Here's why it doesn't really pay to work any more: report
When is it better to earn $29,000 than to earn $69,000? When you’re a single mom living in Pennsylvania, it seems.
Describing what it feels to be the painful reality in America, Tyler Durden, the collective that writes to inflame at Zerohedge, concludes that "for increasingly more it is now more lucrative - in the form of actual disposable income - to sit, do nothing, and collect various welfare entitlements, than to work."
Here's another zinger: New York Times columnist Nicholas D. Kristof recently wrote about families in the Appalachian hill country pulling their kids out of literacy classes since, if they learn to read and write, the parents are likely to lose their monthly stipend for kids with intellectual disabilities.
Durden is actually basing his argument on that of Gary Alexander, Secretary of Public Welfare for Pennsylvania, who published a paper last summer called Welfare’s Failure and the Solution, a scathing indictment of his own state's economic safety net.
Among other things, Alexander's report included a chart showing the government benefits that accrue to single mothers, concluding that “the single mom is better off earning gross income of $29,000 with $57,327 in net income and benefits than to earn gross income of $69,000 with net income and benefits of $57,045.”
Worse, another chart shows that if the same single mom making $29,000 were to get a $1,000 raise, she would lose close to $7,000 in state benefits. So much for forging ahead.
"All this is to say that the current system is chaotic, woefully inefficient and obviously unsustainable. It incentivizes dependency and punishes ambition. It’s long past time for serious reform. But it will probably be a long time before we get it," declares one Pennsylvania newspaper columnist.
You could, as Senator Hugh Segal suggests here, simply scrap welfare altogether, of course. Or boost the current program substantially, which Ontario's incoming premier Kathleen Wynne seems to have in mind.
Do you see parallels to the U.S. situation in your own community? Are the discrepancies in Canada of the same order?
By Gordon Powers, MSN Money
Posted by: Mike | Jan 30, 2022 12:48:20 PM
Come to Oregon, no jobs, you can live like a king for free under a tree with the rest of the other homeless earning less than $29,000 a year.
Maybe the key for welfare to actually work the describe the way mentioned
above, is to be a woman, and be a single mother with lots of children from
different parents, that's pretty common around here too.
Child support from the different ex's.
Posted by: Mike | Jan 30, 2022 12:49:56 PM
See, I don't even know how to spell anymore... "Where's my welfare check!!!".
Posted by: eric | Jan 31, 2022 2:47:04 PM
Yes. It is very similar in Canada. Promoting more babies, how to get the most out of welfare, and avoiding work is just what our policies promote.
I really like the USpopular program of free cell phones for the homeless though. Hopefully your government is actually using it as a tool to track down illegals in the country and not as a tool to attract the have-not vote. Oops. Never mind. Your election results cleared that question up.
Posted by: Rolinda | Feb 1, 2022 12:30:56 AM
What a load of tripe!! First of all please tell me how many children said women in article has, please. And obviously the above writers here have no clue that childcare is in fact work - YES indeed - imagine that!! Must be hard to imagine that single 'moms' whether women or men who 'stay at home' to do childcare and related work actually do more than what most conceive would be equivalent to an 8 hour day out of the home - or in (if they are home-based and not doing childcare work)
And ya, nobody asked them to have kids and work like slaves to raise them (because there is less and less community sharing of childcare with everyone looking out for 'numero uno') in any kind of semblance of a balanced upbringing. So yes, it ends up being their choice to be caregivers who are undervalued, under-payed world-wide and generally considered to be slackin' whether they are on welfare or not!!
By the way in Canada you only get one third that amount stated above ($29.000) with just under another $4800 for child-benefits for one child in a year - so give me a break. And most do part-time jobs on the side which welfare deducts dollar for dollar of that self employed wage so it works out to about $3 to $4 an hour with all the long hours. And 30 years ago when I worked in daycare (not my own kids) it didn't pay any more than this. So ya most, whether single or paired-up do several jobs at once to raise kids these days.
Posted by: Rolinda | Feb 1, 2022 1:02:28 AM
Oh, if you are one of the lucky ones who actually gets child support it is deducted dollar for dollar too. So if you receive a reasonable amount of child support you probably wouldn't even qualify for welfare anyway. Do the Math!
Posted by: Troy Jollimore | Feb 1, 2022 11:46:43 AM
Errr...@Rolinda... The point of the article was that mother earning $29k a year, say, working as a secretary, was probably better off than if she studied and worked hard to become, say, a legal aide making $69k a year. So the choice is to keep the lower income with less responsibilities, stress and more time home with the kids, or to work like a dog, do MAJOR overtime with tons of stress... and end up making the EXACT same amount in the end. That person 'did it herself', but why bother when the government will pay you the money anyway? Where's any incentive to even try?
