Friday, January 25, 2008

She won't stop

Having gotten blowback from big dogs like Tbogg n Atrios for being a heartless asshole, Megan decides to make it worse. This might be the single dumbest post she's written on my watch. No kidding, it's that bad.

Why not give the poor food?:

If giving them food stamps is such a great idea, why not give them the food you say they are unable to purchase, and turning them fat: produce, whole grains, lean meats, etc.

When you think of actually lining people up to hand them a big bag of quinoa and a chicken breast, the stupidity of this program seems fairly self evident (or at least, I hope it does). How happy would you be to get a chicken breast and a bag of quinoa? Not very. Maybe you wanted chicken breasts tonight, but probably you didn't. And you definitely didn't want quinoa. No, you didn't. Stop lying.
And you don't have a freezer or place to store as yet uncooked foodstuffs, do you? Stop lying.
This is the basic premise of the post, folks. Giving poor people free food might not meet their cravings at that particular moment, and thus is a bad idea.
Most poor people, if they had access to more money to spend on food, would not buy a lower-calorie, higher fiber diet laden with fruits and vegetables. We know this because almost no one in America eats that kind of diet; it is almost exclusively the province of a certain substrate of the upper middle class. Poor people, given more money to buy food, might upgrade their calorie consumption, but they would not eat like a corporate lawyer from the Upper West Side.

And this is not a moral judgement. Being thin, eating little, having a high fiber diet--the fact that so many people think I am judging the poor reflects their own belief that there is some sort of important moral content to one's weight or calorie consumption. There isn't.
But eating humane meat does make her more moral, and if poor people could afford, or were given, humane meat then how would Megan distinguish herself? Fuck poor people, who are too dumb to want to eat healthily, apparently, what could such a thing mean for Megan's self-regard?
But the only reason to give people food, rather than cash that they might, if they desired, use to buy food, is that they are starving and need food right away. The poor in America are not starving. They do not need food right away. They certainly don't need you telling them that they can have $45 a month, but only if they promise to spend it all on vegetables. They have enough problems without having to contend with well-meaning bureaucrats trying to raise them.

Now, I assume that most people will concede that the poor are not starving, but at the same time say that living on the food budget implied by food stamps is pretty miserable. Indeed it is--though please, don't tax me with the bloody food stamp challenge, because first of all, I've already done it for an article I never sold, and second of all, the average food stamp grant is not what people actually live on; it's a budgetary supplement, not a food budget.
Y'hear that, Tbogg? Megan's tried it, and still doesn't give a shit. Ain't her problem.
And fuck this giving out healthy food idea. We aren't talking about starving Africans but malnourished Americans. Why would they deserve any consideration? They're all fatties anyway.
But wait,
I am sympathetic to this argument. But that doesn't mean I want to increase food stamps, for the same reason that I don't want to actually give people food: many of the people I give the food, or the food stamps to, would rather have the cash to spend on something else. If peoples' incomes are inadequate to the bare minimum needed for decency in modern America, then I am in favor of topping up their incomes. But food stamp programs are stupid at the best of times, and in a population that has clearly reached and surpassed caloric sufficiency, they are ludicrous.
..... I ..... how the hell do you write such things? I've been on this beat 4 months or so, and I'm still flabbergasted by the idea a human being could think, let alone be paid by a once venerable institution to write, such things. 15 year old Johnny would rather have an iPod than lose 20 pounds and gain 5 years of life expectancy? Cool, Megan owns stock in Apple.
There are two possibilities with food stamps:

1) They are entirely fungible, so that every dollar of food stamps frees up a dollar to be spent on something else. This makes the program good stimulus, but perfectly idiotic social policy.
As opposed to cash handouts? Why? Cuz Megan says so.
2) They are not perfectly fungible, so that at least some of the increase has to actually be spent on food. Many people who would rather spend the money on something else are forced to buy food, and many of those people are probably obese.

Food stamps continue not because they're great for the poor, but because they're terrific for the farm lobby. If you want to give stimulus money to the poor, increase the EITC, welfare grants, disability, or unemployment insurance. (I'm on the record as being in favor of the former, against the latter). But for God's sake, can't we all agree that food stamps are a program whose time has gone?
Megan says so, what more reason to agree do you need? Fuck, shes on record about it. STFU and accept it. Disagreeing with her only means she's right, anyway.
Megan is not a good person.

*Update- Changed one word so as not to let my temper put me in a bad light.


NutellaonToast said...

I'm not sure whether or not to be happy or sad that you took this one. On the one hand, it was quite a bit to go through. On the other hand, so many opportunities! God, she is vile.

brad said...

I also call dibs on the inevitable post from Megan chiding Jane of FDL for permitting Tbogg to engage in such obvious misogyny.

Anonymous said...

Would it be possible to take Paris Hilton off the sale to Bedouin nomads list?

She's only rich and useless. She doesn't make a living trashing the less fortunate.

I suggest she be replaced with Dr. Laura.

Anonymous said...

Given what McMegan is able to sell, one wonder what's in that unsold Food Stamp Challenge piece? How bad must it have been?

Anonymous said...

Most poor people, if they had access to more money to spend on food, would not buy a lower-calorie, higher fiber diet laden with fruits and vegetables.

Oh, for cock's sake. My parents remember rationing. The transformation of nutrition into a middle-class status indicator has taken place in living memory. But please, Megatron, feel free to denote the poor as fat and stupid, and that you find them, above all, distasteful.

She's right that food stamps are compromised by the demands of the farm lobby. But that means you stop sucking on Big Ag's corn-syrupy cock.

And she really doesn't have a fucking clue, does she? You have to assume she's literate enough to appreciate that when people read what she writes, the overwhelming impression is primarily that of a 21st-c Marie Antoinette. This has not changed since she first arrived on the internets.

Anonymous said...

Given what McMegan is able to sell, one wonder what's in that unsold Food Stamp Challenge piece?

I think it's incumbent upon her to post it, given that she's not going to make some coin from it. And that she did so in order to make some coin from it says all you need to know about La Megatron.