Saturday, February 4, 2012

Mitt Romney Doesn’t Care About the Very Poor – How Do We Know? - He Says So

But As a Victory in Florida Present Mr. Romney Gets a 25% Pass on His Statement – There is Some Context

The thing that may make the 2012 election very interesting is the fact that when he has to go away from his written and rehearsed remarks, Mitt Romney says some very interesting, insensitive, misleading, fraudulent and stupid things.  Case in point is his comment on the “very poor”.

A large number of commentators will focus on this part of his statement,

“I’m not concerned about the very poor, 

Mr. Romney has just said, and that sounds like a pretty callous statement from any politician and would be aspirant to high political office, much less one from a man whose daily income is far greater than the annual amount for the very poor.  But the point Mr. Romney was making in his ill chosen manner was that he believes the very poor are well taken care of in this country, and that government policy should be directed at increasing the welfare of the not very rich and the not very poor., assuming of course that things like the Estate Tax are abolished, giving Mr. Romney a nice $100 million or so tax cut.
So as part of the congratulations due him and in part for thanks for disposing of Mr. Gingrich in such a negative manner in Florida The Dismal Political Economist will give Mr. Romney a 25% pass on his remarks.  We will not use it as an illustration to say that Mr. Romney doesn’t care about the very poor.

The reason that Mr. Romney does not get a 100% pass is that the full the statement

“I’m not concerned about the very poor, because they have a safety net,” Romney said, citing food stamps, housing vouchers and Medicaid. He pledged to repair holes in that safety net “if it needs repair.”

shows how utterly disconnected this very wealthy man is from the true conditions of the very poor. 

The very poor lead wretched lives of quiet destitution;  the programs Mr. Romney cites serve only to make their lives minimally bearable and to prevent mal nutrition and suffering from horrible sicknesses, disabilities and diseases.  If Mr. Romney truly thinks that the “safety net” is sufficient to provide for a suitable life for the “very poor” his is so incredibly clueless as to the state of real America as to disqualify him from the Presidency.

And the policies that Mr. Romney will pursue if he is elected will make the very poor even worse off.  Changing Medicaid to a block grant to the states will sharply reduce its funding, and result in greater sickeness, suffering and preventable death among the very poor.  Other programs that Mr. Romney proposes will cut huge holes in the already moth eaten safety net he thinks is adequate.

Note to Mr. Romney:  The reason they call these people the “very poor” is that even AFTER all the assistance they are “very poor”.  Really, they are, visit and learn about their lives some time.

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