Nearly Half of U.S. Lives in Household Receiving Government Benefit

Sara Murray, Wall Street Journal, October 5, 2011

Families were more dependent on government programs than ever last year.

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.

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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.

{snip} 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.

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  • Anonymous

    I am beginning to believe that the global economic crises are indeed engineered by the mega-banks and the richest few, who want to destroy the world economy, wipe out the dollar and other currencies, then swoop in as “saviors,” with the new one world coin.

    Then they want to squeeze the entire world like a grape.

    They’ll only succeed in eventually getting themselves pole-axed, of course. The world will not bow, especially not whites.

    Don’t confuse this post with one of pessimism.

    I just think it’s as plausible an explanation of our woes as any:

    Flood the rich nations with dissident peasants. Ransack the treasuries. Devalue all assets. Take away most of the good jobs. Make sure the third world invaders keep the rest. Strangle the smart, the ambitious white middle class.

    Only one problem.

    The super rich are not gods. If they try to follow through, they will reap their own whirlwind. (Who could be so greedy, so stupid, as to think they can really rule the whole world)?

    Madness and folly, but greed sure does make fools of men.

  • Anonymous

    I would love to know how many sloths I have personally carried on my back over the years? Got my working papers at age 14 in 1980 and I was very proud to get my first real job (not babysitting!) in a supermarket. So it was then I began to pay the taxes, federal, state, city. Imagine – for 32 years I’ve looked at my gross and my net and that large difference has been robbed right out of my pocket. I always went to private school (white privilege, you know…) so I can’t say that my local taxes were much use to me other than paying for public sanitation and other municipal necessities. Imagine how much DEAD WEIGHT many of us have carried over the years for things we would never personally subscribe to? And of course subsidizing those who are not in any way genetic kin to us and who are actually breeding us out of our homelands? It’s like – who is really the idiot here????

    The winners carrying the losers? Who is running this operation? If anything they are a burden. Imagine what we could have accomplished without having these sloths hanging off of us and weighing us down?

    Imagine how much the fruits of our own labor are used against us. And in the long run, against our children. There is no way any white person can continue to delude themselves, or stick their heads in the sand. It’s well past time we woke up, and spoke up. And even more importantly, woke up our men!

  • Jim

    Time for a flat tax, no exemptions.

  • Justin

    For better or worse, the “Baby Boomers” ARE getting older and people today can be expected to live longer because of the advances and progress which medicine and science have made during the past several decades or so. As for the increasing number of people receiving Medicare, Medicaid and food stamps…it’s really just a matter of how outrageously high the cost of living has become–especially for those with a fixed retirement pension. The elderly population today is far greater than it was 30 or 40 years ago and the cost of medical care rises every day (so to speak).

  • Juggernaut

    Nearly half, 48.5%, of the population lived in a household that received some type of government benefit in the first quarter of 2010

    Things are looking up.

    Next stop: Greece. After that, look out Zimbabwe!

  • Bon, From the Land of Babble

    Nearly half, 48.5%, of the population lives in a household that receives some type of government benefit

    Looks like it’s about the same percentage that pay no federal taxes,

    Some 46.4% of households will pay no federal income tax this year

    Expect these number to increase as the government punishes honesty and hard work and rewards the lazy and slothful like the ones now marching on Wall St. demanding a guaranteed income while blaming others for their own failures.

    The number of people who vote for a living will soon outnumber the number of people who work for a living.

    The US Federal Government for the past 80 years has been based on the premise: FROM EACH ACCORDING TO HIS ABILITY, TO EACH ACCORDING TO HIS NEED.

    Obama calls it “spreading the wealth around!”

    When very popular idiots like Elizabeth Warren receive loud applause for telling us that if you drive your car on a public road, or attended a public school, or waited at a crosswalk until a government-owned electric sign told you to WALK, you have received a government benefit, and now owe everything you accomplish in life to the government. Or fools like Nancy Pelosi garner massive media attention for claiming that unemployment checks are what drive the economy:

    Pelosi: Unemployment Benefits Biggest Stimulus for Economy

    we are a step away from American Citizens calling each other “Comrade.”

    It’s a good system and worked just fine in the USSR.

    (didn’t it??).

    Bon

  • rjp

    I don’t think it’s fair to lump the 14.5% on Medicare and 16% on Social Security.

    Two reasons:

    1. They paid into both not by choice and on the premise they would receive.

    2. If a retired person receiving either lived in a regular household (say with their children) that household has now been deemed on par with a welfare household

  • Anonymous

    We need to fix trade to end the massive offshoring and outsourcing of American jobs, innovation, and capital investment to foreign hosts and foreign workers. We need to stop importing foreign workers on visa to displace American labor.

    We need to implement E-Verify federally nationwide and revoke automatic citizenship.

    We need to roll back the red tape and reduce tort on small businesses. We need to protect American innovation like we once did during the Cold War years.

    We need to federally decertify public employee unions.

    We need to reduce government spending.

    Will we do these things so we can enjoy long lasting jobful sustainable recovery while paying the national debt in full?

  • Anonymous

    In a perfect world only the following would receive aid from our government.

    The elderly

    veterans

    handicapped

    If a “poor” family needs food, they should only be allowed the staples (meats, eggs, milk, veggies, breads and pasta). No free for all EBT card!

    It should only last for a max of 3 years, then a complete review of their case, including if you “gotz spinners on yo ride”.

  • A. Smith

    Problem is, we all receive taxpayer-funded government benefits, and we don’t want to give them up: public education, police protection, national defense, and so on. And then, many of us receive tax breaks, too (such as the mortgage interest deduction), which work just like a government benefit. Both the very rich and the very poor in this country get plenty of government benefits.

    As another poster said, we need a flat tax–no special privileges, everyone pays. And we need to shrink government, so that even public education is gone (it’s been so politically yanked-around that it’s not worth anything anymore anyway). Government should stick to the function Adam Smith advocated: providing public order.

  • Anonymous

    What will happen to America when the scales tip all the way to the “entitlement” side?

    In 5 years we will be like Greece.

    In 10 years we will be Zimbabwe West.

    In 20 years we are done as a nation.