reply to post by beezzer
I love the nobility of 1) realizing that people really do work hard and still need help if they are going to get anything more than what they
currently have, which may be subsidized by the government and, 2) that, to quote someone not very popular on these threads, we need to create "ladders
of opportunity," and 3) that We the People can have a role in doing this, rather than waiting for the Federal and State governments to do this.
I particularly like this idea because there are people who simply cannot work, who are so disabled or medically incapacitated that they are completely
unable to help themselves. We have a growing population of these individuals (and I won't start ranting about why I think this is so) and imo they
are the ones who most need the social safety net. There would be no lack-of-funding issues for these folks if we could get more people out of
I don't know how many people here have had occasion to look into the gaping void that is Medicaid. While it provides absolutely necessary and 100%
needed services to those who are very disabled, the other population it serves is the very poor. It provides necessary, life-saving services to them
too, but they might be able to work for themselves if there was a way out of the Medicaid trap. The latter category, the very poor, is the one I want
The problem goes like this: 1) you find yourself facing a financial disaster, say from a major uninsured chronic health problem so, 2) to save your
life, or the life of a loved one, you take the plunge into Medicaid - you give up your home, all your assets including your car, and you stop working
the job that wouldn't pay for either your insurance or enough for you to purchase it on your own. 3) you are completely stuck.
IF you want to get out of poverty, but you have a medical condition that needs care in your family, there was no where to go - you couldn't do it.
That is why my family clung by our nails to the edge of that abyss, and I'm very grateful we could.
Something else not very popular on these boards is actually a new ladder out of the Medicaid poverty trap, at least for those who are there for
medical reasons. It is one of the genius aspects that people completely overlook - and I know a lot of folks won't like hearing it. Obamacare. Yep.
(cringing from the wrath of fellow ATSers). It is the first way to get out of the Medicaid trap that I have ever seen.
Now, you can 1) not be denied insurance so you don't have to stay on Medicaid to get help, 2) you can go back to work and start digging out of poverty
because your health insurance will start off being subsidized until you make enough money to pay for it yourself.
I've looked into the abyss. Now for the first time, people are being thrown a rope that isn't designed to hang themselves by, but can actually help
them pull themselves out. Now, the people wanting out of poverty who are not there because of a medical problem - I'm not sure what the final
solution is to that - but I think you are moving in a very good direction. The Obamacare solution is somewhat narrow in that the individual on
Medicaid has to be capable of working, but it is perfect for parents of a medically fragile child, or for someone who can return to work after
successful treatment. (edit to add that last statement...)
One more thing. We need a livable minimum wage, imo. I know that isn't very popular either. Perhaps there could be a tax incentive for people who
offer their employees a livable wage? In other words, it could balance out the extra Social Security and Medicaid employer-taxes through incentives,
thus making it no harder to give people a livable wage, vs. a minimum wage?? If we do that, then people wanting to transition from poverty will have
more motivation and an actual way out that keeps food on the table.
The thing is, beezer my friend, I'm not in any way adverse to "bootstrap pulling," hard work, self-reliance or personal responsibility for those who
are capable of it.
I really like your ideas for how to help people with other kinds of issues get out of their situation - there needs to be WAY more of this kind of
thinking and WAY less blaming, shaming and "Other-izing." (I think I just coined a term!)
edit on 10-11-2012 by AboveBoard because: edit to clarify