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Our 'Social Welfare' problem - What is it exactly?

Updated on June 11, 2016

The modern day solutions to the increasing welfare needs

should we allow a few bad apples to spoil the entire barrel?
should we allow a few bad apples to spoil the entire barrel? | Source
Is this the new solution to the homeless problem in this country?
Is this the new solution to the homeless problem in this country?
should we even be offering a helping hand to those in need?
should we even be offering a helping hand to those in need?
Our new welfare system?
Our new welfare system?
will this be the new welfare system in the US?
will this be the new welfare system in the US?

History of Social Welfare

The 'Social Welfare' problem - What is it? And why and when did it become a 'bad' thing?

Is welfare helping or hurting society?

Do disadvantaged people really deserve our help at all?

Are the homeless, or the mentally/physically handicapped undeserving of what everyone else takes for granted?

Has compassion left humanity altogether?

We need to re-examine how it happened and why we fight over this social problem.

Social welfare is an instinctively noble human characteristic, that is intrinsically valuable to our society and to all of humanity.

It defines who we are as a people:

compassionate, caring, unselfish and willing to reach out to others in their times of need. Always with the perceptive gratitude of the concept of: "There, but for the grace of God, go I". A very basic concept of what one would like to believe is actually a part of 'Christianity' (or Humanity) at its best.

[I would like to interject here, that when i use the word christian, it in no way endorses or supports any type of religion - it is simply to suggest a state of mind, that envelops the concept of good].

The simple definition of social welfare acceptance, was defined in 1917 as;

organized public or private social services for the assistance of disadvantaged groups of people.

Escalating numbers

Today the "needy" numbers have escalated and therefore the concept of the ''disadvantaged'' has been changed to mean "disenfranchised", and viewed as some kind of 'privilege' invoked by lazy people who simply do not want to work for a living.

{Although, this may be a fact in a small percentage of people taking advantage of the system - much like the wealthy do on a continuously socially accepted basis}.

This is truly absurd and seems to be the new concept adopted by callous politicians, the wealthy, and today's modern conservative "Christians" and the new GOP/Tea Party.

The only people opposed to social welfare are those whose desire it is, to exploit others for profit, and/or those whose own needs come before all others.

In any society there will always be "shirkers" who think they deserve something for nothing.

And this unfortunately includes some politicians, the wealthy, and some religious zealots; who think they are exempt from taking part in anything of value simply because they were born into their particular status in life.

  • The far radical right wing calls them a burden on an already over taxed government system.
  • The far radical left think they should be handed welfare without any reciprocation, or accountability.
  • The wealthy see them as potential barriers, in the way, of their accumulating more wealth and power.

Social welfare was never designed with any of these radical views in mind.

The intent was to "assist" the disadvantaged and help them regain their own independence in our society; and not to simply become a way of life and a continuous source of income for those who are capable of overcoming their current disastrous situations.

The Disadvantaged.

But first, let's define "disadvantaged" before continuing this discussion.

The dictionary defines it as:

  • 1.) Loss or damage to reputation, credit or finances.
  • 2.) lacking in the basic resources or conditions (as standard housing, medical and educational facilities, and civil rights) believed to be necessary for an equal position in society.

Also included in this description are the handicapped, both mentally and physically, either by birth defect, or accidental mishap.

Then, somehow, everything got twisted out of proportion, as it always does, when there are too many "questionably intentioned" individuals trying to change the rules to 'fit' to their own personal agendas.

Years ago, there were 'state institutions' that provided housing for people with such severe 'handicaps' that they were unable (incapable) of caring for themselves.

Then the greed started setting into our society and governmental corruption (at all levels) was becoming an acceptable way of life.

Government Solutions?

Then "cuts' on the budgets, needed to be made to accommodate the 'corruption expense'; so those institutions were closed. One at a time.

The unfortunate residents of those institutions paid the ultimate price.

And somehow the twisted political rationality for doing so was perpetuated to justify this injustice to those 'handicapped' people as - "... giving them back their individual rights and freedoms....."

What a load of bunk.

They were discarded by the public, and the system, like some useless garbage.

Many of them ended up in prisons, dead, or simply homeless scavengers, still living innocuously (not liked by the public and provoking strong feelings of hostility) in plain sight, in every city of this shameless nation we have become.

After all, no-one is really being harmed by their presence, except the victims themselves, or those politicians, and good citizens, that would like to see their shame hidden from the general view of the public.

So, as typical governmental policy - let us just leave things the way they are and hope it will somehow magically just go away on its own.

