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Thread: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

  1. #1
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    Default Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    I wonder how many times the states will make this same mistake.

    It's crony capitalism. And it's also some really sweet 'victim-blaming'.

    In fact, these programs always discover that folks in the program fail quite rarely. Even in those programs - like this one in W. Virginia - who preselect for 'likely' drug users. So who benefits? Some well-connected drug-testing firm owner. In Florida - it was the Governor himself. Talk about brazen. The taxpayer foots the bill. The victims are victimized and dehumanized. No significant drug use is found, so no benefits can be denied, and the promised 'savings' never happen. Corruption and incompetence. Brought to you by Today's Republican Party. In this case - Republican Sen. Ryan Ferns - Majority Leader.

    https://thinkprogress.org/west-virgi...-6c426d9258af/
    Last edited by David G; 01-13-2018 at 10:34 PM.
    David G
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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    David G
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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    There is a secondary goal, besides welfare for the drug testing corporations, and that's hassel and humiliation of the poor.

    Hassel is excused, to the extent that there's deliberation here, as the way to make getting any benefits much less desirable than almost anything. Essentially the process becomes a way to coerce labor. Social Darwinists point out that this process simply restores a fact of nature - forage, hunt, or die - that is removed by the bleeding hearts of society.

    Humiliation is more subconscious but you get the sense of it by recalling that old truism that whatever is "cold as charity". The giver puts the recipient through a process of groveling as a way to feel superior. In the early eighties there was a great federal cheese give-away. I organized the Cape Cod effort. I was working with various volunteer groups, church social concerns committees and such. Many of these took very seriously that only the tuely and poignant poor, not the greedy needy, should get cheese and to this end they were proposing verifications more complex than welfare. The costs of such spurous verification far exceeded the value of a brick of ancient processed cheese by-product. The demand to implement complex verification requirements was driven by deep judgmental emotions about poor people.

    No matter how corrupt drug testing programs are, no matter how much money they make political donars and no matter how little drug "abuse" they uncover, the costs and stupidities of these programs pale compared to the emotional satisfaction of simply punishing poor people for looking for help. That's why they come back despite the overwhelming evidence that they do not serve the stated goals.

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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    Judging and 'punishing' the poor is exactly the way to feel superior. If you are not poor, it is because you are a decent, honorable, hard-working git, and God loves you enough to give you stuff. The more he loves you, the more stuff. So of course, if God isn't giving someone enough stuff, they must be guilty of something. They obviously deserve judgement and punishment, and to be kept from getting what's rightfully mine, my share. The rich business man, the one with the obvious wealth, deserves all he can get; God wouldn't give His Bounty to evil fckers, right? So ipso facto, it must be morally superior to oppress anyone to the degree that they are less than a God-Favored Rich Man. Like the fckhead in the White House. That's why the poor will always be with us. God hates 'em. I mean, c'mon, you don't want poor people inside Gods' gated community in the sky, lazing around indolently on the Streets of Gold. Well, do you? Who would want to even go to Heaven if we have to include winos and pimps and druggy lazy poor people in the Heavenly Choir with the Angels. Right?
    Prehumous Entrepid Enplorer of the Innerverse


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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    Quote Originally Posted by David G View Post
    No significant drug use is found, so no benefits can be denied, and the promised 'savings' never happen.
    The goal of drug testing to prevent drug usage not catch people who are using. Those who might take drugs may see the benefits of not taking drugs. Those who do take drugs may see the futility of applying. I am sure some savings are present but do not show up in the data gathered.

    But the limited benefits of welfare programs seem to benefit the taxpayer more than any corruption might benefit these you claim benefit from drug testing.

    A better argument for welfare reform involves supporting more benefits for those in need.
    Life is complex.

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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    Quote Originally Posted by Too Little Time View Post
    The goal of drug testing to prevent drug usage not catch people who are using.
    The goal is NOT to prevent drug usage. Drug usage happens across all social strata, and this program is focused only on the poor. In fact, during the current opioid epidemic, heroin use among people who make $20,000-$49,000 has risen 77%, while it rose only 60% for those making $20,000 and under. LINK

    If you really wanted to prevent drug usage (and not just punish/humiliate the poor), then drug testing ought to happen monthly for everyone. You fail, you lose your income. Of course, no one would agree to that. But for some reason they are happy to impose exactly that consequence on the poorest of us.

    Quote Originally Posted by Too Little Time View Post
    I am sure some savings are present but do not show up in the data gathered.
    You are misinformed. Data shows quite clearly that the costs of implementing these testing programs (as Wisconsin has also done) is significantly greater than the "savings" incurred by taking away welfare payments from poor people who are using drugs.

