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Thu Feb 28, 2013, 09:28 PM

Maine Democrat submits bill to drug-test welfare recipients

Source: BDN

AUGUSTA, Maine — Lawmakers this session once again will debate whether recipients of state and local welfare benefits should be subject to drug testing. And this time, a Democrat is bringing forward the proposal, which is more likely to prove popular with Republicans.

Rep. Paulette Beaudoin, D-Biddeford, is sponsoring a measure that would allow the state to conduct random drug tests on Maine residents receiving benefits under the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program or health insurance through Medicaid. Under the measure, the state would cut off benefits to anyone who tests positive.

Beaudoin’s bill, LD 678, also would let municipalities drug-test recipients of aid through local General Assistance programs and cut off support for those who test positive.

Nine Republican lawmakers and one Democrat, Rep. Matthew Peterson of Rumford, have signed on as co-sponsors.

Beaudoin’s bill is one of a handful that lawmakers will consider this session dealing with drug use and eligibility for state assistance. Rep. Wayne Parry, R-Arundel — a co-sponsor of Beaudoin’s bill — also is proposing to require drug testing for food stamp recipients.

Read more: http://bangordailynews.com/2013/02/28/politics/state-house/maine-democrat-submits-bill-to-drug-test-welfare-recipients/



w.t.f.

73 replies, 15440 views

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Arrow 73 replies Author Time Post
Reply Maine Democrat submits bill to drug-test welfare recipients (Original post)
Maine-ah Feb 2013 OP
elleng Feb 2013 #1
bluedigger Feb 2013 #2
MADem Feb 2013 #22
southernyankeebelle Feb 2013 #29
FarPoint Mar 2013 #33
southernyankeebelle Mar 2013 #47
FarPoint Mar 2013 #48
southernyankeebelle Mar 2013 #50
IrishAyes Mar 2013 #67
southernyankeebelle Mar 2013 #71
sammy27932003 Mar 2013 #73
AnotherMcIntosh Feb 2013 #3
bluedigger Feb 2013 #5
AnotherMcIntosh Feb 2013 #10
Kelvin Mace Feb 2013 #14
bluedigger Feb 2013 #17
MADem Feb 2013 #23
bluedigger Feb 2013 #24
MADem Feb 2013 #25
bluedigger Feb 2013 #28
MADem Mar 2013 #72
IrishAyes Mar 2013 #68
Maine-ah Feb 2013 #32
MADem Mar 2013 #36
Mopar151 Mar 2013 #39
roxy1234 Mar 2013 #56
MotherPetrie Feb 2013 #4
LTR Feb 2013 #6
RT_Fanatic Feb 2013 #7
uppityperson Feb 2013 #8
markpkessinger Feb 2013 #12
Blue_Tires Mar 2013 #57
AnotherMcIntosh Mar 2013 #59
Arkansas Granny Feb 2013 #9
99th_Monkey Feb 2013 #11
Kelvin Mace Feb 2013 #15
AnotherMcIntosh Mar 2013 #60
Comrade Grumpy Feb 2013 #13
Comrade Grumpy Feb 2013 #16
littlewolf Feb 2013 #18
bluedigger Feb 2013 #31
onehandle Feb 2013 #19
frylock Feb 2013 #26
littlewolf Feb 2013 #20
timdog44 Feb 2013 #21
freshwest Mar 2013 #44
timdog44 Mar 2013 #45
freshwest Mar 2013 #61
timdog44 Mar 2013 #62
freshwest Mar 2013 #63
IrishAyes Mar 2013 #69
freshwest Mar 2013 #70
frylock Feb 2013 #27
nobodyspecial Feb 2013 #30
Ken Burch Mar 2013 #34
Skittles Mar 2013 #35
Proletariatprincess Mar 2013 #37
Fearless Mar 2013 #38
1983law Mar 2013 #40
PotatoChip Mar 2013 #53
1983law Mar 2013 #65
davidthegnome Mar 2013 #41
Selatius Mar 2013 #42
Bigredhunk Mar 2013 #43
RBInMaine Mar 2013 #46
PotatoChip Mar 2013 #54
RBInMaine Mar 2013 #64
Scuba Mar 2013 #49
RKP5637 Mar 2013 #51
Turbineguy Mar 2013 #52
mainer Mar 2013 #55
They_Live Mar 2013 #58
IrishAyes Mar 2013 #66

Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 09:30 PM

1. Ditto WTF!

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 09:32 PM

2. Fucking idiot.

“It’s not because I’m picking on (welfare recipients). I’m not,” she said. “They just need to be drug-tested, just like everybody else is.”


