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Old 03-22-2018, 09:44 AM  
Eleazar Eleazar is offline
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Missouri GOP attacks the poor again

Missouri GOP attacks the poor by saying no cigarettes, booze with welfare money
By The Kansas City Star Editorial Board
March 21, 2018 01:48 PM


The Missouri GOP is going after welfare recipients again.

From dictating how recipients can spend their benefits to barring them from withdrawing cash from ATMs, Missouri Republicans are working overtime to crack down on society’s neediest citizens.

Under legislation moving through the General Assembly, those on welfare could no longer buy cigarettes or six-packs with benefit money. While that may sound like a healthy mandate, it also ignores reality, which is that poor citizens also need respites from life’s harsh realities.

Being poor is seriously stressful.

But don’t tell that to the party that seeks to keep government out of the lives of Americans. When it comes to welfare, Republicans prefer to dictate behaviors right down to whether someone can drink a cold one on a summer evening.

“We’re looking at an effort to give folks an opportunity to correct a series of bad habits,” said state Rep. Hannah Kelly, a Mountain Grove Republican.

Perhaps Kelly should take aim at the rest of society, too. A lot of us have bad habits that some good, old-fashioned Republican discipline might drum out of our lives.

The new rules are spelled out in a bill that’s passed the Missouri House and is now in the Senate. It affects recipients of the federal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program that provides cash assistance for more than 11,000 families. Spending money on a prohibited item the first time would result in a three-month ban from benefits. The second time would net a six-month ban. The third infraction means no benefits for five years.

The proposal prohibiting recipients from using their benefit cards to withdraw cash from ATMs is raising serious legal questions. In its rules covering TANF, the federal government stipulates that states “should maximize the flexibility for recipients to access cash withdrawals.”

That means Missouri must seek a waiver if it sticks with the ban. The point here, apparently, is that Big Brother wants to monitor every dollar that welfare recipients spend. Allowing cash withdrawals would prevent that.

A few years ago, Kansas Republicans tried to restrict the ATM withdrawals of welfare recipients to $25. That created a national wave of protest that ultimately led the state to forgo the idea.

For the sake of context here, we’re not talking about a lot of money. Missouri TANF disbursements rank among the lowest in the nation. For a family of three, the payout is $292 a month, or 17 percent of the federal poverty level. The monthly stipend has not changed since at least 1996.

That means the buying power of that $292 has declined over the years by 27 percent.

“There’s an incredible amount of distrust directed at poor people,” said Jeanette Mott Oxford, executive director of Empower Missouri, a progressive advocacy organization.

Lost in the shuffle here is the impact on kids who would suffer if a parent loses TANF benefits under the new rules, or under another proposal that would strip food stamp benefits from parents who are late on child support payments.

In Washington, meantime, the Trump administration is pushing for legislation that would boost work requirements for food stamp recipients. It’s all aimed at discouraging a “lifestyle” of government dependence. Never mind the notion that the majority of adults receiving food stamps already work or are looking for jobs.

All of this smacks of election year posturing. That’s sad because we’re talking about real people in desperate situations receiving a relative pittance.

Republicans have bigger fish to fry, don’t they?

http://www.kansascity.com/opinion/ed...206031724.html
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Old 03-22-2018, 09:46 AM   #2
HonestChieffan HonestChieffan is offline
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lol
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Old 03-22-2018, 09:53 AM   #3
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I mean do I want to pay for other people's non essential items? Of course not. But if they are getting a flat amount of cash that isn't earmarked for anything, I don't care what they do with it.
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Old 03-22-2018, 09:57 AM   #4
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The Star is such shit.
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Old 03-22-2018, 10:00 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by HonestChieffan View Post
The Star is such shit.
This.

When even Jason Whitlock calls you out for race-baiting, wow. You're beyond the pale...
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Old 03-22-2018, 10:13 AM   #6
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You guys don't think everyone is entitled to a couple of Benson & Hedges and a bottle of Night Train at the end of a long day of nothing?
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Old 03-22-2018, 10:18 AM   #7
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I thought this was satire at first...why the outrage over making sure that when people take money from the government that they spend it the way the government tells them they have to?
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Old 03-22-2018, 10:22 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HonestChieffan View Post
The Star is such shit.
Why does it seem like every time I quote something it's this exact comment?...
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"He had no teeth, and he was slobbering all over himself. I'm thinking, 'You can have your money back, just get me out of here. Let me go be an accountant." I can't tell you how badly I wanted out of there."
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I wish I always ended up at gay bars.
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Old 03-22-2018, 10:31 AM   #9
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I'm a lefty and I see no problem with this. Don't blow the money you are being given to help you live on non essentials. That just seems dumb as hell.
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Old 03-22-2018, 10:32 AM   #10
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Attacking the poor? Good grief.....
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Old 03-22-2018, 10:34 AM   #11
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The Star is such shit.
You should see the vermin that infest their Facebook page. It's like the liberal idiots here, only there's tons of them, and they're so ****ing crazy that they make Looniguana seem cogent.
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Old 03-22-2018, 10:39 AM   #12
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you want to smoke and drink, get a job where you can afford to buy that for yourself. It is to help people survive and not starve not feed into an addiction.
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Old 03-22-2018, 10:41 AM   #13
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Why do you guys get to decide how people spend their money?
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Old 03-22-2018, 10:45 AM   #14
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Why do you guys get to decide how people spend their money?
LOL they are given extra money for food, most of the time to feed their kids. So why are you in favor of them spending this money on smokes and alcohol and letting their kids go hungry?
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Old 03-22-2018, 10:45 AM   #15
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You guys don't think everyone is entitled to a couple of Benson & Hedges and a bottle of Night Train at the end of a long day of nothing?
Hey man, that couch ain't gonna hold itself down!!

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