In the grand tradition established by generations of charlatans and thieves, many politicians might like to distract people from the increasingly undeniable evidence of economic disaster in the U.S., a multi-vector disease that's been visited upon Americans by government lockdown diktats, taxes, jab mandates, clampdowns on energy exploration and delivery, inflationary central banking, so-called “regulations” that really are re-labeled forms of economic fascism, and a metastatic welfare mentality favoring special interests as wide-ranging as military contractors, “green energy” projects, and state and local governments.
And now, we have more evidence that the U.S. economy is as anemic as the welfare-warfare federal government is unsustainable.
According to the U.S> Department of Agriculture, since Donald Trump’s March 13, 2020 “Pandemic Emergency” announcement, federal expenditures on the "Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)" - better known as "food stamps" - have skyrocketed by nearly one-hundred percent, increasing from $60 billion in 2019 to nearly $120 billion in 2022.
And the news gets even more grim. Broken down even future, the data shows the SNAP program has ballooned from 35.7 million recipients in 2019 to more than 41 million last year, with per-person benefits increasing from $129.83 a month before the pandemic to $230.88 a month in 2022.
It’s jaw-dropping news. But in an America where most of the news about corrupt federal, state, and local government activities is jaw-dropping, some of our neighbors might feel nonplussed.
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Of course, many who critically study the politically loaded, malleable, terminology bandied about by so-called “officials” have noted the mercurial manner in which those so-called “authorities” have manipulated terms such as “pandemic.” Likewise – and for a lunch longer period of time -- many people have been trying to sound alarms about the dangers of nice-sounding federal lucre programs like “Supplemental Nutrition Assistance.”
The rise is unsurprising. Unfortunately, when burdening their minds as to how in the world this spike in recipients might have appeared, some “beltway-based” observers have been focusing on the wrong target.
The Wall Street Journal correctly has pointed out that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) circumvented “normal” Congressional “review” procedures as it expanded its spending:
“All of this undermines transparency and accountability for a program that provided food stamps to some 41 million people in 2021. The Biden Administration is using the cover of the pandemic to expand the entitlement state beyond what Congress authorized.”
And that’s the extent of the Beltway “pro-wrestling” approach to what is a much deeper problem than what “Congress authorized.”
The sad reality is that too many contemporary observers limit their reporting to this level, not bothering to acknowledge that “Congressional authorization” confers no more validity to an unconstitutional program than a flock of birds, chirping in the trees. Offensive numbers such as these definitely are alarming, but they allow us to focus on the fundamental problems of the SNAP program, and the USDA, itself.
Begun in 1961 by John F. Kennedy, via Executive Order, SNAP could not claim any constitutional legitimacy even if Congress had passed legislation for it and its “food stamps.” And the USDA, started under an unconstitutional paradigm promoted by Abraham Lincoln in 1862, has been a corrupt money-grab-and-payoff scheme ever since. The stark realities are myriad in this news about the ballooning of SNAPS expenditures and recipients, and they offer many lessons.
Even as Joe Biden tips his hand that this “pandemic emergency” is rhetorical, as he literally just announced a date of May 11 for the end of his and Trump’s “Emergency Declaration”, and as news emerges that, thanks to all of the government burdens and expenditures in America, real disposable income just saw its second-worst drop since 1932, Biden and his Health and Human Services (HHS) head Xavier Bacerra reportedly are contemplating declaration of a “healthcare emergency” in what they see as barriers to women hiring others to kill their babies in the womb.
All of these federal stories offer us – the serfs forced to pay their salaries and pay for their glad-handling of special interests – the opportunity to look beneath the admittedly offensive surface numbers and disagreements.
We can take away larger lessons about the Constitution, truth, and morality, and share them with the ones we love.
Related: Democrat Congressman on $74 Billion Food Stamp Program: 'The SNAP Benefit is Too Low' | MRCTV