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Response to bluedigger (Reply #2)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 10:19 PM

22. Like everyone else is? Since when is ME testing everyone?

Maine has medical MJ, so I'm not sure where they're going w/this--it would be a simple thing to get a prescription.

Are they thinking they'll get scads of coke and heroin users?

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Response to bluedigger (Reply #2)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 10:49 PM

29. Well how about them? They are getting paid by the citizens. They are government employees.

 

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Response to southernyankeebelle (Reply #29)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 12:10 AM

33. Absolutely!

Test them randomly at any give time....they are in the group of, " like anyone/everyone else".

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Response to FarPoint (Reply #33)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 07:49 AM

47. Yep. However, it really is a waste of money. FL has done it and come to find out it

 

barely caught anyone.

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Response to southernyankeebelle (Reply #47)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 08:56 AM

48. Sorry....I didn't identify properly...my bad.

I want the politicians tested if they want to test welfare recipients.

The old say, " Whats good for the goose is good for the gander".

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Response to FarPoint (Reply #48)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 09:46 AM

50. It's ok. Another old saying "A Pig can't smell it's own hole". Republicans are pigs.

 

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Response to southernyankeebelle (Reply #50)

Sat Mar 2, 2013, 07:58 PM

67. Hey, now!

Don't you go insulting pigs around ME, girl. I bite!

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Response to IrishAyes (Reply #67)

Sat Mar 2, 2013, 09:19 PM

71. Actually I love pigs. In Germany pigs are good luck. I collect them. I just thought

 

you might like my little saying.

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Response to bluedigger (Reply #2)


Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 09:32 PM

3. Random drug testing should be imposed

 

upon those who propose such legislation whether they are {R's} or {D's} .

And random drug testing should be imposed upon those who knowingly support them.

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Response to AnotherMcIntosh (Reply #3)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 09:34 PM

5. Random hell!

It should be targeted and repeated daily.

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Response to bluedigger (Reply #5)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 09:47 PM

10. OK. I'm in with that.

 

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Response to bluedigger (Reply #5)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 10:00 PM

14. And test for alcohol!!!

 

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #14)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 10:05 PM

17. LOL!

A friend of mine posted on FB that Allen's Coffee Brandy was behind it all.

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Response to bluedigger (Reply #17)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 10:22 PM

23. Allen's makes a coffee brandy? I never knew!

They make a fine ginger brandy--very good stuff.

Good things come out of Somerville, MA!

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Response to MADem (Reply #23)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 10:27 PM

24. You have no idea...

It's the drug of choice in Maine and northern NH and VT.

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Response to bluedigger (Reply #24)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 10:39 PM

25. How could I have missed this? I need to get out more!

I spend a bit of time in NH, and a lot of time in northern Maine...!

I only rarely indulge in a brandy, but this is something I will seek out!

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Response to MADem (Reply #25)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 10:49 PM

28. Just stop at the State liquor store on 95 in NH.

And look for the massive display.

"Allen’s is not just the top-selling liquor in Maine, its various sizes occupy four of the top-10 sales rungs. Mainers drink more than a million bottles annually, and statewide sales in 2009 approached $13 million, about $10 per resident."

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/16/us/16brandy.html

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Response to bluedigger (Reply #28)

Sun Mar 3, 2013, 02:08 AM

72. I pass that store all the time when I go up to northern ME...

I don't go to bars, of the folks I know up there, one's in AA and the rest don't really imbibe much -- so I just never was 'clued in' to this beverage option~! I go by Somerville all the time too, but have no idea where the factory is!

