Saturday, August 14, 2010

Robbing Peter

I've seen all good people
Turn their heads each day

So satisfied I'm on my way

--I've Seen All Good People
, Yes

Smiling faces all around

Rushing through the busy town
Where do they go
Moving on their way
--Look Through Any Window
, The Hollies


The good, if somewhat dire-sounding recent news: Obama Signs Emergency Bill to Halt Teacher Layoffs:

"Summoned back from summer break, the House on Tuesday pushed through an emergency $26 billion jobs bill that Democrats said would save 300,000 teachers, police and others from election-year layoffs. President Barack Obama immediately signed it into law."

Thing is, money doesn't grow on trees, and what with all the other failures being propped up by the Federal government, the money has to come from somewhere. In this case, it is the Food Stamp program that will take a hit.

Nationally, 20% of Americans use food stamps. In Florida, the amount allotted for a single individual is $111. That amount won't take you very far into the month, even in today's supposedly non-inflated economy.

But the problem with taking funds from food stamps to pay for teachers is that their charges will be affected. See, one in four kids suffers from "food insufficiency", which means they're hungry. One in four kids rely on food stamps. More than half of all children between 1 and 20 will rely on food stamps at some point in their lives.

Teaching hungry kids doesn't work so well. This is robbing Peter to Pay Paul.

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Anonymous barcalounger said...

Lisa do you know if this affects the school lunch program also?

Yes, 40 million people are on foodstamps. That's 1 in 8 of us.

Sunday, August 15, 2010 at 1:04:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger The Minstrel Boy said...

like my dear ol' grandpappy used to always say:

"if you rob peter to pay paul, paul will fucking vote for you every november."

or, words to that effect anyway.

Sunday, August 15, 2010 at 4:14:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...


8.2.10 Education Week says
Clock is Ticking on School Lunch Legislation. I don't know where the funding bill stands. I do know that Head Start has taken tremendous hits over the last few years.

It is hard to justify reduction on food stamps, when (fr. Reuters):

"The benefits go directly to people who spend it at local grocery stores, supporting businesses and jobs, said Vollinger of the Food Research and Action Center.

"They (the benefits) don't sit in a pocket," she said, pointing to USDA estimates that $5 in food stamp spending generates $9 in economic activity."

Sunday, August 15, 2010 at 10:10:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous basilbeast said...

Let's do some simple math. If that 26 billion is divided equally among the states, each gets 500 million, plus change. Then, if that sum is adjusted according to population and need, my state Kansas ( 3 mil vs. California's 37 mil ) doesn't get anything near half a billion. And Ca's been shedding teachers like a soggy dog shakes water.

Our state requires its school districts to have their budget set before the end of school in spring. Which means their staffing is set and will not change just because the state got some new federal money. I assume most states function in this way. Plus, all this upset will make many school districts wary of hiring new staff in the future.

Not until the economy picks up again.

My guess is that not many teaching jobs will be saved, as opposed to those police and firefighters and other emergency personnel people brought back, mainly because, HEY KIDS, the new school year has started or will in just a couple of weeks. I do not begrudge their good fortune.

What I do gripe about, however, is Obama's decided emphasis on making Republicans happy. Or as his PS Gibbs put it, "Professional Leftists" will never be satisfied until we have Canadian single-payer health and no Pentagon.

I'm still fuming over that crap.


Monday, August 16, 2010 at 9:15:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Peter of Lone Tree said...

Three of the people in that photograph don't look like they've missed too many meals.

Monday, August 16, 2010 at 10:45:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...


Exactly my thought. That, and the vapidity of their faces ...

Monday, August 16, 2010 at 3:35:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Terrible said...

Ahhhh but you miss the point Ranger! Cutting food stamp funding will mean they will have to lower the number of individuals eligible. Then they can say "See it's now only 1 in 8 children that rely on food stamps. What a good job we are doing".

Sometimes I think I may be a tad cynical.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010 at 4:03:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Terrible said...

oops! Lisa not Ranger. Sorry about that. Didn't I say I'd try to pay more attention. And I will when I can afford it. ;)

Tuesday, August 17, 2010 at 4:50:00 PM GMT-5  

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