Mary Barker: The real 'Hunger Games' — America's skewed welfare state


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  • TheProudDuck Newport Beach, CA
    Aug. 25, 2014 5:05 p.m.

    Regarding those 70-90% income tax rates that class warriors salivate over: NOBODY PAID THEM.

    First, they started at the inflation-adjusted level of about $2.5 million AGI. Second (and more importantly), the pre-1986 deduction and depreciation rules were much more relaxed. The effective tax rate paid by the highest income earners was below 40% -- basically right about where it is now. And if you had a good accountant, it was lower.

  • TheProudDuck Newport Beach, CA
    Aug. 25, 2014 4:59 p.m.

    Ah, but you can't consider payroll taxes without also counting the benefits that the payroll taxes buy you. When you consider both sides of the equation (as, to be consistent, you must), low-income earners pay negative payroll tax -- they ultimately get more out of the system than they pay in. With people who earn more, the return on their payroll-tax "investment" is negative, because part of their contributions is redistributed to finance those earning less.

    This is not a comment on whether this is a good or bad way to run things -- it's just to point out that the essay does not tell the full story. The writer should, and probably does, know better.

    Aug. 23, 2014 4:50 a.m.

    Creating a system in which the poor rely on government handouts to survive isn't equivalent to giving them energy juice - it's giving them poison.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Aug. 22, 2014 12:07 p.m.

    Provo, UT
    LDS Liberal: I recommend you read our LDS leader's frequent and long running remarks on the evils-yes, evils-- of the government dole.


    I recommned you read our LDS leader's Bishops's Handbook.

    Bishops are to encourge or suggest the use of "Government provided social services".

    Are you saying the LDS Bishop's Handbook is advocating the use of "evil"?

  • Vanceone Provo, UT
    Aug. 22, 2014 11:37 a.m.

    LDS Liberal: I recommend you read our LDS leader's frequent and long running remarks on the evils-yes, evils-- of the government dole. Try reading the welfare session of conference in, I believe, Oct 79. Then ask yourself how anyone could conceive of any good LDS member pushing for government welfare as a "good thing."

    The problem with governmental and liberal ideas of welfare is that: they use force to extract funds from the productive members of society and just hand them out willy nilly to everyone who lies on an application, with no requirements (after all, Obama's killed the great welfare compromise Clinton and the Republicans came up with in the 90s, that dramatically shrunk the welfare rolls.)
    Government dole is meant to make people dependent on government; thus removing the choice from the people and giving government power over them. It is soul crushing, deadening, and a form of slavery. You leftists love it. Why do you love an instrument of enslaving people to the government?

  • CBAX Provo, UT
    Aug. 22, 2014 10:56 a.m.

    Mister J,

    I hope you're not in the tech industry because it would be embarrassing if you think Utah is not growing is good jobs. We basically have silicon valley mini version starting up here.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Aug. 22, 2014 8:11 a.m.

    seattle, WA

    As a progressive and a proud liberal, I am for helping these people out when they do slip into poverty. Seems to me it is the "Christian" thing to do, help others. However, these radical conservatives and self identified "Christians" don't believe in society, through government which we elect, to do this.



    And unto Mormons or Christians or any other "religion" can claim 100% membership in America -- Government - of the people, for the people - will be the unbiased answer.

    As a "Christian" - Jesus never once said only a "Church" could provide charity for people, he only said to "DO IT", and left it up to us to figure out and determine HOW.

    We will be judge by our individual "intentions" of our hearts.

  • ordinaryfolks seattle, WA
    Aug. 22, 2014 7:28 a.m.

    Obviously, I don't live in the same America as many of the radical conservatives on this blog. The economy is better, the unemployment rate has been reduced and the stock market is really, really doing well.

    What I do hear from most of the radical conservatives is a lot of name calling and even more fear. It would seem that many of these posters are scared to death of drifting into poverty. As a progressive and a proud liberal, I am for helping these people out when they do slip into poverty. Seems to me it is the "Christian" thing to do, help others. However, these radical conservatives and self identified "Christians" don't believe in society, through government which we elect, to do this.

    I don't respond well to fear mongering or greed. Therefore, I read these posts by the radical conservatives and feel great pity for their fear and loathing. Very sad that the country has come to this. (and P.S., it is not Obama's fault - it is a self inflicted wound.)

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    Aug. 22, 2014 5:29 a.m.

    Re: "Robin Hood in reverse"

    What's really perverse is how liberals cynically conflate their failure to filch ever more in taxes from those that already pay all income taxes and most of the rest, as well.

    It's the equivalent of suggesting that Ferguson, MO looters gave an unfair advantage to the businesses they didn't loot -- one that liberals could only think to remedy by requiring all stores to be looted.

    Perverse, indeed.

  • RichardB Murray, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 9:59 p.m.

    LDS Liberal

    From the Holocaust on wiki.
    "On 29 January 1943, another decree ordered the deportation of all German Romani to Auschwitz."
    "The death toll was at least 130,000 of the nearly one million Romani in Nazi-controlled Europe."

    There is nothing there saying they were in the country illegally. The Romanians sent to the camps were German Romani, citizens of Germany. Or they were Romanians in Nazi controlled countries.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 4:51 p.m.

    Provo, UT

    Take the poor person; handicapped, cannot work, obviously needs some help. The Conservative view, and the Christian view...


    I try not to take offense --
    I grow every so sick and tired of guys like you constantly saying "Liberals" can NOT be Christians!

    FYI --
    Jesus happened to be a Liberal.
    The Pharisees were the Conservatives.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 4:46 p.m.

    Thid Barker
    Victor, ID
    America has THE highest corporate taxes in the world, period,
    10:03 a.m. Aug. 21, 2014

    [Wrong -- Have to call you on that lie Thid.
    Even right-wing Forbes magazine gives that honor to JAPAN.]


    Murray, UT

    Hitler never blamed illegal immigrants. He blamed legal Jewish immigrants as part of his plan to round them up. If you have reputable proof otherwise, I would like to see it.
    1:59 p.m. Aug. 21, 2014

    [Yes Hitler did -- Romanian Gypsies where illegal immigrants.
    along with Liberals, Communists, Gays, Abortion Doctors, the mentally and physically disabled to work, homeless, poor, etc. see "the Holocaust" on wiki]

  • Mikhail ALPINE, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 4:29 p.m.

