I fully support the institutionalization, not only of the severely mentally and physically handicapped, but also those who are unable to be productive in society, I support such measures at the least expensive means we can muster.

While we may agree that warehousing people who are dangerous to themselves and others, as well as those who cannot or will not produce, I sense we may disagree over the degree of cost-effectiveness that be employed.

Bottom-line, such people are a drain on society and MUST BE dealt with in the most cost-effective way possible and that probably is with some manner of warehoused institutionalization.

BUT the very idea of deinstitutionalization was championed by Liberals. In fact, the nefarious Liberal chameleon Geraldo Rivera “made his (media) bones” on the Willowbrook expose.

Reagan did cut social programs and RIGHTLY so. There’s no evidence that welfare reform, workfare or other measures that have improved (slightly) our social services, have resulted in more or deeper poverty to any of the poor.

As I noted, in NYC the welfare rolls dropped by over a third when workfare was introduced and the overwhelming bulk of that drop was due in the cut in double-dipping.

12:07 PM  
Blogger JMK said...

A MINOR CORRECTION/AMPLIICATION:

"A prescient person may well point out, "Don't nearly all foundations (the Ford, Rockefeller, Carnegie Endowment, etc.) lobby IN FAVOR of MORE government in a host of areas? Doesn't it seem that most, if not all those foundations oppose the "fend-for-yourself" LIBERTY you espouse, in favor of more government assistance, involvement and control?"

"Well, that’s indeed correct! So, for me to accept the Kaiser Foundation’s findings, I also have to accept that they MAY BE right on the issue of increased government involvement in healthcare.

I find it, after considerable review, that it’s more likely than not, that I am right about the corrosive impact of increased government involvement and the various Left-wing foundations are wrong on that.

"Moreover, unlike those foundations, I’m not coming from a position of benefiting from what I espouse. I’m just seeking what I consider to be “a just society,” centered around individualism and private property rights. The foundations and the wealthy interests they represent (the Carnegie, Ford and Rockefeller families) are ALL best served by a more socialistic society, in which the state can grant veritable monopoly status to favored enterprises, thus they support this misguided and very ugly merging of government with business interests."

The fact that the overwhelming bulk of those involved in the political class and the very wealthy support a European styled system, does nothing to indicate that that view may have merit.

In fact, all it does is show that those who correctly perceive personal benefit from a larger, more intrusive government support that.

The problem with that?

Well, the over 86% of Americans who owe their livelihoods to PRIVATE SECTOR jobs!

While Cato and The Heritage Foundation oppose government intervention, and the Carnegie, Ford, Rockefeller foundations seem to support more intervention...I think we can agree to call it a wash on that level - there is no more "expert" opinion in favor of MORE and BIGGER government than opposed.

So, just as Leftists (as yourself) tend to discount Cato and Heritage Foundation studies, forgive me if I similarly discount Ford Foundation, Kaiser Foundation and Carnegie Endowment reports.

So where can we find some common ground?

Well, how about respect for the ideals this nation was founde on?

OK, well I'm in complete sympatico with those ideals - a defiant, even bullheaded support of absolute private property rights, the right to violent self-defense, the view of LIBERTY being "freedom from government action," and the Jeffersonian view that our "Rights come from God or our Creator" not government.

There are some ridiculous Leftists who'd consider Tom Jefferson a "Right-wing, Capitalist exploiter with a God-complex."

Since I trust you're not numbered among those kooks, I presume we can find some common ground among the traditional AMERICAN ideals this nation was founded on.

3:19 PM  
Blogger JMK said...

CORRECTION:

"My contention that the Republican view that social spending be cut, while Military and criminal justice spending be increased is NOT an OPINION, it’s been a proven course of action over the past quarter century!"

SHOULD READ:

My contention that the Republican view that social spending be cut, while Military and criminal justice spending be increased is a very "American" one and a proven PROSPERITY PRODUCER, is NOT an OPINION, it’s been a proven course of action over the past quarter century!

8:46 PM  
Blogger p. anthony allen said...

