Friday, January 13, 2017

The Path to Hell and Good Intentions

As is often the case, our discussion went far afield.
G2A How and Where Live is a Choice
"Feeding and clothing the desperate is step 1, but step 2 must be helping people work through to self-sufficiency. We have power hungry leftists working not to help people work through to self-sufficiency, but to lock them into ignorance and dependence in order to maintain their political power and control. There is nothing humane in that. 
It is as much the duty of humane and morally straight people to help the desperate escape the grip of grasping leftists as it is to feed and clothe them." Fred 
"If I agree with you about that, will you then admit that what you have just said is that ALL the reasons stem from government (liberal or conservative) actions? I fail to see how a government-run welfare system could be anything else. If it is failing (which it is) it is the fault of government, somewhere, somehow." Jerry 
"Personally I don't think anyone is trying to "lock them into ignorance and dependence in order to maintain their political power and control."" G2A
So that leaves us with an interesting question...  Who's good intentions are leading the poor and unfortunate to hell?  Here are some random concepts:

Liberals  strongly support public employee unions. 
  • Unions protect questionable employees and cause excellent employees to be fired.
  • Unions reward seniority instead of performance, and prevent the highest paid Teachers from being assigned to the most challenging classrooms.
  • Unions resist system changes and improvements that put their power structure, compensation and job security at risk. 
  • The Liberals believe that employees should be treated fairly and that everyone is strongly intrinsically motivated to work hard. And if they are, the employees will all give 120% and be high performing... (ie better results)
Conservatives strongly fight against government provided family planning and long acting reversible contraception. (and first trimester abortions if the previous fail) 
  • This lack of training and cheap B/C options lead to unwanted pregnancies, sometimes abortions and sometimes babies that the Baby Maker(s) are unprepared or incapable of caring for in a responsible manner.
  • The poor low income Baby Maker(s) now has even less money and time to learn, work, save, improve and escape poverty.
  • The Religious Conservatives believe that providing the services above would be promoting a sinful existence and even an 8 week old fetus is a human life. (ie murder)
The Liberals strongly support providing everyone with food, housing, healthcare, etc.
  • Academically and skills challenged poor individuals with low internal motivation have most everything they need, so they settle into the safety hammock and teach their children the lifestyle. 
  • Liberals believe that no one should want for these things in a rich country like ours and that everyone will give 120% if we just provide the basics.
Conservatives strongly fight against funding parent education, early childhood education, reduced cost quality childcare, etc.
  • These Baby Makers who were raised in challenged households with poor Parent role models are stressed out and have no clue how to Parent.  So they do what their Role Model did... For better or worse.
  • The kids are subject to few experiences, poor role modelling, little kindergarten prep and come to Kindergarten physically, socially and academically unprepared.  
  • Worse yet, they come with many unacceptable habits, beliefs and behaviors that must be unlearned before they can progress normally.
  • Conservatives think it is best to keep their taxes low, control where there money goes, force the Baby Maker to be accountable.
Liberals and Conservatives both strongly support the right for people to be Baby Makers with no prior qualifications, capabilities, training, etc.
  • Many child(ren) are left to be raised with little oversight by Baby Maker(s) who were too foolish, irresponsible and/or neglectful to practice safe sex.
  • Many  child(ren) are left to be raised with little oversight by Baby Maker(s) who have little education, maturity, income and/or support systems.
  • Some of the least responsible and capable adults end up with the most children
  • Conservatives believe the government should not control family behavior and the "Parent(s)" should have the authority. (ie they know best)
  • Liberals believes that everyone deserves those little bundles of joy, and society should be happy to pay for them.
Well there are some of the reasons why the USA has large populations of under educated, socially inept, immature, not work ready, morally challenged, financially poor, etc people roaming the streets.  Now I truly believe that everyone wants to stop this terrible problem, unfortunately each of their beliefs and actions have terrible negative consequences that prevent it's solution or propagate it's spread.

That is enough for now, but I think I may need to add more to this later. Thoughts?


Anonymous said...

Conservatives strongly fight against government provided family planning and long acting reversible contraception. (and first trimester abortions if the previous fail)

Do conservative oppose family planning? Or is it government support of family planning they oppose? If it's the case that they object to government funding of family planning, are those objections specific to family planning, or are the objections general, that is, a part of opposition to government funding of health care altogether?


jerrye92002 said...

