Georgia’s New Immigration Law Leading To Crops Rotting In Farmers’ Fields
A new Georgia immigration law is causing serious problems for Georgia's farmers.
During the last legislative session, Georgia adopted a harsh new immigration law modeled on the law passed last year by Arizona. Now, it seems they’re getting a little lesson in the law of unintended consequences:
After enacting House Bill 87, a law designed to drive illegal immigrants out of Georgia, state officials appear shocked to discover that HB 87 is, well, driving a lot of illegal immigrants out of Georgia.
It might be funny if it wasn’t so sad.
Thanks to the resulting labor shortage, Georgia farmers have been forced to leave millions of dollars’ worth of blueberries, onions, melons and other crops unharvested and rotting in the fields. It has also put state officials into something of a panic at the damage they’ve done to Georgia’s largest industry.
Barely a month ago, you might recall, Gov. Nathan Deal welcomed the TV cameras into his office as he proudly signed HB 87 into law. Two weeks later, with farmers howling, a scrambling Deal ordered a hasty investigation into the impact of the law he had just signed, as if all this had come as quite a surprise to him.
The results of that investigation have now been released. According to survey of 230 Georgia farmers conducted by Agriculture Commissioner Gary Black, farmers expect to need more than 11,000 workers at some point over the rest of the season, a number that probably underestimates the real need, since not every farmer in the state responded to the survey.
In response, Deal proposes that farmers try to hire the 2,000 unemployed criminal probationers estimated to live in southwest Georgia. Somehow, I suspect that would not be a partnership made in heaven for either party.
Adam Ozimek, who’s guest blogging for Megan McArdle this week, explains the rather elementary economics behind what’s happening:
It goes like this. If you’re not going to let illegal immigrants do the jobs they are currently being hired to do, then farmers will have to raise wages to replace them. Since farmers are taking a risk in hiring immigrant workers, you can bet they were getting a significant deal on wage costs relative to “market wages”. I put market wages here in quotations, because it’s quite possible that the wages required to get workers to do the job are so high that it’s no longer profitable for farmers to plant the crops in the first place.
All of this is to say if you’re going to stop illegal immigrants from doing a job you should be prepared for the job, and perhaps even the business itself, to go away. You may think this is worth it, but you should at least be acknowledging the risks and weigh them against what, if anything, you think is being gained.
Instead, it appears rather obvious that Georgia legislators didn’t even bother to consult with farmers about what the consequences of cracking down on the very community that picks their crops might possible be, or develop a plan to deal with a sudden loss of an important source of labor. Governor Deal’s idea to use probationers to pick the crops is just inherently silly because there’s no incentive for those probationers to do their job as efficiently as the migrant workers did, and because there’s little possibility that the farmers will trust them on their property. Instead, the Georgia legislature was caught up in the same anti-immigrant zeal that pushed a similar law through in Arizona last year.
The anti-immigration crowd likes to say that illegal immigrants are taking jobs that Americans would otherwise do. The fact that Georgia farmers aren’t able to replace their migrant workers would seem to be evidence that this is clearly not the case. After all, would any American do a job like this:
According to the survey, more than 6,300 of the unclaimed jobs pay an hourly wage of just $7.25 to $8.99, or an average of roughly $8 an hour. Over a 40-hour work week in the South Georgia sun, that’s $320 a week, before taxes, although most workers probably put in considerably longer hours. Another 3,200 jobs pay $9 to $11 an hour. And while our agriculture commissioner has been quoted as saying Georgia farms provide “$12, $13, $14, $16, $18-an-hour jobs,” the survey reported just 169 openings out of more than 11,000 that pay $16 or more.
In addition, few of the jobs include benefits — only 7.7 percent offer health insurance, and barely a third are even covered by workers compensation. And the truth is that even if all 2,000 probationers in the region agreed to work at those rates and stuck it out — a highly unlikely event, to put it mildly — it wouldn’t fix the problem.
It’s hard to envision a way out of this. Georgia farmers could try to solve the manpower shortage by offering higher wages, but that would create an entirely different set of problems. If they raise wages by a third to a half, which is probably what it would take, they would drive up their operating costs and put themselves at a severe price disadvantage against competitors in states without such tough immigration laws. That’s one of the major disadvantages of trying to implement immigration reform state by state, rather than all at once.
The pain this is causing is real. People are going to lose their crops, and in some cases their farms. The small-town businesses that supply those farms with goods and services are going to suffer as well. For economically embattled rural Georgia, this could be a major blow.
And all because Republicans in Atlanta wanted to cause harm to those darn immigrants. In the process, they’ve dealt a serious blow to one of the biggest industries in their state.
There’s a court challenge to the law pending right now and it’s possible that the Court will issue a stay on enforcement of the law. If that happens, then maybe some of the migrant workers will come back with the fear of arrest lifted. Even if they do, though, it may be too late for some farmers. Food will rot in fields, prices will go up in the grocery store, and all because of a stupid law that’s probably unconstitutional anyway. How utterly insane.
I will keep posting this because the irony is delicious: The sturgeon, mussels, and oystermen of Florida would like to thank the bigoted voters of Georgia for guaranteeing that flows in the Apalachicola River will be safeguarded for the near future, due to short-sighted destruction of the water-intensive agriculture in your state. Perhaps next you can set Atlanta a-blaze for us.
Yeah how dare they enforce federal and state law, next thing you know they’ll decide to have us enforce the gun and drug laws.
The jobs exist and unemployment is high, To what degree have these jobs been promoted to those seeking work, to those who have exhausted unemployment benefits, to those in other states who are dying for a job, ANY job.
I’ve never understood why we are so happy to decide not to enforce one law and that’s ok but we will scream bloody murder if someone breaks anohter
Datechguy: They already did try to get people out there, even probationers. Basically they all left early and told the farmer the work was too hard; http://www.ajc.com/news/nation-world/georgia-puts-probationers-to-984075.html
Perhaps we can get some political prisoners from West-Africa to come here and pick our food. It’s the American way!
So, Georgia’s farmers have been exploiting illegal aliens to decrease the price of labor, and now that they cannot, they whine and complain and we are supposed to feel bad for them?
The choices for the farm-owners are simple:
– Increase wages
– Let crops rot in fields
Several years ago my wife and I were part of a farm co-op and we decided to volunteer to help pick one Sunday just for fun. It was some of the toughest physical labor I’ve ever engaged in, made more so by the fact that it was a Sunday in July. I can’t see unemployed office workers eager to spent their summer picking crops.
Also, it’s worth mentioning that crops need to be picked when they’re ready to be picked. Farmers can’t afford to wait for people to come to them and apply for a job when they’re not even sure they’ll keep up with it. Migrant workers exist because there’s a market for them. They don’t stay in one place very long (hence the migrant part) because once they’re done picking in one place, they move on to another. That’s why its the kind of job that attracts undocumented immigrants, because most of them don’t have fixed addresses to begin with so the idea of spending the summer traveling the country doesn’t bother them as much as it would you and me.
Ever since the Bush 43 Administration, attempts have been made to legalize these market workers by at least making it legal for them to work during the picking season. It’s only Republican intransigence on the issue of immigration — which isn’t nearly as simple as the rhetoric makes it out to be — that has prevented that from happening.
Gustopher: Hey, I agree, I say crush the entire economy of Georgia. Burn the entire place to the ground and sow the ashes with salt. But, the voters of Georgia would probably not go along with our prescription. So, with that in mind, I really look forward to the ground-game for GOP/Tea-partiers in 2012: “We know that we killed your multi-generational farm, but at least there won’t be no ni…er, Urban Thug in the White House”. It should be titillating to say the least.
A different angle on the story: “Minimum Wage Laws, Payroll Taxes Leading To Crops Rotting In Farmers’ Fields.”
If the farmers could legally pay their workers day-labor cash wages, I’d guess they could probably find enough labor and make the numbers work out, even if they had to bus unemployed people in from local towns and cities.
