by Julie Tisdale
City & County Policy Analyst
I was doing a little shopping yesterday at the local drug store when I came across this:
Ok, so the camera on my phone is lousy, but that is clearly beer and those red labels next to the prices are reminders that this particular store does indeed accept SNAP cards. SNAP is the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or food stamps to most of us.
Of course, you can’t actually use SNAP cards to buy beer, but that’s beside the point. If you’re shopping the beer section, if you have enough spare cash to buy alcohol, then why on earth are you receiving food stamps in the first place? Why am I, a taxpayer, paying for your bread and milk when you can afford beer?!
And this is the problem with government welfare programs. There’s simply no way that a bureaucracy dealing with million and millions of people can tell if someone really needs help with groceries or if he’s just blowing his money on frivolous things. The whole system invites abuse, and here that invitation is obvious. If there was any doubt that the food stamp program in particular, and government welfare in general, is broken, here’s the evidence.