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How Much Are Food Stamps Costing Taxpayers?

~ The Rebel ~ 2011/11/11 03:43:23
Food stamp enrollment swelled to a new high in 2010, surpassing the 40 million mark for the first time in March 2010. That number climbed steadily to 45,183,931 (1 in 7 Americans) in June 2011. The average recipient receives $133 per month, totaling $5.5 billion in government spending each month.

This surge can be attributed to ramped up marketing efforts on the part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (the agency which administers SNAP benefits), including looser eligibility requirements and outreach to large populations. The Department of Agriculture and the White House say it is meant for the poorest of the poor, but there is a deeper story beneath those talking points. Government officials also want to use food stamps to influence products that food vendors sell and what private citizens can buy at the grocery store.

SNAP is ostensibly about feeding the poor. But the Department of Agriculture's aggressive marketing, combined with ever-loosening eligibility requirements, is changing what that means.

Read More: http://townhall.com/tipsheet/elisabethmeinecke/201...

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  • Lordphoton999 *AFCL* 2011/11/11 08:57:21
    Lordphoton999 *AFCL*
    +1
    I know there are families that really need this program, but I wish there are more over sight to prevent rampant fraud.
  • JGF 2011/11/11 05:26:11
    JGF
    +1
    The eligibility requirements are actually rather stringent. But, like a civil service job, once you're in the system you can be there for life. And the criteria are often illogical - why should my neighbor, a semi-paralyzed stroke survivor living on social security, be allocated a measly $16/month after a dozen visits to a caseworker, while another man I know, the same age, recently laid off, gets $200/month after one visit? (both single, living alone in apartments) But my major question has always been how can someone qualify for food stamps when they can afford to purchase a house, own two cars, multiple cell phones, high speed internet, digital cable package, big screen TV, etc.?

    How can food stamps influence product sales? The modern version (no more booklets of "stamps") resembles a credit card and works like one. You can purchase anything you like except alcohol, tobacco, and non-food items (toilet paper, toothpaste, etc.), swipe your card at the checkout, and leave.

    But to me the worst abuse of the system isn't with the food stamps themselves - it's seeing some uneducated single mother with three kids and a shopping cart filled to overflowing with sodas, Twinkies, pudding pops, potato chips, and cookies.
  • Chukroast 2011/11/11 05:16:37
    Chukroast
    +1
    We could cut whatever the amount is if we'd disallow things like lobsters, steak, crab claws, and the like. In fact there should be a separate section of every store, just for food stamp users, that contains only staples and basic foods. And, of course, cut the allotment in $$$ in half.
  • millermedia 2011/11/11 04:43:11
    millermedia
    +2
    I work with a lot of the poor here locally. The Food Stamp program is a life-saver for most of these people. They need the assistance. They could live on the bland government commodities such as plain cheese, high fat meats, canned stews, cheap grapefruit juice, etc. The current programs gives a boost of self-esteem to the individuals that need the assistance that they can walk into a grocery store and pay just like anyone else. Do I see abuse? Certainly. The recipients need regular classes on good nutrition and wiser buying habits. I have seen some buy 12-pack soft-drinks for full price just because they wanted it now. They can wait one more week and buy it half price on sale and use money off coupons and stretch their budget. Then the overall allotment to everyone could be reasonably be cut by 15-20% without the recipients being hurt. There are ways to save without rattling people's cages.
  • jrtmanmd 2011/11/11 04:07:13
    jrtmanmd
    +1
    More than it should with all of the freeloaders sucking the life out of it!
  • MAMMY51♥POTL~PWCM~JLA♥ 2011/11/11 03:51:00
    MAMMY51♥POTL~PWCM~JLA♥
    +2
    It like every other program for the poor is about CONTROL.

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