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Welfare Queens. Well, not really, I hope.

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Posts

  • Modern ManModern Man Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    EWom wrote: »
    Montana


    And I just remember i used to hang out with that kid (hell he was one of the first kids to get a sega in the neighborhood). I say the mom might be a prostitute now, based entirely off the fact that there were quite often different dudes at her house when we'd go over to play sega, just a totally random thought that popped into my head 20 some years later :p

    As for the other guy he got busted with a large amount of cocaine, weed, and small amount of meth IIRC. All I remember thinking is the world is probably better off with him in prison, than out.. he wasn't a very good type of person.
    I don't think anyone should be surprised by the fact that a family where mom is a prostitute and the son is a drug addict/dealer isn't above a little welfare fraud.

    People who are on welfare legitimately don't seem to have a particularly glamorous lifestyle, from what I've seen handling pro bono matters. I suppose you can set yourself up pretty well if you're smart enough to commit welfare fraud and collect benefits for 56 people. But, most people on welfare aren't that smart, frankly.

    And ever since welfare reform in the 90's, welfare rolls across the country have been cut pretty dramatically.

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  • PonyPony Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Endomatic wrote: »
    Which, as I'm sure you know, does happen. A lot.

    Shit man, I see it EVERY DAY in my city.

    so prosecute those people for being child abusers, if they are

    if they aren't, if they're just some kind of weirdo quasi-asthetic who is willing to live in a flophouse as long as they have a PS3? that's none of your fucking business, quite frankly

    nobody gets to dictate to me how i choose to survive

    if i choose to live in a shitty apartment in the ghetto so that i can spend that money on a fancy cellphone and new Xbox 360 games every month, that's none of your fucking business. you don't get to dictate if a person is being responsible with their money.

    that's how life works. the government doesn't get to question your financial decisions as being wise or not. that is not society's responsibility.

    the government welfare systems (including the disability system i live off of) exist to give people the money they need to survive, as determined by current costs of living and etc.

    if that person chooses to spend that money like a god damn moron, that's their problem. if they have children and are buying liquor instead of buying those children food, obviously that's a problem! and somewhere that can be interceded

    but ultimately, people are free to make their own choices for themselves. i do know that, at least in Ontario, if you've been on welfare for a while you are required to start attending classes on how to get a job and how to manage your finances, because the reality is a lot of poor people are bad with money and that's part of how they stay poor.

    attendance to those classes is a requirement of continuing to receive assistance, but if you still end up jobless and buying a new laptop instead of food... well, that's your problem. all the system can try to do is help and educate you. it doesn't get the right to say "you're too stupid to manage your own money so you don't get to anymore"

  • EndomaticEndomatic Registered User
    edited April 2010
    While I don't doubt that some of the cases you've seen support this view how can you be sure that every case you claim stems from this situation unless you know the family in question?

    Yes, I used to work for a company which would prey on people in situations like that.

    A rent to own company. They are large in the U.S.

    Every day I would bring Furniture, TVs and other big ticket items into the homes of people who truly truly could not afford these things.

    Needless to say, the whole process disgusted me. The misuse of funds by the people. The predatory actions of my employer, and of myself since I was representing them. The job bothered me greatly, and changed my world outlook quite a bit. It was a massive eye opener.

    I don't do that any longer, but fuck me if my previous employer isn't FLOURISHING in my city even now.
    nobody gets to dictate to me how i choose to survive

    if i choose to live in a shitty apartment in the ghetto so that i can spend that money on a fancy cellphone and new Xbox 360 games every month, that's none of your fucking business. you don't get to dictate if a person is being responsible with their money.

    that's how life works. the government doesn't get to question your financial decisions as being wise or not. that is not society's responsibility.

    I don't disagree Pony. I am just saying that the problem exists in spades. Some people don't believe it, or are unsure about exactly how large of a problem it is, or has the potential to be.

    In my city, Lethbridge, Alberta, there is a great deal of this fraudulent activity. It used to be much easier in the early 90's. You could be on EI, Welfare and have a job. Not anymore. Still... the problem exists, and it's large.

    However, every day that I see a person that clearly abuses the system, I see 5 that are lucky to be alive because that system is in place.
    I am not angry about it really. I just see it, and it makes me sad.

    What makes me angry is that the government systems don't go a step further and either a.) Get these people some job training rather than doling out money every month or at the very least, b.) Teach them how to manage money and spend it correctly. Ideally both.