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Response to MADem (Reply #25)

Sat Mar 2, 2013, 08:04 PM

68. Brandy

.... is nectar of the gods. You sit and swirl it in the glass, inhale gratefully, enjoy the aroma, anticipate the taste, and every once in awhile actually take a drop or two. Spend half an hour with a good glass of any decent brandy and you can forgive almost anyone anything.

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Response to MADem (Reply #23)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 11:12 PM

32. they like it mixed with 1/2 & 1/2 or milk.

It's been dubbed "the champagne O'Maine"

also known as "puss" by us bartenders -

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Response to Maine-ah (Reply #32)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 12:34 AM

36. Sort of like a downscale Baileys!

Wow--I really do learn something here every day!

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Response to Maine-ah (Reply #32)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 02:33 AM

39. Blender it with some cheap vanilla ice cream

Numnumnum....

The ever-popular blackberry brandy is known in some circles as "BungleBerry Juice" - I reccomend the Leroux "Polish" version.

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Response to AnotherMcIntosh (Reply #3)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 10:58 AM

56. With a stiff penalty to booth

 

Something like expulsion for any positive result will do with no change of appeal. How about them apples?

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 09:34 PM

4. Fuck her

 

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 09:38 PM

6. Or, as Republicans call it...

..."small government".

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 09:40 PM

7. And this is a DEMOCRAT?

Bull. Shit.

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 09:46 PM

8. Rec for wider exposure. "everybody else" is drug tested? WTF?

“It’s not because I’m picking on [welfare recipients]. I’m not,” she said. “They just need to be drug-tested, just like everybody else is.”

The state shouldn’t be awarding public funds to people who use their assistance to purchase illegal drugs, Beaudoin said.

“We give them public funds because they need it to survive. We give it for the children. We give it to them to have a better life, but not to be using it in that fashion,” Beaudoin said. “It’s to be used for food, for heat, for everything it has to be used for. Not for drugs.”


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Response to uppityperson (Reply #8)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 09:55 PM

12. They don't care because it was never about saving money . . .

. . . it has always been about making the social safety net as inaccessible as possible, and about punishing the poor.

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Response to markpkessinger (Reply #12)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 12:01 PM

57. Also about MAKING money for whoever owns the firm responsible for testing...

which was the case in Florida, naturally...

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Response to Blue_Tires (Reply #57)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 01:27 PM

59. "Also about MAKING money for whoever owns the firm ..." That seems to be right.

 

In Chicago, for example, traffic violators could choose to not have their tickets reported on their records by going to a privately owned traffic school. A Daley cousin was involved with owning the school.

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 09:46 PM

9. IIRC, this was tried in Florida and the cost of the testing

was much more than the savings from cutting benefits of those who tested positive.

ETA link http://www.miamiherald.com/2012/04/20/2758871/floridas-welfare-drug-tests-cost.html

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Response to Arkansas Granny (Reply #9)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 09:54 PM

11. Fuck the Deficits!! We will spare NO expense

 

to make sure the poor are regularly humiliated and
made to feel "less than".

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Response to Arkansas Granny (Reply #9)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 10:03 PM

15. Not only that

 

The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals declared the practice illegal:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/02/26/florida-welfare-drug-testing_n_2766479.html?1361907500

A federal appeals court upheld a lower court's injunction on Tuesday against Florida's effort to make welfare applicants pee in cups to prove they're not on drugs.

In a strongly-worded opinion, U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit affirmed a lower court's October 2011 finding that Florida failed to demonstrate a special need for drug testing poverty-stricken parents who apply for cash benefits from the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program.

"The evidence in this record does not suggest that the population of TANF recipients engages in illegal drug use or that they misappropriate government funds for drugs at the expense of their own and their children's basic subsistence," the three-judge panel wrote. "The State has presented no evidence that simply because an applicant for TANF benefits is having financial problems, he is also drug addicted or prone to fraudulent and neglectful behavior."

