By Bill Muckler | TLB Contributing Author
USDA prioritizes work for food stamp qualifiers in farm bill proposal: The four-page document released Wednesday by the USDA lists the priorities in bullets and calls for supporting “work as the pathway to self-sufficiency, well-being, and economic mobility for individuals and families” who receive the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, usually referred to as food stamps. (Photo Credit: Andrew Burton/Getty Images )
More Americans are below the Poverty Level as more and more Americans go on welfare, Section 8 housing, SNAP and other government giveaways. This is not capitalism, but a perverted method to institute socialism on a huge segment of the American population to buy favor and thus buy votes to perpetuate this huge expansion of the corrupt welfare state.
The last three articles posted on the webpage focusing on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) clearly summarized the corruption of big bureaucracies fomenting big corruption. These programs are not only corrupt, but ineffective as all big socialist programs have proven to be.
The Farm Bill: Big and Fat with Giveaways
About eighty 80 percent of the more than $1 trillion-dollar 10-year Farm Bill currently under debate in Congress includes SNAP. This calculates out to be $800 billion of free goodies from the American taxpayers. This is a major financial obligation to socialize more than fifty million Americans at the expense of working Americans. It is vital to understand the serious flaws in current government food stamp programs.
Ineffective at Reducing Hunger
SNAP alleviates hunger and malnutrition in low-income households:
those who choose to participate in food assistance programs generally have greater difficulty meeting their food needs and tend to be more food insecure compared to others that are eligible for programs but do not participate.
These programs are not making a sizable impact on hunger in America.
Subject to Large Scale Fraud & Error
The Government Accountability Office reports:
the amount of SNAP benefits paid in error is substantial, totaling about $2.2 billion in 2009.
Other food programs are worse. The misuse of food stamp money by retailers and consumers is costing taxpayers billions to investigate.
The USDA Agricultural Ambassador Program is a partnership among the Office of Advocacy and Outreach (OAO), Hispanic-Service Institutions National Program (HSINP), Agricultural Research Service (ARS), and participating HSI College or University to provide high school students with an opportunity to intern with USDA for five weeks (20 hours per week) over the summer.
Lack of Transparency
The USDA does not disclose product purchases, or how many total SNAP dollars are spent on each product, nor does the USDA disclose how much money retailers make off SNAP. The USDA refuses to reveal anything. What do they have to hide?
A Form of Corporate Welfare
Public health lawyer Michele Simon of eatdrinkpolitics states,
SNAP represents the largest, most overlooked corporate subsidy in the farm bill.
Food stamp programs guarantee large corporations consistent cash flow, creating a powerful corporate lobbying group that seeks to prevent cuts or changes to SNAP.
J.P. Morgan has contracts for Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) cards used for SNAP in half the states and has spent millions of dollars lobbying Congress. Kroger and Walmart gain large shares of SNAP purchases as well. In some states, Walmart captures upwards to 50 percent of all SNAP purchases. These companies oppose all attempts to decrease food stamp enrollment.
Food Stamp Advertising Emphasizes Enrollment over Need
The USDA has conducted a massive campaign to increase the number of food stamp recipients, even hiring recruiters who must fulfill enrollment quotas. The USDA in its “Community Partner Outreach Toolkit” webpage gives ideas of how to spread awareness and increase enrollment.
SNAP-based bingo games are for the elderly, food-stamp parties, and fliers that that read,
Be a patriot. Bring your food stamp money home.
America and Mexico began a partnership in 2004 to “provide information on eligibility criteria for Food and Nutrition Service programs,” including distributing a Spanish language flyer that tells undocumented immigrants,
You need not divulge information regarding your immigration status in seeking this benefit [food stamps] for your children.
One-third of Puerto Ricans are on food stamps, costing U.S. taxpayers more than $2 billion annually. SNAP has become more about numbers, less about need.
Program Overlap Creates Inefficiencies
The Government Accountability Office (GAO) stated that,
the 18 food assistance programs show signs of program overlap, which can create unnecessary work and lead to inefficient use of resources.
Lack Effective Work Requirements
Eligibility requirements were reduced in both the 2002 and 2008 Farm Bills. The 2009 Stimulus plan suspended SNAP’s work requirements for able-bodied adults without dependents (ABAWDs), a ‘temporary’ suspension that has continually been renewed. This creates an incentive for individuals to not work, because working would jeopardize eligibility for food stamps. Participation in SNAP has doubled among ABAWDs.
Bureaucrats Create Dependency
The goal of welfare programs should be to get people back on their feet. SNAP does just the opposite. It encourages the relatively well off to freeload off the system and for those in need to remain in poverty.
A Burden on Taxpayers : Over-active advertising and loosening of eligibility requirements have permanently enlarged food stamp programs. The CBO projected that by 2022, 34 million people will be enrolled in SNAP and expenditures will total $73 billion. They were wrong as usual. Today there are more than 50 million stealing more than $100 billion.
SNAP Should Be Handled by States: SNAP’s funding comes completely from the federal government, encouraging states to enroll as many people as possible. States see no problem if food stamps are being abused because it is not their money. The states save money which leads to increasing costs. This is socialism: stealing from one group to give to another group.
We are slowly and unknowingly becoming a socialistic country. We have become so weak that we are willing to accept this as the “New Normal.”
Stay tuned. The Muckster will continue to keep an eye open and an ear to the ground to keep my readers informed. I am here to lead you out of the slimy past and into a bright future with 20/20: A Clear Vision for Our future. You are my inspiration. Be a part of the narrative.
Read more of my “casually sarcastic” articles to discover that I am an equal opportunity critic of all types of anarchy and nonsense. Check out the blog.
Spiritus meus es tu. Ego semper fidelis.
God Bless us all and God Save our America. Our Constitution, our Bill of Rights, our American Flag, our culture, our country, our civilization, our currency, our children, our liberty, our safety and our future need you now more than ever. ~Bill