Example #85798957575 why the government sucks at doing anything

My husband pointed me to NPR’s story on the rise of “disablity” in America- the staggering rise in folks who claim to be too disabled to work. Apparently, we’re having some sort of plague called “disability.” Of course, we’re always hear that everyone WANTS to work. But then there’s these people.

People do NOT want to work. Not if they can stay at home and eat cheetos, and get a check. The irony is that we’ve never had a society that’s more accommodating to disabled folks. The ADA redid buildings, sidewalk ramps, bathrooms … you name it. You can’t watch a public speech without someone signing it to the apparently hordes of deaf folks who are present. Yet, a bit of back pain?

They are now useless. And we now have 14 million of these folks.

n Hale County, Alabama, 1 in 4 working-age adults is on disability. On the day government checks come in every month, banks stay open late, Main Street fills up with cars, and anybody looking to unload an old TV or armchair has a yard sale.

Sonny Ryan, a retired judge in town, didn’t hear disability cases in his courtroom. But the subject came up often. He described one exchange he had with a man who was on disability but looked healthy.

“Just out of curiosity, what is your disability?” the judge asked from the bench.
“I have high blood pressure,” the man said.
“So do I,” the judge said. “What else?”
“I have diabetes.”
“So do I.”

Certainly some are truly disabled. But a lot are not. Many have ambiguous pain. Pain which many folks live, and work with.

You really win the lottery if you can get your child labelled as disabled.

People in Hale County told me that what you want is a kid who can “pull a check.” Many people mentioned this, but I basically ignored it. It seemed like one of those things that maybe happened once or twice, got written up in the paper and became conversational fact among neighbors.

Then I looked at the numbers. I found that the number of kids on a program called Supplemental Security Income — a program for children and adults who are both poor and disabled — is almost seven times larger than it was 30 years ago.

And for a kid – you can get SSDI if you have been diagnosed with mental or intellectual problems. Which could be something such as not progressing well in school.

Jahleel is a kid you can imagine doing very well for himself. He is delayed. But given the right circumstances and support, it’s easy to believe that over the course of his schooling Jahleel could catch up.

Let’s imagine that happens. Jahleel starts doing better in school, overcomes some of his disabilities. He doesn’t need the disability program anymore. That would seem to be great for everyone, except for one thing: It would threaten his family’s livelihood. Jahleel’s family primarily survives off the monthly $700 check they get for his disability.

So … what do you think the chances are that Jahleel is going to start doing better in school? As with welfare, people are motivated by the wrong incentives, which will lead to LIFE-LONG dependency.

You truly need to read the entire article. It explains why states are encouraging people into SSDI (because it takes them off of THEIR welfare rolls, and into the federal system off SSD). States even hire PRIVATE companies to search their welfare rolls for likely candidates who can be switched. PCG is one such company:

The company has an office in eastern Washington state that’s basically a call center, full of headsetted women in cubicles who make calls all day long to potentially disabled Americans, trying to help them discover and document their disabilities:

“The high blood pressure, how long have you been taking medications for that?” one PCG employee asked over the phone the day I visited the company. “Can you think of anything else that’s been bothering you and disabling you and preventing you from working?”

The PCG agents help the potentially disabled fill out the Social Security disability application over the phone. And by help, I mean the agents actually do the filling out. When the potentially disabled don’t have the right medical documentation to prove a disability, the agents at PCG help them get it. They call doctors’ offices; they get records faxed. If the right medical records do not exist, PCG sets up doctors’ appointments and calls applicants the day before to remind them of those appointments.

For a contract with Missouri, PCG gets $2,300 per person it switches from welfare to disability.

And then there are the disability lawyers. You can’t watch tv without catching a commercial for “Binder and Binder.”

When he started in 1979, Binder represented fewer than 50 clients. Last year, his firm represented 30,000 people. Thirty thousand people who were denied disability appealed with the help of Charles Binder’s firm. In one year. Last year, Binder and Binder made $68.7 million in fees for disability cases.

Thirty-three percent of newly disabled workers have “Back pain and other Musculoskeletal Problems.” As my husband does- he broke his neck.

Yet every day, he hauls and moves batteries. Because he’s not lazy, and would never-ever live off the government while he can still earn for himself.

NPR tries to put a socio-economic spin on it by claiming that poorly educated folks, who can no longer do any sort of physical job, have nothing else to turn to.

Somewhere around 30 years ago, the economy started changing in some fundamental ways. There are now millions of Americans who do not have the skills or education to make it in this country.

Because – they cannot get a “desk job.”

I don’t think it’s necessarily the skills and education. It’s the grit and spirit. People don’t WANT to work. Aches and pains come with age. Everyone suffers from some affliction as they age.

Too many people would rather sit on their ass.

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8 Comments on “Example #85798957575 why the government sucks at doing anything”

  1. Car in Says:

    Between our imperial political class and the moochers – that is where the rest of us exist. We’re focked.

  2. Jay in Ames Says:

    My mother in law had a stroke, wasn’t able to return to work full time right away, and still has difficulty working 40 hours.

    Disability denied. Can’t get it.

    Why can’t we fix this problem? The people that do deserve it aren’t getting the help they need. Indeed, the people that the system is designed to help.

  3. Car in Says:

    What did she do? Apparently it’s easier to get if you lack anything beyond a high school degree. If you have a desk job – then it’s harder to get SSD. Even if you could supposedly get a desk job, but didn’t have one previously.

    The sheer numbers tell the truth of the situation.

    My husband had an employee whose TWO parents were both on SSD because they had “tried to commit suicide.” They were both Oxy addicts.

    I work with a woman who says her husband is “handicapped.” he has a bad back. He’s about 27.

    So … we’re going to support him for his entire life, because he has a bad back? At the age of mid-twenties, he can’t learn a trade?

    It really is just amazing

    Besides, if all these handicapped people can’t work, I guess we don’t need to make all those expensive fixes to office buildings to accommodate the ADA. Right?

  4. Jay in Ames Says:

    She’s a high school graduate, and makes the donuts at Wal Mart in the mornings. At the time she had the stroke, she was a waitress. Hardly desk jobs. So, she had to give up the better paying waitress job, because she couldn’t do that anymore.

    They were just cut to under 30 hours at Wal Mart, too. Not her, since she’s a good worker. Wal Mart health insurance saved her butt, that’s for sure.

  5. Hotspur Says:

    See Great Britain if you want to know what we will look like in twenty years.

  6. Car in Says:

    Apparently she should have called Binder and Binder. I believe it’s all a big game anyway. People almost always get denied right away and then they need to appeal, etc.

    my dad got it, but it took a while. I mean – a year or something.

  7. Car in Says:

    Of course, they must know your mil isn’t really “one of them.” She wants to work.

    She’s not grifter enough.

  8. LizzyTish Says:

    You can thank Reagan for this.

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