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The "Obama Phone"

  1. profile image0
    Madame Xposted 8 years ago

    I received an interesting email from a friend -

    "I had a former employee call me earlier today inquiring about a job, and at the end of the conversation he gave me his phone number. I asked the former employee if this was a new cell phone number and he told me yes this was his “Obama phone.” I asked him what an “Obama phone” was and he went on to say that welfare recipients are now eligible to receive (1) a FREE new phone and (2) approx 70 minutes of FREE minutes every month. I was a little skeptical so I Googled it and low and behold he was telling the truth."


    https://www.safelinkwireless.com/Enroll … /home.aspx

    So, uh, whatever happened to hard work and self-respect?

    1. Jeffrey Neal profile image78
      Jeffrey Nealposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      The Lifeline program was around before Obama.  I never looked into its history, but a wireless carrier I worked for participated.  It is for certain people on specific gov't assistance programs including welfare, and it was simply a small dollar amount credit ($13, I believe).  It was available for landline or cellular, but not both.  The carrier had received significant money from .gov to build out it's wireless network in rural areas and was required to offer service in areas it normally would not due to low population.

    2. profile image45
      limpinghawkposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      I have to laugh at the misinformation that can surface the Web.
      I have a TracPhone/SafeLink Phone, and I have been using it way, way before Obama came into office.

      This is a case of the people behaving like Sheep, and not thinking for themselves.
      This is a big joke!
      The 'Obama Phone', pure B.S.!

    3. Harvey Stelman profile image60
      Harvey Stelmanposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      X,

      This is "the new America." We know longer have those uhh....things.

      1. Ralph Deeds profile image66
        Ralph Deedsposted 7 years agoin reply to this

        What about Warren Buffett and John Bogle?

    4. profile image45
      c2a0n0e8sposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      This is definitely not an "Obama Phone"...he has nothing to do with the creation of the program or the funding. The Universal Service Fund pays for the minutes and TracFone gives free phones...this is just an update to the Lifeline program that provides basic telephone service for low-income households. Cell phones are becoming more of a necessity and less of a luxury in life now.

  2. profile image0
    Madame Xposted 8 years ago

    Helping the needy with food and shelter is one thing, but this?

    1. Jeffrey Neal profile image78
      Jeffrey Nealposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      I agree.

    2. Uninvited Writer profile image83
      Uninvited Writerposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      Yes...a whole hour a month to talk on the phone...what is the world coming to?

      1. tksensei profile image60
        tksenseiposted 8 years agoin reply to this

        Yeah, people are so silly! What's a few more 'free' things paid for with other people's money?

      2. livelonger profile image95
        livelongerposted 8 years agoin reply to this

        Uninvited Writer, we're talking literally *thousands* of dollars a year all together. That money could be used to fund approximately 37 seconds of our next potential "overseas adventure"!

        1. Uninvited Writer profile image83
          Uninvited Writerposted 8 years agoin reply to this

          That's what I was thinking smile

          1. profile image0
            sneakorocksolidposted 8 years agoin reply to this

            If you want to donate to the program great! But if you don't you shouldn't be forced to.

            1. egiv profile image67
              egivposted 8 years agoin reply to this

              That's funny, because I've been forced to donate to the war in Iraq for 6 years...

              1. Jeffrey Neal profile image78
                Jeffrey Nealposted 8 years agoin reply to this

                You should read Misha's hub on Anarchy.  Interesting solution to the tax problem.

              2. Flightkeeper profile image74
                Flightkeeperposted 8 years agoin reply to this

                Oh, and you consider our military a social program?

                1. profile image0
                  Madame Xposted 8 years agoin reply to this

                  HA HA smile

                2. egiv profile image67
                  egivposted 8 years agoin reply to this

                  Nope. Doesn't mean I've "donated" any less though. I consider social problems like the welfare of those in need much more important than an unjust war that sent us into incredible levels of debt. If you are so worried about the US spending too much money, protest the war that was spending $1 billion a week (or maybe ask some oil companies for some of the profits our soldiers earned them), not a relatively cheap social program for those who have less than you.

