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The Folklore Of The Welfare Mother And People "Mooching" Off Of The System

Updated on July 27, 2015

We all hear about it, the woman that has swindled thousands of dollars out of the system. She drives a Mercedes, has brand new clothes and a large flat screen T.V. in her house. Just so you know this is an urban legend or folklore of the Reagan era. There was a woman named Linda Taylor, a woman that was convicted of this crime in the 1980’s. This whole situation created an excuse for the GOP and other individuals to jump on the wagon of the war that has raged since against Welfare and other programs.

I wince when I hear people talking about how people are living off the system. First of all, they clump Social Security in the mix. Social Security is a program that any people that have worked their whole lives have put money into their whole lives. There is no “entitlement” there to be had. So let us get that out of the way right there.


Having been a single mother and student for a very long time, I know that when I worked, I had a very hard time getting any assistance at all. I always made 50.00 dollars too much for any assistance. Despite that, myself and my son ate from the local foodbank, as when I paid my bills, I had very little left for groceries and that was with student loan money added to my income. I was making more then minimum wage at the time. I have no idea on earth, how any struggling single woman with young children would make it now. The cost of day care is outrageous. It almost costs is as if you have to pay more money to even have a job. Costs you more then you make. If you have more then one child, it is almost better not to work. Although the money you are given to live on is not anything you can truly live on with inflation and the cost of living. Then you have food stamps. By the way, each program you are on, they give and take from. So for instance, if you are on welfare, that would take away from food stamps. So you are never going to be “rich”, people that commit fraud, must be pretty sophisticated. Each month you fill out paperwork that takes at least an hour with detailed information going on in your life about every cent that you have. I can’t honestly see how someone can commit fraud on the system and if they do, they have to go to a lot of work to do it and I can’t see how someone would get rich, or live in luxury while living on food stamps and welfare.


We hear so much about the “lazy Americans”. They are the people that are always on welfare and mooching off the system. The truth is in 2013, 104 million food stamps were used at military commissaries. Over 1 million veterans use food stamps. SNAPS benefits are 134.00 a month for people that are considered to be able bodied. For a three year average report there was only 2.67% fraud throughout the whole unemployment program.

Another angle is that what is being reported as “fraud” by welfare recipients is often an error in their paperwork and an innocent mistake. So this is not even anything that anyone really did intentionally. Trust me, if you are on programs and they find out that you have gotten too much money, you are not given that much money the following months and you pay it back.


That is 1600.00 BEFORE taxes. If you are a single mom, you have to pay for rent, you have to pay for groceries, and you have to pay for child care, utilities. I won’t do the math. But you can. A single mother can work two jobs, but she won’t be there for her kids. She also will have to pay for more childcare. I mean this is all just common sense.

If you are on programs, you get some help on some things. But the programs are all connected, so that you can never get ahead. You live at the poverty level the rest of your life, if you don’t get married or have two incomes.


I think that when we have people like the GOP, particularly people like Paul Ryan and other Tea Party individuals, that while they are demonizing the poor; it is smoke and mirrors for the corporate world. If we are demonizing single moms, or the poor in general for that matter, then we aren’t looking at the corporate welfare that goes on every day to the Petroleum industry and tax loopholes that the very rich are allowed to have, so they don’t have to contribute to the society that they live in that made them so fabulously wealthy. Society doesn’t pay attention to the millions and sometimes billions of misplaced moneys that the Pentagon can’t find. Or the jets that have had billions of dollars put into their manufacture only to have them not work. Our society doesn’t question the fact that executives from companies purposely collapse to be saved by tax dollars so that executives can have “golden parachutes” when they leave their companies. That is the real fraudulent welfare the corporate kind.

So the next time you hear how everyone on welfare or the poor that are on programs are “taking advantage” of the system, just remember what Wall Street, the big banks and the corporate world have been doing and I am willing to bet, they get a lot more money out of the system.


Quora. (2014). How much welfare fraud is there really? Retrieved from

Schewitz, M. (2014). Six Myths About Welfare Recipients Debunked. Retrieved from

I researched all the links they got their information.


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    • claptona profile image

      John D Wilson 

      3 years ago from Earth


      A third party won't solve the inherent problem with politicians - their job is to get elected or re-elected.

      I can't remember who said it, but it was one of the founding fathers.

      "Now that you've elected me to office, I will no longer have your best interests at heart. Being a man, I will be swayed by money and influence - and neither of those will sway me to pay attention to your needs."

      You have to remember - the Constitution is set up - not to save the government from too much influence by the citizens.

      The Constitution is set up to keep the Government from intruding on our "inalienable" rights which are granted by the "Creator" (Not my words, but from the Constitution - so no religious influence from me)

      Definition of government according to Webster: "the political direction and control exercised over the actions of the members, citizens, or inhabitants of communities"

      See that key word there, " control".

      That's the role of every person in government - control the citizens . Whether it be by fining us for not wearing a seat belt or taking our money without filing any charges. (Yes, the IRS and the ATF can do that)

      So, your assumption of relying on the government to solve a problem and be "helpful" is never what a government does.

      The founders of the U.S. knew this, and that's why they felt the Constitution would rein in any government abuse.

      It held for less than 100 years, and was completely obliterated under the presidency of Lincoln.

      Lincoln was the one who led us down a path of a "centralized" government that had control over the states.

      So, even with a 3rd party, once that 3rd party would get elected, their main focus would be to get re-elected, not serve you or me.