    Job training can be found, but from my experience, only if the recipient desires it. Because the welfare system is such a massive burden on the economy, the gov't is finally starting a lot of these training programs, which is great, but it's not quite enough yet.

    Will everyone follow along? Absolutely not.
    But some will, and many want to learn these things but are not sure how to go about doing it.

    When I was in high school, I was never taught word one about Credit, how to manage it and how to use it correctly. It was trial and error for me. Mostly error.
    These folks don't have that either, and they need it now and still are not getting it. That's what makes me angry.

  • DuffelDuffel Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    The problem with welfare fraud isn't really that there's some subculture of people living a luxurious lifestyle on the public dime, which I suppose could happen occasionally but I have a hard time believing is anywhere near common. I've seen a good deal of welfare fraud - I've had some family members who were social workers - where I come from and the people involved are usually dirt poor. The problem is that they don't really mind being dirt poor.

    Another problem is that in many places the welfare system is broken. In my state it's very difficult to get public assistance if you're even marginally employed, as the system is geared toward helping people who are entirely out of work. So, a lot of times people are better off not getting any part-time work to tide them over between jobs, which in turn makes it more difficult to get a job later on. It's also much more difficult to get assistance if you aren't a parent. Public assistance options for single people suck.

    Finally, it's also ridiculously easy to get prescription drugs, considering that most people defraud the system by erroneous claims of injury or mental disability. These drugs usually go up somebody's nose or get sold to someone else, contributing the drug market and fostering a culture of crime and stagnation.

    I don't think welfare laws need to be changed for economic reasons; if anything, I believe the social support network should be expanded at both the state and federal levels. But all these factors lead to an enduring social problem that needs to be dealt with.

  • WulfWulf Disciple of Tzeentch The Void... (New Jersey)Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    From the sounds of it, your co-worker has no idea what she's talking about in even the slightest sense. Ask her a couple of obvious / difficult questions and let her break herself.

    The cell phone thing is particularly stupid. Cell phones are pretty critical for finding gainful employment in today's world and a cheap cell phone + cheap plan is certainly affordable on a very very small budget. Would she prefer the unemployed don't have access to the tools they need to find jobs?

    You can get a free crappy phone, and a plan for as little as what? $30? $40?

    Potentially Free actually, at least around here (PA/NJ).

    Guess in some areas Safelink costs money, but I keep hearing on the radio about how you can get it free if you 'qualify'.

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  • bowenbowen Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    My g/f is living large on welfare (disability)

    And by living large, I mean, making ends meat. The people that say they make tons of money or can afford hummers are yanking your chain.

  • Just_Bri_ThanksJust_Bri_Thanks Seething with rage from a handbasket.Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited April 2010
    Well, we had a visitor to the office today and the two got on the whole welfare thing again. I pulled out my own phone when they mentioned it and said "This isn't a luxury item. You know how much this cost me? Twenty bucks every three months."

    She replied that she felt it was a luxury item since she spent 200 bucks a month on cell phone costs. I almost did myself an injury with the eye rolling.

    And then later she said she could get a list of sixty people who were "scamming the system to get a lot of money." and I told her to do it so we could report them.

    I swear, if you saw someone break in to every house on your block you would call the cops, but evidently the appropriate response to someone defrauding the government is to complain about the government.

    I like the woman, and I like working with her but damned if her politics are not fundamentally fucked in the head.

    Some days I just want to smack people with a rolled up newspaper. Or a phone book.
    A folding chair is looking like an attractive option right now too...
  • override367override367 Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Duffel wrote: »
    The problem with welfare fraud isn't really that there's some subculture of people living a luxurious lifestyle on the public dime, which I suppose could happen occasionally but I have a hard time believing is anywhere near common. I've seen a good deal of welfare fraud - I've had some family members who were social workers - where I come from and the people involved are usually dirt poor. The problem is that they don't really mind being dirt poor.

    Another problem is that in many places the welfare system is broken. In my state it's very difficult to get public assistance if you're even marginally employed, as the system is geared toward helping people who are entirely out of work. So, a lot of times people are better off not getting any part-time work to tide them over between jobs, which in turn makes it more difficult to get a job later on. It's also much more difficult to get assistance if you aren't a parent. Public assistance options for single people suck.

    Finally, it's also ridiculously easy to get prescription drugs, considering that most people defraud the system by erroneous claims of injury or mental disability. These drugs usually go up somebody's nose or get sold to someone else, contributing the drug market and fostering a culture of crime and stagnation.

