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Critical tipping point is reached

Published: Thursday, July 11th, 2013

There are now more Americans receiving food assistance than there are private sector workers, according to a July 8 article by Elizabeth Harrington of CNSNews.com.
A record number of 101 million Americans now receive subsidized food assistance from the federal government which is roughly one-third of the nation’s population. The U.S. Agriculture Department (USDA) estimates that this record number are on the receiving end of at least one of the 15 different food programs sponsored by USDA, at a cost of $114 billion in fiscal 2012.
This means that the number of Americans receiving some kind of food assistance has now surpassed the number of private sector workers in the United States. There were 97,180,000 full-time private sector workers in 2012, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The population of this country is 316,000,000, which means that nearly one-third of Americans receive food aid.
The largest segment of this food assistance goes to the 47,000,000 Americans, or 22.5 million households,  who participate in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), more commonly known as food stamps. The USDA says the number of Americans on food stamps is an “historically high figure that has risen with the economic downturn.”
The National School Lunch program provides 32 million students with low-cost or no-cost meals. Another 10.6 million students participate in the School Breakfast Program and 8.9 million receive benefits through the Woman, Infants and Children program each month. 
Add to these programs, 3.3 million children at day care centers who receive snacks through the Child and Adult Care Food Program. Then there is a Special Milk Program for schools and a Summer Food Service Program through which 2.3 million children received aid in July 2011 during summer vacation. At farmer’s markets, 864,000 seniors receive benefits to buy food and 1.9 million women and children use coupons from the program.
There is a “potential for overlap” with the many food programs offered by the USDA, which allows participants to have more than their daily food needs subsidized completely by the federal government. A July 3 audit by the Inspector General said the USD’s Food Nutrition Service (FNS) “may be duplicating its efforts by providing participants total benefits in excess of 100 percent of daily nutritional needs when households and/or individuals participate in more than one FNS programs simultaneously.”
No kidding. This is just one small example of an arm of the federal government that has grown so big and so inefficient that one hand doesn’t know what the other is doling out. Food stamps are meant to help the genuine poor in this country to always have some food on the table and for those temporarily down and out to have something to eat until they get back on their feet.
In 2008, there were 28.2 million Americans on food stamps. The increase of nearly 19 million to the program in just five years has led to President Obama being called “the best food stamp president in our nation’s history.” Granted, the economy did tank for a while, but the fact that there are now 47,000,000 of our country’s citizens on food stamps does not bode well for this administration.
Like other out-of-control government spending programs, there is no accounting for the vast waste, fraud and abuse with food stamps and other government food-related programs. All we know is that the numbers on food assistance keep rising with no end in sight.

There are now more Americans receiving food assistance than there are private sector workers, according to a July 8 article by Elizabeth Harrington of CNSNews.com.

A record number of 101 million Americans now receive subsidized food assistance from the federal government which is roughly one-third of the nation’s population. The U.S. Agriculture Department (USDA) estimates that this record number are on the receiving end of at least one of the 15 different food programs sponsored by USDA, at a cost of $114 billion in fiscal 2012.

This means that the number of Americans receiving some kind of food assistance has now surpassed the number of private sector workers in the United States. There were 97,180,000 full-time private sector workers in 2012, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The population of this country is 316,000,000, which means that nearly one-third of Americans receive food aid.

The largest segment of this food assistance goes to the 47,000,000 Americans, or 22.5 million households,  who participate in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), more commonly known as food stamps. The USDA says the number of Americans on food stamps is an “historically high figure that has risen with the economic downturn.”

The National School Lunch program provides 32 million students with low-cost or no-cost meals. Another 10.6 million students participate in the School Breakfast Program and 8.9 million receive benefits through the Woman, Infants and Children program each month. 

Add to these programs, 3.3 million children at day care centers who receive snacks through the Child and Adult Care Food Program. Then there is a Special Milk Program for schools and a Summer Food Service Program through which 2.3 million children received aid in July 2011 during summer vacation. At farmer’s markets, 864,000 seniors receive benefits to buy food and 1.9 million women and children use coupons from the program.

There is a “potential for overlap” with the many food programs offered by the USDA, which allows participants to have more than their daily food needs subsidized completely by the federal government. A July 3 audit by the Inspector General said the USD’s Food Nutrition Service (FNS) “may be duplicating its efforts by providing participants total benefits in excess of 100 percent of daily nutritional needs when households and/or individuals participate in more than one FNS programs simultaneously.”

No kidding. This is just one small example of an arm of the federal government that has grown so big and so inefficient that one hand doesn’t know what the other is doling out. Food stamps are meant to help the genuine poor in this country to always have some food on the table and for those temporarily down and out to have something to eat until they get back on their feet.

In 2008, there were 28.2 million Americans on food stamps. The increase of nearly 19 million to the program in just five years has led to President Obama being called “the best food stamp president in our nation’s history.” Granted, the economy did tank for a while, but the fact that there are now 47,000,000 of our country’s citizens on food stamps does not bode well for this administration.

Like other out-of-control government spending programs, there is no accounting for the vast waste, fraud and abuse with food stamps and other government food-related programs. All we know is that the numbers on food assistance keep rising with no end in sight.



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