An aspect of this that I haven’t seen explored elsewhere is that this would seem to me to suggest a change in influence in the state legislature from rural and agricultural interests to urban and suburban ones. Over the last ten years the Atlanta metro area has increased in population by nearly 40%–its population constitutes more than half of the entire state’s.
This. This is what goes beyond sad stupidity & rank incompetence and traipses straight into open negligence. It adds fuel to the growing realization that Republicans are actively sabotaging the US economy, because let’s face it – that would be the least pathetic explanation for things like this…
It ain’t rocket science y’know. Some laws are downright stupid and counterproductive – everyone knows it, and deals with it by basically ignoring the law. You can’t change the law, because of the existence of “the stupid party” who have enough clout to make the political cost too high. So they “win” by keeping the law on the books, and the rest of society wins by ignoring the law.
We scream bloody murder when people break sensible laws.
This actually may work in the urban-dwellers benefit, since before next year they will have to find a way to reduce water-use state-wide. If Atlanta-Metro can see a lot of savings from reduced AG-consumption, they may not need to move the border north, after all.
But, the voters of Georgia would probably not go along with our prescription
If the Democrats came out with a platform of ‘not kicking puppies’, the GOP would lead a puppy-stomping parade down main street and label the SPCA a terrorist organization. You probably think I’m exaggerating…
I’m sure that has something to do with it.. At the very least it makes it harder for representatives from farming districts to influence legislation
@Gustopher – the problem with the following formula is that you’re missing a key peice:
The thing is that there’s the whole problem of having to sell what’s picked — and that means bringing it at a price that is acceptable to a market that demands low prices.
One of the most concise articles about the dangers of low prices is the Fast Company classic:
The Walmart You Don’t Know – http://www.fastcompany.com/magazine/77/walmart.html
It’s the story of what happens when the retailer no longer allows it’s suppliers to pass certain costs onto the consumer. On its face it sounds like a good thing, but it’s also a key component of forcing companies to drive down costs through wage reduction (specially when they are publicly held).
In other words:
1.) raise prices, which means that people will get all of their food from out-of-state sources, which means the Georgian agricultural market collapses
2.) the Georgian agricultural market collapses
Of course, then the workers would have to pray that the retailers keep those food costs as low as possible so they could afford the produce that they are picking, which in turn ensures that the wages will never increase.
Thank god for credit.
You know, I don’t hear all this whining when say the EPA forces coal plants to shut down due to new regulations or say, they ban drilling offshore or say, harbor workers are required to have a background check.
Yes, the timing is bad. They should have phased in the law to it didn’t take full effect until after this harvest season so the farmers could react. But then, it isn’t like the law doesn’t have a long history going through the legislature. Yes, the farmers had a problem, they could hardly call up the legislature or governor and tell them that they were using illegal labor. On the upside, this might spur support for the guest worker program.
But change sucks and getting legal can be costly, just ask the chemical companies or the power plant operators or the truckers. Everything the government does imposes a higher cost on someone, is that a reason not to enact laws? Say like Obamacare or cap’n trade or regulations like controlling CO2 as a pollutant, or facilitating rapid unionization?
You want to hear whining and crying stop by some government agency or university when they find out they have to meet the laws they impose or protest for. “But I don’t have the money to train students to use PPS” “But we don’t have time to get an export license.” Cry me a river.
Are the farms non-viable without illegal labor, period, or is it simply the suddenness of the law that’s harming them?
If it’s the former, then we have a problem that’s not going to be resolved aside from ignoring the issue, granting a ton of guest worker passes, or letting the agro-industry die. If it’s the latter, then you could phase in the restriction (such as a 4-5 year warning period) so that farmers have time to develop a less labor-intensive means of harvesting their crops.
Not sure that would have helped at all.
If you were a Hispanic worker, legal or illegal, would you go anywhere near Georgia after this law passed?
I guess that invisible hand, the so-called republicans are obsessed with, doesn’t pick fruit.
Republicans are actually outsourcing agriculture overseas. Brilliant.
Ponce…exactly…racism costs $$$$.
More like Republicans cost dollars.
These dumb cracker Republican governors are reminding America why we should neveragain put the Republicans in charge of anything…ever.
Obviously, they were taking little risk because there was litle enforcement until now. That’s the reason for the wide discrepancy and swing. The operating assumption is no enforcement and that they can’t compete with others in the business because the government won’t guarantee a fair playing field.
Ponce…is that redundant?
JKB makes a good point about comparing this w/ environmental enforcement. Either you think the regulation is good or not, all regulations have costs. But I would emphasize that non-enforcement of regulations means that for a business to stay competitive, it must adapt. This has been a key concern of environmental regulation for the last 10-15 yrs.
(Not all agriculture businesses will agree to adapt to illegal immigration as a matter of principle, but they will have to adjust elsewhere. I think it would be interesting if someone got behind a verifiable system that assured consumers at the grocery store that the product was based on zero percentage illegal labor)
JKB: You can’t compare EPA regulations to this law for a number of reasons but one of the most important: The EPA is a federal agency, it’s power applies to all states so all are in the same boat.
Georgia has passed a law that applies only to Georgia’s farms and makes them less competitive than others. They deserve what they get.
Georgia passed a law designed to help nobody. Closing down a coal plant removes a source of pollution which has tremendous health costs associated with it. One law is crafted for positive purposes, the other is to inflict damage on migrant workers just because it’s fun. There is no equivalency.
But Ben, clearly this law was passed to protect the millions of Georgians who desperately want to pick fruit but lose their jobs to illegal immigrants. That’s why they’re all flooding the fields right now…
You’re absolutely right, wr. I don’t know what I was thinking.
I cannot dump garbage on the Koch Bros front lawn. Environmental laws should prevent the Koch Bros from dumping garbage in the air I breathe or the water I drink. Environmental laws protect me from the Koch Bros, who I am unable to protect myself from.
Who or what does the GA law protect?
There’s a paragraph in Third Eye’s article that pretty much says everything you need to know about this situation:
White Georgians think they are the naturally superior race, and if that isn’t reflected in reality, obviously the minorities must be cheating somehow.
My experience is that compared to migrant workers, the majority of Americans are pretty damned lazy.
“Everything the government does imposes a higher cost on someone”
Negative externalities. Sometimes government is just making people pay the true cost for their product. I could run a nuclear reactor very cheaply if you let me dump the waste anywhere I want.
My father had a small (150 Acre) orange orchard in central California, and I worked it a couple of summers.
As Doug said, it’s back-breaking work, hard, hot and relentless. And I just drove the tractor and humped baskets into trailers – I wasn’t good enough to pick fruit.
I was too slow, too soft – at 18 and an on a university athletic scholarship.
The migrants working there were some of the toughest and some of the kindest people I’ve ever met, (thought lots were tough and mean, too).
But all were tough as nails, even the women.
The condescending, callous know-it-alls on the comment thread from the article show exactly why we are in the place we are: no responsibility, passing the buck and blaming the other – no matter who that is.
No understanding or willingness to try to figure the problem out.
People willfully telling their own neighbors: piss off if you can’t replace the workers – it’s all YOUR fault, I don’t care if your farm fails.
Others blaming Welfare EBT users (read: Blacks) for not being strong enough.
Still others blaming Damn “libs” and their minimum wage laws – as if paying less were the answer.
Very, very few taking the time to try to figure out how or what to do.
Just blame and invective.
Migrant workers? Get them out.
Problems arising from that? Too bad, go out of business.
Higher prices resulting from the short sited actions of a few reactionary xenophobes? Obama’s fault.
It’s Nihilism, from a disaffected few that bitch the loudest and who are pandered to the most.
DAMMIT! What the hell is Georgia going to do without its cheap labor to exploit? This is 1865 all over again, when those damned Yankees did the same damned thing! We NEED them dark-skinned people out in the field, minimum wage and other labor laws be damned! And we need the Democrats to make certain they don’t get deprived of their servants out working the fields!