                  1. Flightkeeper profile image74
                    Flightkeeperposted 8 years agoin reply to this

                    This social program was something that was a small program that targed a specific group that became bloated.  And if you want to feel good about yourself do it with your own money not everyone else's.  And you don't get to decide how much money I spend depending on what I've got, it's none of your business.  This is a separate issue from the government's duty to protect the country, you might not agree with the war, but it passed both houses of congress.

      3. profile image61
        C.J. Wrightposted 8 years agoin reply to this

        Does the Canadian government issue Cell phones to the "needy"?

    3. Ralph Deeds profile image66
      Ralph Deedsposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      It's hard for unemployed people to look for a job without the Internet, let alone without a phone.

  3. profile image0
    sneakorocksolidposted 8 years ago

    It's the give it all away mentality!

  4. profile image0
    Madame Xposted 8 years ago

    The SafeLink program is part of the Lifeline program created in 1989 under the Reagan Administration and gave free phone service to people so they could have access in cases of emergency.

    After 9/11, Katrina, etc., the FCC worked to extend the program, under the Bush Administration. Their reasoning was, "Modern universal telephone service is necessary not only to ensure that the U.S. maintains a rapid, efficient, nationwide communications network, it is important for the purpose of national defense and to promote safety of life and property."


    Seems Obama has redefined it's use in more socialistic terms . . .

    1. profile image61
      C.J. Wrightposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      I seem to remember that the intent of all this was that a 911 call would work from any line....whether you were paying for service or not. In other words you could have line installed...you can have a cell phone, as long as it has a charge, you could call 911..... Just goes to show how the spirit of legislation can be a good thing, but is amended into something wastefull.

    2. Ernie profile image56
      Ernieposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      How so?  All they've done is to allow the same pool of eligible people from the Lifeline program that Reagan established, to use the subsidy for a cellular phone instead of a landline.  Seems pretty sensible to me in this era where more than 20% of households no longer have a landline.  You're really grasping here.

      1. profile image0
        Madame Xposted 8 years agoin reply to this

        That "same group of people" is now a huge segment of the population. Someone said earlier that it's Obama's money - so I guess it doesn't really matter

        1. ledefensetech profile image72
          ledefensetechposted 8 years agoin reply to this

          That was sarcasm, see the rollyeyes?  roll

          1. profile image0
            Madame Xposted 8 years agoin reply to this

            Really? Sarcasm? Who'da thought smile

  5. Flightkeeper profile image74
    Flightkeeperposted 8 years ago

    This is what I hate about government programs.  It was supposed to serve a small, defined group of people who really needed it and then it just expands to one big giveaway. In 1989, cell phones weren't cheap.  It's different now.  This should have been done away awhile ago.

  6. kirstenblog profile image79
    kirstenblogposted 8 years ago

    So can us non-welfare people get one? That would be nice.

    Did you know that most 911 calls at christmas are just to test out new cell phones that don't have a contract set up yet, or no pay as you go money on it yet?

  7. livelonger profile image95
    livelongerposted 8 years ago

    Not to put a damper on this socialism-hatefest or anything, but exactly how much does this program cost the government in total, and how do poor people expect to look for and get jobs when they have no form of communication available?

    1. tksensei profile image60
      tksenseiposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      Good point. No one ever found a job before the free cell phone was invented (by Al Gore, no doubt).

      1. livelonger profile image95
        livelongerposted 8 years agoin reply to this

        Yes, in 2009 serious job applicants should just put their mailing address on resumes, because employers in this day and age never email or call. roll

        1. tksensei profile image60
          tksenseiposted 8 years agoin reply to this

          That settles it then. No one can land a job without a free cell phone. The answer to unemployment is here at last!

      2. profile image0
        Madame Xposted 8 years agoin reply to this

        Thousands of people found jobs without having a phone. They arranged with someone to receive calls. So, to jump on the socialism-hatefest, I would say this has far more potential to be abused than used to get an actual job. After all, why pay for a phone yourself if you don't have to?

        1. tksensei profile image60
          tksenseiposted 8 years agoin reply to this

          Or anything else for that matter?

      3. Uninvited Writer profile image83
        Uninvited Writerposted 8 years agoin reply to this

        But before the cell phone was invented there were pay phones on every corner. They are harder to find these days.

