I wish more people would see this: while begun with the best of intentions, the welfare state only traps people in poverty, providing an anchor that weighs against bettering their own lot.
President Obama recently took part in a poverty panel at Georgetown University. By D.C. standards, it was ideologically balanced since there were three statists against one conservative (I’ve dealt with that kind of “balance” when dealing with the media, as you can see here and here).
You won’t be surprised to learn that the President basically regurgitated the standard inside-the-beltway argument that caring for the poor means you have to support bigger government and more redistribution.
Many observers were unimpressed. Here’s some of what Bill McGurn wrote for the Wall Street Journal.
The unifying progressive contention here is the assertion that America isn’t “investing” enough in the poor—by which is meant the government isn’t spending enough. …President Obama…went on to declare it will be next to impossible to find “common ground” on poverty until his critics accept his spending argument.
I think this argument is nonsense. We’re spending record…
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