Welcome to City-Data.com Forum!
U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Economics > Frugal Living
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 02-16-2013, 11:54 AM
 
Location: Duluth, Minnesota, USA
7,639 posts, read 18,168,527 times
Reputation: 6915

Advertisements

These forums seem to trend towards the liberal side on social issues, but there is a definite fiscal conservative and libertarian contingent who disavows government assistance programs such as SNAP (food stamps).

However, from the individual's perspective, it does not get any more economical than taking advantage of the government programs one qualifies for. There are many beyond food stamps: subsidized health care, energy assistance, section 8 housing, etc.

Is taking full benefit of the government's programs "frugal living"? Is making a well-considered decision to intentionally stay under the poverty line or to arrange one's affairs to maximize eligibility for public programs as makes most sense for the individual also "frugal"?

A few examples to reify things:

1. A person with a chronic medical condition, which requires constant treatment, intentionally chooses a lesser-paying job without health coverage to qualify for the state's subsidized health insurance plan. If he was an employee of a company that offered private health benefits, and therefore made him ineligible for the state insurance plan, he would find himself paying more in deductibles, co-pays, etc. than the difference in pay between the two jobs.

2. A financially savvy adult lives with his poor parents, his two adult children and two of their friends, his wife, and his ex-girlfriend, all unemployed, and takes on a low-paying job below his qualifications, knowing that he would score much more through the government's tax rebate program and all the additional programs he would qualify for than if he were to take a higher-paying job that fit his qualifications.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 02-16-2013, 12:19 PM
 
28,453 posts, read 85,602,723 times
Reputation: 18732
It is probably beyond the traditional understanding of "frugal" to make choices that place oneself at the mercy of poltical handouts. Words like "goldbrickers" "welfare cheats" and "takers" come to mind....
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-16-2013, 12:20 PM
 
Location: West Roxbury, MA
289 posts, read 569,608 times
Reputation: 437
For me it would come down to pride rather than frugality, unless it were a matter of life and death.

Last edited by bostonbarney; 02-16-2013 at 12:22 PM.. Reason: Saying what I mean without qualifying it.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-16-2013, 12:36 PM
 
Location: Kailua Kona, HI
3,198 posts, read 13,426,152 times
Reputation: 3422
Your #1. If you think you can get superior care on medicaid, think again. It may be "free" however try finding a specialist who accepts this insurance.

Your #2. Classic example of "need -based thinking". No ambition, no pride, no sense of personal responsibility. Our nation has way too many of these types already, thinking that the world owes them a living.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-16-2013, 12:48 PM
 
10,640 posts, read 12,200,933 times
Reputation: 16840
Wow, what an OP question?
Are those scenarios about FRUGALITY?
I'd say no.

Is government help really THAT much (that much money) that its worth staying below the poverty line to get it?

I think you'd end up with MORE money (to save or spend) just working -- not to mention not having the gov't in your business, and dictating certain requirements to receive the assistance.

When I was just out of college in the early 80s and unemployed, and really didn't know anything about welfare. I went to a welfare office to see about benefits -- the condition of the office (run down) -- (I know I'm judging a book by it's cover here) - the low level, poverty-stricken appearances of the people waiting, and WAITING and WAITING to be seem, only to be talked to in a condescending manner like some ignorant do-nothing -- let me know I NEVER want to come back there or be on public assistance. I never went back.

((I admit I can be snooty. So i admit, I took offense to how the case worker talked to me. I had a Master's degree, had lived and traveled in Europe more than once...and she was talking to me like I was some 2nd generation welfare single mom with three kids. It was just her tone.)

SO -- unless it's situation #1 above -- like the HEALTH issue -- I would even THINK of welfare as a frugality method.

I don't see anybody on ANY KIND OF PUBLIC ASSISTANCE living the lifestyle I want.

Unless they're a total welfare cheat on a MILLION DOLLAR scale that could land you in a cell next to Bernie Madoff -- and then we're talking about CRIMES, not just the OP scenarios -- I don't see the appeal (to say the least)
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-16-2013, 03:09 PM
 
Location: Duluth, Minnesota, USA
7,639 posts, read 18,168,527 times
Reputation: 6915
Quote:
Originally Posted by KonaKat View Post
Your #1. If you think you can get superior care on medicaid, think again. It may be "free" however try finding a specialist who accepts this insurance.