Here in Canada, I knew someone that was raised in a welfare family. They didn't have many marketable skills, though, so they deserved it as much as any. Eventually he landed himself a government job with the fair salary and excellent perks and benefits that entails. That's when Welfare Canada told him that, now that he was making so much money, they were going to take away the family home. Since he made nowhere NEAR enough to afford a house, there was only one choice to make. He quit his job, and it was back to the welfare lifestyle...
Like their new EI policy, they can't make a bunch of arbitrary rules and policies and tar everyone with the same stick. Individual situations need to be looked at, with plans and decisions made for that situation. But that's not how Government likes to run...
Posted by: josh | Feb 3, 2022 8:19:28 AM
I am sorry but when I see the welfare folks in my town with their three kids and designer clothing sitting in Tim Hortons drink coffee and eating take out almost everyday I have to wonder where my money is going. I know that not everyone abuses the system but I see enough of them everyday to know that something is wrong. Personally I think that you should not be allowed to be on the "dole" for more than a year tops, there are options that could be used to train these people so that they can contribute to society not leech off of it. Hell teach them a trade and guess what they can now work, as the proverb goes " give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime" it is more worthwhile to teach someone to do something, than to do something for them.
Posted by: worked for 40 yrs | Feb 3, 2022 9:27:04 AM
What ever happened to pride, or to self worth?
I would much rather work my tail off to support my family than to sit home and let the other working stiffs pay my way.........at the end of the day a working man at least feels some value in what he contributes to the world we all live in...
Posted by: alfred Watson | Feb 3, 2022 10:31:34 AM
The various governments have created a viable career choice in Canada as a "single welfare mother" which many girls, not willing to enter the workforce, have accepted.
The woman next door, for instance, has five kids and takes home $18.46 per hour based on a 40 hour week. A woman one half kilometer down the road has four kids and takes home $16.15 per hour. Additionally, they have subsidized housing at one quarter the going rate, free medical and dental, free kitchen appliances and free washers. The Gvt. won't buy dryers for them. They each have and have had various live in boyfriends. Sometimes, local "single welfare mothers" have more than one live in boyfriend.
There are 21 people living within a stones throw (almost) of my isolated home who are third and fourth generation welfare cases. THEY WILL NOT WORK!! Why should they.
I drive truck for farmers and get $14.00 per hour and work for tree farmers at a similar wage. IF the welfare people WOULD work for farmers there is a provision in the welfare Dept. that wages paid to them by farmers are NOT deducted from their welfare check. A few, a very few, take advantage of this provision. The majority of them choose to deal drugs and /or sell contraband cigarettes brought in from Ontario or Quebec.
The odd thing is that left wing organizations constantly criticize the New Brunswick government for having the lowest welfare rates in all of Canada.
I find it troublesome to have my tax dollars paid out to people who will not work and who laugh at those of us who do. I suppose they do, at least, have a sense of humor. Thats my two cents worth.
Posted by: Krystal | Feb 3, 2022 10:36:21 AM
As a hard working single mother of 2 kids, in Canada, I would have liked to have a little more support from my country or at least encouragement. I make 30 000 a year and barely make it, trust me, barely make it and I work damn hard... I guess I just fall into the gaps of the system as I am not on welfare but my ex decided his life would be easier if he quit his job to avoid paying child support and started to collect welfare, and apparently its his right to do so, So then I wonder about my rights as a mother and my children's right as Canadians
Posted by: annrose | Feb 3, 2022 10:48:17 AM
Yep, it's all true...the WORK ETHIC has gone out the window for a while now....I guess i thought moving to another country helped but alas IT DIDN'T....Some people just have the inside info on how to get without giving, and don't have a conscience about it
All i've got to say to that is for all of us who are working hard-KEEP ON KEEPING ON.
And for those who don't, well the gravy train will STOP unexpectedly one day, one way or another and that IS A FACT, of which I'm sure of, so enjoy it while it lasts.
Posted by: Cory | Feb 3, 2022 12:00:24 PM
Welfare should only be for the children...Make sure they're fed and have a roof and medicine needed...parents too lazy to work should be left on the side of the proverbial road to rot. Yes sometimes you'll need a little help in life...relocating to where the work is, retraining, major recessions, but for the most part the system is heavily abused, I mean these people are getting money from the government, they are getting paid right? Why not make them work a little for it? Pick litter a couple hours a week...weed community gardens etc...I am sure with creative thinking welfare could actually help cut certain other government budgets.
