Saturday, August 4, 2012

Cutting food stamps for screwy social engineering reasons

I have seen some old saws being repeated to rationalize the Ryan budget plan that would cut food stamps for the poor and Head Start, as well.  The theory is: if you cut food stamps, the poor welfare queens will not have money left over to buy cigarettes and beer.  If we cut their stamps, we will be doing them a favor and force them to drop their nasty habits.  Of course,food stamps cannot be used to buy cigarettes and beer, but if we can cut their disposable income , the theory is they will change their habits.

 We all need to change some habits, but not that way. The addicted rarely change their habits for money reasons. They just make their addiction their spending  priority, not nutrition.

  However,  this reasoning  used by some of  the anti food stamp people  is based upon both ignorance and some screwy social engineering resulting in collateral damage to the ones who most benefit from such programs: the kids.

To cite a paragraph or two from a prior column I wrote:
"Most of these safety net programs are for children that give them tools to escape dependence. Three-quarters of food stamp recipients are families with children. Of the nutrition programs for the poor (8.7 million recipients), 4.3 million are women with children, 2.2 million with infants. National school lunch programs: 30.5 million kids benefit. Children's health programs (CHIP) keep them healthy enough to go to school and Head Start gets them ready to enter first grade. By reducing money to these programs, we guarantee more poor do not have good nutrition needed to learn, or to gain the ability to qualify for jobs Republicans hope to create.

Romney and the GOP are trying to fool well meaning conservatives, but presenting their plans for the poor as a jobs program or a moral plus is a shameful deception."

1 comment:

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