I got an email from Evan that I chuckled at but then nodded in understanding over. He wrote: "Dude, I need to stop reading budget/debt related stuff on facebook or I'm going to write a helluva rant on your blog. If I read one more complaint about supposed welfare queens from someone I think I'm going to break my computer."
Indeed. Most people that complain vocally about welfare don't know the first thing about it. Of course there are incentives to consider and things to debate and even disagree on. But the mythical welfare queen never really was true, and what a lot of people don't realize is that to the [limited] extent that it was true on rare occasions at one point in time, it has not been true since welfare reform in 1996. And it's so infuriating to hear idiots dump on low income families - often with kids that didn't do a damned thing to deserve the tough position they're growing up in - that I'm usually disinclined to even engage...
...then right after reading that from Evan I come across Don Boudreaux - not an ignorant man - asserting that people should be "ashamed" to take welfare and that they lack the "values" of his parents for doing it. I bit my tongue when a couple eye-roll-worthy posts on Keynes came out of Don and Russ recently, but this one is really infuriating.
Some people seem to think our safety net - which we are blessed as a country to have the resources to provide - is a vacation hammock. And what's worse - reasonable people are happy to concede the disincentive effects associated with certain programs to support low income families. This isn't a controversial point - it's a quite reasonable point. But often, ill-mannered or outright ignorant people could care less about the work and reform that people have put into addressing these problems over the last two decades. To them it's still about welfare queens.
UPDATE: Share thoughts, but if you bad mouth low income people or welfare recipients in the comments I'm going to delete it.
13 minutes ago