america demonizes its poor: ronald reagan, sam brownback and the myth of the "welfare queen" - the jewelry store
Governor of Kansas, April
Sam Brownback signed a new set of welfare rules called the HOPE Act, Orwell-style prosperity.
The measure "provides an opportunity for success," Brown Buck said.
It's about the dignity of work, helping families shift from the meager power of relying on the government to the self
It is enough to develop the skills to find a well.
Remuneration for work and career.
However, as critics quickly point out, it is clear that the new law is more about limiting the decisions of the poor than building their careers.
The HOPE Act prohibits Kansas welfare recipients from withdrawing more than $25 a day, also specified in jewelry, tattoos, massages, spas, underwear, tobacco, movies, Bail Bonds, arcade games, visits to swimming pools, fortune tellers, amusement parks or ocean cruises.
Lawmakers in Missouri soon began discussing whether to ban food stamps (
Officially called Supplementary Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
Lobster, biscuits, chips, energy drinks and steak.
Federal rules may make this restriction difficult to implement, as Florida officials have discovered after multiple mandatory use of invasive drugs --
Testing the system for welfare recipients, but the federal government can hardly count on opposition.
Last year, Congress expanded its list of benefits restrictions, banning cash benefits from casinos, liquor stores or strip clubs.
As of April,
There are three countries that impose additional restrictions on the use of electronic interest transfers (EBT)
The same is being considered in 18 other states.
State lawmakers have been piling up on these rules for years, creating a wave of bans with drugs
Refusal of aid is the most popular option ban.
Things have gotten so bad that the Huffington Post published an article entitled "bill of Wisconsin Republicans pushing forward to control how welfare people eat and pee.
When an article in August titled "The new law requires welfare recipients to sweat to prove how hard it is for them to find a job" slammed the new rules, the line between irony and news never seemed so detailed.
Lobster Dinner and drug binge.
After that was the morning at the spa.
Maybe an ocean cruise, then a quick stop at the fortune teller before heading to the jewelry store.
Can policymakers really believe that welfare recipients may waste their government benefits on such luxury goods?
In the United States, the outrageous stories that demonize the poor and the myths are rarely short.
Even at the best of times, the poor are vilified in popular narratives, and at times when inequality and insecurity increase, it is easy for the poor to be the scapegoat.
When economic anxiety spreads, political entrepreneurs begin to sell the same old stories and slanders, and as new social problems need to be addressed, they polish them --A difficult solution
Creating an image of a luxurious and irresponsible lifestyle, critics of the media and government laugh at the stupidity of public aid programs, and laugh at the counter-productive and costly effects that these projects have on the country.
Public officials are required to show that they are serious, and many are eager to lead this legislative charge.
Nevertheless, the strange new aid rules seem difficult to understand for many liberal observers.
They quickly pointed out that there is no basis, no reason to ask for new restrictions, which may cause great pain.
Given the meager power offered, why bother to ban lobster dinners and sea voyages, as the public interest will never be able to fund such an excellent purchase. (
In 2014, the average monthly cash allowance for families in Kansas was about $230, compared with $227 in Missouri;
In 2013, families received an average of $124 a month for food stamps.
68 and $128 in Kansas. 04 in Missouri).
Our understanding of poverty and public policy, what these legislators might want to accomplish, they just hate the desire of the poor to have the right --
Wing ideology consumes their ability to think reasonably about social policy, and many liberals react to harsh new laws as if they were just the latest right-wing --
Stir up the anger of the day and post stories about them on social mediamy-head comment.
It is fair to say that new welfare restrictions are unnecessary and cruel.
But we should not confuse this criticism with political analysis, why political analysis should pursue such policies, who they are good for, who they are bad for, and their power in the US political economy.
Whatever happens to the heart and mind of a particular lawmaker, the parental welfare rules that are being debated in the States today are far from novel and, in fact, far from unreasonable.
They are a new variant of the old practice, dedicated to supporting work compliance, serving business interests, imposing ethical programs on the poor, and strengthening broader political alliances and agendas.
In order to understand them, we need to put them in a historical context and clarify the impact of the conflict on "welfare" on political and economic organizations.
Ignoring welfare restrictions as crazy or stupid manifestations of political extremism is missing the important political, economic and cultural work they have done.
Today in the United States, three aspects of this work deserve special attention.
Let's face it, "wrote literature critic Hortense Spillers in 1987.
"I am a marked woman, but not everyone knows my name. . .
I describe a chaotic identity trajectory, a gathering place to invest and privatize in the National Treasury of wealth.
My country needs me and I have to be invented if I am not here.
"The well-known Queen of welfare, the crime Super-same is true
Predators and illegal immigrants
Tangled pathology, cracked baby, and the myth of lifeless dad.
These are one of the greatest red songs in our country's treasure house, and are indispensable to the neo-liberal era of American capitalism.
