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poverty and protective services


mtomom
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It is far easier to pay for Other People's stupid decisions than Family Member's stupid decisions.

 

Other People may buy too much car at a too high interest rate, but Family Members do it while on the phone with you as you are telling them not to do it.

 

Other People don't call me complaining that they have no money but need to buy more bottled water to take to work. Family Members do, and then refuse to listen when you let them know the solution is in the their kitchen faucet of perfectly usable drinking water.

 

Other People don't buy you an expensive jacket for Christmas as a kid while the water heater (same price as jacket) is broken. Guess who does?!

 

I can maintain an intellectual compassion for Other People in bad situations that breaks down into grumbling irritation when it comes to Family Members.

 

Bah humbug and all.

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 ... I'm going to make a lot of people angry.... I think it's wrong to pay tens of thousands into the adoption business while whining about spending the same money to give those families a better situation that would allow them to keep their own children. Not even one person should have to choose between food or their child, education or their child, shelter or their child. It just should not even be a part of any Christian or modern country equation in helping others.

 

As for what scripture says. We are called to love our neighbor. Who is our neighbor? Everyone.

 

 ....

 

Maybe this is different in some states, but it is my understanding that adopting from the US foster system is pretty low cost in dollar terms.  Certainly cheaper than the average cost of having a biological child.  The main cost is the mental stress it puts on all parties when a child is jerked around for years.

 

I think we all agree that if money is the problem, the child should stay with the parents and the community needs to set the family up with services and support.  The adoption / termination of parental rights is for problems that money will not solve.

 

I have family who went through such tortures at the hands of their parents, it would make you cry to hear it.  It had nothing to do with money or with anything else "the system" could give to the parents.  We all know what bad parents do when they get more money.  There is nothing "loving" about enabling that.  If a child's life sucks because of the parents, sometimes the most loving thing to do is get better parents for the child asap. 

 

(And if you're implying I should have opted to pay more taxes instead of adopting my kids, I will say if you don't want people commenting on your family building choices, don't comment on mine.)

Edited by SKL
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Not even the non-governmental systems necessarily do this.

I once got billed for surgery exactly a year after I had had it and had had it paid for by my insurance.  At the time I had Blue Cross with 100% hospitalization coverage, so it didn't cost me a dime, but I wanted to alert my insurance company that this was a mistake or a fraudulent charge.  The person who answered the phone was uninterested in this information, and gave me a hard time for reporting it since I didn't personally lose any money because of it.  I imagine that they paid the claim, even though it is impossible to remove two gall bladders from the same person.

 

It's not and never will be perfect, but ideally there should be / is a system by which to provide feedback which gets used.  I know my insurer always has a note on its documents or a link on its web pages to report fraud or waste.  (Probably some of the people at the other end will read reports with interest and others will not.)  I'm sure at least some government agencies are working on this too.  It should become a regular feature of the system.

 

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I can see the pros of both the oversight and the no-strings money.  Perhaps an ideal system would have both - you have to prove you can handle the no-strings money; if your kids are still not having their needs met, or if you're still doing drugs and not holding a job, then you get babysat.  If you have mental illness, you need to get treatment, and we need to cover that; but if you won't participate so you can do right by your kids or your landlord, then you get babysat.

 

There is no way this country is ever going to do a UBI payout for all, because the majority would be in hysterics over the possibility that the people paying into the tax system might get some money out.  (Nor do I think that would make sense.)  But we do a variant of it by having the refundable child tax credit / earned income credit.

 

If you have to prove you can manage no-strings money, by definition it isn't no strings.

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If you have to prove you can manage no-strings money, by definition it isn't no strings.

 

OK but realistically, it will never really be "no strings."  Not sure it should be.

 

The main point here is kids not getting their needs met and how some of it is the parents' choices and some isn't.  So yes, meeting kids' needs to the best of your ability should be a requirement, especially if that's why you're in the system in the first place.

 

To clarify, I did not mean you have to prove you can manage before you get the money.  But if you have been receiving the money that's supposed to keep you above water and you're still sinking because of choices, then why should you keep getting more money to waste?  That money would be better spent in other ways.

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Not drop Medicaid funding, divert it into more physical service locations offering the services at the appropriate discount. Essentially subsidized medical care. It's more cost effective to provide more clinics than pay other providers, because of pooled overhead.

