The Beggar Bureaucracy

                Why the government maintains a poverty class

                What comes to mind when I use the word “beggar,” a dirty man in a doorway with his hand out, a man with a cardboard sign at the freeway exit. We all have mental images evoked by certain words, “beggar” for sure, other derogatory terms like “hooker” is another, “faggot” also another.

                But there are other beggars among us less visible. The person at the checkout stand in front of you using an Oregon Trail card. Could they be your co-worker, your neighbor, perhaps yourself? That person had to sign papers asking the state for money for food. Are they beggars? Sure they are. How about a person living in HUD housing. They had to sign papers asking for help to put a roof over their head. Are they beggars? Sure they are. You lost your job and now you are filing for unemployment. Are you begging for money? Sure you are. Are you signed up for free or sliding scale medical help? Begging again for sure!

                Who is it that allows and maintains this poverty class? Who is it that signs social security checks, disability checks or otherwise? It is the government!! A disabled lady friend of mine received a whopping $735.00 a month in a town where you can't rent a tent for $500.00 a month.

                Then as a disabled SS recipient, they tied her in with a bureaucracy that provided her medical coverage. Then another bureaucracy that provided food assistance. And another bureaucracy that provided medically necessary transportation.

                The solution appears simple. Make the checks out for say $2,500. Then recipients could pay market rent, so scratch housing assistance. They could pay their own medical insurance, so scratch medical assistance. They could buy their own groceries, so scratch the food assistance bureaucracy. They might be able to buy a car and provide some of their own transportation. Scratch the transportation bureaucracy.

                So simple! Yet the reason the government does not allow change is also simple.

                Millions of people nationwide are employed by the food bureaucracy, the housing bureaucracy, the medical bureaucracy, the social services bureaucracy etc, etc, etc. Throwing the bureaucracies out of work by paying beneficiaries a livable wage would create catastrophic unemployment throwing the economy into disaster. The long and short of it is if you receive assistance from any government bureaucracy because you do not have sufficient resources of your own, you are a beggar and the government wants it that way. Maintaining the poverty class has become an industry of necessity.

                There are other industries of necessity. Suppliers of military hardware for instance. What would happen to the economy if all the folks that make Humvee s, machine guns, bullets and bombs were no longer needed and were forced into unemployment insurance. Disaster for the economy.

                Politicians talk about financial institutions that are just “too big” to fail, corporations that are just “too big” to fail. Do you know what is too big to fail? Social Security is too big to fail. Social Security disability is too big , Medicare, veterans checks etc are too big to fail.

                Like it or not we are married to these so called entitlements and politicians may not interfere. If a balanced budget means 50 million seniors don't get their checks, then bus loads of seniors will be shovelling manure on politicians desks as an indication of how they think politicians are doing, all the while telling politicians, “Now that you have ended my paychecks, let's see what we can do to end yours. Can you say “recall” boys and girls?”


By Don DuPay