JMK mutters; "WORKFARE!?"

I have no idea how that answers the "Jimmy Carter" question, so I'll just re-post my comments on workfare.

In 1971 Reagan introduced workfare in California as the Community Work Experience Program(CWEP). Under this "workfare" program, public agencies or organizations put people to work doing anything from cleaning a business owners home, to picking grapes in Napa County's premium (and rich) wine growing districts. The cost to these business....? ZERO!!!

Reagan believed that a standard, ready to use, and "disposable" underclass was necessary for an economic balance in America. By introducing workfare, you can now be assured of a "generational" workforce of low paid workers perpetuated by the same sort of program that enslaved so many Americans over the past decades!


JMK replies; "The Kaiser Foundation is a Left-wing foundation set up to lobby in favor of of MORE government involvement, MORE government spending on health-care."

So now the Kaiser Foundation are a bunch of leftest liars....right?

You said,"homelessness and poverty exploded in the 1980s, almost exclusively because of the deinstitutionalization enacted in the mid to late 1970s, under Carter"

I showed you where deinstitutionalization was "not enacted" under Carter, and that the policy goes as far back to the 1960's and the Kennedy administration.

Thus, (again I might add) what does all your rhetoric and your lengthy diatribe have to do with the "FACT" that you were WRONG!!!
The Heritage Foundation could be a Neo-Nazi, Leftest, Communist, radical Islamist, Satanic cult... who cares, as long as they don't "make up" an story and attempt to pass it off as FACTS! (such as you have done!)

JMK, the information and reference of "who, how, and when" on deinstitutionalization is readily available on the INTERNET!

Who am I to believe, you, or my lying eyes?????

Epso-facto.... the policy was not "enacted" by Carter, the policy was around long before Carter became president!

CARTER DID NOT ENACT THE POLICY! REAGAN USED THE POLICY TO REMOVE PEOPLE FROM THE WALFARE ROLES. WHEN REAGAN DID THIS, HOMELESSNESS EXPLODED!

Any other explanation, opinion, idea, statement is either;

1. Mis-informed
2. Political spin
3. An outright bold-faced LIE!

9:56 PM  
Blogger JMK said...

WORKFARE was NOT a social welfare CUT!

That is the precise answer to your question.

WORKFARE was/IS an IMPROVEMENT of EXISTING social policy.

It DID NOT put poor people off welfare. It merely required work from those able-bodied people on public assistance.

The welfare rolls shrunk MOSTLY because of the eradication of the DOUBLE DIPPING that had gone on previously.

The cost-benefit analysis behind deinstitutionalization was absolutely, 100% dead on accurate.

The problem with our public mental health system prior to 1968 was that it was far too expensive. Some argued that it was also prone to abuse and didn't allow people with severe mental health problems (ie. bipolar people) to be productive citizens they could be, when on their medications.

My sympathies lie exclusively with the cost-benefit analysis viewpoint.

Deinstitutionalization was well-intentioned, motivated by a desire to save the taxpayer money, but it's been poorly applied; "Deinstitutionalization was based on the principle that severe mental illness should be treated in the least restrictive setting. As further defined by President Jimmy Carter's Commission on Mental Health, this ideology rested on "the objective of maintaining the greatest degree of freedom, self-determination, autonomy, dignity, and integrity of body, mind, and spirit for the individual while he or she participates in treatment or receives services." This is a laudable goal and for many, perhaps for the majority of those who are deinstitutionalized, it has been at least partially realized."

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/asylums/special/excerpt.html

WORKFARE WAS/IS an IMPROVEMENT to the failed DEPENDANCY progrmas that Liberal initially enacted.

I dare say there isn't a reputable sole around today with a negative view of workfare.

10:28 PM  
Blogger JMK said...

"So now the Kaiser Foundation are a bunch of leftest liars....right?" (PAA)
<
<
ANY group that lobbies IN FAVOR of the failed policy of MORE government involvement
in healthcare, education, social services, etc. (which the Kaiser Foundation is ONE....they consistently and inanely lobby IN FAVOR of more government involvement in America's healthcare) is indeed, as I defined them, "a Left-wing organization."

