My name is Jason. I turned 35 less than a week ago. My first job was maintenance work at a public pool when I was 17. I worked 40-hours a week while I was in college. I’ve never gone longer than six months without employment in my life and I just spent the last three years in the military, one of which consisted of a combat tour of Afghanistan.
Oh, and I’m now on food stamps. Since June, as a matter of fact.
Why am I on food stamps?
The same reason everyone on food stamps is on food stamps: because I would very much enjoy not starving.
I mean, if that’s okay with you:
…Mr. or Mrs. Republican congressman.
…Mr. or Mrs. Conservative commentator.
…Mr. or Mrs. “welfare queen” letter-to-the-editor author.
…Mr. or Mrs. “fiscal conservative, reason-based” libertarian.
I do apologize for burdening you on the checkout line with real-life images of American-style poverty. I know you probably believe the only true starving people in the world have flies buzzing around their eyes while they wallow away, near-lifeless in gutters.
Hate to burst the bubble, but those people don’t live in this country.
I do. And millions like me. Millions of people in poverty who fall into three categories.
What kinda yield you get out of your garden this year? Figure to nail a deer this season and put that on the table too? Because you can't depend on these government programs because at the rate they're spending they WILL run out of money, no matter how many pretty pictures the National Reserve prints. Remember during the wold war collecting "currency of the world" for like $2.50 an envelope, largely stuffed with currency from ComBlock and 3rd world nations not worth the paper it was printed on in many cases, but some of it qualified as halfway decent artwork.
The Federal Reserve had better start hiring more artists, start printing on a multispectral press, and pray that no one notices they're really buying postcard art.
Actually things aren't QUITE that bad yet, but our debt is approaching 100% of our GDP, and that's fairly significantly even for an average family, and would mostly be represented by secured mortgage debt. The only thing the US Government has to secure its debt is us.
Let’s call them the “lucky” category, since conservatives seem to think people on welfare have hit some sort of jackpot:
Those living paycheck to paycheck? They’re a little lucky.
Those living unemployment check to unemployment check? They’re a little luckier.
Those living 2nd of the month to 2nd of the month? *ding* We’ve hit the jackpot!
The 2nd of the month being the time when funds gets electronically deposited onto the EBT card, for those who’ve never been fortunate enough to hit that $175/month Powerball.
I fall into the latter two categories. But I’ve known people recently - soldiers in the Army – who were in the first and third. They were off fighting in Afghanistan while their wives were at home, buying food at the on-post commissary with food stamps.
And nobody bats an eye there, because it’s not uncommon in the military.
It’s not uncommon – nor is it shameful. It might be shameful how little service-members are paid, but that’s a separate issue.
The fact remains anyone at a certain income level can find it difficult from time to time to pay for everything. And when you’re poor you learn to make sacrifices. Food shouldn’t be one of them.
The whole concept is un-American. People living here, in the greatest country on Earth, with the most abundant resources, should be forced to go hungry because of the intellectual notion of fiscal conservatism and the ideological notion of self-reliance.
Are you #$%$ kidding me?
I didn’t risk my life in Afghanistan so I could come back and watch people go hungry in America. I certainly didn’t risk it so *I* could come back and go hungry.
heh, i once calculated may pay as a newly graduated US Army tank crewman, and it came to about .25c per hour. exclusive of benefits like clothing allowance (giving you a fraction of the money needed to maintain your uniforms) and for those living off post (not bloody likely in my time unless you were at least an E5) allowances for quarters and separate rations (meaning if you ate in the mess hall you had to pay for it, and an all you can eat mess hall is a great thing when you're young and growing).
No, if you're planning on getting rich the military is NOT the path. You'll just likely die broke wondering which of the various body bits flying through the air at the moment might belong to you, and hoping its none . . .
If all of you lefties, liberal and OBIMBO lovers would have voted Republican and elected a real president - just about everybody would have a job, because we might just have a strong ECONOMY - stupid!