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #15)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 01:44 PM

60. The author of that Huffington Post article over-stated what the 11th Circuit did.

 

This can be verified from the language in the opinion: Lebron v. Secretary, Florida Department of Children and Families, Case No. 11-15258; http://www.ca11.uscourts.gov/opinions/ops/201115258.pdf

The 11th Circuit ruling is a limited one. The court did not go as far as the author indicated:
"Because we conclude that the State has failed to establish a substantial special need to support its mandatory suspicionless drug testing of TANF recipients, the district court did not abuse its discretion in granting the preliminary injunction enjoining the State from enforcing § 414.0652, Fla. Stat."

Judge Jordan explained in his concurring opinion:
"We are not making any definitive legal pronouncements about the ultimate constitutionality of Fla. Stat. § 414.0652. We are reviewing the grant of a preliminary injunction on an undeveloped record, and therefore are considering only the district court’s determination that Mr. Lebron is likely to succeed on the merits of his Fourth Amendment claim."

Contrary to the exaggerated claim of the Huffington Post author, the court did not issue "a strongly-worded opinion." Mr. Lebron may succeed. But he has not at this point. Judge Jordan also noted:
"In my view the doctrine of unconstitutional conditions is somewhat incoherent, and some of the cases decided under it are difficult to reconcile. See generally Kathleen M. Sullivan, Unconstitutional Conditions, 102 HARV. L. REV. 1413, 1416 (1989) (“As applied . . . the doctrine of unconstitutional conditions is riven with inconsistencies”)."

As has been said before (by me), one thing that we know about lawmakers and others including some judges who prefer to scapegoat poor people, instead of honoring the Constitution, is that they are a persistent bunch. They have not been stopped at this point. No one should mistakenly believe that they have.

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 09:55 PM

13. How to respond: "I'll take a drug test if you'll take an IQ test."

 

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 10:04 PM

16. Random drug testing violates the Fourth Amendment.

 

The federal courts consider a drug test a search under the Fourth. That means there needs to be a search warrant or probable cause. The federal courts have carved out narrow "special needs" exceptions for public safety (pilots, truck drivers) and children (testing of student athletes and those involved in extracurricular activities).

The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals this week upheld a preliminary injunction blocking Florida's welfare drug testing law, ruling that it doesn't meet the "special needs" exception because there is no evidence people seeking welfare are any more likely to use drugs than anyone else.

Your employer can drug test you because the Constitution only protects you from the state, not from your boss. If you don't want to be drug tested at work, that's a labor organizing issue and contract negotiation issue. Talk to your union about it. Or talk to your boss on your own. Good luck with the latter.

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Response to Comrade Grumpy (Reply #16)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 10:17 PM

18. what if your boss is the gov't? ie. the military.

I always wondered about that.

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Response to littlewolf (Reply #18)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 11:03 PM

31. The civilian Federal government doesn't really drug test.

Except for LEO and secure positions, it's too expensive to do without cause. Pretty sure that the military just tests random samples as well. I know I pissed hot with no repercussions when I enlisted in the '80's.

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 10:17 PM

19. Primary them. nt

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Response to onehandle (Reply #19)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 10:46 PM

26. we can't! you don't understand. try and be sensible for gawds sake!!1

if she weren't elected and proposing such draconian measures, a republican would get elected to propose such draconian measures! don't you GET it!

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 10:17 PM

20. but being back on subject:

How can anyone let alone a Democrat propose this?

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 10:18 PM

21. I would think

Rep. Paulette Beaudoin, D-Biddeford should take a random drug test also, as she is on the public dole herself.

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Response to timdog44 (Reply #21)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 04:39 AM

44. Great point! I suggest she fill her pee cup in public so we can tell if it's really hers, too.

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Response to freshwest (Reply #44)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 06:56 AM

45. Some lawmaker in Kansas

has suggested that lawmakers be tested, in response to testing publicly assisted people.

http://www.democraticunderground.com/1014411344

Not sure where it should stop. Should not have been started in the first place (drug testing) because it is being done without due cause.