    I am a conservative and agree that certain tax credits or subsidies are not well thought out. However, what Ms. Barker seems to be trying to say (truthfully, I can't say that I know what she is really trying to say - since it the facts and figures that are pushed out in the article seem to be random and arbitrary, and she offers no recommendation for a solution)that everything is skewed to support the wealthy. Might it not be argued that many of the tax policies are designed to increase production. Production is what produces jobs and income. Yes, there is too much government involvement in all of our lives - especially on a national level. Liberals seem to always believe that everything is unfair while ignoring their own pet projects that violate the very principles that they are arguing for. As a conservative, I believe that the local level of government best deals with these issues simply because it has the ability to respond to the individual needs of the community better than an abstract philosophy in some capital city far far away.

  • Vanceone Provo, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 4:15 p.m.

    Just remember, liberals are very generous.... with your money, not theirs.

    Take the poor person; handicapped, cannot work, obviously needs some help. The Conservative view, and the Christian view, would be that that person's family, if possible, take over. Failing that, the community: the person's church, or the local charities. Someone who knows the guy (or girl) and can respond to his or her needs. If necessary, the conservative will take the lasagna over.
    The liberal solution is to take money out of someone in Iowa's pocket by force, run it through a untold layers of bureaucracy, half being diverted to the local Union leader's slush fund, before the remaining 2 pennies are parceled out by some impenetrable formulae and you have to fill out a 200 page form in triplicate, then wait 8 months.
    And this, says the left, is the absolute best we can do; any attacks on all that fraud, waste, etc is mean spirited.
    Meanwhile, a liberal never dips into their own pocket to help out. That's what taxes are for, right? Compare and contrast Joe Biden charity with Mitt Romney's. Liberals spend your money, not theirs, on their priorities, not yours.

  • GaryO Virginia Beach, VA
    Aug. 21, 2014 3:50 p.m.

    Hey JoeCapitalist2 -

    "Conservatives are more than willing to state a lower limit on taxes (e.g. a 15% flat tax) that we are willing to let everyone pay."

    A flat tax is complete nonsense.

    Who (aside from the former USSR) has used or uses a flat tax?

    Want to know why America has never used a flat tax? . . . Because they don’t work.

    A graduated income tax however does work, especially one where the highest earners pay a HIGH percentage of income in taxes.

    The proof is in the pudding. You have no pudding to prove the worth of your flat tax, but merely a recipe that would be pure poison if implemented.

    On the other hand, the thriving economies, the low deficits, and the occasional budget surpluses coincident with a 70% and above high tax bracket demonstrates CLEARLY that a policy of high taxes for high earners has been good for this nation . . . Prior to the advent of greed-based Reaganism and the unworkable Trickle-down economics that still hold this nation back from achieving success.

    Yes, the proof is in the pudding.

    And high taxes for high earners creates a pretty tasty pudding for this nation and its citizens.


  • Redshirt1701 Deep Space 9, Ut
    Aug. 21, 2014 3:47 p.m.

    To "GaryO" actually, trickle down economics does not create more poverty because for the rich to get richer, they have to make money at their businesses. The more money their businesses make, the more they can grow and expand. The more businesses expand, the fewer available workers remain looking for jobs. When labor is scarce, the cost of labor rises. As the cost of labor rises, poverty decreases.

    You would understand that if you understood basic economics.

  • Wonder Provo, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 3:40 p.m.

    Daniel L -- It's a form of subsidy because the tax law said you owed the tax, and voila, now you don't. So if you believe in taxes and do not think our society can effectively run on good wishes and smiles, then yes, you owe your share of taxes. When you get a deduction for buying a house, you are paying less of your share than the person who couldn't afford a house. So yeah, it's a subsidy to those who are better off.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 3:39 p.m.

    @Vanceone "Are the poor still there? Yes, and there's more now than ever (Thanks Obama!). Democrats subsidize poverty, lawlessness, immorality, and, to be brutally honest: You leftists LOVE people being poor. Because they are dependent on you; right? You always, always scream "Vote Democrat because evil Republicans want you to starve!!!!!" Just like several have in this thread. "

    You right wingers look at the political system, but neglect the economic. Our is a politico economic system. American capital (corporations) has abandoned the United States in favor of investment in foreign nations, especially China. The decline of the American middle class is due to this process, aided and abetted by politicians at times, but the employers are the driving force.

    The problem is our current brand of capitalism in which corporations owe no national loyalty.

    And no I don't like people being poor. Nor do I want them to be dependent on me in any way. And I am not a liberal.

  • Wonder Provo, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 3:34 p.m.

    @Meadowman -- People have got to live somewhere. I'm not sure why giving a mortgage deduction helps the housing sector. If people weren't getting a subsidy to own a house they would still have to live somewhere, just maybe not with the taxpayers help.

  • Owen Heber City, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 3:18 p.m.

    @Thid and Vanceone. Christians know they "own" nothing; they are simply temporary stewards. They know it's possible to "rob" the poor by keeping more than they need. They know that the program is indeed that the poor will be lifted by the rich being humbled. They believe that this is all voluntary - and it is.

    I would ask: what is the problem with the government (us) asking you to do something you've already been commanded to do? The consequences for choosing to ignore either are jail or everlasting torment. Which is worse?

  • blackattack Orem, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 3:03 p.m.

    I hate to see when people vilify the poor and apply a broad label as "immoral, lazy, ignorant", etc. opportunities for learning, networking, and fair treatment are not even close to the levels of abundance that the middle and upper classes enjoy (which I am prob middle class). It's hard to get a job these days even with an advanced degree.they may have the ability to improve their situation but they start at the goal line and we start at touchback. We may still have the same goal but they are disadvantaged to begin with.

    It seems the ultimate fix would be the need for little government intervention and private charitable people who share their wealth. As we can see, we do t have that kind of society and it seems that government needs to intervene. The welfare system is not effective, but neither is corporate welfare bc it rarely trickles down to the lowest class.

  • Mister J Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 3:01 p.m.

    re: kiddsport

    "When was the last time you saw a liberal-run municipality result in anything but bankrupt?"

