Tag Archives: welfare

Government Usurps Charitable Nature and Giving

Over the last 60 years the federal government has intervened more expansively into the needs of the people.  Especially for those on the lower end of the socio-economic scale.  It is very sad to see folks that are hungry, out of work or disabled.   If those conditions don’t make you feel down a bit then you are extremely hard hearted or so egotistic that you can’t notice the world around you.   We have social security, medicare, medicaid, the food stamp program, breakfast and lunch programs for kids in school, unemployment benefits, and straight up welfare payments for those in need and we have public housing projects and affordable housing projects galore.   You even get a refundable tax credit if you make less than $15,000 per year.  I have nothing against helping those with needs as long as there is reciprocity involved by the recipient.  They can give back gratitude and a pledge to do their part to improve their lot in life.  The government takeover of all these activities has throttled one of our most endearing and uplifting qualities as a people–the desire to be charitable and to do charity for our neighbors in need. 

When I was a kid the old folks who were frail lived with family.  I had that happen with one of my great grandmothers and both of my grandmothers.  There was even an aunt who had bad times and ended up with family for years.  It never occurred to anyone then that the government would provide for them.  That was a family duty and an act of charity at the same time.  It was hard for sure but in the long run I think the older folks and the family who boarded them both benefitted from the experience.  They weren’t shipped off to a medicare support location.  The poor were helped by the local authorities at the city and/or the county level.  There was welfare.  It was meager but sustained life.  Ask someone who lived through the Great Depression what they did when they had no money or food or a place to live.   Please do that, don’t listen to some talking head on TV that tells you what it was like.  They worked and prayed and figured things out for themselves mostly.  They didn’t get food stamps or refundable tax credits or medicaid.  When I was a child the poor kids at schoool were fed.   The other parents and the PTA groups would raise money and pitch in enough so everyone got to eat.  No one starved.  There were no big banners or headlines, the problem was dealt with by the local community.    When someone faced a serious health problem and the costs were too high then the church or community groups would raise money to help them out.  I have no doubt that some folks got overlooked with this sub rosa approach to needs.  But you know what, there are folks now that get overlooked by the welfare system even with all their computers and social security numbers. 

Charity is a very good thing for our spirit and nation and I bemoan the passing of that tradition and torch to the government.  The government now spends and taxes us at hundreds of billions every year for what would have been considered charity 60 years ago.  I can appreciate that people don’t want to be as giving now in their communities for charity because those needs are filled by the government.  Even when there is a natural disaster like a hurricane FEMA is there to the rescue.  Lord knows we are taxed enough to pay for all these programs and the bloated bureaucracies that goes with each of them.  That help dispensed by the government is so cold and impersonal.   It has lost all the charisma of citizen helping citizen out of a feeling of compassion and become a class struggle between taxpayers and tax takers.  That is not good for our societal mores.   We should care about one another and be wiilling to lift our hand to aid another in need.  Now we justifiably feel like we “gave at the office” and have already done our part when the IRS confiscated our money.  

Have you ever lifted someone up off the street who was smelly and incoherent?  Stopped to staunch the bleeding of an accident victim and not just walked or driven by without breaking pace or slowing down.  Have you given food to a homeless person rather than tossing them a dollar?  Have you spent an afternoon with a child who is alone because their parents are divorced or otherwise just not available?  When you get your hands dirty helping others you cleanse your own soul.    Those who want the government to take care of all our needs from cradle to grave miss the point of and the need for human interaction.  “Government” is not human. It is indifferent.  It is especially disturbing that so many are willing to accept government aid without end.  They become those Roman mobs expecting bread and circuses for their support of the government.  I hope we bring real charity back to the forefront of our social agenda.  Just like with the health care debate now I think that those exceptional needs that some use as the horror story to ignite emotions about someone who can’t afford this or that operation should be dealt with by charity.  If we practice real charity and less government, we as individuals and as a nation will be the better for it.  An act of charity ennobles the grateful recipient and burnishes the kinder spirit of the giver.    Government can’t bring good to its people, it can only bring force and power and results, numbers, outcomes.    The good is within the individual and the people.  The “good” government does is only defined by the elites who determine those results, outcomes, numbers and forces to exert.   I hope Americans never lose their charitable hearts to the mandates and dictates of government run social agendas.

