How about letting members of the Fortune 500 run America's welfare programs? [Reader Post]


Imagine what you could do with three quarters of a trillion dollars. You might buy a new house, maybe a new car and maybe even take a trip to Hawaii or Australia.

Seriously, what can $750 billion accomplish? Well, that all depends on who’s spending the money.

According to the Congressional Research Service the federal government spent $745 billion in 2011 on welfare payments.

That means that government took 20% of every dollar it extracted from citizen’s wallets (or borrowed on their behalf) and gave it to somebody else. Not in exchange for part of a system they have paid into like Social Security or Medicare, or earned such as veteran’s benefits, but simply because they, the recipients were deemed poor. What’s more, virtually every element of the welfare state has gone up by double digits over the last 3 years: Healthcare up 37%, cash aid up 12%, education (college) assistance up 57%, energy assistance up 67% and who knows how much “Obama phones” have grown. Those numbers are simply staggering. That welfare spending, when combined with the $300 billion states have to pay for federal programs, brings total welfare spending to $1.03 trillion, fully 7.5% of the American economy.

To put that spending in perspective, in 2011 the 500 companies that make up the Fortune 500 list earned a total of $825 billion in profit on revenues of $11.2 trillion for a profit margin of about 7%. (1/3 of that revenue came from outside the US)

It’s interesting to see what, in the right hands, upwards of ¾ of a trillion dollars can do.

Of course in the private sector it’s profits that drive the activity. Entrepreneurs often start companies because they’d like to make a profit doing what they love. Investors invest in companies because they believe the potential for profit outweighs the risk of losing their money. At its core profits are what drive a prosperous society.

So what did those 500 companies do to earn their $825 billion? They directly employed 17 million Americans and indirectly employed tens of millions more both in the United States and around the world. What’s more, they touched the lives of virtually every person in the country in one way or another: Utilities – PG&E and Georgia Power; cable TV – Cablevision and DirectTV; Food – Wal-Mart and McDonalds; Healthcare – HCA and Pfizer; Information – Google and TimeWarner; Entertainment – Disney and CBS; Insurance – State Farm and Aetna; Communication – Apple & ATT; Transportation – Ford and American Airlines.

The US revenue from these 500 companies represents about 50% of our GDP and improved the lives of virtually every man, woman and child in the country in the form of a paycheck or cheaper products or more efficient services or more effective treatments. They are the top performers in an economic system powered by innovation and experimentation and has generated unprecedented prosperity. All driven by $800 billion in profit…

Now contrast that with the government spending $745 billion. From food stamps to cell phones to housing assistance to healthcare, government spending on welfare programs have been growing for decades and have taken off like a rocket ship under the Obama administration. Surely with that much money spent the results must be phenomenal. With $20 trillion spent over the last

half decade surely there must be no more poverty anywhere and no more hungry children.

Of course that’s not quite how things have worked out. Today there are 47 million Americans on food stamps, record levels of poverty and the most downtrodden communities are plagued by violence, broken homes, failed schools and double digit unemployment. Not so surprisingly the food stamp program is so well run that earlier this year Congress felt the need to prohibit EBT cards from being in strip clubs and stories of EBT cards being used for everything from liquor, to cigarettes, to porn to casinos are legion.

At the end of the day however, welfare is not supposed to be a profit driven endeavor. (Of course there’s nothing in the Constitution that gives the federal government the power to run a welfare program in the first place, but why quibble about technicalities…) The government created welfare programs were supposed to support those in difficult circumstances until they were able to get back on their feet. It, the welfare state, has been an abject failure for everyone involved, from the people whose money is taken to fund it to the recipients themselves, sometimes generations of them. This failure has been catastrophic, both in terms of the lives lived in misery or those not lived at all, as well as in terms of the loss of human capital in the pursuit of prosperity.

Is it not time to consider a model where the people who bring us everything from iPads to Velcro to overnight delivery to Big Macs are given a shot at solving the problem that government is simply incapable of solving? American private enterprise has driven the improvement of the human condition farther and faster than any economic system in the history of mankind. Is it not time to abandon the failed policies of the welfare state and allow the profit motive to attempt to solve a problem that apparently warrants the spending of a trillion dollars a year of taxpayer’s money on?