 

Same thing with physical food banks - as a SNAP supplement it is cheaper to bulk purchase the food directly and repackage it, distributing to individuals by mail or drop off or allowing pickup, than some further expansion of WIC or SNAP. These are the more socialist/community supportive alternatives to the semi privatized system currently available, but that could be managed cost effectively. I personally don't favor them ideologically but it's a halfway point between the two sides that would possibly pass congress.

 

A softer sliding scale of responsibility on income vs tax burden is a decent solution, but it cuts revenue to implement it because someone making a dollar over the income guidelines isn't now on the hook for the same tax burden as someone at the top of that same bracket. A flat tax is also a decent solution, since it is a percentage of a given income and not the bracket system it has that gradation built in. But waivers would have to be more selective.

 

As for your thoughts about your family and enabling, generation issues, etc, you proved my point (which was philosophical and not personal, I'm not really picking on you specifically). Someone's family has to pay for it, and how much of that can you shift on someone else's family before they can't handle it, either? There has to be balance or it topples pretty quickly over a cliff of sustainability, where everyone suffers. Venezuela has been a really glaring recent example of mismanagement and overpromising of resources, where now pretty much everyone is in trouble. Major oversimplification, but if I can find it I read a great article awhile back that listed some of the etiology of the issues and lessons to learn in terms of US policy. It was well balanced and very thoughtful.

 

 

And finally, what is enough money and support to prove love of one's neighbor to your satisfaction? And what level of sacrifice must be sustained for that love, who gets to decide? How much pain and drain do I get to undertake on behalf of a family not even my own?

 

I believe that the usual limit is something about the clothes off your back.

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OK but realistically, it will never really be "no strings."  Not sure it should be.

 

The main point here is kids not getting their needs met and how some of it is the parents' choices and some isn't.  So yes, meeting kids' needs to the best of your ability should be a requirement, especially if that's why you're in the system in the first place.

 

To clarify, I did not mean you have to prove you can manage before you get the money.  But if you have been receiving the money that's supposed to keep you above water and you're still sinking because of choices, then why should you keep getting more money to waste?  That money would be better spent in other ways.

 

That's how it is now though, even if you earn money from a job.  If you aren't meeting certain standards you can be placed under some kind of limits.

 

Why would UBI be any different - if you aren't feeding your kids, you are not going to be able to keep doing that.

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OK but realistically, it will never really be "no strings."  Not sure it should be.

 

The main point here is kids not getting their needs met and how some of it is the parents' choices and some isn't.  So yes, meeting kids' needs to the best of your ability should be a requirement, especially if that's why you're in the system in the first place.

 

To clarify, I did not mean you have to prove you can manage before you get the money.  But if you have been receiving the money that's supposed to keep you above water and you're still sinking because of choices, then why should you keep getting more money to waste?  That money would be better spent in other ways.

I think one of the questions is whether it is cost effective to have 'strings' or not.

 

I recall years ago seeing it reported that although the welfare system was not as cost effective as just providing an income would be, that at least it employed people as case workers who would otherwise have been unemployed.

 

That argument is reversed in the case of the UBI.

 

I still think a UBI would be inflationary and result in no long term improvement, but am open to other input.

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That's how it is now though, even if you earn money from a job.  If you aren't meeting certain standards you can be placed under some kind of limits.

 

Why would UBI be any different - if you aren't feeding your kids, you are not going to be able to keep doing that.

 

I wasn't really talking about UBI but rather reforming the current system where everyone gets babysat (or not, in some programs) regardless of how responsible they are.

 

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I wasn't really talking about UBI but rather reforming the current system where everyone gets babysat (or not, in some programs) regardless of how responsible they are.

 

 

Ok.

 

Well, that is considered one of the advantages of a UBI approach - one that particularly appeals to conservatives.  It tends to allow people to come up with their own solutions and methods that work for their family, so long as they are getting the job done.

 

The kind of oversight and means testing that you see in many programs tends to be really inefficient, inflexible, and its ver costly in terms of administration.

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It is far easier to pay for Other People's stupid decisions than Family Member's stupid decisions.

 

Other People may buy too much car at a too high interest rate, but Family Members do it while on the phone with you as you are telling them not to do it.

 

Other People don't call me complaining that they have no money but need to buy more bottled water to take to work. Family Members do, and then refuse to listen when you let them know the solution is in the their kitchen faucet of perfectly usable drinking water.

 

Other People don't buy you an expensive jacket for Christmas as a kid while the water heater (same price as jacket) is broken. Guess who does?!

 

I can maintain an intellectual compassion for Other People in bad situations that breaks down into grumbling irritation when it comes to Family Members.

 

Bah humbug and all.

Ugh, hugs.

