Comments about ‘Letter: Welfare reform’

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Published: Friday, Aug. 1 2014 12:00 a.m. MDT

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John Charity Spring
Back Home in Davis County, UT

Thomas F Meagher once famously said "The purpose of welfare is to sustain life, not a lifestyle. " That is exactly the problem: welfare has become a means of propping up lifestyles, rather than for the emergency, temporary measure it was intended to be.

No one can be truly happy when they are living on the government dole. Happiness comes from self-reliance and self-sufficiency. If the current left-wing administration really cared about the happiness of the citizens, it would teach them that principle.

From the Beginning, it was declared that man must earn his bread by the sweat of his own brow. We must return to following that declaration.

The Real Maverick
Orem, UT

As long as this applies to corporations as well!


Remember how Fox News blasted that surfer who was on food stamps?

Yet, they celebrate all the tax subsidies, grants, and "welfare" corporations are getting. We empower them and how do they repay us?

They buy a foreign company they claim that their foreign company actually owns them. That way, they get out of paying any American taxes. This is called inversion and Fox News recently reported it and not one person on that entire channel criticized this practice.

In other words, a few hundred dollars per year for a surfer on food stamps? Outrageous! We need to reform the system immediately to fix this problem!

Billions lost on corporate welfare? Meh! Not a big deal.

If you haven't seen Colbert or Stewart report this, then you should.

E Sam
Provo, UT

Good letter. A graduated program would make all kinds of sense.

one old man
Ogden, UT

JCS, you completely missed the point of this letter.

You are also completely missing the point of the teachings given in The Sermon on the Mount and a bunch of other places by the man for whom our church is named.

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah

Whose family is on welfare? Whose neighbor is on welfare? Whose friends are are welfare?

Our family helps each other. Our neighbors help each other. Our friends help each other. Government has no responsibility to care for our personal needs; that is a duty of the people, not of the State.

Happy Valley Heretic
Orem, UT

Mike Richards said: 'Whose family is on welfare? Whose neighbor is on welfare? Whose friends are are welfare?
Our family helps each other. Our neighbors help each other. Our friends help each other. Government has no responsibility to care for our personal needs; that is a duty of the people, not of the State."

Well then your not doing your job, so the state has to step in and help.

Oh yeah you always forget that "We are the government, local and nationally, and you can't possible know the needs of everyone in your community, nor would you help, without certain conditions you or your religion would require.
It's no longer the 18th century, we are not a frontier nation, you are not a closed community in the wilderness.

one old man
Ogden, UT

"Whose family is on welfare? Whose neighbor is on welfare? Whose friends are are welfare?"

Good questions.

Many of us might be very surprised to discover that a lot of our neighbors and the people we see at church every Sunday are, in fact, receiving some sort of government assistance.

Whose family is on welfare?
Some of yours could be.

Whose neighbor is on welfare?
Some of your may be.

Whose friends are on welfare?
Some of yours might be.

And if they are not on welfare right now, there's a chance they have been in the past. Or will be in the future.

2 bits
Cottonwood Heights, UT

Welfare Reform has worked in the past.

It worked under Bill Clinton! Remember Newt Gengrich and the "Contract with America"??? Google it.

It worked! But reform doesn't last forever. "Reform" is usually temporary. And the forces that got you there the first time... are eventually going to get you there again... and you need to "Reform" again. It's just the way social systems are.

We are at the point where we need to reform again. But it will have to wait until Barack Obama is out of office. Because he believes Saul Alinsky and his theories. Google it. It's where we are headed today... and where the Progressive movement WANTS us to go.

I will go kicking and fighting the whole way down... Who knows... maybe we will come to our senses before it's too late. We worked in 1994... it could work again!

Remember... the Saul Alinsky plan is not to IMPROVE our CURRENT Government. It's designed to overwhelm and COLLAPSE our Government... so the people will BEG for them to replace it with something better (Which the Progressives would claim is "Marxism").

John Charity Spring
Back Home in Davis County, UT

Old man conveniently ignores the fact that nothing in the New Testament advocates laziness, sloth, and living off the hard work of others. Rather, man is instructed that he has a duty to work to provide for himself and his family. That is irrefutable fact!

Open Minded Mormon
Everett, 00

I know CORPORATIONS [who are now supposed to be "people" too, right?] who have been on welfare for a few DECADES.

It amazes me how people like this go after a woman with kids trying to feed her family with food stamps,
Completely ignores the Corporate Welfare Queens receiving $100's of BILLIONS of dollars in Free hand outs,
while still making $100's of Billions in profits, and not paying taxes.

But go ahead,
write and complain about your neighbor,
and keep voting for those you support those who TRULY are taking advantage of and milking the system a Trillion times worse...

American Fork, UT

I know it won't happen, and certainly I've said it before, but a single payer health system would be one major component of making this happen.

Sandy, UT

Seriously people... you need to stop the ANTI Corporation comments.

Corporations as well as Small Businesses gets all types of help from the Government. But they also provides a lot of Tax base for Government, they provide employment for people who in turn pays taxes.

The letter writer has a good thought, my sister was in a situation where she needed help because of her husband actions (which she had no control). Sorry Mike Richards, but the family was not in a position to help, so she went on welfare to help raise her son. She worked hard to go to school and get the education she needed to improve her life, like the letter writer, my sister was penalized for improving her situation.

I also have thought that if they had a graduated rate of help as the person improved their income, would help them get back on their feet more firmly.

Mike Richards.... IF you truly believe that then you do not understand the teaching of your church leaders.

