Fraud Upon Fraud


To add insult upon injury--and injury upon insult--the Feds are once again threatening to crack down on Foodstamp fraud. Wait a minute.  Foodstamps are by their very nature fraud, a way of stealing the wealth of working people and giving it to non-workers who use their stamps and cards and allowances to buy luxury food that many working people cannot afford.  I could see setting up depots every so many miles, where the poor could pick up allotments of dried beans, pasta, surplus cheese and vegetables.  That was the original liberal proposal but the wiser Republicans insisted that Foodstamps would be more like money and teach the poor how to pretend to be middle class.  Immediately, the clever poor began trading foodstamps as a currency, selling them at a discount to get money for beer, cigarettes, and drugs.  It was all absolutely predictable, and it will never be any different.

Like all modern welfare programs, foodstamps are a tax on the workers, or, more than a tax, they are a form of systematic robbery.  The only way to aggravate the theft is to pay more worthless government bureaucrats to track down the fraud that is an integral part of the system.  Here's an idea.  Just drop money out of an airplane over the inner cities and let them fight over who gets it.  Who cares how they spend it?  (Alternatively, give them all lifetime credit at McDonald's where they can literally eat themselves to death.)  Then they can fire all the bureaucrats who can move to the cities and join the fight over who gets the benefits.

Thomas Fleming

Thomas Fleming

Thomas Fleming is the former editor of Chronicles: A Magazine of American Culture. He is the author of The Politics of Human Nature, Montenegro: The Divided Land, and The Morality of Everyday Life, named Editors' Choice in philosophy by Booklist in 2005. He is the coauthor of The Conservative Movement and the editor of Immigration and the American Identity. He holds a Ph.D. in classics from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. Before joining the Rockford Institute, he taught classics at the University of Miami of Ohio, served as an advisor to the U.S. Department of Education, and was headmaster at the Archibald Rutledge Academy. He has been published in, among others, The Spectator (London), Independent on Sunday (London), Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, USA Today, Chicago Sun-Times, National Review, Classical Journal, Telos, and Modern Age. He and his wife, Gail, have four children and four grandchildren.

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