    Yet, its liberal areas (Boston, Silicon Valley, Seattle, & Austin (getting more liberal)) where a Lions share of the technological innovations occur.

    Whereas Utah is good for call centers, MLM's, & other shady financial service firms.

  • SCfan clearfield, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 2:35 p.m.

    OK libs. I've read from all of you over and over for years now that this economy, and now from some of you the huge debt, are all the responsibility of Bush, Reagan, and the Republicans. (funny that you seem to conviently forget that President Clinton came in there too.) So. Since our weak economy that Obama has presided over for going on 6 years is not his doing, it stands to reason that if this economy changes for the better in the next two years, it won't be Obamas doing either. We OK with that? You all continue to act as if Bush and the Republicans have been in power since Reagan, and only last Tuesday did Obama become President. If you will not finally admit that a President has to take responsibility for his presidency, especially when things are bad, then don't try to spike the football if things become good. If they do become good, well.......... It's Bushs fault.

  • Vanceone Provo, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 2:18 p.m.

    We've spent trillions on Democratic handouts to the poor; those trillions being stolen by government from the productive; ever since Johnsons "Great Society." And what have we got for spending those trillions? Are the poor still there? Yes, and there's more now than ever (Thanks Obama!). Democrats subsidize poverty, lawlessness, immorality, and, to be brutally honest: You leftists LOVE people being poor. Because they are dependent on you; right? You always, always scream "Vote Democrat because evil Republicans want you to starve!!!!!" Just like several have in this thread.

    Republicans want poor people to not be poor: by becoming self sufficient. By gaining a skill and becoming a productive citizen. Democrats want us all enslaved to them, so we vote for them because that's all we can do to survive. Republicans are "the party of the rich," they would prefer everyone to be rich. Democrats are the party of the poor, and they do their best to make everyone poor (except for the "elite Democrats" of course-- Obama and Hillary can't be expected to grovel in the mud like the rest of us poor plebs.

  • Daniel L. Murray, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 2:09 p.m.

    How does a conversation like this get reversed? That if the government doesn't take it from you, it becomes a form of subsidy? If this article is based on truth, then all take home income is subsidized by the government, simply because it was taken from you!

  • RichardB Murray, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 1:59 p.m.

    Open Minded Mormon

    Hitler never blamed illegal immigrants. He blamed legal Jewish immigrants as part of his plan to round them up. If you have reputable proof otherwise, I would like to see it.

  • illuminated St George, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 1:41 p.m.

    6 years of wealth redistribution from a President who was a scholar of Alinsky, 2 years of which controlled the House, Senate and the White House. The Democrats got -exactly- the leadership and polices they wanted. Yet, look at this article, it's still not enough. They're still complaining.

    This is insanity. Isn't 6 years of liberalism and wealth redistribution enough evidence to show that it doesn't work? No, apparently not. We "dumb Faux News fans" are just too brainwashed to understand.

  • JoeCapitalist2 Orem, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 1:37 p.m.

    GaryO: "Poor people who are Liberal...want a chance to climb out of poverty, and they know that "Conservative" Republican leadership will never let them have that opportunity."

    Most of the poor who are liberals do not want to "climb" out of poverty, they want to ride the elevator out of it in their easy chair. If you want to work for it, Republicans are more than willing to let you have that opportunity.

    "Your own stuff? Like the money that should be going to taxes? Ever heard of the social contract? So many "Conservatives" seem to believe that they owe NOTHING to the nation..."

    No conservative believes we owe NOTHING. We just object to the government getting a bigger piece of our labors (without doing any of the work or taking any of the risks) than we do.

    Conservatives are more than willing to state a lower limit on taxes (e.g. a 15% flat tax) that we are willing to let everyone pay. Liberals will never put an upper limit (e.g. 80%) that they are personally willing to pay along with all the others they expect to pay.

  • tabuno Clearfield, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 1:25 p.m.

    The reason I am a firm believer in being a Democrat is the belief that America needs to be fair place to all, not just to the wealthy. The majority of the Republican Party has been known as the preserver of the rich and powerful, preserving and making sure that corporations and businesses can make and keep their profits made by the worker and laborers. The Republican Party appears dedicated to maintain a two-class society and the freedoms of the elite. Instead of the French Revolution by the masses, America established a political system that entrenches the class system and avoid shifting power over to the majority of the people and only provides the appearance that the people have power and control over their government.

  • Bob01 Layton, Utah
    Aug. 21, 2014 1:23 p.m.


    To all the poor people - make sure you read Vanceone's comment to get an honest look at how conservatives view poor people. Nothing but, "weed smoking thugs on the street." (Direct quote from Vanceone). Wow, that's quite the judgement call there Vanceone.

    "Indolent & unworthy the beggar may be-but that is not your concern: It is better, said Joseph Smith, to feed 10 impostors than to run the risk of turning away one honest petition." -Hugh Nibley's Approaching Zion

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    Aug. 21, 2014 1:17 p.m.

    Provo, UT

    You complained, but did not suggest a single solution,
    Btw - Hitler was faced with a similar situation...

    Huge national debt from his countries previous war,
    a Hemorraging economy.
    Poverty, Homelessness, addictions,

    He blamed all his nations problems on the --
    poor, terminally ill,
    Illegal immigrants,
    Gays, Lesbians,

    So, what do you suggest?
    a similar situation,
    a similar "Final Solution"?

  • one old man Ogden, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 1:05 p.m.

    Karen R from Houston --

    Absolutely excellent. A thoughtful and well state comment that is right on the spot.

  • Z South Jordan, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 12:48 p.m.

    Congratulations, all of you who own a home, or who are fortunate enough to have put a little bit away in an IRA or a 401(k). The left now considers you to be a rich welfare sponge. You are a burden on society. Don't you feel ashamed for planning for your future? Don't worry, the state will take care of you. Stop thinking for yourself.

  • GaryO Virginia Beach, VA
    Aug. 21, 2014 12:41 p.m.

    Hey Redshirt - “Who wants trickle up poverty due to socialism?”

    Trickle up poverty comes from trickle down economics.

    In Trickle Down Economics, the wealthy are supposed to create jobs for the Middle Class and the poor. But they don’t. This nation has been going downhill ever since we started babying the rich.
    The wealthy get wealthier, and the poor and middle class get poorer.

