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kedo1981
16th October 2007, 07:56 AM
Where are all the poor people?
I’ve been musing on another previous thread “Living paycheck to paycheck”
I’ve been there, and even though now I work for one of the worlds major corps and make a decent wage, sometimes I’m down to 10 bucks in the account at the end of the pay cycle.

But if I look at it, It’s more because I spent 150 bucs on new SDram or took the wife and kids out for 80 dollar dinner. Is that really living payday to payday?
How many “poor" are living that way because they spent their last $40 partying over the weekend?

JoeEllison
16th October 2007, 08:02 AM
Where are all the poor people?
I’ve been musing on another previous thread “Living paycheck to paycheck”
I’ve been there, and even though now I work for one of the worlds major corps and make a decent wage, sometimes I’m down to 10 bucks in the account at the end of the pay cycle.

But if I look at it, It’s more because I spent 150 bucs on new SDram or took the wife and kids out for 80 dollar dinner. Is that really living payday to payday?
How many “poor" are living that way because they spent their last $40 partying over the weekend?

I think that there are two separate issues here:

1) most people don't consider "plenty of money spent unwisely" as being the definition of "poor"

2) there's something a little weird about condemning people for spending $40 on a non-essential thing.

Damien Evans
16th October 2007, 08:03 AM
In answer to the title, mostly Africa and Asia.

And no, I wouldn't say you're living paycheck to paycheck

Dancing David
16th October 2007, 08:22 AM
Poverty has many reasons, lack of pay that covers expenses, high expenses in the community etc.

People who live in poverty often make the same choices that people who don't live in poverty do. They just happen to have worse opportunities when they live in poverty.

frankvan
16th October 2007, 08:26 AM
Among the real "poor" in this country are the 47 milllion who are without health care insurance, who have to choose between filling their prescriptions and eating. Anyone trying to survive on a minmum wage job, or two, and raising a child, or two?? Anyone having trouble finding the "poor" just don't know where to look. Ask around the homeless shelters, the Salvation Army, Goodwill Industries, any neighborhood church or temple, etc.

tkingdoll
16th October 2007, 08:42 AM
You don't see the poor because they aren't going to the same shops and restaurants as you. Have some data:

http://www.oxfamgb.org/ukpp/poverty/thefacts.htm

slingblade
16th October 2007, 09:34 AM
I wish I could post that Lolcat that's captioned "Here! I is hiding!"

I have some stuff right now that a poor person shouldn't have; I have it because I was going to college, was getting student loans, and used a little to buy things I'd never had, and things I really needed. I bought a freezer, and a computer. And an upper plate. I don't have a lower. Not likely to get one, either. And none of those things is really paid for yet--I still have to pay back the loan debt. I've no idea how, as my plans to get a good job are pretty much gone, now.

"Poor" and "poverty" are relative terms. If you compare my lifestyle to that of impoverished persons in certain other countries, I'm freaking wealthy! But not in the country where I actually do live. Here, I'm struggling very hard.

I don't go to the movies or out to dinner. Sometimes I have fast-food...I won't get kicked out of the Po' People's Club for an occasional Quarter-Pounder, will I?

Dancing David
16th October 2007, 09:58 AM
Among the real "poor" in this country are the 47 milllion who are without health care insurance, who have to choose between filling their prescriptions and eating. Anyone trying to survive on a minmum wage job, or two, and raising a child, or two?? Anyone having trouble finding the "poor" just don't know where to look. Ask around the homeless shelters, the Salvation Army, Goodwill Industries, any neighborhood church or temple, etc.


Also the subsidised housing for the elderly or the lederly in general. The medicare perscription part D helped some but not enough. The elderly are frequently in poverty. Then there are many families with children who live in poverty. They may or may not have a car, they may be able to live some place that is affordable if they are lucky.

WildCat
16th October 2007, 12:48 PM
Then there are many families with children who live in poverty.
I'll never understand why people have kids they can't afford to feed and clothe. One child may well be an accident, but 3, 4, or 5? That's just irresponsible.

Daylight
16th October 2007, 12:59 PM
The reason it’s hard to find the poor is those in power call them something else. That’s your problem.

Who knows what they are called this week, maybe “Dollar Challenged” or “Anti-wealthy Dispositioned”? So there are no longer any poor folk. And with no poor folk that means the economy is doing great!

sinclairmcevoy
16th October 2007, 01:36 PM
I'll never understand why people have kids they can't afford to feed and clothe. One child may well be an accident, but 3, 4, or 5? That's just irresponsible.Yes. Irresponsible. I do know people, not many, who keep having kids because they get more government assistance. These same people whine about not having enough money. The government doesn't give me enough. How can I work when I'm a single parent with 3 kids? Why should I work when I get paid to stay home and raise more welfare dependant people? Round and round it goes. Not always an accident.

Ziggurat
16th October 2007, 02:48 PM
Among the real "poor" in this country are the 47 milllion who are without health care insurance, who have to choose between filling their prescriptions and eating.

There are not 47 million people who have to choose between filling perscriptions and eating. A big fraction of that 47 million is people who qualify for various government programs but don't sign up, and another big fraction is young people who could afford it (they might have to cut back on ammenities) but choose not to because they're healthy and would rather pocket the money they don't expect to need to spend. I have no doubt a good number of poor exist, and life is surely hard for them, but let's not make things up, shall we?

Gurdur
16th October 2007, 02:55 PM
There are not 47 million people who have to choose between filling perscriptions and eating. A big fraction of that 47 million is people who qualify for various government programs but don't sign up, and another big fraction is young people who could afford it (they might have to cut back on ammenities) but choose not to because they're healthy and would rather pocket the money they don't expect to need to spend. I have no doubt a good number of poor exist, and life is surely hard for them, but let's not make things up, shall we?

Stats please. Anything in the way of evidence and concrete numbers analysis would be grand.

Ziggurat
16th October 2007, 02:55 PM
The reason it’s hard to find the poor is those in power call them something else. That’s your problem.

Who do you mean by "those in power"? There are many forms of power, many people who have those various forms of power, and many competing interests among them. Included in that is many people in positions of power who have reason to exagerate the number of poor and/or the severity of the problems they face. Government welfare agencies, for example, would undercut their own funding and staffing levels if they actually managed to fix the problem of poverty. And creating dependency on a welfare state is a pretty successful method of maintaining political power for elected officials as well.

kedo1981
16th October 2007, 03:15 PM
I don’t buy the “no health insurance =poverty” BS.
You can spend your entire life without having a medical problem.
So if you’re one of those lucky few, you could easily live well on a lot less than most would find acceptable.

Can an able-bodied man or woman, say age 25, no kids; ever be considered to be poor?

“Poor” has been turned into a definition that ignores the reality, not crack head is poor, their kids are, but the CH is spending more than enough money on drugs than it would take to give the kids a descent life.

Ziggurat
16th October 2007, 03:19 PM
Stats please. Anything in the way of evidence and concrete numbers analysis would be grand.

Why didn't you ask frankvan where he got the number of 47 million people having to choose between filling perscriptions and eating? But since you want some numbers, here's one source:

http://aspe.hhs.gov/health/reports/05/uninsured-cps/index.htm

According to this, there were 46 million people without insurance in the US in 2005. This number includes people who have no insurance regardless of the reason they don't. Breakdowns by demographics show there are significant numbers of people well above the poverty line without insurance, and the uninsured are disproportionately young adults (only about 1% of uninsured people were above 65). About half of the uninsured are only temporarily so, and only a quarter of the uninsured are below the poverty line. And my personal experience backs it up too: my brother's girlfriend didn't have insurance because she didn't want to spend the money on it, being young and healthy, and my father-in-law didn't have health insurance because he self-insured.

There are not 47 million people faced with a choice between buying perscriptions and buying food. And I do not understand why I'm the one being challenged for not accepting that ridiculous characterization, rather than frankvan for making a claim that was so transparently absurd to begin with.

cloudshipsrule
16th October 2007, 03:24 PM
How many of those 47 million have satellite TV? No-one in the US has to go hungry, as welfare will provide food for a family.

Some people are simply down on their luck and need help getting back on their feet, but for every one of those cases there is someone being lazy and simply relying on everyone else to provide their needs.

The health care system obviously needs to be 'fixed' in the US in terms of affordablility, but that is a separate issue.

People who are poor in the US are wealthy compared to many in 3rd world countries.

I can't help but wonder how many of the 47 million aren't actually poor, but simply choose to spend their money on things other than health care savings accounts.

slingblade
16th October 2007, 03:25 PM
Yes. Irresponsible. I do know people, not many, who keep having kids because they get more government assistance. These same people whine about not having enough money. The government doesn't give me enough. How can I work when I'm a single parent with 3 kids? Why should I work when I get paid to stay home and raise more welfare dependant people? Round and round it goes. Not always an accident.


Actually, I don't think this is true anymore. I do believe (but could be mistaken) that not too many years ago, the feds put a cap on how many kids you'd actually get benefits for, regardless of how many you had. Three, I think. That way, if people were having kids just to get bigger checks, it wouldn't work out, and those people who think welfare recipients have children just to get bigger checks would shut up about it.

tkingdoll
16th October 2007, 04:19 PM
How many of those 47 million have satellite TV? No-one in the US has to go hungry, as welfare will provide food for a family.

Some people are simply down on their luck and need help getting back on their feet, but for every one of those cases there is someone being lazy and simply relying on everyone else to provide their needs.

The health care system obviously needs to be 'fixed' in the US in terms of affordablility, but that is a separate issue.

People who are poor in the US are wealthy compared to many in 3rd world countries.

I can't help but wonder how many of the 47 million aren't actually poor, but simply choose to spend their money on things other than health care savings accounts.

Some of them, no doubt. But poverty is a trap. Have you ever lived it? I have, I grew up in extreme poverty by UK standards (by which I mean we didn't have electricity or hot water for much of the time, no phone, no car, and my parents had to resort to less...er...legal activities to feed their kids when times were very tough, which was not infrequent.

However, they both smoked. Irresponsible? Yes, absolutely. More so when they had to go grubbing through the ashtrays to make a rollup out of the 'dog ends' of their old discarded cigarettes. That's not a good role model for a child and wasting money on cigarettes when you are that poor is reckless and unethical. But they were good people and had almost no other pleasures in life, and of course were addicted so not entirely in control.

It's not so straightforward, really. Go there yourself and see.

Ziggurat
16th October 2007, 04:44 PM
I can't help but wonder how many of the 47 million aren't actually poor, but simply choose to spend their money on things other than health care savings accounts.

You don't have to wonder. It's in the link I gave. Only 25% of the uninsured are below the poverty line.

cloudshipsrule
16th October 2007, 04:48 PM
tkingdoll,

I understand what you're saying.

In my town I tend to put lower income individuals in two groups, and by no means do I think there aren't exceptions, I just haven't seen any yet.

The first group lives in a very humble trailer or tin-roof home, but there is always a satellite dish pointing towards the sky and a fairly nice vehicle in the driveway. Perhaps someone is providing these items for the individuals living there? If not, clearly there is some disposable income. (When I say fairly nice car, I mean the car in the driveway is worth more than some of the cars people I work with own, and I'm not hurting for money. If need be, the individual who owns the car could make do with less of a car if money was a problem.

The second group would simply be the homeless individuals. There is no indication that these people have any disposable income, and I'd say they would better fit the description of 'poor' from a monetary definition.

Regardless of reason, I can imagine that being raised at poverty level would make it hard to see reason or find a solution to escape such poverty. Education is probably one of the most important tools at societies disposal.

Kiosk
16th October 2007, 04:51 PM
No, tkingdoll, you don't understand. Allowing oneself a moment of pleasure amid the working week is utterly unacceptable. The poor must live a grey, renunciant life of grinding tedium, or earn the disapproval of those who work the same hours, yet regularly spend 150 bucks on new SDram, and take the wife and kids out for an 80 dollar dinner, then complain that they've only got enough left to fill up the tank.

Bloody whiners, the poor. If they didn't want to be poor, they should have gone to work for a merchant bank. If everyone did that, the country would be awash with money, there would be no poor people at all, and robots would clean the toilets, mend the roads, and wheel things around in hospitals. Don't you even know that? Duh, learn some economics.

Poor? Losers, I call them. Let them eat cake.

cloudshipsrule
16th October 2007, 05:01 PM
Let them eat cake.

I think we should all pitch in to buy them cake to eat.

JoeEllison
16th October 2007, 05:07 PM
Does anyone know how much insurance costs? One of the perks of better paying jobs is employer-provided insurance. Yeah, many uninsured people live "above the poverty line"... but how far under the line would insurance put them? Making more than poverty wages doesn't magically mean that you can afford insurance if your employer doesn't help pay for it.

I went to www.ehealthinsurance.com, and got some rate quotes for a family of 4. The average looked to be around $400 a month give or take. That's at least a tenth of the pre-tax income of the bottom half of American households. That doesn't exactly leave a lot of money for FSAs, let alone savings accounts, investing, or anything else.

casebro
16th October 2007, 05:13 PM
Life is good here in America.

All I need to do to remind me of that is take a stroll through the local auto junkyard. Most of the cars look like they just drove in. They look better than my own car that I'm looking for parts for. Even our poor don't have to drive dented, rusted cars. Life is good.

cloudshipsrule
16th October 2007, 05:15 PM
That's at least a tenth of the pre-tax income of the bottom half of American households. That doesn't exactly leave a lot of money for FSAs, let alone savings accounts, investing, or anything else.

If you consider after-tax earnings, I'd say 400/month is a lot more than 1/10th for millions of people.

Fnord
16th October 2007, 05:40 PM
Where are all the poor people?

Everywhere.

I ended up "poor" back in 1988-1990 because of three things:

1) Divorce, with associated legal fees, settlements and support payments.
2) Downsizing, with two week's pay as a parting gift.
3) Medical expenses.

Until I joined the Navy at the age of 33 in 1990, I lived wherever I could, worked whenever I could, and ate 2 fast-food meals every three days, on the average. Transportation was by bus, by bicycle, or on foot. I was poor. Working intermittantly, but poor.

The trouble is that my parents, siblings, and most of my relations and "friends" were in denial about it. I guess I didn't look enough like those basket people who collected empties and panhandled for their living.

The local shelters seemed to run out of room just before this reasonably healthy-looking white guy showed up. At least, they always said so.

I feel a rant coming on, so I'll just close with this: The Poor are all around you. Most try to put up a good front to keep from being treated badly by friends and family. The rest crawl off to hide in places that well-off people would never imagine existed ... or would dare to visit if they did.

TragicMonkey
16th October 2007, 06:04 PM
If you consider after-tax earnings, I'd say 400/month is a lot more than 1/10th for millions of people.

Even before-tax, that would be considered a nicely high salary in my part of the country.

TragicMonkey
16th October 2007, 06:11 PM
Oh, and as for insurance...it's not only about uninsurance. The underinsured are legion, and they usually don't even realize they are. You think you have good medical insurance? Your plan will pay the usual 80%? Okay. Now get cancer. Your treatment, over the years, is going to cost you say $500,000. (I'm not exaggerating here. I am in the biz, and I see the figures. Cancer is expensive.) What's 20% of half a million? Got that in your pocket? Oh, and did you read all the print in your insurance packet? Are there total dollar caps on what they'll pay out? Thank your gods for Medicaid, Medicare, and the kindness of health care providers who will cut you a deal and write off half your balance or accept payment plans of ridiculously miniscule amounts per month (yes, that's common practice. They know half is better than nothing, and good doctors will not let you die because you can't pay.)

There's a reason they call some illnesses "catastrophic". Even people with good insurance can go under because of one. Why do you think so many people declare bankruptcy? It's not always because they go nuts with their credit cards.

It's a lot easier to go on about "the poor" if you don't realize how easy it is to fall into being one yourself.

quixotecoyote
16th October 2007, 07:58 PM
It's a lot easier to go on about "the poor" if you don't realize how easy it is to fall into being one yourself.

When i was bill collecting, easily 75% of the cars I repossessed was because someone in the family became ill and they were losing everything to make medical payments.

It breaks your heart to get the call that now they can't take their kid to the hospital because you took their car.

JoeEllison
16th October 2007, 08:14 PM
If you consider after-tax earnings, I'd say 400/month is a lot more than 1/10th for millions of people.

THAT'S MY POINT!!!

JoeEllison
16th October 2007, 08:17 PM
It's a lot easier to go on about "the poor" if you don't realize how easy it is to fall into being one yourself.
That's at least half of the reason for the contempt that what's left of the middle class has for the working poor. In order to pretend that it cannot happen to them, they have to blame those less fortunate than themselves. If they admit that other people have it tough due even in part to circumstances out of their control, then they will also have to admit that they, too, could suffer that fate.

Esperdome
16th October 2007, 08:36 PM
One problem I see is helping those who truly need it and weeding out those who are just working the system.

I would like to think that our society is able to be compassionate to all poor, disabled, elderly, etc, who need it. But these people often are reluctant to take charity, (they have their pride, after all, and to many of them this is worth a great deal). And the hoops we force them to jump through to get aid are often quite drastic.

These hurdles are designed to weed out the scammers. But they rarely work. The scammers have all the angles figured out. It's their "job" to outsmart the system and take money needed by the true poor. It's this waste I abhor.

JoeEllison
16th October 2007, 08:39 PM
One problem I see is helping those who truly need it and weeding out those who are just working the system.

Here's where empathy comes into play: do you punish those who have a desperate and sometimes life-and-death need, because it is more important to make sure no one "plays the system"?

