Scott Walker wants to be your president. When I use the word ‘your’ I am not including those living in the poverty level. He wants nothing to do with that group. Scott Walker will be energetic if elected protecting white Americans who are classified as upper middle class or higher. The Governor of Wisconsin spends more time waging a war against the impoverished than considering plans to care for all of his state’s residents.
Wisconsin is already one of a dozen states which require drug testing of individuals who apply for welfare assistance. He wants to take the next step; he is asking the state legislature to require those applying for unemployment to be tested as well.
Walker is a Republican; the party responsible for a fast growing income disparity in our nation. He does know how to waste taxpayer money. Wisconsin, as other states who require drug testing, has failed to see Walker’s expected results. The process is costly, and the results reveal that less than 0.25 percent of applicants fail the test.
Who else does Walker want to eliminate; seniors. He has cut Wisconsin’s programs for the elderly by 40 percent. Let’s explore his TEA Party economics and imagine what he would propose if he was your president. Walker would increase Americans living in the poverty level by millions; he would likely insert a real ‘death clause’ into the Affordable Care Act insuring seniors would die more quickly and save tax dollars paid by these same elderly men and women throughout their lives.
Our government claims concern for Americans living in poverty; but lip service doesn’t accomplish results. Recent conclusions from studies conducted over two decades reveal that mismanagement of assistance programs fail our poorest residents. Those whose income is 50 percent or more below the poverty income standard received less aid than those making 200 percent above that level. In other words the money intended for families making under $12,000 a year was awarded to families making just under $48,000 each year.
The time period for this study was primarily during the Clinton Administration when Congress was controlled by Republicans. Legislation was poorly written and failed to aid those who needed the assistance most.
More proof of a nation-killing income inequality is confirmed by a study which corroborated the fact that neighborhoods living in poverty have doubled and even tripled in the last 40 years. The number of individuals living in high-poverty urban neighborhoods has grown by more than 100 percent to over four million. The number of neighborhoods considered subsisting in the highest level of poverty has grown from 1,100 to 3,100, nearly tripling the number 40 years ago. The report includes the fact that these neighborhoods quickly fall into a state of disrepair, frequently lose city services, and reveal increased rates of crime. The fact that 75 percent of residents in these neighborhood are African-Americans or Hispanic confirms the attitude of politicians such as Scott Walker; ‘put them somewhere and forget about them.’
Income levels in the United States reveal immense disparity. In some cities efforts are underway to refurbish impoverished and even abandoned areas. However, when they are rebuilt, the housing constructed in the blighted areas are not affordable for lower income or impoverished families. This rebuilding has therefore added to the number of homeless families in our urban areas.
With Republicans in control of Congress nothing is likely to change in a positive manner. The opposite could become a reality and homeless and poverty levels will continue to rise.
Commentary by James Turnage