Friday, December 01, 2006

Two statistics that tell you how bad some of our problems really are

I heard two statistics today that were very appalling and that illustrate two of the problems that this country faces.

Both of these statistics should frighten you and should be the topic of large national conversations...

Neither will matter to our politicians or to the majority of the electorate...


The first statistic is that one out of every 32 adult Americans are either in prison, in jail, on probation, or on parole as of the end of 2005.

Does anyone who reads this blog think this is a good thing? It is a terrible thing and we have to do something about it. Realize that the average inmate only serves about 40% of their original sentence. Who do you think pays for all of the people in the "correctional" population?

The second statistic was in todays newspaper. 1 in 6 Hoosiers are on at least one of the following programs: Medicaid, Food Stamps, TANF (Welfare).

What? 1 in 6 Hoosiers are on one of the above Government programs. Who do you think pays the tab for the above programs?

Even more frightening is the fact that Indiana ranks 50th (LAST) our of the 50 states as far as our ability to get people to work and off welfare...

Mike Sylvester

9 comments:

John Good said...

The second statistic was in todays newspaper. 1 in 6 Hoosiers are on at least one of the following programs: Medicaid, Food Stamps, TANF (Welfare).

What? 1 in 6 Hoosiers are on one of the above Government programs. Who do you think pays the tab for the above programs?


What? No concern or outrage that so many Hoosiers are in need of assistance? Everything comes back to it's cost. . .no matter what.

LP Mike Sylvester said...

John Good:

You bring up an interesting point...

You know darn well that I do NOT think that 1 in 6 Hoosiers are in an economic situation that would require them to be on TANF (Welfare), Food Stamps, or Medicaid.

No sane person would...

I was born in rural Indiana near Muncie. I have lived in Indiana for 28 of my 39 years. I know a lot of people in Indiana.

Out of all the people I know; I know one that is on Government assistance. That one is a teenager who has a terrible disease and will never be able to live a normal life. I HAVE NO PROBLEM WITH HIM BEING ON GOVERNMENT ASSISTANCE. He SHOULD be on Government assistance.

TANF (Welfare) and Food Stamps were meant to be temporary programs when they were started. They have become permenant programs for a large number of people who SHOULD NOT be on them...

Are you going to ANY holiday Parties this year John Good?

I bet the answer is yes.

Look around at your friends at that Party and ask yourself, do 1 in 6 of these people need to be on Government assistance?

The answer is no...

Mike

Jeff Pruitt said...

The prison system is currently a disaster - I'd like to see a breakdown of violent vs non-violent (i.e. drugs) offenders behind bars.

The statistic that worries me the most is that Indiana is 50th in moving people from welfare to work. The whole point of federal assistance (IMO) should be to help create new taxpayers. I try to apply this train of thought to most federal programs - "Does this program ultimately create new taxpayers or a higher class of taxpayers?"

And I would even go a step further. ALL federal programs should have metrics that they're measured against. If we're going to provide assistance then we should decide HOW we're going to measure if it works - and then later follow up to check the program's effectiveness.

This prinicple of create-test-adjust is done in nearly every field but politics - it's time that changes...

Anonymous said...

Another side of this issue:

Being a single mother of three, I cannot begin to tell you how easy the system is to simply become a "welfare mom". As a matter of fact, I have been, on more than one occasion encouraged to do just that by people who work within the judicial system, go figure.

And, in the midst of my divorce, I lost a job due to issues associated with my divorce. I went on unemployment and apparently I was a rare one who was actually looking for work while on unemployment and was hired within two weeks of starting to receive benefits, I received a letter from the state that I had not used all of the benefits available to me and basically I was more trouble for them by only using two weeks worth...wtf???

I am a firm believer in the fact that anyone who truly wants to work - can work. It may not be the job of our dreams...but we certainly can work. And we can always look to better ourselves in the process.

LP Mike Sylvester said...

Well said Jessica.

Mike

Mike Kole said...

If the prison system houses significantly more non-violent than violent convicts, it also means that significantly more police resources are committed to non-violent rather than violent offenses.

Priorities...

Robert Enders said...

Many police departments have a arrest quota to fill. If it has been a slow week, it is handy for officers to have a source of easy pickings, such as known non-violent drug offenders.

Anonymous said...

Two things I would have an interest in knowing:

One: One in six hoosiers ...how many used the assistance effectively like Ms. Rabbit and how many entered and just stayed in. How many and how long?

Two: Crimes against others versus crimes against oneself (otherwise known as "vice").

If we did not prosecute "vice" what burden of taxes would be lifted to encourage real, private 100% compassionate aid to the "needy"? The 10% benefit received from any government program obviously is not enough, and needs to be privately funded.

I am outraged that the grubbermint has encouraged one out of six people to become dependants.

One Radical Libbe tarian

John Good said...

TANF (Welfare) and Food Stamps were meant to be temporary programs when they were started. They have become permenant programs for a large number of people who SHOULD NOT be on them...

Absolutely NO argument from me on that one, Mike. It's a "hand up", not a "hand out". I say keep the filters in place that keep people from falling through the cracks, but set guidelines and monitor for abuses of the system.