Headline Oct 31, 2015/ ''' ! THE POOREST OF THE POOR ?.... .THEN? '''


 .THEN? '''

*!WELFARE provides very tangible benefits!*.

Still, the effects are muted. For instance, in 1983 Robert Moffitt, then at Rutgers University, estimated that welfare reduced work by some four hours a week out of a total of 25.

''There is some disincentive consistent with the theory, but the economic magnitude is not large,'' said James P. Zilak, head of the Center for Poverty Research at the University of Kentucky:

''Oftentimes these disincentive effects are overstated in the policy discourse.''

New research shows that more cash welfare early in a child's life improves the child's longevity,  educational attainment and nutritional status and income in adulthood.

So as we attempt this case study of the richest country in the world, it is very pertinent to ask as to what then did United States achieve with welfare reform?

Its core objective getting the poor into jobs  -was laudable. In the early years, the effects seemed almost too good to believe. The number of families on welfare plummeted. The labor supply of single mothers soared. Child poverty declined sharply.

But the cheering faded. Over time the labor supply of less-educated single mothers, those with at most high school education, returned to its earlier level. Poverty rebounded.

After the fact, many independent researchers concluded that the strong economy of the late 1990s, combined with bigger wage subsidies through an expanded earned-income tax credit, deserved most of the credit for the improvement.  

Meanwhile, pushing the poor off welfare  -replacing the entitlement to cash assistance with limited state-run programs that sharply curtailed access to aid for all sorts of reasons  -has definite costs borne by the poorest of the poor.

When the great recession struck, many of the poorest Americans there was no safety net for them. ''Extreme poverty was more affected by the shock to the labor market than in prior experience,'' said professor Hoynes at Berkeley.

Why is this debate still relevant today? The evidence has not caught up with the popular belief that welfare reform was a huge success.

The old welfare strategy Mr. Murray blamed for so many social ills died long ago. Its replacement is tiny by comparison, providing cash to only about a quarter of the poor families and typically only enough to take them a *quarter of the way out of poverty*.

Still, it remains under siege. And the argument against it are pretty much the same that President Reagan made 30 years ago.

Representative Ryan has been promoting a plan he drafted last year that would substitute most remaining federal assistance programs with block grants to states and impose tough work requirements on beneficiaries.

''Rather that just treating the symptoms of poverty,'' he said last month, ''our goal must be to help people move from welfare into work and self-sufficiency.''

Before the world or the United States goes down that road again, however, it might it might make sense to reassess the strengths of the underlying argument? 

That poor students/people will never act responsibly, get a job and stay in a family unless they are thrown into the swimming pool and left to struggle with little support from the rest of us. 

With respectful dedication to all the Students, Parents, Professors and Teachers of the Developing World. See Ya all on !WOW!  -the World Students Society Computers-Internet-Wireless:

''' Thinking Solutions '''

Good Night and God Bless

SAM Daily Times - the Voice of the Voiceless


Post a Comment

Grace A Comment!