    If you want to eliminate trickle up poverty, then we need to eliminate trickle down economics.
    Let’s tax the highest earners a LOT more . . . Like we did back in the days when this nation could actually pay its bills.

    We now know what works and what does not work.

    I’m advocating a simple policy:

    Let’s do what works.

  • Vanceone Provo, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 12:38 p.m.

    In the liberal view: You are poor, helpless, pitiful, incapable, and need the government to take care of you, wipe your nose, and powder your bum, but the second you start contributing to society, you are evil and the government has a solemn duty to seize all your proceeds from your labor and give it to people who will blow it on some weed.

    Nothing says charity like stealing someone's income and giving it to a bunch of thugs on the street who have no plans to ever work, and if you complain, you are a heartless racist wretch! And you can't be Christian if you don't agree that government theft of your property is necessary and what Jesus would have preached: that you owe everything to the all powerful government, and you should be grateful that Obama hasn't taken 100 % yet, but since you still have some, you are evil and should give it all to Barack now so he can give it to his peeps.

    Right liberals? That's the essential meaning of all of your arguments, as well as this article: that theft is great, as long as its the government stealing it.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 12:36 p.m.

    President Obama and President Snow of the Hunger Games - hard to tell them apart from an ideology standpoint.

  • Karen R. Houston, TX
    Aug. 21, 2014 12:33 p.m.

    @ IDC in Boise

    I wanted to add to your list of solutions:

    Make sure you're born with an adequate IQ - something above 110 is recommended. Below that you have a 50/50 chance of living in poverty.

    Also recommended is choosing white skin. Being white and male is an especially good choice, but being white, female, and smart will get you a long way these days, too. And don't forget to choose a healthy dose of ambition and physical attractiveness. They're really helpful in a competitive free-market system.

    Other suggestions:

    - Don't be born to substance-abusing parents or to a single parent without a high school education.
    - Don't be raised in a neighborhood where the schools are bad.
    - Make sure your dad doesn't leave the family, particularly if your mom isn't well educated.
    - Don't be born with a learning disability, a mental illness, or a physical disability.

    Overall, just don't choose to be born into poverty. You're chances of getting out won't be very good.

    We've got the data that backs this up and now you've been warned. Choose wisely or the only one you can blame is yourself.

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    Aug. 21, 2014 12:15 p.m.

    Deep Space 9, Ut
    It is nice to see that all of the liberals are supporting socialism once again.


    It's always nice to all the "conservatives" who rant daily and HATE Socialism,
    but won't think twice about taking Social Security, Medicare, and every other Social Programs they feel "entitled" too...

    I wish they had the intellectual honesty to just be HONEST.

  • weedeater Murray, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 12:11 p.m.

    I think many of the "conservatives" here are straining at the gnat of welfare to the poor, but swallowing (eww!) the camel of corporate incentives. Shame on you wolves in sheep's clothing who pray openly while secretly rejecting the homeless street preacher Jesus.

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    Aug. 21, 2014 12:10 p.m.

    Agreed --
    Prof. Barker has done it again.

    It's sad to see 'certain' parties cheer Corporate Welfare and their Billionaires,
    and deride PEOPLE who need welfare just to eat.

    Sort of that old Nephite sin of --
    worshipping the rich, loviing war, siding with the business of Gadianton's,
    while trampling and grinding the faces of the poor...

    Zoramites, and their Rameumpton [God blesses us, and made us better than others, ect.]
    seems to best describe what I see happening in here in Utah's Latter-Day Zarahemla...

    The Nephites were not destroyed for same-sex marriage, madical marijuana, or abortions --
    but they were destroyed for how they treated their poor, sick and elderly -- "the least of these"...

    Ironically, God uses the ignorant and the wicked to punish the Righteous, who SHOULD know better....

  • GaryO Virginia Beach, VA
    Aug. 21, 2014 12:04 p.m.

    Kiddsport -

    "When was the last time you saw a liberal-run municipality result in anything but bankrupt? "

    If you didn't get your "news" exclusively lying Right-Wing Propaganda mills, you'd have a much more realistic perspective.

    Plenty of "liberal-run municipalities" do just fine.

    . . . Austin, San Francisco, Boston, Hartford, etc.

    Besides, you're putting the cart before the horse.

    Poor people who are Liberal . . . Are NOT poor because they're Liberal, they are Liberal because they want a chance to climb out of poverty, and they know that "Conservative" Republican leadership will never let them have that opportunity.

    Hey JTB -

    "We please stop calling it a government "handout" when it benevolently decides to let you keep more of your own stuff?"

    Your own stuff? . . . Like the money that should be going to taxes?

    Ever heard of the social contract?

    So many "Conservatives" seem to believe that they owe NOTHING to the nation that created the environment within which they can succeed.

    JFK said "Ask not what your country can do for you. Ask what you can do for your country."

    But all too many self-described Patriotic Conservatives do just the OPPOSITE.

  • Redshirt1701 Deep Space 9, Ut
    Aug. 21, 2014 11:45 a.m.

    It is nice to see that all of the liberals are supporting socialism once again.

    Lets look at the welfare. It is intended to be a "safety net". What is a safety net? If you work high above the ground a safety net is there to prevent you from dying. It is not there to help you rebound and return to your original position. The current US welfare system does more than just prevent death, it provides excessive benefits and allows the poor to live better than many in the middleclass.

    Next, tax deductions are not welfare for the rich. Welfare is money given by the government. If I pay $10 less in taxes because of a tax break I did not get welfare, I kept more of my money. The government does not own my money.

    I wish Mary had the intellectual honesty to explain what she means by the gap between the poor and the rich. The fact is that we are all different. Some people will climb the mountain faster than others. Do we slow down the more athletic so that we can all cross the finish line together? Who wants trickle up poverty due to socialism?

  • JoeCapitalist2 Orem, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 11:36 a.m.

    There is a retail tool that has been used for decades. Inflate the suggested retail price of something, offer a big discount off that inflated price, and thus convince the customer that they "saved" a bunch of money. It is common in all those infomercials on TV. Try to sell someone a $5 trinket for $20 (plus outrageous postage and handling charges) and tell them they are getting a "$50 value" for only 20 bucks.