    Quote Originally Posted by Too Little Time View Post
    A better argument for welfare reform involves supporting more benefits for those in need.
    I agree with you here. Too bad Republicans have decided to instead provide more benefits for those who don't need them instead--and are already using that fact as an excuse to argue that now the limited benefits to the poor still available must be cut.

    Tom
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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    news flash: Drugs are expensive! If you need governmental help just to put food on the table, you probably can't afford to buy drugs too.

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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    Quote Originally Posted by Art Haberland View Post
    news flash: Drugs are expensive! If you need governmental help just to put food on the table, you probably can't afford to buy drugs too.
    Well, yes. But for that small % of folks who are both on welfare, and addicted to some substance, that won't matter. Remember, "There's a hole in daddy's arm where all the money goes"? It has been shown, anecdotally and in various studies, that such a subset exists. It's just not large enough to offset the cost of such programs. Nor enough to justify the perversely punitive Puritanism others have mentioned. The experience of other venues has shown that it's far more efficient and effective to treat addictions as a Public Health issue, instead of an Enforcement issue.
    David G
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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    Quote Originally Posted by WI-Tom View Post
    The goal is NOT to prevent drug usage. Drug usage happens across all social strata, and this program is focused only on the poor. In fact, during the current opioid epidemic, heroin use among people who make $20,000-$49,000 has risen 77%, while it rose only 60% for those making $20,000 and under. LINK

    If you really wanted to prevent drug usage (and not just punish/humiliate the poor), then drug testing ought to happen monthly for everyone. You fail, you lose your income. Of course, no one would agree to that. But for some reason they are happy to impose exactly that consequence on the poorest of us.
    I am sure some people who are employed are required to take drug tests. Those tests are used to prevent drug usage. So I think you could be wrong in your initial claim.

    Your claim about widespread drug usage is certainly valid. But the welfare programs do not have the authority to test everyone. Just those on welfare. I am certain that some people here would object to mandatory monthly drug tests.

    You are misinformed. Data shows quite clearly that the costs of implementing these testing programs (as Wisconsin has also done) is significantly greater than the "savings" incurred by taking away welfare payments from poor people who are using drugs.
    Selection bias makes the data invalid. You might refer to your comment I quoted above where you state that those earning under $20K also use drugs. It is not that those might qualify for welfare are not taking drugs. It is that those who might qualify for welfare and are taking drugs are less likely to apply for welfare.

    Much as we agree that there should be more benefits for those on welfare, we might agree that there should be more help for those with drug problems.
    Last edited by Too Little Time; 01-14-2018 at 11:12 AM. Reason: corrected programs to problems.
    Life is complex.

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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    I'm all for help with drug programs. And with drug problems.

    The former should be medical so that the latter don't involve crime.

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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    Quote Originally Posted by Ian McColgin View Post
    I'm all for help with drug programs. And with drug problems.

    The former should be medical so that the latter don't involve crime.
    My typo. I should have said: Help for those with drug problems.
    Life is complex.

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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    Quote Originally Posted by Too Little Time View Post
    Your claim about widespread drug usage is certainly valid. But the welfare programs do not have the authority to test everyone. Just those on welfare.
    However, "the welfare programs" are not the ones deciding to test anyone. That decision is being made by Republican legislators--who would have the authority to impose testing more broadly through legislation, but are choosing to target only the poor, requiring taxpayers to finance the tests, and giving everyone else a free pass.

    It's very much NOT aimed at preventing drug use or helping those with addiction problems. It's punishment for the poor, who Republicans seem to regard as sub-human, undeserving of empathy, and generally contemptible for their failure to be rich. And, of course, let's not forget that when the poor vote, they generally don't vote Republican. But I'm sure that's a coincidence.

    Except, there's THIS LINK which suggests otherwise, according to one of Nixon's top advisors, domestic policy chief John Erlichman:

    "The Nixon campaign in 1968, and the Nixon White House after that, had two enemies: the antiwar left and black people," former Nixon domestic policy chief John Ehrlichman told Harper's writer Dan Baum for the April cover story published Tuesday.
    "You understand what I'm saying? We knew we couldn't make it illegal to be either against the war or black, but by getting the public to associate the hippies with marijuana and blacks with heroin. And then criminalizing both heavily, we could disrupt those communities," Ehrlichman said. "We could arrest their leaders. raid their homes, break up their meetings, and vilify them night after night on the evening news. Did we know we were lying about the drugs? Of course we did."
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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    Republican politicians in Florida were mostly for drug testing to funnel tax monies to the governor's pals but they were also cynical enough to know that these drug testing programs also serve to reduce welfare rolls.

