June 30, 2012
Will American Liberals Ever Wake Up?By W.A. Beatty
America is in the throes of a presidential campaign that presents real hope for the future of America (Romney) versus the same-old, same-old (Obama). While it appears right now that Obama and his socialist policies will lose in November, America will still be faced with many problems that have crept into society in the past fifty years.
While America has many liberal-caused problems, let's examine just three of them: welfare, race relations, and education.
Welfare: In his State of the Union address on January 8, 1964, President Lyndon B. Johnson declared "war on poverty." Johnson's speech led Congress to pass the Economic Opportunity Act, which established the Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO) to administer the local application of federal funds targeted against poverty. Since then, the federal government has spent approximately $16 trillion on welfare. Welfare includes, among other programs, the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP), the former food stamp program, and unemployment insurance.
In 2011, the Subcommittee on Regulatory Affairs, Stimulus Oversight and Government Spending of the House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and Government Reform held a hearing on the issue of "Duplication, Overlap, and Inefficiencies in Federal Welfare Programs." At that hearing, Patricia A. Dalton, the chief operating officer of the General Accountability Office (GAO), testified that the GAO could not identify all existing welfare programs in the various federal departments and agencies or determine how much they cost.
She said further that she and the GAO could not give a specific number of welfare programs or even "hazard a guess" as to what percentage of those programs are actually accomplishing the purposes for which they were created.
America now spends 15 percent of its Gross Domestic Product on welfare. Welfare is now the third most expensive government spending program. Welfare spending has outpaced spending on Social Security, Medicare, education, and defense.
And welfare rolls and spending continue to expand. Welfare spending increased on SNAP alone between FY2008 and FY2011 from $39.3 billion to $75.3 billion. Over the next 10 years, welfare spending is projected to cost taxpayers $10.3 trillion. The Obama administration is now working to expand welfare further, spending $2.5 million on an ad campaign to get more people on welfare.
While campaigning in 2008, Obama said that "the war in Iraq is costing each household about $100 per month." But applying the same spending criteria revealed that welfare cost each household $560 per month in 2009 and $638 per month in 2010.
So where are we now? A study in April 2012 by the Cato Institute says that America spends nearly $1 trillion each year to fight poverty. Since Obama took office, federal welfare spending has increased by 41 percent. But despite increased spending, the poverty rate that remains at nearly 15 percent, roughly where it was in 1965, when President Johnson declared his War on Poverty. In fact, the poverty rate has never fallen below 10.5 percent. The Cato Institute study also says that current programs are focused on making welfare recipients more comfortable -- providing more food, better shelter, and health care for poor people -- rather than proving the tools that will help poor people escape poverty.
Race Relations: Attorney General Eric Holder, in 2009, said that Americans are cowards when it comes to discussing race. Well, Mr. Holder, I am not a coward, so here is my discussion. Too many blacks have succumbed to the idea of "blaming" somebody and/or something for their problems. They have learned that idea from, among others, Rev. Jesse (love child) Jackson and Rev. Al (Tawana Brawley) Sharpton. For most blacks, their favorite target for blame is "whitey." Their favorite word has become "racism." Any criticism of anything they don't like is "racist." Black cultural integrity can be good, but not when the culture is manufactured in the name of a blame-game.
From New Century Foundation's The Color of Crime, we learn:
We also learn that whites constitute 72.4 percent of America's population but constitute 35.6 percent of all recipients of Aid for Dependent Children (AFDC). Blacks constitute about 12.9 percent of America's population but constitute 37.2 percent of AFDC recipients. One argument loudly forwarded by black "leaders" is that whites make up the majority of welfare recipients. That fact is true from an absolute numbers perspective, but not from a percentage of the American population perspective.
What does all of this mean? Blacks are going to have to save themselves.
Blacks are not helped by the claim that all their problems are racially motivated. Black-on-black crime is not the fault of "whitey." Out-of-wedlock births are not the fault of whites. High dropout rates among blacks are not the fault of whites. The solution is not to cry "racism" and blame everything on whites. And blacks won't find a solution to their problems by appealing to the government.
Welfare programs have done a lot to suppress black families by subsidizing family fragmentation and promoting multi-generational dependency. So cast off your shackles of government dependency and work to correct problems. Will you receive help from "whitey?" Yes, but we non-guilt-ridden whites won't do it if the answer is going to be more government, guilt, and charges of "racism" every time you don't like what's being offered as a solution. Black problems aren't solved by naming streets after Martin Luther King, Jr. or declaring a national King Holiday or a Black History Month. These are liberal crumbs to appease the black community, but have any of these actions actually helped blacks solve any problems?
To paraphrase FDR, "the only thing you [blacks] have to lose are your chains of dependency and victimhood."
Education: People who attended public school in the 1960s and early 1970s experienced an educational system far different from that of today. In the '60s and early '70s, teachers still had authority to actually teach and discipline students. If a student turned in failing work, teachers didn't hesitate to assign an F or even hold a student back a grade.
Educators believed that education was more important than making students feel good about themselves. It wasn't uncommon for a teacher and/or school administrator to use corporal punishment on disruptive students when necessary.
Today's teachers have no authority. They aren't allowed to use corporal punishment, or to do anything that will injure student self-image or self-esteem. Many public schools have become a training center for a quite liberal social agenda.
As a result, confidence in public schools has fallen to a new low of 29 percent. That number was 58 percent in 1973.
Americans lost more and more confidence in public schools as schools turned away from sound teaching and toward social training grounds, as they replaced teaching sound moral values with decadence and promiscuity, as they rewrote American history and replaced it with secular lies.
The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), a division of the U.S. Department of Education, periodically administers the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) to American students in grades 4, 8, and 12. In all subject areas, private-school students consistently score well above the national average. According to the NCES, in 2006, in grades 4 and 8 for both reading and mathematics, students in private schools achieved at higher levels than students in public schools. Only through "adjusting" for student attributes such as ethnicity, family income, and English language proficiency, as well as the skill and experience of the teaching staff, was the NCES able to get public school student performances up to or higher than private school students.
As a result, more parents are opting to put their kids in private schools, where they can be taught the basics, but also can be taught morals and values they wouldn't learn in public schools.
Will liberals ever wake up and face the facts that their ideas and policies don't work? How many times must they be shown that policies they implement have never worked? You would think that fifty years would be long enough for them to view the results of their labors. But in the face of what their policies have wrought, their only response is that America has not spent enough money! For liberals, evidence be damned -- it's their policies that count.
Dr. Beatty earned a Ph.D. in quantitative management and statistics from Florida State University. He was a (very conservative) professor of quantitative management specializing in using statistics to assist/support decision-making. He has been a consultant to many small businesses and is now retired. Dr. Beatty is a veteran who served in the U.S. Army for 22 years. He blogs at: rwno.limewebs.com.
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