Brewster Plays with Numbers

Governor Carcieri said, “When I look at our rolls of people receiving ‘family-independence’ [benefits] whether it be RIte Care, whatever, the vast majority of these are women with children and they are not married and this is not a good situation.”
To this, Kate Brewster of the RI Poverty Institute responded, “I don’t think anyone wakes up and decides to become a single parent. That notion is absurd…He spoke yesterday of single mothers on cash assistance having multiple children and the facts are that 77 percent of the families on the Family Independence Program have only one or two children. And the idea that single mothers are the cause of our budget woes is also a gross misrepresentation. Today, state spending on cash assistance through FIP accounts for less than one-half of 1 percent of our entire state budget.”
I’ve already addressed her clever use of the factually correct point that “state spending on cash assistance through FIP accounts for less than one-half of 1 percent of our entire state budget” while leaving out the other programs–such as RIte Care and subsidized Day care–that have essentially replaced cash for services.
Now for the rest…
Brewster said, “I don’t think anyone wakes up and decides to become a single parent. That notion is absurd…” Yes, they all experience immaculate conceptions. C’mon! They should make decisions to ensure that they don’t become a single parent in the first place!
Brewster also said, “He spoke yesterday of single mothers on cash assistance having multiple children and the facts are that 77 percent of the families on the Family Independence Program have only one or two children.” Well, notice that while the Governor spoke of single moms with multiple kids, Brewster chose to refute this with statistics about “families” with one or two children.”
The facts are that–for an equitable comparison–53% of the families on FIP have two or more children. And–given that 8% of the families are defined as two-parent–we can conclude that 92% are single-parent.
The interesting thing is that these numbers are remarkably consistent with past years (read the reports). So even as the total number of those on FIP goes down, the demographic characteristics remains essentially the same. The overwhelming majority are single-parent families and just over half have more than one child. Isn’t that what the Governor said?

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Subscribe
Notify of
guest
16 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Monique
13 years ago

“Brewster said, “I don’t think anyone wakes up and decides to become a single parent. That notion is absurd…” Yes, they all experience immaculate conceptions. C’mon! They should make decisions to ensure that they don’t become a single parent in the first place!”
Yes, pregnancy is achieved through deliberate actions and/or deliberate non-actions. We spent the last thirty five years empowering women, including conveyance of the specific message that they (we) control their (our) bodies. Does Ms. Brewster wish to backtrack on that?

Kevin Hassett
Kevin Hassett
13 years ago

OK, OK, OK. I mean, just when is enough, enough?
It’s time to simply STOP listening to these freaking morons like Kate Brewster. SHE IS A RETARD! There is nothing to be gained from their absolute moronic thoughts. These liberal poverty pimps, and the union whores, will NEVER, EVER be part of a solution.
CUT, CUT, CUT and let them squeal like the pigs they are.
Just do it.

michael
13 years ago

A lot of the “single” mothers I encounter are anything but. The “family” is “single mother” on paper only. Many people are married in the eyes of their church or native country but know better than to claim the marraige as legitamate here. Our generosity is considered bounty by these people, trying to get as much as they can some kind of challenge. The more they get, the more they are admired by their peers. There is a certain Robin hood rational out there in the inner city. They are convinced it is honorable to rob from the rich because they are poor.

Monique
13 years ago

“… but know better than to claim the marraige as legitamate here. Our generosity is considered bounty by these people, trying to get as much as they can some kind of challenge.”
A voice from the front line.

John
John
13 years ago

I lived for a number of years in Latin America. At the risk of sounding politically incorrect (but then again, Kate Brewster never posts here), Michael’s comment would not surprise a single government official in the countries where I lived. For whatever reason (and differnet authors have blamed it on the Spanish or Catholic heritage), Latinos actually admire someone who really takes the state for a ride, and gets more beneficios than anyone else. That’s just the way the game is played. Why should anyone be surprised that when you move a Pamananian or Dominican to RI they don’t turn into a Swam Yankee overnight?
Michael, I do have one question for you, and for the public school teachers who read this blog. Now that the budgetary choice has become stark — your pension and health care benefits (and in some cases, your jobs) or continued support for RI’s bloated welfare programs — why aren’t more public sector union members telling their leadership, “enough is enough?”
I’m not trying to bust chops, here; I really am curious about what the obstacle is to a stronger outcry. Is it really the case that some lingering sense of class and/or ethnic anger is trumping what would otherwise seem to be economic self-interest on the part of public sector union members? Or is it something else altogether? Thank you in advance for your insight.