Esperdome
16th October 2007, 08:59 PM
Here's where empathy comes into play: do you punish those who have a desperate and sometimes life-and-death need, because it is more important to make sure no one "plays the system"?

A certain percentage will work the system no matter how stringent it is, and a certain percentage of needy will fall through the cracks no matter how lax it is. There is no happy medium, only a realistic one.

JoeEllison
16th October 2007, 09:00 PM
A certain percentage will work the system no matter how stringent it is, and a certain percentage of needy will fall through the cracks no matter how lax it is. There is no happy medium, only a realistic one.

The "realistic one" that very many people here seem to be supporting is NO SYSTEM.

Cain
16th October 2007, 09:08 PM
David Shipler had a pretty good on the poor a couple years ago. I remember getting something out of it... even though I cannot remember exactly what at the current moment.

JoeEllison
16th October 2007, 09:11 PM
David Shipler had a pretty good on the poor a couple years ago. I remember getting something out of it... even though I cannot remember exactly what at the current moment.

Universal health care? A new wage system? More equitable distribution of school funding?

Eck
16th October 2007, 10:32 PM
Can an able-bodied man or woman, say age 25, no kids; ever be considered to be poor?


Absolutely, homeless, unemployed and at a prime, productive age? It happens, though I'd venture it isn't even near the largest demographic if one looked at poverty statistics.

There are countless ways to fall into the ranks of the poor, and if one hits the extremes of poverty, there are any number of things that can make rising out of it so much harder. Securing decent work is hard without an adress, finding a home without an income to speak of equally so, and if one has slipped through the cracks of the social system and has little peer/family support then it is not so difficult to be poor, even without kids, even in one's 20's.

The Man
16th October 2007, 11:18 PM
I get paid once a month, at the beginning of the month I’m rich at the end of the month I’m poor. To see the poor just come visit me on the 23rd of any month.

But seriously, I have always had a dream of owning a house and land in the area I grew up in, fortunately it is a dream, like others, that I have been able to fulfill. Unfortunately, others, in some cases “poor”, were deluded so their dream is now a nightmare (see the thread on mortgage meltdown).

If you want to see the poor, just walk out your door with your eyes open. They are, most likely, your neighbors.

JoeEllison
16th October 2007, 11:38 PM
I get paid once a month, at the beginning of the month I’m rich at the end of the month I’m poor. To see the poor just come visit me on the 23rd of any month.

But seriously, I have always had a dream of owning a house and land in the area I grew up in, fortunately it is a dream, like others, that I have been able to fulfill. Unfortunately, others, in some cases “poor”, were deluded so their dream is now a nightmare (see the thread on mortgage meltdown).

If you want to see the poor, just walk out your door with your eyes open. They are, most likely, your neighbors.
No kidding. I live in a decent neighborhood, in a town considered to be relatively affluent, in one of the fastest growing areas of the past 5 years, nationally. The house next door to me has been foreclosed on, and there are "For Sale" signs everywhere I look. The prices for homes has dropped well over 10% in the last year alone. No one is buying these homes, either. People are renting homes at a significant loss just to avoid bankruptcy.

When I bought my home, the real estate agent was telling us that there were some 3500 properties listed, in a county of about 14,000 households. Not what I would call "stable".

Z
17th October 2007, 12:01 AM
I have to admit, I don't like it when someone complains about being 'poor' and they're driving a fairly new Japanese import with 'bling' all over it, eating a bacon double McWhopper Super Combo meal with fingers aglitter with rings and fancy French manicures.... while I'm unloading $15 in groceries that I HOPE will keep the family fed another week (Ramen again? Daaaaaad???) from a beat-up 20-year-old van that barely runs, no 'bling', no rings, no jewelry whatsoever....

I don't consider us 'poor' either, even if we do live below the poverty line, simply because we are buying our house, we DO own a vehicle (three, actually, but only one that runs), we DO have internet (though we get paid to maintain that via my son's home school program) and computers and a few low-expense luxuries.

But the poor are certainly out there. There's an older fellow, we'll call him Paul, who comes to my door about once a week asking if I have any odd jobs he can do for money. He's just turning 65, has diabetes, lives in a Section 8 apartment (and he's always behind 2-3 months on rent), and stops by my place on the way to the food bank at the corner Catholic church for a cup of cool water and (if I have anything) a light snack. During the summer, if we're doing better, he does the lawn for $20, and throws in some trimming and branch-cutting for an extra $5. In the winter, he offers to sweep the walkway (if he's healthy enough) for whatever we'll pay him.

Sometimes he has to have the money up-front, so he can turn around and pay half to someone else to rent their lawn mower.

He's clean, he's sober, he's hard-working. Doesn't smoke, doesn't eat fast food (can't afford it), and hasn't had power for the last 6 months. He rides the bus when he can get enough change together to do so, and uses the store just up the street from his place as a contact number for people looking for him. He's used up all available social service benefits - for some reason (and I don't know the whole story here), he doesn't even get Medicaid.

He's definitely poor, and there's nothing anyone can do for him (aside from charity).

Every time he drops by, I count my blessings to have what little I do have.

Hokulele
17th October 2007, 12:16 AM
On a related but definitely a side note, has any one read Pursuit of Happyness? It is an interesting take on poverty among those who are smart and hard-working.

JoeEllison
17th October 2007, 12:21 AM
On a related but definitely a side note, has any one read Pursuit of Happyness? It is an interesting take on poverty among those who are smart and hard-working.

Sorry... the movie was so clearly the story of a demented individual that I never bothered with the book... :D

Hokulele
17th October 2007, 12:36 AM
... I never bothered with the book... :D


Not enough pictures for you? ;)

JoeEllison
17th October 2007, 12:37 AM
Not enough pictures for you? ;)

Too much "Will Smith being a horrible father" for me. *shrugs*

Hokulele
17th October 2007, 12:43 AM
Too much "Will Smith being a horrible father" for me. *shrugs*


Just so you know, the book really doesn't have all that much in common with the movie (other than the title). Most of the book describes what happens before he has a child and goes through the whole job-search thing. It is actually a fairly grim book, and the main character really isn't all that likeable. It does give a good, hard look at life in poverty though.

JoeEllison
17th October 2007, 12:45 AM
Just so you know, the book really doesn't have all that much in common with the movie (other than the title). Most of the book describes what happens before he has a child and goes through the whole job-search thing. It is actually a fairly grim book, and the main character really isn't all that likable. It does give a good, hard look at life in poverty though.
So, in one sense, just like the movie? :D

I might give the book a try, eventually, once I get through the rather significant back-log of books laying around the house. :cool:

Hokulele
17th October 2007, 12:48 AM
So, in one sense, just like the movie? :D


To be honest, I haven't seen the movie. Although I do generally like Will Smith (Ali, hubba hubba!).

I might give the book a try, eventually, once I get through the rather significant back-log of books laying around the house. :cool:


Fair enough. :)

The Man
17th October 2007, 01:00 AM
On a related but definitely a side note, has any one read Pursuit of Happyness? It is an interesting take on poverty among those who are smart and hard-working.

Does anyone know where I can get the “cliff notes” online for this book? I have always believed in the adage “work smarter not harder”, at least that’s what my boss tells me.

JoeEllison
17th October 2007, 01:07 AM
Does anyone know where I can get the “cliff notes” online for this book? I have always believed in the adage “work smarter not harder”, at least that’s what my boss tells me.

Try Wikipedia?

The Man
17th October 2007, 01:17 AM
Try Wikipedia?

Thank you, I’ll try that.
Hopefully it has not been modified by Will Smith

Hokulele
17th October 2007, 01:17 AM
Does anyone know where I can get the “cliff notes” online for this book? I have always believed in the adage “work smarter not harder”, at least that’s what my boss tells me.


I'm not sure, I checked it out of the local library. It is a fast read though, you may not need the "cliff notes" to get through it. I would recommend looking at the reviews on the Amazon or Barnes & Nobles web sites.

Dancing David
17th October 2007, 04:48 AM
I'll never understand why people have kids they can't afford to feed and clothe. One child may well be an accident, but 3, 4, or 5? That's just irresponsible.

Quite true, the only caveat being that some women are in relationships where sex and children are part of a power and control mechanism on the part of their partner.

It is irresonsible that there are many places and people that don'r encourage the use of birth control.

TragicMonkey
17th October 2007, 04:51 AM
I know a poor woman with five kids. She only had two herself, then her sister up and died leaving three orphans. This lady now works two full-time jobs to support them all, but is still poor.

Don't look at someone and think you know their story.

Dancing David
17th October 2007, 04:53 AM
Yes. Irresponsible. I do know people, not many, who keep having kids because they get more government assistance. These same people whine about not having enough money. The government doesn't give me enough. How can I work when I'm a single parent with 3 kids? Why should I work when I get paid to stay home and raise more welfare dependant people? Round and round it goes. Not always an accident.


Really? It doesn't work that way in most states of the US anymore. As part of 'welfare reform' most states have a time limit on TANF (transitional assistance to needy families) and the cash amount that is recieved is rather small. Food stamps can be exploited for cash, but not at a profit. The benefit to having additional children is usually rather limited after welfare reform.

This theory does not explian the 'working poor' as well, who do limit their children and still have to work extra to not make ends meet.

When , where are these people who make money by having kids?

Dancing David
17th October 2007, 04:55 AM
There are not 47 million people who have to choose between filling perscriptions and eating. A big fraction of that 47 million is people who qualify for various government programs but don't sign up,

How do you figure that?

There are no government programs for people who are able bodied and have no children. So where did you get that statistic?

:)

and another big fraction is young people who could afford it (they might have to cut back on ammenities) but choose not to because they're healthy and would rather pocket the money they don't expect to need to spend. I have no doubt a good number of poor exist, and life is surely hard for them, but let's not make things up, shall we?

Dancing David
17th October 2007, 05:05 AM
Why didn't you ask frankvan where he got the number of 47 million people having to choose between filling perscriptions and eating? But since you want some numbers, here's one source:

http://aspe.hhs.gov/health/reports/05/uninsured-cps/index.htm

According to this, there were 46 million people without insurance in the US in 2005. This number includes people who have no insurance regardless of the reason they don't. Breakdowns by demographics show there are significant numbers of people well above the poverty line without insurance, and the uninsured are disproportionately young adults (only about 1% of uninsured people were above 65). About half of the uninsured are only temporarily so, and only a quarter of the uninsured are below the poverty line. And my personal experience backs it up too: my brother's girlfriend didn't have insurance because she didn't want to spend the money on it, being young and healthy, and my father-in-law didn't have health insurance because he self-insured.

There are not 47 million people faced with a choice between buying perscriptions and buying food. And I do not understand why I'm the one being challenged for not accepting that ridiculous characterization, rather than frankvan for making a claim that was so transparently absurd to begin with.


Thanks for the citation!

:)

The poverty line BTW is now considered to be 200% of the poverty line, not 100%. But where the poverty line is is kind of a football at the best of times.

I just have to wonedr about this statement:

but will have to read the article later to see where it comes from

Data from employers shows that average single coverage premiums for employer sponsored insurance represent 2.0% of income at 300% FPL, and average family coverage premiums represent 4.7% of income for a family of four at 300% FPL (with a higher percentage for smaller families).

Single coverage? That is the trick to this statement. When you get family coverage it has to be a lot higher. I know that in the case of my family it is more like 5%.

Dancing David
17th October 2007, 05:11 AM
How many of those 47 million have satellite TV? No-one in the US has to go hungry, as welfare will provide food for a family.

If you have children, you are more likely to get food stamps, but if you have no children then you will get $10. And the proportion of food stamps benefits is found through an arcane formula. The rent levels and payment of bills are still figured on statistics from the 1960s. So when they figure your disposable income, they figure your rent at about 15% of current values.


Some people are simply down on their luck and need help getting back on their feet, but for every one of those cases there is someone being lazy and simply relying on everyone else to provide their needs.

Since welfare reform and even before that is very hard to do.


The health care system obviously needs to be 'fixed' in the US in terms of affordablility, but that is a separate issue.

People who are poor in the US are wealthy compared to many in 3rd world countries.

I can't help but wonder how many of the 47 million aren't actually poor, but simply choose to spend their money on things other than health care savings accounts.

Having worked for minimum wage, i didn't have that much disposable income, after bills about $20 a pay, in the 1980s. So a healthcare savings account would have given me about $520 a year, if I never did anything. I already lived without a phone to save money. People at all income levels make poor choices.

GroundStrength
17th October 2007, 07:15 AM
Universal health care? A new wage system? More equitable distribution of school funding?

Marxisim.

billydkid
17th October 2007, 07:29 AM
Where are all the poor people?
I’ve been musing on another previous thread “Living paycheck to paycheck”
I’ve been there, and even though now I work for one of the worlds major corps and make a decent wage, sometimes I’m down to 10 bucks in the account at the end of the pay cycle.

But if I look at it, It’s more because I spent 150 bucs on new SDram or took the wife and kids out for 80 dollar dinner. Is that really living payday to payday?
How many “poor" are living that way because they spent their last $40 partying over the weekend?A fair portion of them live here in central NY - they work at Jiffy Stops during the day and as janitors at night.

shuize
17th October 2007, 07:47 AM
But the poor are certainly out there. There's an older fellow, we'll call him Paul, who comes to my door about once a week asking if I have any odd jobs he can do for money. He's just turning 65, has diabetes, lives in a Section 8 apartment (and he's always behind 2-3 months on rent), and stops by my place on the way to the food bank at the corner Catholic church for a cup of cool water and (if I have anything) a light snack. During the summer, if we're doing better, he does the lawn for $20, and throws in some trimming and branch-cutting for an extra $5. In the winter, he offers to sweep the walkway (if he's healthy enough) for whatever we'll pay him.

Sometimes he has to have the money up-front, so he can turn around and pay half to someone else to rent their lawn mower.

He's clean, he's sober, he's hard-working. Doesn't smoke, doesn't eat fast food (can't afford it), and hasn't had power for the last 6 months. He rides the bus when he can get enough change together to do so, and uses the store just up the street from his place as a contact number for people looking for him. He's used up all available social service benefits - for some reason (and I don't know the whole story here), he doesn't even get Medicaid.

He's definitely poor, and there's nothing anyone can do for him (aside from charity).

Every time he drops by, I count my blessings to have what little I do have.


I obviously don't know the guy, but I'm guessing there's more to his story. How does a sober, hard working individual manage to get to 65 without putting any money away for retirement? Does he not get social security? I can't help but think there were some seriously poor financial decisions along the way to end up in such a state.

Fnord
17th October 2007, 08:10 AM
(Bolding mine)

Quite true, the only caveat being that some women are in relationships where sex and children are part of a power and control mechanism on the part of their partner.

It is irresonsible that there are many places and people that don'r encourage the use of birth control.


It works both ways. I was dating a woman who had three kids, each by a different father. I found out that she was receiving child-support from no less than five men (some were married). Not only did I make a quick exit, but I turned her in.

She had been keeping the money coming in with threats of jail time and on-the-job harassment.

I still wonder how if any of those men were the real fathers of any of her children!

uruk
17th October 2007, 08:49 AM
I obviously don't know the guy, but I'm guessing there's more to his story. How does a sober, hard working individual manage to get to 65 without putting any money away for retirement? Does he not get social security? I can't help but think there were some seriously poor financial decisions along the way to end up in such a state.

He could have been working minimum wage jobs all of his life. Try saving money on minimum wage. Try investing money on minimum wage. How many employers had retirement or health insurance back in his day? Especially if the employers were not corporations.

It could have been the types of jobs he worked due to the level of education he had, maybe a serious medical problem. Nothing empties out the savings account like a bad illness or medical problem.

Perscription medicine prices are insane without some sort of medical insurance program.
Heck, I'm with Blue Cross Blue shield and my perscription copay is $35.00 a pop. And I have 3 perscriptions for colesterol, high blood pressure, and IBS (you don't want to know what IBS is) so that's $105.00 a month on drugs alone.

Dental bills cause heart attacks even with a dental plan. My wife and I had dental work done and we still owe the dentist nearly a thousand dollars and that is with my wife's dental plan.

My parents were sober and at least my mother was hard working. My father has cerebal palsy and, even though the condition was not that severe, he never worked for very long.
His disability had more to do with his upbringing (Missouri hillbilly) than is actual affliction.
My mother, whom I plan to nominate for sainthood, raised three huge sons and took care of a disabled husband all on the wage of a waitress with no highschool diploma.
And it took along time for her to set aside her pride and apply for welfare.
Needless to say my parents never were able to save money. They rely totaly on medicare/medicaide and social security (and whatever my brothers and I can afford to give)

Social security only pays my father $650.00 and $480.00 a month for my mother. And that's with disability. Medicare and medicaide provides for thier health care, but not all expenses.
There is a few thing they do not cover.

Do not, I repeat, Do not rely on social security to provide a living wage for you when you retire.


Poor is relative to the cost of living, and brother, it costs alot to live in this country.

Also the poor here are different than the poor in other countries. In other countries where the economic level is very low. the people know how to hunt, forage, farm and build thier neccesities. Over here our poor have none of those survival skills developed.

Anyhoo. There alot of reasons why a 65 year old guy with social security would have no money saved or not be able to save money.

Z
17th October 2007, 09:03 AM
I obviously don't know the guy, but I'm guessing there's more to his story. How does a sober, hard working individual manage to get to 65 without putting any money away for retirement? Does he not get social security? I can't help but think there were some seriously poor financial decisions along the way to end up in such a state.

Of course you can't - that's your worldview.

