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Letter: Welfare reform

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  • John Charity Spring Back Home in Davis County, UT
    Aug. 1, 2014 7:34 a.m.

    Thomas F Meagher once famously said "The purpose of welfare is to sustain life, not a lifestyle. " That is exactly the problem: welfare has become a means of propping up lifestyles, rather than for the emergency, temporary measure it was intended to be.

    No one can be truly happy when they are living on the government dole. Happiness comes from self-reliance and self-sufficiency. If the current left-wing administration really cared about the happiness of the citizens, it would teach them that principle.

    From the Beginning, it was declared that man must earn his bread by the sweat of his own brow. We must return to following that declaration.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    Aug. 1, 2014 7:46 a.m.

    As long as this applies to corporations as well!

    Right?

    Remember how Fox News blasted that surfer who was on food stamps?

    Yet, they celebrate all the tax subsidies, grants, and "welfare" corporations are getting. We empower them and how do they repay us?

    They buy a foreign company they claim that their foreign company actually owns them. That way, they get out of paying any American taxes. This is called inversion and Fox News recently reported it and not one person on that entire channel criticized this practice.

    In other words, a few hundred dollars per year for a surfer on food stamps? Outrageous! We need to reform the system immediately to fix this problem!

    Billions lost on corporate welfare? Meh! Not a big deal.

    If you haven't seen Colbert or Stewart report this, then you should.

  • E Sam Provo, UT
    Aug. 1, 2014 8:13 a.m.

    Good letter. A graduated program would make all kinds of sense.

  • one old man Ogden, UT
    Aug. 1, 2014 8:27 a.m.

    JCS, you completely missed the point of this letter.

    You are also completely missing the point of the teachings given in The Sermon on the Mount and a bunch of other places by the man for whom our church is named.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    Aug. 1, 2014 8:31 a.m.

    Whose family is on welfare? Whose neighbor is on welfare? Whose friends are are welfare?

    Our family helps each other. Our neighbors help each other. Our friends help each other. Government has no responsibility to care for our personal needs; that is a duty of the people, not of the State.

  • Happy Valley Heretic Orem, UT
    Aug. 1, 2014 8:46 a.m.

    Mike Richards said: 'Whose family is on welfare? Whose neighbor is on welfare? Whose friends are are welfare?
    Our family helps each other. Our neighbors help each other. Our friends help each other. Government has no responsibility to care for our personal needs; that is a duty of the people, not of the State."

    Well then your not doing your job, so the state has to step in and help.

    Oh yeah you always forget that "We are the government, local and nationally, and you can't possible know the needs of everyone in your community, nor would you help, without certain conditions you or your religion would require.
    It's no longer the 18th century, we are not a frontier nation, you are not a closed community in the wilderness.

  • one old man Ogden, UT
    Aug. 1, 2014 8:46 a.m.

    "Whose family is on welfare? Whose neighbor is on welfare? Whose friends are are welfare?"

    Good questions.

    Many of us might be very surprised to discover that a lot of our neighbors and the people we see at church every Sunday are, in fact, receiving some sort of government assistance.

    Whose family is on welfare?
    Some of yours could be.

    Whose neighbor is on welfare?
    Some of your may be.

    Whose friends are on welfare?
    Some of yours might be.

    And if they are not on welfare right now, there's a chance they have been in the past. Or will be in the future.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Aug. 1, 2014 8:49 a.m.

    Welfare Reform has worked in the past.

    It worked under Bill Clinton! Remember Newt Gengrich and the "Contract with America"??? Google it.

    It worked! But reform doesn't last forever. "Reform" is usually temporary. And the forces that got you there the first time... are eventually going to get you there again... and you need to "Reform" again. It's just the way social systems are.

    We are at the point where we need to reform again. But it will have to wait until Barack Obama is out of office. Because he believes Saul Alinsky and his theories. Google it. It's where we are headed today... and where the Progressive movement WANTS us to go.

    I will go kicking and fighting the whole way down... Who knows... maybe we will come to our senses before it's too late. We worked in 1994... it could work again!

    Remember... the Saul Alinsky plan is not to IMPROVE our CURRENT Government. It's designed to overwhelm and COLLAPSE our Government... so the people will BEG for them to replace it with something better (Which the Progressives would claim is "Marxism").

  • John Charity Spring Back Home in Davis County, UT
    Aug. 1, 2014 9:03 a.m.

    Old man conveniently ignores the fact that nothing in the New Testament advocates laziness, sloth, and living off the hard work of others. Rather, man is instructed that he has a duty to work to provide for himself and his family. That is irrefutable fact!

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    Aug. 1, 2014 9:07 a.m.

    I know CORPORATIONS [who are now supposed to be "people" too, right?] who have been on welfare for a few DECADES.

