No more lips service GOP/ OP ED
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23-08-2017, 01:15 PM
RE: No more lips service GOP/ OP ED
(23-08-2017 12:53 PM)Birdguy1979 Wrote:  
(23-08-2017 11:45 AM)Grasshopper Wrote:  My thoughts are pretty much the same as yours. Requiring welfare applicants to seek work (and to accept it when offered) would be a start; we could also raise the minimum wage (although I'm not convinced that this would do anything but cause inflation) and/or decrease welfare payments. But I would blame the system rather than those taking advantage of it. If I could make more money (or even as much money) by not working than I could by working, I'd be strongly tempted to say "Sign me up!" Taking advantage of that system strikes me as more smart than lazy. If we want people to work, we have to give them an incentive to work.

I don't have any solution to the loss of high-paying low-skilled jobs. That ship has sailed, and it ain't coming back. Those people are either going to have to acquire skills (which may not be realistic for some of them), or we as a society are going to have to eat the cost of supporting them. Manufacturers aren't going to pay someone big bucks to do a job that a robot can do more efficiently for half the cost, and we can't expect them to.

Then we should be offering help/welfare to people that work yet get low pay. If they can show a paystub below the poverty line (which should be increased significantly) they should get help. Whether we just supplement their income or just waive their income tax, that would be a start. Welfare is supposed to be temporary and far too many are making a career out of it.


That was the principle of the "Wisconsin Works" welfare reforms governor Thompson enacted in my state. The federal welfare reform of the late 90s was based in part on Wisconsin's experience. Wisconsin phased out benefits rather than cutting people off at a low threshold. Wisconsin's administration of welfare programs still have this built into the programs. Someone making minimum wage at full time employment is still going to be eligible for the food assistance program, for instance. We recognized that cutting people off entirely from benefits is counterproductive since it encourages people to not work. However the amounts paid out and the phaseouts need to be constantly updated in order to remain effective.

Liberals toss out the idea of a "basic level of income". I'd prefer a system like Wisconsin's with work requirements and less aggressive phase outs so we do not create perverse incentives that discourse people from working. I think that is going to be more effective than a higher minimum wage. Some liberals criticize this sort of plan as a form of "corporate welfare" (government subsidy of Walmart employees is the usual slogan we hear). But the alternative is a higher minimum wage and fewer job opportunities as the Walmarts of the world accelerate automation in response.
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