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One of the left's most effective political attacks on conservatives is on the issue of "compassion" for the poor. It's how they continue to convince a duped public into supporting big-government policies. To not do so would be cold-hearted after all.
Not an election goes by that you don't hear liberals bemoan conservatives wanting to cut off subsistence checks for the impoverished, take food off of kids lunch trays, or slash important food stamp programs that will make elderly people go hungry. It's where the idea of a "bleeding heart" liberal comes from...this shameless demagoguery of the issue of poverty.
This attack is especially effective on Christians. Christians understand part of their responsibility, given to them by Jesus, to be caring for the less fortunate. What they sometimes fail to remember is that Jesus' command was to them personally, not to civil government policy. Yet, liberals know exactly the right strings to play on the harp, talking about a need to "love thy neighbor" or "do for the least of these." But, of course, common sense Christians who step back and look at the results of government planned social welfare policies could quickly conclude that embracing another federal government program for the poor is about as far away from "loving" that poor neighbor as you could imagine. "Doing for the least of these" would actually be keeping the government planners as far away from them as possible.
Go and check out an Indian reservation and consider this is the epitome of a government-planned community. The government liberals "take care" of the poor Indians there. Would anyone want to put someone they care about on one of those reservations? Exactly.
Yet for some reason, conservatives never effectively articulate that point. Fearful of being seen as uncaring or insensitive, they cower to the liberal's increasing demands for more and more money to be spent on these many-times wasteful policies, that funnel money into large bureaucracies, growing the apparatus and power of government, but do very little to help anyone.
And on top of that, a new study has shed some very interesting light on just who is receiving all of this "love" from their neighbor taxpayers. Take a look:
For decades, the U.S. Census Bureau has reported that over 30 million Americans were living in "poverty," but the bureau's definition of poverty differs widely from that held by most Americans. In fact, other government surveys show that most of the persons whom the government defines as "in poverty" are not poor in any ordinary sense of the term. The overwhelming majority of the poor have air conditioning, cable TV, and a host of other modern amenities. They are well housed, have an adequate and reasonably steady supply of food, and have met their other basic needs, including medical care. Some poor Americans do experience significant hardships, including temporary food shortages or inadequate housing, but these individuals are a minority within the overall poverty population. Poverty remains an issue of serious social concern, but accurate information about that problem is essential in crafting wise public policy. Exaggeration and misinformation about poverty obscure the nature, extent, and causes of real material deprivation, thereby hampering the development of well-targeted, effective programs to reduce the problem.
This is not to say that dealing with poverty isn't an issue. It's not even to say that the way we deal with it can't be in some way connected to public policy. But it is saying that if we're going to deal with it, let's be honest about it...and that means having a serious conversation about who really is in need of assistance. That conversation will reveal to the American people once for all, that the point of the left's policies of social welfare isn't at all about helping people, but everything about creating dependence and controlling them.