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Response to timdog44 (Reply #45)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 03:47 PM

61. They're really arguing over disrespecting humans and treating them as animals.

Last edited Fri Mar 1, 2013, 05:02 PM - Edit history (1)

Welfare benefits are called charity by the right and a mercy to those in need. But the intent is to deny both humane instincts. GOP elected officials commonly term the poor and unemployed in terms that vilify them as mindless beasts.

Really, they want them to cease to exist. They are using language to facilitate suffering on those who can't help themselves. Drug addiction is a mental condition, that have been recognized as not being a crime, but an affliction. The 'choice' to use a drug with knowledge addiction will follow is not a rational act.

Once into the process, brain chemistry is altered and the person is no more in control of their craving than person with diabetes who needs insulin. The religious right claims that being 'born again' cures all of it. They trot out examples of those who get into religion and leave drugs. But the problem was mental to begin with, and they have substituted another one.

And they have their failures as well, and need constant reinforcement just as an alcoholic may go to AA meetings or a drug addict end up with a few psychiatric hospital stays to get back in balance. That is what people with the means to have insurance and handle other affairs can do and maintain their lives.

The GOP and the religious right demonize drug addicts who are poor, not those that have money like Rush. So they are playing a very cruel game that they use to inflame their voters against 'the other' whoever that will be decided it is. These are all human problems.

If it was not drugs they are accusing the poor of spending tax dollars on, it would be giving birth to children they cannot support. Then they want to deny them the means of contraception. Because their imaginations regard the poor as a group who should not exist, should not have the same things that are going on in their lives celebrated with diamond rings, elaborate weddings, honeymoons, baby showers and the like.

They deny they are eligible to become poor or that the poor are human beings. To them the poor are like ducks in a shooting gallery for their amusement. Just a few observations from watching these things unfold.

I made the unflattering suggestion for this women proposing this to do it in public, because people who live on public help are treated like a circus side show act. I don't approve of drug testing anyone unless it is parents who have been found to be abusing or neglecting their children or others who have committed violent offenses that they request mitigation in sentencing or waivers, due to drug addiction.

In such cases that is part of compliance to not re-offend. But the greater issue is this is a cowardly game being played on those least able to resist, and like trans-vaginal ultrasounds, meant to dehumanize and humiliate the targeted party. Saying that representatives should be drug tested is giving into the plantation or animal husbandry method of regulation of humans, instead of treating each other as deserving of respect.

Too long and maybe off course but I am fighting off a headache right now.

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Response to freshwest (Reply #61)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 04:31 PM

62. Sorry about the headache. Very aggravating.

But I don't think you are off course. So many of these things are so inter-related that it is hard to know how to end or whether to end fighting against the abuse. The studies I have seen actually show that the general population are bigger drug offenders (by todays laws) than are the poor. The poor really can't afford to do drugs, especially on a regular basis. And some times I don't fault if they do occasionally use, as it provides a temporary escape from their burdens.

Then there is the person in Florida who is governor whose only reason to do the drug testing is that he owns (actually he gave his wife the controlling interest) the company that does the testing and the places where the testing is done. So it is back to the almighty $ again. As an aside, I can't believe he was even allowed to run as governor after the Medicare fraud that the company he ran was convicted for and fined for.

There certainly are cases for drug testing, just as you mentioned. But you hear the one's, like Lindsey Lohan, who fail and nothing is ever done to them. $$$? again.

It may have been unflattering about her doing the testing in public, but would make it as humiliating as these poor people, being forced to be tested in order to receive their meager moneys.

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Response to timdog44 (Reply #62)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 05:03 PM

63. Thanks. And agree with you on all your points.

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Response to freshwest (Reply #61)

Sat Mar 2, 2013, 08:18 PM

69. Thank you

If more people could reason and communicate half so well even in good health, the world would be a far better place. I hope you're feeling better by now, too.