Anti Bush-Obama
Chihuahua, 00

It's called enslavement. The Governments whole goal is to get everybody dependant on them. They do not want you to get off welfare and they make it almost impossible to do so.

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah

One of the most pathetic things that I've ever heard was "the family was not in a position to help". NO ONE would ever be in a position to help if they first counted their pennies, totalled up their dreams and then saw that if they kept a brother or sister or aunt or uncle from starving, that they couldn't buy that new car or take that nice vacation.

Needs come before wants. Wants come before desires. There is enough and to spare to take care of the needs of everyone but there will never be enough to take care of greed.

I've spent a few hours reading some of the demographics between Republicans and Democrats. Republicans give 30% more to charity than Democrats but Democrats earn more money than Republicans. Democrats demand that government pay for personal welfare. Republicans believe in working for their own welfare.

If we don't have money enough to help family, friends and neighbors, just where will we find the $150,000 it costs for wages, benefits and office space to hire a social worker to administer non-existent funds?

Sandy, UT

There has never been a better demonstration of "privilege" than has been posted here this morning. Point, Welfare from the 80's is non-existent. Welfare lifestyle is a myth. Reagan's stereotype of welfare mom's was a myth and a lie. Point, the state administers aid to the poor. Who is the state? Government is those friends, neighbors and family members that Mr Richards feels so adamantly about. We have SNAP, welfare, Medicaid because those non official friends, neighbors and family members don't help. It is that simple. Taxes to support the disadvantaged is nothing more than you and Mr Richards paying your share to assist these neighbors needing help and despite your attitudes, Utah has more than it's share. It's that simple. If you think that your churches, whichever they may be are covering the needs you are sadly underestimating the problem. "Privilege is when you think something is not a problem because it's not a problem to you personally."

clearfield, UT


Don't worry, the way things seem to be going is toward a single payer system. As it is, when anyone get medicade, medicare, Obamacare, ect. it is all government money, and therefore, in practice, a single payer system. Single payer systems are fine for those who don't have any other means. Just don't ruin the private payer health system by requiring everyone to be forced onto a single payer (read government) health system. That is what we opponents of ACA are worried about.

As for a welfare system. Well, I'm going to have to shamelessly wave the LDS flag on this. They generally require something back from anyone receiving assistance, unless the persons are not physically capable of giving such. Remember, Workfare? That is largely how the LDS Church operates its system. And some states have put it into practice too. That way people will not let the "natural man" take over and enslave them. The natural man, by the way, is the basic human nature of being lazy. If you enable that human charactistic, you end up with the welfare queen, or king. God knows better, and thus the LDS program works best.

Sandy, UT

Wow.. Mike Richards.... REALLY? you think that everyone just needs to count pennies and they could help their other families members?

One of the most pathetic comments I have ever heard is this one MIKE: "that they couldn't buy that new car or take that nice vacation.

Seriously mike as member of the LDS Church I am highly offended...

For you information Mike, My father never owned a new car, never went on a "Nice" vacation. Most of our vacations were camping because it was the least expensive thing to do back then. My also became the bread winner for his family at 17 years old, because his father passed away suddenly, he had to quit school in order to feed his mother and 5 siblings. So never finished school.

He married a women who had four children already, he worked 60hrs a week to support them. He made sure we were taken care of, but we never had extra. EVER!

I am highly offended that You Mike have dishonored the memory of a man who taught me more about being Christ like and helping others even though he was not a member of the LDS church.

Open Minded Mormon
Everett, 00

@Mike Richards --

Just curious,
How many "others" are you personally helping out?

And don't give me the old 'I WOULD do it, if the Government wasn't already taking from me and giving it to them" malarkey.

BTW -- Pretty tough words coming from someone who less than 2-3 years from being on "Welfare" himself.

Are you coming to be collecting Social Security, Medicare, etc.?
are your neighbors, friends and Family going to be there for you?

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah

According to the CATO Institute, the Federal Government has over 126 different welfare/anti-poverty programs. Federal welfare spending increased from $200 billion in 1976 to over $600 billion in 2009. Total welfare spending went from $250 billion in 1976 to over $950 billion in 2009. Annual spending per person in poverty went from $7,000 in 1976 to $20,000 in 2011 (adjusted to reflect 2011 dollars). Welfare spending went from 2% of GDP in 1965 to 6% in 2001. In 2010, with the poverty threshold for a family of three at $18,530, government spent $59,233 per family of three.

We still have people in poverty.

The system is not working.

There is no accountability. There is no expectation for self-sufficiency. There's only the clamour that some "rich REPUBLICAN" pay for it.

FDR, LBJ and Obama are wrong. Welfare is fueling the need for even more welfare.

Othello, WA

Exactly right Mike...as usual! I love it when the crowd who screams separation of church and state, and piously preaches to us about how conservatives can just keep their morals to themselves, but when it comes to themselves, they like to start quoting and interpreting scripture in order to impose their morals on the rest of us. Fascinating!

It really comes down to lifestyle choices. Families can help each other, if they really want to. Don't give us the lame excuse question about whether any of us are helping needy family members right now. That proves Nothing. Who is going to be satisfied with someone paying their rent and giving them a nutritious meal, when welfare offers so much more in the way of candy soda and cash to buy cable tv and cell phones?

Since so many cities are now moving towards the "livable" minimum wage, I think we might as well scrap the welfare system anyway. Social Security and Medicare are totally different arguments. Mike and all the rest of us have had portions of our paychecks confiscated every month just for the purpose of our future retirement. Why would we not take that money?

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