If not business per se, then private charities and churches. In his excellent new book “Who’s the Fairest of Them All? – The truth about opportunity, taxes and wealth in America” Stephen Moore discusses a study by Arthur Brooks that shows that private charitable dollars are far more effective in helping the poor than public programs. Moore states

“That is in part because private charity often requires some change in the behavior of the person receiving the aid, such as getting off drugs, working for the aid or helping others. Public charity almost never attaches these conditions”.

And that explains why government welfare programs have failed. They don’t require anything from anybody. Private enterprise succeeds because businesses require adapting to circumstances and markets to achieve the goals. Citizens should demand that we harness the innovative power of the private sector to attack a problem that government has been making worse for 50 years. While the country as a whole would benefit from the lower taxes, the bigger benefit would be achieved by those freed from the oppressive yoke of government dependency who would be able to share in the prosperity that has so long escaped them. Now that’s redistribution worth considering.

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“and who knows how much “Obamaphones” have grown?”

In 2008, the program cost the American taxpayer $772 billion. In 2011, that cost had increased to $1.6 billion, doubling the cost of the program in 2008. But even worse is the hypocracy by this administration as it hammers on Mitt Romney about Chinese investments (which Obama has in his Illinois retirement plan).

The federal government, through its Lifeline program, supplies free cell phones to the poor, paid for by taxes imposed on other phones users (those who pay for their phone service). The government provides the priviledged “poor” person with a TracPhone and so many minutes, replaceing the old program where a landline was provided that allowed for only local calls and did not give the recipient long distance services. So while responsible Americans are being taxed to pay for those TracFones, it is a program that our federal government has decided to outsource.

Carlos Slim, a Mexican national and the richest man in the world with an estimated wealth of $70 BILLION, has controlling interest in TracFone. For each TracFone Mr. Slim provides to the U.S. government for the Lifeline program, he earns a tony $10.00, not to mention the addition money he earns when those “poor” add additional minutes to their cell phone service. In case anyone wants to point out that these phones only go to the “poor”, the federal government provided service to 3.8 million people in the U.S. last year. Multiply that $10/per phone by 3.8 million and you can see that the federal government is outsourcing no small amount of our tax dollars.

Lifeline was a program designed to provide poor people with a way to call 911 services. But if that is the design of the program, there is no need to provide any talk minutes attached to the free phone. All cell phones, every one of them, have the ability to call 911, even if there is no service available to that phone. Have an old analog phone laying around in your desk drawer from 10 years ago that has no service attached to it? No problem; simply charge the phone and it has 911 capacity.

The Lifeline program is supported by Universal Service Taxes on everyone’s phone bill, for both landlines and cell service. On my own phone bill we have one landline and two cell phones, and the Universal Services Tax, both state and federal, equal about $6.00 a month. Multiply that ($72./year) by the number of landlines and cell phones in the entire U.S.

But it gets worse: Frederick Pollak is CEO of TracFone, and hosted an Obama fund raiser in his Miami home in June for a fee of just $40,000 a plate. Mr. Pollak has donated at least $156,000 to Democratic candidates and committes this cycle alone, and at least $50,000 to the Obama campaign. Pollak’s wife, Abigail, is a Obama campaign bundler who has raised more than $632,000 for Mr. Obama, this cycle alone and has personally contributed more than $200,000 to Democrat candidates and Democrat committees since 2008.

So just remember as Obama bashes Mitt Romney for what Chinese investments Romney may have, under the Obama guidance, your telephone taxes are going to make the richest man in the world richer, and he’s not even a American. If Mr. Obama wants to address outsoucing of goods and services, perhaps he should start with the federal departments he is responsible for as the nation’s chief executive.