Posted by: Bob Maluga | Feb 3, 2022 12:08:19 PM
The author thinks that Tyler Durden is a real person!!
Posted by: igavemylife4thiscountry | Feb 3, 2022 3:02:56 PM
first i have to say, i grew up in the system, and watched as my mom struggled to raise 4 kids that our father walked out on, and the court ordered him to pay $1.00, yes one dollar of support (back in 1971). my mom tried to find work, but every time was cut off of wellfare before she could get on her feet. now i pay support myself, to an ex that wont let me see my own child (and yes, she walked out on me, and screwed around before she left). i pay support based on my income before i retired, which is much higher than my current retired income. why? because its far easier to do that then to go back to court. i lost my licence because i was labled a "dead beat dad" when i tried to lower my support to match my income. so now instead of finding work, i do my hobies instead because if i work, and combine that with my pension, i will end up having to pay my ex more $$ and i will have less $$ for myself. i gave this country a full career of service in our military, and ended up with PTSD and permanent physical impairment, and i watch as my ex collects support from me, collects ODSP from the Ont govt and works at the same time, and lives comon law. her house hold income is higher than mine, because she cheats. i was forced by govt pollicy to give her half my pension for the 8 yrs of marriage, and an addtional $20K because our govt systems are so easy for certain people to cheat. i go to the store to get groceries on the same days that the wellfare people go, because our $$ gets deposited the same days. if you were to be at the same store, on the same day and try to pick me out from the wellfare people...you couldn't. i get no respect or recognition for my decades of loyal service to our country, and worst of all, all the people that have never had the missfortune to have to rely on wellfare, treat me like an outcast simply because they can't tell the difference...so yes, all the govt systems are broken...so do something about it...i have no more fight left in me.
sincerly; one of our many misstreated veterans...J.A.
Posted by: Anon | Feb 3, 2022 3:17:44 PM
As someone who has worked in a social assistance program, believe me, I KNOW there are people who abuse the system. Try to do anything about it though and they threaten your life.
BUT, there are people who truly need the help. There are people who look for work and apply for work and never get anything. They have no other choice but to go on welfare. And there are some people who are ashamed of being on it and will express such shame.
There needs to be welfare reform. People shouldn't be on welfare for years on end until they get their pension. The government should reform it, BUT, that said, the government should keep its promise about job creation, too.
I like Cory's idea. Give them a petty job to do, build their work experience up, and make it easier to get them jobs in the real world. Stuff like that would help.
Posted by: Will | Feb 3, 2022 7:28:39 PM
Lets face the under lying FACTS. The govenment, we the Worker pay salaries for, don't care about us!.. We are the, suffering in silence Backbone of the Country. We are tired of the WASTE and squwandering of our hard earned money, Yet What can we do? We are too buisy earning money for the government that doles out Cash to the (Joke) Needy, trying to get by on what little we have left, and at the end of the day.. Can't be bothered to even vote because they are all the same. So now you say who does Vote? Well we all know the answer to that one,.. Who will stand to benifit from this runaway Gravey Train. Its time we the workers all got together
(And That Will Never Hapen) To elect someone to change the system, (And That Person Does Not Exist) Why? Because he knows the system and knows he would fail.
(The Workers) WILL NEVER MAKE A DIFFERENCE. One by One As we the Workers fall off the grid because we can no longer afford to be a worker supporting the non workers we wil either continue to suffer in silence of poverty or, (and these numbers are limited by Pride of self worth) Join the system and benifit from the gravey train.
For 40 years I have worked and paid Taxes, UI, CPP, and what ever else they could steel from me
and have never ONCE been a parasite! Now with a dissability I am faced with a decision,..
Become a statistic of either working to stay Poor or not work and be in the same boat.
I chose to work because I am proud, have self worth and dont believe the world owes me a living.
I believe in the occasional helping hand..... NOT FULL TIME HAND OUTS!!
And for those of you earning more than you are worth (and secretly know it) or who dont earn anything and can afford a computer and internet, want to comment on my spelling or grammar..
Get a real Job!
I am too buisy with my life.
Posted by: Tara | Feb 3, 2022 7:32:18 PM
One reason that welfare may seem attractive is because with heavy physical labour (long commutes, long hours with minimum wages) you get very little at the end of the day. While the people at the tops - CEO, governmenr consultants, MPP, Sentaors and councillors to name a few make the gravy from the dollars squeezed from the poor. Just check emails, travel on govt/company dime and retrain yourself for free. When the government stops wasting the poor man's hard earned money, takes nothing from those making 50K and less, then maybe we can reopen this discussion. No matter what work you do, it should earn you a decent living not subsidize it for those who already have much in life.
