Conservatives Can Really Be Heartless Bastards
The U.S. economy has shed 7.3 million jobs in the past 23 months, the biggest hit to the labor market since the Second World War. (Just to keep up with the growth in the working population would have required the addition of around 3.5 million jobs during that time.)
Unemployment has more than doubled in the past two years, and is now over 10 percent. The dispiriting number rises to more than 1 in 6 -- 17.2 percent of working Americans -- when you include those underemployed against their will (working part-time, free-lancing, etc.).
And American households have lost $14 trillion in wealth in the real estate and stock markets since the crash.
Against that backdrop of very real pain, I want you to consider what kind of person would sit down, as John J. Miller did for the National Review, and write something like this about food-stamps, which are currently helping feed 1 out of every 4 American children [ht Tintin]:
Seems like there ought to be a stigma attached to the use of welfare. A little bit of shame can go a long way toward encouraging people to find jobs. The federal government may think it's doing people a favor by providing them with access to food, but it's doing them a disservice if it also robs them of the motivation necessary to break free from dependency.
Yes, an empty belly is just the incentive people need to get up off their lazy asses and go out to find one of those nonexistent jobs.
Allow me to point out that John J. Miller lives off the hand-outs of hard-right cranks and wealthy ideologues. He writes for The National Review, which has never turned a profit (founder William F Buckley once said that NR had lost over $25 million dollars over the years). Miller's latest book was a paean to a big-money right-wing foundation, published by another big-money right-wing foundation.
Perhaps if there were a bit of stigma attached to being a clown who earns his keep off of wingnut welfare, it would discourage Miller from being so dependent on the generosity of others. Parasite.
If Miller's name rings a bell -- he's a C-list right-winger --it's most likely the result of a much-mocked book arguing that we should regard France as our mortal enemy which he co-authored after the invasion of Iraq. It prompted a review in Foreign Affairs that began: "That a book as shoddy and biased as this one should be published by a reputable press is eminently regrettable."
You can buy a copy on Amazon right now for a penny, if you don't need it for food.