It’s staggering when you think how far we have fallen in such a short time. New numbers released are revealing that almost half of the country is on the government dole…while the other half is funding it. Ever wonder what socialism looks like? Take a look around. We’ve created entire generations of people who no longer understand personal responsibility, who can’t make decisions and live by the consequences thereof (the good and the bad), and they wouldn’t know what to do if they had a need that the government could meet.
Nearly half, 48.5%, of the population lived in a household that received some type of government benefit in the first quarter of 2010, according to Census data. Those numbers have risen since the middle of the recession when 44.4% lived households receiving benefits in the third quarter of 2008.
The share of people relying on government benefits has reached a historic high, in large part from the deep recession and meager recovery, but also because of the expansion of government programs over the years. (See a timeline on the history of government benefits programs here.)
Means-tested programs, designed to help the needy, accounted for the largest share of recipients last year. Some 34.2% of Americans lived in a household that received benefits such as food stamps, subsidized housing, cash welfare or Medicaid (the federal-state health care program for the poor).
Another 14.5% lived in homes where someone was on Medicare (the health care program for the elderly). Nearly 16% lived in households receiving Social Security.
High unemployment and increased reliance on government programs has also shrunk the nation’s share of taxpayers. Some 46.4% of households will pay no federal income tax this year, according to the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center. That’s up from 39.9% in 2007, the year the recession began.
Most of those households will still be hit by payroll taxes. Just 18.1% of households pay neither payroll nor federal income taxes and they are predominantly the nation’s elderly and poorest families.
The tandem rise in government-benefits recipients and fall in taxpayers has been cause for alarm among some policymakers and presidential hopefuls.
I’ve read some protest over the article because it states that Social Security and Medicare is a benefit and it shouldn’t be counted as one since “we pay into it.” However, you have to take into consideration that those who receive Social Security get far more out of it than they ever paid into it- namely because life expectancy and health care costs have increased. When you receive more than what you pay in- it becomes a “benefit.”
Welcome to your hoax and change…er, hope and change!