Food stamps... how much do we really pay?
  • beambeam
    Posts: 1,579Member

    Now I hate frauders but going on and on about how expensive it is, how much of our taxes go into these (much needed) programs, how lazy and horrible and oh the abuse... well let's just take a look at how much really goes into these programs.... 

    http://www.examiner.com/article/a-person-making-50-000-a-year-pays-10-cents-a-day-taxes-for-food-stamps


    A person making $50,000 a year pays 10 cents a day in taxes for food stamps

    election 2012
    July 28, 2012
    By: Lou Colagiovanni

    • National Defense $247.75 / 24.9%
    • Health care -- $235.81 / 23.7%
    • Job and Family Security -- $190.05 / 19.1%
    • Net Interest -- $73.63 / 8.1%
    • Veterans Benefits -- $44.77 / 4.5%
    • Education and Job Training -- $35.82 / 3.6%
    • Natural Resources, Energy, and Environment -- $19.90 / 2.0%
    • Immigration, Law Enforcement, and Administration of Justice -- $19.90 / 2.0%
    • International Affairs -- $15.92 / 1.6%
    • Science, Space, and Technology Programs -- $9.95 / 1.0%
    • Agriculture -- $6.96 / 0.7%
    • Community, Area, and Regional Development -- $4.98 / 0.5%
    • Response to Natural Disasters -- $3.98 / 0.4%
    • Additional Government Programs -- $78.61 / 7.9%

    The category needed for examination is "Job and Family
    Security", which comprises 19.1% of all of the $995 paid in. In the
    future I will examine other categories in more detail. The breakdown of
    the $190.05 is listed below:


    • Unemployment insurance -- $22.88 / 2.3%
    • Food and nutrition assistance -- $36.82 / 3.7%
    • Housing assistance -- $19.90 / 2.0%
    • Earned income, Making Work Pay, and child tax credits -- $32.84 / 3.3%
    • Supplemental Security Income -- $18.91 / 1.9%
    • Federal military and civilian employee retirement and disability -- $43.78 / 4.4%
    • Child care, foster care, and adoption support -- $5.97 / 0.6%
    • Temporary Assistance for Needy Families -- $6.96 / 0.7%
    • Railroad retirement and additional income security -- $4.98 / 0.5%

    As is evidenced above, despite a person paying $191.05 for "Job
    and Family Security", only $36.82 of that is going towards "Food and
    nutrition assistance."

    Therefore, a married person with one child who makes $50,000 a year
    will pay $36.82 in taxes to ensure the food stamp program is fully
    funded. But wait, there is more. That $36.82 is not only for food
    stamps. Indeed, that money is allocated to two other programs that
    include the school lunch program, and the special supplemental food program for women, infants and children. Keep in mind, this comprises the totality of the costs associated with the program including administrative.


    The breakdowns for how the $36.82 is allocated is not readily available, but do the math.


    $36.82 divided by 365 days = 10 cents a day.


    Consider the context. A person who is paid $50,000 a year earns, on
    average, $136 every 24 hours. Meaning that in a little over six hours,
    in the example where a person is paid for every hour of their life in
    perpetuity, that person would be able to pay for their entire yearly
    contribution to ensure that hungry people are fed.


    By the way if you are curious as to what percentage 10 cents is while being compared to $136 a day the number is: 0.0735%

    All of this information, and more, is freely available to the public and can be found on The White House's official website.

    A broken heart is a rite of passage and, looking back, I must have wanted one pretty badly. "Kick me," I demanded, and when somebody finally did, I burst like a cheap piñata. - DAVID SEDARIS
  • Rawrchu
    Posts: 516Member
    This article really bothers me for several reasons:
    1. I'm a single parent household of 3 making less than the 50k per year despite my "career" and college education.
    2. Somehow, I didn't qualify for EIC credit or any of those working parent credits this year despite pay cuts, raised insurance expenses, etc. So I made lesson money, but paid considerably more in taxes. How'd that happen?
    3. I can barely make ends meet just with the basics. Internet is pretty much my only "extra".  We haven't even had television for over 8 years because I simply can't afford the bill.
    4. I was once on food stamps and received more in food stamps than I needed. I ate better on food stamps without worrying about the expense than I do now or ever have while not on food stamps. 
    5. I was also on WIC and always had more cheese and milk than my children and I could ever eat. 
    6. I know too many people that manipulate and defraud the system. Yes, I know of them. I've spoken to them. I've heard their stories about how easy it is. 
    7. 10 cents a day isn't much in the scheme of things, but $36 could buy my son a pair of shoes. 
    8. It's not just 10 cents a day, it's the 10 cents plus everything else. It's the unemployment insurance, the housing assistance, the TANF, it's ALL of it, combined that kills us. 
    I'm definitely not saying to get rid of food stamps. I think it's integral to our country and I don't know what I would have done without them back in the day. However, it's seriously flawed and really, this article isn't about food stamps as much as it is about justifying a messed up system and trying to deny the problem. Really, what was the point of the article?  To tell Americans to quit whining because they only pay 10 cents a day towards food stamps?  Was it meant to shut us up? My son has needed shoes for awhile now and keeps having to wait. I'm pretty sure he's never owned more than one pair at a time. Don't tell me to suck it up because it's only a dime a day. I have a "career", I'm a contributing member of society, and I can barely get by. Fix the broken system. 