(Who seriously needs to expand on this riff for a full posting at Wizbang)
Ahh…so migrant workers are the same thing as slaves…well, I guess that makes sense, in that many people in the 1800s wanted to deport blacks to Africa while now I’m sure there are plenty of people who want to deport migrant workers to Mexico and Central America…
The question is, what is the economy of Georgia going to look like after this move seriously undercuts its agricultural sector? I wonder if the sympathy you seem to have for migrant workers extends to laborers in, say, China…
That´s more complicated. I live in Brazil, I NEVER saw snow in my life(You have to travel outside the country to see it). There is no desert in the whole country, in most of the country it rains every month of the year.
You don´t compete with THAT by paying 30 dollars per hour.
Mr. Mataconis, do you think the Republican intransigence on immigration sprung up out of thin air or did it perhaps develop and fester under their political opponents’ desire to remove all obstructions to illegal immigration?
And I think that perhaps you may be mistaken in claiming this is an unintended consequence, though that’s admittedly a much longer game than politicians in either party typically play.
As Doubter and others point out, part of the obnoxious arrogance of this is the assumption that if it’s a job done by Mexicans it must not require skill or stamina. A lot of the low-status, backbreaking work in this country requires a hell of a lot of skill.
It’s all quite reminiscent of the tail end of the Civil War when some southerners considered “allowing” slaves to fight for the CSA. (Evidently irony had not yet been invented.) And southerners stuck by their racism, all the way down to defeat.
The lunacy of this law, the self-destructiveness, is astounding. As is the blind idiocy of those defending it. As bad as the economy is, as much as we have sent jobs overseas, Republicans want to export more jobs and kill more businesses, for no reason other than a desire to pander to the racism of their partisans.
Duh. It protects Georgians from wildfires.
It’s not that the Georgian farm owners cannot find motivated, hard-working Americans to do this work, it’s that they cannot do so for the amount they want to pay.
The use of illegal immigrants is just to keep costs down — if you have some dirt poor people who don’t have any legal rights, they’re easy to exploit. And, legal residents have to compete for fewer legally-compliant jobs, so their wages are depressed too.
The South has always depended on immorally cheap labor. This goes all the way back to slavery. Do you know who slavery hurt most? The slaves, of course. But right after that was the poor white workers who had to compete with free.
So too bad, Georgian farm owners! Suffer the consequences of your actions, your workers have just gone Galt!
What part of “illegal” are you not getting? Hey, doesn’t a lawyer take some kind of oath to uphold the law?
If you think this is “going Galt” I think you completely missed the point of Atlas Shrugged.
I agree with all your facts. And yet, the net result will be that we buy more of our food overseas and more American businesses will go under. If we double the cost of picking fruit — and God only knows what it would take to get an American to live that life, it could be triple — the result is inevitable.
And if there’s one thing I associate with Black Beard, it’s fidelity to the law.
Everyone who thinks migrant workers are taking American jobs should go and watch them in the field for six or eight hours — if you can manage just to stand there in the heat for that long — and ask yourself how much you’d have to be paid to take the job.
Again, part of the mistake here is the idea that the farmers are keeping costs down to make a profit. That’s why the article on Walmart is so important as a part of this. Farmers have very little control over prices. Prices — except in extreme cases of extensive damage to crops — are set by the food sellers, not the farmers. The need for low cost, illegal labor is driven as much by what Walmart and other retailers are willing to pay for food as anything else.
As with the issue of federal debt, you can’t start to deal with issues of food price and fair wage until one is willing to tackle all parts of the issue. Otherwise it’s simply tweaking one lever and typically hurting all that are involved.
What was it The Boehner said when confronted with the fact that Draconian GOP-bagger budget cuts would result in the loss of hundreds of thousands of jobs? ?
Did he say, “So be it” ? ?
Maybe he should tell the farmers in Georgia [and other such foolhardy states] the same .. ..
Hmm. Slaves were brought here in chains. Many migrant workers risk their lives to get here.
Yep. It’s pretty much the same thing.
BTW, living in Central and Western NY, I’ve gotten to know a number of farmers — many who use migrant labor — I am hard pressed to think of any of them who are getting rich by paying low wages. Most are doing their best to ensure that they can keep farming.
Around here, the only rich “farmers” are the ones who sold their fields to real estate developers during the 80’s/90’s housing boom.
Slaves were far from free.
Wonder if Georgia’s Republicans are going to request a federal bailout for the mess they’ve caused?
I’ll just note that this was one of the 2 or 3 issues where I was with GWB.
(I’m with Doubter and michael, not only is this really hard work, it’s not something you just pick up. You need to train for it, in both skills and physical conditioning.
I always think it’s funny, as I go off to train for my Whitney hike, that my gardener could just go do it. What he does every day is a lot harder than my “training.”)
Image what is going to happen when the government imposes Medicare for all and massively lowers health care reimbursements. Progressives are planning on all of those heathcare workers still showing up to work for much lower pay and poorer working conditions.
Medicare for all puts health care providers in exactly the same economic situation as those farmers in Georgia. Yet laying off massive numbers of insurance and health care workers is seen as a positive to progressives.
If the government weren’t paying half the country to sit at home on their butts all day, then there would be no problem finding workers. Why would any9one work when they get free money?
However, it’s not free money. We could have run our air conditioner this summer if we didn’t have to pay enough taxes to support ALL the lazy people in the U.S. We could eat out, we could take our kids on vacation, which we haven’t done in a decade, we could maybe buy a new mini van, which we also haven’t done in a decade.
I’m really angry that there are jobs people could do, but they have no incentive because I’m being forced to support every single woman who uses her kids as meal tickets, every kid with attention deficit disorder (in other words, the short attention span of a typical kid) every drug dealer and crack ho who keep their income off books so they can get my money too.
Stop the free money (MY MONEY) and you’ll have plenty of workers.
No taxation without REAL representation!
superdestroyer, the european welfare states use work visas. They don’t hang themselves on full benefits for low paying jobs. That is not perfect either, but it certainly allows a flexibility that an “immigration only” policy does not.
You are right that if farmers were forced to attract workers by wage and benefits, then our food would be much more expensive … wait, except we can still import food from Chile or even China.
The old globalization consequence.
“…What part of “illegal” are you not getting? Hey, doesn’t a lawyer take some kind of oath to uphold the law…”
I’ll believe William Teach is really concerned about the rule of law when he pushes for members of the Bush Administration to be tried for war crimes, and Wall St. executives tried for fraud.
And Meg’s idea that putting our unemployed to work in the fields is going to take us back to the good ol’ days of her imagination is just so much fantasy based on unicorns and leprechauns.
Those of us who draw Unemployment Insurance Benefits are aware that it is not “free” money.
You do know that to qualify for UIB a recipient has to WORK A JOB whose employer pays into the system.
The extension of benefits beyond an initial 6 month claim is funded by the Federal Govt.
Since I have been working for the better part of 50 years and paying Federal Income Tax all that time I am glad I’m getting some of MY MONEY back when I need it.
If you do not like this system you are free to lobby to change the laws that created it.
@Meg, if they are such great jobs, why aren’t you doing them, I mean you need all these new things, like minivans and vacations, take your frumpy-ass down there and get what you need. I am sure all that water-weight you have kept on since the last troglodyte you dropped from your cooch could be dealt with in only a couple weeks doing Paco and the Crack-Ho’s god-mandated work.
Someone is missing an excellent opportunity — “pick your own” produce! Charge the uppies and other urban foodies a price per “basket” to come on out and pick your own veggies. No fuels and operator costs to use machinery, no paying a middle-man to haul to markets, and even a “depressed” price on the farm is still cheaper than “Whole Foods” or “Publix” markets prices. And it is also “ready cash” for the farmer. The farmer might just make enough to cover this year’s plantings, and a start for next year.