As in the past, the image now has a powerful ideological function.
In recent decades, as the wealthiest Americans have mobilized to hoard wealth and power, the middle class and the working class have entered a long period of preconceived and anxious.
Now, as in the past, the elite has launched a story about parasites and undeserving poor people to divert public anger towards themselves.
Lazy and criminal "recipients" abuse the goodwill of hard-working taxpayers and are provided as a scapegoat for New difficult times and a ready-made explanation of financial shortages.
The racial story of a menacing lower class draws the public's imagination, while lobbyists and government officials on the periphery rewrite policies and administrative procedures to redistribute wealth upwards.
The welfare queen and street criminals are brandishing the redistribution of progress, cutting social protection and defending justice for ever
A more stringent model of policing and social control.
It must therefore be understood that controversial policy proposals play a key role in building this political landscape.
For many observers, it is easier to see how ethnic stereotypes and stigma images of the poor are used to advance the policy agenda than to recognize the opposite
A strong way of policy and its rationale helps to foster racial understanding and image of the poor.
While public policies distribute material benefits and burdens, they also represent a symbolic politics.
The policy of forcing the poor to work sends a strong signal that they will not work unless forced to do so.
The recommendation to take special measures against irresponsible and criminal acts against social groups tells the public how members of these groups behave.
Unnecessary restrictions on the way welfare recipients spend money to demonize their goals (
Widely regarded as poor and black or Latino)
And focus the public's attention on reforming what they call illness.
The more eccentric these policies are, the more distracted citizens are from being truly unjust, making them passive audiences on the political stage.
In this sense, the lobster is just the latest Red Herring in order to divert public anger and justify the fight against the lobster.
As they carry out this political work, active social control policies also spread the established racial, gender and class prejudices, often in a way that updates content and strengthens power.
As many critics have pointed out, the repeated ritual of taking a tough attitude towards the poor is a "dog-
In a society where a clear racist appeal is often condemned, racial resentment has been successfully mobilized.
Queen of welfare and mob of criminals"
Rigid paragliding that is abnormal and threatening the dark-
Make a symbolic promotion to a politics that does not dare to expose itself to racism.
Together, they sparked a strong debate about class, gender and racial bias, deepening the divisions between potential allies, as they paved the way for ugly party and policy goals.
With restrictions on gambling, drugs and luxury purchases entering the public consciousness, they reverse the reality of the lives of the majority of the poor.
They are confused by specific stereotypes, accusing single mothers who struggle every day to support their families of character and dignity.
A large number of women seeking benefits do so in order to escape abusive relationships.
Without the stain of "welfare", their efforts to free themselves and their children from dangerous situations may be seen as a courageous act of parental responsibility and independence.
Instead, the benefits of letting themselves shine prove their individual collective culture of irresponsibility and engagement dependency.
Women in welfare programs use drugs and have children at a rate lower than those of women in the total population, but don't mind the facts --
Political rhetoric and policies focused on changing "bad behavior" can easily reverse these realities.
The mysterious addiction known as "welfare dependency" is still a fascinating topic, although the vast majority of poor women are actively involved in paid labor. In the post-welfare-
In the era of reform, work is the norm for women to receive cash assistance or food stamps.
However, regardless of whether they receive assistance or not, these women are still stuck in the labor market
Only poor skilled workers
Wages and benefits.
Employers are lost by waiting vulnerable groups of workers who take turns to work in unpredictable and under-time situations with little chance of promotion.
For many poor women who are trying to get enough money together to live, welfare is usually just a source of income --
Replenishment of formal employment, informal work, sources of social support and other aspects.
However, the symbolic power of welfare masks everything else, making them dependent on the government and demonizing them as women and mothers.
However, observing these political functions and influences is not the same as explaining why bipartisan politicians return to the script of disciplinary welfare intervention over and over again.
To this end, people must pay attention to the strategic Party goals that these policy agendas serve --
Political means behind policy madness.
As we said in our recent book, discipline the poor (co-
Create with Richard Fording)
The political logic of these initiatives is deeply rooted in contemporary party competition.
It comes from defining, binding, and positioning the interests of the two major parties.
In an era when political parties are polarized and the government is deadlocked, turning to harsh poverty governance is an extraordinary cooperative, bipartisan matter.
Of course, Republicans lead the way.
Barry Goldwater's campaign of "Law and Order" for the presidency in 1964 led President Nixon to declare "fighting crime" and call for "cleaning up the welfare mess ".
President Reagan invented the iconic Cadillac, doubling in the 1980 s --
Promote the "Queen of welfare" campaign and mobilize law enforcement forces to carry out a new round of "anti-drug war ".
Republican candidates at all levels of government have gained significant political scores by calling Democrats a "criminal weakness" and eager to give alms to poor people who don't deserve it.
