Johnson's "War on Poverty" had welfare as the front line. Welfare paid people to not work, not get married, and have/keep kids out of wedlock -- and it punished people that tried to get off of it. Shocker of shockers, you get what you incentivize, and welfare got more people to not work, have kids out of wedlock, and it hurt the kids, families, and society at large. Once trapped in programs hard to get out of, the dependency class resented the masses for not giving more, and the masses resented them back for being irresponsible: it drove the wedge between the classes far deeper and divided us more than ever before. Poverty, single parenthood, gangs and crime went UP tearing the fabric of society, despite trillions of dollars poured into it. But the important part is the left won the votes of the gullible (like Chickens voting for Colonel Sanders).
Having done social work, it was not uncommon to hear teenage girls talking about how they were going to get knocked up to get that govt. paycheck and get out of the house from irresponsible mom's and their abusive boyfriends. Of course the Mom's had stopped rating their partners by their ability and willingness to provide and create a stable home: they already had the check from Uncle Sam. All those that bought into the idea that they could have a free ride, if they just had kids they can't pay for, learned too late that the lure was better than the reality, and the programs made it hard (impossible) to get out of.
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We have the richest poor in the world. Having done a fair amount of social work (and being in many "poor people's" homes on cases). Many of our poor struggle over issues like whether they should drop their cable TV or go out a few times a week less. While much of the rest of the world's poor is struggling with buying shoes or getting up to 2 meals a day. more...