Cutting Through The Crap

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Same Sh*t, Different Day


Eric Cantor, among the more facile and shameless liars in Congress, came up with a nice gimmick recently. Called YouCut, it's a website for teabaggers and the rest of the credulous to vote, given a list provided by Mr. Cantor, on what cuts in government programs they'd like to see. Naturally, Cantor poisons the poll with prevarication. Here's how he described the first winner, prior to the vote, on his website:

The program was recently created to incentivize states to increase their welfare caseloads without requiring able-bodied adults to work, get job training, or otherwise prepare to move off of taxpayer assistance. Reforming the welfare program was one of the great achievements of the mid 1990s, saving taxpayers billions of dollars and ending the cycle of dependency on welfare. This new program, created in 2009 is a backdoor way to undo those reforms.

Well, who wouldn't want to end a travesty like that? But, to the surprise of no one in the reality-based community, his description was wildly dishonest. From the preceding link:

  • The Emergency Fund will enable states to place 186,000 unemployed individuals in subsidized jobs by the end of the summer. It’s the largest subsidized employment effort states have ever taken under TANF, the national block grant created by the 1996 welfare reform law. (More details here and here). A large share of the jobs are in the private sector.
  • The claim that the Emergency Fund “incentivizes states to increase their welfare caseloads” is simply wrong. States don’t have to increase their caseloads to qualify for money from the Emergency Fund. In fact, some states whose caseloads have sharply declined despite the recession have used money from the fund to help create subsidized jobs for low-income parents and youth or to provide one-time assistance to families in crisis (such as help paying a back rent or utility bill for a family facing eviction). In addition, states have to contribute 20 percent of the costs.
  • Individuals receiving TANF assistance funded through the Emergency Fund must meet the same stringent work requirements imposed on other TANF recipients. They have 12 weeks to find a job — an extremely difficult task in today’s labor market — after which they must meet their work requirement through other work activities, such as unpaid work. A limited number of recipients may be permitted to pursue short-term education and training.

According to the above source, even the odious Haley Barbour favors the program.

So, once again we see the disregard Republican leaders have for their followers, for the democratic process, and for the future of our country. And once again I ask teabaggers: how much of this deception will it take before you wake up? When are you going to stop letting yourselves be lied to, manipulated, and fomented into voting for the very people who first caused and still represent the problem, not the solution? You're right to be angry, worried, and to demand things change. But you've hooked up with the lowest of the lifes out there, enabling the worst offenders, and you refuse to see it. You're a bunch of co-dependents.

Because you refuse to see clearly into our problems and to reckon seriously with the difficulties of finding solutions, I'd say you and the Republican leaders, and the RWS™ who provide them with their talking points, and the "news" outlet that spreads the manure deserve each other.

Problem is, the rest of us don't, and it's us you're determined to take down with you.

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