Does the Post Office still have general delivery?  I wonder.  You used to be able to mail a letter to someone in another town care of “general delivery” and they could retrieve it at the main post office.  Every town had a main post office.  You didn’t need an address and certainly not a zip code.  Of course the addressee had to go to the post office and ask under their name at general delivery.  A slow but sure way to communicate with those moving around.    http://www.olcranky.wordpress.com

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Filed under Culture, Environment, family, Politics, Socialized Medicine

Jobs or Politics? Power and Pandering

Pandering is a legal offense in most States and in Great Britain.  It is the nicer term for pimping.   In politics however we allow the pandering to openly flourish and because so many of us now benefit from Government largese it is even applauded and what’s even more disturbing is that it is expected.  Those who only take but don’t contribute to our economy number in the millions and yet their vote counts as much as those who lift the ax, the hammer or pen and actually produce something for society.  To pander you need a wiling listener and participant just like the con man needs a willing and greedy mark to work his scheme.   The panderer needs to have something to offer and the recipient of his “gifts” has to have the desire to take something that is not really his to have.   The stimulus plan is the largest pandering job yet in US history.  It dwarfs all others.

Olcranky here is beginning to sound like a one trick pony talking about the bailout and stimulus plan but, hey, it isn’t my fault.  The damn stuff is on the news every day and in the headlines.  As more details become known it is quite evident that hypocrisy is running riot.  These monies are going to social welfare programs for the most part to expand their reach and thus control over even larger segments of our society.  More food stamps means more voters dependent on the party granting those increases and likewise with all that urban and housing money being spent.   Even ACORN will be receiving millions more in Government funding.   What is the purpose of that other than to bring in more votes for the party in power?   The people in charge of our Government at the moment harp upon the one theme that the whole deal is about Jobs, Jobs, Jobs.   A couple of thoughts occur to me with regard to that allegation.  First they have it all wrong.  Jobs are the result we want but the process is critical.  The issue should be about business, business, business and industry, industry, industry.  It is business and industry that creates the jobs.   We should be doing the things that enhance the prospects for businesses to thrive and grow and innovate.  That will create the jobs. 

If the only goal is jobs then there is a much easier and cheaper way to go about it and also one that is much more transparent and honest.  Everyone talks about how transparent things are going to be now, well, let’s have some real transparency, starting with the stated goal.   This package is already up to 900 billion and still climbing.  A trillion is going to be the good estimate.   We could wipe out unemployment completely and at astronomically less costs  if we followed my advice.  Why not simply say that anyone, and I mean anyone, who has no job can show up at the nearest Federal facility like a post office, Social Security office, courthouse, etc. and we would hire them on the spot for mimimum wage.  Give them picks and shovels and clippers and rakes and let them all go out and work on the highways, bridges, canals, etc. and clean them up and repair them.  Say the mimimum wage is 8 bucks an hour so you have 320 a week, times 4, for about 1300 call it per month for each worker or about 16000 per year.  Now there is give or take around 10 million unemployed in the country right now.  We could even allow couples to both have the work.   They could earn 32000 a year between them.  That is not living high on the hog but it sure as hell wouldn’t be proverty either.  Ask someone who makes around 20,000 a year now working at Home Depot.  I have rounded off of course.  Do the math and you will see that for less than 20 billion a year everyone could have a job.  We could even guarantee them the job for 3 years.   They could do other projects besides those I listed quickly.  Doesn’t really matter.  They would spend their income and spur the economy according to the bright guys in Washington.  In the meantime Congress could take other action on reducing taxes for businesses that would actually build business  and thus jobs for the long haul.  This minimum wage hiring would be so much cheaper and sure as hell would be more honest.   At least there would be some work done even if it has little value.   Value is clearly not the point in Washington these days anyway.  If jobs is the signal criteria then give them jobs.   Lord just think of the money we could save.  We are talking hundreds of billions.  Exactly, and I mean exactly, what are we going to get for the trillion they are planning right now?   I implore you to look at the details of the plan.  It does create hundreds of thousands of new governement jobs.  It buys votes.  Does it encourage investment or expansion of business?   Either we have a free market system or we don’t.  Let’s not allow the Government to hide behind the rhetoric and disguise their true intentions in proposing this package of Government handouts in a thinly hidden “pay for play” scheme to buy future loyalty and votes for one party.   The issues are too important for our future freedoms.