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Response to IrishAyes (Reply #69)

Sat Mar 2, 2013, 08:52 PM

70. Thank you. Today is a better day. I hope that people will reason this out with open minds.

There is so much suffering in our short lives here on Earth, why add to it?

Take care.

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 10:47 PM

27. that dime is getting thinner and thinner

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 10:56 PM

30. What these bills are all about is convincing people

that anyone needing assistance is just a drug-abusing loser, dehumanizing them so it's easier to pull the plug and let people starve on the street. After all, if they weren't abusing drugs (even if they aren't, which is more likely the case), they would not be in that situation. Not sure what they plan to do with all of those starving kids.

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 12:16 AM

34. Damn it, it's poverty that CAUSES the drug use, not the other way around.

 

Why do politicians always end up feeling they have the divine right to be sanctimonious and judgmental towards those who have nothing in life?

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 12:26 AM

35. what IS this garbage???

how about drug testing the bastards who wrecked our economy???

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 12:50 AM

37. Drug testing for ANYONE is a gross violation of Constitutional rights

We have the right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures. Random forced drug testing is a violation of that right. It is unreasonable to demand proof of what is inside one's body and unreasonable to demand that one make water or give blood to determine that. Immediate health and safety concerns may be exceptions in certain cercumstances, but it troubles me deeply that we have grown to accept this drug testing outrage for so long. There really has been very little resistance to this police state tactic and that is tragic.
It is all about Marijuana, of course. You all know that, don't you? Every thing else can be out of your system in hours. And yet we allow it to continue not only without resistance, but with support and judgementalism about who should be tested. Everyone, right?
I say no one. No one. No one. Feck the bosses and their corporate police state. Feck 'em all.

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 12:54 AM

38. Every study has shown that welfare recipients have lower incidences of drug use

Than the general population.

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Response to Fearless (Reply #38)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 03:02 AM

40. Linky?

 

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Response to 1983law (Reply #40)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 10:23 AM

53. Here you go.

- And if you want to see where HuffPo got their statistics for the article, it's at the link I provided.

In the few months that Florida implemented the testing before Florida U.S. District Judge Mary Scriven temporarily halted it, just 2 percent of Florida TANF applicants failed drug tests. Surveys show that more than 8 percent of the general population uses drugs.

In addition to noting the comparatively low rate of drug use among the targeted population, Scriven mocked the state's arguments that the testing regime would save money, since the state had to pay for the tests.
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/02/26/florida-welfare-drug-testing_n_2766479.html

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Response to PotatoChip (Reply #53)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 09:13 PM

65. Rock on

 

Sources to help arguments.

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 04:05 AM

41. Despicable

I remember when this was discussed in regards to Florida. I had a fairly short debate (short because they all eventually told me to shut up about it before they became very "angry" with my ignorance) with two of my sisters and my girlfriend at the time. Basically, they told me that anyone who is using their welfare money to buy drugs should absolutely lose it. They seemed to have this mental image of welfare families buying an xbox, a new television, paying for vacations with their "Huge" government checks. It's also definitely worth noting that none of the above had ever received federal assistance of any sort, so their ideas of how the system work are opinions based on... well, whatever they think the "terrible, lazy people" on welfare are doing.

Both sisters I argued with are democrats, and registered voters who actually vote. I can see them gleefully voting yes to test welfare recipients for drugs. They would argue that catching even just one or two people that abuse the system would make it worth it. Why? It would satisfy their anger, their disgust with people that they see as less than them, people they believe don't work as hard, don't try as hard, haven't earned the right to... well, even to survive, apparently.

To say that this makes me angry is an understatement. I don't know how otherwise intelligent people are somehow continuing to buy this nonsense that welfare recipients are all lazy, don't work, do lots of drugs... spend tax payer dollars primarily on booze, cigarettes, or leisure items. Numerous studies indicate that welfare recipients are few in number in comparison to the overall population. Numerous studies indicate that the vast, vast majority eventually no longer rely upon the system. Numerous studies indicate as well, that the vast majority of those who receive federal assistance also work and do not rely on the assistance for more than half of their income.

