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Is wellfare today un-American?

Wellfare... Is it un-American


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VoodooChild

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SO THE BIG QUESTION...

is it unamerican for the federal government to take my money and give it to someone else because they think they are entitled to it.


MY TWO CENTS...

America was partly founded on this idea of "the prusuit for happiness". to me it seems wellfare is more like the "gift of happiness". Is there an excuss to be on wellfare today? I dont understand how someone born and raised in Mexico that doesn't speak english can somehow cross the border illegally and find work to better their families back in Mexico but an American born and raised in this nation some how cant make ends meet. Is the American public making excusses for these people on wellfare, and by giving it to them are we just keeping them content with there current situation. I think so. It seems that a majority of people on wellfare keep repeating the same cycle generatin after generation. There are people getting wellfare that have things like cable TV, cellphones, Internet etc... I'm all about helping someone out, but if im going to give someone a helping hand its going to be on my terms. i want to decide if that person deserves my help, not the government deciding for me.
 

TurtleDude

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Income redistribution-fueled as a way for dem politicians to gain office and with it power and wealth-is going to destroy this nation
 

Zyphlin

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Well, first I'd have to ask are you legitimately and honestly wanting an answer or are you just looking for confirmation of belief? The reason I ask that is the question and the way you give it is unquestionably pitched in such a way that it displays your own personal bias and belief in the way you term it:

"is it unamerican for the federal government to take my money and give it to someone else because they think they are entitled to it."

In the most basic and literalistic reading of the words you wrote, then yes I'd view that as American. However, what you typed above is in general not the reasons legally or publicly given for why most of the entitlement programs exist in America. You may argue it's the private motivation behind them, but that is arguing what you believe to be peoples thoughts as if its fact, which is a bit more difficult especially when you're making it in a very broad sense.

Now if you ask the following which is a more honest representation of what the supposed purpose of entitlements are:

"Is it unamerican for the federal government to take my money and give it to someone else in hopes of increasing the overall well being of the country."

Then I think you'd get more to the crux of what entitlement programs purposes are. In that case I think it becomes far mroe questionable whether its "unamerican" to do such. Essentially the view on one side that no matter what "Good" you may think may come from the end, the means of taking it from someone that earned that money for himself is not justified by it. On the other side you have the view that the individual losing the money is still benefiting from it by people part of a society who overall is improved.

So to see if this is "unamerican" or not we need to look at the very principle of it...having something taken from you to help someone else which might or might not have a directly positive affect on your life. This is essentially what the government does often in a general sense of some sort. It is not "unamerican" to have taxes, there was nothing inherently "anti-all taxes" within the founding documents or the founders. They realized that government is an entity and anarchy is not preferable, and as such a government entity needs revenue of some kind. This money generated by taxes goes to variety of things like roads, the military, etc. Many of these things, especially in early America, could be very questioanble about rather or not they directly affect an individuals lives and how much it affects their lives in an indirect way.

I think Entitlements are generally an extension of this kind of thinking. As such, I think in the end, "no", I do not think Entitlement programs on the governments side of things are necessarily "UnAmerican" in principle. You could make an argument that the notion that it "helps society" isn't true, but that's an issue of opinion or disagreement on the outcome and not necessarily about intent. I do think that you could have a case in regards to some/many of them of being potentially unconstitutional, but something that is unconstitutional or someone that promotes something that's unconstitutional doesn't make someone "UnAmerican" (If it was you'd have George Bush being "UnAmerican" amongst almost all of the 2001 congress). However, in general, the notion of the government taking a citizens money to put that money into programs that's going to primarily help other citizens but overall believed to help everyone is not in and of itself an Unamerican theory.
 

American

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I'd say that welfare today has become too much American.
 

MikeVFF

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I know way too many people who "live off wellfare, its hooked up bro". This has been hevily taken advantage. If You think weed unmotivates, try giving people free govt. money and see what happens, oh wait, we already have -_-... Not legit stats but id say for every 1 person that deserves government money, 3 people dont, sadly they all "need" it now because they are addicted to govenment entitlement programs...
 

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Income redistribution-fueled as a way for dem politicians to gain office and with it power and wealth-is going to destroy this nation
This depends: By "welfare" are you including Medicare and Social Security? If so, I'll let you complain.

Otherwise, the biggest welfare programs are the subsidization of giant corporate farms, the oil industry, etc.

If - and this is a serious question - IF there is SOOOOO much distribution of the rich's money going to the poor - then how is this true?

The Exact Middle Class (i.e. those making median income) have seen their gap over the 20th Percential (those in the bottom fifth) stay steady since 1965. In other words, proportionally, they're making the same they did 45 years ago.

Now, those in the 95th percentile have seen THEIR income over those making median income (the Exact Middle Class) nearly double - from 2.6x the median to nearly 3.8x the median.
Changes in Income Inequality across the U.S. (2007-28, 9/21/2007)

From 1993 to 2007 the wealthiest 1% of Americans captured 50% of all the income growth. If you factor just from 2002 to 2007 (the "recovery"), they captured fully 2/3rds of all economic growth.
Washington's Blog

This article The return of the millionaires | Money & Company | Los Angeles Times
suggests that the wealth concentration is only further continuing, as the stock market rebounded from its lowest points, the number of millionaires - AND their share of American wealth continued to rise during 2009, even while unemployment continued to rise. So, Obama's a socialist?