michael
13 years ago

Campaigning against welfare programs to continue receiving pay and benefits only feeds the misconception that public sector unions and welfare programs are synonomous. My compensation is earned. Welfare programs are not.

Tim
Tim
13 years ago

Marc,
Of course Kate Bewster must ‘play’ with the numbers. There is nothing legitimate about her or her work. She’s a used car saleman who peddles love of government paid for misery. What scares poverty pimps like Brewster more than anything is the white hot spotlight being shown on their world. Liberal nation here in Rhode Island is out of their minds hysterical over the governor’s comments. It’s a hilarious spectacle to watch.
Check out ‘Girls gone wild’ on Matilda’s blog. lol
Michael,
Why do public sector union leadership consistenty cozy up and align themselves with the poverty industry here in Rhode Island? Fighting over the same dwindling dollars. That’s what feeds those misconceptions you speak of. Why do the rank and file continue to allow this?

michael
13 years ago

The misconception is that we are “fighting over the same dwindling dollar.” Labor unions are not in competition with the poverty institute. Perhaps the labor union’s higher than average contributions to charitable causes give the illusion of a partnership.

Greg
Greg
13 years ago

I wouldn’t say that’s a misconception, Michael. Those that can are LEAVING the state and those that are staying are not big taxpayers. So that dollar IS dwindling. And the unions and the poverty pimps WILL have to fight for it because raising taxes is simply out of the question.
Personally I’d rather it go to people who are WORKING for a living and adding to the economy than those leeching off of it.

Anthony
Anthony
13 years ago

John, You’re right, your post is politically incorrect and stereotypical. Statistics show that Latinos are following the path of past American immigrants that become upwardly mobile within a generation. The largest group that has shown limited upward mobility does not have Spanish or Latino heritage and is not Catholic. In fact, they’re overwhelmingly Protestant. And they aren’t immigrants, either. By far, the largest group demonstrating limited upward mobility is African-Americans (as opposed to African-born immigrants who do show upward mobility over a generation). A recent Pew study found that 45% of African-American children born to middle-class children end up falling to the bottom of the income scale over a generation. I’m sure there will be a mulititude of studies trying to explain the socio-economic reasons for this, but it’s the reality. There may be a problem with the sheer number of immigrants illegally entering the country, but I think we’d find out that if proper immigration policies are enacted and numbers are managed, the issue of Latino poverty will not be chronic, anymore than the issue of Irish, Italian or French immigrant poverty experienced in the early 1900’s became a chronic condition. I think you find that many people living in Latin America view obtaining government benefits from their home governments as a “score” because in many Latin American countries, there is no opportunity for upward mobility. I don’t believe that the majority of people receiving benefits are trying to “scam” they system, but there is a stark reality. RI just doesn’t have the ability to fund benefits, pensions, health care and other assorted perks. Certainly, the state should first crack down on those trying to “scam” the system. But my guess is that the “scammers” are really a small minority. What makes the situation difficult is that we have… Read more »

rhody
rhody
13 years ago

Michael nailed it. It’s called divide and conquer. Basically, the executive powers that be encourage Democratic legislative leaders to play in the corporate reindeer games (as the M&M boys do regularly) to leave the least powerful group out of the equation.
Court the lawyer-lobbyist complex and the Democratic Party’s corporate prostitutes (even those like Bill and Joe who wet their beaks from the union bucket), and laugh and point at the people who most need a lift from government. Democrats who don’t want to endanger their seat in the suite next to The Don at Foxboro, The Dunk, etc. will fall in line.

Greg
Greg
13 years ago

I don’t mind paying to lift people up but do I have to carry them on my back for the next five years?

