T Nation

Don't Drug Test Welfare Reciepients?!

Someone fix me. Or am I already seeing it correctly?

Admittedly this is something I hadn’t really thought of before that often. On the surface it makes a lot of sense to me. I realize that my views are sort of on the fringe of a lot of mainstream views when it comes to fiscal things. I also like to think I’m somewhat pragmatic and can discuss things I disagree with or realize things that aren’t going to change overnight.

  1. We give out too much money, but that system probably isn’t going to change drastically anytime soon.

  2. If we are going to distribute tax payer dollars to people for welfare, it would be great if that money was actually going to good use and not drugs.

  3. Knowing 1 and 2, drug testing makes a lot of sense and I was happy to see Kansas was going to start drug testing welfare recipients. Until I started reading about how much is spent to catch such a little amount of abusers. We all know if we are honest that abuse is going to happen in any system.

http://www.kansascity.com/2013/12/26/4714700/kansas-follows-missouris-path.html

Is it a waste of taxpayer resources to go after people who may be abusing taxpayer systems? Is catching the few bad guys these programs seem to catch worth the big cost? I’m having a very difficult time with my thought process here.

I would like for the most part the discussion to be centered around the testing and it’s worthiness in terms of money. We can do the “this is why we shouldn’t have welfare in the first place” in another thread and we have done that over and over anyways.

Part of my internal struggle here is how much money should go after cheaters if the intent of going after cheaters is to save money. If it’s a net negative should we even bother? That seems like a pussy way of going about things, but clearly spending 500,000 dollars or so to save 500 doesn’t make much fiscal sense either.

Full disclosure: I haven’t read a whole lot on the subject, those were just the initial link and another google link. Was hoping I’m missing something.

It sounds like a good idea at first, but it would cost more money to do the drug testing than it would cost to just pay them their welfare…

We should be drug testing our politicians, if anything.

I wouldn’t be surprised if those who stand to profit from testing are the ones lobbying for it.

[quote]zecarlo wrote:
I wouldn’t be surprised if those who stand to profit from testing are the ones lobbying for it. [/quote]

I think this has largely been confirmed in regards to Florida.

Like I said, haven’t researched it much but may be a shady prison industrial complex type thing going on.

Fuck welfare recipients who use drugs though…but fuck spending a dime to save a nickel as well.

[quote]H factor wrote:
Someone fix me. Or am I already seeing it correctly?

Admittedly this is something I hadn’t really thought of before that often. On the surface it makes a lot of sense to me. I realize that my views are sort of on the fringe of a lot of mainstream views when it comes to fiscal things. I also like to think I’m somewhat pragmatic and can discuss things I disagree with or realize things that aren’t going to change overnight.

  1. We give out too much money, but that system probably isn’t going to change drastically anytime soon.

  2. If we are going to distribute tax payer dollars to people for welfare, it would be great if that money was actually going to good use and not drugs.

  3. Knowing 1 and 2, drug testing makes a lot of sense and I was happy to see Kansas was going to start drug testing welfare recipients. Until I started reading about how much is spent to catch such a little amount of abusers. We all know if we are honest that abuse is going to happen in any system.

http://www.kansascity.com/2013/12/26/4714700/kansas-follows-missouris-path.html

Is it a waste of taxpayer resources to go after people who may be abusing taxpayer systems? Is catching the few bad guys these programs seem to catch worth the big cost? I’m having a very difficult time with my thought process here.

I would like for the most part the discussion to be centered around the testing and it’s worthiness in terms of money. We can do the “this is why we shouldn’t have welfare in the first place” in another thread and we have done that over and over anyways. [/quote]

  1. That’s the problem.
  2. If it has to be “distributed” by someone else, you can be sure that it’s not being put to good use. How does one determine good use for another?
  3. Drug testing welfare recipients makes no sense, but it does open up the opportunity for government to do anything it wants to those it owns. To be fair, government welfare makes no sense under any circumstance. If the funds for welfare are going to be taken/given, it should be based on income/wealth…otherwise, it makes no sense to allow government to control welfare. The very reason government supposedly had to step in and take over charity was that the private citizens were unable to handle it.

Raise your hand if you a think nice, single mother, or her children would be allowed to starve by a church or other private charitable organization. Nope. Charity only(generally) “fails” those who fail themselves, and that is what government has claimed to attempt to correct. Now that government has a hard time doing that(that being supporting those who make no effort to better themselves), it wants to make its failure more palatable, without admitting it has failed to do better than its subjects, or making it difficult to justify stealing more of their money.