    2. profile image0
      sneakorocksolidposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      Shoe leather, bus or train. Now let get back to my hateing! Hate,hate,hate,hate,hate,hate,hate,etc.

    3. Harvey Stelman profile image60
      Harvey Stelmanposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      If it costs a penny, it is too much. Maybe your young, many years ago people "pounded the pavement." If it was good enough for you ancestors ...............

  8. Uninvited Writer profile image83
    Uninvited Writerposted 8 years ago

    It's funny how a government program can be around for years (and even passed by a Republican president)and no one really notices it, then they use it as another reason to attack Obama.

    1. Flightkeeper profile image74
      Flightkeeperposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      Funny how people think every criticism about government is all about Obama.

      1. Uninvited Writer profile image83
        Uninvited Writerposted 8 years agoin reply to this

        Well...my first clue was "The Obama Phone"

        1. Flightkeeper profile image74
          Flightkeeperposted 8 years agoin reply to this

          Uh yah...which Madame X's friend named it. All of the hubbers didn't even mention Obama but criticized the program which was started by Reagan.

    2. profile image0
      sneakorocksolidposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      It's not exactly the same and the economy is different and we have a federal budjet crisis. How about they get a job and start paying taxes then we help with a phone.

      1. blue dog profile image74
        blue dogposted 8 years agoin reply to this

        been following unemployment numbers for, say, the last 20 months?

    3. ledefensetech profile image72
      ledefensetechposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      That would be because he is expanding it to buy votes. 

      I mean it's Obama money after all, who could it hurt?  roll

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6qG_dqC6 … r_embedded

  9. Misha profile image77
    Mishaposted 8 years ago

    Funny. Did the last government expanded on it though? At least it looks like that based on what I read here. smile

  10. jiberish profile image71
    jiberishposted 8 years ago

    Nicomp just wrote a great Hub on this topic, it has all the information, as well as the income table required to get a free phone.  http://hubpages.com/hub/Fun-Facts-About … ent-Phones

  11. tksensei profile image60
    tksenseiposted 8 years ago

    Start passing out the free cell phones and watch those unemployment numbers melt away!

  12. egiv profile image67
    egivposted 8 years ago

    Why are you all so afraid of helping others in need? Have we really become so individualistic and greedy that we just blindly attack all government programs that try and help people difficult situations?

    1. Flightkeeper profile image74
      Flightkeeperposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      That's the problem.  The definition for in need keeps changing.  Are they really in need?

    2. tksensei profile image60
      tksenseiposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      "Afraid" yeah, that's it...and anyone who isn't a socialist hates "others in need"...yeah, that's it...


      roll

      1. egiv profile image67
        egivposted 8 years agoin reply to this

        Americans are afraid of being "forced" to spend your hard-earned money on someone who doesn't deserve it, no? Terrified, I would say, based on this forum (although I never accused anybody of hating others in need, thanks for putting words in my mouth). It just seems hypocritical that they are ok with spending an amount of money exponentially greater on the war, then get all hyperventilated over a relatively small government program.

        Fear is used by branding people with taboo names like "socialist" to try and discredit them. McCarthy was good at it, a great American hero, just like Glenn Beck today. You're in good company.

        1. profile image0
          Madame Xposted 8 years agoin reply to this

          Fine - spend your money on it.

        2. ledefensetech profile image72
          ledefensetechposted 8 years agoin reply to this

          Why is it that America, who is the most generous nation in the world, is constantly demonized for wanting to choose which causes to support? 

          Small government program?  The war cost about 500 billion dollars, the recent surge in government programs have cost 1.4 trillion dollars.  That's almost three times as much.  As for supporting the war, you  must have missed all the protests and the low poll numbers the Bush administration had.  But you can't fight city hall, they'll just ignore you.  It seems that's as true for welfare programs as it is for warfare programs.

          As for associating Glenn Beck with McCarthy, that's reaching man.  Do you even read what you write before you post it?  Has Beck called for interring people into camps?  Does he claim to have a "secret" list of high ranking Communists in the government?  No.  He exposes them every night on TV and asks the other side to refute him.  To date they haven't.  Which leads one to suspect the other side cannot refute him because he's telling the truth.