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It's not the amount though, it's the efficiency and logic of how it's used. For the amount we as a country spend on social services, poverty should be almost non-existent, and yet there is little change from generation to generation. Pouring more good money after bad isn't the answer.

 

I am a conservative and I share in many different ways in addition to paying way more taxes than are justified by the results. Would I pay more? Yes, if the money was being used well. I always vote for levies for the organizations that I trust to use money well.

 

I think the idea that the social net isn't "us personally paying" is a problem, because people don't think of it as something they can influence.

 

I see several posters saying (and I have also observed) that they are forced by government programs to make inefficient buying decisions. My reaction would be, did you contact the agency and tell them there was a cheaper and equally good alternative? Does the agency have a system to receive and use that kind of information? If people felt they should do that, if multiple people would call / text / email / post on the agency's website, maybe the agencies would look into it and change the rules to save money. That's what anyone in a non-governmental system would do, so why not in a government-funded system?

There are few things less efficient than the hodge lodge non system we have. That is not what anyone in a non govt funded system does. Private corporations are notorious for waste too. They will nickel and dime and low ball wages and out source while insisting on keeping the corporate jet. Private charities have their hearts in the right place but often individual people refuse to listen to what is actually needed. The charity disasters after the natural disaster is a prime example. Sending thousands of bags of clothing that people cant sort or store or wear creating another problem instead of providing help.

 

Don't get me wrong. I adore great charities for all the good they do and hope they never stop, but that doesn't change that we can do better for our fellow humans as a country as well.

 

It is not enough for me to say someone else should step up. Someone else's family. Someone else's church. Someone is me and it is you and it is everyone else too. Part of that is a society full of someone elses deciding where they want their priorities to be. If our priorities are reflected in where we spend our time and our money, (and IMNHO it does) then how do we make that evident as a nation?

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I believe that the usual limit is something about the clothes off your back.

I keep deleting and trying to figure out how to answer this. You're seriously advocating that for a government standard? Or even one all believers must adhere to regardless of circumstance, as some sort of litmus test of whether one is loving enough?

Edited by Arctic Mama
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I keep deleting and trying to figure out how to answer this. You're seriously advocating that for a government standard? Or even one all believers must adhere to regardless of circumstance, as some sort of litmus test of whether one is loving enough?

 

I thought she was tongue-in-cheek.

 

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I believe that the usual limit is something about the clothes off your back.

 

Yes, but clearly not a single person in this thread has done that, because you are still posting on your computer with your (probably) non-dial up connection, sitting in your chair instead of the cheapest folding one you could find at the thrift store, wearing a shirt.

 

 

I can understand an argument about the practicalities of running a functional society, in which there isn't too much wealth disparity because wealth disparity is destabilizing, but I cannot understand when that argument becomes a moral one, because to average out incomes across the world, a universal basic income in the US would be counterproductive.  The poorest 5% in the US are still almost certainly above average in worldwide standard of living terms, what with the running water and electricity and welfare and emergency room health care and soup kitchens and food stamps.

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They need a complete support system and this is where the church needs to step in and wrap their arms (and finances) around these families.

 

They need stable, safe, affordable housing, affordable quality day care, access to good public transportation or a reliable vehicle, respite care for emergencies, etc.

 

Just a slight breakdown can spiral out of control quickly. In our area if you miss even one day of work at most factory jobs in the first 6 months you are fired immediately. Think of a single parent with a child who gets the flu...can't go to school or daycare. If they leave them home alone they can get hit with neglect but if they stay home they lose their job. Same thing if their car breaks down.

 

Many of these parents don't have adequate support systems....a friend to call for a ride to work, a grandparent to stay with a sick kid, etc.

 

Yes. A minister here who works with people experiencing homelessness says, "The opposite of homelessness is community." It's the people with neither the means to pay for a solution (like a baby-sitter who will come over) or the personal connections to call on (like an aunt five minutes away) who are in trouble when confronted with what would otherwise just be a minor inconvenience.

 

 

 

 

Min wage jobs aren't meant to be career jobs. 

FDR said the point of minimum wage was so that people could live decently (presumably meaning fed, clothed, not at risk of homelessness, able to get to and from the job, etc.):

 

In my Inaugural I laid down the simple proposition that nobody is going to starve in this country. It seems to me to be equally plain that no business which depends for existence on paying less than living wages to its workers has any right to continue in this country. By "business" I mean the whole of commerce as well as the whole of industry; by workers I mean all workers, the white collar class as well as the men in overalls; and by living wages I mean more than a bare subsistence level-I mean the wages of decent living. (1933)

So yes, you are supposed to be able to support yourself with a minimum wage job at 40 hours a week. Housing and medical costs make that a very challenging proposition in most of the country right now.