    The same thing is being peddled by progressives with the tax code. Convince everyone that 70%+ of a rich person's income is what the tax should be, offer discounts off that high tax for specific behaviors (buying a house, saving a 401(k), donating to charity, etc.), and then tell everyone how much all those wealthy people are on the government dole because their effective tax rate is less than what it "should be".

    Everyone knows Mitt Romney must be some kind of tax cheat even though he paid millions in taxes and followed all the tax laws because he somehow didn't pay enough.

  • happy2bhere clearfield, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 11:35 a.m.


    I think you are on to something. I also think they call it the "Flat Tax".


    What was it that Shakespear said. Something about a rose by any other name is still a rose. OK, call it whatever you want. An economic system by any other name........

  • Meadowman Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 11:20 a.m.

    The tax deduction for mortgage interest is an effort to stimulate the housing sector of our economy, which has historically been a significant contributor to our local and national Gross Domestic Production or Product. If you think about all the labor and material that goes into the average home, like copper wire, piping, carpet, paint, lumber, brick, roof shingles, appliances, furnaces, etc., there are thousands of people who are employed to help build that home. The interest deduction for taxes has at least a 10 times multiplier effect on the economy. To look at it as simply a government handout to the homeowner is very shortsighted and evidence of a lack of understanding of basic economic principals. Tax incentives and deductions can be used by our representatives in government to stimulate targeted sectors of our economy to benefit all of us, not just the recipients of the tax deduction. To focus only on the recipients and pit them against each other with labels of "rich" and "poor" is class warfare and persecution and ignores the multiplying benefit of the deduction to the economy, which is its principal intent, not some unfair distribution of wealth to the rich.

  • David Centerville, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 11:18 a.m.

    So with the richest 10% paying a large majority of the overall taxes, this is still not enough, nor acceptable.

    Well, what is acceptable? Does the Left want the rich to pay all of the taxes, receive no incentives to invest and risk to create, while spending more on income redistribution to the poor?

    Many of the poor are honest, hard working, and simply need time to climb the ladder. My wife and I, when first married, could not afford a car. We walked or rode bicycles to get around. We struggled for years living on tight budgets. Obama has certainly made things tough with his economy, but we are just now starting to have a little to invest and hope to have something for retirement...someday.

    But there are others among the poor who are doing drugs, not seeking work, and abusing the system.

    Its not as simple as Mary Barker would like us to believe, nor the extreme Right. There must be balance, discipline, and principle involved in creating, administering, and maintaining a safety net. I don't feel we have that in the US. Our welfare system is very poorly administered.

  • Invisible Hand Provo, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 11:12 a.m.

    All talk about tax rates is misleading unless we talk about EFFECTIVE tax rates. Otherwise we are talking past each other, and comparing apples to oranges.

    As a conservative I see good points and common ground in this article. Would it be possible for reasonable people from right and left to agree on cuts in the tax rates paired with elimination of deductions? If we could just get special interests out of the equation this seems like a no-brainer.

  • JTB Tracy, CA
    Aug. 21, 2014 11:06 a.m.

    Can we please stop calling it a government "handout" when it benevolently decides to let you keep more of your own stuff? I guess the guy who breaks into your home gives you a "handout" when he can't carry away your TV. Basically the author is sad that the government is not taking away more of my income to give to someone who isn't working. If you really want to fix the imbalance, then give the poor federal income tax breaks too (if they were paying any taxes, that is).

  • kiddsport Fairview, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 10:59 a.m.

    @Kent DeForest,
    When was the last time you saw a liberal-run municipality result in anything but bankrupt? Detroit? Stockton, CA? San Bernardino? Chicago? Well, Chicago is not there yet but that's where thiey're headed. Far from "supply-side nonsense," those cities refused to educate themselves on the impact of non-supply-side lunacy.

    Corporations were originally chartered to serve public interests? Which socialist history teacher did you have? If you have a reference for that claim, I would certainly like to see it.

  • a_voice_of_reason Woods Cross, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 10:45 a.m.

    While I agree with most of the authors larger points I believe she is overreaching in some ways. For example, while I agree that the mortgage interest deduction simply inflates home prices for the real estate industry and should go away, she says that this tax break for the middle-class and wealthy is paid for by taxpayers that can't afford a home. That's not true - those lower-income families aren't paying income taxes. She also says that, including payroll taxes, the top earners and bottom earners' real tax rates are close. That's true due to capital gains rates being the majority of the top earners taxes (which I think should go away), but she fails to point out that the liberal war on wealth (that raised the top income tax rate just a few years ago) has caused higher taxes on the middle class, and particularly the upper middle class who own small businesses. They are paying the highest rates of all! Our system doesn't attack the poor. It's not the rich robbing the poor, it's the politicians robbing the middle class to pay off the rich and the poor.

  • Thid Barker Victor, ID
    Aug. 21, 2014 10:43 a.m.

    Kent. With all due respect, I disagree with you about the causes of poverty as I state above. I say that because I am experienced in witnessing poverty causes. I will agree that good paying jobs are needed but the vast majority of jobs are created by the private sector (corporations and companies). If we continue to punish, over tax and over regulate the private sector, I promise you we will see less jobs and more "Made in China" on the labels of everything we need! There is a very conservative economic idea that has built this country and made it the economic wonder of the world, at least it used to be until liberals decided income redistribution was better! The incentive to innovate, take economic risks, produce and succeed is the reasonable chance of profitability. Take away that incentive and nothing gets invented, produced and poverty takes its place! Detroit is a good example!

  • kiddsport Fairview, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 10:40 a.m.

    Mary Barker, The Real Maverick, SCR, et al, all start from the premise that government creates wealth and "distributes" it through tax breaks. Wrong! Taxes are monies that have been taken from somebody who actually created economic activity. In addition, corporations don't pay taxes; their customers pay those taxes through higher prices. Why is that so hard to understand. Corporate welfare? You might as well say customer welfare because allowing a corporation to keep more of their profits permits them to be more successful in this ever-increasingly global competition.

    Individuals create wealth by making sacrifices, taking risks, working hard, working long, never giving up, oh, and a few are crooks or just highly talented, but most are just hard workers.

    The parallel to "Hunger Games" is interesting because it seems to me if we could just allow our children to go to school anywhere we as parents chose, they would be just as successful as those communities that raised their children to be "prepared" for the "games." These same people who clamor for more for the poor are the last in line to allow school choice. Quite a paradox, wouldn'tyou say?

