6/14/2012

Welfare Phones Cost Taxpayers $2.1 Billion Per Year

Posted by Brian

Food Stamps is one of those "third rails" of politics.  "Compassionate" politicians constantly remind us that making any kind of cuts to this sacred cow is verboten, and those who support cuts or reductions in the rate of increase are heartless scumbags who want to starve children and little old ladies.

Well, one of the programs associated with food stamps is a program that provides cell phones, free of charge, to food stamp recipients.  And it doesn't stop there. It is available for those on WIC, Head Start, Medicaid, and others.  All paid for by the taxpayer.

The Food Stamp program, like just about every other do-good government program, has been corrupted by money in the form of subsidies to banks and corporations, many of which have little to nothing to do with providing nutritional meals to people struggling to make ends meet.  How else to explain potato chips, sodas, and other junk foods being on the approved list of EBT purchases.  For that matter, some of these programs (WIC) have income requirements in which persons well above the poverty line qualify for the benefits.

Now we have a program supposedly associated with nutrition, which has absolutely nothing to do with nutrition, costing the taxpayers $2.1 BILLION a year. In addition, many of the recipients of these "free" cell phones are NOT eligible under the guidelines to receive them.  Many of these people have more than one of these free phones, and others have used this program to replace a cell phone that they already had, but had to pay for!



 So, we have a sham of a program associated with "nutrition" that is rife with fraud, has incompetent oversight, costs the taxpayers a fortune, and which apparently performs no service other than to give free stuff to people.  Remember this the next time one of these condescending hacks steps before a microphone to tell you how heartless and cruel it is to make cuts to this, or any number of other "essential" programs.


SPENDING OFF THE HOOK: FREE PHONES COSTING TAXPAYERS $2.1 BILLION PER YEAR

by JOHN SEXTON

You're probably familiar with the food stamp program which grew from $35 billion in 2008 to $75 billion last year. But did you know that getting food stamps also makes you eligible for a free government cell phone?

A program called Lifeline provides free phones and free monthly minutes to anyone on food stamps, WIC, Medicaid, Head Start, and several other government programs. And just like food stamps, Lifeline (aka "phone stamps") has been growing by leaps and bounds since 2008, at significant cost to taxpayers.
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