"It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for certain that just ain't true." -Mark Twain

I don't think it does a lick of good to sit and debate, from our lofty perches, what the po' folks think or believe or do, or WHY they do what they do. It IS reasonable for us to observe that there appear to be social pathologies at work, and to inquire as to what we, through government action, may have contributed to it. Whatever it is, it is almost certainly government action that has created the current situation and thus must "undo" it. Government has spent many TRILLIONS of dollars to "eliminate poverty" and seem to have made it worse-- more deeply rooted and no less prevalent.

I think the time has come to forget about "liberal good intentions" or "evil conservatives" and start demanding that we do what WORKS. If government-run ECE or ECFE produced positive, measurable improvement, we should do that. If government-provided health care reduced unwed motherhood, we should keep doing that. If requiring able-bodied recipients to work or train for work, with a 5 year lifetime limit on benefits worked, we should do that. Or we might choose something, or combination of somethings, that worked still better.

It's really quite simple. If the po' folk are not improving their lot with the current carrots and sticks, it's time to try different carrots and different sticks. You might even try asking them what they need to help themselves. You might learn that what you know just ain't so.

John said...

Unfortunately since the Liberals and Conservatives are so entrenched in believing that THEIR PATH is the best one and refuse to work together... And worse yet, they both seem to believe that the other group is out to harm the unfortunate folks, so they become even more passionate and irrational.

I don't hold out much hope for a quick solution...

Somehow we need to help people learn Lifes Greatest Lessons. And help them to delay having kids until they are mature, educated, responsible and in a stable relationship.

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately since the Liberals and Conservatives are so entrenched in believing that THEIR PATH is the best one and refuse to work together...

I am sure both liberals and conservatives believe their path is better, that's why each is on it. As a moral relativist, I am very comfortable with the notion that people disagree with me. On occasion, I have been known to disagree with myself.

I don't think by in large those who disagree with me are evil or out to harm anyone. It's moral absolutists, not moral relativists who are more vulnerable to that line of thinking, I believe.

The issue that we are dealing with now nationally, is health care. The problem there isn't a disagreement with overall objectives; there is wide agreement on those, but on how they are to be achieved. The more specific problem now is that while Republicans have voted 60 times to repeal Obamacare, they haven't once passed a program of their own despite their control of both houses of Congress. It's quite clear to me that their failure in this regard isn't the result of any moral failing, it's simply a matter of near complete policy cluelessness.


John said...

We don't have a healthcare problem. We have the best healthcare in the world.

As described in this post, we have a low household income problem. Which means we have millions of households who can not afford to pay for their own health care / insurance...

Now if most households were made up of 2 well educated and/or skilled Parents who shared expenses, encouraged healthy living, shared child raising duties, etc... Things would be very different.

jerrye92002 said...

"I am sure both liberals and conservatives believe their path is better,..."

That's why I do not think you can mark these opposing positions as equal. Looked at objectively, the liberal path has obviously failed and the conservative path holds promise, at the very least. Liberals believe only that good intentions make good policy, and when reality intrudes, they insist on substituting their own. In their world, the ACA is affordable universal coverage, the welfare system is helping people to a "better life," and illegal immigrants are all innocently "contributing" to our economy.

jerrye92002 said...

From Bloomberg, no less!

Fighting a real war on poverty
Nearly 23 percent of Americans who call a major American city home today live in poverty. And the rate is growing: from 2000 – 2013, the poverty rate in the 20 largest cities in America grew by nearly 36 percent, to this new “normal of 23 percent.” Nationally, the number of Americans living in poverty grew more modestly: from 11.3 percent in 2000 to 14.8 percent in 2014.

However, there’s one city that has defied this trend and saw a declining rate in the number of its residents living in poverty: New York City. According to a recent article in the “Washington Monthly”, “New York City’s poverty rate has defied national trends by declining. While New York once suffered one of the highest poverty rates among the country’s largest cities, today it boasts one of the lowest, with a smaller share in poverty than in Los Angeles, Chicago, Phoenix and Houston, among others.”

How did this happen? Former Mayor Michael Bloomberg declared not just a “war on poverty” but a “data-driven” war on poverty. These innovative programs were a by-product of Bloomberg’s support of the innovative welfare reform legislation that was passed by then-Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich and signed into law by President Bill Clinton. A key requirement of that historic welfare reform legislation was a work-focused welfare policy. Yet the NYC mayor saw failing results of nearly every welfare program that the federal government put into place. Bloomberg said, “Every other antipoverty program that has been tried has failed to get the national poverty rate below 11 percent. So what are your options? Do nothing or dress up the same old failed ideas? We have other options, but only if we are not afraid of thinking outside the box, even if that means breaking old taboos.”

