I have copied an article from USA today below. My comments are in red.
This article does a great job of illustrating how clueless The Republican Party has become on fiscal policy. Terrorists are NOT the largest threat to my kids (Kayla and Graydon); Republican fiscal insanity is...
Federal aid programs expand at record rate.
Dubya calls himself a "Compassionate Conservative." I call him a big spending Liberal...
By Dennis Cauchon, USA TODAY A sweeping expansion of social programs since 2000 has sparked a record increase in the number of Americans receiving federal government benefits such as college aid, food stamps and health care. A USA TODAY analysis of 25 major government programs found that enrollment increased an average of 17% in the programs from 2000 to 2005. The nation's population grew 5% during that time.
Isn't it interesting that The Republcians are signing more and more people up for these programs. I wonder if they are hoping they will vote Republican in future elections?
It was the largest five-year expansion of the federal safety net since the Great Society created programs such as Medicare and Medicaid in the 1960s. Spending on these social programs was $1.3 trillion in 2005, up an inflation-adjusted 22% since 2000 and accounting for more than half of federal spending. Enrollment growth was responsible for three-fourths of the spending increase, according to USA TODAY's analysis of federal enrollment and spending data. Higher benefits accounted for the rest.
The Republicans are spending MORE then HALF of the entire Federal Budget on social programs... Remember The Contract with America? The Republicans do not...
The biggest expansion: Medicaid, the health care program for the poor. It added 15 million beneficiaries over five years to become the nation's largest entitlement program.
Old people vote, enough said...
Not a factor: Social Security and Medicare. Those retirement programs will not see their enrollment explode until 79 million baby boomers start to become eligible for Social Security in 2008 and Medicare in 2011. Imagine what will happen then... Programs that grew over the past five years are aimed at the under-65 population, especially families earning less than $40,000 a year. For example, the number of mostly low-income college students receiving Pell grants rose 41% over five years to 5.3 million.
Goes along with Dubya's goal of spending more and more on Education. If it is broken let's spend more money on it...
Robert Greenstein, head of the liberal Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, says the growth in the number of people in many programs is due to a rise in the poverty rate from 11.3% in 2000 to 12.7% in 2004, the most recent year available. "It's certainly better that people falling into poverty can get Medicaid, but I'd prefer fewer poor people and employers not dropping medical coverage," he says.
The new drug benefit will no doubt cause more employers to remove health care for both employees and retirees. This will raise the costs of these programs even more.
Rep. Gil Gutknecht, a conservative Republican from Minnesota, says the number of people in entitlement programs should not be growing when unemployment is near a record low. "It's probably time to revisit food stamps and its goals and costs," says Gutknecht, chairman of the subcommittee that oversees food stamps. Food stamp enrollment climbed from 17.2 million in 2000 to 25.7 million in 2005.
Population growth was 5% in this time period and the growth in food stamps was almost 50%. And the best this "Republican" can say is we should revisit the program? How dumb are these Republicans?
USA TODAY found three major causes for soaring enrollment in government programs: Expanded eligibility: Congress has expanded eligibility for programs in ways that attracted little attention but added greatly to the scope and cost of programs. Congress added food stamp eligibility for 2.7 million people by ending a rule that disqualified people from receiving food stamps if they had a car or truck worth $4,650 or more. The change, one of a series of expansions in 2001 and 2002, was designed to make it easier for food stamp recipients to work.
Our Republicans at work...
Increased participation: The government has made applying for benefits easier, prompting more eligible people to get them. Forms have been shortened, office visits reduced and verification streamlined.
Welfare reform: 1996 overhaul pushed millions of people off cash assistance and into the workforce. Congress expanded eligibility for benefits to support people with low-wage jobs.
My kids are going to pay for this, and so are their kids, and on down the line.