This is a terrible idea for the very reason you articulated: the profit motive. Big business would have no motive to move people off of welfare: their incentive would the opposite, to grow the welfare rolls and therefore increase the revenue they can demand from the government to service these “clients”. A very analogous situation is happening, to disastrous affect, with the for-profit contracting out to private companies to run prisons:

a growing number of American prisons are now contracted out as for-profit businesses to for-profit companies. The companies are paid by the state, and their profit depends on spending as little as possible on the prisoners and the prisons. It’s hard to imagine any greater disconnect between public good and private profit: the interest of private prisons lies not in the obvious social good of having the minimum necessary number of inmates but in having as many as possible, housed as cheaply as possible. No more chilling document exists in recent American life than the 2005 annual report of the biggest of these firms, the Corrections Corporation of America. Here the company (which spends millions lobbying legislators) is obliged to caution its investors about the risk that somehow, somewhere, someone might turn off the spigot of convicted men:

Our growth is generally dependent upon our ability to obtain new contracts to develop and manage new correctional and detention facilities. . . . The demand for our facilities and services could be adversely affected by the relaxation of enforcement efforts, leniency in conviction and sentencing practices or through the decriminalization of certain activities that are currently proscribed by our criminal laws. For instance, any changes with respect to drugs and controlled substances or illegal immigration could affect the number of persons arrested, convicted, and sentenced, thereby potentially reducing demand for correctional facilities to house them.

Brecht could hardly have imagined such a document: a capitalist enterprise that feeds on the misery of man trying as hard as it can to be sure that nothing is done to decrease that misery.

Read more

From the same article above, in regards to the unprecedented levels of Americans behind bars: “Over all, there are now more people under “correctional supervision” in America—more than six million—than were in the Gulag Archipelago under Stalin at its height.” The fact that private industry is now advocating for laws that maximize prison populations (and tax dollars spent on prisons) should chill any American. I certainly wouldn’t advocate for a similar experiment to be played out with our nations poor as the guinea pigs, with the predictable consequences being worse services and an all out K-Street push to expand the market and increase the revenue stream flowing from our tax dollars.


If there is no profit for companies in having millions of able bodied people on welfare that they provide services for, why would they support it? What the Obama administration has done is make it very easy for people to get government services at no cost to them. Just look at the “free” lunch program now installed in every school in the nation. A single parent with an AGI of $32,000/yr can put their kids on the free lunch program. Free lunch was provided in every city in the U.S. for the last two summers, to anyone 18 and under. This is a double handout as the food stamp program was designed to feed poor children, yet we allow the parents to use their EBT cards for many other things, besides food.

Also, since all government programs provided through private industry is supposed to be cost negotiated via the bid process (although we know they are often handed out to big political bundlers like the Pollaks), companies still make more profit from individual consumers.

The answer is to cease welfare as we know it. There is nothing in our Constitution that says the government can steal, through the IRS, from one citizen to give that citizen’s earning to someone else.

As to the prison system, there is one sure way to stay out of it; don’t commit a crime. But unfortunately, since Obama has taken office, our violent crime rate is rapidly increasing. Frankly, I think we should return to chain gangs.

The ”profit motive” for welfare could be tied to getting people OFF it, Tom.
Remember Michelle Obama’s job at the Chicago hospital?
For over $375,000 a year she made sure sick poor people entering her ER got in a cab or on a bus instead of being admitted to the hospital.
That way she saved her hospital from having to squander its own money taking care of them!
Now, to be fair, that idea won’t work IF all private welfare programs were as selfish as Michelle’s.
But to demand addicts go into programs, alcoholics take that awful medicine that prevents their drinking, parents (even single ones) learn money management and so on would have a slow-but-steady effect on people leaving poverty.
Can you imagine if ”free condoms” came only after one spent a few hours taking care of end-stage AIDS patients?
Can you say, scared straight?

“Repeal that [welfare] law, and you will soon see a change in their manners. [I]ndustry will increase, and with it plenty among the lower people; their circumstances will mend, and more will be done for their happiness by inuring them to provide for themselves, than could be done by dividing all your estates among them.” –Benjamin Franklin (1753)

It makes sense and is entirely plausible however, we’re talking about government giving up control (oxymoron). They don’t like that.