    Ok, rant over. Hope I didn't offend anyone too much. 
    ;;)
  • beambeam
    Posts: 1,579Member
    @Rawrchu - no offense taken. Loads of understanding. I don't get it either - struggling with a decent job. BUT. Somehow I think we really need to look at what "we" (I don't pay taxes in the usa, did in the past though and I still vote) are spending and where the money is going in order to fix the system and stop blaming the frauders for all that is wrong in the system... and that $36 isn't JUST for food stamps ...so the cost of fraud (which I am not condoning at all) is very small in comparison to all the hoopla we give it. No, I don't think we should suck it up but I think we could benefit by looking at the whole picture of where "our" money goes instead of concentrating all our effort and energy (and anger) on the frauders.
    A broken heart is a rite of passage and, looking back, I must have wanted one pretty badly. "Kick me," I demanded, and when somebody finally did, I burst like a cheap piñata. - DAVID SEDARIS
  • AnonUser27
    Posts: 1,698Guest
    It pisses me off because I have paying into this shit all my working life and now, even though I am unemployed I still don't qualify for anything because I make to much on unemployment. If I never worked at all I could get housing assistance, food assistance, a free cell phone, help with a car and insurance, free health insurance and the list go on and on.
  • BeerWenchBeerWench
    Posts: 2,819Member
    @bean curious, how do you vote but not pay taxes? That seems like a contradiction of our 'system'
    :¦:-•:*'""*:•.-:¦:-•** She who leaves a trail of glitter is never forgotten**•-:¦:-•:*'""*:• -:¦:-
  • beambeam
    Posts: 1,579Member
    @BeerWench - I am an American. I was born in the USA . My American nationality or "citizenship" gives me that constitutional right.

    @MassHysteria - I was self-employed for 17 years which meant I paid into unemployment and other social services never having the right to be protected myself. When I wanted to change jobs and went to see if any assistance was available, well, my boyfriend made too much which made me mad because he was not in any way financially responsible for me, we don't have joint taxes or accounts of anything, but since we lived together la-di-da.   


    A broken heart is a rite of passage and, looking back, I must have wanted one pretty badly. "Kick me," I demanded, and when somebody finally did, I burst like a cheap piñata. - DAVID SEDARIS
  • Emmie
    Posts: 277Member

    And isn't much of the food stamp funding from the state?  So maybe just 10 cents of the federal tax goes to food stamps, but more of the state tax?

    And honestly, I work hard, and don't at all mind helping those who can't help themselves.  Or helping healthy adults through a rough patch where they can't find work.  But I do not like knowing that I am paying for food, housing, cell phone and cash assistance for those who are capable or working to help support themselves...causing them to be dependent when they could be working.

    Not to mention that many of us are providing other assistance, for example I provide free room and board to 2 extra family members who are struggling.

    Whew...rant over.

  • beambeam
    Posts: 1,579Member
    @Emmie - Good point about state taxes... I'll do some checking around.
    A broken heart is a rite of passage and, looking back, I must have wanted one pretty badly. "Kick me," I demanded, and when somebody finally did, I burst like a cheap piñata. - DAVID SEDARIS
  • beambeam
    Posts: 1,579Member
    @Emmie - I'm looking but not finding any anything only that Food Stamps (SNAP) is a federally funded program...

    Anyone have any insight one this?
    A broken heart is a rite of passage and, looking back, I must have wanted one pretty badly. "Kick me," I demanded, and when somebody finally did, I burst like a cheap piñata. - DAVID SEDARIS
  • beambeam
    Posts: 1,579Member
    I found this : http://www.cbpp.org/cms/index.cfm?fa=view&id=2783

    about 1% of state tax is used for assistance (TANF and other programs)
    A broken heart is a rite of passage and, looking back, I must have wanted one pretty badly. "Kick me," I demanded, and when somebody finally did, I burst like a cheap piñata. - DAVID SEDARIS
  • Not_hisAnymoreNot_hisAnymore
    Posts: 285Member
    20 years ago I was getting $187 in food stamps a month. I was also on WIC so that covered milk, eggs, cheese, peanut butter, butter and cereal. I was grateful for it but humiliated using it. Since that time I went to school and to work and owned multiple businesses and paid my taxes. I have a bigger issue with the bulk of my tax dollars going to the defense department than our own people and services i.e. police, fire, rescue, schools etc.
  • Rawrchu
    Posts: 516Member
    It's a very broken system and I don't think our efforts and energy are focussed on the frauders as much as it is the fact that the system is broken. There are way too many honest people that are struggling and need help right now, yet they make too much for help. There are many who are receiving assistance that receive more than they need. There are others who manipulate and defraud the system. There are those that won't work so they can receive support (these people are NOT counted in the numbers of fraud  because you really can't track them). It really goes on. This system, no matter how you look at it needs to be fixed. It needs to be adjusted and balanced. 

