Sunday, September 22, 2013

Let Them Eat Shame

Repugs know damn well their proposed $40 billion in cuts to food stamps will never fly. They don't care.  Because the immediate cuts are not their goal.  Their goal is demonizing people so poor they can't afford to eat. Their goal is shaming people whose two minimum wage jobs do not provide enough income to feed their children.  Their goal is to ensure that the unemployed victims of Wall Street greed get all the blame for the economic devastation caused by rich people.

David Atkins at Hullabaloo:

The next time someone talks about how food stamps create a "culture of dependency", remind them almost half of the people on SNAP, otherwise known as the food stamp program, are children. And nearly half of those kids belong to parents who have jobs, but are in poverty anyway.

SNAP provides families with an estimated 22 million children with resources to purchase a nutritionally adequate diet. This represents close to 1 in 3 children (29 percent) in the United States. Almost half of all SNAP recipients are children (47 percent), and an additional 26 percent are adults living with children. (See Figure 1.) Forty percent of all SNAP recipients live in households with preschool-age children (ages 4 and below). 
Over 70 percent of SNAP benefits go to households with children. In 2011, SNAP provided an estimated $51 billion in benefits to families with children, over half of which went to families with preschool-age children.

SNAP families are low-income. A typical family with children that is enrolled in SNAP has income (not including SNAP) at 57 percent of the poverty line. For a family of three, 57 percent of the poverty line corresponds with an annual income of $10,785 in 2012. A typical family with children on SNAP spends close to three-quarters of its income on housing and/or child care costs. Families with children currently receive an average of $420 a month in SNAP benefits, or about $5,000 a year. 
SNAP benefits help working families support their children. Nearly half (48 percent) of children who receive SNAP live in low-wage working families. A typical working household with children receives an average of $400 a month in SNAP benefits, representing about 30 percent of the family’s average income.
This is not a rational disagreement about public policy. This is a gulf of basic decency, a demand by fearful people for the sacrifice of innocents to sate a perversely sadistic form of cosmic justice.

Interestingly, most people demanding the starvation of children so that billionaires can buy more yachts call themselves Christian. Perhaps they're reading a Biblical translation that calls for blood sacrifice of innocents so that the rich may enjoy more fruits of Mammon. I missed that part in my copy.
 Sorry, David, but the problem is not their failure to read their Bronze Age mythology correctly. The problem is the ubiquity of religions that prevent the poor from killing the rich.

Ellison: "Food assistance for working families fulfills a promise we make to each other: if you fall on hard times, your neighbors, friends and fellow Americans will help you get a meal. Eighteen companies dodged $92 billion in taxes last year, which is more than double the cut passed by Republicans today. Let’s cut corporate waste, not meals for our nation’s children."
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