According to the Congressional Research Service the federal government spent $745 billion in 2011 on welfare payments.

So says the Republican side of the Senate Budget Committee. Click on the link that goes with the article and read further. You will quickly come to this sentence:

The data excludes spending on Social Security, Medicare, means-tested health care for veterans without service-connected disabilities, and the means-tested veterans pension program.

Got that? If you’re eligible for Social Security, Medicare, or means-tested veterans’ health care benefits, you’re now classified by budget-cutting Republicans as a welfare case. If you’re hoping to become eligible for Social Security or Medicare a few years down the road, you aspire to become a welfare case. If your mother or father or grandparents worked their entire lives and then became eligible for Social Security or Medicare, according to Republicans on the Senate Budget Committee, they’re welfare cases.

Then comes the diversion: Suddenly they’re talking about food stamps and cell phones and housing assistance, suggesting that it’s not really you or your family they mean. It’s those other people they’re talking about. The moochers, bums, and freeloaders. The 47 percent. The second-handers.

I certainly hope mainstream American voters are paying very close attention and reading between the lines. I certainly hope they’ve noticed that what Romney and Ryan are saying now bears little resemblance to the objectives that House and Senate republicans have passionately pursued for the past 2 years.

The flood of money behind them is coming from the same people it has been coming from all along. Do you really think they’ve changed their objectives?

@Greg: The word exclude means that those things are NOT included in the total… The word you’re thinking about, include, is not there. Close though.


Use English much, Greg?

You come here and run your worthless mouth about the EVIL Republicans who simply think that seniors on Social Security are no better than the welfare hoes and you don’t even bother to really read what you are using as an example and it takes Vince to point it out to you.

You would be funny if you weren’t so pathetic.

@Vince, #8:

Good Lord. How obvious was that? I stand corrected.

I will take this as a sign that I need to refrain from posting for a while, and possibly have my bifocal prescription checked.


Better yet; get a brain scan for yours is certainly not functioning properly.

@retire05, #10:

Vince was very polite in pointing my error out, wasn’t he? That was appreciated.

I think I will refrain from political discussion for a few days. It’s time to do so when I’ve ceased to read carefully, and begun speaking too hastily.

“You come here and run your worthless mouth about the EVIL Republicans who simply think that seniors on Social Security are no better than the welfare hoes and you don’t even bother to really read what you are using as an example and it takes Vince to point it out to you. ”

C’mon, guys, can the insults and abuse, okay? Greg was mature enough to admit that he was wrong, no justification for that kind of language.
If people that we disagree with don’t want to post here, we’ll end up talking to ourselves.
I, for one, want to hear from the people with whom I disagree. That’s how I learn.
And Greg does seem to be a pretty good person, overall.


Sorry, but after all the things Greg has said about Republicans, Romney, yada, yada, I, for one, am in no mood to cut his sorry liberal a$$ any slack at all. If you want to play the leftie game of “Why can’t we just all get along?” when the bus that hit them is so obvious even they can’t ignore the wheels sitting on their chests, feel free to do so. I have been hearing from the left for long enough, and if I want to learn about socialism, I’m not going to have a dialog with Greg, I’ll just read Marx.

Greg has nothing to offer. Nothing.


Not being rude, but how long have you been reading his posts? It’s been a few years here.
At first I thought he was just a moonbat. After a while it became clear honest debate was not why he was here. He was apparently using the Rules for Radicals playbook. When a post was about a dem doing something wrong beyond a shadow of a doubt, he would launch an off tangent attack in an attempt to derail the thread and avoid discussing what the dem did. He doesn’t do it as much since we pointed out we knew what he was doing, be still tries fairly often. Greg has also made some rather ugly anti-religious remarks only slightly disguised with humor (yet another alinsky tactic- ridicule). He made it a point to lie several times about Romney paying his taxes, but offered no proof, and has often challenged us to debunk his unsupported claims rather than him prove what he says in the first place. Lastly, he has a 100% record of defending obama and the dems. By that I mean he agrees and defends them every time without fail. Not even rich or Larry is that bad.
Sorry, but greg gets what he has earned.

