I can fix all the problems with one change

What problems?  Unemployment, juvenile delinquency, crime, spousal abuse, poverty, illegal immigration, divorce, illiteracy, childbirth out of wedlock, and obesity.

“All” that has to be done is to foster personal responsibility — in all aspects of our lives. How to do this?

Get people to work — MAKE them work and earn their way. Truly reform our welfare system and require every able-bodied person to work or be performing public service of some sort (a’la WPA). In the process, the people with their hands out will come to have a feeling of a stake in the community.  And in the reform we must take into account the fraudulent notion of “earned income credits” whereby people get a tax “refund” of taxes they did not even pay. If deserving citizens need a hand up, then fine.  But don’t disguise it as a “refund.”  It’s welfare, pure and simple. Change all of that and people now undeservedly on welfarre will rise to the occasion and begin to become responsible for themselves and their families. Hopefully.

At every step along that path we must make certain that folks who truly need and deserve help get it. The problem is that our public benefit systems have failed to discriminate between those in need and those who are committing fraud. We’ve reached the point where the number of people who are takers are about to exceed the number of givers.

For many, and you hear this repeatedly, the incentive to work does not exist.

Then there is the dichotomy of how our “entitlement” system (of which welfare is but a part) draws illegal immigrants to this country, but for the most part, they work!

So here’s how the “fix” works:  Everyone is working, they’re too tired at night to commit crime and no longer have a need to; they can afford to get married and raise a traditional family; the financial pressures that foster many divorces are lessened; they eat better and are more active thus lessening obesity; people seek better education because now they need it; and the entitlement magnet that draws people across our borders illegally is disengaged.

OK, of course I’m stretching the point somewhat, but the fundamental argument is sound:  engender, and require, personal responsibility and much of our societal pathology takes care of itself.

And the practical result is that the gut-wrenching, crippling national debt is lessened because we’re no longer spending so much money on foolishness.  Bottom line: a hand UP betters the human condition and is cheaper than the hand OUT.

Advertisements

About Gil Jones

CPA/Attorney/Judge by training and trade. Hobby nut at heart with BMW m/c, computers, ham radio, kayak fishing, photography, hiking and, starting in 2010 some semi-serious running and bicycling (road and mountain bikes). Retired after 16 years on a Texas District Court bench and since 2013 have been mediating cases. I am a Credentialed Distinguished mediator (TMCA).
This entry was posted in serious. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to I can fix all the problems with one change

  1. donbynum says:

    You said… ” At every step along that path we must make certain that folks who truly need and deserve help get it. The problem is that our public benefit systems have failed to discriminate between those in need and those who are committing fraud ”

    Gil… the help people get should be only in the most extreme circumstances via government. Massive natural disasters would be such an example. Local government should be engaged more often than state government which should be engaged more often than federal government. The federal government has moved to co-opt the role of individual and community charity in our culture, as well as in our local and state governmental processes. There is every incentive for federal government bureaucracies to make themselves “more valuable” by extending the circle of dependency they generate. There are few incentives to restrain the growth, fraudulent or otherwise, of that circle. I do believe that we all have a responsibility to help our fellow travellers, but I think that responsibility is personal, sometimes through community (church, March of Dimes, Blue Santa, Red Cross, … or other voluntary charitable organization) activity, but only rarely through the inevitably blunt instrument of any level of government. The fraud is simply inevitable when the flow of current and future (as in deficit spending) taxpayer assets becomes as huge as it has today.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s