Edited by whitehawk
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I don't have time right now to read every post but as to the "no strings attached". Where I live in Europe most public assistance money is paid without strings in as far as checking up on its use. There is loads of paperwork to fill out in order to be eligible and there are various different forms (e.g. housing assistance, basic living expenses if you could get a job but can't find one etc.) but any benefits you get are paid out in cash. There are no food stamps etc.

 

Now, I am sure there is some abuse but I actually don't think it is much worse than it is in the US. People do make stupid choices, but as far as I can tell not significantly more. 

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Not drop Medicaid funding, divert it into more physical service locations offering the services at the appropriate discount. Essentially subsidized medical care. It's more cost effective to provide more clinics than pay other providers, because of pooled overhead.

 

Same thing with physical food banks - as a SNAP supplement it is cheaper to bulk purchase the food directly and repackage it, distributing to individuals by mail or drop off or allowing pickup, than some further expansion of WIC or SNAP. These are the more socialist/community supportive alternatives to the semi privatized system currently available, but that could be managed cost effectively. I personally don't favor them ideologically but it's a halfway point between the two sides that would possibly pass congress.

*snip*

 

Except said clinics will quickly devolve into overbooked pass the buck models. Just like most low income clinics are currently. 

 

And I guess under your ideas, anyone who needs to have choice in their foods due to medical reasons like food allergies, diabetes, celiac, etc would just be out of luck. Because honestly that's what happens now on programs like WIC and with food banks - the cheapest foods and most commonly given out are usually those full of gluten, sugar, or with one of the top 8 allergens. People like my daughter and myself would be out of luck and go hungry. 

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Children should be removed because their parents are poor? Not all poor people are irresponsible. Many are good parents. I'd be shocked if the statistics proved that most poor are irresponsible. That has definitely not been what I've seen.

 

 

 

I never said that.  I said if we were all given 20K let's say and some parents decided it's time to party and not feed the kids, not clothe the kids, etc, etc.  

 

I do not think poverty is a barrier to being a good parent.  I think selfish irresponsibility and refusing to change to become a caring more responsible person is.  As other posters have said,  there are certainly many clients of the Children's services that refuse to change their neglectful or abusive ways no matter how many chances they get.  

 

ANd yes, I have met children who were being neglected by parents- where food stamps were traded for cigs, drugs, alcohol or whatever but not providing food for their children.  It doesn't make any difference whether those neglectful parents got in kind assistance or basic money.  They aren't going to care for their kids either way.  ANd when they are drugged, drunk, or both and trading their benefits for those things or cash to buy those things or maybe buy something else that makes no sense instead of food and diapers, the only difference is that separate programs both cost more administratively and are more punitive to otherwise responsible poor people.  

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Re the bold and the "most countries" comment - first of all, the standard of living that most low-income Americans enjoy is in many ways far higher than that enjoyed by low-income or even average-income people in "most countries" with which Americans like to compare our system.  The average amount of space, big toys, and various goodies are quite extravagant by worldwide standards.  In most US locations, a family "only" bringing in $30-40K a year plus having a UBI would be sitting pretty by developed world standards.

 

I thought a main argument for a UBI was to enable a parent to stay home if the child for any reason did not qualify for [affordable-to-that-family] child care / day school.  If that is the case, then why would a family receiving UBI need expensive daycare?

 

Generally speaking, it is better to compare with other "first world" countries than with the whole world.

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I never said that.  I said if we were all given 20K let's say and some parents decided it's time to party and not feed the kids, not clothe the kids, etc, etc.  

 

I do not think poverty is a barrier to being a good parent.  I think selfish irresponsibility and refusing to change to become a caring more responsible person is.  As other posters have said,  there are certainly many clients of the Children's services that refuse to change their neglectful or abusive ways no matter how many chances they get.  

 

ANd yes, I have met children who were being neglected by parents- where food stamps were traded for cigs, drugs, alcohol or whatever but not providing food for their children.  It doesn't make any difference whether those neglectful parents got in kind assistance or basic money.  They aren't going to care for their kids either way.  ANd when they are drugged, drunk, or both and trading their benefits for those things or cash to buy those things or maybe buy something else that makes no sense instead of food and diapers, the only difference is that separate programs both cost more administratively and are more punitive to otherwise responsible poor people.  