You called them "liars?"

Why?

They may merely be misguided PAA. Ever consider that?

DEINSTITUTIONALIZATION did NOT explode in the 1980s.

It DID in the 1970s.

You've wisely refused to argue AGAINST workfare. Perhaps you agree with me that it hasn't gone far enough?

Conservatives and moderates oppose dependancy programs that throw money at dynsfunctional people, thereby rewarding dysfunction.

Workfare is a GREAT step in the right direction, which is why I support even greater reforms and you seem unwilling/unable to argue against workfare, or in favor of traditional welfare.

I want LESS government....OK, far less government involvement in social services, etc, and MORE in law enforcement, the court system and the military.

Short of that I want a government that does the bidding of its RIGHTFUL consuitutents - the people who PAY FOR their campaigns, Corporate entities, special interest lobbies, etc.

In my view, a government that lacks the integrity to do that doesn't deserve to exist.

10:59 PM  
Blogger p. anthony allen said...

JMK; "So, just as Leftists (as yourself) tend to discount Cato and Heritage Foundation studies, forgive me if I similarly discount Ford Foundation, Kaiser Foundation and Carnegie Endowment reports."

I never said that I discounted the Heritage Foundation nor the Cato Institutes studies. Fact is I may disagree with some of their "opinions", predictions, or assessments, but if there are facts based on actual occurrences, or historically correct references, discounting the truth would be rather "bone-headed".

Obviously you "glossed" over and did not read my post where I placed a link to a Heritage Foundation report....

12:09 AM  
Blogger JMK said...

I'm glad to hear of your faith in Cato and the Heritage Foundation, BOTH of which, along with the Hoover Institution, reject the idea that MORE government involvement and funds toward healthcare = BETTER healthcare.

That's my stand as well.

In fact, I agree with the late and very great Milton Friedman who said that a completely free market approach to healthcare would best reduce costs.

It's like this, since we don't have "plumber's insurance" and "carpenter's insurance," we are better consumers and competing tradesmen seek to offer their skills at market prices - prices most people can afford.

Same thing would happen in healthcare. The healthcare tradesmen (physicians, etc) would have to offer care at affordable prices.

It's not a valid opinion to inanely claim that more government involvement would better a system that government involvement damaged in the first place!

It seems you concede that WORKFARE was an IMPROVEMENT of the social welfare system.....and it was, as it virtually stopped the DOUBLE DIPPING by itself.

Deinstitutionalization starteback in 1948, gained ground when various psychotropic drugs allowed some patients to live "normal lives" while on medication and was accelerated even more by the ACLU's lawsuits to force that on state governments...

The Willowbrook expose in 1973 made deinstitutionalization a favored Leftist cause, some Conservatives embraced closing state run facilities to SAVE MONEY, but in their defense, they ALL opposed the called for EXTRA FUNDING for community treatment, etc.

Workfare is a huge step foward, though more cost-saving reforms need to be enacted,

I'm also heartened to hear that you too agree with warehousing those with severe mental, physical and emotional problems (that last one could be used to institutionalize anyone who isn't "productive"). It would seem we have a common enemy on this - the ACLU.

But we've gotten far afiled from the crux of this discussion, Social Security!

You wrongly said, "Bush proposed that the funds generated by Social Security be placed under the control of private trust funds, or something like a giant 401k plan," when in FACT, the current administration sought to privatize less than 10% of the funds and allow those over fifty years of age to opt out.

Regardless of the benefits, I have ALWAYS maintained that the Bush plan didn't go far enough.

AS I noted, The parameter that is critical to the survival of Social Security is the retirment age to life expectancy ratio.

That is, as the life expectancy goes up, so MUST the retirement age.

Today the average life expectancy in the U.S. is 77.9 years, SO, according to the original parameters of Social Security, the age when an American can get full benefits SHOULD BE appx. 76.9 years....let's just round it off to lefe expectancy = 80 and the age for full SS benes should = 79.