He put a lot of money away over the course of his life. As the years passed, he lost work, when his diabetes initially flared up and he (at the time) was unaware of the problem. He spent several years in and out of hospitals, paying for it out of his life's savings... which, eventually, ran out, what with medical bills, the funeral expenses for his wife and oldest son (both who died in car accidents), and other unforeseen incidents.

His social security is mostly eaten up in medicines and hospital costs because, for whatever reason, he doesn't qualify for any government subsidized health care. And he's too honest to not pay for his medical care - the idea of getting hospitalized and stiffing the hospital is completely contrary to his nature. Social security isn't enough to cover even basic living expenses any more, so that's no security to fall back on.

So now he's 65, too old to be hired by most companies locally; his skills are in the physical labor category - as a youth, he worked construction, painting, carpentry, metalworking, etc. In his now elderly and often frail condition, he'd be considered too much of a risk to hire on. He has no living family left, he's often too sick to even get out of bed (by great fortune, he has a friend, a nurse, who checks in on him every day or two out of the kindness of her heart), and he survives by making the rounds to the food banks, doing odd jobs for anyone willing to pay him a few dollars, and praying daily that his health holds and the weather isn't too viscious for him to work.

If contracting diabetes, having his family die off, and suffering a string of financial hardships, combined with getting old, constitutes poor financial decisions, then you may have a point. As it stands, however, that point seems to be invalid in his case.

shuize
19th October 2007, 01:28 PM
Of course you can't - that's your worldview.


Yes, silly me.

But, then again, in my "worldview" not buying adequate health insurance is a poor financial decision. You say he put away a lot of money in his life yet apparently did not do this.


His social security is mostly eaten up in medicines and hospital costs because, for whatever reason, he doesn't qualify for any government subsidized health care.


See, I think there's more to this. He's dirt poor and yet somehow does not qualify for government subsidized health care? That doesn't make any sense. If he's as poor as you say, he's exactly the kind of person such programs are design to help. If he will not take advantage of such a program out of pride, or at least try to figure out where the bureaucratic mix up is, then that's his choice. But I'd say it is another poor one.

shalomsteph
19th October 2007, 04:34 PM
I deliver Thanksgiving and Christmas meals to the needy in Kansas City, Kansas. Believe me, they are poor. A house with no working electricity or heat, broken windows patched with tape and plastic, sagging porches, holes in the external walls...

The first year my son went with me, we went up to one such house. The house was being heated with a fireplace in the living room. There was no other heat or light source to speak of. An elderly man came to the door with an obviously bad glaucoma. I was worried his porch would break from our weight, it was creaking so bad. "Praise the Lord" he said, "Be thankful for this beautiful day of thanksgiving! Be thankful that my feet hit the ground, that I have this hot food for my belly, and I have these wonderful people to bring it to me." My son, who was eight or nine at the time, reached out and shook his hand, "I am thankful for you, sir."

We got to the car, and I noticed he had completely broken down crying. "He has nothing, and he is THANKFUL!"

It took both of us a few minutes, in the warmth of our car, to just absorb that moment.

So--wanna know where the poor people are? Go outside of your comfort zone, and you will find them.

quixotecoyote
19th October 2007, 04:44 PM
I deliver Thanksgiving and Christmas meals to the needy in Kansas City, Kansas. Believe me, they are poor. A house with no working electricity or heat, broken windows patched with tape and plastic, sagging porches, holes in the external walls...

The first year my son went with me, we went up to one such house. The house was being heated with a fireplace in the living room. There was no other heat or light source to speak of. An elderly man came to the door with an obviously bad glaucoma. I was worried his porch would break from our weight, it was creaking so bad. "Praise the Lord" he said, "Be thankful for this beautiful day of thanksgiving! Be thankful that my feet hit the ground, that I have this hot food for my belly, and I have these wonderful people to bring it to me." My son, who was eight or nine at the time, reached out and shook his hand, "I am thankful for you, sir."

We got to the car, and I noticed he had completely broken down crying. "He has nothing, and he is THANKFUL!"

It took both of us a few minutes, in the warmth of our car, to just absorb that moment.

So--wanna know where the poor people are? Go outside of your comfort zone, and you will find them.

Nah, they probably didn't invest correctly or buy the right insurance. Let 'em starve.

shalomsteph
19th October 2007, 04:48 PM
(Bolding mine)




It works both ways. I was dating a woman who had three kids, each by a different father. I found out that she was receiving child-support from no less than five men (some were married). Not only did I make a quick exit, but I turned her in.

She had been keeping the money coming in with threats of jail time and on-the-job harassment.

I still wonder how if any of those men were the real fathers of any of her children!

How come none of them had requested a paternity test? That would knock out two of the "fathers", anyway.

I used to work in child support enforcement and yes, the rumor is true. If a woman has three children by three different men, she WILL get more child support than if she had three children with one man, or with an ex-husband. The trick is she has to be sure that it is the FIRST child he has to pay child support on...the first child of a father is the costliest. The rest are just a little extra.

Example: The absolute minimum amount of child support in Kansas (at the time I was working) was $283 per month for one child. For two children, it was $338. It was at weird, lesser increments for each child above that. So if a woman had three children with three DIFFERENT men, and that child were HIS first child, she would get a MINIMUM of $283 per child, per month. MUCH better--it really added up. Now, take the women who hung out at the med student parties?? They really were racking in the money by the time the kids were in pre-school.

cj.23
19th October 2007, 05:22 PM
I currently have about £15 to last me till payday (the 26th). I'm not poor though, I live in a decent (rented) house, have internet and am fairly well fed. I certainly don't have much money - I'm unemployed this week, but hey, I have a cheque coming for my last book and I'll get another contract. These things happen.

If I'm poor its because i choose to prioritise internet and phone, and spend on books. 15 years in college and no steady job for years have left there impact, but I don't actually owe anything, because i have never borrowed money and have no credit rating so can't if i want to now.

I guess I spend about £40 a week, mainly on food and internet, and paying utility bills. My rent and council tax takes up all my other usual income. I have not bought any clothes for a while, and use libraries quite a bit and buy second hand books.
I certainly go through periods of poverty when eating is difficult, but I'm in an odd catch 22 with regard to employment and state benefits, so I have to be a bit self reliant.

I'm still much better off than most of the worlds population though. :) Shame I live in a VERY rich town.

cj x

shalomsteph
20th October 2007, 03:20 AM
There are resource limits for government assistance. Owning a nice car or a second house, or even a retirement account can put you over the resource limit for Medicaid.

shuize
20th October 2007, 05:58 AM
There are resource limits for government assistance. Owning a nice car or a second house, or even a retirement account can put you over the resource limit for Medicaid.


If you're stupid enough to keep a second house while having to beg for food, then you deserve to go hungry.

Tokenconservative
20th October 2007, 06:12 AM
Where are all the poor people?
I’ve been musing on another previous thread “Living paycheck to paycheck”
I’ve been there, and even though now I work for one of the worlds major corps and make a decent wage, sometimes I’m down to 10 bucks in the account at the end of the pay cycle.

But if I look at it, It’s more because I spent 150 bucs on new SDram or took the wife and kids out for 80 dollar dinner. Is that really living payday to payday?
How many “poor" are living that way because they spent their last $40 partying over the weekend?


According to the left in America when they are trying to force socialized medicine on us, you are "poor" in America if you make $80,000 or less a year, but when it comes time to pay your income taxes and you make $80,000 or more, you are "rich."

We live in a country where the unemployment rate has hovered at what Keynesian economic models long said was an impossiblity (5% and below) and in which we are told that if we close our borders to the illegals flowing across in their tens of millions, the entire economy will collapse.

Still, the poverty pimps hafta make a living, too! You can't expect those who make their living by convincing guilty liberals (and the occasional stupid conservative) that tens of millions of American kids go to be "hungry" every night because their parents are so "poor" they can't afford to feed them, and that our streets are filled with destitute "homeless" families cruelly cast out of their "paycheck-to-paycheck" jobs by our collapsing economy--collapsing because, apparently, there are too MANY jobs.

All I gotta say is: it's gotta be tough to be a liberal. I mean, how on earth do you wrap your mind around such pretzelized logic?

Tokie

Tokenconservative
20th October 2007, 06:18 AM
If you're stupid enough to keep a second house while having to beg for food, then you deserve to go hungry.

I have two houses and I go hungry all the time.

'Specially right before Thanksgiving when I like to empty out the ol' gut in anticipation of the $200-$300 in food I am going to be filling said gut with over the next 4 days of pretty much nothing but eating, napping and staring at the widescreen.

Nobody--NObody--goes hungry in America because they simply cannot get food. In fact, among the "poor" (an ever-changing classification here) obesity caused by overeating and too little exercise, not genetic predisposition or heavymetals in "poor" neighborhoods or some such, is a major health concern for those who get "free" or assisted healthcare.

There has not been an case of actual starvation in America since the 1930s, and there were only a few then, before we did something about it. Any chile going to bed hungry today, is actually going to bed malnourished, and is doing so because of poor dietary choices by his or her parents.

In a country where "the poor" have, on average, 2 TVs and DVD/video players, a late model car, cable and internet, it's a bit hard to believe it when the poverty pimps are shrieking about how "the poor!!!" can't afford bread and milk.

Tokie

Tokenconservative
20th October 2007, 06:22 AM
How come none of them had requested a paternity test? That would knock out two of the "fathers", anyway.

I used to work in child support enforcement and yes, the rumor is true. If a woman has three children by three different men, she WILL get more child support than if she had three children with one man, or with an ex-husband. The trick is she has to be sure that it is the FIRST child he has to pay child support on...the first child of a father is the costliest. The rest are just a little extra.

Example: The absolute minimum amount of child support in Kansas (at the time I was working) was $283 per month for one child. For two children, it was $338. It was at weird, lesser increments for each child above that. So if a woman had three children with three DIFFERENT men, and that child were HIS first child, she would get a MINIMUM of $283 per child, per month. MUCH better--it really added up. Now, take the women who hung out at the med student parties?? They really were racking in the money by the time the kids were in pre-school.

I recall some years ago (early 90s?) seeing a "poor" woman on, I believe, the Phil Donahue show. She had, if I remember correctly, 9 kids, most by different fathers and was bemoaning her lot in life and at one point said that, "all" she was asking for (from state or fed assistance) was a house big enough so that each of her kids could have their own "betroom."

Gee.... I make a pretty decent living and can't afford a 10-bedroom mansion. I'd like the gummint to give me one, too!

Tokie

Tokenconservative
20th October 2007, 06:32 AM
I deliver Thanksgiving and Christmas meals to the needy in Kansas City, Kansas. Believe me, they are poor. A house with no working electricity or heat, broken windows patched with tape and plastic, sagging porches, holes in the external walls...

The first year my son went with me, we went up to one such house. The house was being heated with a fireplace in the living room. There was no other heat or light source to speak of. An elderly man came to the door with an obviously bad glaucoma. I was worried his porch would break from our weight, it was creaking so bad. "Praise the Lord" he said, "Be thankful for this beautiful day of thanksgiving! Be thankful that my feet hit the ground, that I have this hot food for my belly, and I have these wonderful people to bring it to me." My son, who was eight or nine at the time, reached out and shook his hand, "I am thankful for you, sir."

We got to the car, and I noticed he had completely broken down crying. "He has nothing, and he is THANKFUL!"

It took both of us a few minutes, in the warmth of our car, to just absorb that moment.

So--wanna know where the poor people are? Go outside of your comfort zone, and you will find them.

LOL!

I love these heartwarming stories.

Yes, of course we as a modern, civilized society should help the truly needy: kids, the elderly, the infirm, the ill, etc.

Now let me tell you MY story.

I used to work in a bidness that often took me into "the projects" in my city. I'd be there for hours a day, sometimes 2-3 days in a row. I'd often observe young, apparently healthy men (15-early 30s and above) doing nothing all day long but lounging about in front of their tax-payer provided housing. Moreover, the parking lots in these places were typically filled with late model automobiles that I, at the time, could not afford. When I asked a state social services official about this, she just rolled her eyes, sighed and said "they know how to game the system. You won't find one of those cars registered to anyone who has a lease in that project."

She was right. I knew because part of my job was identifying cars and their owners and it was damned near impossible in these places.

Of course, after welfare reform (which the Dems are trying desperately to unwind) this all changed. And in those days (late 80s, early 90s) our economy was not booming (yet) as it is now. But tell me: is there some REASON all these healthy young men could not get jobs? After welfare reform they were able to. Why weren't they before?

It's not possible to starve in America unless you are say, a Scientologist or some poor abused kid locked in a closet. You simply can't do it. There's too much free food and other assistance available, so much in fact, that state welfare/foodstamp agencies take out ads on TV and radio encouraging people to come in and get theirs! Telling us that you just never know whether you qualify, which is code for: our parameters have changed so that in this full-employment economy, we can keep getting our funding! And for some reason, they run these same ads on Spanish language TV and radio!

Hmmmm....

Tokie

Z
20th October 2007, 07:12 AM
If you're stupid enough to keep a second house while having to beg for food, then you deserve to go hungry.

Yeah... I have to agree with Shuize here. If you have a nice car, a second house, or a retirement fund, you have no business getting public assistance.

For that matter, if you have even a reasonable car or a first house (not a beater or renting an apartment), you really have no business getting public assistance.

That's why I love one thing that they did in OK - if you got public assistance, they had caseworkers that would periodically drop by to check on your actual living conditions, at random. Stopped a lot of the crap, as far as I can tell.

bigred
20th October 2007, 09:22 AM
Yes. Irresponsible. I do know people, not many, who keep having kids because they get more government assistance. These same people whine about not having enough money. The government doesn't give me enough. How can I work when I'm a single parent with 3 kids? Why should I work when I get paid to stay home and raise more welfare dependant people? Round and round it goes. Not always an accident.
Wow somebody else gets it.

I have various relatives and friends who were or are social workers and working with the poor and see BS like this a LOT. I disagree w/your "not many" assessment and I hate the welfare system with a passion (for the most part) because it is so poorly run, such a joke, and the mentality you describe is very common, not rare. Sure, there are people with a legitimate need who are responsible and busting their butt, yet still can't make ends meet for various "legit" reasons.....but they are easily out-numbered by the lazy mindless morons. I still can scarcely believe some of the tales they have told me - "poor" people who have more kids because they get more money (being far too stupid to get that the extra money is less than what it takes to raise another kid), being "poor" yet those kids have $100 sneakers, computers, video games, etc etc. Then they complain about how they can't feed their families. They should be in jail for gross negligance IMO.

Fnord
20th October 2007, 09:32 AM
How come none of them had requested a paternity test? That would knock out two of the "fathers", anyway.


This was the late 1980s, when the most reliable paternity test was still ye olde blood-type match. It was also Michigan, which has a bit of a reputation for automatically assuming that the mother is telling the truth when she says who the father is, and that the man is lying when he says he isn't.

This attitude is slowly changing, but is still prevalent, even in this age of DNA-based paternity testing. Now judges will say that the man does not have to pay only if his signature did not appear on the birth certificate, AND if he was never married to or cohabitating with the mother, AND if the DNA doesn't match. However, even this is not a hard-and-fast rule.

My brothers* have spread enough of their DNA around, that I can not go back to Michigan without some lawyer "suggesting" that I am somehow responsible, and that I should make some kind of financial settlement. I've even gone so far as to pay for testing, which has proven that I could not be not the father.

One way or another, a man always pays.

* - My brothers are half-brothers to me, and step-brothers to each other. This further confuses DNA testing.

bigred
20th October 2007, 11:22 AM
There are not 47 million people who have to choose between filling perscriptions and eating. A big fraction of that 47 million is people who qualify for various government programs but don't sign up, and another big fraction is young people who could afford it (they might have to cut back on ammenities) but choose not to because they're healthy and would rather pocket the money they don't expect to need to spend. I have no doubt a good number of poor exist, and life is surely hard for them, but let's not make things up, shall we?
Oh cmon why not? That's the life-blood of political correctness, after all, which is all the rage.

PS don't forget the other large portion of the 47 mil who don't have insurance but are healthy and don't have to choose between prescriptions or food.

shalomsteph
20th October 2007, 04:47 PM
I don't get the people who "choose" to be poor in the long run by their short term decisions.

Example.

My husband works as a chemist at a pet food company. One of the animal handlers (who makes probably 10-12 dollars an hour) chose NOT to get the company health insurance, because it was "too expensive." It IS a little on the high side, BUT, this guy has diabetes as well as some other chronic health conditions, AND he enjoys going to the ER in an ambulance.

His girlfriend worked part time at McDonalds when they planned their child together. (He has one, she has one) Both of the children are on Medicaid. The girlfriend, because she is not married to him and his income doesn't count, gets Medicaid for the pregnancy, and the baby is automatically covered for the first year. Baby is a micro-preemie. Yes, it's sad, but any reasonable parents would have pulled the plug at "blind, deaf, severely retarded, no chance of having a quality life". Instead, they applied, and received, SSI for the child and kept him alive. He can't eat or breathe on his own (no brain stem activity) so he just hangs out in the living room, sucking up Medicaid dollars and Federal social security money. They have a nurse who comes 4 times a day to check on him. He complained about one of the nurses because he, in his uneducated brain, thought she had the oxygen off for too long while cleaning the tubes. That agency quit, and he had no nurses until he could find another nursing service that would accept Medicaid. He tried to sue the first nursing service for quitting. Of course, no lawyer would take the case and he gave it up.

