Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Welfare reform still isn't done yet...

What's described here is something seen in the "hood" by yours truly. Even though this story is out of the state of Maine. And I'm sure many of you don't think welfare when thinking about that state.
During the 2010 and 2011 summers, I was a cashier at Wal-Mart #1788 in Scarborough, Maine. I spent hours upon hours toiling away at a register, scanning, bagging, and dealing with questionable clientele. These were all expected parts of the job, and I was okay with it. What I didn’t expect to be part of my job at Wal-Mart was to witness massive amounts of welfare fraud and abuse.

I understand that sometimes, people are destitute. They need help, and they accept help from the state in order to feed their families. This is fine. It happens. I’m not against temporary aid helping those who truly need it. What I saw at Wal-Mart, however, was not temporary aid. I witnessed generations of families all relying on the state to buy food and other items. I literally witnessed small children asking their mothers if they could borrow their EBT cards. I once had a man show me his welfare card for an ID to buy alcohol. The man was from Massachusetts. Governor Michael Dukakis’ signature was on his welfare card. Dukakis’ last gubernatorial term ended in January of 1991. I was born in June of 1991. The man had been on welfare my entire life. That’s not how welfare was intended, but sadly, it is what it has become.
I remember one night I was at a Jewel in the suburbs. This woman in front of me was dressed really nice and her shoes and fingernails appeared to match colorwise. She couldn't possibly be on government assistance looking the way that she did, right? Wrong, she paid for her groceries with food stamps. To this day and this was many years ago, that still blows me!

In Illinois, people on government assistance are issued link cards similar to the image on the top. There are scams people pull with that as well. People will trade food stamps for cash. They will literally stand outside of the grocery store finding some poor sucker who would accept the card in exchange for cash. Usually, I believe, the value of what's on the card. Of course you're supposed to use the card for the necessities.

Also, this posting shows how people on government assistance even have an appetite for expensive cellphones. If it has been determined that you need help paying for food then why do you have a brand new cell phone in your possession. Not only that do you really need anything more beyond phone service. If you can't pay for your food there's no way you should also be able to afford a data plan!

Via Instapundit!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I was a food stamp and medical caseworker. I don't really care about the "huge" level of abuse by clients regarding benefits, because I saw the many other ways in which their lives were degraded and stigmatized in order to qualify for those benefits. And what I really, don't understand, is how anyone can criticize another low-income or moderate-income individual who cuts corners or who takes a little here and there, and stand by and say nothing regarding the far greater and really staggering theft of public monies committed by corporate tax thieves and white-collar crime. Banks, corporations, insurance companies, finance companies, CEO's, military profiters; these are the ones who are really stealing the public blind, but who in this country cares or questions this? Nope, instead we are content to be myopic and fight among ourselves and be envious of others over the tiny scraps thrown to us by those who are powerful and really manipulate the system to their advantage.

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