Well, if you hate him so much, and find his way of speaking so reprehensible, why do you want to act just like him?
One of the many reasons that I am a conservative – only one small reason among many – is the way that liberals treat those with whom they disagree, compared to the way conservatives respond to dissent.
You two are acting like average liberals.
Correct, I haven’t been here for too long. But I haven’t read much from Greg that has been too objectionable lately. If you are holding his behavior of years ago against him today, then you are indulging in the kind of behavior that you excoriate the liberals for.
We are all supposed to be better than that.

Lately? The anti-religious slurs were in the last month. Same with the Romney lies and other attempted thread jacking. I will tell you again since you didn’t seem to get it the first time—he isn’t here to debate honestly. Neither is lib1, rich, or tom.
And spare us the holier than thou lectures. I don’t care what you approve of , or meeting any standards YOU think should be met.

Well, you know, it really doesn’t matter.
Since you seem anxious to attack anyone who disagrees with you.
And accuse them of ugly things.
My “Holier than thou” attitude is merely a recognition of the old, outdated rules of civil discourse.
I believe in treating others the way that I would have them treat me.
You seem to believe in treating others one level worse than they treat you.
You didn’t have to tell me that you don’t care what I approve of. Your responses to Greg (and me) are proof of that.
I, personally, don’t care how others treat me. I will remain civil to all. To respond to insult and anger with insult and anger is to let the rude people control me.

yes GREG is always finding something negative on the CONSERVATIVE BLOG HERE,
and that is annoying the CONSERVATIVES, he argue and cover his side, even when he is being told
the truth, he will find a way to find the wrong to be ,right,
but he like us, and come back for more,
some men like to be beaten I guess, GREG is one of them.


You remind me of the kid who gets beat up by a school yard bully ever day but thinks he can talk the bully out of doing it again. I don’t suggest you apply that attitude to someone trying to mug you for your wallet. They don’t care that you would treat them the way you want to be treated and sometimes the only way to stop a bully from smashing your face is to smash his head with a brick.

Now, remind me again about those “old, outdated rules of civil discourse.”
Do you mean like how Andrew Jackson damn near beat a man to death with his cane, or how the discourse was so civil during the Adams/Jefferson campaigns for POTUS, or perhaps how the left has been smacking conservatives across the face for a 100 years but we are supposed to just continue taking that because, after all, there is that thing called the “high ground?”

Maybe you have been brainwashed to not fight back, but I darn sure haven’t been and as long as Greg continues his lies about conservatives, Republicans and Republican candidates, I am going to smack him with a brick every chance I get.

Oh jeez, ego on display there PC. Don’t break your arm patting yourself on the back.
Maybe someday you’ll wake up and see the light. Folks like greg, rich, and tom are not people you can reason with and aren’t simply people who disagree with you. While you are naive, you seem like a nice guy.
Let me give you some backround. I used to be somewhat like you. While I disagreed with some people, I didn’t think less of them. As the years went by, I ran into “liberal” after liberal who got very nasty when the subject of politics came up and I dared to disagree with them. Over time I learned what made such people tick, the psychology behind their views/behaviors. It’s coming from a dark, but all too human place. Narcissism and pathological denial of reality. They need to feel good about themselves and liberalism gives that to them.
Something else I learned is that politics is pure war to “liberals”. They go for the throat 100% of the time. No trick is too dirty. No shot too low. Winning is all that matters. Add to that the belief that their cause is next to godly, and they have the justification for their actions no matter how heinous.
Sure there are moderate liberals and I actually get along with them. It’s the ones further to the left like greg, liberal1, rich, and tom that I have no tolerance for. Unfortunately the moderates are not in charge of the dem party. The radicals are. I am of Cuban heritage. My relatives have stated the actions of obama rae how it started in Cuba. While I am not saying we are about to go the way of Cuba, I do listen to those that have lived thru such events.
So if being civil makes you feel good about yourself, go for it, but don’t tell me I need to do the same.