          1. egiv profile image67
            egivposted 8 years agoin reply to this

            Reaching? He called Obama racist, among the list of other exaggerated names used to try and scare people into not liking him. They are obviously not the same person with the same actions, it's their tactics that are the same. It's also very self-serving to call America the most generous nation in the world. On what exactly are you basing that?

            The large amount of spending Obama has done has to do more with saving the economy than wasting money on useless programs, but that's another argument and economics isn't really a road I feel like going down. My point is just that it's depressing to see harmless social programs like this demonized so quickly and rashly, that's all.

            1. ledefensetech profile image72
              ledefensetechposted 8 years agoin reply to this

              Who called Obama racist?  You went all vague on me.

              Show me an example where large amounts of government spending have saved any economy.  All that spending is just a way to buy votes, it isn't to save anything.  The fact that you can say something like that just goes to prove that you don't know as much as you think you do.

              1. egiv profile image67
                egivposted 8 years agoin reply to this

                Haha... Glenn Beck did, I thought everybody knew that by now.

                One example? World War II. Whew, that was easy.

                1. profile image0
                  Madame Xposted 8 years agoin reply to this

                  Good heavens! And at what cost?

                  1. ledefensetech profile image72
                    ledefensetechposted 8 years agoin reply to this

                    You'll note he didn't go into that whole "Unconditional Surrender" abortion made policy by our Glorious Leader, FDR.  Have you heard that story?  A reporter blindsided him at a press conference concerning possible negotiation with dissident elements in Germany and he said later that he blanked.  All he could remember was that they called Grant "Unconditional Surrender", so that's what he stammered.  That stupid comment not only increased the duration of the European fighting, but also gave "Uncle Joe" Stalin a stick to beat us with, not that he didn't have enough agents in the West beating the tired drum of "Second Front Now". 

                    Nice to see he's so blase about the most destructive war in the history of the world.  The only thing I'll add is that we won that war despite the politicians.

              2. Ralph Deeds profile image66
                Ralph Deedsposted 7 years agoin reply to this

                My recollection is that Glenn Beck absurdly accused President Obama of hating white Americans or words to that effect.

                "Show me an example where large amounts of government spending have saved any economy."

                Open your eyes, it's happening right now. Keynesian economics long ago was adopted as the standard, most widely accepted theory of economic fluctuations and appropriate measures to keep them from getting out of control.
                You prattle on about economics as if you were an expert while preaching outmoded, discredited fringe theories as if they were the Gospel.

          2. Ralph Deeds profile image66
            Ralph Deedsposted 7 years agoin reply to this

            It's hardly reaching, both were alcoholics and both were reckless in making false accusations against good Americans.

  13. profile image0
    Madame Xposted 8 years ago

    I guess it should really be called the "Reagan phone" smile

    1. Flightkeeper profile image74
      Flightkeeperposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      Hah! Fat chance that the left will ever give credit to Republicans for social programs that they deem good.  Your friend called it the Obama phone not the Reagan phone.

      1. livelonger profile image95
        livelongerposted 8 years agoin reply to this

        I applaud Reagan for a very good idea that clearly has lasted over 20 years. Proof he wasn't all bad at all (unless you are a strong fiscal conservative, in which case this just adds insult to injury).

        1. Flightkeeper profile image74
          Flightkeeperposted 8 years agoin reply to this

          Wow, that recognition was unexpected. I thought all the liberals thought he was worse than Hitler.

          1. livelonger profile image95
            livelongerposted 8 years agoin reply to this

            Did any liberal say that? Or did you just make an irresponsible assumption?

            1. Flightkeeper profile image74
              Flightkeeperposted 8 years agoin reply to this

              Read my post. It was what I thought. I can still have them.

              1. livelonger profile image95
                livelongerposted 8 years agoin reply to this

                I did. If you have a thought that all liberals think Reagan was worse than Hitler, that can be based on something you read/heard or it could be a figment of your imagination. Of course, you're entitled to believe whatever you want to believe, reality notwithstanding. smile

                1. Flightkeeper profile image74
                  Flightkeeperposted 8 years agoin reply to this

                  Well thank you.