    I live in a community of about 75,000 people. Our main employers are the school district, the hospitals and fruit company. Everyone knows the state of the schools throughout the nation. Schools are letting employees go and not rehiring for positions or teachers despite the growing number of students. I honestly don't know how the medical field is doing. From the few that I know in that field, it seems fine. The fruit company filed bankruptcy and is struggling to stay open. The lumber mill shut down. My town is struggling and there is nowhere for the people to go for a job without relocating. It's a three hour drive for the next town that's equivalent in size (it's actually bigger). All other towns are less than half the size and are very rural. There are foreclosure signs EVERY WHERE. 

    Why is it that so many hard working Americans are losing everything? Why isn't there help for people before they get to that point?

    Also, it's been pointed out that the 3.7% isn't just for food stamps. That's correct, it's also for for the school lunch support system and WIC. The school lunch system is set up on the same system as food stamps so basically if you receive food stamps, your kids get free lunches. Why?  You're already receiving free food at home. If someone could give me some perspective on that, I'd really like some. It seems to be double dipping into the system. I do think that there is a little more wiggle room in the school lunch system in that there is a window of students who receive reduced priced lunches whose families do not receive food stamps. No problems there with helping those kids and families. There are also a large number of schools that give free breakfast to ALL students because the school has such a high poverty rate (again, no problem with this) and I know of a very small number of schools that also provide free lunches and free dinners (none in my community). 

    As citizens, I think it's our duty to question taxes and how things are being spent. As I said previously, I still don't understand the point of the article. It shows the breakdown of taxes, but only talks about the break down of food stamps, but doesn't explain why that's the focus. What about the other areas?  I also believe that if you talk to most Americans, it's not the "fraud" that has them upset about food stamps, it's the broken system. I still say that many people are getting too much in food stamps and WIC while others that could really use the help don't qualify or receive barely any assistance. It's also easy to not work and receive assistance and let's be honest, the amount of drug users on food stamps is high. Drug abuse is linked with poverty which isn't to say that it doesn't exist in every social circle, but is prevalent in lower income homes. How many drug abusers continue to use the system so they can get free food and free housing and continue to use their drugs?  A LOT. Does this constitute fraud?  No, but it definitely is a reflection of a broken system. My cousin told me that while she was an addict, the only "bill" she had to pay was her rent. All utilities, food, medical, etc. was provided.  How much was her rent?  Less than $2 a month. She pointed out that you could find $2 from lose change on the streets so what incentive was there to work?  I've heard other stories just like hers. Again, broken system. 


  • AnonUser26
    Posts: 1,069Guest
    I would comment, it wouldn't be pretty, and I would be heartbroken if I didn't stay on topic.

    @Rawrchu
    @BeerWench

    What they said.
  • AnonUser34
    Posts: 1,796Guest
    Don't get me started on this, I will say we are a family of 4 DH made less then 50k and is in school, not only did we pay more then $3,820 in taxes but our health insurance just went up a extra $120 a month.. Actually everything went up. I don't mind paying for food stamps and Medicaid but I do mind paying so much for SS knowing that we're not going to get it ourselves. And I mind paying out over $600 a month on insurance health/Dental etc. but yet have crapy coverage and still have to fork out a ton of out of pocket money, which is why DH has had a broken tooth for 2 years UGH!!!!

    Edit: We also make to much for any kind of help.. And there's been times that bills were not paid to put food on the table for my kids!
  • beambeam
    Posts: 1,579Member
    @FInallyFree2BMe - Agreeing with BeerWench is making a comment. I paid taxes for 10 years. I still declare my taxes (to the IRS) that I pay (in France) every year... So you're saying someone who doesn't earn enough to pay taxes shouldn't be allowed to vote? Well yes that what you are both saying - no taxes no vote.

    Because I don't earn enough in a foreign country to pay us taxes :

    Generally speaking, if you live and work outside of the United States,
    then you can exclude all or part of your foreign wages from US taxation.
    To qualify for the foreign earned income exclusion, you must :


    If you qualify, you will be eligible to exclude up to $95,100 annually
    in foreign wages. The amount of the foreign earned income exclusion
    changes each year, and here's the maximum allowable exclusions for various tax years.


    And yet there is a man who has Swiss Banks accounts and off-shores in order to pay fewer taxes in the country where he lives and works and yet that guy is running for president... yeah no wonder the system is fucked up.
    A broken heart is a rite of passage and, looking back, I must have wanted one pretty badly. "Kick me," I demanded, and when somebody finally did, I burst like a cheap piñata. - DAVID SEDARIS
  • Quietmom
    Posts: 2,986Member
    To me it pisses me off that I do pay into this and have always had a job while on food stamps yet I'm ridiculed and humiliated by people bitching that THEY'RE paying for my food and paying for me not working and mooching off the system. Excuse me? Judgmental much?! Just because some people defraud doesn't mean we all defraud the system. It's crap that everyone constantly bitched at me because I paid taxes just as much as they did! I contributed and put into the system and have just as much right to it as anyone else. I made just below qualifying income level and better believe I used it. And at any moment anyone with a $50,000 income could be put in the situation where they need it. There's my rant.
    Like a river and a waterfall, a strong person channels their own path...
  • SammieSammie
    Posts: 8,345Administrator, Moderator
    I removed some comments from this thread that had zero to do with the topic at hand. If there is a personal issue, please deal with that via PM. Thanks!

    community-manager


  • Quietmom
    Posts: 2,986Member
    Oh and while we are talking about oh the fraud, oh the abuse... What would you think of me?