Your #2. Classic example of "need -based thinking". No ambition, no pride, no sense of personal responsibility. Our nation has way too many of these types already, thinking that the world owes them a living.
1. I am on Medicaid (as of now) and have a fine neuro-oncologist. Doesn't get much more specialized than that.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-16-2013, 03:12 PM
 
2,135 posts, read 4,281,315 times
Reputation: 1688
Quote:
Originally Posted by KonaKat View Post

Your #2. Classic example of "need -based thinking". No ambition, no pride, no sense of personal responsibility. Our nation has way too many of these types already, thinking that the world owes them a living.
Couldn't agree more.

There is no reason why a 19 year old female should be popping out a couple of babies with a part time $8.25/hr job. Then end up moving in with their parents and causing financial hardships on the parents. Good bye retirement....we all know that raising a kid isn't cheap. You will be spending all of your savings on this new child or throw the baby and your daughter out....which won't happen.

Then they think they deserve $200 in food benefits and section 8 housing and who knows what else.

Unemployment and these other government assistances weren't meant for a way of living like some people use it. There are some....but you shouldn't ever be on unemployment for 99 weeks. Give me a break.

I would rather work for my money and try to be frugal than stealing it from the tax payers.

Unfortunately these people think they deserve these government benefits. They get uppity because they deserve $200 in food stamps because they have 3 kids to feed at the age of 24.

This is why the tax payers get upset over this type of stuff. I don't mind helping the less fortunate who are in dire need. I don't want to help out the parents who are 24 popping out kids left and right who can't even make more than $8 an hour.

This isn't being frugal and people need some pride in themselves.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-16-2013, 03:13 PM
 
Location: southern california
61,286 posts, read 87,603,614 times
Reputation: 55564
no more than stealing is cutting expenses. public assistance is where u go when u have run out of options, a bad position to be in, been there done that.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-16-2013, 03:30 PM
 
30,914 posts, read 37,080,935 times
Reputation: 34579
Quote:
Originally Posted by selhars View Post
When I was just out of college in the early 80s and unemployed, and really didn't know anything about welfare. I went to a welfare office to see about benefits -- the condition of the office (run down) -- (I know I'm judging a book by it's cover here) - the low level, poverty-stricken appearances of the people waiting, and WAITING and WAITING to be seem, only to be talked to in a condescending manner like some ignorant do-nothing -- let me know I NEVER want to come back there or be on public assistance. I never went back.
I once worked a volunteer job that paid a small stipend of about $700 a month. They told me I qualified for food stamps. I never bothered to apply for them because I didn't want to deal with the depressing scenario you just outlined. Honestly, it was just easier and less depressing for me to get a 2nd job....which I did several months later.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-16-2013, 03:33 PM
 
30,914 posts, read 37,080,935 times
Reputation: 34579
Quote:
Originally Posted by tvdxer View Post
A few examples to reify things:

1. A person with a chronic medical condition, which requires constant treatment, intentionally chooses a lesser-paying job without health coverage to qualify for the state's subsidized health insurance plan. If he was an employee of a company that offered private health benefits, and therefore made him ineligible for the state insurance plan, he would find himself paying more in deductibles, co-pays, etc. than the difference in pay between the two jobs.

2. A financially savvy adult lives with his poor parents, his two adult children and two of their friends, his wife, and his ex-girlfriend, all unemployed, and takes on a low-paying job below his qualifications, knowing that he would score much more through the government's tax rebate program and all the additional programs he would qualify for than if he were to take a higher-paying job that fit his qualifications.
I can see how your scenario #1 could happen. While I wouldn't call it frugal...sometimes people have to do what they have to do. Depending on the situation, the person may or may not be able to realistically get a better paying job.

As for scenario #2...no way. Kick the moochers out. Tell them to give the kids up for adoption if they can't support them. No way, no how would I put up with a living situation like that with people who aren't willing to do anything with their lives.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Economics > Frugal Living

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2024, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Contact Us - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37 - Top