Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Goddamn Poor Folks

I grew up with the mistaken notion that Jesus really wanted to help poor folks. When I grew older and wiser, I learned that the people who were the most strident Jesus-backers were also the angriest poor-people-haters ... I mean, evangelicals are always staunch defenders of the GOP's anti-poor tradition, and if that means that we won't raise the minimum wage, we will cut welfare benefits to the neediest of the needy, and make sure that poor kids don't have a sititch of healthcare, well, that must be the will of Jesus. And who wouldn't hate the poor? By and large, these filthy bastards are just stealing our tax dollars and serving as a burden of the nanny state. Thankfully, many of them procreate and produce strong young men of minority descent, and we have enough soldiers for a temporary "surge."

"I'll stick 30 pieces of silver straight up your ass."

Of course, nobody really wants to be identified as "that guy who hates poor people" ... so, the GOP applied the lessons from their successful campaign to create a socially acceptable language of racism, and applied them to poor folks. So, instead of saying "I wish I could roll that bum in the alley and kick his dirty fucking face in ... it would sure be great to jerk off to that memory later," they say things like "we're not giving them a handout, we're giving them a hand up." See? Much better. Our good friends at OneNewsNow have brought "scientific research" into the mix, and seek to demonstrate that the poor really aren't so"poor" after all:

[A] prominent researcher says most of America's "poor" live in conditions that would be judged as comfortable or well off just a few generations ago. [...] Rector says according to the government's own data that measures living standards, the typical poor person has cable or satellite television, a microwave, air conditioning, a DVD player, and two color televisions; and close to 45 percent of them own their own home, which is typically a three-bedroom residence with 1.5 bathrooms. Furthermore, he points out that one-third of all poor people own two cars...

How many Bibles do they own? None, of course. And apparently, if these people just followed the word of Christ and got themselves a Protestant work ethic, they would be selling their 3-bed, 1.5 bath luxury condos and trading up to a home in the Hamptons quickly:

Dr. Robert Rector says a lack of work and a lack of marriage are the two main factors producing child poverty in the U.S. [...] The researcher says the average family with poor children only works about 16 hours a week on a yearly average. According to Rector, if the number of hours worked per week were raised to 40, those children would be "immediately raised out of poverty." And throwing more money at the problem, he adds, will not fix anything. Instead he suggests that the underlying behavioral issues need to be dealt with in order to see results.

Whoo baby! The solution is here - just raise the hours worked per week from 16 to 40, and poor people ain't po no mo! We don't need to worry about caring for small children in the home (who may be sick or disabled), we don't need to concern ourselves with the fact that NO WORK MAY BE AVAILABLE, just go out and work 40 hours. Come on, it's so simple!


Carl said...

There is much idiocy to be mined in the "let them work harder" trope that the right wing pulls out of its ass.

As if hard work were foreign to a guy who supports two kids and a wife on food stamps and pushing a broom for nine hours a day...

HistoryWriter said...

All goes to show how in touch conservatives are with the real world. Amazingly the low IQ/low income set that subscribes to OneNewsNow are the ones being screwed by that same philosophy. Somehow (maybe just due to their abject stupidity) the cons have gotten them to support the worst kinds of social programs. Admittedly it doesn't take much brainpower to be a fundamentalist, but to be THAT dull-witted defies comprehension.