AND it SHOULD'VE been rising along with life expectancy all along. If it had, there'd be no "solvency issues" surrounding it today.

There's NOTHING "cruel" about any of that. In fact, people are living, not only longer, but staying healthier and more vibrant far longer. In short, many of the oldsters CAN and SHOULD work.

3:45 PM  
Blogger p. anthony allen said...

JMK mutters; "DEINSTITUTIONALIZATION did NOT explode in the 1980s."

I never said it did! I said HOMELESSNESS exploded during the 1980s!

You "FALSLY", claimed that Jimmy Carter enacted the policy... "YOUR STATEMENT WAS FALSE, MISLEADING, UNTRUE AND WRONGGGGGGG!"

Even within the statement you posted from PBS, it does not state nor imply that Carter "ENACTED" the policy. PBS states;

"As further DEFINED by President Jimmy Carter's Commission on Mental Health..."

"Further defined" in no shape, form or manner implies "ENACT"!
Admit it, you were WRONG!

JMK says;"You've wisely refused to argue AGAINST workfare. Perhaps you agree with me that it hasn't gone far enough?"

Did'nt you read anything in my previous posts? I told you what was needed. (ie..training in much needed and well paying fields, such as advanced computer training, bio-and/or animal sciences, electronics, ect...)

Workfare is a sham! It's merely a continuance of the "class-based" welfare system. All workfare does is expand the class of low skilled, underpaid workers.

JMK:"I want LESS government....OK, far less government involvement in social services, etc, and MORE in law enforcement, the court system and the military"

Law enforcement..court systems???
Code words for MORE PRISONS!

JMK;"It DID NOT put poor people off welfare. It merely required work from those able-bodied people on public assistance."

Boy oh boy....

To save myself the time and effort of explaining my point of view, and posting a lot of quotes, just read an essay written by Noble Prize winning economist, Robert Solow, about the effects of workfare.

http://www.jobsletter.org.nz/art/artsolow.htm

5:26 PM  
Blogger JMK said...

Homelessness exploded in the the 1980s DUE to the mass deinstitutionalization of the 1970s. Deinstitutionalization was a LIBERAL CAUSE. It was sued for, by the ACLU and pushed foward by many Liberal state legislatures, including California's.

What Reagan did was sign into law a Democrat sponsored Bill WITHOUT funding the "community outreach" the Democrats had enacted with it.

Reagan RIGHTLY insisted that deinstitutionalization be a COST-CUTTING measure and not a backdoor way to spend MORE government funds on psychiatric care.

That's a sound policy.

Workfare is NOT a sham, simply because you believe it to be so,

And you DID agree with me in principle that WORKFARE is a GOOD "first step," merely disagreeing with the types of jobs and job training offered - I consider basic road repair, bridge painting, etc., to be more in-line with the skill sets of those mired in dependancy, while you think that these drug addicted, alcoholic, chronically reckless and irresponsible people are better suited to "training in much needed and well paying fields, such as advanced computer training, bio-and/or animal sciences, electronics, ect."

We merely disagree on method, NOT on whether requiring welfare recipients to work is a good idea, as it would seem that we both revile any form of a guaranteed income and we both seem to support mandated work for these wards of the state.

11:47 AM  
Blogger JMK said...

The essay you linked to has two major flaws;

The FIRST is that the author (Profesor Solow) espouses the demonstrably wrong view that the economy, or in this case that jobs, are a fixed pie.

"It follows that the labor market is like a game, or several games, of musical chairs...When the music stops, the players scramble for the available chairs. Since there are fewer chairs than players, the losers are left standing. They are, you might say, the unemployed. If the game were repeated, the losers might be different people, but the number of losers is determined entirely by the number of players and the number of chairs."

The economy is NOT a fixed pie, IF anyone could prove that the economy WERE indeed a fixed pie, then socialism would be not only vindicated, but it would be the ONLY logical, rational economic vision.

Of course, our economy is NOT a fixed pie, currency, jobs and wealth are all constantly in a state of flux.

