Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Right Wingers Still Don't Get It On Hunger And Food Stamps

In Joan Walsh's piece cited at the end of my May 26 post, she wrote:

if you’re in Wisconsin, and relying on food stamps, remember that Republicans don’t want you to have ketchup on your hamburger. They’d probably rather you didn’t have a hamburger at all, but Wisconsin farmers and ranchers have clout, and so proposed cuts to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program made room for Wisconsin products. But they still don’t want you to have “crab, lobster, shrimp, or any other shellfish.” Or ketchup. Or spaghetti sauce. Really.

This is the point the Right wingers continually dodge and evade.  They don't want the poorest, no matter their station, background or jobs (e.g. "tattoo artist") to have any comfort (or comfort food) whatsoever unless they're living in a low public services state (like AL or MS) and working their hands to the bone. It doesn't matter if they can't get enough benefits - tough shit - then they ought to move - say from a place like So. Colorado. Meanwhile, they are ok with the lazy rich getting anything they want out of the rest of our hides - using tax dodges, "trusts",  or whatever rentier gambits they can think of to avoid paying their fair share.

Another blogger believed he was very smart pulling up my earlier blog and questioning the image authenticity for a child I claimed to be in the throes of hunger. He said it was a "medical condition". But psychologists and health specialists will tell you that there is very little difference in a child's expression when in the maw of a developmental disability and the extreme anguish suffered in hunger and deprivation. Can he prove the child was not at some point in a similar state due to hunger? No he cannot. The blogger also questioned the circumstances pertaining to the image of Mashel McDonald making oats. He interrogated the setting and specifically pursued the background (D. Post) story to learn her dad was a tattoo artist that moved to Colo. to obtain "marijuana" for his sick child. But so what? This is irrelevant and a red herring. Many parents are now moving to this state precisely for this same reason and I wrote about this earlier, e.g.

In most cases the MJ actually pursued is CBD or Cannabidiol,  the MJ-derived substance referred to  as 'Charlotte's Web'.  While CBD has been described as a "strain of marijuana" the fact is, it is not. According to MJ researcher Joel Stanley.

Its importance lay in treating assorted developmental disabilities, including Dravet syndrome, a form of epilepsy. SO why do the right wingers drag this stuff in, including that Pop may be using a bit of weed to calm his nerves too - after all he has to be worried about his sick child? Because it fits in with their noisome template portraying all the welfare or food stamp recipients as being either forlorn losers, slackers, alkies or druggies. In other words, to use Joan Walsh's term - to reduce all these people to "garbage"! But the fact of the matter is that MOST are working poor.

Never mind! Because anyone who's working poor disrupts the Right's druggie-loser caricature, so they don't wish to go there. Better to keep the drugged out, obese (from overeating) and alcoholic tripe going to push the narrative that these people don't deserve any more than they're getting and likely not even that! (Btw, $880 a month for disability in Colorado is not a lot! )

The other lame case made, despite over 300,000 poor families in Colorado - which I guess the blogger expects all to simply pack up and move to MS - is:'Why are they living in a state with high living costs?' But if we all thought that way, I guess we'd all move to Mississippi!  Hell, it's cheaper! The reasons not to are as diverse as there are problems endured by the resident families,  including: our state has more public services available along with the assistance to help people seek them out (my niece used to work for such a public service), our state has better education facilities including for bilingual kids, and our state has better medical facilities, free clinics for the poor.

So again, we have a red herring, a distraction. Besides, if cannabidol can provide relief for a kid's tics and seizures why not live here, where at least the caretakers aren't going to be busted as they would in AL or MS? 

The notion of  just packing up and moving to a "cheaper state" and lower living costs is also absurd on its face. For one thing the thousands of currently struggling Denver workers and families didn't START out living in expensive surroundings!  No , they began in affordable neighborhoods, but could not have foreseen how the fracking boom would lead to thousands moving to Denver and environs every year - buying up homes, renting apartments - and driving up costs. Or, the many rich "amenity migrants" moving here buying up second homes - driving home prices into the stratosphere.

Having already purchased homes, and having jobs - why would they now just move to a cheaper state with no assurance they can get the same work?  Also, where is there any assurance that some form of gentrification won't also occur in these cheap states and drive up home, rental prices? There isn't any! In fact, any movers could be going from the "frying pan into the fire"- especially if it's much more difficult to get benefits! Sure it would be easier for those in apts. and I already noted how many - owing to a state law - had their leases revoked because of "refurbishments".  But again, who is to provide support for these people - many of them seniors in their 70s, and 80s?

It is very easy to proffer "solutions" shot from the hip but more difficult to get at the underlying systemic problems that spawn poverty. Sadly, however, this is the biggest and hardest fact the RIght tries to avoid:: that poverty is a systemic result of irresponsible capitalism and not the fault of the poor (which marks the fundamental attribution error - blaming oneself instead of the fucked up society)

As I noted in a previous blog post on this issue:

ALL citizens are entitled to pursue happiness whether they are poor or rich!  To limit their pursuit using artificial laws is against the Constitution!

Thus, even SNAP recipients must be enabled to pursue happiness even on a limited scale - and this must be defended as their RIGHT under the ninth amendment. That means they ought to be able -  bogus state law or no - to enjoy a bit of luxury when they need to and if they have enough left
 from taking care of immediate needs to afford it.

They damned sure ought to be able to buy catsup if they want, or candy bars, ice cream or even fried chicken - to spice up their lives - and hell, smoke a little MJ now and then without the pseudo-moral scolds like Sam Brownback having a shit fit and wagging fingers. If we don't wag fingers at the parasitical rich why do we do it at the poor? Well, because we see the poor as powerless, while the rich can maybe give us some goodies. Thus, in our skewed and warped vision the rich become celebrities while the poor are downgraded to garbage.

We'd gladly kiss the rump of Donald Trump if he'd comp us a room and a meal at one of his hotels, but we'd spit on a poor, homeless man because well...."He's too lazy to work".  In such a warped vision it's easy to forget the words of Yeshua: "Whatever thou doest for the least of my brethren that you do unto me".

Note the key words: LEAST of my brethren, not greatest, or richest.

Poverty is not chosen! This is the biggest lie circulated by the Right's poltroons in the GOP - most of whom would happily lick the boots of the Koch brothers, or Sheldon Adelson - in order to get some extra campaign largesse.

I don't expect the likes of these charlatans to change stripes, but I do expect people, ordinary citizens, to have some modicum of compassion on those struggling without attacking them for their benefits - or proclaiming they don't deserve them because they may be a tad overweight, tattoo artists - or god forbid - smoke an MJ weed or two using their benefits $$.

Sheesh! How about we go after the REAL parasites, the rich?

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