    I have a Coach purse (a Christmas gift from 2005!)

    and an iPhone (graduation gift, thank you dad!),

    Nike shoes (thank you work for providing every worker with work shoes)

    and American Eagle shirt and pants (woohoo for Goodwill... I got five name brand outfits for less than $15!!)

    And my kids are both in nice clothes (yet again Goodwill is pretty nice if you dig..)

    And I hop into a nice new car (not my freaking car of course!!)

    .... Yet I pull out a Foodstamp card. First snotty fucking bitch comments I get are about oh how I'm defrauding the system. How can I have nice clothes, an iPhone and a nice purse and still qualify for foodstamps? Bitch!! Want me to get judgmental?! How about you quit being a fucking cart Nazi and worry about your own problems!
    Like a river and a waterfall, a strong person channels their own path...
  • Quietmom
    Posts: 2,986Member
    Stupid phone posted before I quit... Ya know, only a portion of our taxes goes to pay for welfare. Yes, it's flawed but until someone actually does something about it, not much you can do about it. That right there is WHY people who do defraud the system do it. Because they CAN and no one is doing anything about it. People are aiming their judgments at the WRONG people! If I could get free housing and everything else, better believe I would too but would you really want to live in the projects? Have you ever BEEN there and seen what living rent free is really like? Not that pretty. I'd rather pay my rent even though I DID qualify for free housing. I'm so sick of people bitching about a system when nothing is going to be done about it.
    Like a river and a waterfall, a strong person channels their own path...
  • meandmy243meandmy243
    Posts: 9,474Member
    We use food stamps and even with is working we still qualify and NEED them bills are huge.. our power is over 400
    let them eat cake! because id rather have pie!!!
  • beambeam
    Posts: 1,579Member
    @MellowYellow - I hear you on that... I've never had any assistance or unemployment or anything but I don't judge anyone using food stamps - even to buy steaks and beers (and in high school I worked in a grocery store).

    I don't judge because not everyone has a handicap as visible as my mom's was (and my mom didn't except any assistance, she should have but she didn't). And my dad worked in vocational rehabilitation - people with different disabilities looking for work or going to school. Their disability is not always obvious, as some are physical, some mental, and some are like heart conditions which don't show on the outside. Some have had drug problems, or made bad decisions and ended up in a bad situations, some have gambled - ah but according to the angry mass we should just let those people crumble up and die, they don't serve to live anyway.
    A broken heart is a rite of passage and, looking back, I must have wanted one pretty badly. "Kick me," I demanded, and when somebody finally did, I burst like a cheap piñata. - DAVID SEDARIS
  • bluemom
    Posts: 176Member

    As foster and adoptive parents, my children qualified for food stamps. I was always amazed at the attitude I got from cashiers and other shoppers. I always felt like I had to justify myself. Especially if I was buying a special treat, like ice cream or things for a birthday dinner. And yet, I still find myself judging people who are buying sodas and expensive junk foods with foodstamps. I try to remember that we all are responsible for our own food budget. If someone wants to use their food money to eat steak for a week and then eat beans and cornbread for three weeks, then that is their business. No matter where the food money comes from. We never truly know another person's circumstances.

    My sister once berated me for using almost all of my foodstamps for my foster daughter's birthday. She wanted crab legs and steak. We had an elaborate birthday cake, sodas and pricey appetizers. My sis felt that it meant we didn't really need that grocery money, and we shouldn't be getting it. Maybe she was right, but I didn't feel one bit guilty about giving that little girl a great birthday, it was probably the first one she ever got.

  • BeerWenchBeerWench
    Posts: 2,819Member
    beam said:

    @FInallyFree2BMe - Agreeing with BeerWench is making a comment



    I guess I missed my statement... I simply asked how you vote and not pay into the system. I don't recall making any statement one way or the other on his subject.

    :¦:-•:*'""*:•.-:¦:-•** She who leaves a trail of glitter is never forgotten**•-:¦:-•:*'""*:• -:¦:-
  • sunnymommasunnymomma
    Posts: 2,171Member
    I personally could care less how or why anyone needs food stamps. the key word is need, without them they might starve. what they buy with them I also dont care about. I hear people bitch all the time about ppl on food stamps buying junk food. steak, lobster. So fucking what??? they are in need for what ever reason and they deserve to eat what ever the hell they want!!! Who knows that one meal of steak could result in the rest of the week eating ramen noodles! Thats what happens when I splurge on something for groceries and im not currently on food stamps. Really how anyone else pays for food isnt my business, how I pay for mine and what I buy is my business. I dont mind paying taxes into a system that helps others out, it may help me out someday, who knows. Im just grateful that I live somewhere that has federal and state resources to rely on when needed. As far as abusing the system its wrong, thats why its called abuse!!! Next time I hear such ranting and raving about people on foodstamps using "my money" blah blah blah Im throwing the .10 at them and the link to that article! 
    I am me, and I am loved
  • deviltwinsmommadeviltwinsmomma
    Posts: 2,743Member
    @sunnysmom @mellowyellow and @bluemoon. You guys rock.
    There should NOT be any shame on using a food stamp or WIC card. We as a society spend too much time judging others, instead of looking at your own flaws. I would love to know if any of these people that do judge these people on food stamp How many these judgemental ppl have ever volunteered at a soup kitchen, a battered women shelter besides the fuckin holidays when your heart SUDDENLY hurts for those "broken" people? Seriously, there is FAR worse shit goin on in our great country of ours than some mother buying cupcakes for her kids with foodstamps.
    How bout we all take a stab at our current healthcare problem....mmmmm??