 

Ugh, it was in response more to a few responses, which at that point, culminated with yours. Neglect is completely different than simply being poor.

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I don't see a real solution.  People are going to continue to use drugs to their own ruination and worse to the ruination of their children.  I think drug use needs to be a deal breaker for keeping one's children.  I know someone will say well what about alcohol abuse and RX drug abuse.  Maybe we could just start with the illegal drugs and see how it goes.

 

 

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Why should anyone get no strings attached money when there is a McDonald's on every corner offering that? If one cannot do the simple work required there, how can he do the monstrous task of being a parent? I am not talking about those with severe disabilities who have sharp, drug-free minds. I am talking about the parent who I see coming into the ER who is already stoned, cigarettes are falling out of her purse, and her two young children are dirty, obviously sick and coughing, but, she checks herself in to get pain medicine for her chronic back problems. I see this more often than one can imagine. To think anyone would want to give this parent an unlimited bank account to become a professional doctor shopper disgusts me. Suddenly, we would see everyone in this state having even more children to keep up the profits and drugs.

 

I would prefer to see parental rights taken away very early when these children are more likely to be adopted. There is no reason to make a young child face another day of this type of neglect. And there is no way this young child should have to give this type of parent a second chance.

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The thing about drug addict parents....it is fairly easy to monitor.  My friend who just fostered to adopt....that bio mom had to be drug tested before every supervised visit.  Didn't take her a month out of rehab to fail.  The judge was very very stern with her and told her this was her last chance.  Another failed drug test and they would move toward termination of her parental rights.  A few weeks later she relinquished her rights. Even so the child was in foster care for over a year.  And before that had lived the first 8 years of her life with a drug addict mother in a horrible environment.

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I don't see a real solution.  People are going to continue to use drugs to their own ruination and worse to the ruination of their children.  I think drug use needs to be a deal breaker for keeping one's children.  I know someone will say well what about alcohol abuse and RX drug abuse.  Maybe we could just start with the illegal drugs and see how it goes.

I have been surprised to learn how many responsible parents--as measured by the kids are educated, fed, participate in Little League and Scouting, attend church regularly, live an upper-middle class lifestyle--use illegal drugs.  If illegal drug use was a deal breaker for keeping one's children, I think many children would be removed from their homes.  Of course, that would depend upon what state you live in...

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I have been surprised to learn how many responsible parents--as measured by the kids are educated, fed, participate in Little League and Scouting, attend church regularly, live an upper-middle class lifestyle--use illegal drugs. If illegal drug use was a deal breaker for keeping one's children, I think many children would be removed from their homes. Of course, that would depend upon what state you live in...

Indeed. Rich people use illegal drugs all the time. Because again, the rich people vs poor people is not some difference in species. They are both just people and better off financially people are not really as different or better or more deserving than those who are worse off economically.

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I have been surprised to learn how many responsible parents--as measured by the kids are educated, fed, participate in Little League and Scouting, attend church regularly, live an upper-middle class lifestyle--use illegal drugs. If illegal drug use was a deal breaker for keeping one's children, I think many children would be removed from their homes. Of course, that would depend upon what state you live in...

Oh certainly, drug abuse is a wealthy past time as much as poor. But if it is severe enough it will drive even an upper class person into the gutter.

 

Last night I was driving to the store with DD4 and as we were crossing the busy overpass there was a newish clean Mercedes hatchback in the median lane right off the bridge. Cop was pulled behind him examining the man who was slumped over in the front seat. No accident, no injury, just fentanyl or heroine most likely. He looked very average and in good health and well off, but was splayed out for all of creation to see in the middle of a busy road because of his habit.

 

It was really uncomfortable, as watching passed out individuals usually is.

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I have been surprised to learn how many responsible parents--as measured by the kids are educated, fed, participate in Little League and Scouting, attend church regularly, live an upper-middle class lifestyle--use illegal drugs. If illegal drug use was a deal breaker for keeping one's children, I think many children would be removed from their homes. Of course, that would depend upon what state you live in...

I agree. I think the trick is to not allow social services to find Out you use illegal drugs or have other substance problems by being responsible enough in your parenting to avoid contact with them. Unfortunately illegal drug use of some substances results in terrible behavior that attracts the attention (rightly so ) of the authorities. And as mentioned upthread, "poor people " don't have the money or social safety net to hide drug abuse the way richer people might. If a richer person wants to be high all weekend, they can hire a sitter.

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Oh certainly, drug abuse is a wealthy past time as much as poor. But if it is severe enough it will drive even an upper class person into the gutter.