Because their baby is on life support, they no longer have to pay their electric bill. Legally, they can not be shut off. However, once the baby dies, he will owe thousands of dollars. (I mean, even with a respirator, a baby with no brain stem can't live for years and years. A serious infection will do the poor thing in)

The latest drama is that he is having his wages garnished for all of HIS medical bills and ambulance rides. They are taking more of his income than the insurance would have been to begin with, and his expenses (prescriptions, medical bills) are on-going. I guess he thought it was free to use the ambulance and ER.

Also, he has thrown out his girlfriend, who has, for now, her son and has petitioned the court for the baby. So he has lost the rather lucrative child support money she was getting for her son plus her income. She will, in all likelihood, be given custody of the baby, which ends his SSI payment and freebie electricity. It will also bring the bill current and payable. AND, he will probably have to pay child support on the baby. The child support doesn't take into account the now gigantic electric bill or the medical bill garnishment. He will be very poor, but it will be almost completely his own doing.

We, as middle class folks with insurance, would have had to make different decisions all the way through. We would have had to disconnect the baby (not due to money, but just because WE wouldn't want to live like that. Plus, we have a million dollar lifetime cap, which also would have "encouraged" it in a case like this) We never would have not had insurance, we never would have not paid the electric bill, etc...so I agree some of these ARE choices. But sometimes, people are born in the hole and never have the brains or initiative to get out of the hole, either.

bigred
21st October 2007, 03:24 PM
sometimes, people are born in the hole and never have the brains or initiative to get out of the hole, either.Oh cmon, that's impossible. It's always "society's fault."

quixotecoyote
21st October 2007, 05:06 PM
Oh cmon, that's impossible. It's always "society's fault."

I would argue a good society would have opportunities for even those with below average brains and initiative to be well-fed, adequately housed, and medically cared for. Much of the point of having a society is protection for the weaker members. If your values promote the strong surviving and the weak being culled, society isn't such a great place.

bigred
21st October 2007, 06:59 PM
I would argue a good society would have opportunities for even those with below average brains and initiative to be well-fed, adequately housed, and medically cared for. I would counter that those too lazy bother even trying to earn such things have no right to any of them. I also think your idea is very unrealistic. eg exactly what opportunities would you suggest for lazy people that would keep them "well-fed, adequately housed, and medically cared for" - ?

Much of the point of having a society is protection for the weaker members. On the contrary, that's not the point of societies at all, if they even have one.

If your values promote the strong surviving and the weak being culled, society isn't such a great place.Only if you're stupid and/or lazy.

If your society promotes supporting those who are unable and/or unwilling to earn their keep, you promote a welfare mentality which drags everyone down, and ultimately your society is doomed (as America is IMO). Of course to say you never help the "lesser" or always do are both oversimplifications....but generally speaking, the more you promote a "survival of the fittest," the stronger and more successful or thriving your society will be.

JoeEllison
21st October 2007, 07:01 PM
I would counter that those too lazy bother even trying to earn such things have no right to any of them. I also think your idea is very unrealistic. eg exactly what opportunities would you suggest for lazy people that would keep them "well-fed, adequately housed, and medically cared for" - ?

On the contrary, that's not the point of societies at all, if they even have one.

Only if you're stupid and/or lazy.

If your society promotes supporting those who are unable and/or unwilling to earn their keep, you promote a welfare mentality which drags everyone down, and ultimately your society is doomed (as America is IMO). Of course to say you never help the "lesser" or always do are both oversimplifications....but generally speaking, the more you promote a "survival of the fittest," the stronger and more successful or thriving your society will be.

That's all pretty much the opposite of reality. Really, what it does for you is to enjoy the benefits of being a member of a society, while refusing to accept the responsibilities that come with it.

quixotecoyote
21st October 2007, 07:01 PM
Survival of the Fittest and America is Doomed.

<snort> click

bigred
21st October 2007, 07:05 PM
Sorry I didn't understand either of those last 2 posts-??

JoeEllison
21st October 2007, 07:05 PM
I would argue a good society would have opportunities for even those with below average brains and initiative to be well-fed, adequately housed, and medically cared for. Much of the point of having a society is protection for the weaker members. If your values promote the strong surviving and the weak being culled, society isn't such a great place.

There's something to be said for the idea that the health of a society can be judged by how it treats its weakest members... and by that measure, America isn't doing as well as it could be. There is NO reason why a wealthy country should have children without health care, working people who can't afford housing, and other basic needs taken care of within the society. I'm not talking about "handouts for the lazy", I'm talking about taking care of kids, and making sure than an honest day's work earns a living wage.

bigred
21st October 2007, 07:19 PM
There's something to be said for the idea that the health of a society can be judged by how it treats its weakest members... and by that measure, America isn't doing as well as it could be. There is NO reason why a wealthy country should have children without health care, working people who can't afford housing, and other basic needs taken care of within the society. I'm not talking about "handouts for the lazy", I'm talking about taking care of kids, and making sure than an honest day's work earns a living wage.
To me "taken care of within the society" implies taking responsibility AWAY from the individual. Again circumstances obviously vary, yet what you say seems to imply it's societies' fault any time someone is having trouble putting food on the table etc - when I know damn well at least some of them, I daresay many of them, do things like refuse jobs they consider "beneath them" even tho they are destitute and/or have no other options at the time (eg dish washer, ditch digger, whatever), or worse avoid/refuse jobs altogether because the gov't (or assorted well-meaning charities) give them hand-outs and it's a lot easier to do nothing, esp when jobs won't change their lifestyle THAT much (or so they think) thanks to said handouts, manage their money exceedingly poorly (some examples given earlier), etc etc.

So there are indeed reasons why a wealthy country has children without health care, working people who can't afford housing, and other basic needs taken care of. To be sure our society could always use improvements, health care being one of the most obvious. But it is far, far from the only thing at fault. Often the individuals are.

quixotecoyote
21st October 2007, 08:04 PM
bigred:

This discussion has turned ugly. Civil but ugly, so for the sake of my blood pressure I'm ending my side. I do want to give you one link to chew on and if it gives you any thoughts or changes of opinions, I'll be back to chew it over with you.

Moral Culpability (http://tinyurl.com/2583qq)

LostAngeles
21st October 2007, 09:21 PM
I grew up surrounded by people who were gaming the system. My mom was raising us on $7.50/hr, paying $750/mo for a two bedroom apartment. We were on state health insurance since she couldn't afford to pay for that. She had a day care voucher for me until I was 12 and my sister until she was 12. Occasionally, when things were tight, she would get food from the food bank. Christmas came in the form of, "fuel assistance," which took care of the electric bill (a.k.a. our heat. If you've never had electric heat, simply know that it is atrociously bad and expensive). When the New England winter was over, she paid the electric bill herself. My father could not be bothered to pay child support. When I was 15, she got lucky and got a Section 8 housing voucher and we moved to a nicer little row house. With that stress gone, she finally went back to school and is now a pre-school teacher.

We didn't have cable because it cost too much money. I didn't have a computer, but she did save up for me to get a word processor when I was 13 so I could type my papers for school. My Gameboy and comic books were paid for by summer jobs and babysitting. When I turned 16, I saved up for my own TV and paid Mom for my cable.

All of these were things I saw our neighbors get just by being really, really good at scamming the system.

The actual poor are, for the most part, folks who lived what I lived - working class poor. Working their butt off, making too little to live on and too much to qualify for most of the government assistance. Then there's the middle-class who are doing slightly better, but not so much more. Those are the folks SCHIP is intended for. It was an SCHIP-like program that MA had that insured us once we crossed the line and were no longer eligible for Medicaid. Mom stayed uninsured until she became a pre-school teacher. Luckily, the skin cancer (minor) and the detached retina waited until she was insured. As minor as those are, if they had occurred earlier, it would have destroyed us.

fuelair
22nd October 2007, 08:12 AM
Some of them, no doubt. But poverty is a trap. Have you ever lived it? I have, I grew up in extreme poverty by UK standards (by which I mean we didn't have electricity or hot water for much of the time, no phone, no car, and my parents had to resort to less...er...legal activities to feed their kids when times were very tough, which was not infrequent.

However, they both smoked. Irresponsible? Yes, absolutely. More so when they had to go grubbing through the ashtrays to make a rollup out of the 'dog ends' of their old discarded cigarettes. That's not a good role model for a child and wasting money on cigarettes when you are that poor is reckless and unethical. But they were good people and had almost no other pleasures in life, and of course were addicted so not entirely in control.

It's not so straightforward, really. Go there yourself and see.Not to pry (honestly) but were your grandparents also in poverty (this sounds like a generational poverty thing)?

fuelair
22nd October 2007, 08:19 AM
To me "taken care of within the society" implies taking responsibility AWAY from the individual. Again circumstances obviously vary, yet what you say seems to imply it's societies' fault any time someone is having trouble putting food on the table etc - when I know damn well at least some of them, I daresay many of them, do things like refuse jobs they consider "beneath them" even tho they are destitute and/or have no other options at the time (eg dish washer, ditch digger, whatever), or worse avoid/refuse jobs altogether because the gov't (or assorted well-meaning charities) give them hand-outs and it's a lot easier to do nothing, esp when jobs won't change their lifestyle THAT much (or so they think) thanks to said handouts, manage their money exceedingly poorly (some examples given earlier), etc etc.

So there are indeed reasons why a wealthy country has children without health care, working people who can't afford housing, and other basic needs taken care of. To be sure our society could always use improvements, health care being one of the most obvious. But it is far, far from the only thing at fault. Often the individuals are.
Sometimes the individuals are. That does not stop the fact that lot's aren't from being true - or the fact that a government is supposed to take care of all it's citizens at some level - and I suspect leaving them to die of starvation, malnutrition, lack of shelter, lack of health care is on the wrong side of that supposition.

Raskolnikov123
22nd October 2007, 08:37 AM
I see a few misperceptions in this thread.

1) Poverty is not defined by being in debt, or living paycheck to paycheck. There are different definitions, but in the US the standard measure used by the government is whether you make enough to pay for a basket of goods and services that are deemed essential (food, housing, health care, electricity, running water, basic household expenses, transportation to work, etc.). The big flaw in this standard definition is in calculating how much you "make". The standard definition excludes most government assistance for instance, even if that assistance is sufficient to allow you to pay for essential goods and services. But the government also tracks poverty by different definitions that account for such revenue sources. You can read more here: http://www.census.gov/hhes/www/poverty/poverty.html

2) Such measures, and calculations of aid necessary, are not going to be perfect. A big loophole in a lot of poverty calculations is that the impoverished "single mom" has a working live-in boyfriend who helps with the finances. Others manage to skimp on part of the budget to afford modest luxuries they couldn't otherwise afford (like cable TV). Others simply go into debt to afford those things, further trapping themselves in poverty. As such, welfare assistance tends to be micromanaged. You get food stamps, medicaid, and housing/housing vouchers instead of cash. There are some actual cash payments for discretionary income (almost entirely limited to people with dependent children), but they are usually pretty small, and subject to cut off if the parent doesn't seek work.

3) Observed abuses, and unwise spending, by welfare recipients unsurprisingly sours people on the programs, seeing them as enabling. For a large share of recipients, they are. But for others, the aid enables them to recover from or survive a bad but forgiveable life decision, or just bad luck. Additionally, in order to receive the vast majority of aid out there, you have to have kids. Welfare is about the kids, not the parents. A childless parent screws up, they are left on their own to figure it out. But when they have kids, the cost of a parents's screwups or bad luck can have horrible consequences. For many of them, they already have the deck stacked against them due to their "poor choice in parents". I don't see huge issues with avoiding further stacking due to malnutrition, lack of access to health care, or being forced to live in a horrible neighborhood.

4) The health care problem is indeed more complex than 47 million Americans who have to choose between food and health. Medicaid covers families of the very poor. Most middle and upper class families either have insurance, or can afford to pay out of pocket. The gap is for the working poor, childless poor, and middle class families whose employers don't provide insurance. For them, health care is incredibly expensive, far more than it is for the insured. There are serious market structure problems that make it much harder to solve the access problem than simply having them buy over-the-counter insurance. And a huge problem is that rising health care costs are making it hard for employers to keep providing health care coverage. More and more of them are dropping it as unaffordable, so the ranks of the unwillingly uninsured are rising every year.

Tokenconservative
22nd October 2007, 10:35 AM
tkingdoll,

I understand what you're saying.

In my town I tend to put lower income individuals in two groups, and by no means do I think there aren't exceptions, I just haven't seen any yet.

The first group lives in a very humble trailer or tin-roof home, but there is always a satellite dish pointing towards the sky and a fairly nice vehicle in the driveway. Perhaps someone is providing these items for the individuals living there? If not, clearly there is some disposable income. (When I say fairly nice car, I mean the car in the driveway is worth more than some of the cars people I work with own, and I'm not hurting for money. If need be, the individual who owns the car could make do with less of a car if money was a problem.

The second group would simply be the homeless individuals. There is no indication that these people have any disposable income, and I'd say they would better fit the description of 'poor' from a monetary definition.

Regardless of reason, I can imagine that being raised at poverty level would make it hard to see reason or find a solution to escape such poverty. Education is probably one of the most important tools at societies disposal.

If you want to see the poverty lie in action, visit a school parking lot.

How many times have you heard teachers bemoan how little they earn? I sub teach and while no longer surprised at this, still often note that the lots are typically filled with late model Hondas, Toyotas, Lexus, Range Rovers, expensive SUVs and other higher-end cars...an ele. near me always has a white TT and a silver Crossfire in the teachers lot. The principal at an ele. my kids attended for 1/2 year drove a new Continental (save the earth!) and his wife (a school counselor at a nearby high school) drove a Range Rover).

I sure don't buy the "teacher in poverty" line.

What many liberals fail (refuse) to recognize is that in America and to a certain extent much of Europe, Aus/NZ and some other developed places in the world, "poverty" is not necessarily a life sentence and indeed, it is more commonly a very transitory state, usually among the young and unskilled while they work their way into a higher income bracket.

Yes, there are those who, usually due to poor life choices/decisons remain poor their entire lives. How can this be solved?

It can't. So while we need to help their children and make sure they themselves do not die in the streets in their old age, mollycoddling people who would rather smoke crack than make a living has been proven time and time again to be a waste of time and huge waste of public resources (though it does manage to keep a lot of state and federal employees pulling down a wage that keeps THEM out of poverty).

Tokie

KoihimeNakamura
22nd October 2007, 10:48 AM
If you want to see the poverty lie in action, visit a school parking lot.

How many times have you heard teachers bemoan how little they earn? I sub teach and while no longer surprised at this, still often note that the lots are typically filled with late model Hondas, Toyotas, Lexus, Range Rovers, expensive SUVs and other higher-end cars...an ele. near me always has a white TT and a silver Crossfire in the teachers lot. The principal at an ele. my kids attended for 1/2 year drove a new Continental (save the earth!) and his wife (a school counselor at a nearby high school) drove a Range Rover).

Adminstrators tend to earn more money than teachers. However, the average salary for a teacher is ~44000 as of 2005. (~50000 in Oragan as of 2006)

I sure don't buy the "teacher in poverty" line.

What many liberals fail (refuse) to recognize is that in America and to a certain extent much of Europe, Aus/NZ and some other developed places in the world, "poverty" is not necessarily a life sentence and indeed, it is more commonly a very transitory state, usually among the young and unskilled while they work their way into a higher income bracket.Right. Come to Spokane, to the I-90 and go watch the transiant camps. In winter. Note their age*

Yes, there are those who, usually due to poor life choices/decisons remain poor their entire lives. How can this be solved?

It can't. So while we need to help their children and make sure they themselves do not die in the streets in their old age, mollycoddling people who would rather smoke crack than make a living has been proven time and time again to be a waste of time and huge waste of public resources (though it does manage to keep a lot of state and federal employees pulling down a wage that keeps THEM out of poverty)..... This is one cause among many

Raskolnikov123
22nd October 2007, 10:52 AM
If you want to see the poverty lie in action, visit a school parking lot.

How many times have you heard teachers bemoan how little they earn? I sub teach and while no longer surprised at this, still often note that the lots are typically filled with late model Hondas, Toyotas, Lexus, Range Rovers, expensive SUVs and other higher-end cars...an ele. near me always has a white TT and a silver Crossfire in the teachers lot. The principal at an ele. my kids attended for 1/2 year drove a new Continental (save the earth!) and his wife (a school counselor at a nearby high school) drove a Range Rover).


The teacher issue is complicated. *starting* teacher salaries aren't great for a profession that requires a college degree. A good 10-20k below what others with bachelor's degrees are earning, even in generic professions like "sales". This is bad, and cuts down on the talent drawn into the profession.

But once you have 10-15 years in, salaries are quite comfortable, which can easily explain the nice cars in the parking lot. So can having a well-off spouse.

Now, I am a child of teachers and married a former teacher. But what annoys the bejesus out of me is that when money comes available for increased salaries, it almost invariably goes to the top of the teaching pay scale. This is because the unions and negotiations committees are dominated by older teachers, and salary at the top of the scale determines things like social security payments after retirement.

So the trick when discussing teacher salaries is to be sympthetic to the problem at the lower salary runs, but skeptical that any increased budget for teachers salaries will go to the rungs of the ladder where it is needed.

bigred
22nd October 2007, 01:37 PM
Sometimes the individuals are. That does not stop the fact that lot's aren't from being true - or the fact that a government is supposed to take care of all it's citizens at some level - and I suspect leaving them to die of starvation, malnutrition, lack of shelter, lack of health care is on the wrong side of that supposition.
Of course. I would think/hope that that is a given, but that's why I threw some caveats in there to that effect anyway, because if you don't, sure enough someone (not saying you) will come along w/some goofball black n' white accusation (ie "so you're saying it isn't black...oh so then you think it must be white!!" etc and ad nauseum).