I’m in Maryland, have family in Atlanta, planning on an extended visit to daughter once the baby is born in August (I know it’s hot) but I am also willing to don gloves and coveralls to pick veggies to can too! Sounds like a possible deal, if you can get the city dwellers down for a couple hours in the early morn.
Sandra, don’t forget to promote this idea as “Green, Natural, Organic and Environmentally Friendly!”
The WOO crowd will descend on the crops like a plague of locusts!
@Sandra, there’s been a ton of the “pick your own” movement popping up in a lot of these places. I do wonder if it’s possible — with the larger crop outlays — to make up the difference there. But it is a good idea — provided you’re close enough to an urban area.
BTW — and it’s a lot more than the yuppies who are participating.
I wonder how many people actually believe that the government pays half the country to sit at home on their butts all day? I’m sure many who believe that also think that half of all workers pay no taxes…
@Sandra and Matt,
Most of these farms are in SW Georgia. Who are you going to convince to drive there? People from Columbus/Eufala? Panama City? Mobile? You could feasibly ship it, but then you run into problems with river access and less than 7′ channels. Rock to the left of me, hard places to the right, and here I am, stuck in the middle with you…
How nice y’all are! You must be democrats, or I hit a nerve..:)
I wasn’t talking so much about the unemployed, I was talking about the permanent welfare class that never works and never has. If the government wasn’t supporting them (wait, I’M supporting them!) then they would automatically be filling these jobs. As it is, they are now helpless and unable to support themselves, and $1000 a paycheck of my money is going to buying their potato chips and colas and toward paying their rent. If the government had left them alone and let them support themselves all along, then the desire to provide for their children, or at least themselves, would have them out there earning a paycheck, and I could spend MY money on MY kids, as is the natural order of things.
So I can sit on my couch all I want, I bought it. I have a clear conscience. I can have as many kids as I want, since we’re paying for them and have never asked anyone for anything for them, as it should be,
I don’t think it’s too much to ask, that the government not take my money at the end of a gun and give it to people who expect to be taken care of and supported all their lives. If they weren’t doing that the these jobs would have been filled immediately.
The point is not Wal-Mart. With immigrants willing to work for the minimum wage American Farmers find hard time competing with food coming from the Developing World, and food in the US is already pretty expensive compared to other countries.
@Meg, it must be so tough for you paying every single dollar of your kids education, or the roads you use to get your ankle-biters back and forth to fat-camp. Or those interwebs you use paid for and subsidized through taxes from other states (you leech!). It must be so difficult for you with all these crack-hos taking your skrilla. Oh, wait you’re no better than those crack-hos. Must suck to live you life.
Bless your hearts, you democrats live with such hostility and anger eating you up inside. I feel so bad for y’all. It’s yet another good reason why y’all shouldn’t be running things, though, not until you’re old enough to understand and the void currently filled with anger and frustration has been filled by the normal machinations of life, with more positive things.
Although I do understand that name calling is as effective as you can be when you have no good argument to put forth that makes sense, perhaps that’s the reason for the hatred toward someone you’ve never met and never will meet. I hope that’s all it is.
My taxes also pay for the roads and schools, although my children don’t go to public school (I fear they’d turn out like some of y’all if they did, since that’s what the schools are geared toward.) If you have a problem with people using roads, then perhaps you should go to one of those neighborhoods where no one pays any taxes, and tell them that you don’t want them using the roads, or the internet, (which adds a charge for taxes, at least on MY bill, perhaps yours is free so you don’t see that, or more likely your Mom pays it. Ask her about it.)
Nice chatting with y’all.
pS My ad valorum taxes pay for roads and my property taxes pay for schools, that’s over and above the $1000 per paycheck that goes in OTHER taxes, not to mention the myriad of fees that are actually taxes, and the taxers added to phone and internet bills.
If you think about, you wouldn’t be a democrat. Ha, no I was going to say if you think about it that’s a lot more taxes than the founding fathers paid to England.
Meg, you are exactly the person I’m talking about – no offense, but what you’ve said is one of the stupidest comments I’ve seen in a long time and is direct proof of what I said above.
People whine and make asinine statements about a general (not even real) condition i.e, “half the country sits on it’s butt waiting for a goverment check, when it should be out picking fruit” – disregarding the reality of the world about which this thread is about (that it’s incredibly hard work, takes skill and is marginalized, uninsured and migrant – meaning that at best, locals who did work the fields would only have a few months a year of work anyway, unless you support an entire class of migrant americans traveling around like during the dust bowl of the thirties). At least most of the others here who may think the law is not a terrible thing are looking at it from the lens of market principals – rightly or wrongly.
You on the other hand snidely sit there at your computer and offer nothing valid to the discourse, except validation of the argument that people like you were pandered to, and the situation in Georgia is the outcome of that pandering.
While I don’t agree with Third eyes tone, the “let them eat cake” posture your posts have is disgusting, contemptible, and as I said above, nihilist in it’s refusal to look at issues clearly and without assigning blame to others.
That’s rather amusing coming from the same person who wrote the following…
You really shouldn’t live in a glass house, darling…
I didn’t say they should all go out and pick fruit today. I said the government has made them helpless over the course of many years, and that’s not right. They are now, as I said, unable to take care of themselves, feed themselves, or even pick fruit.
Yet you think this is a good policy which should go on?
As for “let them eat cake” that’s not my attitude at all, although they ARE eating cake. And I am paying for it. As inflation creeps higher and higher we are giving up more and more and more to survive, we don’t have the same lifestyle we did, but those on the government dole do, and they’re trying to take more and more from us to keep them happy.
Welfare is more attractive than work. That’s what it comes down to, and if you make bad behavior less desirable, then you will end up with less bad behavior. Stop paying for every welfare baby. If every parent is told that any children born while on welfare will go to foster parents, then they have the choice of supporting themselves and having more children, or living out their lives on a handout, but not adding to the future generations of those unable to supprt themselves.
Make food stamps less attractive. Flour, sugar, baking soda, produce, all should be allowed, but not chips, twinkies, cola, if they want that stuff, they can get a job, maybe a nice agricultural job.
So I guess I’m saying DON’T let them eat cake, unless they cook it from scratch like I do. .
I’m not eaten up with anger, resenting everyone with a different opinion to the point of name calling. I am angry at the policies our government is foisting on us, that are dooming our country.
Anger that eats you up inside, because you are powerless in your life and you need to MAKE others think like you do, and makes you angry enough to call total strangers rude names, that’s the kind of anger I mean, it eats you up and makes you vote democrat.
There’s a big difference. Anger with a focus and a healthy outlet is how we change things, anger that can’t be articulated and is taken out on others is not healthy.
I used to be a democrat, I remember that mindset, and I wouldn’t go back to it for anything.
I don’t want to make the world in my image, I just don’t want the world to tread on me.
Dearest Meg –
I’m sure you’re aware that it was the GOP, in years 2000-2006, which got us into the current mess we’re in.
If you’re not aware of it, you should be.
So which is it? Are you unaware or just stupid?
The GOP is just as bad as the democratic party. The two Bushes are right down there with Obama and Carter and Clinton as the worst presidents ever, in terms of policy changes-changing the way unemployment is figured, changing the way inflation is figured, adding to the debt and big government, doing everything to make themselves look better better by hiding the problems instead of putting them out in the open and trying to solve them. Ugh
Even Reagan and Nixon implemented some bad policies (going off the gold standard was the worst!) but FDR and his New Deal started the destruction of our country.
It’s funny you assume I’m a republican. The democrats have done far more damage, except for the Bushes, who were in a league all their own, so I guess I consider democrats slightly worse than republicans, but none of them are going to fix things, and third party candidates don’t have a chance, so we’re probably all doomed.
@Thrid Eye — Agreed… that’s why I said proximity to an urban area is crucial. In that respect we in Western NY are pretty blessed.