I don’t like my idea of just giving those jobs and money away to folks who are unemployed.  It is not a good idea but compared to the socialistic expansion of the Federal government it seems a better alternative.  I do feel sorry for those out of work and seeking a job.  I really do.  But I have sympathy with lots of folks for different reasons like those with a serious illness.  I can’t fix all their problems.  Mostly they have to take care of their own circumstances.  We need to provide opportunity and freedom and a fair playing field but otherwise stand aside and let people march to their own drummer, not the kettle beat of bureaucrats.

The Fed has now expanded its asset side of the balance sheet to over 2 trillion dollars.  That has ballooned from just over 900 billion a few short months ago.   Don’t you wish you could add assets to your balance sheet so easily.  How do they do that?  The answer is simple.  They print up more money when they need it.  Boy, wouldn’t that be nice if you or I could simply call our bank anytime we wanted and tell them to add another few thousand of so to our account.   Since we are not on a gold standard, they can do that.   Just wave the magic Federal wand and you have instant money.   Think about it.


Filed under Culture, Economics, government

Mad Scientists To Run Economy

We have embarked upon a dangerous road of Government intervention into the private market place in the last few months.   The scope and scale of that intervention is staggering.   The Government seems to believe it can run the market and pick the new products we all want.  It has been picking winners and losers for several months now since it let Lehman Bros. fail but conversely decided it wouldn’t allow the Big Three to fail even though their business model is a failure and has been for a few decades now.  The Government is picking the type and source of our energy supplies.  Abundant energy is the very lifeblood of any modern industrial and technological society.   Virtually everything we make or use is available directly or indirectly because of an energy source that produced it or delievered it to us or moved the workers who made it to and from their place of work and ran the machines they use.   Even computers are energy dependent.    With the lineup of industries and special interest groups growing daily with their hand out for the Governement and the apparent eagerness of the Government to comply with those requests we need to ponder carefully how much we want the Government to be involved in our economic affairs.  

I wrote only yesterday that we should look to Europe to see what our future will be in so many vital areas because it has been the birthing place of most societal and economic alterations over the years.   The Government is now running the large banks, the auto industry and very shortly the energy industry to an even greater extent than it already does.  Airlines, coal and even real estate loom on the horizon as potential targets of Government intervention.   Great Britain went through a similar experience and experiment after the War.   Perhaps that episode can give us some clue as to the success or failure of having the Government be the lead horse in all matters economic.  

After the War Great Britain was in dire financial straits from the strains and pains of six years of war.   You know we formulated the Marshall Plan  to rejuvenate the European  Economy.   Part of that process was providing capital to Great Britain to get its domestic economy moving again.   Socialist tendancies were all the rage among the elite class in Britain at the time.  They wanted an active and involved Government in the affairs of industry and commerce for the good of the common man.  It even had a name like all such movements do–the New Jerusalem.  I don’t know why that was picked exactly but that was the movement’s moniker.    The shibboleth of the movement was “full employment” and that meant to them that the Government had to run most of industry.   When Britain did receive its share of the aid it spent it on the Welfare State rather than on giving it to private industry to rebuild its industrial infrastructure.  It was a redistribution of the wealth controlled by the Government.  That is where most of the money went.   The Government proceeded to take over coal mines, radio and media, the Bank of England, gas, railways, electricity, steel and aviation among other industries.  The unions were given pretty much free rein.   The unions naturally wanted more wages for less work and the consequence was the inevitable reduction in productivity.  That constant decline in productivity resulted in Britain becoming less and less competitive in the commercial and industrial world with its products and services.  This approach lasted for a about 30 years.  But the Welfare State flourished.  Time was when Britain had some of the best car manufacturers in the world.  Jaguar, Astin-Martin, Rover, Bentley to name a few.   How many are owned now by British interests?   None of them.   While the British were investing only about 9% of its GNP in industry and infrastructure the Germans were investing on average about 19% of their GNP in those areas.  Which country had the better rebound from the end of the War until 1980?

Naturally the Government could not predict new markets with any accuracy like the private market.  They were not innovative.  Job security was the goal in and of itself as opposed to customer service and making a product that people wanted.  All of those industries became stagnant and declined in pr0duct quality and profits with the passing years and became a burden on the taxpayers of Britain.  They had to be subsidized by the Government.   To maintain their enterprises and the Welfare State  the Government had to borrow money to keep those industries in operation.   They borrowed lots money by issuing long term bonds.  This circumstance lasted for a couple of decades but no one was willing to make a change because so many voters were now addicted to the Welfare State operation.   Those bonds had to be paid off by future taxpayers of Britain.  They were mostly issued by Attlee.  Those bonds were not finally retired until 2002.   Of course with inflated currency. 