  • RichardB Murray, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 10:26 a.m.

    Better wages would help. In the early 1960s, Cesar Chavez successfully prodded then President John Kennedy to curb the “Bracero” guest-worker program, which allowed farms to hire low cost Mexican immigrants instead of American farmworkers. The program was killed by Congress in 1963.

    The loss of foreign workers forced farms and food companies to triple the wages paid to American field workers. The wages rose from $1.77 per hour in 1965, to $5.63 in 1978. That’s equivalent to $20.27 per hour in 2014, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Since then, farmworkers’ wages has fallen after inflation, amid a huge wage of legal and illegal immigration.

    To counter this, legal immigration was doubled, and our borders became porous. Letting business set our immigration policies has caused much of the problem with surplus labor. It's not a one fix solution, but better immigration management is needed.

  • Kent C. DeForrest Provo, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 10:17 a.m.


    Please remember that corporations are chartered by government, by the people, and originally in America they were chartered to serve public interests, not just to generate private wealth. It's easy and simplistic to tell people to get an education, get a job, stop taking drugs, etc. But when there are not enough decent jobs in this country to provide all these people with sufficient income to pull them out of poverty, we must recognize that poverty is a systemic problem, and the system conservatives have concocted over the past 30 years (through supply-side nonsense) can never solve our societal problems. We need to wake up and understand things at a deeper, more systemic level. All the Republican bromides we've been hearing over the past decade are an embarrassment to the great conservative thinkers of the past (prior to Reagan's hijacking of the movement). I can't remember the last time I saw a conservative economic idea that actually held water.

  • Thid Barker Victor, ID
    Aug. 21, 2014 10:03 a.m.

    @ Ordinaryfolks. If you don't like corporations, don't do business with them, no one is forcing you! That's right, teach them "evil" corporations a lesson! Produce all your own food, clothing, medicines, energy and everything else you need to stay alive! Corporations only exist if they can invent and produce goods and services for a competitive price that people CHOOSE to purchase to improve their lives. Your term "corporate welfare" is bogus because America has THE highest corporate taxes in the world, period, and heaven help them if they make a profit with which they can hire more people, invent new products and make life better for millions of people! You are biting the hand that feeds, clothes you and keeps you alive! How silly is that?

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    Aug. 21, 2014 9:56 a.m.

    FT "Had America elected John McCain instead of BO the debt would have still balloned"

    Exactly correct. If one looks at Obamas first year, the debt climbed the most. And that was based on a budget set prior to his election.

    Look at even the Heritage Foundation website (google heritage foundation mandatory spending) for confirmation. The debt increase under Obama is primarily based on two things.

    Revenues are down per the great recession
    Mandatory spending is up, primarily because of the great recession.

    These two things would have occurred under whoever was president.

    SS, Medicare and Defense. These are the drivers. I have not seen the GOP propose cuts to Medicare or SS but they have advocated for an increase in Defense spending.

    We can either look at the real issues, or bury our head in the sand and play partisan politics.

  • JoeCapitalist2 Orem, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 9:52 a.m.

    Like many liberals, Mary Barker wants to define any tax breaks given to wealthy individuals as public welfare. It doesn't matter if you pay $10 million in taxes, if you got a $1000 home mortgage deduction then you are some kind of welfare queen!

    Those who are on "welfare" are those who contribute less to the government than they receive in benefits. Those who pay way more than their share are not on welfare even if they were able to deduct a few things from their taxes, collect some unemployment, or claim their children as dependents.

    Liberals want to define you as a welfare recipient if they think you should have paid a ton of taxes and you just paid slightly less than a ton. I guess for some people, if you give anything less than 100% of your income to the government, you must be on welfare (if you are rich).

  • ordinaryfolks seattle, WA
    Aug. 21, 2014 9:41 a.m.

    Hey Thid Baker

    How many trillions have been transferred to the already wealthy and to corporate America? If you are going to talk about sloth and greed, you should mention these folks as well.

    Or is your righteous indignation only used to insult poor folks?

  • FT salt lake city, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 9:25 a.m.

    Had America elected John McCain instead of BO the debt would have still balloned and one can argue probably had been worse. Revenue and debts are a result of things that have happened prior to (tax laws, economic reform, etc.). It seems conservatives are furious that the policies BO initiated pulled us back from a forecasted depression and reversed the debt course that the GOP and Bush put our country on.

  • artmom DENVER, CO
    Aug. 21, 2014 9:25 a.m.

    Mary Barker's article seems to assume that everyone's salary belongs to the government, and when the government allows people to keep more of their earnings by giving them tax breaks; it is the same as giving them government handouts. Giving tax breaks to people to encourage them to engage in desirable behavior such as buying a house or saving for retirement is not giving them handouts.

    It is very important for people to save for their own retirement. Social Security is in deep trouble, and will not be able to support all the people who will be soon retiring.

    Owning a home is good for a family, and should be encouraged. I wonder why Ms. Barker thinks that the mortgage interest deduction is causing people to buy luxurious homes rather than ordinary homes. I doubt this is the case. Of course some people will always spend more than they should, but people should be allowed to make their own decisions.

    Of course poor people need help, but not permanent welfare. I've known several families who live on welfare and don't have any desire to work; it is a very sad situation - especially for their children.

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    Aug. 21, 2014 9:18 a.m.

    I am still amazed that so many think the solution is to just elect the farthest right of the right.

    Like Louis Gohmert.

    SiriusXM’s “The Wilkow Majority,” Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) argued, “if you’re Commander-in-Chief you can’t be listening to Muslim brother advise on when it’s time to stop destroying Muslim brothers.”

    Or Michell Bachman -

    Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) to demand that the Inspectors General of four government agencies investigate “deep penetration” by the Muslim Brotherhood in the U.S. government.

    The GOP has some good ideas and ideology. We need balance. Unfortunately, they celebrate those who cloud logic and reason. You cant elevate people like this and expect reasonable Americans to want you to lead the nation.

  • Pendergast Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 9:11 a.m.

    Blue & Paul Timothy Gibbs (2nd Paragraph) have knocked it out of the park. Kudos!

  • Liberal Ted Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 9:03 a.m.

