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why should the government help the poor

If we go in thinking the worst of people, then we design ugly solutions. The bad: Work requirements for welfare recipients. On principle, this effort was laudable and, in fact, was widely seen as a positive step. In 1996, in a deal brokered by President Clinton and Newt Gingrich, the
was passed, with a primary objective of moving people off of the government rolls and into the workforce. In one aspect, it was a huge success; welfare rates plummeted. But the work requirement for those on welfare did not increase substantially. Why? Because it was designed for the wrong problem. If the problem was lazy people who were taking advantage of the system, then the work requirement provides the proper incentive. However, if the issue was something like increases of single mothers who have few options for affordable day care or preschool, then requiring them to work only exacerbates their problem. The ugly: If we go in thinking the worst of people, then we design ugly solutions. This is most apparent with that will require drug tests for food stamp recipients. What signal does this send?

It suggests pretty blatantly that we have a strong suspicion that many, if not most, food stamp recipients are drug users and that we shouldn t waste funds on people who are engaged in such activities. That is no way to move people ahead. It just drives them further away. It comes with little surprise then that we as Americans have a schizophrenic view of our government s role in helping people achieve the Dream. After all, we re merely a reflection of how our political leaders see and talk about their own roles. At a 30,000-foot level, more progressive politicians see government s role as trying to create systems to help people do better or fix broken systems that hold people back. On the flip side, more conservative politicians will suggest that these systems actually get in the way of people trying to get ahead and should largely be minimized or removed. In fact, in research conducted to understand how the two major parties thought about health, when staffers from each party were asked to create visual metaphor portraits of how they think people become healthier, this is exactly what we saw.

Liberals produced pictures of cogs and machines and containers and systems. Conservatives put together pictures of roads and paths where people encounter barriers in need of overcoming or removal. The purpose of government is to safeguard rights, not regulate economies. P It should not attempt to "redistribute wealth" as this is the equivalent of legally sanctioned theft. P "The power to tax is the power to destroy. "P And doesn't the government love destruction! To take from those who earn, to give to those who don't in addition to being morally reprehensible, as a prior post indicated, consolidates the power of government over an individuals finances, which is a far deeper wrong. P Perhaps that is the real reason governments engage in this practice of self-aggrandizement, but describe it as a "fairness for all" doctrine. Certainly no society thrives when a few control everthing, and the many have nothing. P Neither does a society thrive when the government "regulates" economies through taxation, and pretends that everryone is economically equivalent and there' a "classless" society.

But this is exactly what those who are in government propose. P If government did its job in maintaining a level market and allowing economic activity to flourish, the level of economic activity would increase, there would be those few who would become very wealthy, alongside those many who would become quite well to do as well -- "the poor you have with you always," but where individuals are free to dispose of their money as they see fit and are not coerced to give it to government, you'll have the smallest number of those in poverty. However, government isn't interested in reducing poverty, quite the opposite. By paying lip service to reducing poverty while undermining economic activity, they can then come in with a new "program," defraud the wealthy, "help" to poor, create class warfare, and sit back and enjoy the spoils. P The day government wishes to truly lessen poverty will be the day you'll see government remove itself from its role of bleeding its citizens white through taxation.

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