  • The political left faction will continue to champion the cause of the plight of the disadvantaged.
  • The political right faction will continue to ignore the problem, blame the victims, and waste the revenue that was originally spent to house and care for those handicapped people.

After all, it has no perceived threat to the wealthy, and it is good for political pandering to be able to vilify the left with such terms as 'socialists' and 'communists' or 'entitlement programs' for their efforts to help those in need.

And to re-assure the wealthy that these 'disadvantaged' people are no threat to their net profits.

Politicians from both sides of the aisle justify their inaction's by voicing their disdain at those people who 'simply refuse to help themselves' and are there, by their own fault.

So, lets just leave the disadvantaged alone.

They are, after all, serving a purpose;

  • exploited by politics,
  • ignored by humanity,
  • saving the government precious corporate dollars,
  • and simply ignored by all others, (with the exception of a very few humanitarians that do what they can to alleviate their plight).

And nothing ever changes.

Life is good. At least for the rest of us who manage to be able to work for a living and stay off the streets of poverty. And who have learned to ignore the fact that most working class middle income people are only one, or two, paychecks away from being homeless ourselves.

by: d.william 10/27/11

Who increased the debt the most? Don't confuse me with the facts!!

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Political lies
Political lies
Political lies

Gov. Walker (Wisc) implementing the GOP plan to destroy the unions

© 2011 d.william


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    • d.william profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from Somewhere in the south

      Thanks again for your comments.

      I agree with you 100%, as do 99% of the population in this country. Odd, how a minority can win and rule this country, and yet we allow a majority rule to continue discrimination against minorities and justify it by simply saying: the majority rules. What a bunch of B.S.

      The reason why laws were written to provide equal rights, certain civil rights, etc...was for just that very reason - so the majority could not vote to discriminate against the minority.

    • Jean Bakula profile image

      Jean Bakula 

      7 years ago from New Jersey

      I am afraid things will get really ugly in this campaign. I usually vote D, and while I'm not thrilled with Obama's performance, I'd rather see him win than hand our country over to a corporate raider. Romney has no foreign relations experience, and as far as work, was Bain Capital his only job? I think there may very well be a revolution soon. I'm tired of these redneck, hateful people who are so dumb they believe any lies they hear. They worry about Socialism, but it was Hitler who's motto was, "Repeat the lies over and over, until they believe it's the truth." It's sad to watch the most prejudiced and under educated people in the country making important decisions. But I know I don't have to preach to the choir :). Have a great Father's Day!

    • d.william profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from Somewhere in the south

      Thank you so much for reading and your heartfelt comments.

      It truly IS an American shame that women and the disabled take a back seat to everyone else. We can thank the new GOP mentality for that one. With all the new laws passed against women's rights: reproductive care, necessary abortions, and the newest bill: in favor of continuing the practice of paying women less than men (the rationale by the GOP is that women are less reliable than men, and too dumb to make personal decisions for themselves).

      The other travesty of justice is this union busting going on in every state led by Republicans. Without unions, the employers (corporations) can dismiss any employee for any reason without recourse. This plan to destroy the unions is in full force and will be implemented without any meaningful objections against this practice. The rationale? Unions contribute to the Democratic party financially, and fight for the individual's rights to get equal pay for equal work, etc., thereby lies the necessity for weakening the democratic process in the country and giving greater value, power, and credence to the wealthy.

      It is truly disgusting, and if November finds us going further down that road toward total destruction, there will truly be a civil war in this country.

      People will never wake up to what is going on until these pirates' shenanigans effect them personally. By then it will be to late to stop it without a civil uprising. We will become a larger version of Syria, where the dictators are murdering all who rebel against their tyrannical power.

      People like you are simply deemed as collateral damage by the radical right conservatives in control at this time.

