Among the long list of humbling jobs I've had, one in particular taught me a lot about the modern day welfare state. During my high school days as a grocery store carry-out I observed the buying habits of innumerable shoppers including those on the government dole, back in the day when food stamps were actually paper booklets that users would tear out like coupons.
Even as a teenager I was troubled to see welfare recipients lean on the taxpayers for food stamps to purchase food but still have enough cash on hand to buy their beer and cigarettes. Evidently California is bothered by this spectacle too, but for exactly the opposite reason. The Left Coast Rebel explains...
California Handing out Money for Booze and Cigs: One News Story that sums up the Entire Welfare State Disaster
On a straight party-line vote California lawmakers gave the green light for welfare recipients to purchase alcohol and tobacco products using taxpayer money. The insanity in the Golden State continues despite the state’s $23 billion deficit and double-digit unemployment.And as if that weren't bad enough: California Welfare: It's Worse Than You Think
The Golden State doles out welfare benefits through the CalWORKS program. In the past welfare recipients were not allowed to buy beer and cigarettes, but compassionate state lawmakers decided it wasn’t fair to stop TAXPAYER money from being used to subsidize non-essential bad habits.
California welfare recipients are able to use state-issued debit cards to withdraw cash on gaming floors in more than half of the casinos in the state, a Los Angeles Times review of records found.Sigh. I've said it before but it's worth repeating: Before we sell California to China or go Lex Luther on the San Andreas Fault, let's be sure to save the Left Coast Rebel.
The cards, provided by the Department of Social Services to help recipients feed and clothe their families, work in automated teller machines at 32 of 58 tribal casinos and 47 of 90 state-licensed poker rooms, the review found.