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One of Every Six Dollars of Americans’ Income is a Handout from the Government

I was shocked by the headline this morning, “1 of every 6 dollars of Americans’ income is government check or voucher.”  USAToday.com had the whole story,

The recession is driving the safety net of government benefits to a historic high, as one of every six dollars of Americans’ income is now coming in the form of a federal or state check or voucher.

Benefits, such as Social Security, food stamps, unemployment insurance and health care, accounted for 16.2% of personal income in the first quarter of 2009

I knew that government assistance was way out of hand but this number put a huge exclaimation point on how bad it has become.  Where are all those dollars coming from?  The story continued,

In all, government spending on benefits will top $2 trillion in 2009 — an average of $17,000 provided to each U.S. household, federal data show.

Average of $17,000 per household!  Where are we spending all this money?  The story explains how cost have increase almost 20% in the first quarter of 2009 alone.

What’s driving the $209 billion increase in benefit costs from a year ago:

Unemployment insurance. One-fourth of the extra spending covers jobless benefits, a program started in the Depression. The stimulus law, passed in February, increased benefits.

• Social Security. The bad economy has prompted a 10%-15% jump in early retirements, the program’s actuary says. A 5.8% increase took effect January 1. Bottom line: $55 billion in new costs.

• Food stamps. Enrollment hit a record 33.2 million people in March, up 5.2 million from last year. The stimulus law boosted the size of the benefit. Average March benefit: $114 per person.

Please notice that when times are hard, and more Americans need help than any other time in recent memory, do we tighten our belts to get out country through the tough times?  No, across the board we INCREASE BENEFITS!

One of every six dollars of income.  An average of $17,000 per household and we are increasing benefits.  And this is pre-Universal Healthcare.  What will it be then, one in every five?  One in every four?

I don’t get it.  Huge numbers of Americans are unemployed, they aren’t paying taxes, there is almost no manufacturing base left in this country to build on and tax revenues are dropping fast than Bill Clinton’s pants in the Oval Office and we are across the board INCREASING BENEFITS.

At least the last two lines in the article shows that someone “gets it”.

Adam Lerrick, economist at the conservative American Enterprise Institute, says the benefits’ explosion will eventually lead to an economic crisis.

“We’ve seen this movie before in many countries. It always has the same ending,” he says.

Our arrogance is leading us down a path of destruction and it may be too late to turn back.  Read that last line again, “It always has the same ending”.  Our ending is total implosion of the US economy and I’m afraid we are getting closer than anyone is willing to admit.  China sees it, Russia sees it, will we wake up and see it before it is too late?

Don’t take my word for it, Monty’s nobody, take 10 minutes, click on the link below and read what the President and Chief Executive Officer or the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas has to say on “the frightful storm of unfunded long-term liabilities” of our government.

Storms on the Horizon by Richard W. Fisher

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