Also I find it interesting how most people abhor how gov't "interferes" with their lives and wants as little meddling as possible......until they have something to gain from it. Then they complain that the gov't isn't "meddling" enough. :rolleyes: (Hurrican Katrina comes to mind) Gotta love the double-standard.

Blue Mountain
23rd October 2007, 11:17 AM
Again and again throughout this thread I see references to medical problems destroying a person's financial position, due largely to hospital bills. And the conservatives still don't want that nasty, horrible thing they call "socialized medicine."

In Canada we have a single-payer health-care system. Provided you meet certain citizenship and residency requirements, you're covered. The provincial government foots the bill when you end up in hospital. None of this crap of having your retirement savings wiped out if you come down with an illness that requires a hospital stay. We spend less per capita on our health-care system and have better outcomes than the States.

I have type I (insulin dependent) diabetes. My drug costs (insulin) are covered by the provincial drug plan, with an up-front deductible of 3% of my gross annual income. (It doesn't cover the low dose ASA my doctor recommends for warding off potential heart problems.) So if my income takes a sudden nosedive, my co-pay does down as well.

I'll note the system's not perfect. A long term illness that makes it difficult to hold down a job (MS and schizophrenia are two that come to mind) can doom a person to a lifetime of social assistance. If you come down with these early enough in life, it may also make getting married more difficult, so you can end up as a single person on social assistance. Also, some medicines aren't covered by the drug plans, so many people end up having to take less effective drugs to treat certain conditions because they're the ones that are covered.

quixotecoyote
24th October 2007, 03:00 AM
Again and again throughout this thread I see references to medical problems destroying a person's financial position, due largely to hospital bills. And the conservatives still don't want that nasty, horrible thing they call "socialized medicine."

In Canada we have a single-payer health-care system. Provided you meet certain citizenship and residency requirements, you're covered. The provincial government foots the bill when you end up in hospital. None of this crap of having your retirement savings wiped out if you come down with an illness that requires a hospital stay. We spend less per capita on our health-care system and have better outcomes than the States.

I have type I (insulin dependent) diabetes. My drug costs (insulin) are covered by the provincial drug plan, with an up-front deductible of 3% of my gross annual income. (It doesn't cover the low dose ASA my doctor recommends for warding off potential heart problems.) So if my income takes a sudden nosedive, my co-pay does down as well.

I'll note the system's not perfect. A long term illness that makes it difficult to hold down a job (MS and schizophrenia are two that come to mind) can doom a person to a lifetime of social assistance. If you come down with these early enough in life, it may also make getting married more difficult, so you can end up as a single person on social assistance. Also, some medicines aren't covered by the drug plans, so many people end up having to take less effective drugs to treat certain conditions because they're the ones that are covered.

Check me if I'm wrong, but if you've got money, you can still get better treatment right? I know that's how it works in the UK.

Dancing David
24th October 2007, 04:46 AM
Yes, silly me.

But, then again, in my "worldview" not buying adequate health insurance is a poor financial decision. You say he put away a lot of money in his life yet apparently did not do this.





See, I think there's more to this. He's dirt poor and yet somehow does not qualify for government subsidized health care? That doesn't make any sense. If he's as poor as you say, he's exactly the kind of person such programs are design to help. If he will not take advantage of such a program out of pride, or at least try to figure out where the bureaucratic mix up is, then that's his choice. But I'd say it is another poor one.

False assumption.

If you are
-ablebodied
-have no children
-have children but have received aid past the limit
-are below the age of 65
-are retired but have assets greater in value than x (many states $3000)

then you will not qualify for most medical programs, if you do qualify for subsidized medical insurance, it is because you have children (the SCHIP program)

Dancing David
24th October 2007, 04:50 AM
There are resource limits for government assistance. Owning a nice car or a second house, or even a retirement account can put you over the resource limit for Medicaid.


Hiya!

In most states having any assets over the limit (commonly $3000) will disqualify you. But you also must be disabled, retired or have children first.

The second house doesn't matter, having any asset greater than the limit matters.

Dancing David
24th October 2007, 04:56 AM
According to the left in America when they are trying to force socialized medicine on us, you are "poor" in America if you make $80,000 or less a year, but when it comes time to pay your income taxes and you make $80,000 or more, you are "rich."

Funny stuff!

That was one states take on the matter. Part of 'states rights', and it was for a family of some size (I believe four) that was living in NYC.

That is not a national standard, but please don't let that keep you from just making crap up.


We live in a country where the unemployment rate has hovered at what Keynesian economic models long said was an impossiblity (5% and below) and in which we are told that if we close our borders to the illegals flowing across in their tens of millions, the entire economy will collapse.

Still, the poverty pimps hafta make a living, too! You can't expect those who make their living by convincing guilty liberals (and the occasional stupid conservative) that tens of millions of American kids go to be "hungry" every night because their parents are so "poor" they can't afford to feed them, and that our streets are filled with destitute "homeless" families cruelly cast out of their "paycheck-to-paycheck" jobs by our collapsing economy--collapsing because, apparently, there are too MANY jobs.

What poverty pimps are you talking about, the ones that live with the Underwear Gnomes?

try raising kids if you work at McDonalds.


All I gotta say is: it's gotta be tough to be a liberal. I mean, how on earth do you wrap your mind around such pretzelized logic?

Tokie


It has got to be tough to ignore facts and reality and just suck up the crap on FOX News?

Where are the poverty pimps. who makes money being poor?

Dancing David
24th October 2007, 05:00 AM
I have two houses and I go hungry all the time.

'Specially right before Thanksgiving when I like to empty out the ol' gut in anticipation of the $200-$300 in food I am going to be filling said gut with over the next 4 days of pretty much nothing but eating, napping and staring at the widescreen.

Nobody--NObody--goes hungry in America because they simply cannot get food. In fact, among the "poor" (an ever-changing classification here) obesity caused by overeating and too little exercise, not genetic predisposition or heavymetals in "poor" neighborhoods or some such, is a major health concern for those who get "free" or assisted healthcare.

There has not been an case of actual starvation in America since the 1930s, and there were only a few then, before we did something about it.

More crap! Dop you know why the food programs were established? Because in 1942 there were something like 25% of the population who were considered to be 4-F because of malnutrition. But please don't let the facts stand in your way.

Any chile going to bed hungry today, is actually going to bed malnourished, and is doing so because of poor dietary choices by his or her parents.

In a country where "the poor" have, on average, 2 TVs and DVD/video players, a late model car, cable and internet, it's a bit hard to believe it when the poverty pimps are shrieking about how "the poor!!!" can't afford bread and milk.

And where did that statistic come from, put up your data. Lets us see how they found that data.?

Can you? Will you? Where is the data?

Did they take some average of the 'poverty' line and then apply it to the 'average family' at that income level?

Please do tell us where your statistics come from.


Tokie

Tokenconservative
24th October 2007, 05:03 AM
I don't get the people who "choose" to be poor in the long run by their short term decisions.

Example.

My husband works as a chemist at a pet food company. One of the animal handlers (who makes probably 10-12 dollars an hour) chose NOT to get the company health insurance, because it was "too expensive." It IS a little on the high side, BUT, this guy has diabetes as well as some other chronic health conditions, AND he enjoys going to the ER in an ambulance.

His girlfriend worked part time at McDonalds when they planned their child together. (He has one, she has one) Both of the children are on Medicaid. The girlfriend, because she is not married to him and his income doesn't count, gets Medicaid for the pregnancy, and the baby is automatically covered for the first year. Baby is a micro-preemie. Yes, it's sad, but any reasonable parents would have pulled the plug at "blind, deaf, severely retarded, no chance of having a quality life". Instead, they applied, and received, SSI for the child and kept him alive. He can't eat or breathe on his own (no brain stem activity) so he just hangs out in the living room, sucking up Medicaid dollars and Federal social security money. They have a nurse who comes 4 times a day to check on him. He complained about one of the nurses because he, in his uneducated brain, thought she had the oxygen off for too long while cleaning the tubes. That agency quit, and he had no nurses until he could find another nursing service that would accept Medicaid. He tried to sue the first nursing service for quitting. Of course, no lawyer would take the case and he gave it up.

Because their baby is on life support, they no longer have to pay their electric bill. Legally, they can not be shut off. However, once the baby dies, he will owe thousands of dollars. (I mean, even with a respirator, a baby with no brain stem can't live for years and years. A serious infection will do the poor thing in)

The latest drama is that he is having his wages garnished for all of HIS medical bills and ambulance rides. They are taking more of his income than the insurance would have been to begin with, and his expenses (prescriptions, medical bills) are on-going. I guess he thought it was free to use the ambulance and ER.

Also, he has thrown out his girlfriend, who has, for now, her son and has petitioned the court for the baby. So he has lost the rather lucrative child support money she was getting for her son plus her income. She will, in all likelihood, be given custody of the baby, which ends his SSI payment and freebie electricity. It will also bring the bill current and payable. AND, he will probably have to pay child support on the baby. The child support doesn't take into account the now gigantic electric bill or the medical bill garnishment. He will be very poor, but it will be almost completely his own doing.

We, as middle class folks with insurance, would have had to make different decisions all the way through. We would have had to disconnect the baby (not due to money, but just because WE wouldn't want to live like that. Plus, we have a million dollar lifetime cap, which also would have "encouraged" it in a case like this) We never would have not had insurance, we never would have not paid the electric bill, etc...so I agree some of these ARE choices. But sometimes, people are born in the hole and never have the brains or initiative to get out of the hole, either.

Too bad he's not an illegal alien. Then he'd get all his medical paid for, and since he'd bee here living under a dozen or more identities, he could just tell the hospital and all the other dunning him to stuff it.

Happens every day with illegals. LEGAL citizens are forced to pay and on top of that, pay for the illegals, many of whom have kids just like this one, or other very expensive medical situations...plus, when a landlord tries to evict them, the illegal need only contact some advocacy group and they will send a lawyer to stop the eviction and force the elec and water and gas companies to provide these free because he is, after all a "minority.

And they will, because the last thing any of them want, is Jesse and Al camped with megaphones and cameras on their front stoop.

Tokie

Dancing David
24th October 2007, 05:08 AM
Wow somebody else gets it.

I have various relatives and friends who were or are social workers and working with the poor and see BS like this a LOT. I disagree w/your "not many" assessment and I hate the welfare system with a passion (for the most part) because it is so poorly run, such a joke, and the mentality you describe is very common, not rare. \

Where and when?

Not since 'welfare reform'.

Put up the facts, what state, what city, what kind of family?

Under the current system there is a five year limit to TANF in most states. there is no cash bonus for more children. So where is this happening? Really, where?

Please do tell. the only people who get more money for having kids are foster parents.

Sure, there are people with a legitimate need who are responsible and busting their butt, yet still can't make ends meet for various "legit" reasons.....but they are easily out-numbered by the lazy mindless morons. I still can scarcely believe some of the tales they have told me - "poor" people who have more kids because they get more money (being far too stupid to get that the extra money is less than what it takes to raise another kid),

Where and when, not since welfare reform.

being "poor" yet those kids have $100 sneakers, computers, video games, etc etc. Then they complain about how they can't feed their families. They should be in jail for gross negligance IMO.

Tokenconservative
24th October 2007, 05:12 AM
Adminstrators tend to earn more money than teachers. However, the average salary for a teacher is ~44000 as of 2005. (~50000 in Oragan as of 2006)

Right. Come to Spokane, to the I-90 and go watch the transiant camps. In winter. Note their age*

.... This is one cause among many

Does that avg. factor in the 8-9 month work year, and a rich bennies and retirement package that would make a 1970s auto worker blush?

Yeah...din't think so. See, when that $44k is TAKE home, it turns it into more like about $60k. And even high schools do not have that many administrators. Here, a top teacher (guaged by years, not skills) earns (avg.) $50+k/yr. and on top of that gets the bennies package including insurance, covering the teacher's entire family that would cost me something around $20k/yr. On top of that, is the retirement package, another $35-40k a year in value, not coming out of the teacher's pocket. You do the math.

If your transient camps are anything like ours, they are filled to capacity with illegals. Yes, many of them are middle aged to slightly older (you don't live much past 50 or so in Mexico).

The American "transients" you are seeing are not
"workers" but rather "drunks and druggies." This is a whole 'nother problem.

Every "one case" is among many. If it is typical, it becomes the baseline.

Tokie

Tokenconservative
24th October 2007, 05:23 AM
The teacher issue is complicated. *starting* teacher salaries aren't great for a profession that requires a college degree. A good 10-20k below what others with bachelor's degrees are earning, even in generic professions like "sales". This is bad, and cuts down on the talent drawn into the profession.

But once you have 10-15 years in, salaries are quite comfortable, which can easily explain the nice cars in the parking lot. So can having a well-off spouse.

Now, I am a child of teachers and married a former teacher. But what annoys the bejesus out of me is that when money comes available for increased salaries, it almost invariably goes to the top of the teaching pay scale. This is because the unions and negotiations committees are dominated by older teachers, and salary at the top of the scale determines things like social security payments after retirement.

So the trick when discussing teacher salaries is to be sympthetic to the problem at the lower salary runs, but skeptical that any increased budget for teachers salaries will go to the rungs of the ladder where it is needed.

Lots of starting positions for jobs requiring a college degree are not "great." Most jobs today, in America, that are not manual labor, require some sort of college. Yes, there are those $80k/start jobs that headhunt 2nd year college students; math and science teaching positions (high school) get you top pay in most US school districts. Is it "the same" as an equivalent (4 yr--let's please not count the teacher "education" part as an masters)...sometimes. And typically, the starting bennies push the take home up 20%.

Boo, hoo.

It's not "too bad." It's what the market has decided a teacher is worth, largely because so many Americans don't like the product "teachers" produce.

Typically as well, as in other professions, teachers marry other teachers (shocker!), and married couples typically pool their monetary resources (shocker!). Here's the real issue with the car thing tho (house, boats, second houses, etc., too): lenders know that teachers cannot lose their jobs...the economy tanks? The teacher's pay...goes up! So lenders are VERY happy to lend to teachers. That's ANOTHER bennie that teachers do not factor in when whining about their "low pay." Because what I do is intimately tied to the health of both nat'l and local economies, when I go to borrow money they climb up my butt with the Hubble. All a lender needs to know about a teacher's creditworthiness is have they been on the job 3 yrs or more.

No, it's not because "older" teachers are running the pay issue. It's because teachers are members of a union...and unions pay top pay to their senior members. The way to get out of that system is to teach privately...and earn 1/3 of what a public school teacher does, while turning out a product that is 300% better.

Tokie

Tokenconservative
24th October 2007, 05:31 AM
More crap! Dop you know why the food programs were established? Because in 1942 there were something like 25% of the population who were considered to be 4-F because of malnutrition. But please don't let the facts stand in your way.

And where did that statistic come from, put up your data. Lets us see how they found that data.?

Can you? Will you? Where is the data?

Did they take some average of the 'poverty' line and then apply it to the 'average family' at that income level?

Please do tell us where your statistics come from.

WIC and other food programs ( just called "relief") were begun in the 1930s, not 1942, at a time of approaching near full-employment in the country.

Either way...1942 or 1936 were both a looooonnggggg time ago. Let's just say things have ...changed a bit in America since then, shall we? Can we agree on that at least?

the SCHIP program the left was trying to shove down our throats would've identified a family of 4 making $80k/ year as "poor" enough to be on the program (this is the same shell game the public schools employ with the "free breakfast/lunch" program, virtually forcing it on some families to get their numbers up; the cost here of a "free" lunch is something around a buck and a half, the $$ the school gets for each of these--fed, state, district--is about twice that). Meanwhile, these same lefties in Congress will tell you that a family of 4 bringing in $80k /year is "rich" enough to be taxed more heavily.

I can't help that you don't like the fact that the sun rises in the east every morning. I can't do a thing about it.

Tokie

Raskolnikov123
24th October 2007, 08:50 AM
Lots of starting positions for jobs requiring a college degree are not "great." Most jobs today, in America, that are not manual labor, require some sort of college. Yes, there are those $80k/start jobs that headhunt 2nd year college students; math and science teaching positions (high school) get you top pay in most US school districts. Is it "the same" as an equivalent (4 yr--let's please not count the teacher "education" part as an masters)...sometimes. And typically, the starting bennies push the take home up 20%.

For major job classifications for positions requiring a college degree, teachers are one of the worst paid for starting salaries. Fact. I see this as a significant problem as starting salaries are substantial factor in causing people to choose professions, and teaching is an important profession. The job protection and many of the benefits you refer to don't apply to starting teachers, by the way.


Boo, hoo.

It's not "too bad." It's what the market has decided a teacher is worth, largely because so many Americans don't like the product "teachers" produce.


Market? You think teacher's salaries are set by the market?

Teaching salaries are an incredible distortion from market value. Thats my point. There are constant shortages for younger teachers. Good ones jump around a lot, and frequently get hired by the school district of their choice, because schools are desperate to get good young teachers. Some schools simply cant retain the ones they want to keep. Older ones, in contrast, can't get rehired by another district to save their life, as the salaries required by the contracts are way above what districts are actually willing to pay for a new hire.

If the market set teachers' salaries, starting pay would be a lot higher and the salary structure would be a hell of a lot flatter.

I also have a major gripe with the implicit criticism of America's k-12 system in your post. This is a conservative shiboleth, but it is largely bait and switch. The schools that suck in America are in the inner cities or the South, not coincidentally the poorest parts of the country. But recognizing this points to addressing poverty, which conservatives don't want to do, so they prefer to blame the schools.