    I don't think welfare laws need to be changed for economic reasons; if anything, I believe the social support network should be expanded at both the state and federal levels. But all these factors lead to an enduring social problem that needs to be dealt with.

    See here in wisconsin you pretty much have to be employed, going to school, or disabled to get welfare (also you have to have kids)

    To get food stamps you must be employed, on unemployment, or attend mandatory "how to find work classes" where the people sit with you and you fill out a report of what you're doing to improve your situation

    I only get food stamps because of federal work study, there's a specifical exemption in there for that because of the stimulus I think


    Frankly someone like my mom having to attend those classes when she was out of work is stupid, a college educated person with 20 years work experience isn't going to just sit and live on the public dime for 10 years until they retire, it was a waste of her time she wanted to spend looking for work and hosting these classes probably costs the state as much as the people that just want to sit home and accept being poor forever

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  • PonyPony Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    So where exactly are these easily exploitable welfare systems we keep hearing about?

    Because everyone here seems to be saying it's hard as hell.

  • Just_Bri_ThanksJust_Bri_Thanks Seething with rage from a handbasket.Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited April 2010
    I'm in Florida, if that helps. Evidentially you can roll in the cash down here, from what I hear. Ow, there go my eyes again.

    Some days I just want to smack people with a rolled up newspaper. Or a phone book.
    A folding chair is looking like an attractive option right now too...
  • SipexSipex Registered User
    edited April 2010
    Not sure Pony.

    I can testify that here, in Ontario, ours is pretty hard to get into as well (plus welfare and Employment Insurance are seperate things as someone mentioned before). In order to get any generic assistance you need to earn under X dollars a week (X being a low number I don't remember) with no more than Y hours. ALSO, if you've lost your job it must be due to lay off, you can't have been fired or quit (unless you're going to school I believe).

    Plus there are the classes you have to take and you need to report income to both.

    Welfare is worse than E.I. here because it actually expects you to expend your savings (this may or may not include selling expensive vehicles/houses as well) and it requires you to report all earnings (Gift money for example), not just wages from your job. Not that anyone reports this money anyways because really, unless your gifter requires a reciept the money can't be traced.

    Add on that they only supply free bus passes and that's only if you have a job, which is stupid in itself since that makes job hunting so much harder.

    I'm glad I was only on it for a month before my E.I. kicked in.

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  • override367override367 Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    I'm in Florida, if that helps. Evidentially you can roll in the cash down here, from what I hear. Ow, there go my eyes again.

    From Florida's website
    Monthly maximum benefit for family of 3 $303/month (2005)

    Yea, wow, you can really live it up :P

    here

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  • Irond WillIrond Will Dragonmaster Cambridge. MASuper Moderator, Moderator mod
    edited April 2010
    Pony wrote: »
    if they aren't, if they're just some kind of weirdo quasi-asthetic who is willing to live in a flophouse as long as they have a PS3? that's none of your fucking business, quite frankly

    nobody gets to dictate to me how i choose to survive

    if i choose to live in a shitty apartment in the ghetto so that i can spend that money on a fancy cellphone and new Xbox 360 games every month, that's none of your fucking business. you don't get to dictate if a person is being responsible with their money.

    that's how life works. the government doesn't get to question your financial decisions as being wise or not. that is not society's responsibility.

    the government welfare systems (including the disability system i live off of) exist to give people the money they need to survive, as determined by current costs of living and etc.

    if that person chooses to spend that money like a god damn moron, that's their problem. if they have children and are buying liquor instead of buying those children food, obviously that's a problem! and somewhere that can be interceded

    I can't really speak to the canadian ethic as regards society's responsibility towards people, and i also acknowledge that there is a distinction between disability and welfare, but in my view, it's absolutely society's right and responsibility to question whether or not they are bankrolling and/ or facilitating irresponsible or undesirable lifestyles.

    Basically, staying home, drinking cheap hooch, eating ramen and playing playstation is not a lifestyle that society should subsidize. if people want to do that, they had better figure out a way to bankroll their lifestyle in a way that is not the public dime.

    i mean we don't even have a responsibility to socially tolerate all lifestyles, let alone bankroll them from the public coffers.

    Wqdwp8l.png
  • override367override367 Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    And that kind of thinking has led to states slashing and destroying social programs left and right. So what if a program helps 32 million people, 700,000 are abusing it?

    Let me put it this way, police abuse, this happens yes?

    Has anybody who isn't crazy advocated abolishing the police department entirely?

    Education has corrupt officials should we burn all the schools?

