Blame the State and the Farm Lobby

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Will Sell for Food

by Greg Perry by Greg Perry

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A headline blazed across a recent issue of the local paper, "Food Stamp Recipients Found Selling Food Stamps for Cash."

My first reaction was, "Yes. Of course." I honestly did not understand why that warranted a headline. I had to read the article to understand this is a crime. I just figure even fat and poor welfare recipients can eat only so much and have leftover food stamp money every month. (I am not implying that everyone on welfare is fat and certainly many are not poor! But even those who are fat probably can’t eat all the food the government allows them.)

It turns out that food stamp recipients receive a spending allowance each month based on how large their families are, or at least how large they report their families to be. Plus, they don’t even get actual food stamps. A friend told me that food stamp credits are put on a debit or credit card and recharged monthly automatically. It’s like my credit card balance, it just keeps getting bigger, only I work hard to shrink it and food stamp recipients sleep and eat while theirs grow automatically.

I’ve since spoken with others and they seem to know all the above. This is all new to me. I don’t pay attention to the mechanics of the food stamp program. I do know that on the day he left the Senate for the last time, Republican Bob Dole said the food stamp program was one of his three proudest achievements while in office. (Brings to mind the recollection that Bonnie and Clyde were proud of several robberies they pulled at Texas banks.)

What Would Be Your Reaction?

If you saw these headlines, what would your reaction be: "Food Stamp Recipients Found Selling Food Stamps for Cash"?

After reacting "Of course," figuring that food stamp recipients cannot use all the government gives them, my next reaction was to ask myself who is buying the food stamps from them. No, can I be honest? My next reaction was asking myself, "Where I can buy these?"

I work to feed my family. Food stamp recipients don’t work to feed theirs. They obviously have too many food stamps. So if they will sell me food stamps for 50% of face value, I’d like to know where to stand in line with a handful of cash. We often scour eBay for gift cards that people are selling anywhere from 30% to 99% of face value. If you’re going to buy something at Sears anyway, then a $100 gift card that you pay $99 for is a free buck in your pocket, so why not? Many times we get far better deals on gift cards (for proof, I set up a link that shows you up-to-the-second gift card auctions for popular restaurants: http://www.bidmentor.com/restgc. Go ahead and splurge, part of your dinner’s basically on me!).

I’m used to buying gift cards at less than face value. Many people are used to selling them. I want to know what corner these food stamp guys hang out on. I’ll bring a fistful of cash.

I’ll Be Respectful to My Supplier

Back when they actually used food stamps, I recall being too smart for my pants when standing in line behind someone using them. I’d say something to the cashier like, "They didn’t even thank me for buying some of their groceries!"

The cashier would always look at me blankly having absolutely no idea what I was talking about.

I would never say something like that now. I’ve come to realize that I’m not actually angry at the people who receive the handouts. I am angry at the people who give them the food stamps!

If someone paid me more money not to work than to work, it would be idiotic of me not to take that deal. You can talk about pride all you want; I want to work for the highest bidder just as you do! Now if that work means I do what I want and I just don’t tell the government it is work, so much the better!

If you think food stamp recipients are wrong to receive them, I believe you need a change in your thinking also.

Where is the Real Crime Here?

Remember, I don’t blame those who accept food stamps. I blame those who give them.

A food stamp recipient is receiving stolen goods. That is absolutely true. The government steals money from you to give food stamps to them. But where is the real crime?

The real crime, or the greater crime I should say, is done by your government. The government not only steals your money, and gives some of it to food stamp recipients, but it keeps some as the middle man. Lawbreakers, I mean Lawmakers, such as Bob Dole, create laws like the food stamp program for their own good. They could not care less about the poor. More programs mean more money for the middle man (Lawmakers) and more votes for them too (from welfare recipients who want the program continued).

You read LewRockwell.com. How laws line the pockets of those who make them isn’t news to you. I do want you to start viewing this as a greater of two evils issue though. The greater of two evils, by far, is the one who gives welfare recipients their food stamps. I don’t respect the food stamp recipient who has the ability to work as most do. But I respect them far more than those who handout the handouts. They are the criminals.

The government says it wants to stop drug dealers and that will win our drug war. The government is the dealer of food stamps. Any politician who tells you he or she hopes fewer people have to depend on the food stamp program next year is lying. If they truly wanted to stop welfare, they would stop themselves, the dealers.

Greg Perry [send him mail] is the pistol-packing author of more than 75 books. He loves to combine his favorite hobby — guns — with his second favorite — online auctions — by teaching others how to buy and sell firearms, knives, and ammo in online auctions legally and easily! eBay may not respect your freedoms but the free market does. You can comfortably buy and sell weapons-related items in a simpler-than-eBay environment by getting his profit-boosting book, Guns Galore! How to Buy and Sell Guns, Knives, and Ammo in Online Auctions Easily Without eBay!

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