If it can convince its subjects that it should be drug-testing welfare recipients, it will be able to take even more money from them. Better still, it can continue to generate hatred toward those who receive the funds it steals. Few will blame the thief, most will blame those it helps.

[quote]NickViar wrote:

[quote]H factor wrote:
Someone fix me. Or am I already seeing it correctly?

Admittedly this is something I hadn’t really thought of before that often. On the surface it makes a lot of sense to me. I realize that my views are sort of on the fringe of a lot of mainstream views when it comes to fiscal things. I also like to think I’m somewhat pragmatic and can discuss things I disagree with or realize things that aren’t going to change overnight.

  1. We give out too much money, but that system probably isn’t going to change drastically anytime soon.

  2. If we are going to distribute tax payer dollars to people for welfare, it would be great if that money was actually going to good use and not drugs.

  3. Knowing 1 and 2, drug testing makes a lot of sense and I was happy to see Kansas was going to start drug testing welfare recipients. Until I started reading about how much is spent to catch such a little amount of abusers. We all know if we are honest that abuse is going to happen in any system.

http://www.kansascity.com/2013/12/26/4714700/kansas-follows-missouris-path.html

Is it a waste of taxpayer resources to go after people who may be abusing taxpayer systems? Is catching the few bad guys these programs seem to catch worth the big cost? I’m having a very difficult time with my thought process here.

I would like for the most part the discussion to be centered around the testing and it’s worthiness in terms of money. We can do the “this is why we shouldn’t have welfare in the first place” in another thread and we have done that over and over anyways. [/quote]

  1. That’s the problem.
  2. If it has to be “distributed” by someone else, you can be sure that it’s not being put to good use. How does one determine good use for another?
  3. Drug testing welfare recipients makes no sense, but it does open up the opportunity for government to do anything it wants to those it owns. To be fair, government welfare makes no sense under any circumstance. If the funds for welfare are going to be taken/given, it should be based on income/wealth…otherwise, it makes no sense to allow government to control welfare. The very reason government supposedly had to step in and take over charity was that the private citizens were unable to handle it.

Raise your hand if you a think nice, single mother, or her children would be allowed to starve by a church or other private charitable organization. Nope. Charity only(generally) “fails” those who fail themselves, and that is what government has claimed to attempt to correct. Now that government has a hard time doing that(that being supporting those who make no effort to better themselves), it wants to make its failure more palatable, without admitting it has failed to do better than its subjects, or making it difficult to justify stealing more of their money.

If it can convince its subjects that it should be drug-testing welfare recipients, it will be able to take even more money from them.[/quote]

Agree on 1, but not the thread for that debate. I see what you’re saying on point 2, but cant most agree that housing/ food is better use than drugs? I would think so. Hence the reason for the thread. Really I was hoping ( and still am) for the strong counterpoint to my thinking, but haven’t seen it yet. Just another list of things for ks taxpayers to try and fix like abortion lawsuits and voter fraud.

[quote]H factor wrote:
cant most agree that housing/ food is better use than drugs? [/quote]

-I can. I also believe a diet of meat, vegetables, and water is far superior to one of Cheetos, Chips Ahoy, and Dr. Pepper. However, I can’t make that decision for others. There are already laws(tons of them, in fact!) to punish drug users in this country. If the entity given the responsibility for enforcing those and eliminating drugs has failed there, why expect it to do better with drug testing welfare recipients?

[quote]H factor wrote:
Is it a waste of taxpayer resources to go after people who may be abusing taxpayer systems? Is catching the few bad guys these programs seem to catch worth the big cost? I’m having a very difficult time with my thought process here.
[/quote]

Forgot about this paragraph…

Yes, it is a waste. Catching people would not be worth the cost. If 100 people receive welfare, and 99 get cut off after being caught with drugs in their systems, the government is not going to give back the tax money used to subsidize those 99. You are already out the money taken for welfare, it would be absolutely idiotic to give the government EVEN MORE money to fund testing programs.

I don’t know how things work in the States, but in Canada there is usually case workers that handle these things.
For drug testing, leave it up to the discretion of the case worker as to whether or not the person should be tested based on if they have a hunch that that person is using, or criminal record with drug conviction, something like that, don’t just do everybody.

It is more on the war on drugs , the approach is nonsensical . If some one has a problem with drugs it should be dealt with medically . If everyone had access to clean drugs that would mitigate a lot of the medical problems we have . If drugs were legal price would make them very cheap and remove the criminal element .

Rather than a War on Drugs we need an America for sensible drug policy

[quote]pittbulll wrote:
It is more on the war on drugs , the approach is nonsensical . If some one has a problem with drugs it should be dealt with medically . If everyone had access to clean drugs that would mitigate a lot of the medical problems we have . If drugs were legal price would make them very cheap and remove the criminal element .