    It amazes me how people like this go after a woman with kids trying to feed her family with food stamps,
    Completely ignores the Corporate Welfare Queens receiving $100's of BILLIONS of dollars in Free hand outs,
    while still making $100's of Billions in profits, and not paying taxes.

    But go ahead,
    write and complain about your neighbor,
    and keep voting for those you support those who TRULY are taking advantage of and milking the system a Trillion times worse...

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    Aug. 1, 2014 9:09 a.m.

    I know it won't happen, and certainly I've said it before, but a single payer health system would be one major component of making this happen.

  • Confused Sandy, UT
    Aug. 1, 2014 9:27 a.m.

    Seriously people... you need to stop the ANTI Corporation comments.

    Corporations as well as Small Businesses gets all types of help from the Government. But they also provides a lot of Tax base for Government, they provide employment for people who in turn pays taxes.

    The letter writer has a good thought, my sister was in a situation where she needed help because of her husband actions (which she had no control). Sorry Mike Richards, but the family was not in a position to help, so she went on welfare to help raise her son. She worked hard to go to school and get the education she needed to improve her life, like the letter writer, my sister was penalized for improving her situation.

    I also have thought that if they had a graduated rate of help as the person improved their income, would help them get back on their feet more firmly.

    Mike Richards.... IF you truly believe that then you do not understand the teaching of your church leaders.

  • Anti Bush-Obama Chihuahua, 00
    Aug. 1, 2014 10:09 a.m.

    It's called enslavement. The Governments whole goal is to get everybody dependant on them. They do not want you to get off welfare and they make it almost impossible to do so.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    Aug. 1, 2014 10:39 a.m.

    One of the most pathetic things that I've ever heard was "the family was not in a position to help". NO ONE would ever be in a position to help if they first counted their pennies, totalled up their dreams and then saw that if they kept a brother or sister or aunt or uncle from starving, that they couldn't buy that new car or take that nice vacation.

    Needs come before wants. Wants come before desires. There is enough and to spare to take care of the needs of everyone but there will never be enough to take care of greed.

    I've spent a few hours reading some of the demographics between Republicans and Democrats. Republicans give 30% more to charity than Democrats but Democrats earn more money than Republicans. Democrats demand that government pay for personal welfare. Republicans believe in working for their own welfare.

    If we don't have money enough to help family, friends and neighbors, just where will we find the $150,000 it costs for wages, benefits and office space to hire a social worker to administer non-existent funds?

  • ugottabkidn Sandy, UT
    Aug. 1, 2014 11:10 a.m.

    There has never been a better demonstration of "privilege" than has been posted here this morning. Point, Welfare from the 80's is non-existent. Welfare lifestyle is a myth. Reagan's stereotype of welfare mom's was a myth and a lie. Point, the state administers aid to the poor. Who is the state? Government is those friends, neighbors and family members that Mr Richards feels so adamantly about. We have SNAP, welfare, Medicaid because those non official friends, neighbors and family members don't help. It is that simple. Taxes to support the disadvantaged is nothing more than you and Mr Richards paying your share to assist these neighbors needing help and despite your attitudes, Utah has more than it's share. It's that simple. If you think that your churches, whichever they may be are covering the needs you are sadly underestimating the problem. "Privilege is when you think something is not a problem because it's not a problem to you personally."

  • happy2bhere clearfield, UT
    Aug. 1, 2014 11:47 a.m.

    Hutterite

    Don't worry, the way things seem to be going is toward a single payer system. As it is, when anyone get medicade, medicare, Obamacare, ect. it is all government money, and therefore, in practice, a single payer system. Single payer systems are fine for those who don't have any other means. Just don't ruin the private payer health system by requiring everyone to be forced onto a single payer (read government) health system. That is what we opponents of ACA are worried about.

    As for a welfare system. Well, I'm going to have to shamelessly wave the LDS flag on this. They generally require something back from anyone receiving assistance, unless the persons are not physically capable of giving such. Remember, Workfare? That is largely how the LDS Church operates its system. And some states have put it into practice too. That way people will not let the "natural man" take over and enslave them. The natural man, by the way, is the basic human nature of being lazy. If you enable that human charactistic, you end up with the welfare queen, or king. God knows better, and thus the LDS program works best.

  • Confused Sandy, UT
    Aug. 1, 2014 11:49 a.m.

    Wow.. Mike Richards.... REALLY? you think that everyone just needs to count pennies and they could help their other families members?

    One of the most pathetic comments I have ever heard is this one MIKE: "that they couldn't buy that new car or take that nice vacation.

    Seriously mike as member of the LDS Church I am highly offended...

    For you information Mike, My father never owned a new car, never went on a "Nice" vacation. Most of our vacations were camping because it was the least expensive thing to do back then. My also became the bread winner for his family at 17 years old, because his father passed away suddenly, he had to quit school in order to feed his mother and 5 siblings. So never finished school.

