MAY 16, 2012
To further expand the government’s bulging food-stamp program, the Obama Administration is allocating $4 million to provide farmers’ markets not currently participating in the welfare plan with the wireless technology necessary to redeem the benefits.
The investment will create a “win-win” situation by helping American farmers and, more importantly, providing healthy fruits and vegetables to low-income folks who would otherwise not be able to afford it. After all, the nation’s obesity epidemic has hit poor and ethnic minority communities hardest because they don’t have access to healthy foods, according to the feds.
This is why Michelle Obama made revolutionizing the inner city diet the focus of her $4.5 billion law to conquer childhood obesity. The First Lady pushed the measure through Congress asserting that it’s the government’s duty to protect poor and ethnic minority communities that are overwhelmingly obese compared to their wealthier, white counterparts.
Under this theory, food-stamp recipients—who are supposed to be too poor to afford groceries—are eating too much junk because it’s cheaper and more readily available in their low-income neighborhoods. So in comes Uncle Sam with a multimillion-dollar infusion to con farmers into accepting the welfare vouchers. This will increase the consumption of healthy food and expand the customer base for local farmers, according to U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan. She’s the one who coined the arrangement “win-win.”
The USDA is the agency responsible for running the nation’s swollen food-stamp program. Under this latest arrangement, farmers’ markets that don’t have access to phone lines or electricity will get it compliments of U.S. taxpayers. This will make it possible for them to redeem the welfare vouchers through the government’s Electronic Benefit Transfer system, which is used by grocery stores.
A record number of Americans already receive food stamps and the figure will keep rising, according to congressional estimates. Just last month, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) revealed that 45 million people—one out of every seven U.S. residents—got food stamps in 2011, an astounding 70% increase from 2007. This represents a cost of $72 billion for U.S. taxpayers, which is a substantial increase from $30 billion four years earlier.
It’s all part of the Obama Administration’s effort to eradicate “food insecure households.” In the last few years the administration has spent millions of dollars to recruit even more food-stamp recipients and has doled out hefty cash rewards to states that sign up the most people. One state even bragged about a $5 million performance bonus it got from the feds for its “swift processing of applications.”
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