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Rockntractor
10-05-2011, 08:08 PM
By Sara Murray

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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The share of people relying on government benefits has reached a historic high, in large part from the deep recession and meager recovery, but also because of the expansion of government programs over the years. (See a timeline on the history of government benefits programs here.)

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.

High unemployment and increased reliance on government programs has also shrunk the nationís share of taxpayers. Some 46.4% of households will pay no federal income tax this year, according to the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center. Thatís up from 39.9% in 2007, the year the recession began.


Most of those households will still be hit by payroll taxes. Just 18.1% of households pay neither payroll nor federal income taxes and they are predominantly the nationís elderly and poorest families.

The tandem rise in government-benefits recipients and fall in taxpayers has been cause for alarm among some policymakers and presidential hopefuls.

Benefits programs have come under closer scrutiny as policymakers attempt to tame the federal governmentís budget deficit. President Barack Obama and members of Congress considered changes to Social Security and Medicare as part of a grand bargain (that ultimately fell apart) to raise the debt ceiling earlier this year. Cuts to such programs could emerge again from the so-called ďsuper committee,Ē tasked with releasing a plan to rein in the deficit.

Republican presidential hopefuls, meanwhile, have latched onto the fact that nearly half of households pay no federal income tax, saying too many Americans arenít paying their fair share.

UPDATE: Nearly half of the population lives in a household that has at least one member who receives some kind of government benefit. An earlier headline incorrectly suggested that half of American households receive some government benefit. Due to differences in household size that isnít the case.
http://blogs.wsj.com/economics/2011/10/05/nearly-half-of-households-receive-some-government-benefit/

I'm going to have to put in more hours to support all these people!:(

NJCardFan
10-05-2011, 09:37 PM
http://blogs.wsj.com/economics/2011/10/05/nearly-half-of-households-receive-some-government-benefit/

I'm going to have to put in more hours to support all these people!:(

A lot of people collecting social security already put in the work.

Novaheart
10-05-2011, 10:20 PM
http://blogs.wsj.com/economics/2011/10/05/nearly-half-of-households-receive-some-government-benefit/

I'm going to have to put in more hours to support all these people!:(

Read the drama carefully.

If a working son lives with his mother who is on social security, then there is another household counted in this report. But there isn't anything wrong with that. It might be a sign of the times that the son lives with his mother, or it might simply be that they are a functioning family that isn't pissing away money on multiple houses.

I'm giving serious thought to moving in with my mother. I go by there a couple of times a day anyway and it's not like it will cramp my party lifestyle. Why are we paying two power bills, two cable, two homeowners, etc? It's a waste. We're supporting too many houses and too many cars.

Look at the people in this country bitching because they are struggling. A lot of them moved out when they turned 18 and you have a married couple and two adult single kids supporting three houses when there is no reason for it. The Chinese people you pay your rent to in California don't live like that, it's wasteful. The immigrants who are prospering with their corner stores don't have four apartments for four people, it's wasteful.

Something has been wrong with the American culture a lot longer than this depression. Our great grandparents weren't wasteful, but we are.

Novaheart
10-05-2011, 10:22 PM
A lot of people collecting social security already put in the work.

And a lot of grandparents have medicaid eligible grandchildren living with them. There are also people who have adopted special needs kids who come with medicaid because adoptive families couldn't possible afford to insure them or pay their bills.

Elspeth
10-05-2011, 10:54 PM
A lot of people collecting social security already put in the work.

But that doesn't change the fact that the tax burden is getting heavier on working people. It has to. There's nowhere else to get the money from.

marv
10-05-2011, 11:04 PM
I have my Federal pension, and both my wife and I have SS. It all totals out to about $32k gross annually. BUT.....we have our house and vehicles free and clear. We planned it that way long before I retired in '92.

Tipsycatlover
10-06-2011, 12:02 PM
Nova wants your kids to move back in with you. Otherwise its wasteful and we owe it to the parasitic class not to be wasteful.

NJCardFan
10-06-2011, 05:11 PM
But that doesn't change the fact that the tax burden is getting heavier on working people. It has to. There's nowhere else to get the money from.

The burden is giving illegals social security even though they haven't paid a dime into the system.