Take a look at the test data by which America's schools are criticized, and then do the simple step of breaking the data down in away that controls for social and racial problems in the US. The performance issues almost entirely vanish.

billydkid
24th October 2007, 09:27 AM
Some of these posts, frankly, are sickening. My dad left when I was 5 or 6 leaving my sisters, my mom and myself to fend for ourselves. My mom struggled mightily to take care of us. I wore rumage sale clothes which my mom modified so they would fit me - more or less. I got made fun of a lot in school because of my clothes. When my mom died I went through her things and found here tax statement from 1969. She made $3200.00 that year. We never got any kind of government assistance. Unless you have been there you have no business judging.

And it amazes me - people talk about welfare moms and people "gaming" the system - which in some cases is certainly true. People are appalled and offended by this. But our government like all governments serves, ultimately, the interests of the powerful. The people at the top serve the interests of the people at the top. Many well positioned people have used their close ties to government to become even more wealthy. We have no bid contracts. We have people in the military/industrial complex "gaming the system" to the tune of hundreds of billions of dollars. We have government officials retiring from government "service" only to join lobbying firms at huge salaries in order to use their influence to direct policy in favor of their corporate friends. We have the likes of Halliburton and Blackwater in Iraq making hundreds of billions of dollars by virtue of their ties to government. So you'll have to forgive me if I don't get all bent out of shape because a welfare mother claims more children than she has to get an extra hundred bucks a month and so on. It is the oldest trick in the book to pit the powerless against each other so that those who are really exploiting the country can do so with impunity.

bigred
24th October 2007, 09:42 AM
try raising kids if you work at McDonalds.Try not HAVING kids in the first place if you work at McDonalds.

This is the kind of irresponsible BS I'm talking about. Can't afford to raise kids? DON'T HAVE THEM. It is possible to make this choice and live within one's means. Yet many do not, then bemoan the system for all their problems.

Blue Mountain
24th October 2007, 09:47 AM
Check me if I'm wrong, but if you've got money, you can still get better treatment right? I know that's how it works in the UK.
Well, some background first. In Canada the model for most medicine is single-payer insurance (the provincial government) coupled with public-run hospitals (again, the provincial government). Many Canadians believe this is the best way of doing things. Many of these believe that introducing privately provided services (e.g., for-profit clinics and hospitals) threatens the single-payer insurance model as well, and so put up a vociferous fight against any sort of privatization of services.

On this they may have some valid points: the for-profits have a tendency to skim the easy cases and leave the tough ones to the public system, while at the same time attracting the better doctors away from the public system with better compensation packages.

That said, however, it's often noted that Europe has mixed models of both insurance and service provision. I feel Canada should examine these to see if we can use them to improve our system, especially with regards to reducing wait times for "elective" surgery. Hip and knee replacements are often cited as an example of where our model fails: people can wait two years for a hip replacement, and they are often two very pain-filled years.

Now to answer your question. Here in Canada there are some private clinics offering minor surgeries. In addition, many Canadians travel to the States or even places like India or Asia for medical treatment. It's fairly common for Canadians to go to the States for MRI scans, cancer treatment, and elective or cosmetic surgery.

Also in Canada it's possible to get additional private insurance to cover things not available in the public system, among them dental services, eye exams, and eyeglasses.

kedo1981
24th October 2007, 09:52 AM
You all will love this!!!!!!!

There isn’t a single child in this country who doesn’t have health care!


If you're a kid and you have a medical emergency no hospital can turn you away.
I doubt they can turn anybody away legally, in an emergency.

The issue (poverty) needs to be ripped out of the hands of those who would use for political gain and be dealt with realistically.
My entire intent in starting this tread was that point, being poor has become a political definition not a tangible state of being, you’re poor if you live paycheck to paycheck, you’re poor if you don’t have health insurance. Well that’s all BS and you bunch of “ hole in the doors” have fell for it.

Ok “D” head; you are all saying; what’s the solution, well there isn’t one, you can’t cure poverty. And I don’t think that society should treat the “self afflicting poor (drug addicts, drunks, people who give all their money Sylvia Brown) the same way as a working poor family.
Do you know what a mom on Medicaid does when her kid has a cold (what do you do, push fluids, bed rest, children’s aspirin) they take them to the ER, at cost of many hundreds of dollars. I know this from experience.

Blue Mountain
24th October 2007, 09:56 AM
Try not HAVING kids in the first place if you work at McDonalds.

This is the kind of irresponsible BS I'm talking about. Can't afford to raise kids? DON'T HAVE THEM. It is possible to make this choice and live within one's means. Yet many do not, then bemoan the system for all their problems.
And it's this sort of irresponsible BS from the right-wingers that we liberals get upset about. Surprise! Many people have kids within a properly sanctified marriage. Then something happens to that marriage: the husband becomes abusive so the wife walks out, or one spouse starts seeing another person, and the other spouse walks out when the affair is discovered, or a spouse suddenly becomes unable to work due to illness or death.

The remaining spouse, the one left with the kids, suddenly discovers his/her life taking a very different course from the one he/she thought it was going to, or had planned on. If the plan was "I'll raise my kids while my spouse makes the money," the person may not have good marketable skills. So it's flipping burgers at McDonald's or being a greeter at Wal-Mart.

Do not assume a single person with children came by them irresponsibly, or intended to raise them alone.

Solus
24th October 2007, 10:08 AM
What did illegal aliens ever do you to tokenconservative? Where does anger come from? I feel sorry for other human beings being taken advantage of. For example an illegal that was a housekeeper worked down my street. She was paid less then minimum wage by a family that could afford far more then that. Those people were taking advantage of her is that fair?

Dancing David
24th October 2007, 10:15 AM
WIC and other food programs ( just called "relief") were begun in the 1930s, not 1942, at a time of approaching near full-employment in the country.

Either way...1942 or 1936 were both a looooonnggggg time ago. Let's just say things have ...changed a bit in America since then, shall we? Can we agree on that at least?

the SCHIP program the left was trying to shove down our throats would've identified a family of 4 making $80k/ year as "poor" enough to be on the program (this is the same shell game the public schools employ with the "free breakfast/lunch" program, virtually forcing it on some families to get their numbers up; the cost here of a "free" lunch is something around a buck and a half, the $$ the school gets for each of these--fed, state, district--is about twice that). Meanwhile, these same lefties in Congress will tell you that a family of 4 bringing in $80k /year is "rich" enough to be taxed more heavily.

I can't help that you don't like the fact that the sun rises in the east every morning. I can't do a thing about it.

Tokie

Funny, you still don't know what you are talking about, I will give you the benefit of a doubt.

Where does the $80,000 come from.

Hint: It is the state guidelines for the program for a resident in New York state.

Is that the national guideline? Or is it a state's rights issue?

It is not a national guideline.

I believe it may even be limited to the locale of NYC.

So how is that a standard being imposed by the Congress of the USA?

Will you actually research your facts? Where does the $80,000 come from?

The sun may rise in the east, what does your alleged fact have to do with that?

Learn to research before you speak?

http://thehill.com/leading-the-news/bush-renews-threat-to-veto-childrens-health-legislation-2007-09-21.html

ETA: This article says it was for the whole state not just NYC

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/09/08/nyregion/08insure.html

And considering that the waiver was not granted, the $80,000 was a proposed waiver that did not get approved.

Dancing David
24th October 2007, 10:19 AM
Try not HAVING kids in the first place if you work at McDonalds.

This is the kind of irresponsible BS I'm talking about. Can't afford to raise kids? DON'T HAVE THEM. It is possible to make this choice and live within one's means. Yet many do not, then bemoan the system for all their problems.

You know what, I might agree with you if you weren't so rapid and foaming. Take your fuming and point it at the right person. I agree with personal accountability (especially for mortage lenders right now).

What about women who are forced into unprotected sex by their husband? Is it their fault their husband uses sex as a form of intidimidation and control? (This is just a small sector I know, but what about them.)

When birth control is taught to all children, then perhaps this strategy would work.

bigred
24th October 2007, 10:53 AM
My entire intent in starting this tread was that point, being poor has become a political definition not a tangible state of being, ....which several ranting people here have proven with their drive to degrade this into yet another liberal-vs-conservative ping-pong match. :rolleyes: Too bad. Oh well it was a good topic idea regardless, and there was some good discussion here despite that, thx

slingblade
24th October 2007, 10:55 AM
Try not HAVING kids in the first place if you work at McDonalds.

This is the kind of irresponsible BS I'm talking about. Can't afford to raise kids? DON'T HAVE THEM. It is possible to make this choice and live within one's means. Yet many do not, then bemoan the system for all their problems.

Hi, I'm Fertile Myrtle. I had children while on birth control and married. I used your tax money to have myself sterilized after two, and you are more than welcome.

I was on welfare and medicaid during my last pregnancy, because my husband was a functioning and abusive alcoholic and I was trying like hell to leave him. But my religious beliefs drove me back to him time and again, because I felt God would punish me (more) if I dissolved my marriage for any reason other than adultery, and I couldn't (yet) prove my husband was cheating on me.

However, I did eventually leave him, and leave religion, and have not used welfare since.

You are welcome.

Raskolnikov123
24th October 2007, 10:55 AM
This is the kind of irresponsible BS I'm talking about. Can't afford to raise kids? DON'T HAVE THEM. It is possible to make this choice and live within one's means. Yet many do not, then bemoan the system for all their problems.


there's no pleasing some people. Can't afford kids, don't have them. Get pregnant? Don't abort. Birth control? That goes against God's will and heaven forbid we make cheap and reliable birth control easily available, or provide acceptable options if it fails. If you aren't well-off, I guess you just aren't supposed to have sex. Or if you do get pregnant, the only acceptable option is the heart wrenching choice to give your child to a rich family for adoption, which they are prohibited by law for paying you for.

Dancing David
24th October 2007, 11:02 AM
The federal poverty line is a weird one as most states and programs want you to be at 150% to 250% of the 'poverty line'.

So we have poverty by one definition and then the term is applied based upon a multiplier of the term, so it is a total political football.

The problem i have with many state guidelines is that they use arbitrary figures for things like rent, they give you a 'rent' of $150 even though the median rent may be $750. This is especially true of the Medicaid program.

bigred
24th October 2007, 11:02 AM
that's why I threw some caveats in there to that effect anyway, because if you don't, sure enough someone (not saying you) will come along w/some goofball black n' white accusation (ie "so you're saying it isn't black...oh so then you think it must be white!!" etc and ad nauseum).

ie Exhibit A:

And it's this sort of irresponsible BS from the right-wingers that we liberals get upset about. Surprise! Many people have kids within a properly sanctified marriage. Then something happens to that marriage: the husband becomes abusive so the wife walks out, or one spouse starts seeing another person, and the other spouse walks out when the affair is discovered, or a spouse suddenly becomes unable to work due to illness or death.

The remaining spouse, the one left with the kids, suddenly discovers his/her life taking a very different course from the one he/she thought it was going to, or had planned on. If the plan was "I'll raise my kids while my spouse makes the money," the person may not have good marketable skills. So it's flipping burgers at McDonald's or being a greeter at Wal-Mart.

Do not assume a single person with children came by them irresponsibly, or intended to raise them alone.Oh goody, someone twisting my words. Surprise!

It's clear you're not interested in rational discussion, but are much more interested in twisting words around to turn this into exactly the kind of pointless oversimplification I was trying to avoid.

Yes there are all kinds of circumstances and to say people should always get or never get welfare is silly. freakin duh.

And again IMO it is the way welfare is (mis)handled by gov't that I detest the most......although people who abuse or "milk" it - not saying that is everyone, for those still painfully slow on the uptake - IMO aren't exactly to be applauded either.

bigred
24th October 2007, 11:06 AM
You know what, I might agree with you if you weren't so rapid and foaming. Take your fuming and point it at the right person. lol. Wow the pot/kettle thing to boot, what a shock. You might want to try less coffee in the morning.

I agree with personal accountability (especially for mortage lenders right now).amazing, something we agree on.

What about women who are forced into unprotected sex by their husband?we call that "rape" FYI.

is it their fault their husband uses sex as a form of intidimidation and control? (This is just a small sector I know, but what about them.)Yes it's their fault.

Hey ask a stupid question.......

When birth control is taught to all children, then perhaps this strategy would work.Disregarding the whole topic of teaching this to children (depending on your definition of the term)......cmon now, don't forget it's people's RIGHT to have kids. So what if some of those people who exercise that right can't afford to raise them? We'll let them milk the gov't and cry about how they can't afford to raise them and it's society's fault, blah blah etc. Great idea.

balrog666
24th October 2007, 11:09 AM
And it's this sort of irresponsible BS from the right-wingers that we liberals get upset about. Surprise! Many people have kids within a properly sanctified marriage.


Married people are incapable of planning their families or understanding their own finances? Who knew?

Or did they just make a few poor decisions?

Then something happens to that marriage: the husband becomes abusive so the wife walks out, or one spouse starts seeing another person, and the other spouse walks out when the affair is discovered,


Sounds like several more bad decisions.

or a spouse suddenly becomes unable to work due to illness or death.


Choosing to raise a family with no insurance? Gosh, sounds like another bad decision!

The remaining spouse, the one left with the kids, suddenly discovers his/her life taking a very different course from the one he/she thought it was going to, or had planned on. If the plan was "I'll raise my kids while my spouse makes the money," the person may not have good marketable skills. So it's flipping burgers at McDonald's or being a greeter at Wal-Mart.


Reaching adulthood with absolutely no skills? Whom do we blame that one on?

And then having to get a job? With benefits? Oh, the horror!

Do not assume a single person with children came by them irresponsibly, or intended to raise them alone.


Right ... check it out first and then blame them. Okay!

bigred
24th October 2007, 11:13 AM
Hi, I'm Fertile Myrtle. I had children while on birth control and married. I used your tax money to have myself sterilized after two, and you are more than welcome.

I was on welfare and medicaid during my last pregnancy, because my husband was a functioning and abusive alcoholic and I was trying like hell to leave him. But my religious beliefs drove me back to him time and again, because I felt God would punish me (more) if I dissolved my marriage for any reason other than adultery, and I couldn't (yet) prove my husband was cheating on me.

However, I did eventually leave him, and leave religion, and have not used welfare since.

You are welcome.I'm truly sorry for the hardships you endured.

Also based on other posts of yours I think you are certainly intelligent enough to realize this is not the kind of circumstance I was referring to. Once more: things should be taken on a case-by-case basis, of course.

bigred
24th October 2007, 11:16 AM
there's no pleasing some people. Can't afford kids, don't have them. Get pregnant? Don't abort. Birth control? That goes against God's will and heaven forbid we make cheap and reliable birth control easily available, or provide acceptable options if it fails. If you aren't well-off, I guess you just aren't supposed to have sex. Or if you do get pregnant, the only acceptable option is the heart wrenching choice to give your child to a rich family for adoption, which they are prohibited by law for paying you for.
Alright, more twisting of my words. What a surprise. Much as I hate labelling and I don't doubt conservatives do it too, it really does seem to be a favorite tactic of liberal extremists.

Talk about a rapid digression - over n out

KoihimeNakamura
24th October 2007, 11:58 AM
Does that avg. factor in the 8-9 month work year, and a rich bennies and retirement package that would make a 1970s auto worker blush?

Yeah...din't think so. See, when that $44k is TAKE home, it turns it into more like about $60k. And even high schools do not have that many administrators. Here, a top teacher (guaged by years, not skills) earns (avg.) $50+k/yr. and on top of that gets the bennies package including insurance, covering the teacher's entire family that would cost me something around $20k/yr. On top of that, is the retirement package, another $35-40k a year in value, not coming out of the teacher's pocket. You do the math.

Proof?

If your transient camps are anything like ours, they are filled to capacity with illegals. Yes, many of them are middle aged to slightly older (you don't live much past 50 or so in Mexico).
Most are veterans, actually.


The American "transients" you are seeing are not
"workers" but rather "drunks and druggies." This is a whole 'nother problem.

Every "one case" is among many. If it is typical, it becomes the baseline.

Tokie

Sure, proof?

slingblade
24th October 2007, 12:12 PM
I'm truly sorry for the hardships you endured.

Also based on other posts of yours I think you are certainly intelligent enough to realize this is not the kind of circumstance I was referring to. Once more: things should be taken on a case-by-case basis, of course.

What I'm trying to get across to you is that when you say "don't have kids if you can't afford 'em," what you're actually saying is "don't have any sex with anyone unless you have money for kids first, and know that you'll always have that money, regardless of what may happen in a future none of us can foresee."

It might be nice if we could all control the single strongest and most primal urge we have, just so we won't inconvenience you in any way, but I don't think that's a realistic demand to propose, much less make.

I also find it arrogant and selfish in the extreme. YMM (and apparently does) V.

Dancing David
24th October 2007, 01:00 PM
lol. Wow the pot/kettle thing to boot, what a shock. You might want to try less coffee in the morning.

Really, no ranting today.


amazing, something we agree on.

Not really.


we call that "rape" FYI.

And it still happens that women married to abusive husbands have children they did not plan on. And sometimes they end up raising them.


Yes it's their fault.

I guess we use different defintions.


Hey ask a stupid question.......

there are no stupid question, some answers may border on sarcasm.


Disregarding the whole topic of teaching this to children (depending on your definition of the term)......cmon now, don't forget it's people's RIGHT to have kids. So what if some of those people who exercise that right can't afford to raise them? We'll let them milk the gov't and cry about how they can't afford to raise them and it's society's fault, blah blah etc. Great idea.
Really, how much do you get for each child and for how long?

