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Food Stamps: A Rant.


zoony

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So I'm grocery shopping last week with the family, minding my own business. I look up just in time to snatch my 4 year old from the jaws of death as a 300 lbs woman in a rascal scooter (store provided, of course) barrelled down the bread aisle at 20 mph. I didn't say anything to her out of respect for my kids being in ear shot, whatever.

So I'm going to check out, and sure enough the woman gets to the line right in front of us. After all, she's got a V8, we're on foot.

To my surprise, she gets up out of the scooter and starts unloading her cart onto the checkout counter. She is moving and walking just fine. Then, I start paying attention to what she's buying. I am not exaggerating in the least: Snickers minis, Ice Cream, fudgesicles, bacon, sausage, skittles, lemonade, steaks, more ice cream, more snickers, milky ways, 3 musketeers bite size, and bread. I guess she plans on making bacon & snickers sandwiches or something.

So then she starts yapping on her cell phone. I don't think anything of this in particular until she starts swiping her food stamp card. The total was something like $150 or so, she ended up swiping the card 2 different times, and it left a cash balance of something like $18 which she paid in cash.

Oh, but we're not done yet. I check out and we're walking to the car and I see her getting into her car. You guessed it, handicapped spot. For near as I can tell, no other reason than she is overweight. She moves fine, loaded her groceries with no problem. Of course, she left the cart sitting next to her car. (**** it, someone else will get it, right?). And what kind of car was it? A relatively new Chevy Malibu.

So here we have a woman, too large to walk, driving a new car with handicapped plates, talking on her own cell phone, receiving money from you and me so she can fuel her obesity. That's our money, folks.

I haven't been able to shake this experience. I'm just disgusted with the state of the social programs in our country. Somebody enlighten me.

....

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So then, Wed night, I'm watching the TN Gubernatorial debates.

Someone asks a question of the candidates... "when will politicians do the right thing and remove the sales tax from food for poor people".

WTF? Has this guy been to Wal Mart in the last decade? Is there even such thing as a skinny poor person in this country anymore?

I was talking to a buddy of mine in law enforcement who deals with crack dealers and the like on gov't assistance on a regular basis. I think he brought up a good point.

Food stamps should buy flour, beans, rice, and milk. Literally, staples. You're not working, learn to bake.

........

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(used to work at Food Lion)I remember the WIC system for new mothers only allowed certain food types, but EBT food stamps used to take almost anything. We would constantly get people coming in, spending their food stamps on food, then trying to return it for cash so they could buy cigarettes.

Those were the smart ones, most just tried to buy them straight up.

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That said, I think there are a lot of foods that should be eliminated from food stamp usage.

Like 95% of them.

I think social programs and food stamps are a great thing, I really do. But when you see the kind of abuse going on and the state of obesity in this country, time for a reality check.

......

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I wonder if there's a whistle blower site for folks like this.

i totally agree on all points. I think assistance for those in legitimate need is required of an enlightened society, but those who abuse it should be made to pay a very heavy penalty.

~Bang

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Someone asks a question of the candidates... "when will politicians do the right thing and remove the sales tax from food for poor people".

........

omg...I think that is the main problem with California, the fact that they DON'T tax food. Our state would not be in the financial pickle it is in now if it taxed food.

I can understand not taxing milk, bread, eggs, cheese, etc. Fine. But do people really notice when their grocery bill goes up $5 for taxes?

If they stop taxing food, you're gonna have to get that money from somewhere else...just another reason for taxpayers to resent social services.

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I'm not shocked to hear these things - we've all seen it at some time or another.

Most of you know that I have MS and I refuse to use handicapped status and/or parking. I have it - just in case. Eating right, exercising, and providing for myself is a way of life. Not saying that I'm better than this woman or anyone else, but the word "responsibility" was part of the vocabulary since early childhood.

Perhaps it is time to tweak the laws a bit to the point where others can learn responsible behavior.

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omg...I think that is the main problem with California, the fact that they DON'T tax food. Our state would not be in the financial pickle it is in now if it taxed food.