    Paul Timothy Gibbs

    Taylorsville, UT

    Thanks for trying to hint that the LDS population doesn't follow the Saviour by following your ideology.

    I disagree that the Saviours idea to help the poor, is to plunder the rich and hand it out to the poor. If that was the way, why didn't he do it when he was here? Instead he visited the poor, he blessed them, he taught them correct principles, he taught them a higher law. He also visited the rich, the powerful, the lawyer, the ruler etc. After all His teachings were for everyone.

    I would like to know what do you do to help the poor? Do you volunteer? Donate? Do you help kids at school to learn to read and write?

    The idea of using government to strip someone of their wealth, and think that they will equitably redistribute it is ridiculous. They tried with Social Security and that is a failure. They tried with obamacare and that's a failure. They tried with tax breaks and that's a failure. Do you really think it's going to work this time? The issue lies within each individual. What are you going todo tohelp?

  • DN Subscriber Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 9:01 a.m.

    The trouble with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money to spend.

    The basic premises of this article are incredibly flawed, unless you are a socialist or communist.

    109 million Americans are drawing means tested welfare benefits from the government, and that number is increasing. 103 million Americans hold actual paying jobs, and that number is decreasing. How much longer can we rob the rich and give to the poor? Why shoudl anyone bother working if their is no benefit to their hard work?

    Contrary to the article, if Susan earns $1 million this year from wages or interest, she will end up with about half of that amount after taxes.
    If Sam earns $500 this year from pitiful wages from miserly companies, he wile end up with many times that amount after earned income tax credits paid back, welfare cash, food stamps, public housing etc. How is this unfair to Sam but a sweet deal for Susan?

    When liberals take a vow of poverty and give all of their earnings to the poor instead of coveting the earnings of the dwindling number of working Americans I will take their recommendations seriously, but not until then.

  • ECR Burke, VA
    Aug. 21, 2014 9:00 a.m.

    Congratulations to happy2bhere as the first to raise the inevitable banner of Communism or Socialism. Are they the only alternatives to capitalism? And for happy and Thid BArker, get out of the house and see more of the world than the neighborhood you live in. Poverty is a complex issue that can't be defined by a few simple solutions (get a job, stay off drugs, etc. etc. etc.)

    And finally, as the essay by Ms. Barker points out, the poor are NOT the major recipients of "welfare" in our country. We've just chosen to accept other names for it - subsidies, mortgage deductions etc, etc, etc. HONESTY! That's all that's being asked for in this essay and failing that, we have no way to solve the issue.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 8:59 a.m.

    Never forget that the United States was built on the foundation of slavery. Slavery literally built the foundation of American capitalism. Our class system is a modification of the slave system. In looking to the future we have to figure out some new ways to do things. Perhaps small "s" socialism, like with cooperatives, can be a way.

    Regardless if what type of socialism we head for, socialism of some brand is on the way. Our present system is starkly unfair and unsustainable.

  • IDC Boise, ID
    Aug. 21, 2014 8:51 a.m.

    The ultra wealthy may get away with stuff but small business owners and the middle class who are successful get hammered. Deductions mean I might pay a few dollars less in taxes but my tax burden is still far larger. 47% of people pay no net tax. At the same time, deductions for successful small business are being stripped away. Quit victimizing our great country.

    Study hard, delay gratification, save money, study smart, and you can succeed in America. Dump internet, cable, cell phone unless you are making enough to save. Stay away from drugs and alcohol, don't have sex before marriage and for sure don't have kids out of wedlock. Go to bed early and work hard no matter how bad your job is now. Read good books and spend less time watching tv, video games, etc. That is the solution, not more handouts.

  • KDave Moab, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 8:45 a.m.

    It is ironic that demograficaly those that voted for Obama (twice) have found their wages lower and unemployment higher. While the rich have gotten richer. Yet, I am sure they will continue to vote for more of the same. Speaks volumes.

  • Michael Matthews Omaha, NE
    Aug. 21, 2014 8:44 a.m.

    She missed my favorite. Probably because it doesn't exactly fit her premise. But why on earth does the child tax credit make sense? I've got six kids, a large family. Why do my bachelor neighbors have to pay extra for me? It's just Republican redistribution and makes as much sense as it does for me to pay for my other neighbor who's on welfare to play video games all day (Democratic redistribution).

    Both parties play the system to get the votes they want/need by dangling these carrots out at us and when we vote with our pocketbooks we are failing ourselves ultimately.

    Aug. 21, 2014 8:40 a.m.

    Flat Tax or National Sales Tax. Take your pick. Get taxed on what you spend not what you earn.

    Don't like that - we then try this - cut the Government down - a lot.

    Still don't like it? Well then just wait a little longer because things cannot stay this way forever.

    Economic revolutions come because the systems get over burdened.

    We should have switched to the metric system back in the 70's and the flat or sales tax in the 90's when we had the chance.

  • Blue Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 8:33 a.m.

    "What does this author propose to do to solve the problem?"

    1) Overturn Citizens United. Corporations are _not_ people, and money is _not_ speech.

    2) Campaign finance reform. Require complete transparency for _all_ contributions to political campaigns.

    3) Tax reform. Level the playing field. Eliminate specialized tax deductions and loopholes that exist solely to benefit the people who hired the lobbyists to write the tax laws and then buy the legislators to pass them.

    4) End corporate welfare. It makes no sense that for-profit corporations receive billions of dollars in public assistance and then employ armies of lawyers and accountants to make sure they pay little or no taxes.

    That's a start.

  • Thid Barker Victor, ID
    Aug. 21, 2014 8:32 a.m.

    Develop some meaningful job skills, stay off drugs and alcohol, don't have children out of wedlock, go to work everyday (even two jobs if necessary) and don't spend more than your income! Poverty problem solved! It works every time! These are the reason millions of Americans are not poor and those who don't do these things usually are poor!

  • happy2bhere clearfield, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 8:30 a.m.