In 2006, Bloomberg launched an experiment to eradicate poverty in NYC. The citywide initiative was based out of a new department appropriately called the Center for Economic Opportunity (CEO) and, over time, would roll out 30 new initiatives – some successful, some not so much. Experimental programs were encouraged but each one need to have an evaluation strategy so that even the most controversial idea was eligible to be tried. Successful programs that achieved results were allowed to continue; those unable to demonstrate even modest success were quickly discontinued.

Thousands of government officials have, over the past 40 years, continued to wage a war on poverty with very limited results. Bloomberg showed in these innovative experiments, that poverty can be dramatically lowered but it takes innovation and experimentation – something that most government agencies are unable to do. Some of the CEO experiments were very controversial: “Family Rewards, a program that provided cash payments to the poor if they took such positive actions as sending children to school. Other efforts – such as program called ‘Paycheck Plus’ – was aimed at tackling a growing conundrum: falling work rates for low-skilled men.”

A major part of CEO’s mission was to record their results and to share them with other cities willing to do what it takes to help Americans escape poverty. Rather than forcing small business owners to comply with a crushing list of local government mandates, New York City officials were serious about eradicating poverty. Our local officials in Minneapolis and St Paul appear to be more interested in fighting a war with our small business owners and job creators.

John said...

AMAC Reducing Poverty

About AMAC

I think I will need to do a bit more research.

John said...

Anti Poverty Report

John said...

"I do not think you can mark these opposing positions as equal."

Of course I can...

Unplanned pregnancies are a HUGE contributor to the on going poverty disaster. We have the medications to reduce this problem, however Conservatives keep fighting making them readily available and free.

Then of course there is the Conservative resistance to making sex education, parent education and early childhood education free and readily accessible for these incompetent irresponsible and untrained Baby Makers.

John said...


CEO Family Rewards Evaluation

"During the three years the program operated, the average participating family earned
nearly $9,000 in rewards, or roughly $3,000 in each year, leading to large reductions in poverty.
The program did not affect school outcomes for elementary or middle school students, but did
improve outcomes for the ninth-graders in the study who were performing at a proficient level
or better academically when they entered, with sizable effects on grade promotion and on
graduation. In the health area, early, positive effects on visits to the doctor and health status
faded, although there were continued impacts on health coverage and, especially, dental visits.
Finally, the program led to modest increases in employment throughout the follow-up period.
Family Rewards 2.0 includes rewards for the following milestones (see Table ES.1):
• Education: Students are rewarded for high attendance, good grades, performance
on state core exams, and taking college entrance exams.
• Health: Families receive payments for obtaining medical and dental checkups
for each family member.
• Work and training: Parents receive payments for full-time work and for
earning General Educational Development (GED) certificates."

jerrye92002 said...

Ah, but can you prove that making birth control "readily available and free" that poverty would be reduced? We already have evidence that these other measures, up until CEO at least, have been largely ineffective.

I presume your extract from the CEO report was to prove that those who benefitted the most from CEO were those on the margin and already doing some of these desirable things to help themselves. What's wrong with that? Wouldn't that be what we would expect from any solution to such a problem? We don't start with those deepest in the hole; we start with those easiest to reach. When our existing programs are making the problem worse everywhere else, these programs are clearly doing better. Do you really want to argue with success?

John said...

Actually I wasn't trying to prove anything. I was just doing research and placing the links here for general consumption.

I am ecstatic that the public and private organizations are working together in New York City, though even now I am not sure which programs are working. Since it is a big Liberal city, I have to assume that B/C and abortion clinics are readily available. At least more so than in a lot of the Red States.

So how will we know if it is the Liberal or Conservative path that is working? Or is it working because they decided to stop fighting and chose to start working together to actually help the unfortunate people.

Laurie said...

so I am a little confused about your views, John, about what you want to do about the baby makers and the free loaders. Do you want to cut them off from govt assistance or make govt assistance more effective? I think most liberals would be in favor of making govt assistance more effective. If you were appointed to head up a task force to make policy recommendations about getting people off govt assistance, what would you recommend? Are you just going to slash the funding for these programs?

jerrye92002 said...