How did that experiment work out for Britain?  Well, their industries continued a steady decline and even the staunchest defenders of the Welfare State finally began to see that that system couldn’t continue or the entire nation would go bankrupt.   It was put to rest with the election of Thatcher primarily.  The Government began under her to get out of industry and return it to the private markets.  Britain has done much, much better in the last 25 years than it did in the 25 years after the War.   Its industry was revitalized and  productivity and prosperity grew for all classes of its people.   Government makes a lousy boss and an even lousier merchant or entrepreneur.   I don’t ask you to take my word for any of this.  You can do your own reading of that period.  But like Reagan said “facts are a stubborn thing”.  

I hope that many members of Congress and that new administration will look not only to our experiences of the Great Depression but also review some of the history I have rendered here.   Looks to me like we are about to repeat that grand mistake of the Brits.  History can be a wonderful teacher but you have to know it to learn anything.

As a side note, it was because of those loans we made to Britain at the end of the War that made them go along with the Bretton Woods agreements to regularize monetary systems around the world and create the IMF.  The British negotiator for the first of these loans for the British was none other than John Maynard Keynes.  Yes, that Keynes.   He didn’t much like us Americans.   He thought we were socially degenerate and not as aware and advanced as the socialist leaning elite of Britain.  He is quoted by Lady Carter as referring to Americans as “a rare breed of sub dagos, speaking no known language intelligently”.

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Filed under Economics, Foreign Affairs, government, history

Welfare Reform for the 21st Century

Our entitlement and welfare programs are growing exponentially and threaten to drown our economy and future growth.   Further, the way they work now does not  truly encourage job seeking and individual endeavor and taking personal responsibility for our own  lives and the decisions we make.  The programs that currently exist are enormously expensive and counterproductive in achieving the goals mentioned above.  A short list would be HUD, the food stamp program, earned income tax credits, the various job training programs, Social Security welfare payments, lunch  programs at school, grants to cities and states for various training programs, and of course the actual welfare payments made directly by the States.   That is not a complete list; you are welcome to add all the others that you can think of; the list is very extensive.   These programs cost a fortune every year.   It is not only the direct costs of the programs themselves but the additional burden of the gazillion government workers that administer the programs.  They are a tremendous strain on the taxpayers and very serious questions can be raised about whether they efficiently and morally achieve their announced purposes.   It is time for some radical new ideas to be tried.   Yes, many people  get off welfare or entitlement programs every year.   But those that do I believe do so more because of their own effort and work rather than any benefit from the programs.

Some folks need help and some folks sad to say are laggards who don’t have the ambition or inclination to change their lives.  That is their choice.  Even the poor should have freedom of choice.   If you want to sit in a 300 square foot apartment all day and read poetry and eat peanut butter sandwiches who am I to say that is a “bad” life.   Is there any way to change things to perhaps save money and allow everyone the freedom to lead their own life.

Why not cancel and eliminate every single one of those programs and fire all the employees administering them.   You make your own assessment of what they cost.  I think you will find if you add them all that it comes of well over 250 billion a year at least.   Why not simply write a check to anyone who wants it who is not working for a minimum amount each year in lieu of  any welfare or entitlement program.   Say $17,000 for a couple and $10,000 for a single person.  Yep, it is sure not much money but they would have food, clothing and shelter.  They could always go to work if they choose.   I figure a little less than half the poplulation are workers because more than half are too young or too old to be in the workforce.   Of that group how many would opt for the program?   Make you own estimate and do the math.  The only “welfare” agency that would remain would be a clearing house for job opportunities and references to NGO services.   If you do work during your lifetime and pay a minimum of say $40,000 into Social Security then you  could get Social Security at retirement age; otherwise you would recieve only the minimum payment.   The numbers can be tinkered with all you like but you get the idea.  Play around with the concept.   With some encouragement from  society and family I think the overwhelming majority would opt for work and the opportunities that it would bring.   In the meantime no one would need to be on the street or without food, clothing and shelter unless that was their choice.   Adjustments could be made for special needs individuals.  We alraedy provide help for them now and they could be blended into this concept.

