Monday, October 28, 2013

Changing Our Welfare State

I've been listening to a lot of talk radio lately and I heard something the other day about changing our nation's welfare state.  I am not super political, I don't align myself with any particular party, but I do think this country is currently headed for the shitter.

First off, let me give you a basic understanding of what a "welfare state" is.  According to the Encyclopedia Britannica a welfare state is a "concept of government in which the state plays a key role in the protection and promotion of the economic and social well-being of its citizens. It is based on the principles of equality of opportunity, equitable distribution of wealth, and public responsibility for those unable to avail themselves of the minimal provisions for a good life."

I feel that in today's society there are too many people abusing the programs offered by the USA.  I have some solutions that are sure to be unpopular with a lot of people, but take some time to think them over.

1. Audit those on welfare and disability, including drug testing.  There are a lot of unemployed people out there right now chomping at the bit for work that pays well. These audits should have a required urine test and its aim should be to help people prioritize what's important.  Do you get your hair and nails done every week, but still have issues with getting food to your kids?  Do you have a drug problem?  Do you spend everything on booze and cigarettes before paying your bills?  Are you on full disability but you really shouldn't be?  Do you have the latest iphone, a fancy car, and party all the time while collecting a government check?  These things should disqualify people for receiving government money with very few exceptions (like having served in the armed forces).

2. Limit time to be on welfare to a 5 year maximum.  Welfare is set up to provide a helping hand, not to be relied upon as a source of permanent income.  5 years on welfare is enough time to assist a single mother until her child is old enough to attend full time school.  Complaining about this?  Try getting a job!  I also think that with limited welfare, there should be a program to get people into a skilled trade (there are lots of options when it comes to skilled trades) or factory work.

3. Reform the "No Child Left Behind Act".  This stupid act means that classes go as fast as the slowest student and/or the slow student just gets passed.  You hear about people not knowing how to read or spell or do simple algebra...this is why.

4. Raise the standards of public education.  Believe it or not, our schools are severely lacking.  They want everyone to feel warm and fuzzy.  They pass out dumb awards (graduating from kindergarten, etc), don't encourage the important stuff (science fair, debate club, etc), and let students fall victim to educational ennui.  They should go back to some old standards like Latin and a basic knowledge of fine arts.  Classes should have more of a group discussion feel instead of the basic lecturing feel because its more engaging.

5. Repeal Obamacare.  I've been against this from the start.  I do not like Obama.  I do not like Obamacare.  I will not support this.  I will work hard and earn my healthcare the old fashioned way.

6. Change Food Stamps.  I've seen people buy the worst stuff on food stamps.  Food stamps should be for basic food stuff: bulk items (flour, sugar, beans, rice, etc), milk, yogurt, eggs, meat, bread, and produce.  No junk food, alcohol, frozen pizza, etc.  Learn to cook and learn to eat healthy.  You'll have less problems and you'll thank yourself.  It's not the government telling you what you can and can't purchase.  It's the government allowing you the opportunity to purchase certain foods with government money.  Get a fucking job and you can buy your own frozen pizzas.

7. Mental Asylums & Orphanages, Bring Them Back.  With social services being a stronger force, I think that bringing back orphanages would be a good thing.  It would give the state a safe place to house and educate children.  Each orphanage could even have a small social service office (2 or 3 people) to help place children, keep an eye on them, etc.  Orphanages got a bad rap at the turn of the century, but social services was not in place at the time.  Also, lets bring back mental asylums.  Why not keep the crazy people in a designated place?  It would mean that part of our taxes would go to keeping it afloat, but there's also quite a bit of research grant money out there too.

If I come up with more stuff, I'll add it.  Do you agree or disagree with me?

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