    He married a women who had four children already, he worked 60hrs a week to support them. He made sure we were taken care of, but we never had extra. EVER!

    I am highly offended that You Mike have dishonored the memory of a man who taught me more about being Christ like and helping others even though he was not a member of the LDS church.

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    Aug. 1, 2014 12:03 p.m.

    @Mike Richards --

    Just curious,
    How many "others" are you personally helping out?

    And don't give me the old 'I WOULD do it, if the Government wasn't already taking from me and giving it to them" malarkey.

    BTW -- Pretty tough words coming from someone who less than 2-3 years from being on "Welfare" himself.

    Are you coming to be collecting Social Security, Medicare, etc.?
    or
    are your neighbors, friends and Family going to be there for you?

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    Aug. 1, 2014 12:20 p.m.

    According to the CATO Institute, the Federal Government has over 126 different welfare/anti-poverty programs. Federal welfare spending increased from $200 billion in 1976 to over $600 billion in 2009. Total welfare spending went from $250 billion in 1976 to over $950 billion in 2009. Annual spending per person in poverty went from $7,000 in 1976 to $20,000 in 2011 (adjusted to reflect 2011 dollars). Welfare spending went from 2% of GDP in 1965 to 6% in 2001. In 2010, with the poverty threshold for a family of three at $18,530, government spent $59,233 per family of three.

    We still have people in poverty.

    The system is not working.

    There is no accountability. There is no expectation for self-sufficiency. There's only the clamour that some "rich REPUBLICAN" pay for it.

    FDR, LBJ and Obama are wrong. Welfare is fueling the need for even more welfare.

  • HaHaHaHa Othello, WA
    Aug. 1, 2014 12:38 p.m.

    Exactly right Mike...as usual! I love it when the crowd who screams separation of church and state, and piously preaches to us about how conservatives can just keep their morals to themselves, but when it comes to themselves, they like to start quoting and interpreting scripture in order to impose their morals on the rest of us. Fascinating!

    It really comes down to lifestyle choices. Families can help each other, if they really want to. Don't give us the lame excuse question about whether any of us are helping needy family members right now. That proves Nothing. Who is going to be satisfied with someone paying their rent and giving them a nutritious meal, when welfare offers so much more in the way of candy soda and cash to buy cable tv and cell phones?

    Since so many cities are now moving towards the "livable" minimum wage, I think we might as well scrap the welfare system anyway. Social Security and Medicare are totally different arguments. Mike and all the rest of us have had portions of our paychecks confiscated every month just for the purpose of our future retirement. Why would we not take that money?

  • FreedomFighter41 Provo, UT
    Aug. 1, 2014 12:45 p.m.

    If the CATO institute says it then it must be true...

  • LOU Montana Pueblo, CO
    Aug. 1, 2014 1:05 p.m.

    @Mike Richards

    Please give us figures on the Trillions of dollars of government handouts to large corporations who do not create jobs and move jobs overseas, move their business to Dubai, have offshore accounts and hire illegal aliens.

    If you would please.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    Aug. 1, 2014 2:15 p.m.

    @Mike R;

    Giving to your church (tithing) isn't charity. Never was, never will be. Charity is what you give to the poor and needy; churches largely use your "donations" to operate; not to feed those in need.

  • wrz Phoenix, AZ
    Aug. 1, 2014 3:45 p.m.

    The Real Maverick
    "They buy a foreign company they claim that their foreign company actually owns them. That way, they get out of paying any American taxes."

    Any company incorporated in the US is a US company and must include all income, foreign and domestic, on their US corporate income tax return. And that includes wholly or partially owned subsidiaries. Of course if they pay a tax to a foreign government that is deductible in some measure on the US tax return.

    And, why are American companies going foreign... either moving there or buying foreign subsidiary companies? In order to stay alive. Foreign competition is real. China, India, Japan, et. al., pay such comparatively low wages that US domesticated companies can't compete. In our current global marketplace many go under resulting in lost US government revenue.

  • one old man Ogden, UT
    Aug. 1, 2014 3:53 p.m.

    JCS, trying to tell us that all who need assistance are lazy and slothful is simply wrong and you certainly know it.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Aug. 1, 2014 4:01 p.m.

    Parting comment... Welfare Reform is a "GOOD" thing. Good for the country, and good for the people.

    It's not GOOD for the people to live on welfare long-term or generation after generation. There SHOULD be motivation to get off it.

    It's not Good for the COUNTRY to dole out welfare checks to people who COULD work.

    It's good for the country to have a safety net for temporary needs while you get back on your feet, and it's good to help those who are handicapped and not able to work their whole life. But that's not "Welfare". So OMM and others can quit the guilt trip they throw out there every time this topic comes up, for anybody accepting their SS Benefits when they are disabled or retire.