 

Last night I was driving to the store with DD4 and as we were crossing the busy overpass there was a newish clean Mercedes hatchback in the median lane right off the bridge. Cop was pulled behind him examining the man who was slumped over in the front seat. No accident, no injury, just fentanyl or heroine most likely. He looked very average and in good health and well off, but was splayed out for all of creation to see in the middle of a busy road because of his habit.

 

It was really uncomfortable, as watching passed out individuals usually is.

 

Or heart attack, or stroke, or diabetic issue, or....

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A universal basic income won't fix some problems. There are some that can't be fixed. But it would fix the problem of responsible people who find themselves in unworkable circumstances. (not the only solution of course). 

 

Then it would be easier to weed out the ones that just can't be helped, and get their kids into somewhere better. 

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Except said clinics will quickly devolve into overbooked pass the buck models. Just like most low income clinics are currently. 

 

And I guess under your ideas, anyone who needs to have choice in their foods due to medical reasons like food allergies, diabetes, celiac, etc would just be out of luck. Because honestly that's what happens now on programs like WIC and with food banks - the cheapest foods and most commonly given out are usually those full of gluten, sugar, or with one of the top 8 allergens. People like my daughter and myself would be out of luck and go hungry. 

 

WIC has milk/soy milk, various whole grains, canned fish, a fruit and veg. allowance, milk, cheese, tofu, juice, eggs, yogurt, peanut butter, and beans.

 

Not much sugar, really.  What I wish they'd do is allow alternatives to soy milk (fortified almond, cashew, rice, etc.) and dairy cheese, alternatives to peanut butter (almond butter, sunflower butter, etc.), and get rid of the yogurt allowance entirely except for plain.

 

I was on WIC for a while and found it somewhat cumbersome but completely welcome.  I wish food stamps were run like WIC - I think you'd get more people willing to support them, and less abuse (although of course people still sell their WIC checks for cash).

 

Now food banks are another matter.  I don't know how you'd regulate what people donate freely, though.

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Thanks, Whitehawk. I was just about to post that quote.

 

And really, even if you're so sure that you're "not supposed" to live on minimum wage - people are doing it. People are doing it right now, trying to support families on two jobs per adult, minimum wage.

 

Cop was pulled behind him examining the man who was slumped over in the front seat. No accident, no injury, just fentanyl or heroine most likely. He looked very average and in good health and well off, but was splayed out for all of creation to see in the middle of a busy road because of his habit.

 

Or maybe he had had a heart attack, or a stroke, or a migraine (yup, happened to my mother once, she says it hit her like a hammer and she had to pull over and cover her eyes for a few hours before she could make her way home), or a seizure, or...!

 

To think anyone would want to give this parent an unlimited bank account to become a professional doctor shopper disgusts me.

 

Who said "unlimited"? Don't make things up.

 

Yes, but clearly not a single person in this thread has done that, because you are still posting on your computer with your (probably) non-dial up connection, sitting in your chair instead of the cheapest folding one you could find at the thrift store, wearing a shirt.

 

I can all but guarantee that at least one person on this thread is posting from a public library.

 

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Oh certainly, drug abuse is a wealthy past time as much as poor. But if it is severe enough it will drive even an upper class person into the gutter.

 

Last night I was driving to the store with DD4 and as we were crossing the busy overpass there was a newish clean Mercedes hatchback in the median lane right off the bridge. Cop was pulled behind him examining the man who was slumped over in the front seat. No accident, no injury, just fentanyl or heroine most likely. He looked very average and in good health and well off, but was splayed out for all of creation to see in the middle of a busy road because of his habit.

 

It was really uncomfortable, as watching passed out individuals usually is.

There is no reason from your description to presume that man was a drug addict, regardless of his car. He might have been, but it's just as likely any other number of reasons. I can't even figure why it would be uncomfortable to anyone else beyond being sad I couldn't help.

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WIC has milk/soy milk, various whole grains, canned fish, a fruit and veg. allowance, milk, cheese, tofu, juice, eggs, yogurt, peanut butter, and beans.

 

Not much sugar, really.  What I wish they'd do is allow alternatives to soy milk (fortified almond, cashew, rice, etc.) and dairy cheese, alternatives to peanut butter (almond butter, sunflower butter, etc.), and get rid of the yogurt allowance entirely except for plain.

 

I was on WIC for a while and found it somewhat cumbersome but completely welcome.  I wish food stamps were run like WIC - I think you'd get more people willing to support them, and less abuse (although of course people still sell their WIC checks for cash).

