Tag Archives: joblessness

Clueless and Mean–Not an Attractive Combination

Ah, Arizona! You do seem to produce some outstanding examples of defective humanity.

The recalled Arizona senate president who proposed the state’s controversial anti-immigration law said he could fix public assistance programs by forcibly sterilizing women who receive aid and by requiring drug tests for all recipients.

“You put me in charge of Medicaid, the first thing I’d do is get Norplant, birth-control implants, or tubal ligations,” said Russell Pearce on his weekly talk radio program. Then we’ll test recipients for drugs and alcohol, and if you want to [reproduce] or use drugs or alcohol, then get a job.”

He suggested drastic cuts to food assistance for needy families, reported Phoenix New Times, and he urged strict limits to items that could be purchased with what little help was available.

“No cash for Ding Dongs and Ho Hos, you’d only get money for 15-pound bags of rice and beans, blocks of cheese and powdered milk – all the powdered milk you can haul away,” Pearce said. “If you want a steak or frozen pizza, then you’d have to get a job.”

Speaking of ding-dongs, this particular one evidently believes that unemployment is a choice– that jobs are plentiful and folks without them simply don’t want one. There is ample evidence to the contrary (most unemployed and underemployed people are desperate for work–and their incidence of drug use is lower than among the population at large), but I get the distinct impression that evidence is a foreign concept to this repellent excuse for a human being.

Punishing people for being poor seems to be the flavor of the day among the clueless and cruel political demographic.

Pearce’s delusions evidently aren’t restricted to the job prospects and drug habits of poor folks: Pearce, who served as first vice-chair of the Arizona Republican Party until the furor over these remarks prompted his resignation, and who lost a 2011 recall election over ethics concerns and his sponsorship of the controversial anti-immigration law, claimed on his most recent job application that he attended graduate school at the University of Arizona. Arizona begged to differ; the school had no record of him attending. He also claimed to have “attended graduate school” at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. I guess you could consider that technically true; Harvard reported that he once attended a three-week seminar there. And then there was this:

Pearce accepted but didn’t report nearly $40,000 in paid junkets and college football tickets from Fiesta Bowl officials while helping them receive state subsidies.

Maybe instead of sterilizing and starving poor people, we should sterilize and starve the unethical and soulless influence-peddlers living off the political fat of the land.