IF we had a fixed amount of currency, then the socialist charge that the wealthy are "taking more than their fair share of the wealth created," would hold some value.

Of course, the wealthy, whether they're investors, inventors or business owners CREATE the wealth they amass.

Moreover, the amount of wealth in our economy expands and contracts all the time.

In a fluid economy (like ours), jobs would increase as investment increases and investment increases as the tax burden is reduced...and reducing public assistance and entitlement costs (Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, and SSI) would certainly allow for major tax rate reductions.

Secondly the man that Professor Solow quotes (William Julius Wilson), supports yet another form of WORKFARE...a veritable WPA program were people are forced to do menial infrastructure jobs in return for their public assistance;

"William Julius Wilson has advocated that the government create something like the WPA of the New Deal years. I can see the point of that. Pretty clearly there are major needs to improve infrastructure in urban and rural communities that could be met with little or no trespassing on the private sector, and with intensive use of unskilled labor."

Yes, such a WPA/workfare program certainly would be an improvement in my view.....Yours too, I hope?

12:28 PM  
Blogger p. anthony allen said...

JMK says; "while you think that these drug addicted, alcoholic, chronically reckless and irresponsible people are better suited to "training in much needed and well paying fields, ect.."

No, I don't think "drug addicted, alcoholic, chronically reckless and irresponsible people" are better suited for the fields that I mentioned. Neither do I broad-brush profile all welfare recipients with your stereotypical bias.

I "KNOW" that there are a large percentage welfare recipients, men and women (mostly women), who are trainable in science and technically related fields.

I never said I thought that manual labor and menial skill jobs were unwarranted. Yet, if the government wants to employ people to do menial work, it should be done like any other government job. Open it up to all who wish to do the work. Make the pay similar to that in the private sector.

Workfare forces everyone into menial work and a menial existence. As people become adapted to it (as its is with the social welfare system presently) a complacency sets in. This complacency is generational. (ie. past on to the next). In effect, Workfare set-up as a "continuance" of the welfare system.

Look at it this way JMK. You're a firefighter, right? Even though I know nothing else about you, I would be willing to bet that your father was "NOT";

-A mayor of a large city
-A neurosurgeon
-A CEO of a mid to large size corporation
-An Astronaut
-A scientist
-A Hollywood star actor
I could go on, but hopefully you see my point.

For the most part, the vast majority of Americans "follow in the parents footsteps". I'm not saying it happens in every case, but by-in-large that's the way it typically plays out.

It's no different with welfare or the proposed WORKFARE!

I have seen generation after generation of welfare mothers here in Detroit. I have seen young girls graduate from high school, many with very high G.P.A.'s, who wind up basically turning into their mothers. It becomes a cycle of hopelessness. Hopeless in finding a good job. Hopeless in finding a good man. Hopelessness passed on by a system that began 70 years ago.

4:11 PM  
Blogger p. anthony allen said...

JMK; "The essay you linked to has two major flaws"

Hmmmmmm?

A Firefighter..????

or,

A Noble Prize winning Professor Emeritus from M.I.T.????

Who should I trust to make a "sound" economic decision?
hmmmmmm?
Sorry JMK, I'm gonna have to go with the guy from MIT.

4:37 PM  
Blogger JMK said...

PAA, the difference is there are people who WANT to operate heavy equipment, fight fires and do investigative police work....NO ONE really WANTS or aspires to be on welfare.

Ironically enough, my Dad came from a family of lawyers, both brothers, numerous uncles, etc....and he himself after serving in both WW II and Korea in two stints in the Navy (1943 - 1951) became a fireman, and went to school the rest of his life, amassing an MBA, a MS in Fire Science a Mathematics degree and a B.A. in philosophy....he loved College and hoped to teach one day, when he retired, buit after nearly four decades in the Fire Dept holding almost every rank, he went from full time firefighter to full time cancer patient within a year.