          2. Ralph Deeds profile image66
            Ralph Deedsposted 7 years agoin reply to this

            Reagan was a communist or socialist before he met Nancy who taught him to consult his horoscope before making decisions.

  14. Flightkeeper profile image74
    Flightkeeperposted 8 years ago

    @egiv - and that incredible level of debt that Bush 2 accumulated was more than exceeded by Obama in less than 2 months.  But i don't hear you complaining about that.

  15. sooner than later profile image56
    sooner than laterposted 8 years ago

    Wait, who pays for the phone?

    1. Flightkeeper profile image74
      Flightkeeperposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      The government.

      1. sooner than later profile image56
        sooner than laterposted 8 years agoin reply to this

        me and u, pursian tink.

        I love your new avatar btw.

        1. Flightkeeper profile image74
          Flightkeeperposted 8 years agoin reply to this

          Thanks!

  16. profile image55
    Hosesposted 8 years ago

    All of those people hating the program because its Obama's plan, just letting you know the program started before Obama's adminstration. So all this talk about this being example of his socialism doesnt really work because he has nothing to so with it.

    1. Ralph Deeds profile image66
      Ralph Deedsposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      Keynesian pump priming is hardly socialist. It helps capitalism from self-destructing as it nearly did in this country in the 1930s.

  17. profile image0
    ralwusposted 7 years ago

    I think it is cool! Maybe I can get one?

  18. MikeNV profile image80
    MikeNVposted 7 years ago

    If anyone is against the "waste" in Government it's me.  But I have no problem with a program that helps people get back to work if in fact that is what these phones are used for and that purpose, and it should not be too hard to figure that out as it's pretty easy to see what numbers are called.

    In my view Obama has done a lot of things that are leading us down the road to financial disaster at a much faster pace.  He is not the cause of the disaster he is just accelerating the pace.

    The root cause is money... and the people who control the money.  Obama is just a mouthpiece for the Status Quo which is both Republican and Democratic.

    In the past 30 years we have had a lot of Republicans and Democrats in office... but none of them did anything to "fix" the Central Bank which allowed for a massive debt build up and our current crisis.

    1. Ralph Deeds profile image66
      Ralph Deedsposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      You've got it just wrong. Obama has been applying conventional economic measures to prevent the economy from going into a very deep prolonged recession or depression. The massive debt build up had nothing to do with the Federal Reserve Bank. It was due to the Bush tax cuts for wealthy Americans, two wars and big spending programs supported by Bush and passed by the GOP controlled Congress--e.g. the prescription drug program added to Medicare in a way that benefited the pharmaceutical companies immensely and was completely un-funded.

  19. profile image0
    cosetteposted 7 years ago

    i think career welfare recipients should be required to submit to drug tests, and chronically unemployed people should be required to do volunteer work like helping charities like Habitat for Humanity etc. because they could learn a trade while simultaneously helping their community.

  20. Misha profile image77
    Mishaposted 7 years ago

    Ralph, did you just get free from a 30 day ban? Did not see you for a while wink

    1. Ralph Deeds profile image66
      Ralph Deedsposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      Nope. I've been away for the holidays and haven't had the time to keep up with HubPages. (I've had a couple of 3-day bans but no 30-dayers.) I've heard rumors that our friend TK has been on a 30-day ban. Perhaps that's contributed to my absence from the forums. Ldtech's ignorance spreading in this thread sparked my interest.

  21. Misha profile image77
    Mishaposted 7 years ago

    Welcome back smile

    1. Ralph Deeds profile image66
      Ralph Deedsposted 7 years agoin reply to this

      Thanks, Misha. I hope you enjoyed the holidays and best wishes for the new year!

      Same to Harvey! You are both gentlemen. If you ever get to Detroit be sure and look me up. We'll have a beer and some fried perch at the Ivanhoe, aka the Polish Yacht Club.

      http://hubpages.com/hub/Good_Friday_Per … eedsphotos

  22. Misha profile image77
    Mishaposted 7 years ago

    LOL Thanks Ralph, I will take you up on your offer if I ever go to Detroit smile

 
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