Some might argue that there would be a “stigma” attached to accepting  the Federal check.  Yes, I would think so and what is wrong with that.  At least this stigma can be removed, get a job.  It is not like the spot in MacBeth that can’t be removed.  (“out out, damn spot”) This is only a bare bones outline and I invite you to give it a work out, improve it please.  It is time for new ideas and methods to deal with our world of today.   Continuing what we have been doing will guarantee that we will be in the same place 50 years from now except the costs will be even higher and the public debt beyond bearing.  Let’s try something very different for a change.

Prester John was a mythical character that took the world by word of mouth and innuendo centuries ago–the 12th century A.D   He was supposedly descended from the three wise men according to one version.  He lived somewhere allegedly in the far east beyond Persia.  There was a letter that was supposed to have been written by him to leaders of Europe at this time offering help in freeing  the Church of the Holy Seplucher from Saracen hands.  The letter was a forgery.    Many miracles and wonderous things were attributed to this myth.  He was at least part of the object of Marco Polo’s journey to China and he was still being discussed as late as Christopher Columbus’s time.  He was a religious Bigfoot of his time and  for several more centuries.  He is a demonstration of the power of hope in man.  Everyone wanted to believe in him so badly that they knew he just had to exist.

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Filed under Economics, history, Politics

Charity or Welfare

I have always considered myself a charitable person and I hope you have too.   True charity is one of the most appealing of our human characteristics.   Charity goes back to biblical times.  The Bible is filled with examples of charity and the Sermon on the Mount is a classical exposition of the charitable heart.   Mother Nature is not charitable.  Outside the human realm the concept does not exist.   Beyond our reach it is truly the law of the jungle that prevails and nothing but the survival of the fittest.   I believe our soul and spirit are lifted to their highest levels when we reach our hand down to help somone struggling below.   Over the last decades our charitable spirit has been challenged by the policies of Government.

The Government now has made charity a welfare program of entitlement.  I posit that such severe intervention by the Government into the social life and fabric of the nation does much more harm than the promised good if delivers.   True charity is voluntary because one’s heart is moved by the needs and circumstances of another.   It enobles the donor and the donee.  We have all had a difficult moments in life and wanted the comfort of another and even the help of another.   You never get a “warm fuzzy” feeling in dealings with the Government.   Take the classical example of one family delivering a basket of goodies and food to another in their community that they know is in need with the use of food stamps by that same family.   Who feels good about the issuance of the food stamps?  The Government clerk administering the program doesn’t care, it is just a paycheck to them.    The recepient has no one they can identify that really cared about them.   It is all impersonal and cold.  It is welfare and Nanny Government at its finest.  

I believe we are a charitable people by nature.  Our history is mostly filled with countless examples of personal charity at work until the New Deal.   I know charities still receive substantial monies each year but I believe they could receive so much more if the Government programs were curtailed or eliminated.  Welfare should never be viewed as a “entitlement” but for what it is–charity.    If you get something from your fellow man that you know was given purely from their heart I believe you would be more grateful and feel better about it anytime than taking the Government’s handout.

Remember that the Government took that money from someone else who earned it with the sweat of their brow or for a risk they took  (At least before the Age of Bailout).  If our taxes were reduced I have no doubt in my mind that there would be an increase in the amount of giving and our society would be the better for it.  Many people now resent the Government taking their money for the various welfare programs in existence.   We like to decide for ourselves who is deserving of charity and not simply gaming the system.   One of the problems with the Government being in charge of our chariable giving is that politics gets involved, rather than the true caring for another human being, votes become the goal, not aid to one in need.  The Government is in control and the definition of charity gets twisted into all shapes and forms.  I mean do you want ACORN to be a recepient of welfare payments or it advocates or supporters?  True charity is a straight line from donor to donee, not a triangle with the Government diversion.   My heart and sympathy goes to those who have fallen on hard times through no fault of their own and  even to the extent of allowing a second chance to my fellow man but my heart does not go out to a Government program.

I have never been hurt by what I did not say”  Calvin Coolidge.   Not bad advice for all of us.  Our tongue is our own worst enemy.  Think about it.

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Filed under Culture, Economics, Politics

Welfare or charity?

