Government benefits are intended to, according to the government, "help disadvantaged people," but how disadvantaged are these people, really? Let me use my sister as an example. She is a single mother in her early thirties that has two children by two different fathers. She lives with her current boyfriend, who is not the father of either of her children, as well as their two roommates: the father of her first child, and his current girlfriend.
She is my sister, and I love her, and while I cannot condone her lifestyle, it is her life. The biggest problem that I have is their financial state, and the fact that they are being funded my tax money in the form welfare dollars.
You see, she works as a waitress at a local chain restaurant, and makes quite a bit of money when you count her tips. She takes home about $70-100 a day in tips, most of it as unreported income. If you talk to her, she will tell you that this is because she doesn't get a paycheck, because taxes take that from her. I reply that I pay far more than that in taxes, and she is getting off easy by not reporting all of her tips.
Her boyfriend makes $12 an hour at his job, but since they are not married, this does not affect her reported income when it comes time to apply for government benefits.
Their roommates include the father of my sister's first child, and his girlfriend. The two of them pay my sister $300 a month to live in the third bedroom of the apartment. My sister's two daughters share the second bedroom.
What this means is that my sister and her boyfriend have an after tax income of about $3500 a month. That equates to an income of over $50,000 a year for the couple. She and her boyfriend have annual passes to Universal Studios, and they go out for drinks and dinner 2-3 nights a week. Now I certainly don't have a problem with that. What I have a problem with is this:
She collects welfare, food stamps, reduced school lunch for the kids, and lives in a government subsidized apartment. In total, she also receives another $900 a month or so in government benefits. This means that her little family takes home about the same amount of money as a family that earns about $64,000 a year.
How is that disadvantaged? This amount of money puts them far above Orlando's median income of $35,732 a year, and above the US median income of $51,017.
When the US government calculates the poverty rate, they always exclude government benefits. The reason is simple: Most people who work for a living actually make far less money than America's new entrepreneurs. The most lucrative business is young women having children out of wedlock. Forget college, the average college graduate only makes $44,000 a year upon graduation, which takes four years. By the age of 20, a young woman can be living the high life with almost no effort. All she has to do is get pregnant a few times.
My sister is proof of that. This story is repeated millions of times all over this country, and it is the reason why we will be a third world nation before the middle of this century.