“While the dismal news of endlessly rising food stamp recipients in the US seems to be glossed over by most of the media because, well, stock markets are at all-time highs, in Britain, things are becoming increasingly awful. As the FT reports, the number of people receiving emergency food rations has surged from 130,000 to almost 350,000 in the past year. As inflation eroded incomes and government austerity pushed hundreds of thousands into crisis, the ‘working poor’ has emerged. The food bank provider estimates about half of the households it helped has at least one person in work. During the Great Depression, the desperation was graphically evident with long lines of families waiting for soup; in the new depression, the record levels of starving and needy are hidden by a blanket of EBT cards and direct transfers from government. The situation is no less terrible – no matter how hidden from view. As one food bank manager noted, “the fundamental thing is that more and more people are living an increasingly precarious life financially.”"
Via Zero Hedge
“It’s not hard to see why. For this story, CBS 21 researched what government programs are available to a single mother of two making $19,000 a year. What we found was incredible.
Our family would be eligible for $14,976 in free day care, another $13,400 for Head Start and Early Head Start, $7,148 in housing vouchers, $6,500 for weatherization projects, $400 to pay heating bills, $480 a year for a cell phone, with an extra $230 for a land line, and $182 in free legal advice.
The family would get more than $6,028 in food assistance and another $6,045 in medical assistance. The mother is eligible for $5,500 in Pell Grants for school with an additional $12,000 for the Education Opportunity Grant; SMART Grant; and TEACH Grant.
Our family would also get $6,800 in tax credits, and $1,900 in withholding would be returned.
Add it up and this family can get $81,589 in free assistance. “
Via WHP TV
“An attempt by Colorado lawmakers to ban welfare recipients from withdrawing their benefits at ATMs located inside strip clubs was killed by Democrats Thursday night, even though the state House’s third-ranking Democratic legislator supported the measure.
Democratic Rep. Dan Pabon lent his support to the Republican-led proposal, offered as an amendment during a debate on the state budget Thursday night, because it would hew to a similar federal rule, according to the Denver Post. Pabon introduced a bill on the issue two years ago, but it didn’t clear the state Senate.
State welfare recipients receive their benefits on debit cards that can be used for purchases just like credit cards or to withdraw cash from ATMs. Current rules already prohibit them from withdrawing money at ATMs located in liquor stores, casinos, bingo parlors and gun stores, but the strip club loophole has never been closed.”
Via The Daily Caller
“The federal Disability Insurance Trust Fund, which takes in money via a federal payroll tax and pays it out in disability benefits, ran a record $31.2 billion deficit in calendar year 2012, according to the Social Security Administration.
That means the trust fund has run a deficit in each of the first four years of the Obama presidency.
For fifteen straight years before Obama took office—from 1994 through 2008—the Disability Insurance Trust Fund ran a surplus. In 2007, for example, it ran an $11 billion surplus and in 2008 it ran an $889-million surplus.
In 2009, however, the Disability Insurance Trust Fund dipped into the red and has not returned to the black since then. In fact, each year since then the annual defiict has increased.”
Via CNS News
“Senate Budget Committee Republican staff on Thursday released a description of what they claim is a “major flaw” in the immigration reform plan being pushed by the bipartisan “Gang of Eight”–a loophole that will end up being a multi-trillion dollar entitlement spending increase, with the burden falling on American taxpayers.
“According to what has been publicly reported about the Gang of Eight’s forthcoming immigration bill, there appears to be a major flaw that could allow millions of illegal immigrants to access federal welfare benefits and poverty programs,” the GOP Budget Committee staff wrote in a statement to media. “
“The number of American workers collecting federal disability payments climbed to yet another record of 8,853,614 in March, up from 8,840,427 in February, according to newly released data from the Social Security Administration.
That means there are more than 3 times as many Americans taking disability payments as there are people living in the city of Chicago, which according to the Census Bureau has a population of 2,707,120.”
Via CNS News
“Not counting unfunded liabilities, which involve numbers too large to be grasped, the federal government is $16.7 trillion in debt. The president is so adamantly opposed to reducing spending that even a slight temporary reduction in the rate of its increase caused him to close down White House tours in a petulant propaganda stunt. Yet we read this:”
Census Bureau data reveals that most U.S. families headed by illegal immigrants use taxpayer-funded welfare programs on behalf of their American-born anchor babies. Even before the recession, immigrant households with children used welfare programs at consistently higher rates than natives, according to the extensive census data collected and analyzed by a nonpartisan Washington D.C. group dedicated to researching legal and illegal immigration in the U.S. The results, published this month in a lengthy report, are hardly surprising. Basically, the majority of households across the country benefitting from publicly-funded welfare programs are headed by immigrants, both legal and illegal.
Via Moon Battery
“The sad truth in the USA, as we explained in great detail here, incentives to ‘work’ are increasingly non-existent. Thanks to a never-ending stream of benefits from the great and powerful Oz, as CNBC’s Rick Santelli notes, Disability payments (of which there are 14 million people covered in the US – none of which count towards the unemployment rate) pay around $13,000 per year (versus $15,000 for minimum wage work). However, Santelli exclaims, the people on disability get healthcare; and this program costs the US $300 billion per year. Is it any wonder that only 1% of those who were on disability in Q1 2011 have left? Santelli comments, “I’m not saying there aren’t people that are on disability that shouldn’t be, but much of it is illnesses like back pain… it’s a judgment call,” adding that, “without incentives, large issues go …totally unfixed.”"
Via Zero Hedge
“It is an old saying that there is no such thing as a free lunch, but a record 18.7 million American schoolchildren would not have learned that lesson when they attended school in fiscal year 2012.
That is because U.S. taxpayers—via the U.S. Department of Agriculture—were picking up the tab for their lunch.
According to new data from the USDA, during the average school month in fiscal year 2012, 18.7 million students in U.S. high schools and grammar schools were given completely free lunches, courtesy of the department’s National School Lunch Program. That was up from the record of 18.4 million that was set in fiscal 2011.
Back in 1969, the average monthly number of schoolchildren getting free lunches was only 2.9 million. As recently as 1990, it was only 9.8 million.
In addition to giving away completely free lunches, the National School lunch program also gives away partially subsidized lunches—or what it calls “reduced-price lunches” and “paid lunches.””
Via CNS News