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Category Archive: Poverty

Mar 20 2014

Welfare Drug Testing Still a Terrible Idea

Mississippi is about to become the 9th state to institute a program of mandatory drug testing for those who receive public assistance, which at least one federal court has already declared unconstitutional (in Florida; the case is under appeal). The New Republic interviews a health policy expert on it:

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Mar 11 2014

Ryan’s Appalling CPAC Talk

Paul Ryan spoke at CPAC over the weekend and delivered a truly appalling and inane speech about how terrible it is to help poor people eat. Why is it terrible? Because it gives them a “full stomach but an empty soul.” Oh, and he used a fake story to illustrate his point in the process.

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Feb 13 2014

Legislator Finds Out How Homeless Live

One of the big problems in our political system is that policymakers are so completely isolated from the problems of real people. Yeah, they love to talk about those tragic stories they hear from constituents, but that’s just for political show. Here’s a legislator who actually tried to find out what it’s like to be …

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Feb 04 2014

Failure to Expand Medicaid = Thousands of Deaths

When Republicans swept the statehouses and legislatures of more than 30 states in 2010, putting many very far-right governors in office, many of them refused to go along with the expansion of Medicaid that was part of the health care reform bill, even though it was almost entirely paid for by the federal government. A …

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Feb 03 2014

Rush Limbaugh’s Advice to Starving Children

In the wake of the appalling story of a Utah school that took school lunches from dozens of children and literally dumped them in the trash in front of them because they had a balance on their accounts, Daily Kos points to a diatribe by Rush Limbaugh on his show a few years ago giving …

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Jan 25 2014

Kevin O’Leary Happy for Billions of Poor People

I don’t know who Kevin O’Leary is, but he apparently has a TV show. And when told that 85 people have as much wealth as 3.5 billion poor people, he raves about what a wonderful thing that is. Because apparently it helps starving children in developing countries aspire to be Warren Buffett. Or something.

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Jan 22 2014

If Martin Luther King Were Alive Today

Monday was the national holiday to celebrate the birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr. (and it should be noted that a great many conservatives tried like hell to stop that holiday from being created, including “moderates” like John McCain). ThinkProgress notes some of MLK’s more radical views and they suggest what he would be saying …

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Jan 14 2014

The Health Impact of Food Stamp Cuts

With Congress likely to pass a farm bill with an additional $9 billion in cuts to food stamps on top of the cuts that have already taken place, a group of doctors is speaking out against those cuts and pointing out that they could backfire by increasing health care and Medicaid costs.

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Jan 10 2014

Welfare Fraud as Rare as Voter Fraud

We’ve seen several states run by Republicans launch major investigations to find voter fraud that they claim is rampant only to come up almost entirely empty. Maine Gov. Scott LePage decided to give it a try with welfare fraud and — surprise, surprise — finds only a tiny problem. But like always, they announce it …

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Dec 31 2013

Atheism, Homelessness and False Hope

You may well have seen this column by Chris Arnade, a physicist turned turned Wall Streeters turned activist against homelessness, in The Guardian. His claim is that atheism is “an intellectual luxury for the wealthy.” And his only attempt at an argument for that conclusion is that the homeless people he works with typically believe …

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Dec 06 2013

O’Reilly: Jesus Wouldn’t Give Food Stamps to Lazy Bums

Bill O’Reilly knows Jesus. It’s a little known fact that Jesus was the one who introduced him to the joys of using falafel as a sex toy in the shower. So Bill can speak for Jesus when he says that, despite his many commands to take care of the poor, he wouldn’t bother with all …

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Nov 26 2013

Why Private Charity Can’t Replace Government Programs

One of the arguments from conservatives and libertarians that leaves me shaking my head is the claim that if the government would just stop helping poor people, private charity would make up the difference. Christopher Flavelle crunches the numbers and shows why this is nonsense.

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Nov 25 2013

Stossel: Homeless People are Faking It

Fox News’ John Stossel presented his latest bit of vile “reporting” to tweedledum, tweedledummer and tweedledumbest (the Fox morning show team of Brian Kilmeade, Steve Doocy and Elizabeth Hasselbeck) and revealed just what a horrible human being he really is.

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Nov 21 2013

State Rep. Torments Homeless People

Hawaii State. Rep. Tom Brower, a Democrat (believe it or not), has decided that he hates homeless people so much that he’s going to wander the streets with a sledgehammer and destroy things to make their lives much more difficult. The word “asshole” comes to mind.

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Sep 26 2013

Food Stamps vs Crop Insurance

Here’s a surprisingly rational column by Henry Olsen in the conservative magazine National Review about the House Republicans and their obsession with cutting food stamps. He points out that those same Republicans ignore more expensive programs in the same bill (food stamps are part of the annual farm bill) that primarily benefit those who don’t …

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