With Republicans successfully implementing the strategy, more than 1980 Democrats are increasingly eager to keep these political clubs away from competition.
With Bill Clinton and the rest of the centrist Democratic Leadership Committee taking the lead, Democrats are starting to push forward the revised version of the Republican idea and calling for a tough new approach to "underlying disease.
After Clinton promised to "end the benefits we know," which was at the heart of his 1992 campaign, he oversaw the abolition of federal welfare program assistance for families with dependent children, the creation of a difficult new behavior
Focusing on the welfare system, a series of policies and practical progress has been made in the construction of large-scale imprisonment.
Therefore, the color of punitive poverty governance has not been red or blue for many years;
It's purple, as the sociologist Joshua page says.
Nevertheless, the two main political parties still have different relationships with poverty, welfare and criminal justice. Get-
Within the Democratic Party, there are still serious disagreements over the difficult agenda and the potential to undermine fragile electoral and legislative alliances.
When the party abandoned its south wing and accepted the demands of the 1960-generation rebel civil rights movement, it produced a group of disgruntled white voters who had matured to accept the Republican pick.
Nixon's "southern strategy" used the opportunity to attract white voters below Mason --
Since then, Dixon line and Republicans have succeeded in deploying a racially chaotic image of society among the poor, a strong wedge against their opponents.
Today, Democratic leaders are still scarred by these experiences, and as a result, they are taking care of the concerns and criminal justice issues from the standpoint of anxiety and defense.
Their participation in the discipline of the poor is very large, but it is usually a thing of torture, in this case, terrible politicians are trying to avoid any "weakness" and at the same time appease the angry dissent of the left wing of the party's alliance
In contrast, the policy debate centered on the "sick poor" has a unique appeal to Republicans, helping to gather and consolidate the different factions in their alliance.
Like the previous New Deal Alliance, the Republican League that came to power after 1960
Mainly commercial interests, religious and moral conservatives, racist villains and neo-conservatives --
Not easy or obvious.
It relies on pressing the issue of division and focusing on the issue of solidarity that can be built.
In the process, the social chaos story of the racial "lower class" played a special role.
They can advance business goals by belittling taxes. and-
Transfer the system and provide the basis for arguments against incentives to protect people from market pressures.
It directly reflects the anxiety of neo-conservatives about the collapse of authority and aspirations of a powerful country that pursues moral goals.
It mobilizes racial conservatives through extensive discussion of "social chaos", linking welfare dependency and street crime with social protests, urban unrest and civil disobedience related to racial justice movements.
It is also consistent with the goal of social conservatives to promote a benign self.
"Traditional values" such as discipline, personal responsibility, work, marriage, etc ".
After decades of return, contemporary Republicans often do so out of habit. Welfare-
Bread of puffand-
Butter party politics, go-
Even if Republicans have not yet developed a broader, conscious strategy, they will be involved in the election script.
Today, in Kansas, Missouri and Florida, we have witnessed the use of dogs by parties.
Reflecting the structure of party competition and becoming the whistle politics of the system over time.
Politics of welfare-
Bashing is powerful in the symbolic sense, but also material.
Since the 1970 s, political victories have focused wealth and political power on the top of American society, and tax cuts for the rich have plunged state governments into a permanent financial crisis.
Today, government officials are under tremendous pressure to align their budgets with them, and with strong political opposition to raising taxes, it is foreseeable that the government will cut its efforts to vulnerable groups.
Public programs and welfare cuts are the most visible responses, but they are also most likely to cause opposition.
Policies designed to limit fraud and regulate the way interests are used can generally achieve the same goal --
Potential political responsibility to avoid a coldhearted.
"I support helping people in need . " "I just want to make sure that the people who really need them get the benefit and don't encourage the wrong choice to get them into poverty.
Frances Fox Piwen and Richard Crawford, in their landmark book, regulating the poor, first published in 1971, gave a strong analysis of how the stigma-based welfare rules drive welfare
While Planned benefits may still be in law, the power to prevent eligible persons from applying for benefits or to drive existing recipients out of the plan case may significantly diminish their availability and value in practice.
New welfare rules that openly promote stigma may demonize welfare use, and even the most desperate qualified people will refuse to apply.
Just as allegations of voter fraud can be used as an excuse for new rules restricting voting rights and access, the campaign to combat welfare fraud has produced new ways to reject applicants, threatening recipients with criminal punishments, and let customers accept all kinds of degrading problems and inspections --ups.
From this point of view, banning lobster dinners and family visits to public swimming pools is of greater material significance.
Over the past 20 years, a dizzying array of defamatory welfare rules and restrictions have had a huge impact on welfare participation rates.
Today, the percentage of eligible families receiving benefits from temporary assistance from needy families (TANF)
The program is only 40%-
Since the beginning of 1960, in the low-
Americans receive benefits in their income. In the mid-
1960, Piven and Cloward estimate that only about half of those eligible for public assistance received assistance.