it’s hard to pinpoint GREG when you have not read all his comments,
because he has a way to make another look bad or wrong without cussing,
but with the right vocabulary that make him look gentleman polite and good manners,
the kind if he had a voice here literally talking would never raise it, but his way of denying another comment if it touch his side, is more dirty than what ever answer he could receive as blunt as it can be,
and, if you let him get away with his rhetoric it carry the lie in the cyber space and become irreversible,
so we must correct him and other who try to paint the CONSERVATIVES AS WHAT THEY ARE NOT,
tha’s how dangerous they are, and must be stop from the start of their sentences,
just like you cut a cancer at the first eruption of the pimple.

edit; oh boy here is another one JUST shown on FOX HANNITY

Bees, greg pretends to be a sane and rational individual just to suck in people like Petercat. Without the history we have of his posts, they fall for it.
He is an alinskyite without a doubt.

Hard Right
yes , that’s why they catch other in their game, they prey on the one who don’t know them,
we must admit it took a while for some of us to figure GREG,

Hello, Bees.
I don’t remember ever seeing you lose your temper to the point of being rude, insulting or nasty to others.
You seem to be a pretty nice person.

“You remind me of the kid who gets beat up by a school yard bully ever day but thinks he can talk the bully out of doing it again. I don’t suggest you apply that attitude to someone trying to mug you for your wallet. They don’t care that you would treat them the way you want to be treated and sometimes the only way to stop a bully from smashing your face is to smash his head with a brick.”

Oh, boy, are you just full of assumptions about me. Please continue with your fantasies.
What have I said that would indicate to any rational person that I will not defend myself from a physical attack?

I’ve known many very tough people, and the vast majority of them were courteous to others . Other people would sometimes think that the fact that they didn’t act “macho”, whatever that is, meant that they were wimps. The truly tough people never bothered to prove them wrong until pushed too far. I guess when you know that you are capable, you don’t have to wear it in public. Words on a screen are not enough to make me act like someone I don’t want to be.
An actual attack on on some person or entity that I am sworn to protect is an entirely different matter.

Say what you will about Andrew Jackson or other examples of the day, most people did then and do today live quiet lives, taking care of their responsibilities, and protecting others from harm without a lot of posturing and publicity. That is to say, acting like adults. Even Jackson’s associates described him as a petulant child. Not a very good example of a responsible adult.

“So if being civil makes you feel good about yourself, go for it, but don’t tell me I need to do the same. ”
I wasn’t”telling you that you need to do anything. I was just suggesting that you might not wish to act like someone that you despise.


Bees, my point was that it is possible to recognize people like Greg for who and what they are without sinking to their level in response.
You can make the same point with courtesy and respect that anyone else can make with name calling and abusive language, and be more effective.
That is, after, one of the ways that Romney is winning.
Doesn’t mean that you’re a wimp.
Quite the opposite, it means that you are strong enough to avoid the easy path of temptation to temper tantrum.

you speak wisdom, I did notice it from the first comment you gave, I agree that sometimes
we let go to reply too strongly the ones who try to push their view in our throat,
this cyber space is a medium perfect to let the steam out, yes, no chance to be injure and you feel good to have chase away the opponent, without a physical punch that make your knuckles sensitive
for a good while, but some deserve a less polite answer if they attack the veracity of the other to make him look ignorant, that we see here with the other side come in and using the CONSERVATIVES TOLERANCE AS A PUNCHING BAG, IF THEY ARE POLITE,
I suppose this is part of the game, we are doing sometimes,
you bring a reminder, it’s good to take it, so to keep the self restraint in balance,

Right as always, Bees.
A soft answer may not turn away wrath, but it certainly drives your opponent insane.
Leads them to make accusations of cowardice and wimpiness, for example.
They do not understand that a desire to avoid violence is not the same as being incapable of it when necessary. The toughest people I’ve known were the most determined to avoid trouble, for example.
I’ve never seen a case where it was necessary in an online discussion. Or where abusive and rude language advanced a conversation.
Some people come here to stir up trouble and antagonize us. If we let them do so, they will keep coming back, because our angry response is their reward.
If we don’t let them antagonize us, they will get bored and leave for a more “rewarding” website.
And we can continue with our discussion, uninterrupted.
I despise people who act like that, why on earth would I want to act just like them in response?
Thanks for the kind words, Bees.