So - if we're supposed redistributing so much from the rich to the poor - how is it the rich have continued concentrating their wealth, while the middle classes and the poor have - at best - remained steady for nearly 40 years?

I'm just asking.

To me the most un-American thing is the continuing inequality of opportunity. The cost of health care has outpaced inflation two-fold. The cost of college has outpaced inflation 3-fold. So how are we keeping opportunity equal if the average American family is making essentially the same amount it was making 40 years ago, when the core costs of living have risen so much more - ESPECIALLY when the cost of advancement (a college degree) has outpaced inflation by the rate it has.
 

tacomancer

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is it unamerican for the federal government to take my money and give it to someone else because they think they are entitled to it.
As far as I can tell, there is no such thing as "american." We are all individuals here and should act as such. The idea of an authentic american culture personally pisses me off because such a thing, if enforced, would restrict my freedoms and suggests a top down approach to life (people must be made to conform to some culture) instead of a bottom up (people decide for themselves and act accordingly).
 
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ronpaulvoter

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SO THE BIG QUESTION...

Is it unamerican for the federal government to take my money and give it to someone else because they think he is entitled to it?
Absolutely.

It is theft. You don't steal, either for yourself or for someone else.

In addition, it subsidizes dependence and irresponsibility and punishes responsibility and productive behavior.
 

fredmertz

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As far as I can tell, there is no such thing as "american." We are all individuals here and should act as such. The idea of an authentic american culture personally pisses me off because such a thing, if enforced, would restrict my freedoms and suggests a top down approach to life (people must be made to conform to some culture) instead of a bottom up (people decide for themselves and act accordingly).
We agree on so much sometimes. But then disagree when it's time to put our thoughts into actions.

"American Culture" is ridiculous and shouldn't be 'maintained' ever. American culture is what the culture of the citizens of the country make it. There is no culture that can be enforced.

However, I understand what people mean when they say that something is 'unAmerican' - If they mean it in the 'correct' way - they're not trying to say that a person shouldn't live their life a certain way inside their home. Or they're not saying that a person needs to have a house that has 1200 sq ft, 1 acre of land and a cell phone for each kid.

They are talking about ideas. The ideas of the constitution are American. To go against the philosophical ideas of what is 'right and wrong' as defined by the ideals of the constitution is 'unAmerican'. To go against the balance of power, to go against a federal government that has limited powers by definition, to go against somebody who is simpy trying to 'pursue' happiness - even if what they define happiness as 'getting as much money as I can!' - so long as that pursuit doesn't infringe on another person's rights. If they go against these things, they are unAmerican. American is an idea of supporting the rights of each citizen based on the constitution.

One of the most recognizable infringements on my individual rights is increased tax for welfare. This money is mine in my pursuit of happiness. And to go against that, even if you don't think this is the 'right' way to achieve happiness, is wrong because my efforts to achieve my definition of happiness do no infringe upon anybody else's rights. And so nobody has the right to stop me via taxes. That is unAmerican.
 

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SO THE BIG QUESTION...

is it unamerican for the federal government to take my money and give it to someone else because they think they are entitled to it.


MY TWO CENTS...

America was partly founded on this idea of "the prusuit for happiness". to me it seems wellfare is more like the "gift of happiness". Is there an excuss to be on wellfare today? I dont understand how someone born and raised in Mexico that doesn't speak english can somehow cross the border illegally and find work to better their families back in Mexico but an American born and raised in this nation some how cant make ends meet. Is the American public making excusses for these people on wellfare, and by giving it to them are we just keeping them content with there current situation. I think so. It seems that a majority of people on wellfare keep repeating the same cycle generatin after generation. There are people getting wellfare that have things like cable TV, cellphones, Internet etc... I'm all about helping someone out, but if im going to give someone a helping hand its going to be on my terms. i want to decide if that person deserves my help, not the government deciding for me.
There is nothing unAmerican about accepting public assistance. There's nothing unAmerican about providing public assistance. What's unAmerican is when the system itself is so corrupt that it often times subsidizes an "I-don't-want-to-do" mentality. Getting on public assistance has become the job objective of far too many Americans...whether it be Section 8 Housing, food stamps, Social Security Disability, Veterans Disability, Aid to Dependent Children, etc.

I'm proud that our country has very few beggars in the streets....that children don't go hungry...that handicapped people are able to live in dignity with marginally good lives. I'm disgusted that so many people choose to take advantage of the system and that the system has seen fit to let it ride. That's the part that's unAmerican.
 

Hoplite

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I dont see public assistance as "unAmercan" (Whatever that means). These programs are there to help people who need that extra help and I see no shame in accepting it. If you are abusing the system or taking advantage of it, that's another story entirely. Essentially, you are stealing resources from people who need them when you are unwilling to add to what you take away.
 