By the beginning of 1970, more than 90% eligible persons had received assistance after the civil rights and welfare rights movement had achieved policy and legal victories.
It is worth noting that these higher participation rates continue to reach 1990, although government officials allow inflation to halve the actual value of benefits and begin to focus more on "bad behavior"
However, the federal welfare reform in 1996 was a game --changer.
A series of new behavioral restrictions and degrading procedures have emerged across the United States.
Predictably, the percentage of income
Between 1995 and 84%, eligible households receiving public assistance fell from 40% to 2005.
Although demand levels increased significantly during the Great Recession that began at the end of 2007, TANF caseloads remained largely stable at these low interest rates, which led most policy analysts to conclude that revenue-
The number of eligible families declined further.
In the years since the federal welfare reform, the TANF block grant, which provides financial assistance to poor families with children, has not been adjusted for inflation.
As a result, its purchasing power has decreased by about 25% since 1998 (
The first year of full operation of the project in the United States).
In 2013, federal government spending on TANF fell to $17 billion, the lowest level in 17 years.
There is no doubt that the steady accumulation of degrading rules and procedures, coupled with the repeated demonization of benefits themselves, prevents those in need from signing up for benefits and curbing welfare expenditures, reduce the financial pressure to tax the rich.
All of this poverty to those who are eligible for benefits but are not receiving benefits in our current age of mass imprisonment and criminal control what happens, and too many are being rolled into huge installations in the Cassel state.
However, most people do what the poor refuse to help: they join the ranks of the most desperate jobs --
Job seekers, willing to take on the worst job, afraid to do anything that can provoke anger at lower levels
The wage employers they rely on.
Over the past 40 years, neo-liberalism has become the default logic for poverty governance.
With privatization and transnational operations, the line between the state and the market becomes blurred
Industry cooperation has become the norm, and the country itself has been restructured according to market logic to support market forces and service-led market actors.
With the marketization of the country, its welfare business has been redesigned to create profitable venues for corporate investment and Employer Services.
So even if welfare programs continue to serve low-income people,
By excluding and expelling those in need to build the labor market, they have also become their own market for turning the poor into gold.
Private Welfare contractors today
Just like the private prison industry.
As a business to create profits, in welfare projects across the country, a wide variety of other market interests are gathered in banks with budget flows, hoping to translate social needs into income.
In fact, it is found that many of the new welfare restrictions introduced by the states are actually in order to transfer expenditures from the poor to the interests of the company and do not require much digging.
Today, for example, welfare programs in their thirties
Seven states charge for their services through EBT cards, through a system managed by private banks, providing benefits.
The loyalty of Kansas legislators to bank interests is even more evident, and under the HOPE Act, recipients can only withdraw $25 in benefits per day (
In fact, it's never been $20 a day on five ATMs. dollar bills).
The clause required repeated bank transactions and the government added
In addition to the bank's ATM fee, a USD fee is also charged and both charges are ensured to be deducted directly from the benefit amount of the benefit recipient.
The bank receives additional benefit funds to run the benefit delivery system and makes a profit from the large number of welfare recipients who lack bank accounts and are forced to open accounts with the contracting agency.
Similar stories accompany many new rules of conduct and monitoring procedures in national welfare programs.
For example, mandatory drug testing has repeatedly been exposed as a scam, with a very small number of welfare recipients testing as positive, and the cost of taxpayers exceeds any savings brought about by denial of benefits.
However, despite these frustrating results and a series of legal decisions that suggest that this requirement may not be constitutional, Republican lawmakers continue to push drugs --
Test system for welfare recipients.
In addition to being a political strategy, these terms create lucrative contracts for company suppliers.
The Florida government is one of the most notorious cases.
Rick Scott transferred his $62 million stake in the company.
Just three months ago, he told his wife that benefit recipients and state employees must be treated for drugs --
The test program is largely provided by the same Soltanic company.
When conservative lawmakers scoffed at what the poor had said about spending welfare on cruise ships and fortune-telling, we easily shook our heads in frustration.
However, we should resist the impulse of liberalism and regard these new welfare rules as unhealthy --
Informed extremism and goodwill
Facts that have been determined
The new regulations adopted by the state government reflect the important political power and do important political work.
They supported and mobilized the conservative Union to unite its different members against the common enemy of the poor who did not deserve it.
They have cultivated the understanding and resentment of the masses, which has changed the political landscape while splitting up potential allies in the struggle for social justice.
They make it harder for families in need to get assistance and try to suppress wages by pushing desperate people into the labor market.
In a welfare system that increasingly serves the interests of the market, they are the engine of corporate profits.
So, the strange welfare restriction is not a flaw in the political economy of today's social policy --
They are the defining features of it.