Some of our ”liberal” posters remind me of this lady, Sharmeka Moffitt, who claimed three men in white hoods wrote KKK and set her on fire.
Turns out all the forensic evidence point to her using her own toothpaste to write KKK and her own fingerprints are on the lighter and lighter fluid recovered from the scene.
She did it all herself.
Too bad she burned herself so bad.
She’s now in a coma in critical condition suffering from extensive burns.
Our ”liberal” posters do it all to themselves, too.

yes you bring good point, Ihave been here a while back, and have been attack
I suppose my accent is showing in the use of sentences I choose, sometimes, expanding too much for not having in memory the word I’m looking for,
and for that, some came to vilify me, in the beginning of my efforts to join the comments,
because I felt I had something to bring,
and when the attack came, I found that the group here stood up for me, and chase away the troll,
and I LIKED IT, and learned to do the same, not as well but a bit, according to my capacity,
as to give back what they did for me, from the beginning, and I learn of who the CONSERVATIVES


Ah, Bees, your comment about your accent made me laugh! My wife (I’m a widower) was of Aztec ancestry, and whenever she got angry with me, she’d revert to rapid-fire Spanish and I couldn’t understand a word she was saying!
I once made a comment that it was like getting my ankle chewed on by a Chihuahua, and she was off again…
But really, if someone attacks you personally, or makes a personal attack on someone that you feel duty-bound to protect, then by all means, defend yourself.
If they’re just being ugly, dishonest, shrill or otherwise objectionable, there’s no point in reacting by being ugly yourself. That’s what they want, after all. Best to remain calm and point out their errors. This has the added bonus of, as I said, driving them batsh*t crazy. Which is fun.
I like you, Bees. You’re nice people. If someone dares attack you here, I’ll gladly put on my tarnished armor, pick up my worn and battered lance, and step in with a smile on my face.
After all, this whole discussion began when I spoke against abusing Greg, do you think I’d let you be attacked?
Hi-Yo Silver! Away! (Petercat falls out of saddle, horse runs away…)

yes, I like to know you are on my side,and I like to know you are smiling, Ill try to find some more funny things to say, to make you laugh again,
in between the bashing the trolls,
oh falling of the horse, hope you know how to fall of the horse,
where do you put your computer?

are you still running to find SILVER?
I can visualize that

It’s easy to fall off a horse, anyone can do it.
Staying on is my challenge.
When I was young, I had a friend with Downs Syndrome who owned a horse. He was a pretty big kid. One day we were out in the barn and his horse planted a hoof on top of my foot, pinning me to the spot. Larry backed up to the horse’s chest, squatted down, wrapped his arms around the horse’s front legs, and stood up. Lifting the front of the horse off of the ground!
Did I mention that he was a big kid?
I’m not too fond of horses. They are best appreciated from a distance.

that must have hurt,
I’m afraid of horses but I love them, and where I was they had horses, I would give them apples, there was the old black beauty, I cried when she was found dead of old ages, thor, the red one, nice horse,
the other 3 crazy teen ages chasing the black beauty, and LUKE THE GIANT ONE, RUNNING TO MY CALL


According to the Congressional Research Service the federal government spent $745 billion in 2011 on welfare payments.

That means that government took 20% of every dollar it extracted from citizen’s wallets (or borrowed on their behalf) and gave it to somebody else.

Let’s put this another way.
A family must take in less than $22,350 a year to be ”in poverty.”
There are 16,807,795 households (2011 numbers) like that in the USA.
IF we had simply taken that $745 billion in welfare and GIVEN it to all of these households, we would have given each home $61,194 in 2011.
That would have made them upper middle class at $83,000 dollars.
Of course, that’s not what happened.
Plenty of gov’t workers lived off of the system, too.
Those ”doling out the dole,” as I call them.
The poor remain poor, but the gov’t workers get fat.