The topic of welfare has risen to the fore again as well it should with one of the tax proposals from one of our candidates for President.   If we as a people believe our taxes should be used to give money directly to one particular group selected by politicians then I suppose we have no choice but to go along under our democratic principles.  But I do like truth in advertising.   The refundable tax credits are welfare by any reasonable definition of the word and it strikes me as reasonable to use that term.   The folks who are to receive the cash payments are indeed workers  but they are ones who only pay payroll taxes, to wit: FICA (Socical Security) and Medicare payments.  They will pay approximately 7.5% of their wages for that and their employer has to pay an additional 7.5%.   I don’t view that as any great sacrifice on their part.  After all it is for their own retirement money down the road.  If you believe the theory behind Social Security it is your money being put aside for retirement and the Medicare portion is for your personal benefit too when you become eligible.   The point is that those taxes are not income taxes and those funds don’t contribute to the money needed to run our bloated Federal establishment and all the other expenses of Government.   All the estimates say that about 40% of the folks would qualify for this cash payment  even though they pay no income taxes.  The politicians have made the decision that this group is worthy of special help; that this group of folks can’t make it on their own without public assistance.   The Federal budget is enormous and that means a little over half of us have to fund everything else  for the Government–military, the entitlement programs, like food stamps, etc, all the Federal agencies.  We are reaching a point where there is not going to be enough of us who actually pay income taxes to foot the total bill for everything except Social Security and Medicare.  Just as now there is only about 2 workers for every person collecting Social Security, and that is part of the problem with that system, we will soon be facing the same dilemma with our general Federal budget items.   How low can the ratio go of income tax paying citizens to non payers?   Thirty percent, twenty per cent.   There is a point where it all will collapse.

Start from scratch and ask yourself how much in income taxes anyone should have to pay regardless of their income.   Whether they make $25,000 a year or a million what is the upper limit you  think is “fair”.  How much should someone be allowed to keep of their own earnings.   I have seen several polls on the topic before and most of them say the majority of us believe income taxes should never be more than 30% of anyone’s income.   Remember we all have to additionally pay local and state taxes too.  There has to be a limit unless you prefer a socialistic or communist form of governance where the Government owns and controls everything including the right to tell you where you will work and what you will make and there are no taxes because the Government already owns everything.

We are rapidly heading to a situation where only half of us and soon even less than half will be paying for the operation of the Government.   That is unsustainable.   We need to take a hard look now at our taxing policy.   If we do not there will soon be a true tax rebellion.   Once less than half of us are paying for everything we will have reached a tipping point of opposition.   There is a long and strong reluctance to high taxes in the Nation and it will grow from reluctance to outright defiance.  We could become like Italy where cheating on the tax man is a national sport and only the foolhardy are paying the taxes due.  

 I once read an interesting article years ago by a very famous businesman who proposed that we limit the right to vote to only those that pay income taxes.   If you didn’t pay income taxes in the year before the election you couldn’t vote.  It is a very intriguing concept and does have some merit.   No one would be denied their civil rights.  The right to vote is not well covered in the US constitution.   The 15th amendment only speaks about denying rights based upon race, color or previous condition of involuntary servitude.   Otherwise the Constitution is silent about any Federal standards for voter qualifications.  The premise of the argument was quiet straight forward–why should those who are not paying the bill have a say in how the money is spent?   Shouldn’t those who are funding the Governement have the right to determine how that Governement will be spending the money.  You have heard a lot lately the expression “no skin in the game” referring to the mortgage bailout situation and those homeowners who bought their homes for virtually no money down and that is an apt phrase when it comes to those who don’t pony up income taxes.   What is their skin in the game?   Remember the proposal is abundantly clear that the non tax paying citizens would have all their civil rights under the Constitution protected.  If you have people who don’t pay but still vote isn’t that an invitation to worse corruption in the political process where the ones in control of Government will be inclined to dole out goodies (bread and circuses) to the non payers to keep their votes and thus the power?   If the Government is going to take my money by force of law at least let me have a say in how it is spent and don’t let the non payer have an equal voice.   If I am paying for the free lunch for someone else they shouldn’t get to select the menu.    Those are the arguments.  They do pose very interesting questions  of fairness.   I thought you might enjoy the mental exercise of thinking that through.

Taking your money and giving it directly  to someone else is welfare, it is not merely adjusting tax policy.   If such a welfare program is the will of the people then let them speak to it in plain english.

The English royal family changed its surname during WWI from the German surname(s) that had been used for over a 100 years.  This was at the height of the war in 1917.   You know the name chosen of course–Windsor.  Oh, technically the Royals aren’t name the way you and I are.  It is not Charles Windsor.  It is Charles of the House of Windsor for example.

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Filed under Economics, government, Politics