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Old 03-15-2011, 08:51 AM
10,452 posts, read 11,608,042 times
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I am not a think-tank so I can only offer what I think would be solutions in vague terms, but I definitely know there are people out there that have come up with very detailed concrete steps as a solution to poverty and welfare as I was privileged enough to edit one of these bills. IMO, from what I read, and from having spoken with the author of said bill, it boils down to the following:
1) First and foremost, compassion. Most poor folks are poor cause of circumstances, not because of who they are.
2) Access to some of the resources that are already offered to middle-class and upper-class citizens, such as meals, early education, especially hands-on education.
3) Mentality. Poverty becomes a mentality for many people. To end poverty, someone cannot just be given access to resources. Their thought processes have to be changed so that they can think of themselves as no longer poor. Experiments show that a "mentally" poor person with a million dollars will blow it all off and be poor again rather than using it wisely so it can last. This includes retraining poor people's view of their position in society. Poor people tend to think of themselves as the target of "the Man," as always being met with resistance, as unwanted and less than--reasonably so--because of their past experiences. But in order to be successful, you have to let go of this mentality first. Middle- and upper-class children are raised with a sense of can-do, the world is my oyster, I can make it happen, also as a result of their circumstances. Each generation passes down the class mentality to the next generation, and it takes recognizing and changing this mentality to change your socioeconomic status.
4) That said, training poor folks how to use their money wisely. For example, rather than blowing away all the money on toys, or even just living off it till it's gone, using that money to do whatever it takes to attain a stable means of income. If that means using it so you can go out 8 hours a day for job interviews, so be it. And if you have to use it to hire a babysitter for awhile so you can go out 8 hours a day, then do that. Etc.
5) Poor people are just as much entitled to children as people of any other socioeconomic status. People need to be taught, though, that children is just as much a financial decision as it is a psychological one. In many poor circles, having a kid or several is seen as a badge of honor. If culturally people can realize that while parenthood is definitely respectable, it's also a financial burden, more people can hold off on gaining their badge of honor till a time where they can actually afford it. Any concepts of children not costing money also needs to be rethought out. Children do cost money--in fact children cost more than adults because they eat more, need new clothes more often, etc.
6) A shift in activities to discourage criminal activity/drugs, etc. Part of giving poor folks access to resources also includes making unhealthy patterns less accessible. An example would be offering an after-school program that gives children education, and also gives them something to do during the hours of the day they're most likely to engage in doing drugs/having unprotected sex/other behavior that can have long-term detrimental consequences. Another way to do this is making use of the Broken Window Theory. People's surroundings can actually affect their behavior. People are more likely to act respectably in an environment that is clean, whereas people are more likely to engage in crime in surroundings that are run-down, vandalized, etc. An outward show of respect encourages a sense of self-respect which can help turn people away from crime and unhealthy patterns.
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Old 03-15-2011, 09:04 AM
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Originally Posted by brikag View Post
Here's an opinion/suggestion. Do away all wages. Everyone works for a better humanity and ourselves, the greater good for civilization. Sounds radical. But it could better this part of the world. Get rid of the mentality of "What the Jones' have" Not the utopia everyone dreams about, but a civilization that betters itself by education, compassion, cooperation.....
Just talking.....
I woud love this. People don't realize money is a concept made up entirely in the mind. The value in a $50 bill is in our minds. And because we all agree to give it value, it works. If we take the value out of money, we won't need a system of money anymore.

Unfortunately we're nowhere near that point yet, but I think if we progress as a species, we could eventually reach that point on a global level.
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Old 03-15-2011, 09:10 AM
10,452 posts, read 11,608,042 times
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Originally Posted by mainebrokerman View Post
and here is why we cant have an honest discussion on this topic,(above),,,always the lowest common denominator conclusion, most of us are praising someone who is pulling themselves out of welfare, thru hard work and personal commitment, someone who has a goal/plan, and is taking the high road, not the easier low road, someone that can feel much better about themselves, feeling of accomplishment, and setting a good example for others.

all the examples in the above post, is why we need to clean the fraud out of the welfare program, so those that truly need it, has it!
we arent calling people lazy leeches, we just would like to see some oversight to cut out the fraud.
Valuing oneself is a prerequisite for having the motivation and desire to set a goal/plan and work towards it. One has to believe they can take the high road in order to take it. A shift in mentality is required before a critical mass of poor people will choose the higher road. In the meantime, as poor people continue to see themselves as powerless and have little or no respect for themselves, they will continue to take the lower road because they believe that's all their capable of. The poor mentality also sees like as a struggle and so anything will be done to minimize this struggle--which includes taking the easier path. There is no blame in pointing out this mental pattern, as it makes sense why it's there because of past experiences, but the mentality has to change first if we want to eliminate things like fraud. We have to see these situations from a compassionate perspective instead of a blame and punishment perspective because obviously, the threat of punishment isn't working. A lot of people DO just see poor people as lazy leeches, instead of giving poor people the base level of human respect they deserve so they can learn to respect themselves in a light that shows their potential for success, so that more people will be compelled to realize their potential.
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Old 03-15-2011, 09:42 AM
Location: Orlando, Florida
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To me one of the answers would be to fund adequate case worker staffing so people who are abusing the system will be more likely to get caught and weeded out. There are also public assistance helps that have waiting lines of months...even years.....such as reduced housing and day care(4C). If these were more readily available to those who would use the system to better their standard of living....then the system would work more efficiently. Many people get stuck in poverty with no way out...when all they would really need is the lifting of a helping hand.

I don't begrudge paying taxes to feed or help take care of people and needy families. I don't understand the concept of enjoying having too much while there are people down the road hungry. When you die, you can't take it with you, so to choke on it rather than share it, seems so incredibly selfish.

I refuse to ever go there in my heart....even if we all have to sit together with only potatoes to eat.
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Old 03-15-2011, 10:04 AM
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Love your heart Glory
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