Twenty years ago this week, President Clinton signed a bill that replaced the federal government’s traditional cash welfare program with Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, aka welfare-to-work. Has this been a success? That depends on your criteria, on what it is you want a welfare program to do.
Efforts to dismantle the U.S. welfare state rely on the myth of the redemptive Depression. It's an erasure and repackaging of a great crisis.
The money in the farm bill is dominated by food stamps. The debate over it is dominated by everything else. But debate or no debate, the Senate wants to cut food stamps a little, the House wants to cut them a lot more, and now GOP Rep. Mike Conaway of Texas wants to bring House Democrats around to the farm bill by making sure food stamps will get slashed regardless.
"I don't think we have laid the ground for a national conversation on poverty. People just don't know the facts."