 

Now food banks are another matter.  I don't know how you'd regulate what people donate freely, though.

 

Okay, let's use WIC as an example. Out of that food package, my daughter and I would be able to eat: Eggs, Juice, fruits and veg and maybe the cheese {in moderation}. IF they have a Gluten free cereal option {one that's actually really GF}, then maybe that as well in moderation. Everything else there is something we have an allergy or intolerance to. If we rely'd on a WIC like food package? We'd very quickly develop nutritional deficiencies. Not to mention if I don't get a high protein / low carb diet I literally feel like crud and suffer joint pain, making it nearly impossible for me to work or do daily tasks. 

 

One size fits all models don't work. It's a proven fact. Even food pantries are shifting away from that model into a more client choice type model where they identify specific needs of the clients's family and try to offer options to meet THOSE needs. 

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Or heart attack, or stroke, or diabetic issue, or....

No, not at all. I know what a naloxone kit looks like, from board of Pharma experience, unfortunately. We lobbied to pass a law that all first responders need to carry them and people can obtain them without a prescription to aid family. The story around here in the EMT scene is mounting frustration on having to dose the same people several dozen times, as Ohio has a similar law and its reached crisis point in Dayton.

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No, not at all. I know what a naloxone kit looks like, from board of Pharma experience, unfortunately.

It looks like a medical package with some kind of injection stuff in it. Unless you were close enough to read the needle or vial labels, it could have been any number of things. My husband's emergency diabetes kit looks similiar to it. An epi kit looks similiar too.

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Edited to try and be nice.

 

My point was that this individual wasn't poor, the drug thing isn't a poverty issue. In this case he was at least middle class. It's not dissimilar to the speed addict soccer moms in California. You'd never guess PTA super mom was mainlining her kid's ritalin or amphetamines, and then using xanax to sleep at night, but it was shockingly common.

 

 

 

 

But suuuuure, lets go with a bad hypo...

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Our tap water is not drinkable! I have to buy bottles and gallons. I prefer gallons, but sometimes we need a case of bottles.

 

I see parents misusing food stamps, not selling for drugs, and unable to feed the kids (I'm not talking standard American vs whatever version of healthy you're into. I'm talking literal bags of candy, ice cream, brownies, chips, and snack cake type foods taking up more than 95% of the monthly budget).

 

A WIC-like SNAP system could help the above. But not those with allergies, intolerances, or even just preferences.

 

I used to believe my type of poor was the majority. But I don't know anymore. You can go to Walmart at midnight when food stamps refills and it's insane. If you go shopping the first week of food stamps you can pick out who will be using food stamps and who is not likely to be.

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You can go to Walmart at midnight when food stamps refills and it's insane. If you go shopping the first week of food stamps you can pick out who will be using food stamps and who is not likely to be.

This all sets up people in habits that take generations to break.

 

I used to work in a medical office where almost everyone made $8/hr. It was more than minimum wage, standard for that work in that area. We got paid every 2 weeks. On payday, everyone in the office went out for lunch, then they ate out at Chili's type/cost places that weekend. By the Thursday before payday, literally every person in that office had ramen for lunch. Every.single.paycheck.cycle. Feast or famine. And such a hard cycle to break.

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Okay, let's use WIC as an example. Out of that food package, my daughter and I would be able to eat: Eggs, Juice, fruits and veg and maybe the cheese {in moderation}. IF they have a Gluten free cereal option {one that's actually really GF}, then maybe that as well in moderation. Everything else there is something we have an allergy or intolerance to. If we rely'd on a WIC like food package? We'd very quickly develop nutritional deficiencies. Not to mention if I don't get a high protein / low carb diet I literally feel like crud and suffer joint pain, making it nearly impossible for me to work or do daily tasks. 

 

One size fits all models don't work. It's a proven fact. Even food pantries are shifting away from that model into a more client choice type model where they identify specific needs of the clients's family and try to offer options to meet THOSE needs. 

 

You could have people with necessary alterations submit a doctor's note or something to that effect (as you can now with WIC,  I think, if you need a special kind of baby formula).  

 

It would be hard to survive on a budget with a diet that could not include either beans or rice, though.

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I can all but guarantee that at least one person on this thread is posting from a public library.

 

Having access to a public library with air conditioning, heat, computers, drinking water, flushing toilets, sanitary hand washing stations, a working computer, and the internet, is almost certainly above average in terms of world standards of living.  That person would also have to lower her standard of living to satisfy the moral burden of sharing resources until everyone is equal.