@Meg, I have only pity for you, well contempt too, but mostly I channel that into pointing and laughing at your ignorant patootey. You want to reap the benefits of living in a 21st century economy, but you want to pay none of the upkeep for them. Instead, you whine about some amorphous mass of brown folks who do the hard wok that you and your ankle-biters OBVIOUSLY aren’t doing. Inflation? Really, you’re concerned about inflation? What are you going to say when American farmers can no longer compete with cheap imports and they are sold to agribusiness so they can farm corn and soy to be shipped overseas? That is real-world inflation, and you’re standing in the corner sippin’ on a milkshake waiving your team’s flag. Oh, I forgot, you appeared fully formed from the head of Zues, you have no philosophical or fiscal connection to all THOSE people, the RINOs you and your neighbors keep electing, right? You continue to be happy pretending you’re something other than the limp foreskin of the GOP, I will just keep pointing and laughing. Bless your heart…
@mattB, I guess i misinterpreted what your perspective was. I think whats happening in W NYS is wonderful, I look forward to using the template in other places. but the reality here is that there is just not nearly the population to offset these types of losses, and the extra costs of transporting these goods farther even if they were picked would make the whole shebang a losing proposition for the farmers anyways. But we do need more people pushing CSAs and subsidies for small farmers and regional Co-ops, not agribusiness.
I don’t mind paying upkeep, how is supporting an entire welfare class “upkeep”? How is it good for them or me? Please explain, and I will happily laugh at myself as well.
Inflation has nothing to do with your “brown” workers (your slave class, if you’re honest about it) it’s all about the devaluation of the currency and the out of control spending/debt orgy in DC right now.
Remember when Clinton sent all our jobs overseas with NAFTA, and we were going to live the “good life” on our stock profits? How’s that working out for everyone? He forgot to mention they’d be devaluing the currency eventually to ZImbabwean levels,
No, I’d pay more for food picked by American citizens. (The welfare class WILL pick it if they pay a little more, right? ‘Cause that’s such a GOOD program for them and mus, right?) I can’t afford to pay more for runaway inflation caused by a collapsing economy. One is a reasonable, worthwhile expense. The other is a political machination.
As for paying more because the government is redistributing my wealth to those who don’t feel like working, that is morally wrong. It’s wrong to take from children whose parents are trying to do their best and give it to people who only had children so they could qualify for “free” money. Those children are meal tickets and no care or thought is put into their upbringing. The proof of that is all around you. Supporting such a system does them no favors, but I guess it’s all about what YOU want?
You do realize that inflation is an increase in prices and thus hits the unemployed just as hard (in fact harder in most cases since they can’t reduce leisure spending much)?
Totally agree on all issues. And as I noted, scale of the farm is critical here. Even in Western NY (and apparently places in Florida that are having the same problem and are positioned to do “pick your own.”) the U-Pick is a risky proposition — especially with the strange growing seasons we’ve been having. CSAs work out better, but still need more support as well.
This is definitely one area where smaller cities, near more rural areas, are uniquely positioned to help support local farms.
Yes, I’m not talking about the unemployed, I feel very bad that Clinton sent all the jobs away. The only way to bring jobs back is to bring back manufacturing.
I’m talking about the welfare lifestyle, not people who need a hand in bad times, but people who have never worked, and will never willingly work, that I’m working harder to support.
Oh, and as for how my neighbors voted, they have free will, and minds of their own, I can’t force them to do what I say, I wouldn’t even want to try, as I said, I’m NOT a democrat. I don’t need to bend people to my will to justify my existence.
I don’t think democrat or republican politicians have our best interests at heart, and I don’t think it matters any more WHO you vote for, they’re all bad. And third party candidates don’t have a chance, unfortunately. I vote third party anyway just so I won’t be responsible for whatever joker gets in the white house.
@Meg, see this is your problem, and why you have such a tiny little black heart. The Welfare Queens you imagine sitting on their duff soaking up your hard-earned duccots? Yeah, they didn’t exist in any meaningful number when Reagan said it, and they still don’t today, even while you’re fellating his zombie corpse. Instead, most of the “welfare queens” you’re talking about are your neighbors, and who probably don’t like the idea of taking assistance anymore than I am sure you would. The problem here is that you’re willing to let these people die under a bridge so you can pretend that its all our best interests, while their kids turn to crime. Then you will be whining about building more prisons to house all these “thugs”. Go look up the term “confirmation bias” and then look in a mirror sweetheart.
Are you so rigidly ignorant that you can’t realize that an illegal alien is not going to be in a welfare office trying to get benefits when the chances are slim they will get them, but the chances of being on law enforcement radar is much higher? Many of these immigrants live in shadow communities at the whim of their employers and society. If we actually address the immigration issue without all the hyperbole about anchor-babies (who are your fellow Americans you evil wench) and Cadillac healthcare (way to employ BS memes) we could get these people away from being seen as merely slave labor.
Well, it’s nice to see you can judge me without having read my posts,. You must be psych-ic.
I said that if food stamps could only be use for basic food ingredients, like flour, sugar, produce, baking soda, etc, instead of chips and twinkies and coila, it would people an incentive to work for the food they prefer.It would also be cheaper. How is that “condemning them to live under a bridge?” LOL, such drama! Oh, I have SUCH a black heart! No twinkie for you, 400 lb welfare queen (I can show you where they live if you want) I am Meg the black hearted, denier of twinkies.
I also said that if their welfare payments were limited to the children they have when they sign up, with future children either supported by them or put into foster care, it would take away the incentive to have children who can’t support themselves because they’ve seen no example of it.
Ugh. The appearance of the strident and shallow doctrinaire during a more nuanced and factual discussion held by reasonable people is generally an occasion of social awkwardness.
It was blind adherence to doctrine without consideration of consequences which lead to Georgia’s sad and ironic dilemma. It hardly seems that a reversion to such blind adherence to hard and broad principles is the path to a solution.
Exactly, if they had considered the consequences of welfare, or NAFTA, or leaving the gold standard, would they have enacted them? They just wanted more votes, more bribes, more short term gratification.
Eric J. wrote:
So basically, the way to solve the problem of low fill rate for undesirable jobs is… to get rid of the minimum wage?
Because all of the people who won’t take a job at $7 an hour would be happy to take it at $4?
@Meg, so you want the crack-head children of cack-hos digging through the cook books to figure out how to make penny-cakes while crack-ho mom is working the fields? Yeah, you are all kinds of stupid. Then, you want all the kids that the gov’t has seen to get free care, but any more and the kids need to be put in foster care? Can we take the same tack for welfare recipients who smoke? What about those that consume too much fat in their diet? What horrible God curled into a ball and let you run the ministry of compassion? So you want more latch-key kids taken and put into State custody, who will be paid for by State and Federal dollars (way to go with lessening gov’t intervention in society) and then discount the after-effects such as anti-social behavior from these kids you have ripped from the only home they have ever known. You really are an evil wench, a very ignorant, evil wench. Keep your twinkies, I would hate to see what you write if you haven’t had your 6000th calorie for the day.
Heh, just like a democrat, no solutions,no ideas, just insults for those who actually think about things and try to come up with some. Maybe if you shame everyone who has an opinion by insulting them, no one will notice that you don’t actually have an opinion, or an idea, or much of anything going on.
OK, you support them ALL, invite them all into your home so you can show your special brand of compassion that I see evidenced here. I will happily take the label of “hard hearted” and keep my $1000 per paycheck and let you put your good thoughts into action. I have nothing to prove. If I help people I want it to be because I feel compassion, not because the government is robbing me blind, and you resent people who have more than you do, and use the unfortunate as a cover to take out your anger and frustration on them..
Thanks for taking one for the team.
However, I doubt you pay taxes, and I doubt you earn very much,and I don’t think your Mom will let all those people live in the basement with you. But maybe it will work out.
