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The Right To Eat (and Why Being Poor Isn't a Crime)


#1

The Right To Eat (and Why Being Poor Isn't a Crime)

Jill Richardson

There’s one group of people in this country who probably get less sympathy than anyone else: felons.

If you’re a convicted felon, very few Americans care about your plight. Can’t find a job or an apartment because of your record? Too bad, we tell them, you shouldn’t have committed a crime.


#2

Although many of today's worst trends seem to be born inside the USA, some of these trends are going global. In order to work the triplicate control protocols based on punishment, surveillance, and brute force, a legion of undesirables must exist, and if they don't they will be created. Just as Naomi Klein's Shock Doctrine explains how disasters will be capitalized with some created to speed the process, there is a psycho-social equivalent.

In India, the caste system enabled those close to the fiscal bottom--but not designated as Undesirables per se--to feel superior to someone else. In impoverished Latin American lands where men feel a loss of power that's largely the result of occupier-imperialists, they practice a form of misogyny known as machismo. So long as the man can treat "his" woman like chattel, he has a measure of self-worth.

Hierarchy is always cruel and never truly Democratic. Since the spread of odious treaties like NAFTA added to the deregulatory craze that allowed banks and Wall Street to invent their own non products and sell them to the tune of many trillions, wealth has aggregated to the already privileged few with far less available to the many.

The U.S. lobbyists who work for Corrections Corps. of America and other private prison firms require warm bodies to fill those rapidly being built jails and prisons. That's why more and more actions (mostly on the part of poor or darker hued persons) are being criminalized. Readers of this site are privy to the fact that traffic violations and things as minimal as parking tickets are being used to assign poor folk to prison/time where the time served also rings up a tab that can never be paid.

By not granting minimal support to Ex-felons, there's an increased probability that such persons will end up back "in the system." This is how Disaster Capitalism operates. In order for institutions based on incarceration, muscular law enforcement, border controls, and other increasingly militarizing protocols to remain underway... a percentage of citizens must be designated as America's Untouchables and/or enemy combatants, terrorists, or criminals.

The Control State is a Cancer that's showing no sign of any quick or immediate cure. It eats its own.


#3

"...and the poor are there just to scare the shit out of the middle class..."
-George Carlin


#4

And if the middle class had nothing but beans to eat?
Remember Romney's comment that us 47 percenters have the gall to feel entitled to food. I cast an additional fart in his general direction.


#5

But if your objective isn't to prevent crime, but to criminalize a class of people (and make beaucoup bucks for your buddies in the bargain), then anything you can do to increase recidivism is in your interest, isn't it?

It's as American as the apple pie out of reach of these wretches.


#6

Disagree. In fact, felons -- unlike the poor -- are eligible for a number of services, including legitimate employment services. We do provide food, shelter and medical care to felons, but have determined that our jobless poor, and many of the unemployable, are undeserving of these most basic human rights.


#7

On food stamps specifically, these are for the elderly poor, the disabled and the working poor. Not everyone can work (health, etc.) and there aren't jobs for all who urgently need one. The US shipped out a huge number of jobs since the 1980s. You can't get a job once you no longer have a home address, phone, bus fare. The very poor are not eligible for any sort of aid. Such liberal media as MSNBC have censored our poverty crisis out of their reporting.


#10

Lord, am I ever on board Voice. But we must understand going in that if the recipient squanders his swag on drugs and booze and ends up dying of malnutrition in the gutter, then there he/she shall so stay until such death. That concept is a bit hard for some people to wrap their head around, so those people are going to try to work the current welfare system back into being right alongside the new program, and then we might end up with what we have now plus the new program. I am not enchanted with that concept, but I am willing to negotiate with those who are.
As the for comment in the article "They’re still human beings", nice but not relevant to the 1%. The statement presumes human beings have some intrinsic value, perhaps moral, other than laboring for the material improvement and physical stability of the 1%'s society, and our decision makers, kindly provided to us by that 1%, are not convinced of that. The same goes for the comment in the article "Maybe they’re trying to function in society as upstanding citizens". Trying doesn't cut it on this planet. Only making it happen does. Our benevolent decision makers figure that once someone makes it happen they won't need SNAP or all the rest of the free stuff, so let's give 'em every reason to go out and make it happen. Let's give 'em hunger and homelessness. Yep, when all else fails, that means criminal behavior once again. A lot of people will figure, "Hey, it worked the first time until I got caught. This time I just won't get caught."