    Now my rant is over :P
    my mother used to sing me a song. It went like this: "Life is short, life is shit, and soon it will be over.
  • Charlotte_SometimesCharlotte_Sometimes
    Posts: 1,761Member
    @MellowYellow

    I am glad you mentioned the housing thing.   I have lived in 'the projects' back when DS20 was a baby/toddler.  In fact, I moved to a nearby small town away from my city so that I only had to wait six months for housing vs. the three to five year wait in my city.  And I got out of there and off housing as soon as possible.  It was no fucking picnic and not worth the reduced rent. Cops were there ALL THE TIME, fights, drugs, shootings, and this was in a nicer small town and a "nicer" housing project! 

     And it's not "free".  At the time, my total cash income was $300 a month from child support.  My rent was $100 a month out of that, then I got food stamps for me and DS and WIC.   The remaining $200 a month had to cover laundry, gas, diapers (I mainly did cloth diapers), clothes, toiletries, phone bill, electricity.   There are various housing programs, they are all, generally (and for sure in most cities in Texas) very hard to qualify for and have long wait times, and the one I was on (Section 8) still  required the tenant to pay 1/3 of their income towards rent.  I moved in when he had just turned a year old and moved out by the time he was 3 or so. 

    The same "not worth it" factor applied to the brief period I was on TANF after splitting with my ex.  It was just 2 or 3 months but the 'requirements' for work search for someone on TANF are kind of insane, really.  I was getting about $200 a month for TANF for two kids and I was required to do their work search activities all week long to keep the benefits, but with no consideration for the fact that it was costing me gas money I didn't have and required childcare I could NOT AFFORD (this was summer and the kids were 5 and 10).  How is someone going to cover gas and childcare with $200 a month and the worst part was, I couldn't do a job search my way (resumes on the internet), they want business cards and face to face contact for each job search activity to "count".  If you do any online searching you must do it at the Texas Workforce office on their computers (and no kids are allowed).  How is this logical? 

    Anyone who has job searched lately knows that even service jobs usually want an online application or you use a kiosk inside the store and you don't get to see the manager 9 times out of 10.  And then you have to get some manager to sign some paper saying you are on welfare and must have proof that you are job searching?  It's a rather humiliating first contact for you and a potential boss.  It's all about taking a "hard line" on welfare and not about acutally helping people find work.  I gave UP the TANF and did better selling stuff on ebay.  That was the most stressful $200 a month I'd ever received in my entire life.  I can see why women take up prostitution.  Seriously!

    The other thing I want to address because some people don't seem to understand this or know this or think about this;  the allotment for food stamps for a family of 3 is the same regardless of that family's composition.  So the family with one adult and a 3 year old and a 1 year old is getting the same as the single parent with two teenaged boys.  Or the family with 2 adults and a sixteen year old gets the same as a single mom with twin toddlers.   Obviously this makes a difference;  anyone who has fed a teenager understands this.

    THIS is a good way to understand why someone may need food stamps and also need free lunches at school.  When I have received food stamps in the past when my kids were older, I would have LOVED to send their lunch with them because I hate the crap they pass off as "food" in their school lunches but there was no way the food stamps covered food at home AND food for school.  

      And when I was on food stamps when my son was a baby and it was just me and him, I always had food stamps left over because he was just a toddler.  They don't' eat much!  So yeah, I will admit that back then I sold food stamps so that I had more cash for things like laundry soap and toilet paper and maybe some cash for him to ride the mini train at the park or to buy a toy or two for his birthday.    

    There was never any "left over" when I was on food stamps and my boys were older, because, as I said, the allotment is the same regardless of age.  It was much much more of a struggle to make that amount last through the month and it involved lots of ramen noodles.

    I didn't' mean for this to be so long but I wanted some "other side of the story" stuff to be out there so people know and understand.
    "But a lesson must be lived in order to be learned" Ani DiFranco, Manhole
    "Screw you guys! I'm going home." Eric Cartman
  • AnonUser34
    Posts: 1,796Guest
    @deviltwinsmomma I rock too, Thank you very much B-) I actually said I don't mind paying taxes for food stamps and I've bitched a lot on SM about people judging others for needing help.. I live in Michigan, 90% of people here have been on FS at one point in time, No joke!!! I grew up with a single mother who never had help with child support and put herself thur school. If my mom would not have been able to get food stamps myself and brother would not of eaten.. And thank god for getting Christmas gifts from the Angle Tree foundation, Seriously made our Christmas.. I grew up poor as dirt so I know how it feels to be looked down on, I'll never do that to another person. My rant was about paying to much on "health insurance" because fuckingA we do and I'm sick of it... Now tell me I rock!! ;)
  • Charlotte_SometimesCharlotte_Sometimes
    Posts: 1,761Member