Apparently Meg slept through the ’90s, when Clinton and the Republicans ended the kind of welfare she’s whining about. It was always a myth — although a useful one for conservatives — and now it’s a fairy tale.
But in Meg land fat black women are having babies all the time so they can steal her tax dollars while she home schools her own children into unemployability.
Of course, sleeping through the 90s also explains why Meg thinks “you’re in your mother’s basement” is some kind of clever retort. Me, I’m still chuckling over her claim that the government takes $1000 out of her paychecks. Wal-Mart must have raised the greeter pay substantially.
Let’s see, welfare and SS and medicaid are a 60 TRILLION dollar unfunded liability. SSI pays $800 a month to children with attention deficit disorder (in other words, normal kids with child-like attention spans) and over HALF of the US receives their income from the government. 44% get food stamps. Virtually ALL illegal immigrant babies are on WIC, even La Raza admits it.. Oh yeah, must be my imagination. Or someone has their head somewhere where the view is not good.
LOL, it’s so funny that y’all can’t see that when there are far more consumers than producers society is unsustainable. It seems really obvious to me. Check out the roman empire, they had the exact same problem. As I recall, it didn’t end well.
Y’all are going to run out of other people’s money pretty quick, you know.
I consider these public service messages, Maybe it will wake someone up, although I doubt it.
Hi Meg I had ADD as a kid and I was legal recognized as such by the government.. SO where’s my 800 bucks a month that neither my mom or I when I was a child? Reading on all I can do is /facepalm because your claims just get dumber and dumber…
Well, Matt, you missed out on free government money. Both kids next door to me received it, that’s how I know the amount, and if you check the SSS website you can get more info, or you can check your brain, and not finding the info there, decide that someone who DID research it is dumb,
I applaud your typical democrat research methods.
As for WR, that is the most racist statement I have heard in years. I had to sleep on it before replying to that.
Are you saying only black women are on welfare? Wow, insult an entire race AND a gender in one sentence. What about the state of WV? A huge percentage on welfare but it’s 98% white, last time I checked the stats,. Racism is DISGUSTING and no way to make your point. Half the newspaper staff at my college consisted of black women and they were all extremely intelligent and would never take CHARITY over earning a meaningful living.
That is LOW, dude. Check your facts. The welfare class consists of ALL races and ethnicities.
Oh, knock it off, Meg. We all know that “strapping young bucks” and “welfare queens in Cadillacs” are racist buzzwords, intended to make poor whites think blacks are stealing from them. You want to call someone racist, go after St. Ronnie.
As for what you consider “welfare” — I’ve been paying into Social Security and Medicare for decades. I haven’t taken a penny back, since I’m still too young. (Good to be too young for something.) But if you’re going to decide that government insurance programs that we all pay for are welfare, then you have no idea what welfare is.
I am sorry, though, that the people of the United States have decided it’s a good thing not to let poor children starve, even if they are brown. I realize this makes you very unhappy, and you can’t live a rich life until you can actually see them lying in the street begging the way they do in third-world countries, and my heart goes out to you in your suffering.
You are still defining everything by color. That is not acceptable in a debate. The welfare/entitlement crowd comes in all colors, I read about Chinese doctors signing their parents up for SSI and bringing them over to live off our government, welfare queens come in every color and ethnicity and it is terrible of you to try to make it sound like only one race takes advantage of the system.
I didn’t say they should starve, but yet again a democrat has decided they know what I said WITHOUT actually reading it. What an amazing talent, but wrong. For the third time, if food stamps could only be used for produce, inexpensive meats, and ingredients such as flour, sugar, cooling oil, etc, I would have no problem. If someone is cooking their meals from scratch (like I do) then I am happy to help them This also gives them an INCENTIVE to work, if they want to be able to buy the processed foods (which are bad for you, but if it’s their money then they should be able to buy them) that they are used to, such as twinkies etc.
Also, No additional welfare for babies born to parents already on welfare, those children need to be supported by their parents or sent to foster care if they’re not able. Supporting your own child is a fundamental duty of parents, and if they know they can’t but keep having them anywa, then they are scamming the system and expecting me to hand over my money to pay for a child they are only using as a meal ticket.
If you think you’re going to see a penny of your social security, then I’m sorry, it was used to buy pepsi for the welfare crowd. Hope you don’t mind.
I’m not against social security, I think whether or not you participate should be a CHOICE, and I AM against SSI payouts for children who have nothing wrong with them. “Oh. your child runs around the house jumping and playing? NO, that has nothing to do with the fact kids can’t go outside and play anymore, here’s $800 a month for 18 years.” That needs to stop right NOW. That is ridiculous and it’s draining away the social security that people are paying into, so that it won’t be there when they need it.
So having people eat healthy food causes suffering and I’m hard hearted? OK, what does that say about you?.
So Meg — Who chooses which foods are appropriate for those parasites to eat? You?
Also, I suppose it’s possible that you care so little about your own children you’d give them up for a couple of dollars, but I’m not sure that all poor mothers feel the same way. So if they do love their children too much to give them away and you have cut off WIC for them, then you’re okay if the children grow up malnourished? You don’t care that their brains will never develop properly due to malnutrition, and they’ll never be able to lead successful lives? Or maybe you’d prefer they just die in the streets?
Now you can go back to calling me a racist for pointing out the historical truth that Republicans have always used race-hatred to sell cuts in the safety net. But first tell me — if the government said you could get back everything you pay in taxes if you gave up a couple of your kids, which ones would you choose?
Since I had my kids because I wanted them, and I take care of them as any responsible parent does,, I would choose my kids. Would welfare recipients? I love my children enough to WORK and take care of them. You’re saying people who expect strangers to support their children love them more than parents who don’t mind working hard to provide for their kids? IF you love your kids, you make sacrifices. I sold my entire comic book collection once to buy formula, I sold all my darkroom equipment to buy formula,, I’ve worked jobs that were hard physical labor, I’ve always come through for my kids, yet that makes me a bad parent, while someone who expects to be paid cash for their child’s care and then spends it all on drugs for themselves, that’s a good parent? You ARE a democrat!
The greatest incentive I have is to take care of my kids. If I got a weekly check to do nothing, I would have no incentive to teach my kids a work ethic by example and I would fail them as a parent.
It is a point of your RACISM that you ASSUME that these children would be malnourished if I weren’t supporting them (thanks for the vote of confidence in MY abilities, anyway. It’s nice to be so indispensable!) Do you really think that their parents would let them starve or be malnourished? Do you really think it makes society better to pay people to vegetate, rather than to encourage them to produce, to work, and to teach their children to work by example? Don’t you think they would be more satisfied if they cooked their meals from scratch and earned the money they spent? Wouldn’t that fill the void that is current;y being filled by drugs and twinkies?
You do them a disservice, and you underestimate them (a product of your inherent racism) if you think their lives are better for receiving “free” money, instead of gaining the satisfaction of working for it and supporting themselves.
Breast milk is all a baby needs for their brains to develop. I suppose you’re going to tell me I have to breast feed them too, aren’t you? It would follow the rest of your “philosophy.” How is a home cooked meal by a gainfully employed mom going to be worse for children than a microwave dinner and a bag of chips? Are there no vitamins in home made whole grain bread, only in twinkies and cheese puffs? You’re not even making any sense. Maybe you need a nap or something.
Meg – Well, now that you’ve sold off your comic books, let’s say you lose your job. And let’s say your husband loses his job. And because there’s almost ten percent unemployment in this country, let’s say you can’t get another job. Do you think your kids should go hungry?
And I’m curious — do you have no friends who are having tough times in this economy? Do you actually know nobody who’s a good worker, a hard worker, but unable to find a job? Do you really think that those millions of people who have been collecting unemployment for a year or more are just lazy?