John
John
13 years ago

Michael, You wrote: “The misconception is that we are “fighting over the same dwindling dollar.” Labor unions are not in competition with the poverty institute. ” Do you seriously believe that is true? If you do, I can only infer that you believe the answer to that $600 million and growing budget deficit is to raise taxes. Yet at the recent Revenue Estimating Conference, the data showed falling sales and income tax revenues. Since RI’s population hasn’t changed much in terms of total numbers, something else must be going on. Maybe it is more internet purchases (but that would only explain sales tax declines, not income tax declines). Maybe it is more Rhode Island residents working and shopping in Massachusetts (that would explain both). And/or maybe it is a weakening in the RI economy — which would drive down RI income and therefore income and sales tax collections. But the point is this: raising the marginal individual income tax rate on “the rich” (which, in RI, means anybody no eligible for RITE Care and subsidized child care) doesn’t result in higher income tax revenues if either of these potential causes of declining income tax collections is true. So that basically leaves broadening the sales tax base to include a whole range of services that can’t easily be bought on the internet or in Massachusetts or Connecticut (but not, of course, fees paid to lawyers, which would strike at too many General Assembly members’ income). So I can only conclude that, since you don’t see public sector unions and welfare programs (i.e., the beneficiaries and the crowd of public and not-for-profit organizations who are paid to “lift them out of poverty”) competing for funding, you must be strongly in favor of a substantial broadening in RI’s sales tax base as the… Read more »

Greg
Greg
13 years ago

If the GA goes back into session and punts this problem with tax increases I’ll organize the taxpayer revolt rallys if I have to. Enough is enough. We need to cram the halls with pissed-off taxpayers to fight the poverty pimps and union thugs for our money.

Ragin' Rhode Islander
Ragin' Rhode Islander
13 years ago

I believe that a couple of weeks ago Senator Teresa Paiva-Weed (District – Welfare Industry) was quoted as saying that any “solution” to the budget “crisis” would “have to” include “revenue enhancements” or some such thing.
Look for token cuts and substantial tax increases. It’s the Democrat “m.o.”
It’s probably a good time in invest in a U-HAUL franchise in RI so as to cash in on what will be an increasing stream of taxpayers “voting with their feet” and getting the hell out of this politically corrupt tax hellhole.

wotopoilt64
wotopoilt64
8 years ago

Queen Elizabeth II is overtaking her great-great-grandmother as the longest reigning English monarch, but Victoria’s longevity won’t be forgotten The spectacular celebrations on June 5-7, 2012, for Elizabeth II’s 60 years on the throne was nearly a match for her ancestor’s. When Victoria celebrated her Diamond Jubilee, a minimum of a quarter around the globe – the part she ruled over – knew about it. Some 300 million subjects cheered. Flags flew on specially built monuments, fountains and clocks, and buildings and streets were named after her through the British Empire. Jubilee – a view from the crowd is definitely an exhibition at Kensington Palace in London that tries to give a flavour of celebrations on June 22 1897. An estimated 3 million ended up to look at the procession working in london comprised of 50,000 troops all over the empire led by Captain Oswald Ames, at 6ft 8 ¾ inches the tallest soldier in the British army. It took three hours to pass through, leading from Buckingham Palace to St Paul’s Cathedral where there was a 20-minute service. The 78-year-old queen remained in her carriage outside due to her illness, unlike Queen Elizabeth, aged 86, who stood watching the Thames Diamond Jubllee pageant for more than two hours in atrocious weather. Victoria Recalls a Joyous Day Victoria was born and raised in Kensington Palace by her German mother, Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld. All her life she kept a regular diary, and to celebrate Queen Elizabeth’s Diamond Jubilee, extracts from her journals have been published online. Of her procession, Victoria wrote: "The cheering was quite deafening & every face appeared to be more full of real joy." Many of the monuments erected to celebrate her jubilee continue to be in situ. Clocks were particularly popular, plus they were set ticking… Read more »

Show your support for Anchor Rising with a 25-cent-per-day subscription.