May vary from state to state. TANF has a five year limit. Then it is food stamps and medical for the children only. No more cash, if you got it.

Ziggurat
24th October 2007, 01:33 PM
there are no stupid question,

... just a lot of inquisitive idiots.

Sorry, that's not directed at anyone, I just like the saying. :blush:

JoeEllison
24th October 2007, 02:21 PM
What I find interesting is how gleeful some people are to hurt children in order to make a philosophical and political point. I cannot imagine having such warped "values", but there it is.

Tokenconservative
24th October 2007, 02:54 PM
there's no pleasing some people. Can't afford kids, don't have them. Get pregnant? Don't abort. Birth control? That goes against God's will and heaven forbid we make cheap and reliable birth control easily available, or provide acceptable options if it fails. If you aren't well-off, I guess you just aren't supposed to have sex. Or if you do get pregnant, the only acceptable option is the heart wrenching choice to give your child to a rich family for adoption, which they are prohibited by law for paying you for.


Begging the question, anyone?

Tokenconservative
24th October 2007, 03:03 PM
There's something to be said for the idea that the health of a society can be judged by how it treats its weakest members... and by that measure, America isn't doing as well as it could be. There is NO reason why a wealthy country should have children without health care, working people who can't afford housing, and other basic needs taken care of within the society. I'm not talking about "handouts for the lazy", I'm talking about taking care of kids, and making sure than an honest day's work earns a living wage.

Yes, since America is not perfect, we should just ashcan the whole thing!

Sheesh.

Can you show me where children are starving on the streets of America? Can you provide proof of elderly deciding between heat and a can of Alpo? Something real, please...not Oprah.

Every child in America has healthcare. The very poor have Medicaid and other state options. You cannot be turned away from an emergency room whether it's in Beverly hills or the Southside of Chicago. This is why so many hospitals on the border are going under....Mexicans cross the border for "free" medical care in our ERs. Had anyone the stones to do such a study, I'd bet we'd find that SoCal hospitals will be enjoying a little black ink since the fires are keeping illegals from crossing there right now.

What other "basic needs" are not taken care of in this country and where is it that an "honest day's work" doesn't earn you pay? Can you point to the hobo camps filled with hungry families? Where are the cruel orphanages, the workhouses, the treadmills? Am I simply so insulated from these here in my gated, lilly-white enclave that I never see these?

If America is filled with these, why do we have chronic overemployment (something down below 5% unemployment)? Where are the NYTimes, TIME, CBS, CNN white papers on this tragedy?

Tokie

Tokenconservative
24th October 2007, 03:04 PM
Most are veterans, actually.




Proof?

Tokie

Tokenconservative
24th October 2007, 03:11 PM
What I'm trying to get across to you is that when you say "don't have kids if you can't afford 'em," what you're actually saying is "don't have any sex with anyone unless you have money for kids first, and know that you'll always have that money, regardless of what may happen in a future none of us can foresee."

It might be nice if we could all control the single strongest and most primal urge we have, just so we won't inconvenience you in any way, but I don't think that's a realistic demand to propose, much less make.

I also find it arrogant and selfish in the extreme. YMM (and apparently does) V.

Actually, this used to be the standard: you didn't have sex unless you could AFFORD the possible out come. This is why you'd see 35 yr old men marrying 16 yr-old women.

Is that optimal or even possible in our society? No. And yes, there were a few (yes, only a few...not that many, society's reaction was severe enough so that it rarely happened) "accidents" so no, it was not perfect as liberals require. It was a set of social values, morals and standards that worked pretty well to keep people from having kids when they couldn't afford them.

Animals don't have children they cannot "afford." In very tough times, they suppress the sexual urge and when any of the higher mammals give birth to young they cannot support they either abandon them or eat them.

Are you suggesting we act more like animals...a modest proposal, perhaps?

Tokie

LostAngeles
24th October 2007, 03:37 PM
Married people are incapable of planning their families or understanding their own finances? Who knew?

Or did they just make a few poor decisions?




Sounds like several more bad decisions.




Choosing to raise a family with no insurance? Gosh, sounds like another bad decision!




Reaching adulthood with absolutely no skills? Whom do we blame that one on?

And then having to get a job? With benefits? Oh, the horror!




Right ... check it out first and then blame them. Okay!

My mom worked at McDonalds.

See, my father turned out to be terribly irresponsible. Mom was too, until she realized that yes, she could get pregnant (she was supposed to be infertile) and needed to take care of her child. So Mom shaped up, but Dad really didn't. And Mom tried to manage the house and the money and finish school while Dad spent a lot of time trying to get rich quick and doing drugs.

When she got pregnant with my sister (which, again, wasn't supposed to be able to), my paternal grandmother (who's from Korea) insisted we all move in and that Mom stay home and handle the babies. Dad, being spoiled, moved us in.

And about then was when Mom decided she couldn't have us kids live like that and moved us up to MA to live with her parents. Since she had left art school and had no degree, she took the first job she could, which ended up being McDonalds. After a year of that, she waitressed for several more, in the process moving us out of our grandparents home. Then when she got a somewhat better job, we got a slightly bigger apartment. At last, when she got the housing voucher, we got a nice little row house, she went back and finished school and now works as a pre-school teacher.

She did this with no more than day-care voucher, state health insurance for us kids, fuel assistance during the winters, and the eventual housing voucher. No child support and some support from my maternal grandparents.

So, considering all that...

...I guess Mom should have aborted the both of us.

Sorry for not getting scraped off, bigred and balrog666.

slingblade
24th October 2007, 04:03 PM
Actually, this used to be the standard: you didn't have sex unless you could AFFORD the possible out come. This is why you'd see 35 yr old men marrying 16 yr-old women.

Evidence?

Pin down "used to be." Give it a date and location. Just when are you talking about, and where?

Is that optimal or even possible in our society? No. And yes, there were a few (yes, only a few...not that many, society's reaction was severe enough so that it rarely happened) "accidents" so no, it was not perfect as liberals require. It was a set of social values, morals and standards that worked pretty well to keep people from having kids when they couldn't afford them.

Animals don't have children they cannot "afford." In very tough times, they suppress the sexual urge and when any of the higher mammals give birth to young they cannot support they either abandon them or eat them.

Are you suggesting we act more like animals...a modest proposal, perhaps?

Tokie

No. You are.

You don't need to ask me what I'm suggesting. In fact, any time a question starts with "Are you saying, suggesting, do you mean?" I can always smell a flaming strawman.

I said exactly what I meant. If you need to read it over and over until you understand it, be my guest. But exactly what I meant is right there in the words I used.

volatile
24th October 2007, 04:15 PM
Proof?

Tokie

You want a link, LIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIINNNNKKKK? Perish the thought someone should make an unsupported statement, huh? ;)

shuize
24th October 2007, 04:20 PM
What I'm trying to get across to you is that when you say "don't have kids if you can't afford 'em," what you're actually saying is "don't have any sex with anyone unless you have money for kids first, and know that you'll always have that money, regardless of what may happen in a future none of us can foresee."

It might be nice if we could all control the single strongest and most primal urge we have, just so we won't inconvenience you in any way, but I don't think that's a realistic demand to propose, much less make.

I also find it arrogant and selfish in the extreme. YMM (and apparently does) V.


To this I'd say: Have as much sex as you like. But if you do get pregnant, please don't expect me to pay for it. I, in turn, promise to do the same. In my view, that is neither arrogant nor selfish.

The same goes for people who don't want to buckle down in school or make other poor financial and lifestyle choices. It's a free country. Everyone is free to make their own decisions. But being a responsible adult means taking responsibility for one's decisions and not expecting other people to have to carry that burden in addition to their own.

KoihimeNakamura
24th October 2007, 04:46 PM
I'm going to apologize, I was thinking of something else entirely when I said most are vets.

Some are, though. (this is for 2001, I'm looking for something more recent now)


Using HMIS, Spokane can generate statistics like these, which were gathered for calendar year 2001:
8,817 individuals and 5,989 households were homeless during 2001.
6,074 homeless adults, 311 youth living independently, and 2,432 children were counted.
2,244 homeless individuals represented ethnic or racial minorities. Native Americans constituted the greatest percentage of homeless individuals by ethnicity.
4,248 households did not report income or reported having no income, 524 received Technical Assistance for Needy Families or Assistance for Families with Dependent Children, and 356 households were employed.
417 homeless households reported having served in the military.

http://www.huduser.org/periodicals/fieldworks/1202/fworks3.html

Blue Mountain
24th October 2007, 05:24 PM
Married people are incapable of planning their families or understanding their own finances? Who knew?

Or did they just make a few poor decisions?

Sounds like several more bad decisions.
Yeah, I guess the person who's getting beaten up should just be a dutiful spouse and put up with it for the sake of the children.

Choosing to raise a family with no insurance? Gosh, sounds like another bad decision!
If you're not making much money, life insurance is probably pretty far down the list. Also, is everyone eligible for life insurance, 100% of the time at any age?

Reaching adulthood with absolutely no skills? Whom do we blame that one on?
Ah, I said marketable skills. Sometimes there's a difference between what you took at school and what you took a college or university, and what opportunities may be available out there.

Provided, of course, you can afford the post-secondary education in the first place. Oh, right, us liberal type people are just so loony for thinking it's a good idea to spend taxpayer's money on education!

And then having to get a job? With benefits? Oh, the horror!
I agree that it's difficult finding a good job when you don't have skills. Sometimes that's the result of something beyond a person's control (eg, lower than normal intelligence.) Other times it's due to poor decisions: not seeing the person you're going out with is actually a nutjob who's hiding it well, or an unexpected child, or getting bored with the crappy school you're going to and wanting to get out.

"Why can't we get all of life's problems when we're seventeen and know everything?" Guess what? People make bad decisions when they're young! It's an unfortunate combination of reaching physical maturity before the brain has fully ramped up to the task. Alas, they made some bad decisions, so I guess they'll have to spend the rest of their lives paying dearly for it. And so will their children.

Right ... check it out first and then blame them. Okay!
I honestly don't know what you mean there.

Tokenconservative
24th October 2007, 05:27 PM
The federal poverty line is a weird one as most states and programs want you to be at 150% to 250% of the 'poverty line'.

So we have poverty by one definition and then the term is applied based upon a multiplier of the term, so it is a total political football.

The problem i have with many state guidelines is that they use arbitrary figures for things like rent, they give you a 'rent' of $150 even though the median rent may be $750. This is especially true of the Medicaid program.

After the reform of the mid-90s (which Dems then fought tooth and nail, tho Willie took credit for it when it was a unmitigated success, and who are now trying to roll back...) these numbers were changed as an incentive to get people off their dead rears and into the economy.

Tokie

Blue Mountain
24th October 2007, 05:31 PM
To this I'd say: Have as much sex as you like. But if you do get pregnant, please don't expect me to pay for it. I, in turn, promise to do the same. In my view, that is neither arrogant nor selfish.

The same goes for people who don't want to buckle down in school or make other poor financial and lifestyle choices. It's a free country. Everyone is free to make their own decisions. But being a responsible adult means taking responsibility for one's decisions and not expecting other people to have to carry that burden in addition to their own.
Ah, so you're going to move to a little island somewhere and raise your own vegetables and chickens, and live off the grid?

People are social animals, unlike (for example) tigers and sharks. It's precisely because we help each other out that we enjoy the standard of living we do. Helping people down on their luck, or giving then an hand because they've made a bad choice is what makes us (dare I say it) human!

Unfortunately, as a liberal I have a harder time than a conservative does deciding where to draw the line on "down on their luck" vs. "scamming the system". I have a little bit of patience for freeloaders, but not much!

Tokenconservative
24th October 2007, 05:35 PM
I'm going to apologize, I was thinking of something else entirely when I said most are vets.

Some are, though. (this is for 2001, I'm looking for something more recent now)



http://www.huduser.org/periodicals/fieldworks/1202/fworks3.html

"Vet" is an awful big category...lots of Americans are vets. Few, comparitively are "homeless." Of those who are, you can count on most of these being "homeless" because of drug, alcohol or mental health issues (often arising from the drug and alcohol habits). Did being in the miltary cause them to become drunks or druggies? Maybe a few. Most, simply do so out of free choice, like drunks and druggies who happen NOT to be vets.

So let's revisit your earlier/revised statement: some of the homeless are vets.

Ok...and therefore what? Most of the "homeless" where I live (I know, because when I am riding my bike along the rivers I am constantly screaming at them to get the hell out of my way) are illegal aliens (oh..wait! That's right! I don't KNOW they are illegals...they just happen not to speak English and to be living in tents along a river...).

While we don't in my opinion take as good of care of our vets as we should, they still have places they can go to get help. As does anyone else in America who is "homeless" (a diminishingly small number, nearly none of whom are the "mode" of homelessness: the abused mother and her waifs escaping the brute and living in their car in the dead of a Detroit winter...).

And again: nobody starves in America unless they are suffering from an eating disorder so they can stay viable in Hollywood.

Tokie

Tokenconservative
24th October 2007, 05:37 PM
Ah, so you're going to move to a little island somewhere and raise your own vegetables and chickens, and live off the grid?

People are social animals, unlike (for example) tigers and sharks. It's precisely because we help each other out that we enjoy the standard of living we do. Helping people down on their luck, or giving then an hand because they've made a bad choice is what makes us (dare I say it) human!

Unfortunately, as a liberal I have a harder time than a conservative does deciding where to draw the line on "down on their luck" vs. "scamming the system". I have a little bit of patience for freeloaders, but not much!

There's a big difference between helping someone out who is down on their luck temporarily, or someone who has made a bad choice or three and is working to fix that, and establishing (as the Dems will reestablish once they have the Congress, Senate and White House back) a permanent underclass beholden to the largess of government and who can then be counted on to vote a certain way in order to increase that largess every few years.

Tokie

Tokenconservative
24th October 2007, 05:43 PM
Evidence?

Pin down "used to be." Give it a date and location. Just when are you talking about, and where?

No. You are.

You don't need to ask me what I'm suggesting. In fact, any time a question starts with "Are you saying, suggesting, do you mean?" I can always smell a flaming strawman.

I said exactly what I meant. If you need to read it over and over until you understand it, be my guest. But exactly what I meant is right there in the words I used.

1. Pre-approx. circa 1965 in the Western World, with little glitches here and there.

2. I know you are, but what am I!?

3. I believe in order for a strawman to flame, one has to ignite him. And he has to exist. For those of us with readin' com-pree-henshun prolems maybe you can say exactly what it is you mean, instead of tap-dancing (or barn dancing fer dem of us whut's cain't reed nun two gud!) around it.

Tokie

Tokenconservative
24th October 2007, 05:45 PM
My mom worked at McDonalds.

See, my father turned out to be terribly irresponsible. Mom was too, until she realized that yes, she could get pregnant (she was supposed to be infertile) and needed to take care of her child. So Mom shaped up, but Dad really didn't. And Mom tried to manage the house and the money and finish school while Dad spent a lot of time trying to get rich quick and doing drugs.

When she got pregnant with my sister (which, again, wasn't supposed to be able to), my paternal grandmother (who's from Korea) insisted we all move in and that Mom stay home and handle the babies. Dad, being spoiled, moved us in.

And about then was when Mom decided she couldn't have us kids live like that and moved us up to MA to live with her parents. Since she had left art school and had no degree, she took the first job she could, which ended up being McDonalds. After a year of that, she waitressed for several more, in the process moving us out of our grandparents home. Then when she got a somewhat better job, we got a slightly bigger apartment. At last, when she got the housing voucher, we got a nice little row house, she went back and finished school and now works as a pre-school teacher.

She did this with no more than day-care voucher, state health insurance for us kids, fuel assistance during the winters, and the eventual housing voucher. No child support and some support from my maternal grandparents.

So, considering all that...

...I guess Mom should have aborted the both of us.

Sorry for not getting scraped off, bigred and balrog666.

Your mother is the exception.

The reality is that most people like this never straighten up. Fortunately, you also had a strong extended family willing to overlook her..unfortunate choice in husbands.

Many Americans don't have that, either.

And so they should probably not have kids who will end up being raised even MORE by the state and paid for people like...your mom!

Tokie

LostAngeles
24th October 2007, 05:53 PM
Your mother is the exception.

The reality is that most people like this never straighten up. Fortunately, you also had a strong extended family willing to overlook her..unfortunate choice in husbands.

Many Americans don't have that, either.

And so they should probably not have kids who will end up being raised even MORE by the state and paid for people like...your mom!

Tokie

Not really.

While I grew up around some real trash, I also got to see that my mom wasn't alone in trying to pull through and do what's right.

There's more like my mom than you would think and these are the ones who really are slipping through the cracks. The problem is trying to cut off the scammers while helping the folks who deserve it. Can you do it without making it terribly burdensome and filled with asinine paperwork where you fill out the same information over and over again?

It's an imperfect system that needs fixing. I just don't know how to do it without *********** over only those deserving to get ********** over (i.e. welfare scammers.)

Blue Mountain
24th October 2007, 05:55 PM
I'd like to add this thought: I actually admire the "dig yourself out of your hole" approach I see in conservative thinking people.

But what I don't appreciate is the attitude that goes with it that says, "I can do it, so you should be able to do it too!" That's not true! I can do amazing things with a computer because they fascinate me to no end. But if I want legal advice, I call up a cousin who's a practicing lawyer. Why? Because I appreciate his understanding of the law, and realize I'm not good at it. When I want a good meal, I eat out. Why? Because I'm nowhere near an experienced chef. I don't run my own business. Why? Because I just cannot get excited enough to sit down and do the books every month. Or spend hours on the phone cold-calling potential clients looking for business. That's a job for an extrovert, and I'm not that!