I’ve already said I’m talking about generational welfare and the entitlement crowd, not hard working people who fall on hard times, But since you mention it, our house is paid for, our cars are paid for (if somewhat old), we’re about to switch our house to solar power, and early next year I want a water well and composting toilets. I have been through hard times and learned my lesson, debt free and self sufficient is the way to go.
We’re working on our garden right now, we only have 1/3 of an acre but we planted fruit trees and berry shrubs and ordered earth boxes for the tomatoes. If our city allowed chickens I’d order some of those, too. We also have a deep pantry. We did all this instead of adding a home theater and big screen TV (we don’t watch TV anyway) or going on vacations or buying SUVs and keeping them in gas.
In case of sudden unemployment we’d have to give up cell phones and internet (we have no landline.) Our pantry has enough food for at least six months, more if we supplement with a garden. I learned to can and dehydrate, that will help too.
I’m much happier since we became more self sufficient. I feel a lot more secure now that I have control over our lives. I know what it’s like to not know how to make a loaf of bread, to be dependent on others for help, and it did not make me happy.
Learning self sufficiency, taking more and more control of my life, that is what made me feel happy and safe. I want that for everyone, I don’t want to write them off a check and forget them, I want them to be able to take care of themselves the way I learned to do. I expect it of them just as I expect it of my children.
I read about a woman in a grocery store just before a hurricane, all the bread was sold out and she was holding a bag of flour and she said “Doesn’t this make bread somehow?”
That’s what happened to people in ancient Rome. That’s what happens in an entitlement society.
When we reach that point, the collapse of society is a possibility.
Hey Meg — I realize that you slept through the 90s, but there is no more generational welfare. What you’re complaining about doesn’t exist except in the racist fantasies of truly terrible people.
Yes, Meg. Rome fell because people didn’t know how to make bread. I can’t believe you forgot to mention your doctorate in history.
“I’ve already said I’m talking about generational welfare and the entitlement crowd, not hard working people who fall on hard times”
And how many people do you think that is, and how much do you think they cost the federal government?
I ask because you kicked this off by claiming half the population was sitting around collecting checks. After you got pushback, you backpeddled and said that you weren’t talking about people getting unemployment checks, just generational welfare (and the “entitlement crowd”, which I don’t really get… are you talking about Social Security, Medicare/Medicaid? Huh?).
I tried googling welfare as a % of federal budget and found this:
$565.2 Billion for FY2010, but $194.3B of that is unemployment. That leaves $370.9B out of a total of $3.72 trillion. Basically 10%. That is likely higher than normal due to the aftereffects of the most serious economic downturn since the Great Depression.
For comparison, I looked at FY 2007. Non-unemployment welfare spending was $222.9B out of a total of a little over $2.7T in spending (not sure if that’s accurate given that Bush had a habit of keeping war spending off the books?), or 8.2%.
So generally 8-10% of federal spending is on welfare. What do you think is the appropriate %? Are you proposing 0? 5? Some other number?
And I should have noted, that the 8-10% is welfare, not “generational welfare”, not that I know how to track such a thing. That’s all non-unemployment welfare (including, by the way, the cost of things like the Earned Income Tax Credit).
I’m a farmer in Ga and we’re getting by. Neighbors are helping out. Schools out for we’re getting teens wanting jobs and we have the equipment out in the fields. Yes we may not get it all harvested but we’ll get by. So you libs can keep your illegals and we’ll keep our food
Rome fell because it was cut off from the agricultural base. After 800 years of living in the city, people had no idea how to grow food or build things, they were completely helpless.
Since the agricultural base was being constantly raided to provide for the city, more and moer farmers left and moved to the city. Consumers outnumbered producers by an astronomical margin.
Yes, I actually do have a degree in history. I minored in it, at least. I was always fascinated by Rome, but the parallels to our present day society are disturbing. Russia was interesting too, and there are some parallels there as well.
Rome had air conditioning, running water, the Coliseum could be flooded for sea battles using full sized ships, but a growing helpless and ignorant populace was a huge part of their downfall.
They would have sworn the city could never fall and the empire could never fail, right up until the end.
SSI has replaced generational welfare, as I mentioned earlier. Giving SSi automatically gives medicaid and food stamps. 44% of all Americans receive food stamps. Over HALF of Americans receive their income from the government. Does that sound like generational welfare has been eliminated?
Who is asleep NOW?
I’d say Rome fell because of Imperial overstretch (and the inherent difficulty of protecting the territory they held, given how long the land borders were) + civil wars + the influx of “barbarian” peoples being push westward (coupled with some stupid decisions by Roman authorities).
I thinik the civil wars are an underrated factor. Rome largely tore herself apart, due to a dysfunctional political system. Massively dysfunctional, in ways that make our system and our leaders look great by comparison.
“44% of all Americans receive food stamps. Over HALF of Americans receive their income from the government.”
I looked up the first of these claims. It is false. Approximately 45 million Americans are on food stamps, which is what, 13-14% of the total population? That is certainly a cause for concern, though I think you’ve got the wrong root cause. For a variety of reasons, too many of our people are out of work. I don’t find the argument you are advancing (basically “they’d work if they had to, but the government gives them money so they don’t”) unconvincing.
I have to run now so I don’t have time to look up the second claim, but it’s ridiculous on its face. I’m certain that it too is false.
Where are you getting these “facts”???
I’m talking about SSI for the healthy, unfunded social security (the part you DIDN’T pay in), food stamps, WIC, medicaid and unemployment extensions not funded by unemployment insurance.
People should be responsible for their own food and medical care, if they can’t take care of it, they should not have baby after baby that they also can’t take care of themselves.
These social programs are a 60 TRILLION dollar unfunded liability. We’re going “Galt” as much as possible. There is no way this ponzi scheme can keep going, we don’t want to participate.
This whole discussion will be moot when the economy collapses under the weight of unfunded liabilities, and you will really miss your old lifestyles, and eventually start to think, “Hmm, maybe I was wrong.” Especially since those in the welfare lifestyle will be clamoring at your door for more “direct” help.
Too late then, though.
Check SSI funding. Check medicaid, check food stamps, add it all together.
But the main point is you’re not helping these people, you’re not helping them to learn to take care of themselves, you’re bribing them with free money to vote democrat. You’re USING them.
45 million HOUSEHOLDS are3 on food stamps. How many people do you think that is?
At the bottom of the page it has unfunded liabilities, at the side it has number of families and number of food stamp recipients (who represent a family)
The government added $5.3 trillion in new financial obligations in 2010, largely for retirement programs such as Medicare and Social Security. That brings to a record $61.6 trillion the total of financial promises not paid for.
A lot of people say we should just send the long-term unemployed into the fields. What those people don’t consider is that most of the long-term unemployed (the 99ers) are over 50. Many are pushing 60.
Let’s be realistic: can you picture the average 55-year-old picking crops in the hot sun all day? Particularly if that individual hasn’t performed a labor job in at least 30 years, if ever? If you were an employer, would you hire someone like that? I wouldn’t. It’d be a workers’ compensation case–or worse yet, a wrongful death suit–waiting to happen. If someone drops dead of a heart attack while working in your fields, guess who will get sued?
Even the illegal immigrants who currently do these jobs are young people, not senior citizens.
Slightly over half of all Americans – 52.6 percent – now receive significant income from government programs, according to an analysis by Gary Shilling, an economist in Springfield, N.J. That’s up from 49.4 percent in 2000 and far above the 28.3 percent of Americans in 1950. If the trend continues, the percentage could rise within ten years to pass 55 percent, where it stood in 1980 on the eve of President’s Reagan’s move to scale back the size of government.
Any more questions?
WASHINGTON — Tax Day is a dreaded deadline for millions, but for nearly half of U.S. households it’s simply somebody else’s problem.
How long can this go on? When band aid sang “Feed the world” I didn’t know they were talking to me personally.I’m tired of it. Give a man a fish and he’ll riot and burn down the city if you don’t give him as many fish as he wants, in all different flavors, every day for the rest of his life. TEACH a man to fish, and I can spend my money on my kids instead of some dude who didn’t even know how to turn on the oven.