    SS is different.

    I don't expect SS will be around when I retire, but if it is... I assure you I won't be turning it down. I've paid a LOT of paychecks into that account.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    Aug. 1, 2014 4:02 p.m.

    Open Minded Mormon,

    You bet I'm going to collect Social Security. I'm an American who paid into that program all my life since I was fourteen. I've been self-employed since I was in high school, meaning that I paid ALL the Social Security TAX myself, all 15% every year all my life. Do you have any idea how many hundreds of thousands of dollars that would be worth if put in a 401K or IRA account?

    I've also paid my own life-insurance at $900 a month, raised eight kids, cared for parents on both sides of the family, and assisted many in my extended family, just like the LDS Church encourages us to do. Unlike those who have their hands out demanding that rich Republicans pay their way in life, my Church and my parents taught me to be self-sufficient. They also taught me that when you pay Social Security you COLLECT it at retirement age. What does the Church you go to tell YOU about collecting Social Security? Did they tell you to give it back to the government?

  • freedomingood provo, Utah
    Aug. 1, 2014 5:32 p.m.

    I saw a thing on FB that said," Our church does more with 10% than the government does with 50%.

    If only that were true. If churches of all denominations were at least solving basic living and health necessities for the poor (as Christ commands us to) the government would have nothing to do, and all the people that hate government welfare could be administering it "their way." Churches certainly take in enough money don't they?

    The family values crowd would rather see a single mother working 2 jobs than at home with her kids. What? You say it's her fault for having kids? But I keep seeing the cries of conservatives that people are selfish because the don't want to have kids... Choose and stick with it.

  • freedomingood provo, Utah
    Aug. 1, 2014 5:43 p.m.

    Mike Richards, arguing that socialism is a good idea. But your friends will say you are living off the younger people that are working.

  • Emerger Magna, Salt Lake, UT
    Aug. 1, 2014 7:05 p.m.

    One old Man: With all respect, I think you are the one who missed the point, not JCS. Neither the Sermon on the Mount nor any other of Christ's teachings say that it is acceptable for anyone read Government) to take money from some people (tax payers) and give it to other people. Charity isn't charity unless it is given freely, without the threat of force. Christ's way was one of persuasion, not coercion.

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    Aug. 1, 2014 7:29 p.m.

    @Mike Richards
    South Jordan, Utah

    Open Minded Mormon,
    You bet I'm going to collect Social Security.

    ========

    Let see here --
    1. Now you LIKE Socialism?, Now why are fine being a "taker"? Why the about face?
    2. You worked hard, and now feel "entitled" to it. Hint: That why you and yours called Social Programs "entitlements".
    3. Good for me -- BAD for everyone else.
    4. "The Church" has never had a problem with Government Social Programs. But MANY - including yourself - do. I have always been in harmony wit the Church, and I'm fine paying into the system, and I'll be fine taking out when the time comes.
    5. Pres. Hinckley and Pres. Uchtdorf talked a lot about having an "Attitude of Gratitude", you might want to start there...

  • FreedomFighter41 Provo, UT
    Aug. 2, 2014 11:41 a.m.

    @ Mike Richards

    " Do you have any idea how many hundreds of thousands of dollars that would be worth if put in a 401K or IRA account"

    Before or after a deregulated Wall Street would have lost it?

  • pragmatistferlife salt lake city, utah
    Aug. 4, 2014 7:48 a.m.

    "We are at the point where we need to reform again. But it will have to wait until Barack Obama is out of office. Because he believes Saul Alinsky and his theories. Google it. It's where we are headed today... and where the Progressive movement WANTS us to go

    Oh baloney. Barack Obama did more for small business and entrepreneurship during the great recession than any Republican has. It was the perfect time to kill them but he propped them up.

    Google it, as if it's on the internet so it must be true. Google is a search engine not an authority. What's the actual source of your information. My bet is if "you Google it" all you'll find is a bunch of radical righties pontificating.

  • Confused Sandy, UT
    Aug. 4, 2014 8:00 a.m.

    Mike Richards said "There is no accountability. There is no expectation for self-sufficiency. There's only the clamour that some "rich REPUBLICAN" pay for it."

    Not sure about the second part, but the first part is actually the point of the letter.

    Mike, The point of the letter is that the Welfare system currently being used does not promote self sufficiency. Instead it stifles it...

    That is where the graduated assistance comes in that the letter writer talks about. If a person works hard to improve their education or whatever and then starts working to get off welfare, the system will work with them until they are totally self sufficient.

    The problem is now is it all or nothing, so people simply choose to stay.

  • RFLASH Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 8, 2014 3:39 p.m.

    Don't forget the wealthy, who get the most welfare of them all!