The dependency culture may now be officially irreversible, at least in 70% of all states.
Via Fox News:
Welfare pays more than a minimum-wage job in 35 states, creating little incentive for Americans to take entry-level work and likely increasing their long-term dependency on government help, according to a new study by the libertarian think tank Cato Institute.The finds come 17 years after the Clinton administration, with bipartisan support from Congress, passed landmark welfare reform legislation that was supposed to move Americans away from entitlements and into the workforce.However, “welfare benefits continue to outpace the income that most recipients can expect to earn from an entry-level job,” the study authors said. “And the balance between welfare and work may actually have grown worse in recent years.”Among the other findings is that welfare in 13 states pays more than $15 an hour, compared with the federal hourly minimum wage of $7.25.
In 13 states you get double the minimum wage for staying at home? To use the tired expression, in what universe does that make sense?
Of course you can expect to hear from liberals the logic-deficient argument that the situation simply requires that the minimum wage needs to be increased to above the welfare rate. Of course doing so would simply drive businesses out of those states or ultimately, if it were a federally mandated minimum wage, off shore. The unintended consequence (or perhaps intended) of such action would be drive yet more people onto welfare rolls.
If the Cato findings make headlines, expect the left to try to shape the language of the debate. Expect minimum wage and welfare to go the way of global warming (now AGW or climate change) and be replaced with terms like living wage, and poverty threshold. The important thing for conservatives to do is not let that hijacking occur. The issue is simple:
Welfare payments are too high, welfare rolls are too high, and jobs are the answer. Period.