The greatest nation in the world

The greatest nation in the world

by digby

America, fuck yeah!
For many, a $10 or $20 cut in the monthly food budget would be absorbed with little notice.

But for millions of poor Americans who rely on food stamps, reductions that began this month present awful choices. One gallon of milk for the kids instead of two. No fresh broccoli for dinner or snacks to take to school. Weeks of grits and margarine for breakfast.

And for many, it will mean turning to a food pantry or a soup kitchen by the middle of the month.

“I don’t need a whole lot to eat,” said Leon Simmons, 63, who spends more than half of his monthly $832 Social Security income to rent a room in an East Charleston house. “But this month I know I’m not going to buy any meats.”

Mr. Simmons’s allotment from the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, commonly called food stamps, has dropped $9. He has already spent the $33 he received for November.

The reduction in benefits has affected more than 47 million people like Mr. Simmons. It is the largest wholesale cut in the program since Congress passed the first Food Stamps Act in 1964 and touches about one in every seven Americans.
You know what would be an awesome idea? If we cut his Social Security too. Isn't it a fact that his benefits are calculated improperly because it fails to take into account that he can always substitute the expensive food he might prefer with cheaper versions? I'm sure I heard that somewhere:
The chained CPI assumes that when prices for one thing go up, people sometimes settle for cheaper substitutes (if beef prices go up, for example, they'll buy more chicken and less beef).
See? This man is doing exactly what's the Chained CPI wants him to do -- well, he can't afford meat at all. Maybe not even food. But still, this is obviously the sort of discipline our disabled and elderly need to develop. It's character building.