Cutting Food Stamps a Shameful New Low for the GOP... and That's Saying Something

Steve Sack / Cagle CartoonsI had no idea the poor were fraudulently trading their food stamps for the Wall Street derivatives that crashed the entire f@*#ing economy. Well, that’s what House Republicans would have you believe given their vote to cut the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly food stamps, by nearly $40 billion over the next 10 years.

This is a new shameful low for the Grand Old Party. A remarkable achievement given their recent concentrated efforts to suppress minority voters; eliminate women’s reproductive rights; destroy public education; neuter labor protection laws; repeal affordable healthcare for 30 million Americans. I doubt there’s a morally low enough bar they cannot limbo under.

More sickening is the fact the House vote came the day after the DOW reached a record high. In other words, the Republican Party celebrated further Wall Street excess by cutting a program that feeds low-income families with children where the parent(s) work for a living but don’t make enough to adequately feed their families. If America needed a reminder that 95 percent of all income gains since 2009 have gone to the top 1 percent, they got one. In other words, life’s good for those who drove the economy into a ditch with wanton, unsupervised greed that came at the end of three decades of Reagan’s holy trinity: deregulation, privatization, and free trade.

When historians look back on this post-Great Recession era, they will wonder how on earth it was that the fat cats got away with murdering the poor and the middle class. They got away with it thanks to the remarkable right wing media machine. One can only admire in appalling awe how the right so successfully shifted blame away from those who gambled away your 401k, and, instead assigned it to those who lost their jobs and homes thanks to the unsupervised financial schemes concocted by cocaine fueled thirty-somethings in the boardrooms of Goldman Sachs, Wells Fargo, Bank of America, and JP Morgan. Remember, it was a modest proposal to bailout individual underwater mortgages that hatched the Tea Party movement.

The GOP and their backers have blamed everything and everyone for the Great Recession, from teachers unions to police pensions; from deficits to labor protection laws. And of course, the poor, or as Republicans call them – “moochers.” That’s right, Wall Street crashed the economy – resulting in the loss of 800,000 jobs per month in late 2008. In the 5 years since, almost all of the economic gains have gone to those on or within a free lunch range of Wall Street, yet instead of persecuting a single banker for the crash; instead of implementing the Buffet rule, which would have shared some of the tax burden at the top; instead of attacking wasteful spending in the bloated military budget; instead of addressing how it is that Wall Street banks (the real moochers) can borrow from the Fed at almost no cost, then lend out the money at 3 to 6 percent, it’s those who are living below the poverty line who the GOP wants to make pay, because, apparently, the poor are too “lazy” to take advantage of the booming stock market.

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