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Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Trump 's war on the poor

One of the most depressing books I've ever read was Oliver Twist, with its storyline of life in a Victorian era workhouse. Here's a description of such a place, from a 2012 Guardian article about proposed welfare laws in the UK ...

[...] the workhouse – a place where paupers would be incarcerated and made to work. In 1834 the new poor law was promulgated. At its heart was the notion of less eligibility: reducing the number of people entitled to support, so that only those who could not work (rather than those who would not work) would receive support. It's here that the distinction between the deserving and undeserving poor became a legal one. To deter those who would not work from applying for poor law support, workhouses were made deliberately unpleasant, often resembling a prison as much as a refuge. Critics condemned them as "the new Bastilles". As we celebrate the 200th anniversary of Charles Dickens, we are witnessing a return of just the sort of language about the poor that he did so much to expose as cruel and inhuman ...

What made me think of Dickens was a story in the news today that Trump is going to make welfare and food stamp recipients work for their benefits. First he gives huge tax cuts to the rich and now he will punish the poor.

2 Comments:

Blogger Katherine Nielsen said...

Everything Trump does and says is so depressing. I don't think he has any ability at all to empathize. Unfortunately all that the members of his party want to do is enable him to advance their agenda.

3:43 AM  
Blogger crystal said...

Yeah. I'm pinning a lot of hope on Mueller coming up with impeachable info on Trump. Maybe that raid of his lawyer's documents and computers, etc., will bear decisive fruit.

9:49 AM  

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