With federal debt and spending relegated to congressional backwaters until our fiscal crisis returns next year, needy special interests are back in the spotlight. By now you would think that even liberals would be tired of hearing Democrats ramble on about the needy. With spending back on the table almost everyone who isn’t wealthy qualifies as needy: seniors, illegal immigrants, the middle class, the sub-middle class, college students, teachers, children, and Americans who can’t get health insurance because their president’s website, predictably, doesn’t work.
Are Democrats doing anything to help their needy, or are they just handing us the same pitiful stories month after month and year after year knowing that things will never change because keeping as many Americans as possible in need is the point?
Democrats don’t do needy special interests any favors.
One can imagine the smirks just out of camera range as presidential speechwriters watched their boss deliver this zinger yesterday:
We should be able to work together on a responsible budget that invests in the things that we need to grow our economy and create jobs even while we maintain fiscal discipline. We should be able to pass a farm bill that helps rural communities grow and protects vulnerable Americans in hard times.¹
That’s a plan, Mr. President. We assume that fiscal discipline means scraping up more tax revenue and a responsible budget means spending a lot of money in the name of rescuing both Americans and non-Americans from need.
The big bone of contention in the farm bill is food stamps, something we don’t tend to think of when we think of farming. Domestic Policy Council Director Cecilia Munoz includes as many as possible under the massive umbrella of need created by this boondoggle:
Third, we should pass a farm bill – one that America’s farmers and ranchers can depend on, one that protects vulnerable children and adults in times of need, and one that gives rural communities opportunities to grow and the longer-term certainty they deserve.²
The tab for food stamps has expanded massively since Barack Obama took office and the gap between the tens of billions Democrats want to spend and what Republicans believe is prudent is staggering. Democrats still won’t acknowledge that assistance for the needy for its own sake just means more assistance.
Dump the needy. Liberals need new poster children.
The needy have had a pretty good run in their various guises, poor and middle class alike, but nothing kills votes like special interest poster children everyone has given up on. Obama’s advisers are clever, though, and our president might still be able to toss his party a few bones before his reign comes to an end. Failing clean energy companies would be a good bet. When all else fails we still have 11 million illegal immigrants who, for the first time in their lives, stand a chance of legally getting their hands on our tax dollars.
If Democrats insist on showing they want to improve the lives of Americans they know they won’t help, they might consider using the older workers who lost their jobs on Barack Obama’s watch and may never work again. The president has slammed the door shut on opportunity for those who spent their lives paying taxes to fund spending behemoths like the farm bill (see: Jobless Older Workers are Worthless in the Obama Economy), so it seems fair a little should trickle down to those too old to work and too young to retire. We know their situation will never improve as long as Barack Obama is in the White House and even after that it is probably too late, but making a difference that lasts was never the point, was it?