In 1964, President Lyndon Johnson initiated the War on Poverty. Thus began the ever-expanding Welfare State. Today, 46 years later, we are no closer to winning that war. Instead, the “war” created a vast and ever-growing constituency that perpetuates the Welfare State — a permanent underclass, a network of government bureaucracies and bureaucrats to administer the welfare state, and, most toxic of all, a culture of dependency.
I’m reminded of what President Ronald Reagan said in his State of the Union address in 1964:
My friends, some years ago, the Federal Government declared war on poverty, and poverty won. Today the Federal Government has 59 major welfare programs and spends more than $100 billion a year on them. What has all this money done? Well, too often it has only made poverty harder to escape. Federal welfare programs have created a massive social problem. With the best of intentions, government created a poverty trap that wreaks havoc on the very support system the poor need most to lift themselves out of poverty: the family. Dependency has become the one enduring heirloom, passed from one generation to the next, of too many fragmented families.
The following letter to the editor was published by a Jackson, Mississippi newspaper, Clarion Ledger, on August 23, 2009. The writer is Dr. Roger Starner Jones, a physician who specializes in emergency medicine at the U. of Mississippi Medical Center. This is genuine, verified by snopes.com.
~Eowyn (h/t my friend Bob W.!)
“Why Pay For the Care of the Careless?”
Starner Jones, MD