John Florez: Involve the poor in solving poverty

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  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    May 19, 2013 11:03 p.m.

    Maybe if folks like Mr. Richards spent less time writing on the Internet and more time working then they would have enough money to pay the bills.

    The truth is, many in this country don't have family and churches to give them handouts. Many must receive aid from the government. Which is fine. We are a first world country recovering from a deep recession brought on by failed conservative economic policies. We need to get back to smart capitalism where CEOs aren't paid 100x as much as the common worker. We need to get back to an America which didn't see the common worker as a natural resource to exploit. Lets get back to taxes making sense (why are middle class families paying a higher percentage than millionaires?) and a defense budget that is under control.

  • Twin Lights Louisville, KY
    May 19, 2013 1:27 p.m.

    Mike Richards,

    You are a fortunate man to have such family. I am glad they care for you.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    May 19, 2013 7:59 a.m.

    @One Old Man,

    From one old man to another, I live what I write about.

    For most of my life, I have been blessed to have had more work than I needed. For most of my life, I was able to help family and extended family when there was a financial need. For most of my life, I was able to be charitable to a church which helped those in need.

    Now, the tables have turned. I don't have enough work to pay the bills. My siblings, children, and my wife's family help us pay the bills. Every month, some angel sends a sizable check to help us out. Our bishop visits with us regularly to access our situation. We are grateful for his concern, but only in times of death and medical emergency have we accepted his assistance because the responsibility for my welfare rests first with me, then with family, and then with the Church. My welfare needs are not the responsibility of government.

    The lessons of life create strong families who care about and assist each other. Personal welfare is NOT the responsibility of government it is the responsibility of the individual and his family.

  • one old man Ogden, UT
    May 18, 2013 8:30 p.m.

    Mike's fantasy world must be a very nice place. Unless you get sick, lose a job, have a family emergency or other disaster.

    Then you just quietly die and don't bother anyone.

  • Twin Lights Louisville, KY
    May 18, 2013 5:57 p.m.

    Mike Richards,

    First, I am not sure FDR ever represented that govt. had all the answers. Even if he did, I certainly did not vote for him.

    I think your point about healthcare is overreaching. We do not have a single payer system. Those I know who work in private health insurance are thrilled with the idea of the new enrollees.

    I certainly agree that every job has value. But if it is subsidized (as it is for some programs) the worker is not, strictly speaking, being paid for the economic value of his work.

    Yes, govt. is limited to the authorized functions. But I think the process of authorization has proven more open than your prior posts indicate. And, that process has been approved by those authorized in the constitution to judge these things.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    May 18, 2013 11:46 a.m.

    Twin Lights,

    In the 80 years since FDR decided that goverment had all the answers, what has happened?

    Instead of 2% of our income going to SS, now the combined SS and Medicare is 15%. Instead of 0% going to the government for "health care" what is happening? 18% of our nation's wealth will be taken out of the hands of the citizens and put into the hands of politicians who will mix that money with the general fund - not into healthcare.

    Every job has a value. All that an honest man can expect is to be paid the value of the work that he performs. It is not his employer's fault if the employee is worth less than the employee desires. There is no "lock" keeping an employee chained to his employer. If he thinks he is worth more, he is free to get other employment.

    Government is limited to those duties that the citizens have authorized it to perform in the various Constitutions (Federal, State and City Charters). Anything not enumerated is left to the people

    Corrupt politicians tell ignorant citizens otherwise. That's why so many citizens look to government to solve their personal problems.

  • Twin Lights Louisville, KY
    May 18, 2013 10:15 a.m.

    Mike Richards,

    First, govt. does what we ask it to do as its board of overseers. It has the solutions we provide.

    Second, having exactly zero poor would not eliminate the need for govt.

    Yes, the poor need money. But neither in nor out of the church do we typically give the poor money directly. Rather, we provide goods and services for them. Periodically there are reform movements in govt. that try new programs or eliminate old ones to try to get people to not be reliant. We try that at church too. Though we have more success in the latter, we are never fully successful. Why? Because poverty is complex. It is the result of poor training and habits, inadequate family supports, limited opportunities, mental or physical illnesses, etc. (the list goes on).

    Yes, a job is a GREAT way to solve the problem for those who can and should work. Economic growth is our best friend. But not all can work (unless you count programs where the job is subsidized).

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    May 18, 2013 7:43 a.m.

    What does government do? It protects itself. It guarantees itself that it will continue to receive funding. It guarantees that its job is too complex for the "average" citizen to ever understand.

    What do the poor need? By definition, poverty means a lack of money. The poor need money. If government is allowed to handle the problem, the poor will always be poor, because "fixing" the problem would eliminate the need for government, and government will never do anything that diminishes our "need" for government services.

    End poverty by hiring the poor. Hire them today to do what they can do today. Pay them today fair value for their work. Encourage them to become more valuable by gaining skills, not by adding their names to more and more government agencies. Let them have the honor of working their way out of poverty. Let them earn the self-respect that comes from working.

    Wringing our hands because government has no solution is an exercise in futility. If you want to help, hire someone. Provide a job. End dependence on government.

  • Hamath Omaha, NE
    May 18, 2013 5:48 a.m.

    Agreed! Bring them to the table. If the feds are going to be involved at all they need to find ways to get the people who are dealing with the problems involved in the solution. And make the solutions apply at more local levels only will be even better because then those who work hard with the gov't to solve it will be rewarded more and this will give good examples and good ideas to those areas that aren't working out as well.