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Welfare isn't meant to be lived on for many years as a replacement to a traditional income. It's meant to keep people from being homeless, and giving them a chance to survive, while they get back on their feet. I'm on food stamps, and without them we would go very hungry, and I've applied for more jobs than I can remember at this point. Still haven't found work, but when I do, these food stamps will allow me to save that money instead of spend it so I can continue my education, and rise out of poverty. Just a little info for people who think it is an "entitlement" program. If someone is using welfare as a replacement to a traditional income for an extended period of time, then I think something should be done to get them back to work.

As for the OP, no it isn't un-American.
 

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Is the American public making excusses for these people on wellfare, and by giving it to them are we just keeping them content with there current situation.
Oh, but they are not content at all. Most of them are miserable and resentful. You will likely never meet people who are more unhappy than those who are not earning their own way. Look at their neighborhoods. They are some of the most miserable places on Earth.
 

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I believe in prosperity. Whether that is "American" or not, I really guess I don't care. I believe society is more prosperous when there are enough jobs so that everyone who wants one can have one. I believe that when there are not enough jobs for everyone who wants one (such as when there are 150,000,000 people who want jobs and there are only 135,000,000 jobs available), that the next best thing, for prosperity, is for the rich to be taxed and the money used to create a subsistence living for the poor, preferably on a temporary basis.

I believe that for the sake of people's dignity, whatever system of economics we adopt, all people ought to be able to find productive occupation. That is the preferred state of things. If we fail in that goal, then we must institute measures for people's survival.

I don't believe that we have the right to institute a system of property rights, currency and exchange where some people are completely left out. A free market system without some form of welfare is exactly that.
 

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I think you have to have kids to get on welfare. We are America, and we should help children with food to eat and a roof over there heads. It is just to bad that welfare is abused the way it is. It needs reformed big time.
Not sure if it's still the case, but it used to be if a single mom tried to work part time or take a temp job in hopes of getting full time, their welfare and Medicaid would be taken away. They were better off just staying in the system. I think those who at least try should be rewarded for their efforts and maybe eventually they could make it on their own.
 

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SO THE BIG QUESTION...

is it unamerican for the federal government to take my money and give it to someone else because they think they are entitled to it.


MY TWO CENTS...

America was partly founded on this idea of "the prusuit for happiness". to me it seems wellfare is more like the "gift of happiness". Is there an excuss to be on wellfare today? I dont understand how someone born and raised in Mexico that doesn't speak english can somehow cross the border illegally and find work to better their families back in Mexico but an American born and raised in this nation some how cant make ends meet. Is the American public making excusses for these people on wellfare, and by giving it to them are we just keeping them content with there current situation. I think so. It seems that a majority of people on wellfare keep repeating the same cycle generatin after generation. There are people getting wellfare that have things like cable TV, cellphones, Internet etc... I'm all about helping someone out, but if im going to give someone a helping hand its going to be on my terms. i want to decide if that person deserves my help, not the government deciding for me.
No, welfare as a temporary help and means of support when life is rough and goes sour is not "un-American" - that embodies America, actually.

But abusing it or deciding to always *need* it is un-American because another aspect of Americanism is to be able to live a solid and steady life on your own - hence us being "the land of opportunity"
 

peepnklown

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It depends on what you think it means to be American.
If being American is about individual liberty then welfare is un-American.
 

Hoplite

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People need to explain what exactly "unAmerican" means
 

d0gbreath

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People need to explain what exactly "unAmerican" means
Throughout most of my formative years, it was repeated to me that it is unAmerican to be a communist. I believe that I've also heard that unAmericanism can come in the forms of being a Hippie, or a war protester. Oh yeah, and "a joint is a bad place to be". Thanks Merle.
 

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People need to explain what exactly "unAmerican" means
It's a different definition for everyone, really it means nothing, since there is no consensus of what is "unAmerican". One could argue the Constitution is the basis of what is American, but when we can argue about what that even means its not a good basis of what is or isn't "American".
 
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American

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As far as I can tell, there is no such thing as "american." We are all individuals here and should act as such. The idea of an authentic american culture personally pisses me off because such a thing, if enforced, would restrict my freedoms and suggests a top down approach to life (people must be made to conform to some culture) instead of a bottom up (people decide for themselves and act accordingly).
Off topic, but if there is no American culture, then there is no such thing as culture.
 

Aunt Spiker

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Off topic, but if there is no American culture, then there is no such thing as culture.
Well what is 'American Culture' then?

I see regional and social cultures more than an overall "American" thing that most people have in common or work to uphold and further.
 

fredmertz

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Off topic, but if there is no American culture, then there is no such thing as culture.
I believe it was implied to mean: static American culture in which we must adhere. American culture, is by definition, a melting pot of different and everchanging beliefs. Which means that it is necessary to accept a differing belief. So to say that certain things, such as gay marriage, are not allowed because it's against the culture that is America is just dumb... that culture is meant to be constantly in flux and permissive.
 

MKULTRABOY

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My two cents: If people are complaining about the unemployment rate, yet they oppose assistance to the unemployed... they need their head checked.
/no relation. :)
 
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