I too have education I haven't used directly - I have a M.S. Ed and ran programs for the community based handicapped before getting on the FDNY (didn't like that....not enough activity), I have a B.S. in Economics another in Psychology with a dual Bio major....I initially considered pursuing a career in physiological psychology.

I'd like to think I use some of that education every day when I make decisions and especially when I invest.

Here's where we stand, I COULD easily acept the WPA-type program that William Juliu Wilson recommends. I think that could be practical.

As for pay, I'd consider two options and EITHER/OR.....either you work at straight pay that's generally given bridge painters with no other "assistance," OR you maintain your current public assistance, Section-8 housing, WIC payments, food stamps, etc. in exchange for the WPA type work done.

I think that's pretty fair.

2:16 PM  
Blogger JMK said...

I don't believe ANY economist believes that our economic system is a static or "fixed pie."

OK, that's not rue as there are people like Paul Krugman...a PhD in economics from MIT who is no longer an "economist," but instead a political commentator.

And yes, I shamelessly assert that I as a fireman and an investor (I trade commodities on the NYMEX) probably....no, almost certainly know more then Paul Krugman.

In fact, Milton Friedman, Friedrich Hayek and Ludwig von Mises ALL NObel Prze winners in economics have demonstrated the fluid nature of our economy.

Currency, wealth and JOBS constantly expand and contract.

That's undeniable and anyone who'd challenge that is probaly guilty of having their common sense "educated out of them."

So IF indeed our economy is a fluid one than in a fluid economy (like ours), jobs would increase as investment increases and investment increases as the tax burden is reduced...and reducing public assistance and entitlement costs (Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, and SSI) would certainly allow for major tax rate reductions.

The second flaw in Professor Solow's article is that he quotes and agrees with William Julius Wilson who supports merely ANOTHER form of WORKFARE. The man that Professor Solow quotes (William Julius Wilson), supports yet another form of WORKFARE...a veritable WPA program were people are forced to do menial infrastructure jobs in return for their public assistance.

2:23 PM  
Blogger JMK said...

"Hopelessness passed on by a system that began 70 years ago." (PAA)
<
<
So, you're acknowledging that welfare is a failed system because it inculcates a sense of entitlement and dependancy upon the state.

I agree.

Americans didn't starve before welfare, that's for sure.

People actually WORKED their way out of poverty.

Freedom is NOT "doing whatever one wants, so long as you don't harm anyone else." That's LICENSE.

Freedom is self-ownership, which entails complete and absolute self-responsibility.

No one is "entitled by circumstance" (poverty, age, health, etc) to being taken care of at other people's expense.

There exists no such entitlement. To claim that "the poor," or "the elderly" or "the sick" DESRVE to be taken care of at everyone else's expense is exactly the same thing as advocating in favor of chattel slavery. If you are forced, against your will (or, if naive enough, with your approval) to take care of me because I'm sick...you are basiclly being forced into INVOLUNTARY SERVITUDE or chattel slavery. It really doesn't matter whether you're forced at the point of a gun, at the threat of imprisonment or by a tug at your heart-strings, you are being compelled to benefit ANOTHER at YOUR expense by a third party (in this case, the state, or government).

People who depend on others are not free, they owe their sustenance and means to an existence to another or others....likewise people who depend on the state are, in effect slaves to or "wards of" the state.

You know who benefits most from our welfare system?

Not the millions of recipients, most of whom COULD find some way to make a living on their own, if they had to, but the army of over-educated and under-common sensed social workers and other bureaucrats, many of whom haven't even mastered such basic life skills as changing a car's tire or boiling water. THESE are the people who really NEED welfare! They are also the ones who benefit from it the most.

Some sort of WPA program, as outlined by WJ Wilson, might well be the way to go, provided that it be an EITHER/OR proposition - "EITHER take the pay that any bridge painter or road repair worker would get and "fend for yourself" on that, OR work at that WPA-type job and continue to get the public assistance benefits you get now...just not both."

I'd prefer the first alternative, as ideally, no one's life should be planned out, budgeted and controlled by the state, as THAT'S what causes the hopelessness in the first place.

5:45 PM  

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