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Sun Apr 29, 2012, 10:13 AM

Of course there's slackers trying to game the system

Yes, there are lazy people who don't want to work. Some of them will try to game government assistance programs and get benefits they don't deserve. Some corporations are defrauding these same services.

While we should certainly beef up anti-fraud efforts against both individuals and corporations who are cheating the system, something will still fall through the cracks.


What do YOU think we should do about it?
6 votes, 0 passes | Time left: Unlimited
It's OK if some slackers get benefits they don't deserve. We need to ensure the deserving get what they need.
3 (50%)
It's never OK for slackers to get benefits they don't deserve, even if we have to deny folks who are genuinely needy.
0 (0%)
Other (please comment)
3 (50%)
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Disclaimer: This is an Internet poll

13 replies, 1399 views

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Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 13 replies Author Time Post
Reply Of course there's slackers trying to game the system (Original post)
Scuba Apr 2012 OP
dkf Apr 2012 #1
hedgehog Apr 2012 #2
get the red out Apr 2012 #3
slackmaster Apr 2012 #4
Ian David Apr 2012 #5
rucky Apr 2012 #6
exboyfil Apr 2012 #7
Zorra Apr 2012 #8
HappyMe Apr 2012 #9
LeftishBrit Apr 2012 #10
mzteris Apr 2012 #11
surrealAmerican Apr 2012 #12
saras Apr 2012 #13

Response to Scuba (Original post)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 10:15 AM

1. How can you differentiate "slackers" from the "needy"?

 

Wouldn't slackers be needy?

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 10:17 AM

2. I'd like to see a comparison of losses from fraud

by recipients vs. fraud by suppliers.

I had a cousin who ended up on welfare when his unemployment ran out. He picked up some money painting houses - odd jobs that meant he was perpetrating fraud. I have to believe that any one of a hundred suppliers out there defrauding Medicare did a lot more damage to the system.

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 10:18 AM

3. Corporations

The differences in scope between individuals that might find a way to illegally obtain some benefit and a corporation are immense. I say the bigger fish need to be caught first for maximum impact.

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 10:19 AM

4. The poll choices look like a false dilemma to me

 

I say make sure that everyone who is in need gets what they need, jave severe penalties for fraud, and actually enforce the law so that the risk of a cheater getting caught is high.

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 10:20 AM

5. Even those who are gaming the system are still stimulating the economy.

And we cannot let huge numbers go without help just to punish the handful of undeserving who are gaming the system.

We need to focus our efforts to catch those who are both gaming the system AND engaging in more serious scams. For example, water dumping, selling food stamps, or being gainfully employed and receiving unemployment.

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 10:24 AM

6. Take measures to detect and enforce against fraud.

Same thing retailers, cops, accountants, insurance companies, etc. do. And what Wall Street should do. Even banks do it.

Yet nobody ever suggests we should get rid of these institutions entirely.

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Response to rucky (Reply #6)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 10:37 AM

7. Mechanisms in place might help

1. For Medicaid (and to a lesser extent Medicare fraud) have every person qualify for a $100 payment every year at the end of the year less a $5 copay for each drugs or services (you can adjust the amount). When folks go to get their $100 and it is not their because some doctor has been ripping off the system they may be more inclined to shut it down.

2. Pay bounties for detecting fraud (Medicaid, Social Security Disability, SNAP, etc) but make individual pay some fee upfront (say $50) that will not be refunded if no evidence of fraud is detected.

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 10:39 AM

8. We spend zillions on our taxpayer funded World Police Force so that they

can protect private transnational economic interests at little cost to these private interests.

(Defense) Budget breakdown for 2012

Total Spending: $1.030$1.415 trillion

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Military_budget_of_the_United_States#Budget_for_2012


And I should lose sleep over a few people gaming the system for pennies?

Ever heard the old adage "Pennywise, and pound foolish?"

That describes the mentality of those overly concerned about welfare fraud.

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 10:49 AM

9. Slackers to me, are people who thumb their nose

at a job offer with the 'I'm too good for that' attitude.

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 10:51 AM

10. I prefer the first option but...

(1) I don't think it's literally 'OK' if 'slackers' get benefits they don't deserve. Benefit fraud on any large scale means less available for those who do need it, and one should try to prevent it. However, it is not OK to act as though anyone on benefits is by definition a fraudster, or to cut benefits all round in order to supposedly reduce fraud.

(2) Benefit fraud is not identical with 'slacking'. The largest category of benefit fraud is in fact people who continue to claim the 'dole' when they do have some sort of job. I think that it's important to recognize this fact, because equating benefit fraud with 'slacking' has contributed in the UK to a very nasty obsession with people on disability benefit in particular, whipping up anti-disability attitudes.

(3) Tax fraud is much commoner, and takes much more money out of the system, than benefit fraud.

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 10:53 AM

11. What's that old saying?

Better that one (10,20, 4, 9. . .) guilty man go free than one innocent man suffer?

Isnt our judicial system based on this premise? (not that it seems to be 100 per cent foolproof plan, but I digress)

It's been a staple of modern man since earliest times.

Seems only the tyrants of history believed otherwise.

Edit typing with one finger and one eye right now...

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 11:27 AM

12. Financially, there is a point at which ...

... it costs more to detect fraud than you will save from eliminating it. There is simply no reason to go past that.

Morally, it is far more important to make sure you are not denying assistance to those who really need it than it is to make sure that those who don't can't cheat.

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Response to Scuba (Original post)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 11:30 AM

13. I just don't buy the model of "slackers" in the first place.

 

Work is for slaves. If you can accomplish something through organizing the environment, thinking it through, or any other method that produces more results for less work, you are a smarter, more valuable person.

The MOST effective contributors look like they're slacking because what they do works with little effort, and they have plenty of time to help others or just goof off.

Work addicts are the worst. They'll have you sweeping the floor three times in a row while the company goes under, because sweeping the floor is in your job description and dealing with an economic crisis isn't.

When all the rich people quit dodging taxes, and voluntarily step up to pay MORE, then I'll think about working harder than is necessary to create a good life for those around me. But at this point, there are a LOT of activities that are more productive than work towards that end.

What should we do? Least harm. Get over the moralistic shit, and go after fraud when, and only when, it becomes a more significant economic problem than any others you have. And NEVER assume it's "fraud" or "laziness" until proved in a court of law.

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