- Pennsylvania Among 'Terrible 10' Most Regressive Tax States
- February 4 Non-Partisan Training: HOW TO RUN FOR ELECTION BOARD IN 2013: HOW TO RUN FOR COMMITTEEPERSON IN 2014
- Republican Governors Opt-In to Medicaid Expansion
- The Reports of Unions' Death Are Greatly Exaggerated
- Ask Allyson Schwartz to run for Governor
- Mind the gap: Opting Out of Medicaid Expansion Leaves Low-income Families Behind
- Jan. 14 Workshop:HOW TO RUN FOR ELECTION BOARD IN 2013; HOW TO RUN FOR COMMITTEEPERSON IN 2014
- Seth Williams on Guns, Jasmine Rivera on School Closures @PFC Meetup Wednesday
- PA Revenue Strong Midway Through Year; Tax Cut Could Have Big Impact
- What to Make of the Fiscal Cliff Deal?
Thinking "outside the box" does not mean being an idiot.
I told Ray the other day that I was worried that with gun violence being so huge in Philly, the Mayor's race would devolve into some sort of law and order slugfest, where once again, root causes of crime are never addressed. That is something we need to deal with head on. Yet, when thinking about that as a worst case scenario, I never seriously thought anyone would argue this: That to end gun violence in Philadelphia, we should make poor people poorer! That will do it!
John Baer, in his column in the Daily News, channels a Rush Limbaugh fill-in, and argues that if we eliminated welfare, crime would be lowered, because so many women wouldn't want the glamorous life of the.... Welfare Queen. You know, since I was so young in the 1980's, I never really got a feel for how well Ronnie Reagan and his band of anti-New Deal marauders used the welfare queen. Yet thankfully, I am now getting a taste of it:
Williams, 70, a conservative who sometimes sits in for Rush Limbaugh on syndicated radio, blames the welfare system and altered values.
He says welfare benefits effectively replace a father and offer too great a "temptation" of housing allowance and food stamps for a pregnant teen in a house without a father.
"I don't know the answer, I really don't, but one idea is making welfare damn near impossible," Williams says.
Wow. That is actually the dumbest thing I have ever seen in print in the Daily News. It is great to see the GOP, here given a voice by Baer, returning to what they do best: demonizing poor people. I fully expect that in 2008 we are going to see that the real reason we have not caught Bin Laden is that welfare moms are hiding him in their beachfront condos in Maui.
I don't even know where to start with this idiocy, but, just for posterity, lets deal with some facts: A mother with two kids, who is on welfare, receives a whopping $403 dollars per month. $403! Wow, you sure can live a life of luxury like that! I wonder why my parents never let me follow my dreams, and live on welfare? I mean, that is high rolling!
And, of course, there is the whole problem that amongst industrialized Nations, we have the biggest income disparities (ever growing), and the smallest amount of assistance for people. Oh, and, we have the highest murder rate, and highest incarceration rate. But clearly, the answer is to take people who are already extremely, extremely poor, and make them poorer.
To be fair to Baer, he didn't neccesarily advocate this; but he did give it space as if it was a legitimate idea. Sorry, John, it is not. And, just because you say "oooooh, I am not being politically correct" does not give you cover. Because when you do that, you are just a two bit Michael Smerconish or David Horowitz trying to shield yourself from being criticized for saying stupid things.
Thinking "outside the box" does not mean you have free reign to be an idiot. And when you are the most prominent columnist at the local paper, you have a responsibility that you just shirked, big time.