Just because some people are good at planning ahead, keeping their hormones under control, and putting their noses to grindstone when required to do so doesn't mean anyone else is. Liberal minded people recognize this and try to structure society in a way that takes this into account, even to the point of paying people who don't actually do "productive" stuff in society. Like musicians and artists :D Or like a friend of mine, a Ph.D linguist at a local university who admitted to me his work probably has no practical application in society at large.

I believe conservative minded people miss the boat when they expect everyone else to think the same way they do. On the good things like making well-grounded decisions and getting an education, and on the not so good things like the intolerance they show toward those who don't share their viewpoint, or (horrors!) challenge it.

Were it not for liberal minded people challenging the status quo, we'd still be hunter-gatherers with a life expectancy of 35 years. We'd probably all be very good at hunting and gathering, but we'd still die from things like smallpox, dysentery, cholera, whooping cough, and diabetes.

LostAngeles
24th October 2007, 06:01 PM
I agree with Blue Mountain. The, "dig yourself out of the hole," mentality is a great thing. Problem is, some of us need a shovel. My boyfriend supports me as do tax dollars while I'm getting my Bachelors. I couldn't afford this myself. With schooling comes some damn, damn fine health care. Best this side of the Mississippi, in fact.

I'm counting my blessings in friends, families, and being able to handle some of the system.

But I have had a few hands digging me out and I can't begrudge anyone else needing the same.

Still, I do have very strong feeling against welfare scammers. I'm trying to keep my blood pressure down though... midterms...

Blue Mountain
24th October 2007, 06:11 PM
There's a big difference between helping someone out who is down on their luck temporarily, or someone who has made a bad choice or three and is working to fix that, and establishing (as the Dems will reestablish once they have the Congress, Senate and White House back) a permanent underclass beholden to the largess of government and who can then be counted on to vote a certain way in order to increase that largess every few years.

Tokie
Yes, that's a very scary thought. Imagine the US having its entire social base and economy go down the tubes the same way as have gone Norway, Iceland, Australia, Ireland, Sweden, Canada, and Japan. source (http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=List_of_countries_by_Human_Develop ment_Index&oldid=166811324)

shuize
24th October 2007, 06:20 PM
I'd like to add this thought: I actually admire the "dig yourself out of your hole" approach I see in conservative thinking people.

But what I don't appreciate is the attitude that goes with it that says, "I can do it, so you should be able to do it too!" That's not true! I can do amazing things with a computer because they fascinate me to no end. But if I want legal advice, I call up a cousin who's a practicing lawyer. Why? Because I appreciate his understanding of the law, and realize I'm not good at it. When I want a good meal, I eat out. Why? Because I'm nowhere near an experienced chef. I don't run my own business. Why? Because I just cannot get excited enough to sit down and do the books every month. Or spend hours on the phone cold-calling potential clients looking for business. That's a job for an extrovert, and I'm not that!


I do these things as well. When I do, however, I naturally expect to pay for them. I don't call up a lawyer or accountant and say "Hey, I need your service, so give it to me for free. I'm entitled to it" which is essentially what people say when they expect others to pay for their poor choices in life. The entitlement thinking is the problem, in my view.

You may not like it, but the fact that I was able to lift myself out of poverty to me is pretty strong evidence that it is possible if enough effort is made. Now that I have, however, "liberal thinking people" say: "O.K., now in addition to the efforts you've made (and continue to make) for your own family obligations, you must also carry the additional burden of those who are too lazy or too foolish to make such efforts for themselves."

Blue Mountain
24th October 2007, 06:22 PM
...snip... Still, I do have very strong feeling against welfare scammers. I'm trying to keep my blood pressure down though... midterms...
I have an anecdote to give regarding welfare scams. A former co-worker of mine had, in his previous job, been an investigator for the provincial welfare department, looking for the scammers.

His take was that approximately 5% of the people on welfare were scammers. Put another way, 95% of the people on welfare were collecting it legitimately.

On the down side, he said the 5% scamming the system were taking it for 20% of its payouts. So 80% of the province's welfare funds were going to assist (hopefully!) those in need, and the remainder were going to the freeloaders. My liberal attitudes don't extend far enough to support them! (I've known a couple of liberals who wouldn't have had a problem with that. They scare me almost as much as the Bush / Cheney / Stephen Harper style of conservatives do.)

slingblade
24th October 2007, 06:23 PM
1. Pre-approx. circa 1965 in the Western World, with little glitches here and there.

2. I know you are, but what am I!?

3. I believe in order for a strawman to flame, one has to ignite him. And he has to exist. For those of us with readin' com-pree-henshun prolems maybe you can say exactly what it is you mean, instead of tap-dancing (or barn dancing fer dem of us whut's cain't reed nun two gud!) around it.

Tokie

I thought you said you were once an English teacher? You should know a little bit about comprehension.

What I said is not dancing around anything. I said exactly what I meant, and I was replying to Red, thanks. On a public forum, you're welcome to reply and comment as you choose, but if the remarks aren't addressed to you, it could partly account for why you don't get them.

And as I never brought up animals, whether idomatically, metaphorically, or even as metonomy or synecdoche, I still maintain you created a strawman by bringing them up in your post and asking if that's what I was really trying to say.

The answer is: no. That's not what I was trying to say. I said what I was trying to say.

shuize
24th October 2007, 06:25 PM
Yes, that's a very scary thought. Imagine the US having its entire social base and economy go down the tubes the same way as have gone Norway, Iceland, Australia, Ireland, Sweden, Canada, and Japan. source (http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=List_of_countries_by_Human_Develop ment_Index&oldid=166811324)


Japan is probably not the best example. Over the next decade or so, I guarantee the social safety net here is going to get a whole lot looser here.

LostAngeles
24th October 2007, 06:26 PM
I have an anecdote to give regarding welfare scams. A former co-worker of mine had, in his previous job, been an investigator for the provincial welfare department, looking for the scammers.

His take was that approximately 5% of the people on welfare were scammers. Put another way, 95% of the people on welfare were collecting it legitimately.

On the down side, he said the 5% scamming the system were taking it for 20% of its payouts. So 80% of the province's welfare funds were going to assist (hopefully!) those in need, and the remainder were going to the freeloaders. My liberal attitudes don't extend far enough to support them! (I've known a couple of liberals who wouldn't have had a problem with that. They scare me almost as much as the Bush / Cheney / Stephen Harper style of conservatives do.)

:D

Thank you. It's little bits like that that keeps my hopes up for people. I know it's anecdotal, but with this species, I take what I can get sometimes.

And yes, they scare me too. Deeply.

Dancing David
25th October 2007, 05:22 AM
Your mother is the exception.

The reality is that most people like this never straighten up. Fortunately, you also had a strong extended family willing to overlook her..unfortunate choice in husbands.

Many Americans don't have that, either.

And so they should probably not have kids who will end up being raised even MORE by the state and paid for people like...your mom!

Tokie


You like your magic words and metaphors don't you?

Have you worked in a homeless shelter?
Have you worked in a setting to help people back on their feet?
Have you really looked into statistics or do you just hold onto your magic mantras?

The truth varies, most people do get off of welfare, if they apply in the first place. Most of the people who gets assistance work and maintain their lives as best they can. They only get food stamps or maybe medical for the kids.

Define homeless for a starter.
Define poverty for another.

Lets us take this statement for example:


The reality is that most people like this never straighten up.

Now what does that mean?

How do you define 'most of these people'?

Do you include the people who get food stamps and medical for their kids? And then once the kids are grown do not receive assistance?
Do you include the people who get assistance after a family crisis and then get marginal assistance?
(Like the medical spendown for families)
Do you know what 'near homeless' means?
Or 'doubling' or 'tripling' up?
Do you know what it is like to go to school in a modern urban center?
How many kids get shot while they live in the inner city?
Or see someone shot?
Or what it is like to get a job with a felony?

So when you say you magic mantra what do you mean?

The reality is that most people like this never straighten up.


Where do you numbers come from?

Why is it when I ask people

"When and where?" they don't answer?

If you work an entry level job, can you afford a car?
If you have a child, is day care affordable?
If your kid gets sick, does your boss care?
Do you know the skills of a Taco Bell worker?

Did you know that most states do not provide ANY services in special education to the slow learners? Individuals who do not have a learning disability but have an IQ below 90 and above seventy do not receive any services to help their education.

So when you say your magic mantra



The reality is that most people like this never straighten up.


What do you mean?

tkingdoll
25th October 2007, 06:38 AM
Not to pry (honestly) but were your grandparents also in poverty (this sounds like a generational poverty thing)?

No, not particularly. Both sets of grandparents were working homeowners. In fact if it wasn't for my maternal grandparents life would have been impossible. They bought my clothes and my rich great-aunt bought my school uniforms. We got free toys from the church and Social Services. My parents were just really, really dumb with money.

Some of my fondest childhood memories are of going to stay with my grandparents and them taking me to the Holy Land (that's McDonalds, folks) then to the pick 'n mix sweet shop. I still enjoy a Big Mac and hot apple pie now.

Some people just have a weird attitude with money. My mom is one such person. I am constantly exasperated by her, even now. She refuses to acknowledge her past mistakes and just makes the same ones over and over (like buying ripoff credit or refusing to use her savings to pay her expensive debt). I don't know if it's willful or just something in her personality.

Darth Rotor
25th October 2007, 10:29 AM
What I'm trying to get across to you is that when you say "don't have kids if you can't afford 'em," what you're actually saying is "don't have any sex with anyone unless you have money for kids first, and know that you'll always have that money, regardless of what may happen in a future none of us can foresee."
No, he isn't. He's saying don't have kids.

Sex comes with the risk of pregnance, as you so well outlined in your previous post. That risk is not an unknown. You can still have sex and not have kids. Birth control, which works in many cases, but not all for folks like you and other Fertile Myrtles, and there is a further on option, the much debated pregnancy termination, aka abortion. It's cheaper to get an abortion than to raise a kid. By orders of magnitude.

Granted, abortion as an issue has a lot of baggage that goes with it. But you can have sex and not have kids.

The emotional, and spiritual if that's where you are at, issues attached to that are yours (or whomever's) to deal with. Each person deals with that in their own way.

DR

Dancing David
26th October 2007, 05:14 AM
Whyyyyyy is it when I ask where and when? the drive by anecdotes stop? Don't they want to give uuuuus the dataaa?
Do they just want to say their bit and not defend it? Whyyyyyyy(ne)?
wah wah wah


can i have some cheese and crackers to go with my whine?

balrog666
26th October 2007, 09:13 AM
Whyyyyyy is it when I ask where and when? the drive by anecdotes stop? Don't they want to give uuuuus the dataaa?
Do they just want to say their bit and not defend it? Whyyyyyyy(ne)?
wah wah wah


can i have some cheese and crackers to go with my whine?

http://www.cornichon.org/archives/Cheese%20rind%20closeup.JPG

http://www.ultramicroscopic.com/images4/UrinalCrackersL.jpg

;)

Dancing David
26th October 2007, 09:55 AM
Now I have to clean the monitor.

:D

Tokenconservative
27th October 2007, 06:05 AM
Not really.

While I grew up around some real trash, I also got to see that my mom wasn't alone in trying to pull through and do what's right.

There's more like my mom than you would think and these are the ones who really are slipping through the cracks. The problem is trying to cut off the scammers while helping the folks who deserve it. Can you do it without making it terribly burdensome and filled with asinine paperwork where you fill out the same information over and over again?

It's an imperfect system that needs fixing. I just don't know how to do it without *********** over only those deserving to get ********** over (i.e. welfare scammers.)

It can't be fixed in America in its current state because too much political power is tied to "welfare."

I believe the welfare reform of the 1990s did a fairly good job of fixing it, which is why the Dems have been desperate to unwind the reform ever since (and will succeed in 2008). There will always be scammers, no matter what you do, unless we go back to a purely libertarian system of the sort we had before the Great Depression--you can't scam real starvation. That too, is not a good idea, nor workable in MODERN America (no matter how much libertarians scream that it is).

Things are vastly different in the US, today.

One problem is turning "the poor" into either victims or heroes, just as we turn "the rich" into crooks and dastards. There is a mix of both, in both groups, but you get a lot more political mileage out of turning "the poor" into victims and claiming that "the poor" are born that way and will always be that way (I grew up in poverty...now I am what most would call "rich"--I have a very substandard education, no friends on the "inside", etc...how'd I DO that!?). You don't encourage people to vote for you by telling them what you will be taking away from them. The Dems know this. The Rs do not.

Tokie

Tokenconservative
27th October 2007, 06:10 AM
You want a link, LIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIINNNNKKKK? Perish the thought someone should make an unsupported statement, huh? ;)

See...here's the rub: I don't care. I will accept or reject your assertion based on its merits, what I know, etc., and if I am really curoious may bother to look some things up about it.

You are lefty, so pretty much anything you believe to be the Trooooothhhhh!! I know is inaccurate at best and an outright falsehood at worst (the latter being the majority of your beliefs).

You are the one who was repeatedly screaming for proof--PROOOOOOFFFFFF!!!!--from me. Then, you make a statement you simply cannot support. We know that I am not going to provide that Holy Grail of Evidence, the link--LIIIIINNNNKKKKKK!!! But YOU are supposed to do so.

Tokie

Tokenconservative
27th October 2007, 06:11 AM
Yes, that's a very scary thought. Imagine the US having its entire social base and economy go down the tubes the same way as have gone Norway, Iceland, Australia, Ireland, Sweden, Canada, and Japan. source (http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=List_of_countries_by_Human_Develop ment_Index&oldid=166811324)


Ah yes...economic powerhouses all!

Sheesh.

Tokie

Tokenconservative
27th October 2007, 06:15 AM
Japan is probably not the best example. Over the next decade or so, I guarantee the social safety net here is going to get a whole lot looser here.

LOL...none of them are very good examples.

Japan is in a sinkhole of its own making, its social programs, a big part of the problem. Norway has no economy to speak of and because there is no hope for the future there, its teen suicide rate is astronomical. Ireland was going pretty good for a time, and is now slowing down...that was mostly due to favorable (to bidness) taxation, that they've now turned around...and are suffering for it. Canada would be like Haiti if it were not for its proximity to another country (Nunnuvut, I think it's called) that is the foremost economic powerhouse in the world.

Tokie

Blue Mountain
27th October 2007, 08:36 AM
LOL...none of them are very good examples.

Japan is in a sinkhole of its own making, its social programs, a big part of the problem.
I agree that the Japanese economic miracle las lost its lustre. Can you find at least one source outside of the Free Republic website that lays the blame for the current woes on their social programs?

Norway has no economy to speak of and because there is no hope for the future there, its teen suicide rate is astronomical.
You MAY be correct on this, but I simply can't accept this remark given the total lack of context. Please cite at least one source that shows Norway's rate of teen suicides in relation to other developed nations.

Ireland was going pretty good for a time, and is now slowing down...that was mostly due to favorable (to bidness) taxation, that they've now turned around...and are suffering for it.
Economies rise and economies go into a slump, often completely outside tweaks to the taxation system. A cite from an article that at the very least draws a link from changes in Ireland's taxation system to the slowing of the Celtic tiger is in order here. Your word alone doesn't cut it.

Canada would be like Haiti if it were not for its proximity to another country (Nunnuvut, I think it's called) that is the foremost economic powerhouse in the world.
:dl: (I think this is the first time I've ever used this)

There are so many things wrong with that statement! First, I'll point out that Haiti and Mexico are both very proximate to that same economic powerhouse, but many things conspire to keep them from enjoying the benefit. I'll venture that chief among them is a very conservative elite that wants to keep everything to themselves and prevent the masses from participating in the wealth. It's actually a liberal idea to build a society where wealth is distributed more evenly.

Second, the US is a powerhouse thanks partly to a huge population (300,000,000 people isn't trivial), an incredible resource base, and relatively compact size. Oh, and nasty liberal ideas like educating your people, providing sanitation, and (gasp) democracy! Ideas shared by the countries I mentioned.

Third, have you looked at what the American dollar is doing with respect to other currencies? Such as the Euro or that "laughing-stock" of the western world, the Canadian dollar?

Also, if you're going to make a joke, at least try to spell the name of the territory correctly. It's "Nunavut."

volatile
27th October 2007, 11:01 AM
You are lefty, so pretty much anything you believe to be the Trooooothhhhh!! I know is inaccurate at best and an outright falsehood at worst (the latter being the majority of your beliefs).

You "know", even though you have no evidence whatsoever? I've heard psychics and dowsers tell me that, too.

You are the one who was repeatedly screaming for proof--PROOOOOOFFFFFF!!!!--from me. Then, you make a statement you simply cannot support. We know that I am not going to provide that Holy Grail of Evidence, the link--LIIIIINNNNKKKKKK!!! But YOU are supposed to do so.
I didn't make a statement. Someone else did - Tokorona. But I just found it hilarious that you, of all people, were asking for supporting evidence.

Of course he should provide supporting evidence - we all want him to. But we expect the same from everyone. You, on the other hand, seem to bitch at others for making unsupported statements whilst dropping them freely and easily yourself.

There's a word for that: "hypocrite".

cloudshipsrule
27th October 2007, 02:15 PM
Is it true that even Americans considered 'poor' from a monetary standpoint(Not the homeless ones.) are wealthier than 50% of the rest of the humans on the planet?