What are some cons regarding welfare?

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A problem no one has mentioned yet is that, while it is only 12% of the federal budget, that number increases during economic downturns when more people are unemployed, and especially underemployed, meaning they have a job but it does not earn enough to pay the bills.  They depend more on public assistance during recessions, and you have less workers paying taxes into the US Treasury that writes the checks for welfare.

There is no safety valve or temporary tax increase or sliding scale of benefits that is triggered when the economy is in recession, so it's a flaw in the system that makes us more economically vulnerable as a country.

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The problem that I see with welfare, or public aid, is that some people take advantage of it. It is meant to improve the financial well being of individuals who are in a state of financial crisis. Unfortunately, some people purposely keep themselves at a level of poverty so they do not lose this aid. It is definitely true that some people are in a current position that require the help of the government. 

Another problem that I have witnessed with a few people who use public aid is what they purchase in grocery stores. It should be used for necessities such as milk, fruits and vegetables, bread, eggs, meat, etc. I have seen people use Link cards for fillet mignon and this is not right.

If people stay on welfare because they are lazy and don't want to work it is not fair to the people who work two or three jobs just to keep themselves financially stable. It also isn't fair to the people who truly need the aid.

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Some people also argue that it is an unfair re-distribution of wealth, taking from the rich to satisfy the needs of the poor.  This is particularly objectionable to conservatives who believe that it also encourages that welfare cycle, as the previous poster pointed out.  Many people object to the idea of someone being able to exist on welfare without stringent regulations as to how long and how hard they have to work to find a job while receiving government aid.

Another objection is that the program, like any other huge government run program has instances of fraud and abuse both by recipients and by those who administer the program.  Fraud consists of all kinds of things but generally claiming dependents that don't exist, or collecting benefits for someone but not actually giving them to that person.  States have tried hard to discourage it but it still occurs despite rather serious prison terms for those convicted of fraud.

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To me, there are a few possible cons regarding welfare -- whether these are true or not is a matter of opinion.

  • The major con that people see (especially conservatives) is that welfare takes away the need for people to work.  If people can get by without working, the thinking goes, they will get lazy and not want to work.
  • This problem will be passed on to their kids and there will be a "cycle of dependency."
  • It costs a great deal of money to help all the people who need it.
  • It does not help them get out of poverty -- it just reinforces their poverty and keeps them from ever breaking out.
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