    Here's how it works in combination with the work requirement. Schedule the drug test to conflict with working hours. The test site is at least an hour's difficult travel each way as public transit is not a straight go. There are delays at the test site so figure an hour there. Three hours missed work is grounds for firing and if you lose the job you lose the welfare. Score one for the test. Miss the test and you're off welfare. Score two for the test.

    That's just one of many examples how piling on requirements has nothing to do with clean welfare rolls, rewarding the poignant poor and punishing the greedy needy. Rather, the bureaucracy serves the main purpose of hasseling people off the rolls. And at least in Florida the governor and many of the Republican legislators privately (according to a relative to despite being liberal is an ardent golfer, plays with these people, and listens) boast of how it works.

    In their moral corruption and nasty low-life greed, many Republicans know exactly what they are doing and bear profound responsibility for their cruelty. The Republicans who don't know retain their ignorance deliberately.

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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    Quote Originally Posted by Art Haberland View Post
    news flash: Drugs are expensive! If you need governmental help just to put food on the table, you probably can't afford to buy drugs too.
    Same with cigarettes, but almost every time I’m panhandled by an indigenous urbanite on one of my layovers they’ve got one sticking out of thier face.
    I never give them $$. I have bought them a coffee or food.
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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    This from David G.: " No significant drug use is found, so no benefits can be denied, and the promised 'savings' never happen."

    and this from WiTom: "The goal is NOT to prevent drug usage. Drug usage happens across all social strata, and this program is focused only on the poor. In fact, during the current opioid epidemic, heroin use among people who make $20,000-$49,000 has risen 77%, while it rose only 60% for those making $20,000 and under."

    Same policies here from the same political stream. It plays well to the rubes and as David says, finds no significant correction. It's all about scaring the voters.

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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    Let’s have mandatory drug testing for all members of Congress and their staffs. It’s our money they get paid with so we should have the right to call for testing.

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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    Quote Originally Posted by StevenBauer View Post
    Let’s have mandatory drug testing for all members of Congress and their staffs. It’s our money they get paid with so we should have the right to call for testing.
    They actually made that illegal

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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    Quote Originally Posted by WI-Tom View Post
    It's very much NOT aimed at preventing drug use or helping those with addiction problems. It's punishment for the poor,
    That may be the purpose of the rules. It may not be. There seems to be a lot of non-professional opinion of how to handle the drug problem. I don't have the time to develop an opinion for the purpose of this discussion.

    If there is a solution to the drug problem, I think it is best to determine who is affected by the problem. Personally I don't think testing is effective, but I am sure that those who think addiction is a disease have some ideas as to how to determine who has that disease. I would call that testing. I would think that is a good reason for testing.
    Life is complex.

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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    Meanwhile - Japanese companies are conducting urine testing for early detection of cancer!
    https://asia.nikkei.com/Business/Tre...imadzu-taps-AI

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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    well at least those who want a job will have to get drug tested in order to pay for the welfare recipients who may be on drugs.............yes some trade EBT for drugs. Welfare should go to those who deserve it, veterans first, those who are out of a job and of course legal residents. Welfare should be used in emergencies and not as a lifetime commitment. Just sayin

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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    Quote Originally Posted by john l View Post
    Meanwhile - Japanese companies are conducting urine testing for early detection of cancer!
    https://asia.nikkei.com/Business/Tre...imadzu-taps-AI

    I like that idea.

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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    Quote Originally Posted by redeye1962 View Post
    Welfare should be used in emergencies and not as a lifetime commitment. Just sayin
    Jobs should pay enough that people can afford the childcare expenses necessary to holding a job, then.

    And speaking as a veteran myself, why on earth do you think non-veterans are any less deserving of help?

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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    Quote Originally Posted by WI-Tom View Post
    Jobs should pay enough that people can afford the childcare expenses necessary to holding a job, then.

    And speaking as a veteran myself, why on earth do you think non-veterans are any less deserving of help?

    Tom

    We can dream all day long to get paid enough to pay all of our expenses but this is reality. Veterans deserve assistance because as you know veterans put their life on the line for this country. The ultimate price for our freedom. something I admire and thank them whenever possible. BTW thank you for your service.

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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    Quote Originally Posted by redeye1962 View Post
    We can dream all day long to get paid enough to pay all of our expenses but this is reality.
    Well, the reality is that Republicans won't consider raising the minimum wage because they'd rather give tax breaks to the wealthy.