    We use food stamps and even with is working we still qualify and NEED them bills are huge.. our power is over 400



    At our last place (house) our electric bill was often $350 a month.  Fucking crazy.  Even in winter, when you averaged out the bill for the year it was NEVER less than $250 a month. People assumed we kept it ice cold in summer... and we didn't!  We had window ACs and an old, poorly insulated house and most of the time it was just "not hot", nowhere near "cool" in summer.... it was always hovering around 80 degrees (but 100 outside so still a relief) and in winter we rarely used anything besides electric blankets.  And it was only 1100 square feet.  Then our water ran $80 a month and we never even watered the yard or washed cars or any of that.  Just basic showering, cooking, and laundry.  So all of that plus our mortgage payment of $600 a month made that place really unaffordable and in a crappy neighborhood to boot and it had stuff wrong we could never ever afford to fix.  So I had to explain all of this to my mother when she wanted to know why we were moving to an apartment that is $700 a month (water paid, avergage electric around $125) and make her see how we are saving money!

    Sorry, that's a bit of an off topic rant there.
    "But a lesson must be lived in order to be learned" Ani DiFranco, Manhole
    "Screw you guys! I'm going home." Eric Cartman
  • Rawrchu
    Posts: 516Member

    The other thing I want to address because some people don't seem to understand this or know this or think about this;  the allotment for food stamps for a family of 3 is the same regardless of that family's composition.  So the family with one adult and a 3 year old and a 1 year old is getting the same as the single parent with two teenaged boys.  Or the family with 2 adults and a sixteen year old gets the same as a single mom with twin toddlers.   Obviously this makes a difference;  anyone who has fed a teenager understands this.

    THIS is a good way to understand why someone may need food stamps and also need free lunches at school.  When I have received food stamps in the past when my kids were older, I would have LOVED to send their lunch with them because I hate the crap they pass off as "food" in their school lunches but there was no way the food stamps covered food at home AND food for school.  



    @Charolette_Sometimes, thank you for this. I was genuinely hoping someone could explain it to me. School lunches piss me off because they suck so bad and it's typically the poor kids that receive them - the kids that need good nutrition the most are getting fed crap but that's a whole other rant. 

    I hope I'm not coming off as anti-food stamps because I'm not at all. Your comments were right in line with my point of it being a broken system. I also get people selling their food stamps. I remember when I was on them feeling so frustrated because I had extra food stamps, but I couldn't figure out how to buy tampons and toilet paper! I don't think people should be embarrassed to use them or WIC, but I know I was as well. The judgement and the looks were everywhere. At least they don't have those awful huge check like papers anymore that listed each WIC item you could purchase and you had to have a separate order for each check those. Those were HORRIBLE. I assume they are on a debit like card like food stamps are nowadays? 

    I'd still like some more perspective from other as to why food stamps and free school lunches are both necessary. I'm not trying to judge at all, just getting perspective and understanding. 
  • MegsueMegsue
    Posts: 1,846Member
    Those people that have never been on food stamps clearly don't get it AT ALL. There is nothing luxurious about it. It's a supplement, that's it! It doesn't pay for a months worth of groceries, it helps a lot, sure. I never expected my family to live off of Ramen and fucking ketchup when I got food stamps and I certainly don't expect anyone else to live like that either. Just because you qualify for help doesn't make you a second class citizen. Why don't any of us deserve steak or ice cream?

    90% of the people I know getting them are WORKING. They're not sitting at home snorting pills and drinking beer and beating their kids, they get up and work. They pay taxes. When I was on it I was working full time and going to school full time. I had also spent 6 years in the muthafucking military, and don't think for a second that those snotty cart creepers that looked down their noses at me didn't hear about it. This shit makes me angry...so I'm going to stop here.
  • LLBLLB
    Posts: 5,622Member
    @rawrchu actually wic does still have those checks!
  • Rawrchu
    Posts: 516Member
    @LIb are you serious???  Those things are HORRIBLE! I haven't seen anyone use them in I don't know how long so I assumed they didn't have them anymore. Maybe I simply don't pay attention.   :-/
  • AnonUser34
    Posts: 1,796Guest
    @Lib I was on WIC when I first had DS2 for a year and I had a card, just like a debit card. I was also on food stamps for 6 months after having my DS which was also a card..

    And let me just say, for someone like me who does not take help from others, ask @BeerWench I often let my pride get in the way.. But when it comes to feeding my kids, you gotta do what you have to do. Yea, it was humiliating " for me " Assholes always looking in my cart, giving me the stink eye and judging me. People who have never been poor or have needed the help will never get how it feels. It's not a good feeling to not be able to feed your own kids!
  • LLBLLB
    Posts: 5,622Member
    Really? @kittykat I got wic for my twins for formula and it was checks that was almost 6 years ago. They still have those same darn checks! I wish they would do a debit card because those checks are a PITA! But alas I still deal with them because like you said when it comes to feeding your kids you do what you gotta do!
  • AnonUser34
    Posts: 1,796Guest
    @Lib the card was bright orange with WIC written across the front. Maybe it's different in other States? But it was so much nicer then those huge checks.. If you turned it just the right way no one could tell, it looked just like a debit card.
  • LLBLLB
    Posts: 5,622Member
    I so wish they would implement a debit card here!
  • pdxmama
    Posts: 1,467Member
    @Llb WIC still uses those damn checks here too. I always assumed that a debit card wouldn't really work bc its administered so much differently than fs which gives you a certain amount of money every month to spend on whatever you want, as long as it is food. But WIC benefits don't have a set monetary value, just a specific list of things that you can buy every month. And detailed, down to how many ounces, which brands are acceptable, etc. I don't know how they can even make that work with a card, but obviously they do in some states.
  • beambeam
    Posts: 1,579Member
    Saw this on fb and thought it appropriate ;)