      All you have to do is look at history - government has never been a friend to freedom loving people.


    • Tamara M Wright profile imageAUTHOR

      TM Wright 

      3 years ago from U.S.

      You might like this hub I just wrote.

    • claptona profile image

      John D Wilson 

      3 years ago from Earth

      Generally speaking, a politicians job is to get elected, not to tell the truth.

      Trump is a bozo, but as close to the truth as we're probably going to get. (And no I don't support the guy)

      Bernie Sanders is a socialist, which is not what the U.S. democracy stands for. He's said that, so, no labeling here.

      If you want socialism, that's you're choice.

      Myself, I'm for empowering the individual. No type of society has increased the wealth of the average person as capitalism has. Bastardized by the government, we've never really had a true capitalistic society. But, as far aways as it was, it was much better that socialism or communism.

      The problem with people, is they hate to take a personal responsibility about their environment.

      I've traveled quite a bit outside the U.S., and see that quite often.

      Though there are those that chose to live without the "western ways', most wait for help from someone else vs. taking control and doing something about their own environment.

      The reason I call demoncraps and republtards the names I do, it enforces my belief that both parties are evil or full of crap. Neither is out to help america.

      This has been going on since I came of the age of voting. I look at facts vs. the words spouted by the politicians.(Over 40 years of watching republitards and demoncraps ruin the country)

      And the facts are, that they've lied avery time they ran for an office.

      That give you a better understanding?

    • Tamara M Wright profile imageAUTHOR

      TM Wright 

      3 years ago from U.S.

      I agree with you the two party thing, so I guess we are "smoking" the same stuff. Actually your comment prompted me to write a hub about how we need more than a two party system. Which I am writing right now. Have you read any of my other hubs?

      But I do stand firm on my support of Bernie Sanders. Have you read much or researched much about him? I guess I am not quite sure who you are for in the first place...or against. I am a little confused. Also rather then name calling, if you could name specific points that you like and dislike and why, supported by reasons that would be wonderful and maybe I could understand you more.

    • claptona profile image

      John D Wilson 

      3 years ago from Earth

      Didn't say you were an Obama supporter.

      I was trying to show you that there is no difference between the republitards and the democraps.

      Neither will look out for 99% of the people, whether poor or middle class.

      They have no interest in making america a better place to live.

      sanders is as evil as any republitrad, and no more evil than clinton.

      To think, after the government has screwed 99% of the people in decades past, and another person from either party is going to change things....

      Well, like I said, give me some of that stuff you're smoking.

    • Tamara M Wright profile imageAUTHOR

      TM Wright 

      3 years ago from U.S.

      Claptona, I am not an Obama supporter at all. If you look at my other articles, I support Bernie Sanders. He is running as a Democrat but is an independent. Read some of my other hubs. You don't know what standpoint I am coming from.

      I am for helping the poor as well. That is my big point I am trying to make.

    • lovemychris profile image

      Leslie McCowen 

      3 years ago from Cape Cod, USA

      I'll tell you honestly Tamara.....I think it's because they are women. And they are not fulfilling their job as "help-meet" of man.

      My boss is involved with a man whose ex is a big drunk, so he has custody of his kid.....and he went straight-away to the state for help.

      And if you can believe it: people encouraged him! Told him what a wonderful guy he was and OF COURSE you should get help...raising a child is expensive!

      No one told HIM he should have kept it in his pants......

      No one said: "That's MY money you're using to eat your lobster and drive your Cadillac"

      It's an impossible situation, because America is still stuck in 1950's mentality.

      Schools still have religious holidays...4 day weekends, "teachers day"..etc etc

      And no one considers what working parents are supposed to do with their kids!

      It's all based on the assumption that dad is working and mom is home with the kids.

      And I also think it's based on prejudice against women who don't have a man.

      To paraphrase Glenn Beck: "I think the some people have a deep-seated hatred of women"

      How else to explain?:

      A woman who needs help is a dirty bum who should have kept her legs closed

      A man who needs help is a stellar example of a father

    • claptona profile image

      John D Wilson 

      3 years ago from Earth

      So, Obama's been in office now for 6 years, and it's still the Republitards that are to blame for the poor not getting help?

      And you justify the Democraps handling of giving banks trillions of dollars while they commit fraud, money laundering, rigging markets and stealing from their clients?

      Don't you think the trillions would have been of better use to the poor than the banks?

      And the Democraps did this over the last 6 years - under Obama and Holder.

      All the major banks have admitted to fraud, money laundering, rigging of markets, violating SEC regulations and no one has gone to jail.

      And you think some how, some way, a stroke of genius is going to strike a democrap or republitard to figure out how to solve poverty in the U.S.?

      These are the same idiots who pass a trade bill, then pass another bill that's going to pay those that lose jobs, MONEY!

      This is under a democrap president. In the middle of a recession!

      If those in government haven't been able to figure out what to do about poverty since 1964, what gives you the idea that the government is going to figure it out now?

      And since the government - under both democraps and republitards - have screwed over 99% of americans, what makes you think they give a rat's rear end about the poor?

      This is the best it will be under government rule. It ain't going to get better.

      Under Obama, he's increased the debt more than in the entire existence of the country. (In other words, in the last 6 years, there's been more debt sold than there had been between 1776 and 2008)

      And you some how think the government is going to spend MORE money on helping the poor?

      I'd like some of that stuff your smoking, please.


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