    But beyond my ideological differences with the Republican anti-poverty stance, it is a simple matter of practicality I'm arguing--if you could get a job, but would end up spending all of your wages on childcare because you are working now and can't be with your kids... Well, who in the world can afford to leave welfare?

    Quote Originally Posted by redeye1962 View Post
    Veterans deserve assistance because as you know veterans put their life on the line for this country. The ultimate price for our freedom.
    Migrant farm workers pick the food we eat and don't get VA care or GI Bill assistance. And how much of their lives have they given up for us? How free would you be with nothing to eat?

    Tom
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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    Quote Originally Posted by WI-Tom View Post
    Well, the reality is that Republicans won't consider raising the minimum wage because they'd rather give tax breaks to the wealthy.

    But beyond my ideological differences with the Republican anti-poverty stance, it is a simple matter of practicality I'm arguing--if you could get a job, but would end up spending all of your wages on childcare because you are working now and can't be with your kids... Well, who in the world can afford to leave welfare?

    I got a tax break and I am far from wealthy. I don't think raising the minimum wage will get folks too far due to the possible new tax bracket and lower hours. Childcare is another topic that we all must bear. A decision is made to have a child and certain responsibilities follow. there are folks out there that have children just to get more money............yes they exist.

    Migrant farm workers pick the food we eat and don't get VA care or GI Bill assistance. And how much of their lives have they given up for us? How free would you be with nothing to eat?

    Tom
    I would not want to have the life of a migrant farm worker and is why I studied hard in school and work to learn new things. Not to be cruel but the farm worker has not placed their life on the line like yourself and other vets. If you look at the population of the farm worker compared to the rest of the welfare crowd it is quite small. My guess like most farmers, they may move to an automated farming machines which would put them out of work anyway. McDonalds is doing it by replacing the front line folks by computers and going around the min wage hike.

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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    Quote Originally Posted by redeye1962 View Post
    I would not want to have the life of a migrant farm worker and is why I studied hard in school and work to learn new things. Not to be cruel but the farm worker has not placed their life on the line like yourself and other vets. If you look at the population of the farm worker compared to the rest of the welfare crowd it is quite small. My guess like most farmers, they may move to an automated farming machines which would put them out of work anyway. McDonalds is doing it by replacing the front line folks by computers and going around the min wage hike.
    So, your limiting this to just farmers redeye? What about factory workers? There are some farm produce that can only be picked by hand too.But, what's going to be automated first and can afford to do so, factories.Not sure how this relates to the OP but, carry on with your tangent if you must.

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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    Quote Originally Posted by S.V. Airlie View Post
    So, your limiting this to just farmers redeye? What about factory workers? There are some farm produce that can only be picked by hand too.But, what's going to be automated first and can afford to do so, factories.Not sure how this relates to the OP but, carry on with your tangent if you must.
    no sir just replying to what WI said..............we can expand all day but won't change anyone's opinions. Nice try on the tangent thingy though.

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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    Hey, redeye,

    in post #25 you inserted someone else's paragraph (yours, I think?) into a quotation credited to me. Can you fix that, please? I get enough trouble just from the things I ACTUALLY say without needing to be credited with someone else's comments. Thanks,

    Tom
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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    Quote Originally Posted by redeye1962 View Post
    I would not want to have the life of a migrant farm worker and is why I studied hard in school and work to learn new things.
    Of course you probably realize that not everyone has the luxury of formal education like you and I did. My grandfather left school after 6th grade, my father-in-law after eighth. Many never even get that far.

    As for this:

    Quote Originally Posted by redeye1962 View Post
    Not to be cruel but the farm worker has not placed their life on the line like yourself and other vets.
    It may not be as true as you think:

    Today, migrant farmworkers still suffer mortality and morbidity rates greater than the majority of the American population, due in part to the combination of poverty, limited access to health care, hazardous working conditions, and the lack of regulations. Agriculture remains one of the most hazardous occupations in the US. In 2015, the fatality rate for agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting dropped to 22.8 fatalities per 100,000 workers, but still remained strikingly higher than the overall industry fatality rate of 3.4/100,000. Hispanic workers are more likely than other ethnic groups to be involved in a fatal occupational injury, and recent years’ data have shown increases in fatal work injuries involving Latino workers.4 Farmworkers experience a range of occupational health injuries and illnesses including musculoskeletal strains, lacerations, falls, trauma, exposure to pesticides and other chemicals, heat and cold extremes, and exposure to sun, irritants, and allergens.
    SOURCE

    Tom
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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    makes me glad my job cannot be so easily farmed out.

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    Default Re: Drug Testing Welfare Recipients - redux

    I am all in favor of having such a requirement for Senators and Representatives too.
    Gerard>
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