So apparently, Bush thinks it is the government's duty to "promote marraige", as part of the welfare reform package.
"Stable families should be the central goal of American welfare policy," Bush said. "Building and preserving families are not always possible - I recognize that - but they should always be our goal."Excuse me, Mr Bush, but as I see it, the primary goal of welfare policy should be to get the recipients off welfare as soon as possible. Whether they're single, married, divorced, or polygamous is really none of the government's concern.
Then again, this is the same government that tries to legislate consensual sex between adults, so I really shouldn't be surprised.
Bush defended the proposal, saying his administration will give "unprecedented support to strengthening marriages," which in turn will improve the lives for millions of children.For a party that claims to want to have a throwback to some 1940s idealistic concept of values, this is truly bizarre. The way I've always had it, and understood it to be traditionally, is that marriage is a bond between two people who wish to spend their lives together. Y'know, because they love each other.
Certainly, this is not the way it always is. But adding just one more "incentive" to get married for a reason other than love seems a bit out of place with the Good Old Fashioned Values that Bush and his lackeys espouse. If the person in question doesn't want to get married for whatever reason, well, we'll just bribe them with various welfare incentives. Then later, we can point at the increase of the American Nuclear Family during the Bush administration and use that as a platform for re-election.
"We will work to strengthen marriage," he said. "The most effective, direct way to improve the lives of children is to encourage the stability of American families."Bend over, single working mothers. Bush would like to shaft you.
The president said his new plan has three other main goals: Empowering states to seek new and innovative solutions to help welfare recipients achieve independence.After the conference, Bush was heard to remark, "We will proactively utilize hands-on, innovative approaches to the e-marriage paradigm, which will supercharge the e-solution integration with welfare-based applications."
Bush said the nation's "War on Poverty," launched in the 1960s, did little to reduce poverty among children. From 1965 to 1995, federal and state spending on low income and poor families went from $40 billion to more $350 billion a year, he said.Unlike, say, the War on Drugs, which receives even more funding, and has negligible results as well. Yet the War on Drugs is touted as a Wonderful Thing(tm).
Anyway, the real fun stuff starts here:
As part of this family-driven initiative, Bush also said the administration will allocate $135 million to advocate abstinence for America's youth -- a proposal that drew shouts of "amen" from the crowd.Sigh. And what, pray tell, is the government going to do about teen sex (not that it should even be their business..)? It's going to be the same as their methods of educating youth on the dangers of drug use: "Uh, sex is bad, mm-kay?"
"This is trying to make a stable family unit, and I think it's only right that the government gets involved, to help families help themselves," he said.He continued, "Help us help you help us help you."
What possible justification can Bush offer for making it the government's business to involve itself in family affairs? Would a more stable family be better for America's youth? Probably. Are stable marriages a good thing? Probably. Is it the role of a government to influence life choices such as this? Hell no, it isn't, and I for one am getting very bloody tired of the government sticking it's fat bulbous head into situations where it need not be.
Thanks, Bush, but your government should do the following things: establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, and secure the blessings of liberty. And stay the fuck out of everything else.
Notice that I deliberately left out "promote the general welfare", that being the ham-fisted, all-encompassing battle cry for any politician who wants to introduce legistlation regarding matters that are not the government's legitimate concern. "Promote the general welfare" means, to me, "make sure your citizens aren't all lying in gutters". It does not mean "legislate your personal vision of ethics and morality on everyone".
God, I'm bitter.