Finally we are able to point at something (besides record gas prices) as an accomplishment of the Obama Administration: more Americans are finding it acceptable to live off of government hand-outs than ever before.
Food stamps are being used everywhere from cruise ships to casinos. There’s even a YouTube video showing how widely-accepted EBT (food stamp) cards are for non-necessities. Now, more people than ever have turned to the government program:
The Congressional Budget Office said Thursday that 45 million people in 2011 received Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits, a 70% increase from 2007. It said the number of people receiving the benefits, commonly known as food stamps, would continue growing until 2014.
If the economy is getting better, why the expectation that more people will be requiring food stamps? Shouldn’t this have at least leveled-off if the jobs situation has stabilized? The CBO apparently sees an economy in decline for almost another two years.
While food stamps could arguably be for those not necessarily lazy, those opting for disability instead of a job is getting out-of-hand [emphasis added]:
A record 5.4 million workers and their dependents have signed up to collect federal disability checks since President Obama took office, according to the latest official government data, as discouraged workers increasingly give up looking for jobs and take advantage of the federal program.
The number equates to 6% of the active workforce going on disability – a record ratio. The recent rise is attributable to three things:
- the relaxation of eligibility standards by Congress in 1984
- the current Administration’s harmful economic policies
- a climate of acceptance of those that would choose to go on disability even though they are able to work
Having the long-term unemployed go on to Social Security Disability is certainly better for the incumbent President and Democrat Senate. It falsely lowers the unemployment rate by taking those people permanently out of the work force.
Another negative impact is that Social Security is being drained even faster by folks who would otherwise be able to work. The money for SSDI (disability insurance) comes from exactly the same place as the retirement program (SSI) according to the government’s own website:
Social Security is funded through a tax on employers, employees, and self-insured individuals. Everyone who works in the United States pays into Social Security, and a portion of these funds are allocated to Social Security’s disability benefit programs, namely, Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI).
The relaxation of eligibility rules and Obama’s failed economy is accelerating the demise of the senior entitlement program by turning it into a permanent unemployment benefit.
Some argue that people need these benefits because of the failing economy – pretty much the same people preaching Obama’s fantastic handling of that same economy.