    image
    A broken heart is a rite of passage and, looking back, I must have wanted one pretty badly. "Kick me," I demanded, and when somebody finally did, I burst like a cheap piñata. - DAVID SEDARIS
  • pdxmama
    Posts: 1,467Member
    I love that person who commented on fb! Absofuckinlutely awesome.
  • Quietmom
    Posts: 2,986Member
    Love the comment and @rawrchu we still use those awful checks here too and have to have a separate order for each item!!! I quit using WIC about 6 months ago and I HATED using them because they were both a pain in the ass and people were total assholes in line!
    Like a river and a waterfall, a strong person channels their own path...
  • etherieletheriel
    Posts: 790Member
    Rawrchu said:

    I'd still like some more perspective from other as to why food stamps and free school lunches are both necessary. I'm not trying to judge at all, just getting perspective and understanding. 




    They are also both still necessary because there are many kiddos out there whose family may not qualify for food stamps but will qualify for school lunches as the qualifications are somewhat different.

    Also, the process for applying for school lunches is much easier and far less humiliating than trying to get food stamps. I would imagine that many parents figure that if their kids are getting breakfast and lunch at school, then they'll be able to make it ok and won't have to go through the humiliation and abasement of dealing with a food stamp case worker.

    Another reason that many would apply for free school lunch but not food stamps is that in most schools now, there are systems in place in the cafeteria line that keep the general population from knowing who is getting free lunch, but at the grocery store, everybody can see you're using food stamps...more humiliation.

    If I'm not supposed to do it, how come I can?
  • momtomany74
    Posts: 294Member
    Yep-we still have those huge arse paper checks here too for WIC.
  • SassySassy
    Posts: 4,488Member
    I am bothered that many people on food stamps eat better than I can afford to. Yes, the cost per person may not be that much, but why should someone on food stamps be able to get steak and lobster?! Fuck that. There should be limits!
  • momtomany74
    Posts: 294Member
    Sassy said:

    I am bothered that many people on food stamps eat better than I can afford to. Yes, the cost per person may not be that much, but why should someone on food stamps be able to get steak and lobster?! Fuck that. There should be limits!




    As people here have stated, the food stamp card is not neverending.

    If someone splurges on lobster, then the rest of the month they could very well be stuck eating ramen.

  • Charlotte_SometimesCharlotte_Sometimes
    Posts: 1,761Member

    Sassy said:

    I am bothered that many people on food stamps eat better than I can afford to. Yes, the cost per person may not be that much, but why should someone on food stamps be able to get steak and lobster?! Fuck that. There should be limits!




    As people here have stated, the food stamp card is not neverending.

    If someone splurges on lobster, then the rest of the month they could very well be stuck eating ramen.



    Or at the very least, that splurge will have them eating much more moderately all month.  The problem with saying there should be limits, is who decides what is "too much" and what is okay?  What if that steak was half off, in the meat section where stuff is about to go bad?  What if the box of fancy chocolates is someone's only birthday gift for their teenage daughter? 

    Again, it's too hard to "know" circumstances and try and be the judge.
    "But a lesson must be lived in order to be learned" Ani DiFranco, Manhole
    "Screw you guys! I'm going home." Eric Cartman
  • momtomany74
    Posts: 294Member
    @Charlotte_Sometimes I don't want to derail this topic but just wanted to say you're fast becoming my new idol ;)
  • Mommyliciousx4Mommyliciousx4
    Posts: 1,768Member
    The general attitude of "I had to suffer, so why shouldn't they?" Is very sad.
    People always say I don't want my kids to go through what I did, why can't that compassion be felt for others as well?
  • SchweddyBallsSchweddyBalls
    Posts: 4,891Member
    Fuck it......I'm in!!!!!
    We are receiving fs again for the first time in 20 years. Back then I was a single mom, going to school and it sucked ass!!!! If you had asked me a year ago if I thought we would be using them again I would have told you, NEVER AGAIN!!!!
    But, Jeff's not getting any better, the housing market is still in the shitter and I don't like trying to decide if my kids NEED food or heat. (Side note, our gas was off for a bit......is also sucked ass). I broke down and applied, we qualify. I have worked since I was 15 1/2, paying my share of taxes, and up until 5 1/2 years ago, it was 50+ hours a week. It was a LUXURY to become a SAHM(ty, jeffe)......and it has been a HUGE pain in the ass trying to find another job these past 6months.
    As far as steak and lobster......puhhhhhhfuckingleeeze!!!!!! First, that's a fucking water cockaroach, no one needs to worry about me EVER spending their tax money on that...or crab (fucking spider), shrimp(I don't eat anything with feelers).....I have a rule......more than four legs, not for human consumption!!!!!!!
    We eat well, BUT that's because I make what we get work!!!!!!! I shop my ass off......coupons, sales, discount stores, bulk buys.......I make our laundry soap, bodywash, shampoo(kids refuse to try baking soda)....I DONT buy convience foods.....grow my own herbs and some vegis and BARTERBARETERBARTER my happy fat ass off for tons of other things we need/want/use......
    Judge me and my EBT card all you want......your just jealous of my fabulous fucked up life!!!!!! Pfffffftt......
    I'm the nicest person you will ever meet, UNTIL you fuck with me or the betches I love.......
  • KiinuKiinu
    Posts: 1,233Member
    My food stamp card helps us buy the expensive food my child and husband need to survive. DH can not subsist on pasta and sandwiches, he needs meats and veggies and rice, he is Lactose intolerant and a Celiac. DS has something far more alarming wrong with him. They thought it was an EGID, but the tests say it's not, but his body reacts like he does have it. He can't have certain foods without getting very sick, and even the foods that don't make him sick aren't properly absorbed. DS needs to eat meats and starches. He can't process Fructose, At All. So nothing made from a plant. I should ideally only buy aspartame sweetened foods.