The whole point I was "ecstatic about" was that the CEO system was actually evaluating results,stopping those things that did not deliver positive results and expanding those that did. Also, it was a collection of little "tailored" programs that led to something like an "IEP" in education. Obviously what is going on in the rest of the country is NOT working and needs to be "repealed and replaced" with something like this. Since nobody seems to know how to solve the problem in one great big 2200-page piece of legislation, let's let the states experiment and then pass the results around for everybody to adopt.

jerrye92002 said...

Laurie, I've been wondering that, too. What do we do for the babies already made?

John said...

I am fine with the states experimenting as long as the Feds preferably set the expectations and measurement tools, like they finally are for education.

Too many States have claimed success in the past by setting very low standards. And often it is the Red states.

jerrye92002 said...

That's not good enough. The states should experiment and set their own expectations. The federal government should collect the statistics and act as clearinghouse for what works and what doesn't. And if they want to provide the funding in block grants, no strings, that is fine, too.

States that "set low standards" have nonetheless set standards, those standards suit them and their citizens just fine (or they would change them), and the fact you don't like them is irrelevant. If the federal government wants to suggest that New York state is making better progress against poverty than Mississippi is, and has statistics, by all means that is part of their "job." And if MS wants to talk to NY about how they're doing it, that's great. It likely won't help, but it's great, which is the reason the Fed should stay out of it.

And what are they setting for education? Common core, and then demanding we all teach to the test? Bad idea.

jerrye92002 said...

MN must be a red state. Graduation rates went up after the DFL eliminated the HS graduation test.

John said...


Poverty Rate by State
Checkout this graph for another view of who has the worst problems. Children under age 6 living in poverty (<100% FPL) whose parent(s) have no
high school degree 2008 to 2010

John said...

"In three states (Mississippi, New Mexico and Texas), 10 to
11 percent of children under age 6 are living in poverty and
have parents with no high school degree."

Now aren't these the folks who supposedly value human life and little babies???

jerrye92002 said...

You see, that's the fatal conceit-- that one-size-fits-all federal programs exactly fit every individual circumstance. I would wager that the FPL of income would go a lot further for a Mississippi Delta farm family, with a big garden and a lot of fish in the Yazoo river, than it would for a single mother of 3 in the South Bronx of New York.

And no, those aren't the folks who value human life and little babies. We ALL are.

John said...

I am not sure...

If we all valued little babies, we wouldn't allow irresponsible, immature and/or incapable adults to make and raise them without close oversight.

Remember that to drive a car legally you need to be able pass tests and afford insurance.

To be a Baby Maker... You just need to have poorly protected sex and say you want to keep it.

John said...

Good Point about one FPL though...

Apparently there is a better mousetrap available. SSS vs FPL

jerrye92002 said...

"If we all valued little babies,..." There's that conceit, again. WE all do; you are talking as if YOU get to be the judge of who does and does not. YOU get to decide who is "irresponsible, etc."

I will also point out that a lot of people can properly operate a motor vehicle without submitting to some bureaucratic nonsense. And many of those who have licenses make a lot of "mistakes."

Rather than create some fascistic "master race," let's concentrate on insuring parents and children have the freedom and opportunity to succeed.

jerrye92002 said...

Say, that SSS sounds like a great idea, until they started with that "set wages" and "living wage" nonsense. And from the Mississippi "implementation," it appears to be a sensible "holistic" approach to poverty, which is needed, but that is it-- a "measurement" with no real attempt, currently or reasonably proposed, to alter the situation measured. Like those commercials for a "dental monitor."

John said...

"insuring parents and children have the freedom and opportunity to succeed."

Excellent idea if we add free birth control and morning after pills.

You want freedom... Let's give them freedom... Not punish them because they are poor...

John said...

And don't forget free parenting and early ed.

jerrye92002 said...

I would rather they have the freedom and opportunity to get birth control and, maybe, those harmful morning after pills. And I don't count giving them freedom and opportunity as punishment. I do count allowing them to stay in dependency as such. The SSS is a great idea-- a "holistic" approach as I said-- but you can't just measure something and walk away. At some point you have to try to positively effect something and then measure how well you did it. What I would really like is to break down that SSS to the individual level, and assign somebody-- let's call them a "social worker"-- to work with them (and several others, obviously) on improving their circumstance.