Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Blaming the Poor

The new fad among the GOP seems to be blaming the poor for their own problems and being unemployed. Did I say new? I meant newly redundant. This is a tactic used many many times by conservatives, and it's interesting because of how they are able to attack the poor and still secure the poor vote.

How do they do that? By telling the poor people that listen to them that they're talking about other poor people. It's like saying "I think that we should tax people who drive hybrids more" to a group of people who drive hybrids, then saying "you're not the problem, other hybrid drivers are the problem." Apparently, this strategy works for the GOP, though I can't understand how people can fall for it.

The poor have a hard time in America and around the world. The GOP has not really helped, as they tend to target the programs that most benefit the poor. Then, you have people like Cain who are saying it's the poor people's own fault for being that way. Yet, the poor who vote for them seem to think that the GOPers are talking about different poor people. They believe the GOP are talking about some huge group of poor people who don't work, don't want to work, and just live off the system.

The fact is, that is a minority of all the poor in this country, and many of them fell into that trap due to unemployment or disability. There are some who exist solely on government aid, and that trend gets passed on to their children, but it's not a pervasive problem. Even if it was, the solution is not to force all of the poor to suffer in order to constrict the money flowing to that group.

Here's the problem with that solution. There is no support for the majority of the poor who want to work and just can't find a job (not their fault, but the fault of business). When the GOP cuts social programs, reduces unemployment benefits, or slashes medicare, medicaid, and social security in the name of starving societie's leaches, they don't mention that they're hacking of an arm to get rid of a mosquito.

A solution to this problem is not apparent, that's for sure. How do you deny services to one while supplying them to another? How do you create legislation that supports the working and unemployed poor while not supporting those who've never worked, even if there are only a handful compared to our population? The only thing I can think of is to put that power in the hands of the state, who have more flexibility with how they give out money and may be better able to screen individuals for benefits than the federal government.

One thing is certain: the poor should not be supporting a party that tells them they plan to slash benefits for the poor. The poor should not vote for someone who says they are the only ones to blame for their economic difficulty. It is not the fault of the poor, but the fault of this system that allows people to be left behind and does not provide support for economic growth and personal wealth.

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