    Because we stick to these diets, neither of these problems are obvious at the grocery store. But I am the woman with a cart full of Steak, Chicken, Fish, Eggs, Rice, Veggies, Cotton Candy, expensive cookies, name brand chips, name brand almost everything, because off-brands add gluten or corn syrup. And you'd best believe when Passover comes around I will go out and buy a cart full of yellow capped coca-cola to give DS over the course of the year as a treat for the times he's left with nothing at a get together. And I will buy it all with my FS card.

    I'm sure we look like bad people, but we're doing what we have to to live, DH works a lot and pays taxes, but he and DS are expensive people to feed.
  • GritsGrits
    Posts: 4,370Member
    We have the WIC cards here, too @pdxmama @Llb @momtomany74. I think the way it works is kind of like billing WIC. Just like the checks, you get a set amount of approved items that are deducted from the card. Then you get a printout that gives you a "balance" of available benefits. I prefer the card to the checks 10 times over, and ours even looks rather non-descript. There's no neon colors or giant letters that make it easily identifiable as a WIC card. The EBT card is still rather obvious, but I've gotten over the Snotty McJudgeyPants that I see at the grocery.

    I have to budget my grocery funds the same way everyone else does. We don't live high on the hog nor do most people I know that get SNAP benefits. @Charlotte_Sometimes pointed out, the amount of benefits is based only on income and family size. It doesn't account for the ages of the people in the household. So while we may have a little extra now, when Lil Man moves on to baby food and then solids, and then table food, the amount of benefits stays the same, but out cost per capita goes up. I would love to meet the person who glorified existence on state benefits. They should be shot. The whole notion of being able to live like a fucking rock star while receiving benefits is ridiculous. It can't be done, NTM the fact that the whole process is demeaning and humiliating. Let's not generalize so that the whole population of people receiving food stamps is painted to be a lazy, worthless people who never held a job. If we're going to generalize, let's at least be accurate and say that people who get state benefits have sucked back every ounce of their pride to ask for help to feed/seek medical care/provide a home for their families. It's not something most of us want, but it is something we need.
    "I believe in being strong when everything seems to be going wrong. I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day, and I believe in miracles." ~Audrey Hepburn
  • Rawrchu
    Posts: 516Member
    Kiinu said:

    My food stamp card helps us buy the expensive food my child and husband need to survive. DH can not subsist on pasta and sandwiches, he needs meats and veggies and rice, he is Lactose intolerant and a Celiac. DS has something far more alarming wrong with him. They thought it was an EGID, but the tests say it's not, but his body reacts like he does have it. He can't have certain foods without getting very sick, and even the foods that don't make him sick aren't properly absorbed. DS needs to eat meats and starches. He can't process Fructose, At All. So nothing made from a plant. I should ideally only buy aspartame sweetened foods.

    Because we stick to these diets, neither of these problems are obvious at the grocery store. But I am the woman with a cart full of Steak, Chicken, Fish, Eggs, Rice, Veggies, Cotton Candy, expensive cookies, name brand chips, name brand almost everything, because off-brands add gluten or corn syrup. And you'd best believe when Passover comes around I will go out and buy a cart full of yellow capped coca-cola to give DS over the course of the year as a treat for the times he's left with nothing at a get together. And I will buy it all with my FS card.

    I'm sure we look like bad people, but we're doing what we have to to live, DH works a lot and pays taxes, but he and DS are expensive people to feed.



    It really isn't right that people worry about being judged and feel like "bad" people for buying what they need. Personally, I'd much rather see someone with a cart full of the foods that you mentioned rather than the boxed foods or frozen foods just because I have become such a food nazi due to my own health. I'm full blown allergic to dairy and can't have any products with whey or casein in them and I'm also celiac. As you said, @Kiinu, that diet is very expensive. There are many times that I don't eat because I just don't have the food and my standby is fried eggs...and let's face it, you can only eat so many fried eggs!