Posts tagged ‘ideology’
Welfare is often unpopular with the voters who fund it through their taxes. So California politicians and academics who support it are now redefining welfare recipients as “workers” even if they do almost no work, and as members of “working families” if they live in the same household as someone who does a tiny bit of work. By doing this, they hope to brand critics of welfare as “anti-worker.”
Fifty-six percent of welfare recipients are in “working families,” according to a misleading recent report by the University of California at Berkeley’s left-wing Center for Labor Research and Education. But the report reached that false conclusion by defining even very lazy people as “workers”: “We define working families as those that have at least one family member who works 27 or more weeks per year and 10 or more hours per week.”
But working just ten hours a week for only about half the weeks in the year doesn’t make you a typical worker, or show industriousness. As Breitbart notes, “If someone is only working ten hours a week, there is probably time to find a second job, rather than rely on government assistance.” The Center that put out this ridiculous “study” is funded not just by taxpayers, but also by government employee unions like AFSCME whose members are hired to administer such welfare programs.
That slanted “study” coincides with a recent push by California’s governor to expand welfare for so-called “workers” who actually do very little work. The Associated Press reported that Gov. Jerry Brown (D) is
proposing a $380 million earned income tax credit” for “as many as 825,000 families and up to 2 million Californians. “It’s just a straight deliverance of funding to people who are working very hard and are earning very little money, so in that sense I think it does a lot of good things,” Brown said of the tax credit. The average tax credit would be $460 a year with a maximum credit of $2,653 for families with three or more children, to complement the federal tax credit program. It would be available to individuals with incomes of less than $6,580, or up to $13,870 for families with three or more dependents.
For an individual to have an income of less than $6,580 at the California minimum wage of $9 per hour (and thus qualify for this welfare), he would have to work no more than 731 hours per year, or 14 hours per week. That’s not “working very hard,” Governor Brown. The Associated Press story, which reads like a press release for the governor’s proposed budget, never even questions his strange claim about this being hard work. The AP wrongly calls this huge, record-setting budget “a cautious approach to spending” even though it does nothing about California’s massive unfunded pension problems, and is balanced only due to tax increases that are supposedly temporary but that most California Democrats now want to make permanent, such as those in Proposition 30.
As the Los Angeles Daily Newspoints out:
In 2013, California’s public-employee pension systems—including those for police, firefighters and teachers—were carrying an estimated aggregate of $198 billion in unfunded liability. That’s 31 times the unfunded liability 10 years earlier.
Governor Brown has largely turned a blind eye to pension-spiking by CALPERS that will explode California pension costs by billions of dollars, half-heartedly objecting to only one of the “ninety-nine categories used” in its “scheme.”
As profligate and irresponsible as his budget is, it could have been even worse: Jerry Brown is a model of responsibility and common sense compared to California’s money-wasting left-wing legislature and its big-spending Democratic leadership (the state legislature is two-thirds Democrat and only one-third Republican). The AP quotes Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de Leon (D-Los Angeles) demanding yet more “investments” (the trendy euphemism for government spending) and promising that “we can and will do more” to increase such spending. State legislative leaders have sought to expand Medicaid and other government healthcare programs to cover illegal immigrants at a cost of at least $1.3 billion annually, which Brown has not yet fully endorsed, although his budget does earmark the more modest sum of “$62 million to begin enrolling low-income immigrants in Medi-Cal, California’s version of Medicaid, on the assumption that President Barack Obama will prevail in a court battle over his executive order.”
The relabeling of welfare recipients as “workers” even when they do little work echoes the approach of the progressive ideological guru George Lakoff, a professor at the University of California at Berkeley, who advocates reframing the political debate in deceptive ways. As The Atlantic noted:
Lakoff offers no new policy ideas. Instead he suggests that the Democrats reposition the ones they already have, and spruce up some unpopular terminology while they’re at it. He advocates referring to ‘trial lawyers’ as ‘public-protection attorneys,’ replacing ‘taxes’ with ‘membership fees,’ and generally couching the entire Democratic message in palatable—even deceptive—language in order to simplify large ideas and disguise them behind innocent but powerful-sounding phrases.
The Associated Press sometimes follows the deceptive Lakoff ideological approach when it comes to government spending, labeling spending on education and social programs as an “investment” even when the money spent will not be recouped later through higher tax revenue, making the reference to “investment” misleading.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Hans Bader
Written by Allen West on June 19, 2014
As I was pounding the pavement, I came up with a list of questions I’d like to pose to a liberal progressive. Well, for every mile it seems I came up with one — glad I didn’t try running 8 miles this morning!
Here you go:
1. If former President George W. Bush was un-American for adding $4 trillion to the national debt, then what is President Barack Hussein Obama who is on his way to adding $8 trillion — and still has two more years to go? Yep, under Obama the national debt has risen from $10.67 trillion to almost $17.5 trillion.
2. If as Obama states, “we leave no man behind,” then what of Marine Sergeant Andrew Tahmooressi, Pastor Saeed Abedini and Kenneth Bae — not to mention still-imprisoned Meriam Yahia Ibrahim – who had her chains removed after giving birth to her daughter, Maya? (And by the way, she is still under a death sentence under Sharia law for marrying a Christian). Nah, those folks don’t help Obama’s political agenda and certainly aren’t as important as recognizing illegal immigrant children “dreamers” at the White House.
3. When the average price of gasoline hit $2.50 a gallon, liberals and their media accomplices went apoplectic (you may have to define that word to a liberal friend) on George W. Bush. Why so silent now, when it’s $3.67?
4. If the late and former President Richard Nixon resigned over a bad case of “breaking and entering” (and the liberal media made a big hoopla over that), what does it take for Barack Hussein Obama to consider the same? Or does the color of skin trump content of character in America now? By the way, I’m planning on my computer crashing next year around tax return time.
5. If it is racist to disagree with the proven failed policies of Barry Soetoro, oops, I mean Barack Hussein Obama, then what is it when liberal progressives disrespect, dismiss, denigrate, demean, disparage, discredit and seek to destroy black conservative Republicans? Funny, all those “D” words come from the Democrat party. Don’t believe me, just look for the responses to this post from liberal progressives (so predictable).
Now, just so you’re aware, be careful when asking these questions to be outside the range of spittle and frothing of the mouth. As well, stand clear so as not to be struck by a liberal progressives wild arm-flinging tantrums as they throw themselves on the floor in a mad rage. These are the telltale symptoms of liberals exposed to the truth — similar to exposing vampires to light. But know that this reaction affirms you are right on the issues and confirms the liberal progressive inability to intellectually respond.