I can understand not taxing milk, bread, eggs, cheese, etc. Fine. But do people really notice when their grocery bill goes up $5 for taxes?

If they stop taxing food, you're gonna have to get that money from somewhere else...just another reason for taxpayers to resent social services.

I think there are only 15 or so states that actually do tax groceries.

CA does make up for some of it with the ridiculous California Redemption Value fee (that is taxed too!) that it places on beverage containers.

But I do agree, a tax on groceries would help here.

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They were probably at home with the nanny.

That would be Nannies. With that many kids,gotta have more than one. And maid. Can't forget a maid. No way the nannies can clean and such while trying to keep up with those kids.

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Obesity is very rarely caused by the amount one eats, but rather the caloric density. This is because the human body's metabolism increases when more food is eaten and decreases when less food is eaten (incidentally, this is why so many temporary diets completely fail). The fact that the cheapest source of calories happens to be really awful for you explains much of the reason why there are fat poor people on food stamps.

As for your specific case, I can't really say much since I wasn't there. For all I know she may have been able to misrepresent her income to cheat the system. But one thing one must take into consideration is that attempts to tighten welfare requirements will almost always hurt those who legitimately need the social assistance. The governement can't exactly put a bacon limit on food stamps cards.

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Like 95% of them.

I think social programs and food stamps are a great thing, I really do. But when you see the kind of abuse going on and the state of obesity in this country, time for a reality check.

......

Would It make you feel better if she bought Bread and SPAM? Seriously, I understand the frustration, I really do, but it sounds like you got your druthers up for a whole-lot-a-nada.

You never know about people... she might be disabled mentally.

Your going to get it... NC21 is lurking! LOL!

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The fact that the cheapest source of calories happens to be really awful for you explains much of the reason why there are fat poor people on food stamps.

.

You can buy 5000 lbs of carrots for $1.09. Beans, rich in protein, cost roughly $1 per tandem axle load.

And to a large extent, I'm not even advocating that this woman should know better. But the people who put these social programs together definitely should. 3 Musketeers? Food stamps? Really?

Who is drawing up these programs with our tax dollars?

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zoony, you had about three minutes of observance, not even interaction, of her, and you can, all of a sudden, say what benefits she's eligible for?

Curious:

What's her name? Income? Religion? DV history? Child count (hers, adopted, foster, or kinship)? Housing situation? IQ? Cognitive ability? Multiaxial? Psychosocial?

You don't know the answers to any of these, but these are all questions that we ask to determine who is eligible for what.

There's no excuse for her rudeness, but don't judge what you don't know.

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omg...I think that is the main problem with California, the fact that they DON'T tax food. Our state would not be in the financial pickle it is in now if it taxed food.

I can understand not taxing milk, bread, eggs, cheese, etc. Fine. But do people really notice when their grocery bill goes up $5 for taxes?

If they stop taxing food, you're gonna have to get that money from somewhere else...just another reason for taxpayers to resent social services.

The main problem in California is that raising taxes requires a 2/3rds majority. Because of this absurd supermajority requirement, balancing the state budget has been impossible, since the California GOP strongly supports tax cuts and cuts in social spending to any tax raise.

Plus, when you think about taxes, you have to think about the relative pain different forms of taxation have. A sales tax on food is horribly regressive and will cause struggling families to suffer more when they try to put food on the table. There are many other forms of taxation that inflict far less pain and get a lot more revenue that food taxes.

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zoony, you had about three minutes of observance, not even interaction, of her, and you can, all of a sudden, say what benefits she's eligible for?

Curious:

What's her name? Income? Religion? DV history? Child count (hers, adopted, foster, or kinship)? Housing situation? IQ? Cognitive ability? Multiaxial? Psychosocial?

You don't know the answers to any of these, but these are all questions that we ask to determine who is eligible for what.

There's no excuse for rude, but don't judge what you don't know.

what he does know is that she was buying snickers, milkyway, 3 muskateers, and steak on his dime.

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