( – promoted by Paul R. Ferro)
How do you respond to an academic/journalist who states on a popular website, “So as Charlie Baker courts female support, and is rightfully called out on the sweetheart comment, let’s not lose sight of his dog-whistle politics and what it means for women of color in the Bay State. When he talks about “requiring work for welfare” he is talking about “getting tough” on black women.”
Simple, with facts. Kudos to Charlie Baker for taking on such an important policy issue while running for Governor. My column from last November explains that if we continue to throw more funding into anti-poverty programs without looking at the results of the programs, we risk only exacerbating the problem.
That column begins as follows:
There are 126 federal anti-poverty programs. There are 33 housing programs, run by four different cabinet departments, which strangely includes the Department of Energy. There are currently 21 different programs providing food or food purchasing assistance. These programs are administered by three different federal departments and one independent agency.
There are eight different health care programs, administered by five separate agencies within the Department of Health and Human Services. And six cabinet departments and five independent agencies oversee 27 cash or general assistance programs. Altogether, seven different cabinet agencies and six independent agencies administer at least one anti-poverty program.
The states and the federal government spend approximately $1 trillion annually on anti-poverty programs. The federal poverty line is $11,490 and taxpayers on average spend $20,989 in total welfare spending per person in poverty every year. That means, we could write large enough checks to every person in poverty, which would get people out of poverty and still save taxpayers over $9,000 per person.
It’s important that when we study anti-poverty programs, we judge them not by how much money we spend, but rather how successfully they lift people out of poverty. If we continue to throw more funding into anti-poverty programs without looking at the results of the programs, we are only exacerbating the problem and making poverty more comfortable.
Here is also a helpful link and summary from a study by the Heritage Foundation.
Paul Craney is the executive director of the Massachusetts Fiscal Alliance