Meg — The USDA says just under 40 million are now on food stamps. That is not the same as 44%.
Apparenlty you got your degreein statistics the same place you got your degree in history.
See my above post.
Illegals only get food stamps for their anchor babies, yet the entire household depends on them. The head of each household gets food stamps, but everyone in the house eats off them, that’s why the “per person” amount is especially high in areas with illegals. It’s way more than we spend on food. That’s how some people can afford to sell their food stamps for drugs.
How many people do you think are in each household? I know of three families in our neighborhood who have an anchor baby, and they use that child’s food stamps for their whole family. WIC, too.
44% is conservative.
Oooh so not having to pay income tax = living off the government.. Wow…. You probably also think that none of those people pay any taxes or work at all…
Boy, keep someone like Meg going long enough and the real agenda comes out. “Anchor babies” and giant families of illegal stealing her tax money.
Here’sa clue, Meg. Those “anchor babies” you loathe so much are every bit the citizen that you are. Actually, I’d say more so, since they don’t waste their time spewing hatred towards their fellow Americans.
If you look at an article above, Mat, it says over half of Americans depen on the governemnt for their income.
Which parts of that do you need explained? I’m always happy to help.
I don’t loathe anchor babies, they’re adorable, but I see them for what they are and I call them what they are and I’m helping to support them.
I’m not a demonrat, so I don’t have to use the PC terms for anything. It’s very liberating.
Calling an American citizen whose skin happens to be the wrong color an “anchor” is not simply “not using the PC term.” It’s bigotry, pure and simple.
How lovely that you feel “liberated” at consigning your fellow citizens to a lower class of existence. But that’s been the way the Sourthern power elite has kept power of lower class whites forever — by assuring them they’re better than the darkies. Guess it’s still working.
WR, You are a hoot! “Southern Power elite” LOL!!!
OK, I guess democrats aren’t that different if they can have conspiracy theories too. I love conspiracy theories about “the elite.”
And you used the word “darkies.” LOL If a repuglican (not a misspelling) did that they’d be crucified, y’all are much more fun to argue with. Easier, too.
SO you say I’m bad for saying “anchor babies” then in the same post you use the word “darkies.”
I love it. I I will treasure this disagreement forever.
You shouldn’t be so racist, though. It’s not nice. You might hurt the feelings of someone who reads this page. You should think before you say things like that.
But still, the hypocrisy was stunning and classic. Thanks.
Speaking of “southern power” ours is about to go out, it’s storming. I’ll be glad when the solar power panels are installed.
Yes, little Meg. I suppose your degree in reading comprehension is from that same university. And if you really don’t understand how rich slave holders used race hatred to exploit poor whites, and how rich Southerners have continued to persuade poor whites to vote against their interests in the same way, then you know less about your own history than you do that of Rome.
My last question: When the lights go out in your house, how will you be able to tell?
My last question: When the lights go out in your house, how will you be able to tell?
LOL I guess it will be when I see things from your point of view!
I could make a claim that everyone relies on the government for income and somewhat prove it (the kevin bacon game in monetary form)..
Oh? So you’ve never used the labor of people who are here illegally to help you on your farm? How have you checked to make sure that none of the people who have worked on your farm are here illegally?
Under Title 8 Section 1325 of the U.S. Code, “Improper Entry by Alien,” any citizen of any country other than the United States who:
Enters or attempts to enter the United States at any time or place other than as designated by immigration officers; or
Eludes examination or inspection by immigration officers; or
Attempts to enter or obtains entry to the United States by a willfully false or misleading representation or the willful concealment of a material fact;
has committed a federal crime.
Violations are punishable by criminal fines and imprisonment for up to six months. Repeat offenses can bring up to two years in prison. Additional civil fines may be imposed at the discretion of immigration judges, but civil fines do not negate the criminal sanctions or nature of the offense.
“People should be responsible for their own food and medical care, if they can’t take care of it, they should not have baby after baby that they also can’t take care of themselves.”
And if they can’t; like say, if they suddenly become unemployed, what then?
So, James, I presume that you think people should NOT be responsible for their own food and medical care? They should simply trust society/the government/Big Brother to tend to the necessities of life for them?
I never said anything of the sort. My only question is what to do with those who need assistance for basic necessities, if we were to construct a society in the mold of what Meg is advocating.
I’m honestly curious.
Its SO obvious that a liberal wrote that news article! Don’t worry, my left-wing NUT JOB.. looks like those illegals will unfortunately be RETURNING to those fields now that liberal judges are ripping that law to shreds. The law that ‘could’ have been SUCCESSFUL in cutting BACK illegal immigration, that is. As if government would ever actually let that HAPPEN though! Freaking incompetent left wingers!!! WHAT PART OF ‘ILLEGAL’ DOESN’T OUR GOVERNMENT UNDERSTAND??!! They’re not even doing their JOBS… so states are finally stepping in and doing it THEMSELVES!! Which I see nothing wrong with!!
@Datechguy: YEAH!! Let’s do what the Khmyer Rouge and China’s Peoples Revolution did, ship all those city folk without jobs to the countryside to pick watermelons! (sarcasm)
Hey Meg, let me tell you about who more of your taxes are going to support to sit on their asses. My BIL worked 35yrs as a supervisor for Halliburton, made excellent money, stock options, yearly bonuses, etc. When Cheney came in as CEO back in the ’90s, he got rid of all these ‘overpaid’ older workers and hired young people and my BIL went to work as a ‘consultant’ in the same industry and formed his own ‘corporation’ and put his wife, my sister, on the ‘payroll’ because their tax-accountant told him. ‘all my clients do this so their wives can get the top SS retirement when they get 65-66 without really working, which will effectively double your own SS retirement- for both of you. So my sister, who never worked a day in her life, now gets over $1700/mo in SS. All perfectly legal. Multiply THAT by millions who do the same thing to cheat the system and it makes what little ‘welfare’ your crack-hos are supposedly getting look like peanuts. BTW, my BIL and sis are faithful Republicans who are quite happy to cheat the system every chance they get, and they get plenty because they also own 5 acres with their home and raise a calf on it every year and so get tax-write-offs out the ass and an ‘agricultural enterprise’. And when any natural disaster is declared, like the present drought that has just been declared in Texas by that nasty old Obama, they get a big fat ‘gumint’ check- $100,000.
And BTW, Bill Clinton did away with the old welfare and it’s now ‘workfare’, something the Repukes just loved, and as well, he passed NAFTA which sent millions of jobs south, which the Repukes also loved. So get your head on straight, the false choices are just 2 sides of the same coin, and that’s called ‘corporatism’.
LOL! Actually Jane, it’s the Republican party that loves the system of illegal workers because guess who all those corporate hotels and restaurants, farms and meat-packing outfits like Tyson, Hormel, and Armour, all those garment industry, all those construction outfits, etc etc etc likes to hire for cheap wages to do the cleaning, picking, lifting, making, building, etc etc etc????
Go ahead, look back in recent history to see who tried to stop any anti-immigration bills in DC. LMAO!
I’m curious Meg, did you complain about government spending when GWB took us to 2 wars, one that has lasted 10 yrs with no end in sight? Did you complain when he doubled the national debt? How about when he took the surplus budget left to him and ran trough it like a drunken sailor and left a big red hole of a budget when he left office, not even including his idiotic wars in the federal government’s or Defense Dept’s budget? Did you complain when he gave the insurance and pharmaceutical industries a giant boondoggle with his Medicare PartD? Dija Meg, huh? Dija?
I’m sorry, you just make it too easy. LMAO!
If you folks can’t think of a single negative impact of illegal immigration, then there is little basis for discussion.
I’ve always found it amusing that people defend non-enforcement of laws rather than striving to change the law.
If the Rule of Law means nothing to you, again, there is little basis for discussion.