Posted by: Darlene Ullmann | Feb 3, 2022 7:50:07 PM
There is a man in my town. Probably a welfare case or disability. Not all there mentally.
Yet he has a shovel and is always clearing snow from the side walk in and around town.
summer months he is picking up garbage ect... I always stop to say hi and he is always happy for that. Hey... at least he is contributing with his volunteer work. I don't mind using my tax dollars to
help someone like him.
Posted by: Darlene Ullmann | Feb 3, 2022 8:03:02 PM
There is a man in my town. Probably welfare or disability case. Yet he has his own shovel and is
always clearing snow from the side walks in town. I always stop to say hi and he likes the short conversations. During the summer he can be seen picking up garbage ect... I don't mind my tax $$
going to someone like him who is at least trying to contribute.
On the flip side there are others who sit at Tim Hortons all day who are perfectly capable to work but won't. I have to go to work every day to support them. For me Tim Hortons is a luxury that I can't
afford to go to everyday.
Posted by: Ed Law | Feb 3, 2022 9:03:56 PM
I get much, much angrier about the high-finance leeches who nearly bankrupted the American economy with the sub-prime mortage scam, then received BONUSES for doing it!! All the single welfare mothers in the country can't come close! Goldman Sacs got a 9 billion dollar handout, hidden in the "fiscal cliff" bill...... now THATS what I call sponging off the Taxpayers, Mr Powers - knock off the insulting Neo-Con drivel
Posted by: pete | Feb 3, 2022 9:51:28 PM
Making more on welfare / benifits!! Just look at England - we have refined the living on benifits rather than work - I know as some of my family (by marriage) were actually better ofthan me a 50+ hours a week worker. I left England in part because the welfare system makes it more profitable NOT to work.
A study several years ago by a journalist found women having extra children so pay for cosmetic surgery & holidays! I know stay at home single mums can be considered working, but lets not kid ourselves - that is the follow on responsibility of having children. My wife works in child care & boy does she work!
There are some genuine claimants but there are a lot of jobs out there going begging - that claimants should be made to do, to support the money paid to them unless there are genuine reasons to physically stop them doing it!
A member of my family lives on benifits claiming he cant go out to work as mixing with people causes anxiety - doesnt stop him going to the pub for a drink though & his partner has given up work to care for him - on benifits. They smoke, have latest computer programmes, i-pads, drink & basically can do what I have to a) save money for & b) find the time to do it.
Stop the fre loading & make these people contribute!
Posted by: igavemylife4thiscountry | Feb 4, 2022 9:59:54 AM
i agree with several of the previous posts, however, my ex for example was able to fake her disability because its a disability that is not easily disproved. she was denied on her first attemp, so she hired a lawyer (at tax payers expense with legal aide) and that lawyer forgot about the hearing or something, but whatever reason, didn't show up. the judge felt sorry for my ex and ordered a new hearing date. before the hearing date came up, some how her file got misteriously approved, and once approved it can't be taken away. so now she rides the system for all she can. i know she isn't disabled, but that doesn't mean anything, it can't be taken away now that its approved. its easy to fake a disability, as she puts it, when you know how the system works...don't beleive that making these people work for the money they get unless there is a physical reason they can't, will make them do it. they will just do the same thing my ex did. she needed an income when she left me, and that was her answer. i worked damn hard during my military career, and experianced things that horify me in my sleep almost constantly. i have no formal training for any jobs in the civilian work world (unless someone needs a combat soldier). i live off my military pension that i paid into, so i don't live off the tax payers (and i do still pay tax on my pension), but people like my ex give the ones that lagitamately need it, a bad name. the reason there is no one in govt that can change things, is because the people that can change things are the ones that need to stop saying that, and run for govt, and make change!...nothing will ever change if the people that want change do nothing about it!
Posted by: SandraAM | Feb 7, 2022 1:52:15 AM
I had to go on welfare when my EI ran out. I hated doing so and cried at the office filling out the forms but had no money and no where to turn to. I applied for many many jobs but due to my age hardly got a look in. Finally after 2 years out of work I landed a part time job then secured a full time job 2 months after that. It was through knowing someone that was leaving a fantastic situation and her giving me a great reference that I got the full time work. My experience on welfare will stay with me and haunt me all the rest of my days. I prefer to work and love being a productive member of society once again. My depression has lifted and I feel worth something again. I believe there should be more controls in place so that abuse of the sytem is caught early and repeat offenders of the sytem should be barred from having second chances.