Hi Grace Marguerite Williams! How's it going?
Then thing is poor Americans do not really "complain" about being poor. If they did really "complain," they would be protesting in the streets---as happens in other countries where there is much more---wait for it---class consciousness.
If by "complain," you mean that poor people often sit around in despair of their condition and talk about how much it sucks being poor... then... well... being poor is something to despair about; and it is something to "vent" about sometimes. Why not?
Everyone wants to live at least a comfortable lifestyle. But you say that "they" (the poor monolithically drawn) wish to do so on "someone's dime." Where is the charity?
The great Noam Chomsky used to always say something like this: If we lived in a "functional democracy," we would celebrate April 15 (tax day) instead of throwing on the black garb of mourning.
Because we could celebrate the fact that we were all paying for programs for the benefit of all (with those of us who have the most need getting the most help). Who's "dime" is it, when you get right down to it?
Also, how do we know that "poor Americans" are "not making any concerted effort on their part to improve themselves"? How do we know that?
You also say that "they" need to "plan, organize, & work smart to attain such a lifestyle," referencing the "good life" or "affluent lifestyle." Did everybody in our society, who lives the "good life," get there by "planning, organizing, and working smart"?
What about the rich who entirely or most inherit their wealth? What about a healthy estate tax to redistribute some of that wealth----that living and working in the United States facilitated so and so's great grandfather in accumulating?
In this sense, through redistributive policies, the affluent should "foot" the "bills" of the rest of us, actually.
Also, you say that there are those who "refuse to succeed on their own." First of all, as you well know, nobody succeeds on her own; all successful people have help---social and professional networks, mentors, etc. You say, "Oftentimes, the worst thing is to help a poor person because this robs them of their independence."
I wish more people felt this way about the big banks that the government bailed out in the wake of the 2008 financial-economic crisis. Where was the concern for preserving their independence?