Sunday, February 12, 2012


Many of you are tired of the rhetoric we hear daily from the knuckleheads on the campaign trail. As you know, conservative critics of federal social programs are sounding an alarm that the United States is rapidly becoming an entitlement society. 
A society in which social programs are undermining the work ethic and creating a large class of Americans who prefer to depend on government benefits rather than work. This isn't the first time you've heard this dribble.
Contrary to the Peter Brimelows of the CPAC world, a new CBPP analysis of budget and Census DATA  shows that more than 90 percent of the benefit dollars that entitlement and other mandatory programs spend go to assist people who are elderly, seriously disabled, or members of working households (not to able-bodied, working-age Americans who choose not to work)  This figure has changed little in the past few years.

In the pie chart above you'll see the grey area at he bottom? That's the boogie-man they talk about at the GOP Rallys. What folks dont realize is that 60-70% of that "wasted" spending goes to Medical bills. Visits to the emergency room. 
People without proper healthcare end up getting primary care at the ER when something drastic happens or when something easily preventable gets out of control. I don't have to tell you that the Emergency Room is the most expensive place to get help. 

We do this to ourselves people.


Anonymous said...

That was in 2010!! with statistics more than likely collected from the previous year. How about now?

Sorry Mike. can't quite agree about your comment on entitlement..I visually see what goes on here in Ulster County and city of Kingston. see single young Moms pushing strollers during the day socializing when they should be in school or working, men hanging out in Midtown during a work day with no purpose then to converse, etc. Young people at Dr. appts or ER in the middle of the day, with at least one child in tow, with no work/employment history,producing a medicaid card and on social services benefits.Then there is the abuse of the system which is now starting to appear in crime sections of local newspapers. Gotta go with the perception...

Anonymous said...

Every day that goes by, the realization sinks further in that emergency and catastrophic healthcare needs are a national defense issue. Warfare of the future will focus on health. The defense against this inevitable threat needs to be addressed now. Most of the cost of the technology and equipment needs of the healthcare providers are being borne by the victims of our most dangerous national security threats. Insurance cannot possibly keep up with rising costs. Until priorities of our national security are corrected to alleviate this financial problem, more and more reasonably insurable services will be denied to more people. No one can argue with a split of financial responsibility to correct this problem. We have no issues with separating between elective and necessary care. The logical next step must be taken soon. The current course is not sustainable.

Anonymous said...

I would love to see these statistics broken down to the state and county level. I suspect these numbers do not ring true here in Ulster County. These programs certainly have their place in society, but there seems to be an abuse of the system locally.

Mike Madsen said...

1:24... I know exactly what you speak when it comes to the appearance. Here in Ulster County, particularly in Kingston and Wawarsing, the townships have dumped a higher than sustainable number of safetynet clients on us.
As far as the state is concerned, Ulster County has been giving away the most services per client than anywhere else.

It may seem like I advocate for the continued abuse of the system as it currently operates, but I don't. Someday, my former colleagues will get their shit together and take the issue of funding the county's safety net burden upon themselves.

In the broader scope of this conversation, there are talking heads in both parties that use the welfare mom as the whipping post every election cycle knowing full well that our government subsidizes billions to corporations that reap trillions in profits annually. Those with power dictate who gets the breaks.

It's just nice to see the chart display the big picture once in a while.