Realistically, I think a lot of those on the other side of this debate are aware of this. Somehow their anger, their fury, their resentment for those who receive any sort of assistance is just... toxic. Has the right framed this issue so well that intelligent people not only believe the lie, but are ready to grab their torches and pitchforks in support of it?

This Paulette Beaudoin is proposing legislation that is moronic, counter-productive and just bizarre. All of these people who are so angry should try to apply for TANF. Let them meet the social workers of this system they rant about. Let them face the humiliation, the sneers, the condescending attitudes and the outright hatred from people who think they are somehow superior. If they are still angry afterwards, I suspect it will be for a different reason.

Yes, let's drug test her - and any idiot that ever proposes this kind of legislation without having even a semi-adequate understanding of how the system works. Without having even a little knowledge of those who rely upon it.

Ugh.

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Response to davidthegnome (Reply #41)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 04:15 AM

42. I don't think the right reframed it better. The US always had a powerful puritanical streak.

Things like the New Deal only came about because of the sheer desperation and poverty inflicted upon the masses during the darkest years of the Great Depression. If there had been no Great Depression, there likely never would've been the New Deal, and few if any of these assistance programs would even exist today.

It's very easy to judge people, in a culture where judgment seems something to be demanded upon all others. Only when walking a mile in another's shoes do people finally get it that those who need help aren't all bad.

Americans "got it" when a full third of the nation was unemployed in the 1930s. I fear Americans have forgotten those bitter lessons, the bitter harvests, and the anguish that came from realizing that they had lost everything and were just another among the poor. Must people relearn the bitter lessons of the past?

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 04:25 AM

43. Well

Everybody who's for this and has receives any kind of government aid (farm subsidies, tax write-offs, grants, etc...) had better line up too. I live in Iowa. A large majority of the farmers here get subsidies (it's easy to Google). They'd all better head to their local testing center too. I'd like to see the Walton family tested, as they get tons of favorable tax breaks at our expense. This will be a long list of people to test, but I'm sure we'll be able to get to all of them.

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 07:13 AM

46. This is nonsense, and it is isn't gonna fly.

 

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Response to RBInMaine (Reply #46)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 10:42 AM

54. I hope a REAL Dem. primaries her, come the spring of 2014.

The last time I checked, Biddeford was a fairly liberal stronghold. I don't think this shaming-the-poor attempt will go over well down there.

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Response to PotatoChip (Reply #54)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 08:02 PM

64. She actually has been pretty progressive on most things, but this is just weird.

 

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 09:41 AM

49. So the "Democrat" representing Ed Muskie's hometown is a co-sponsor? WTF indeed.

 

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 09:53 AM

51. Let's drug test the politicians first! They, are the ones that can cause real harm to millions of

people. And it's clear some are on drugs and/or have some serious emotional issues.

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 10:04 AM

52. Goodness!

what's next? Testing Legislators?

It's the thin end of the wedge, the camel's nose under the tent, a slippery slope, and a few other cliches.

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 10:47 AM

55. What a damn waste of money, too.

Drug testing ain't cheap. I'm shocked that a Democrat is proposing this.

ACLU of Maine will surely have something to say about this.

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Fri Mar 1, 2013, 12:05 PM

58. Those who test positive

will be cut off from any funding, kicked in the teeth at the top of a staircase, and then finally shot in the head when they reach the bottom of the stairs.

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Response to Maine-ah (Original post)

Sat Mar 2, 2013, 07:55 PM

66. Sickening

Do they think they can shame poor people off critical public assistance? Shame on THEM!

Poor people share what little they have far more than any imaginary generous Mr. Moneybags - they're the most giving in the world because they know what poverty feels like. Now their supposed betters want to further crush their spirit by the strong insinuation that they're likely to be drug abusers on top of the sin of poverty? It doesn't surprise me coming from a Repug, but any Democrat involved should be kicked to the curb. The only possible eventual bit of good I can imagine coming from this would be if it finally woke up the poor white GOP sheeple to the true nature of their masters who scorn them so and drive a few over to our side.

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