De Laudibus Stultitiae: An Open Letter to Rep. Paul “Skip” Stam

By Mike Appleton, Guest Blogger

Dear Rep. Stam:

Two days ago I came across a story in The Huffington Post concerning your co-sponsorship of a bill to prohibit the sale of lottery tickets to North Carolinians who are bankrupt or on welfare.  Since I am certain that your proposal will generate a great deal of criticism in the liberal media, I am writing to lend my support to your idea and to commend you on your political courage.

As we all know, the misuse of welfare assistance is widespread.  In my state of Florida, Gov. Rick Scott attempted to address the problem by securing passage of a bill mandating drug testing of welfare applicants, only to have the will of the people thwarted through an injunction issued by an activist federal judge.  There always seem to be corrupt forces opposing efforts to prevent our tax dollars from supporting drug addicts and gamblers.

I am sure you will remember the comments of the former lieutenant governor of your sister state, South Carolina, who observed a couple of years ago that giving financial assistance to the poor is much like feeding stray dogs; they always come back for more and they breed promiscuously.  How true that is! Why bother to seek employment when I can get a monthly check from the state to buy drugs and lottery tickets?  And this attitude is hardly surprising. After all, people who choose to live like animals plainly lack the discipline and moral character necessary to make positive contributions to the community.

Now I know your bill has received some negative reaction from commercial interests who do not wish to be responsible for enforcement of the prohibition. While that attitude is shortsighted and unhelpful, I do agree that we ought not create undue burdens on businesses or subject merchants to possibly awkward and embarrassing encounters.  If you will excuse my immodesty, I do have a suggestion that might eliminate those concerns.  If welfare recipients were required to have a discreet, but visible, tattoo disclosing their status, they would be readily identifiable among the general population and the lottery ban would be effective without the slightest discomfort to honest businessmen.  Indeed, implementation of this simple idea would facilitate the adoption of legislation containing a comprehensive list of products and services which should be unavailable to welfare recipients.

I believe a small “W” would be suitable for identification purposes, but that is merely suggestive.  Perhaps you could consider having the state officially sponsor a contest, as is sometimes done in connection with the selection of a new license plate, with a cash prize awarded to the person submitting the winning tattoo design.  This would encourage the involvement of North Carolinians in the civic life of your state and would simultaneously serve to educate citizens on the meaning and importance of the legislation.

I urge you to remain steadfast in the pursuit of passage of this bill.  It is time that we remind the unproductive elements in society that food stamp assistance, like voting, is a privilege to be carefully dispensed only to the worthy.  If we cannot trust our state and local government officials to enforce the principal tenets of Christian morality, whom can we trust?

20 thoughts on “De Laudibus Stultitiae: An Open Letter to Rep. Paul “Skip” Stam

  1. The animals taking food stamps should be forced to add a tatoo” ” I am a gladiator and where’s the beef” . ? Gambling is a terribly obsessive addiction though.
    Rep Stam ‘s starving the lottery mania could be a plan to moderate the addiction.

  2. A very fine letter Mike. I like it.

    I can say without any reservation if the state came out with a stupid law such as this I would telephone the lottery commission the next day and have them remove the Lotto machine and scratch tickets from my store.

  3. Since the biggest “takers” are corporations, perhaps the tattoo could also be put on all corporate executives and their lobbyists and biggest individual shareholders so Congress would know these takers shouldn’t be heard.

  4. Mike – I think you missed how wildly successful that drug test program was in Florida. I believe they discovers 0.6% of applicants failed the test (and some number of those failures were bad results). This saved the state several tens of dollars in welfare payments. But thats not the important part! The important part was that many thousands of dollars found their way from the state to private companies involved in the testing program. Many friends of the Governor (Lex Luthor or Bat Boy depending on the camera angle) made a lot of money from this deal.

  5. There is an easy and more equitable solution available… Welfare payments should be attached to jobs….. Surely there is much work needed to be done in the state of Florida, and many able-bodied welfare recipiants who could do that work.

  6. East – the problem with that idea is that many of those on welfare are kids, how many 8 year olds does it take to fill a pot hole?

    But lets say you just wanted their parents policing butts on the highway. Well, someone still has to watch those kids so that means day care. Then there is the whole deal about a fair wage for the work being done. Even in a third world hell hole like Florida wages do have some minimum. How about benefits like health insurance and vacation time? Plus, if you have them working 40 hours a week how will they ever get a chance to apply for a non-welfare forced-labor camp job? What if the parent wants to get some education or job training? Having lived in Florida I can tell you there is no way the voters of the state would pay for any of this.

    For every problem there is a simple, easy, solution. It is inevitably a bad idea.

  7. Great article Mike… Buying one ticket with cash assistance… Come on…. Reminds me of the German inheritance laws….

  8. Welfare is a gift from the government, not a civil right, the check or credit card should only be able to be redeemed for necessary needs in stores selling food, clothes, etc. not redemmed in liquor stores,casinos, etc.

  9. Whatever is done for reform, give them free condoms, on a daily basis, delivered to their homes.

    The lottery is just the first wedge. Then there will be a race track with horses and betting. Next comes the riverboat casino. Then the casino built on land. Then the baby carriage. Preachers in NC gotta get off their arses on this condom and lottery thing. The rubber meets the road.

  10. But you folks need to think this out. Say there is some welfare cheat out there named JoeBob. He is working off the books and making a good income but is lying to the state and getting food stamps (in the form of a debit card) and his live-in storage unit is getting Aid For Dependent Children. So, they got extra cash. If that dollar goes for booze then JoeBob might have a car wreck. If it goes for a lottery ticket he is in essence “giving back”. In the lottery, the state givith and the state taketh away. So what if this cheat ends up winning the lottery. He will spend it on things and put the money back in circulation.

    We need to put lottery machines right next to the condom machines at every schoolyard, church, playground, boat ramp, shopping mall, and take some of this money back.

    Tell Sam or whatever his name is that North Carolina needs some of the money from welfare to come back to the coffers. What we need in NC is a State owned gambling casino right by the projects.

    Another thing the state could do to put welfare recipients to work is to recruit all those young women who get pregnant once every ten months and put them to work in the casino as hatcheck hookers. Provide birth control. Give them some workplace dignity instead of laying around the trailer waiting for Smitty to come by for a roll in the hay. Its called Welfare To Work. They do it in Vegas. They dont brag about it cause what plays in Vegas stays in Vegas.

  11. Nicely donte. ((*_*))
    Of course those who support not on welfare will have to give their names when they buy a lottey ticket so the clerk can check and see if they are on welfare. Don’t think many would like that.
    Another case of them that got shall get (lottery tickets and the chance to be a gazillionaire) them thats not shall lose.

  12. I say no right to vote if you are on the dole. That is what Bob Dole wanted to do. Sterilize a man or woman after one welfare child. That thing about rubbers from HumpinDog just wont work. Move some factories to NC and put the welfare kids to work. Stop offshoring jobs to China. Put a lien on the lottery winnings for any welfare recipient.

  13. what they’ll do is anyone trying to collect on a win will be checked against the rolls for TANF or food stamps. so anyone winning will have to find someone not one the rolls to collect for them. maybe they get a percentage of their winnings, maybe the person collecting “forgets” where the ticket came from. then the collector gets his/her a$$ shot. then the state gets to pay to incarcerate the winner.

    talk about a win, win.

    sounds like skippy is on CCA’s (corrections corporation of america) payroll.

  14. How about people on welfare get free lottery tickets as part of their benefits, and if one of them wins, the winnings are shared equally among
    all those on welfare. After all, they’re the ones who really need the money.

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