There is a vast variety of programs and as stated above, most of the means-tested programs are now run by the states but receive sums of money from the federal government. These programs also have many sub-parts to them to offer help in various ways. For example, Food Stamps is a service that provides income solely for the purpose of purchasing food. The program is for those families that meet the minimum income requirement and cannot feasibly be expected to buy food on their income. The program, however, provides a wide variety of services to those families that might not meet the income requirement solely for food stamps but need help. For example, School Lunch Program, WIC Women, Infant and Children Food Program, School Breakfast, Child Care Food Program, Nutrition Program for the Elderly, Nutrition Service Incentives, Summer Program, Commodity Supplemental Food Program, Temporary Emergency Food Program, Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program and Special Milk Program.
Other important means-tested services are income, medical, housing, education, job training, energy and utilities, child care and child development and community development. Each service is multi-faceted and intended to assist those Americans living in poverty.
Generally speaking, the ones delivered to the poor are done so directly, and thus, in a very visible manner. By contrast, the ones in which the beneficiary is wealthy tend to be done indirectly and often the recipient isn’t aware they’re receiving a government benefit. The problem with welfare is that it’s riddled with double-standards. Most people receive some sort of government benefit, and the ones going to people who are poor are delivered in visible ways. This asymmetrical visibility means it’s politically easy to demagogue social spending that goes to the poor (whom it is socially OK to stigmatize) while spending that goes to the wealthy and powerful gets a pass.
Should the U.S. government abolish all means-tested welfare programs and just give the money to the poor?
No. The government would not be able to determine if someone is poor or not without digging into the person’s “means” – that is: income, children, marital status, debts, living conditions, education, employment prospects. The welfare programs seek to ensure that the support provided to the needy is provided in the category of need. Someone with severe handicaps vs an elder poor vs a single woman with 5 kids, have very different needs. The government in it’s “nanny state” or benevolent role (however you characterize it) seeks to ensure that the taxpayer’s funds are being spent properly..so that judgement is NOT left to the individual (who may or may not be able to manage money). Most people think of welfare as the lazy, but able-bodied person, but many are very old or uneducated or mentally or physically disabled, and located in very poor places with little prospect of improvement in their surroundings/local economy and development.
The Cold War is the period of tension between the United States and the Soviet Union from the late 1940’s to the late 1980’s. Since the end of the Cold War the threat of the Soviet Union has decreased however in a major turn the threat of terrorism has only grown. As citizens from every country are now on high alert and vulnerable to terrorism, many countries have
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Security Issues Post-Cold War:
I’m sure most of my classmates were not even born when the wall in Berlin dividing a country came crashing down on November 9, 1989. I remember it well, but it took me years to really understand what this significant piece of history mean. The world stopped to watch the news and be a part of the history, it was momentous. But at the time I could not fathom that this meant anything to the United States. After all, this was in some foreign country and it was a freeing of their citizens to choose their religion, attend school or visit neighboring countries and even family they may not have seen for years. But the fact of the matter is that this event left America vulnerable.
The end of the Cold War resulted in less suppression of extremist religious groups and ethnic tensions as well millions of migrants searching the globe in hope of a better life or because they fear persecution where they live. For America, this meant more competition for already scarce jobs, further strain on public programs for healthcare, education and housing. It also created racial tensions because many fear the unknown and importantly feel work is being taken away from foreigners. Unlike in 1989, these feelings of threat or the conception of being treated unfairly go viral on the internet and social media creating tensions across national borders. Prior to the end of the cold war, it took longer for people to communicate and travel into these forbidden areas was slow or not allowed. Once the borders opened, it left every side somewhat naive to how the others truly felt and the potential security issues that would arise. Today, the post-Cold War world has only become more intense and mass migration, international crime and international terrorism has only grown.