Are welfare recipients better off than they were four years ago? It depends on how you define “better off.”
According to the Congressional Research Service, the government spent $746 billion in taxpayer money on a vast array of welfare programs in fiscal year 2011 alone, and the spending increased 32 percent during the Obama administration years.
According to U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions, federal and state welfare expenditures combined totaled a mind-boggling $1 trillion in 2011.
In fiscal year 2009, welfare spending was $563 billion. Originally conceived as a temporary measure for the truly needy, welfare spending has apparently grown faster than any other federal program. The CRS report doesn’t even take into account Social Security and Medicare spending and certain veterans benefits.
The Washington Times reports, “One reason is that more people are qualifying in the weak economy, but the federal government also has broadened eligibility so that more people qualify for programs.”
Most of the taxpayer money is spent on Medicaid and food stamps followed by various other programs including direct cash payments to poor people.
As The Inquisitr has previously reported, approximately 50 percent of American households now receive some type of taxpayer-funded government assistance, and food stamp recipients are at an all-time high.
Some of this money is spent on the government bureaucracy itself and never reaches the welfare recipients. But given that the US seems to to have more social ills than ever before, do you think that welfare and social services spending of this magnitude only creates more self-perpetuating dependency?
Is it possible to get a handle on the staggering deficit and the debt without addressing the massive growth of entitlement programs?