    From the private sector, sometimes companies make cars that slam into walls, should we outlaw cars?

    This mentality only comes into play in social welfare.

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  • JihadJesusJihadJesus Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Pony wrote: »
    So where exactly are these easily exploitable welfare systems we keep hearing about?

    Because everyone here seems to be saying it's hard as hell.

    Eh, it's pretty hard to do and not get caught eventually. It's not all that hard to work on the side and get paid in cash under the table. The verification systems I know about that are halfway decent are tied into the state UE system - if you're not reporting wages that get reported there, it probably won't get caught instantly. However, the administrators (my boss was a former administrator at a welfare office) get drug over the coals if an auditor finds fraud cases with any kind of regularity.

    The bigger issue among my clients is that, like someone else mentioned, they're completely satisfied with being dirt poor on welfare. That it can be so completely normalized is very foreign to me and really got to me at first (and still does sometimes).

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  • override367override367 Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    I dunno as long as I'm in college I could probably live on the public dime, eat ramen, and play playstation and not lose any sleep over it

    I can't do that though, there is no government teat to suck off of. If I didn't have a job I'd quite simply be homeless, able to eat yes, but nowhere to live because housing assistance rolls take years to get on.

    It's a hot button of mine to hear bitching about our safety net when you can drive a truck through it

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  • MblackwellMblackwell Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Depending on where you shop and how savvy you are, dressing nice as an adult isn't that difficult. Nor is maintaining your vehicle (assuming you could save enough to get a semi-decent one to start and can do repairs yourself).

    It's also usually required for finding employment, which you have to do because you'll get cut off from Welfare at some point. So I'm not really sure why that gets brought up.

    Kids are damned expensive though. Especially because they require new clothes every few weeks/months because those bastards won't quit growing...

    I realize there's people defrauding the system, but it's at an incredibly low rate and if you see it happening you should report it. Note that when I was a kid my mother and I lived in HUD housing, had Welfare for a time, and Food Stamps (and of course knew other people in similar situations). So perhaps everyone who's poor and on assistance really is horrible scum and I'm simply biased.

    Really what they should do is require x hours of community service if you are on welfare, varying depending on the number of hours you work assuming you are employed. Then you could guarantee that everyone's getting something out of it.

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  • AegisAegis Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Irond Will wrote: »
    Pony wrote: »
    if they aren't, if they're just some kind of weirdo quasi-asthetic who is willing to live in a flophouse as long as they have a PS3? that's none of your fucking business, quite frankly

    nobody gets to dictate to me how i choose to survive

    if i choose to live in a shitty apartment in the ghetto so that i can spend that money on a fancy cellphone and new Xbox 360 games every month, that's none of your fucking business. you don't get to dictate if a person is being responsible with their money.

    that's how life works. the government doesn't get to question your financial decisions as being wise or not. that is not society's responsibility.

    the government welfare systems (including the disability system i live off of) exist to give people the money they need to survive, as determined by current costs of living and etc.

    if that person chooses to spend that money like a god damn moron, that's their problem. if they have children and are buying liquor instead of buying those children food, obviously that's a problem! and somewhere that can be interceded

    I can't really speak to the canadian ethic as regards society's responsibility towards people, and i also acknowledge that there is a distinction between disability and welfare, but in my view, it's absolutely society's right and responsibility to question whether or not they are bankrolling and/ or facilitating irresponsible or undesirable lifestyles.

    Basically, staying home, drinking cheap hooch, eating ramen and playing playstation is not a lifestyle that society should subsidize. if people want to do that, they had better figure out a way to bankroll their lifestyle in a way that is not the public dime.

    i mean we don't even have a responsibility to socially tolerate all lifestyles, let alone bankroll them from the public coffers.

    I don't think you can conflate society and the state here. Socially, you can discrimination or not tolerate or put up with whatever lifestyle you choose. There's nothing (beyond malleable social norms themselves) which dictates whether or not one can tolerate or put up with something, from a social perspective.

    But when you talk about the state, providing welfare support is for the purpose of keeping their citizens alive. Full stop. Once the money has changed hands from state to individual, it moves from state-citizen interaction to the social sphere and this is where the government then doesn't (and shouldn't) give a fuck. It's not and should not be up to the government to optimize behaviour directly (as opposed to indirectly through productivity incentives but these are incentives rather than punishments).