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Those poor people socialize eating at crappy franchise restaurants twice a month and buying ice cream at midnight after work once a month. How dare they even ocassionally imitate what their betters do all the freaking time.

 

I don't care if someone on food stamps buys a gallon of ice cream. It's just about the only mental health service my crappy state has available to them, so for the love of God and neighbor, I say let them have the damn ice cream. Buy 2 if it helps get through another craptastic day in poverty! It's cheaper than paying living wages and we absolutely don't want to do anything crazy like that.

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Those poor people socialize eating at crappy franchise restaurants twice a month and buying ice cream at midnight after work once a month. How dare they even ocassionally imitate what their betters do all the freaking time.

 

I don't care if someone on food stamps buys a gallon of ice cream. It's just about the only mental health service my crappy state has available to them, so for the love of God and neighbor, I say let them have the damn ice cream. Buy 2 if it helps get through another craptastic day in poverty! It's cheaper than paying living wages and we absolutely don't want to do anything crazy like that.

 

Exactly. Well said. 

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I'm all for a living wage; the best way to raise wages, though, would be to reduce the workforce - when people were expected to support a family on only one income (so that the minimum wage was a living wage, instead of two minimum wages combined being a minimum wage), married women largely did not  work outside the home.  Single parent families were also less common because people were encouraged, by law and by social structure, to stay married (this is a lot more efficient allocation of resources, too, rather than having two households for a divorced family).  

 

We pay a living wage plus when we employ people, and for a job that doesn't even require a high school diploma, because I do believe in paying a living wage.

 

As for ice cream, no, I don't want my tax dollars spent on ice cream, or other unhealthy foods that contribute to the rising obesity epidemic that costs more of my tax dollars in healthcare and afflicts the poor more than the rich.

 

I don't mind giving money (or ice cream) to people who need or want it - I am happy to give a homeless person $20 and don't care whether he spends it on cigarettes or crackers or beer or salad.  I bristle when someone says I must give the homeless guy $20 for ice cream and cannot stipulate that he spend it on beans and rice or at least whole wheat tortillas or canned tuna or something.

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I'm all for a living wage; the best way to raise wages, though, would be to reduce the workforce - when people were expected to support a family on only one income (so that the minimum wage was a living wage, instead of two minimum wages combined being a minimum wage), married women largely did not  work outside the home.  Single parent families were also less common because people were encouraged, by law and by social structure, to stay married (this is a lot more efficient allocation of resources, too, rather than having two households for a divorced family).  

 

We pay a living wage plus when we employ people, and for a job that doesn't even require a high school diploma, because I do believe in paying a living wage.

 

As for ice cream, no, I don't want my tax dollars spent on ice cream, or other unhealthy foods that contribute to the rising obesity epidemic that costs more of my tax dollars in healthcare and afflicts the poor more than the rich.

 

I don't mind giving money (or ice cream) to people who need or want it - I am happy to give a homeless person $20 and don't care whether he spends it on cigarettes or crackers or beer or salad.  I bristle when someone says I must give the homeless guy $20 for ice cream and cannot stipulate that he spend it on beans and rice or at least whole wheat tortillas or canned tuna or something.

 

FWIW the only one parent working as a standard is a bit of myth and it has never been the norm at all socioeconomic levels, although it did look differently in a more agrarian society.

Edited by ChocolateReignRemix
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I'm all for a living wage; the best way to raise wages, though, would be to reduce the workforce - when people were expected to support a family on only one income (so that the minimum wage was a living wage, instead of two minimum wages combined being a minimum wage), married women largely did not work outside the home. Single parent families were also less common because people were encouraged, by law and by social structure, to stay married (this is a lot more efficient allocation of resources, too, rather than having two households for a divorced family).

 

We pay a living wage plus when we employ people, and for a job that doesn't even require a high school diploma, because I do believe in paying a living wage.

 

As for ice cream, no, I don't want my tax dollars spent on ice cream, or other unhealthy foods that contribute to the rising obesity epidemic that costs more of my tax dollars in healthcare and afflicts the poor more than the rich.

 

I don't mind giving money (or ice cream) to people who need or want it - I am happy to give a homeless person $20 and don't care whether he spends it on cigarettes or crackers or beer or salad. I bristle when someone says I must give the homeless guy $20 for ice cream and cannot stipulate that he spend it on beans and rice or at least whole wheat tortillas or canned tuna or something.

It is not your money once the government under which you live collects it as taxes.

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