Rather than a War on Drugs we need an America for sensible drug policy [/quote]
Sort of like what Nixon was doing. Reagan changed it because the war on drugs became linked with the Cold War.

[quote]zecarlo wrote:

[quote]pittbulll wrote:
It is more on the war on drugs , the approach is nonsensical . If some one has a problem with drugs it should be dealt with medically . If everyone had access to clean drugs that would mitigate a lot of the medical problems we have . If drugs were legal price would make them very cheap and remove the criminal element .

Rather than a War on Drugs we need an America for sensible drug policy [/quote]
Sort of like what Nixon was doing. Reagan changed it because the war on drugs became linked with the Cold War. [/quote]

I don’t think Nixon had it right . I think a few different countries are really trying to get it right . America IMO is way too punitive in many areas including drug policy . I don’t get it .

AZ Republic in today’s edition claimed $65.43 a day per prisoner . WTF that is more than food stamps fuck that is more than Unemployment , but no one says shit about the millions of nonviolent drug offenders

It’s a global issue led by America http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/War_on_Drugs

Under Nixon drug addiction was treated as an illness and it worked to reduce addiction as well the crime related to drug use. More funding when to treatment than law enforcement. Reagan changed that with his whole “Just Say No” BS and CIA support of the Sicilian Mafia which controlled the heroin trade. It’s no coincidence that the shutdown of heroin clinics coincided with the rise of the Corleone mafia.

Nixon started the whole ignore fact and manufacture evidence to support his own views

http://www.csdp.org/news/news/nixon.htm

Marijuana is at least 70% of the war and it is a real war on drugs

60,000 people since 2006 in Mexico have died as a result of this war and that is just Mexico . We have Afghanistan, Columbia Venezuela and the list goes on

What crime, other than possession, is associated with drug use? Any crime supposedly associated with drug use is due to them being illegal. It could also be related to the when X is outlawed, only outlaws will X phenomenon.

[quote]NickViar wrote:

What crime, other than possession, is associated with drug use? Any crime supposedly associated with drug use is due to them being illegal. It could also be related to the when X is outlawed, only outlaws will X phenomenon.[/quote]

When you make a weed more valuable than gold you are going to have many problems . The majority of crimes are because of the war on drugs not the drugs

[quote]NickViar wrote:

What crime, other than possession, is associated with drug use? Any crime supposedly associated with drug use is due to them being illegal. It could also be related to the when X is outlawed, only outlaws will X phenomenon.[/quote]
Theft, for one. Crackheads need money so they have sticky fingers and they will steal anything even, in my case, a garbage can. Next question.

[quote]zecarlo wrote:

[quote]NickViar wrote:

What crime, other than possession, is associated with drug use? Any crime supposedly associated with drug use is due to them being illegal. It could also be related to the when X is outlawed, only outlaws will X phenomenon.[/quote]
Theft, for one. Crackheads need money so they have sticky fingers and they will steal anything even, in my case, a garbage can. Next question. [/quote]

The cost of drugs is greatly increased by the war on drugs. Those willing to steal are not deterred from drug use by laws. Not only that, a drug using thief can get his sentence reduced by snitching on those he purchased drugs from. The drug user also has a built-in excuse to society for his theft. He’s no longer a normal low-life, he’s now a victim of those nasty old drug dealers-they’re the problem, not him.

Let’s say I like to eat chocolate, but I know eating too much chocolate will make me too unhealthy to purchase more. What are the chances I’m going to eat so much I turn in to… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ih8iuHKbcXk ?

Now, let’s say I do eat myself out of employability. Am I going to steal chocolate? Possibly, but I’m going to get myself killed or arrested pretty quickly. And since I’m stealing for no reason, my sentence is going to be harsh-I’m nothing but a low-life thief. But wait, the Lord of the Manor decides to outlaw chocolate. Now the Lord of the Manor can either hold me in jail forever, for the crime of possessing chocolate, or release me with a criminal record. This further decreases my employability and I am forced to continue stealing to support my habit. However, next time I’m caught stealing, I can snitch on the man who sold me the chocolate, as well as other chocolate users. The Lord of the Manor will then allow me to serve either no, or a very light sentence. I’m now a victim of my “addiction,” not a real criminal.

Before, there was a high risk-high reward relationship between my theft and chocolate use. Now, there is a low risk-high reward relationship between the two.

*I am aware that the man in the video would obviously not be worried about eating himself out of employability…but how many hims are there?