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Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Buying Junk Food With Food Stamps

I still can’t get over the fact that some people scrutinize other people’s shopping basket looking for food stamp fraud. Do they pick a minority in front of them before peeking or do they check everyone as a routine habit? I’m not a regular shopper, so I wouldn’t know what fancy frozen vegetables are. I don’t like to shop,so if I’m in a grocery line,I don’t want small talk from the cashier nor do I look to see what some people are purchasing and how they are paying.

First, I wouldn’t particularly mind if the government  changed their rules to force a healthier choice for food stamp recipients because it would help the overall problem of nutrition and health care.  I can remember Michelle Obama getting vilified by the right, when she tried to make people aware of the benefits of eating healthy.  I get it ,it's not government intrusion if it's imposed on poor people.

A Victoria online forum poster, Denise Scott has the right to get angry when she sees a violation of the food stamp laws, but she doesn't get to make stuff up.  Cashiers at grocery stores who take food stamps go through a school to learn what can or cannot be purchased with food stamps.  The grocery stores do not want to lose their food stamp license.  Every cashier knows that food stamp recipients cannot buy cigarettes, beer and household items, and they make sure that the camera that’s watching them doesn't see an illegal transaction taking place.  If a violation takes place outside the camera's view, then it's up to people like Denise to tell someone, if she wants to stop fraud.  I think companies take a lot of steps to make sure they are in compliance because one citizen’s complaint will alert the authorities;not to mention the bad PR.

The poster pointed out an illegal food stamp profiteering scenario by Wal-Mart and H-E-B without offering any proof.  In 2012, the government spent $103 billion for food stamps, and CBO predicts that the $110 billion will be spent this year.  The money from food stamps goes to pay the grocer and  stimulates the economy  because the money will be spent to pay employees, truck drivers and farmers, so they can pay their taxes.  When employment is at normal levels, food stamp recipients decrease and those people start paying income taxes. Again, I don't think those companies will jeopardize their license or their reputation for a few bucks.

If we're trying to make a case that some human beings will take advantage of a worthwhile program; point taken but that's throughout society, not just government assistance recipients.  We'll always have that slave mentality when it comes to government assistance.  It's like when we criticize our brother –in- law for buying a six- pack after we just lent him $500 because he was  laid off.  We tell ourselves that we're helping our sister and the children,  so we have to criticize their lifestyles.  I’ll say it again; for the most part, people would rather work and fend for themselves than have people look down at them. They can also avoid those who are  always trying to control all aspects of their lives because they are the ward of someone's ear marked tax money.  That's how some people are.

Some people would like to see all welfare recipients be drug tested.  I could use the pro gun slippery slope logic and say what's next;all those who receive government contracts need to be drug tested? That’s been tried and only 2% of those tested were found to be drug users.

Now I got that out the way and I feel a lot better.


born2Bme said...

If I read that right, how is chocolate covered-strawberries considered candy? Strawberries are ahealthy "red" fruit and chocolate is healthy too.
Although, I do agree that soft drinks should be excluded.

Mike said...

I guess the FDA & SNAP program laws are as complex as our liquor laws...:-)

We were raised on kool aid but yikes there's 200G of sugar in a glass. it's cheap (monetary) but expensive in overall health.

Edith Ann said...

A Virginia Sullivan started this recent crap with her letter, but the posters have fallen right in step with her.

It utterly amazes me that folks think you can buy alcohol and tobacco with food stamps! WHAT IDIOTS!!!

Why do folks think it is their business to tell others how to shop? Good grief! If a Food Stanp recipient blows half of the Food Stamps on T-Bone steaks, it is their problem to figure out where the rest of the month's food is coming from! How many folks do you know that are only going to eat every other week? Get real! It's not like they can go back and ask for more Food Stamps!

I swear to Jesus that if folks spent as much time on the really important stuff as they do on who is buying what at the HEB and Walmart, we'd have far less stuff to discuss than we do now.

There are incentives for eating healthier--farmer's markets now take food stamps. But, really--to deny folks chips or candy? What kind of Nazis are y'all? But, yes, Mike, I agree-it's not government intrusion when it is aimed at poor folks AND a republican is holding the weapon.

And while we're telling folks how to shop, let's force the real welfare queens--corporate America's ceo's--to only purchase high priced foods. No house brands, nothing on sale, no coupons, the Romneys no longer allowed to shop at Costco. Sounds ridiculous, doesn't it? Just like Virginia Sullivan and Denise Scott, et al.

Mike said...

I use to work with a fella who was obsessed with welfare and it seemed like every time he went grocery shopping someone in front of him paid with food stamps. It was always a minority, so we decided to get some fun out of it. We stared asking him questions like what were they wearing and what were they driving. His answer was always some Italian shoes and a Cadillac. And that was thirty years ago but it’s still going on. I imagine today that fellow would say that the food stamp user had an iPhone, a $2000 gold chain around his neck and drove in his Lexis.

I think this all started in the eighties when President Reagan used to talk about the welfare queens and it was picked up his constituents and they in turn passed it on to their children.

It gets worse EA…. Not too long ago, some people were complaining because a mother bought a birthday cake for her child with food stamps. The self-righteous said she could have bought the ingredients and saved the tax payers some money. Really? The single mom was already working two jobs and barely got to spend some time with her child…. Those same people don’t care that we have about 5000 tanks rotting away in a tank graveyard in Las Vegas but we just purchased 300 brand new tanks…Yeah, keep a close watch on the pennies but allow billions of dollars to be spent on things we don’t need.

born2Bme said...

Mike, what you just said about the does the person know if the lady had a working oven or not?

I can honestly say, with much embarrassment, that I have gone out of my way at times to notice what other people have in their carts at check out lines, but only because I was bored and tired at the end of a long day being stuck in long lines and wondering why the hell more lanes weren't open during the peak hours.

The truth is that none of us can possible judge another person by what is in their cart. There could be multiple family members in the same household who are eligible for food stamps....if that is possible?

Mike said...

That’s a good point born.

I don’t check out grocery carts but I do glace at other people’s purchases at Best Buy or Office Depot but I don’t know why..:-)

I don’t know a lot about food stamps but I do know what they can purchase because it’s stated on the government website.

BIGJ said...

A year old or so, before I went to the hospital, I snapped at an idiot for mistaken my bank debit card for a lone star card as he peaked in my wallet.

It is time for those idiots and those like them to live or at least see how the other side live. The Crossroads area is an area that is unfriendly to workers and upper mobility.