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News Should government benefits be conditionally granted?

  1. Feb 12, 2012 #1
    IMO -it would be reasonable and very easy to make benefits conditional to abiding by the law - wouldn't it?

    Perhaps we can break this discussion of Government benefits being conditional of abiding by the law into a new thread - as discussion has gone beyond the scope of the Romney thread?

    OP continued from - https://www.physicsforums.com/showpost.php?p=3759836&postcount=465
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 12, 2012
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 12, 2012 #2
  4. Feb 12, 2012 #3


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    That welfare spending increased during a recession but is predicted to go down when the economy recovers?
  5. Feb 12, 2012 #4
    Hasn't our total workforce shrunk by 4-5% - what if welfare spending levels off as it has in the past - how does Government police the system?
  6. Feb 12, 2012 #5
    It already is for the most part. Isn't it? If you're referring to drug testing for potential recipients of temporary cash benefits, then it seems that the numbers from the Florida experiment have shown this to be an unimportant consideration.

    We already have several unnecessary, imo, federal bureaucracies. One of which is the DEA.
  7. Feb 12, 2012 #6
    I think the DEA could be combined with ATF - they often work together and seem a good fit.
  8. Feb 12, 2012 #7
    I'd like to see the DEA just abolished. (But of course this could only be done in conjunction with some other big changes/actions that aren't currently too popular.)

    Back to your OP. What programs, specifically, are you proposing additional conditions for? And what might those additional conditions entail in terms of increased bureauocracy, increased or decreased government expenditures, etc.?
  9. Feb 12, 2012 #8
    I think personal responsibility is important. If someone needs assistance from the Government with housing, medical, food, education, transportation, utilities, communications, and cash in their pocket - shouldn't they be expected not to break the law?
  10. Feb 12, 2012 #9
    Yes, of course I agree with you. My question is: doesn't the government already require that welfare recipients be law-abiding citizens? And if you think that additional conditions should apply, then what conditions and wrt what aid programs?
  11. Feb 12, 2012 #10
    I don't know of any assistance programs that end because someone is arrested or tests positive for drugs (outside of the FL program) - do you?

    Even when sentenced to jail - members of a household can still collect. We even have hiring incentives for ex-convicts.
  12. Feb 12, 2012 #11
    I'm not sure what the rules are. You started the thread.

    My current opinion is that it's not an important consideration. Like foreign aid, it's negligible wrt the national budget. So what if a small percentage of cash welfare recipients spend that money on drugs?
  13. Feb 13, 2012 #12
    Let's label this IMO. I don't know if anyone else has experience in this area? I've personally loaned money to people promising they'll buy food for their families - then spent it on drugs or gambling. Some people are beyond help until they hit rock bottom. Unfortunately, the welfare system prevents that from happening - instead, it allows them to continue.

    Another problem with welfare is idle time. Productive people have less time to get into trouble. Perhaps another element should be some type of a mandatory job training program in exchange for the benefits?
  14. Feb 13, 2012 #13
    Most assistance programs I'm aware of are directed towards children. I don't think I can advocate taking money away from children based on their parents misdeeds.
  15. Feb 13, 2012 #14


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    Aren't they already required to abide by the law? At any rate, would corporations also be subject to this requirement?
  16. Feb 13, 2012 #15


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    Well, single mothers with children make up a great deal of our welfare assistance programs. Personally, I think it would be better to find ways to elevate those people instead of trying to increase the bureaucracy that they have to go through.
  17. Feb 13, 2012 #16
    This twists my words into an amazing contortion. I asked whether the fact that an action was voluntary could be considered the sole reason to negate a person's protection against searches by the government and somehow my question has been married to the question in the title of this thread.

    As for this thread, are we talking about all government benefits, or just welfare? Are we talking about enforcing all laws, or just drug laws? Are we talking about searches with a warrant or without? If you deny someone welfare benefits because they had a poppy seed bagel in the morning before a random drug test, you could save thousands of dollars. But if you did a thorough examination of the financial records of the executives who get bailouts and found out that they forgot to report a poppy seed bagel in their tax return you could save trillions. Which do you propose?
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2012
  18. Feb 13, 2012 #17


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    I agree 100%! I would support a bill like that and would even call it the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 .

    For the actual law (instead of a summary): http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/ofa/law-reg/law_index.html [Broken]
    Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2017
  19. Feb 13, 2012 #18


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    Jimmy: a prospective employer requires you to take a drug test before hiring you: voluntary or invasion of privacy?
  20. Feb 13, 2012 #19
    That's the other thread. This thread is different. However, a private company is different from the govt. You made that distinction yourself in that other thread.
  21. Feb 13, 2012 #20
    I don't think we're talking about second hand smoke or a random poppy seed - and 3 strikes is probably the end compromise in the real world.
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