    • Jean Bakula profile image

      Jean Bakula 

      7 years ago from New Jersey

      I have so much trouble with the hypocrites, who are many Republicans, but come in all parties. It's true they have everything handed to them, and many grew up in wealthy families. Even if not the kind of wealth the Bushes and Romneys grew up with, the kind where Mom and Dad gave the "kids" their own paid off home when they got married, watched the grandchildren for free, and always had gov't. jobs and full health care, tons of paid days off. The sexism in disability is terrible, but it does work both ways. I have exteme scoliosis, and work P/T jobs until I'm in so much pain I am doubled over. Then I take a measely two days off to recover (what a joke, it takes weeks after an attack like that) and I get fired for my "bad attendance." It's been the story of my adult life. Right now my husband and I are struggling, after putting our son through college, and although my husband makes good money, it doesn't go far. My son is a teacher, just subbing now, but has a real possility of a job and some interviews after this school year ends. They hire teachers in summer. But if I was a man with a big beer belly, complaining about my bad back, I'd get disablity. I've only collected unemployment after my last surgery, it just so happened the job fired me for attendance reasons, and I was already collecting unemployment for the first time in my life, when I needed surgery for another reason. I worked for 20 years F/T. But I can't ever work F/T again, and it's disheartening to get fired from jobs a trained monkey can do. I can't take a job where I have too much responsibility, like opening a bank branch, in case I have to call out. So I have to do dumb jobs, where they have a lot of people in the department. These politicians don't understand the problems regular people face at all. This next election is a joke. Maybe we need a revolution.

    • d.william profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Somewhere in the south

      Thanks for your comments. Sometimes, i truly believe that all the laws passed in this government are designed to be flawed so that those they owe allegiances to can access the system in payment for their support. A disgusting thought, i know, but probably more truthful than not.

    • amillar profile image


      8 years ago from Scotland, UK

      I agree DW; we need to get the balance right and not allow people to 'game the system', or undermine decency, no matter who they are, or how they perceive society.

      Up and useful.

    • d.william profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Somewhere in the south

      You are 100% correct in you assessment. I too know people who abuse the system. And as you state, to make rules to try and force decency and honesty, will only further harm the truly needy. And whether it is politically correct or not, women do have an easier time getting assistance. After all they are still perceived as the "weaker sex" and play the role well when they want something. (and before i get bombarded as being chauvinistic, it is simply a matter of fact). And to make another political (gaffe), it is the MOST difficult for white males to get help when they need it.

    • drbillfannin profile image


      8 years ago from Atlanta

      I agree for the most part, but the abuse of the system is probably worse than you know. Honest and caring people tend to think that most people are honest and caring. Unfortunately, reality is that most people are self-centered and don't care, even professing Christians. I personally know 5 people on government disability under the age of 50. Only one would I qualify as needy. The other 4 are using the system for a free ride because they fooled the doctors into thinking they were disabled when in fact they are not. Once approved for a program, our government just keeps it going. As for food stamps, that one is ridiculous. It is well known that our entire "entitlement" system is filled with fraud and waste. Estimates by our government auditors go as high as 60% waste and fraud. Unfortunately, there is no easy way to fix the problem. Any attempt to clean up the system also affects the truly needy. The flip side of this problem is that there are truly needy people who can't get help. I am legally disabled and have serious limitations on what I can do, but our government won't put me on disability. The doctor they sent me to told me to quit any type of physical labor or risk being paralyzed. I have a back injury from a wreck 40 years ago. I have to keep trying to find a job I can do, not an easy task at 57 with a disability and the wrong education and the wrong experience. By the way, I don't know if this figures into the equation, but I am a man and the 4 freeloaders I mentioned earlier are women. None of them have any documented injuries, they are listed as "mentally" unable to work even though every one of them is smarter than me.

    • d.william profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Somewhere in the south

      Thanks for reading, commenting and your support. The only way some people will ever learn about anything is if it slaps them in the face. Welfare, unemployment and major losses are not any concern to politicians who have everything handed to them for free (insurance, medical care, retirement, all the perks they can squeeze out of the system, etc.). Although i would not wish them ill, i would not be too devastated if any of them found themselves on the other end of the spectrum. This goes, as well, for their adamant, baseless, and ignorant ideas on the same sex thing. The only way for anyone to learn is to have family members, or close friends, slap them with the realities of life. Again, thanks for your response. I always say that ignorance is never an excuse for stupidity.

    • profile image

      Old Poolman 

      8 years ago

      d.william - Another well written and thought provoking hub. Every time I read your hubs, I come up with things I have never considered, or a new way of looking at a problem. Due to our high unemployment levels and economic downturn, I'm sure many have found themselves in need of assistance for the first time in their lives. I can't even imagine how terrifying and frustrating it must be to find your way through all the forms, red tape, and other BS to get signed up for a little assistance. Is there fraud, corruption, and waste in the system? Yes, but thank goodness the system is large enough to survive that and still provide assistance to some very needy people.

      Bottom line is few of us would sit back and watch a neighbor starve to death because he was unable to work. We would provide food and whatever else we could to make their lives as comfortable as possible. Many of those who take a hard core stand on assistance programs have never been in a position to need assistance, thus they see this as a waste of money. Let's hope they never need to find out firsthand what this is like, but it would sure change their opinion.

      Great hub my friend.


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