    So much is wrong in the logic, reasoning, and analysis in this piece. However, it would take much more than 200 words to sort it out. Bottom line is this. In a capitalistic economy, it is necessary for there to be rich, middle, and poor. Americas poor are much richer than the poor of most any other country. And that is because the rich are much richer than the rich of other countries. And as a result we have a huge bell curved middle class that in and of itself has three degrees, upper middle, middle middle, and lower middle. Our system has worked pretty well for most people. Want to trade it for socialism? Communism? That kind of system would only bring everyone down, except for the elite wealthy. Why is it that liberals seem to believe that social justice is achieved not by bringing people up to their potential, but by lowering others down who have succeeded in our system?

  • 65TossPowerTrap Salmon, ID
    Aug. 21, 2014 8:28 a.m.

    I agree with Liberal Ted - he needs to pay more taxes.

  • WRK Riverton, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 8:28 a.m.

    As stated here by a few, I believe in charity. But forced charity, no matter how you look at it is communism, and that is not what the Savior taught.

  • Thid Barker Victor, ID
    Aug. 21, 2014 8:17 a.m.

    Any rational, intelligent person would know by now that the government's transfer of more than $20 trillion to solve poverty has not worked! So what do liberals want to do? Transfer more money and create more dependency which means more poverty! The solution to poverty will NEVER come from government welfare programs that punishes success and rewards and enables idleness, poor personal choices and addictions! Develop some job skills, stay off drugs and booze, work hard and don't have kids out of wedlock! Those are the real solutions to poverty!

  • E Sam Provo, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 8:05 a.m.

    Outstanding article. Mary Barker is a treasure. Let's actually help people who need it. A
    And while we're at it, let's be done with the myth of welfare dependency. It's not actually a problem.

  • ordinaryfolks seattle, WA
    Aug. 21, 2014 8:04 a.m.

    I don't know when, but one day the majority of Americans will wake up and discover the inequities that have been built into our tax and governmental aid systems are engineered to help the already comfortable.

    The cries of woe and worry from the Tea Party Republicans aside, the free market system in theory benefits no one in particular and burdens everyone in general. However, when our politicians (both left and right) put into place policies that excessively burden one group over another, we have altered the math of free market capitalism. The winners in this goody game are the corporations (tax breaks) and the wealthy (enough said, they don't usually end up at a food bank). The losers in this redistributionist game are the already poor and struggling.

    Follow the real money. It is so easy to distort the argument that the poor couple down the road get a couple of hundred bucks a month to assist them in their life's struggle for decency. The billions accrue to corporate America and the mega wealthy. Tea Party distractions are a complete ruse.

    Aug. 21, 2014 7:46 a.m.

    OK, the rich are evil and need to be brought down, I get it. What does this author propose to do to solve the problem?

  • Paul Timothy Gibbs Taylorsville, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 7:31 a.m.

    Our society is stacked against the poor, and we do our best to marginalize and avoid helping them, even creating the absurd notion of "class warfare" against the rich to someone claim they are the ones who are victimized.

    It breaks my heart to see how common this mean-spirited attack on the poor is in Utah, where so many of us belong to a religion that teaches us to love and care for our fellow children of God. We need to stop being so considered about following conservative ideology and more concerened about following the teachings of the Savior. They are decidely not one and the same.

  • ECR Burke, VA
    Aug. 21, 2014 7:29 a.m.

    Thank you, Ms. Barker, for succinctly outlining the fallacies so often trumpeted in our daily dose of political polemics vilifying the poor people of the nation. It will only be when we honestly discuss the facts, as you have done here, that we can find a common ground that will benefit the nation as a whole, rather than enrich a chosen few who don't really need the help.

    This year's federal deficit is expected to be $583.0B, the lowest amount in the Obama years, and yet there is so much more that could be done, but cutting welfare benefits for the poorest people in the country is not the answer. Whether it is a reduction in the spending for new weapons of war or the tax subsidies for private companies already making incredible profits there is room to cut.

    "But cutting those expenditures would cause jobs losses in the private sector!" you say. Yes they will, and so let's admit that government spending impacts the well being of much of the private sector. But our war on poverty should not be a war on poor people.

  • Liberal Ted Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 7:09 a.m.

    People like to use the word "diversity", it's one of the key buzzwords especially among liberals and democrats. Yet their myopic vision for the nation is "green energy". It's the perfect utopian dream. Endless power supply, limited emissions and pollution. But, that can only create so many jobs. During the past 6 years, more jobs have fled this nation and went overseas. Jobs that at one time, an employee could be trained on site. Overtime gain a pension, middle class wages, health care and provide for his/her family. We no longer manufacture as we once did. We have entire cities that are crumbling and wasting away.

    What is the solution? Another $2 Trillion of debt stimulus? Advance degrees for everyone?

    Maybe we need to look at why companies don't want to do business here. Wages are down when supply of labor is up, maybe we look at immigration. Our national debt drives down the value of the dollar and increases our interest rates. Maybe balancing the budget and paying off the debt is needed (it's a spending problem and not a revenue problemiethis year record tax revenue

  • Liberal Ted Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 7:00 a.m.

    We don't need more welfare. We need jobs. Something our current regime has claimed he's fixing, but, instead has run our national debt up $9 Trillion and made the rich richer and poor poorer. Great job baroke.

    Giving handouts to the bottom quintile, doesn't help them move up. The assumption is, you give them their "magic juice" and they use the resource wisely to get ahead. In reality, most of these people at the bottom become dependent on the welfare. You try and wean them off and it's devastating to them. We just exacerbate the problem. They live off of the system, have children and teach them this is the way to do it.

    The real question is how do you raise someone up, without making them dependent on you? Will bad mouthing rich people solve the problem? Historically, I am going to say no. Generation after generation of class warfare, stealing from the wealthy/stealing from the poor indicates that has never solved the problem. Obama thinks if everyone has a degree then the problem is solved. He fails to consider the supply side of economics. Too much supply and low demand, decreases wages.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    Aug. 21, 2014 6:25 a.m.

    Excellent article! Bravo!

    What we have today indeed is Robin Hood, in reverse. Yet, the right seems perfectly fine with it. They call
    handouts to the rich and big businesses, incentives. They call handouts to everyone else, welfare/handouts. This has led to our economic ruin. They are the result of of decades of a failed economic policy promoted by an actor.
    Yet, the righties refuse to recognize it's failure.

    This stuff happens here in Utah. Just look at the prison. Developers don't want to pay for the prison relocation. So they're going to force the public to pay for it while they reap it's rewards. Socialize the costs, privatize the profits.