  • PonyPony Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Aegis wrote: »
    Irond Will wrote: »
    Pony wrote: »
    if they aren't, if they're just some kind of weirdo quasi-asthetic who is willing to live in a flophouse as long as they have a PS3? that's none of your fucking business, quite frankly

    nobody gets to dictate to me how i choose to survive

    if i choose to live in a shitty apartment in the ghetto so that i can spend that money on a fancy cellphone and new Xbox 360 games every month, that's none of your fucking business. you don't get to dictate if a person is being responsible with their money.

    that's how life works. the government doesn't get to question your financial decisions as being wise or not. that is not society's responsibility.

    the government welfare systems (including the disability system i live off of) exist to give people the money they need to survive, as determined by current costs of living and etc.

    if that person chooses to spend that money like a god damn moron, that's their problem. if they have children and are buying liquor instead of buying those children food, obviously that's a problem! and somewhere that can be interceded

    I can't really speak to the canadian ethic as regards society's responsibility towards people, and i also acknowledge that there is a distinction between disability and welfare, but in my view, it's absolutely society's right and responsibility to question whether or not they are bankrolling and/ or facilitating irresponsible or undesirable lifestyles.

    Basically, staying home, drinking cheap hooch, eating ramen and playing playstation is not a lifestyle that society should subsidize. if people want to do that, they had better figure out a way to bankroll their lifestyle in a way that is not the public dime.

    i mean we don't even have a responsibility to socially tolerate all lifestyles, let alone bankroll them from the public coffers.

    I don't think you can conflate society and the state here. Socially, you can discrimination or not tolerate or put up with whatever lifestyle you choose. There's nothing (beyond malleable social norms themselves) which dictates whether or not one can tolerate or put up with something, from a social perspective.

    But when you talk about the state, providing welfare support is for the purpose of keeping their citizens alive. Full stop. Once the money has changed hands from state to individual, it moves from state-citizen interaction to the social sphere and this is where the government then doesn't (and shouldn't) give a fuck. It's not and should not be up to the government to optimize behaviour directly (as opposed to indirectly through productivity incentives but these are incentives rather than punishments).

    I concur with this viewpoint.

  • krushkrush Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Robman wrote: »
    Nm_toronto_pay_phones_and_newspaper_boxes_toronto.jpg

    People who use payphones
    - Drug dealers
    - Hobos
    - Kidnappers

    add to that:

    people who are cheating on their spouse/s.o.

  • GungHoGungHo Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    There isn't enough Purell in the world...

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  • krushkrush Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    GungHo wrote: »
    There isn't enough Purell in the world...

    lysol... bleach... none of it is enough.

    The last time I picked up a pay phone receiver it smelled like it had been dipped in morning slob and shoved up an unwashed ass.

    I haven't forgotten my charger at home ever since.

  • TofystedethTofystedeth veni, veneri, vamoosi Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    The only pay phones I've used in the last 8 years were in an airport, so they were pretty clean.

    Before that it was the one in the hall at my highschool.

    steam_sig.png
  • sidhaethesidhaethe Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    I've had to use pay phones on occasion, to call AAA after having locked my keys (and phone, natch) in my car.

    I don't like to think about it much.

    (incidentally, having to use a gas station pay phone is about the best deterrent to locking your keys in your car in existence)

  • joshua1joshua1 Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    I am currently on welfare, or its equivalent, down here in the everysunny climes of Australia. It's not fun. I am blessed with a few niceties, such as the ability to live in a nice furnished apartment in a good neighborhood, since my parents own the place and were kind enough to reduce the rent so i could afford to live there.

    This doesn't help me feeling guilty as all hell though. Each and every day. And this leads to depression and until very recently, this leads to drinking which leads to a complete absence of my welfare. It was, and partially still is, bad.

    I just finished a Bachelor in Biotechnology, finishing with Honors, but jobs are just not apparent. Oh they are there, but for some inexplicable reason, i am not the one for them. For now, I have been working part time for a friend, and earning just a little bit, but still falling under the poverty line so the govt. kindly helps be out.

    The second annoying thing about welfare is the boredom. I am an efficient guy, so I can knock out my daily job hunt within an hour or two of waking. This is trawling all data sources, personalising cover letters, and chasing up old applications. Then I have a whole day at home alone. So I clean.... but that is boring and after a while I just sit there. For HOURS. Then i feel guilty about not doing x, then i think about drinking, and then the whole cycle of moneylessness begins again.

    I have $366 per week to live on. To pay for everything. Someone please employ me.

    EDIT: Also, the jobs that I am actually qualified for, and which I spent the last year actually doing (for free due to my hons), would net me approx. $900 a week

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