We’re not supposed to call them food stamps. They are called SNAP cards. They are credit cards. Poor people spend. They eat. We pay. We have credit, so they don’t need credit. They have cards.
Under the voters’ radar, local food stores have created profitable businesses. They deal only with SNAPpy people. They deliver food right to their door.
In Texas, there are 3.8 million of these people. The number is growing daily.
This has been going on for at least 20 years. These free food trucks drive through poor neighborhoods to deliver food. They are not paid cash. At least 99% of the eaters use food cards.
Randy’s drivers sell what the company bought from grocery behemoth Sysco Foods. Frozen meat and breaded shrimp. Catfish nuggets and chicken tenders.
But junk food is the big seller.
“Exactly,” James confirms.
Pop Tarts, Famous Amos and Oreo cookies. Honey buns, candy bars and corn dogs. Laffy Taffy and cheesecake. Pickles are the only vegetable listed on a Randy’s menu.
Delivery to your door isn’t for you. It’s not for me. We pay. They eat.
Officials with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Services confirmed that Randy’s, Boxes and Bags Mobile Grocery and Bag Lady on Wheels all are approved vendors in the food stamp program, which now goes under the name of SNAP, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.
It’s legal. But because it’s profitable, welfare advocacy groups are outraged.
“Who needs junk food on wheels?” said Michele Simon, president of EatDrinkPolitics, a watchdog group that issued a report this year calling for more transparency about how much all grocery retailers the USDA approves make from the food stamp program.
It’s not enough that the welfare state provides free food. It is supposed to keep capitalists from cashing in.
The welfare state is all about cashing in: the recipients, the government administrators, the special-interest welfare advocacy groups, the farmers.
Everyone except for you and me. We pay.
The owners of food stamp stores on wheels refused to be interviewed. Wise.
How much these vendors receive from sales is protected by the USDA as a trade secret and “can only be disclosed for purposes directly connected” with the administration of the agency’s program.
In other words, taxpayers are not allowed to see how much of their money goes to each USDA SNAP-approved grocer or mobile food truck. The Argus Leader of South Dakota has sued the USDA for access to the information. The suit is pending.
So, what else is new?
Then there is nagging. The nanny state always nags.
Millions in taxpayer dollars also are spent on efforts to re-train food stamp recipients about nutrition and how to stay away from the “middle aisles” of grocery stores, the area where most snack food resides.
Fat poor people pay no attention. Why should anyone think that they will?
The nanny state supplies the funds, which it gets from us. After that, the nanny bureaucrats can be ignored by the poor.
No one likes being nagged. Everyone likes free food.
“We hope that people on food stamps will make good decisions about how to use those benefits,” Goodman of HHSC said. “But that ability, of course, can be greatly affected by where you live. Many people on food stamps don’t have access to convenient transportation, and some live in neighborhoods that don’t have a store offering a good selection of healthy foods at a reasonable price,” she said. “That creates double the challenge when trying to put healthy meals on the table.”
Nag, nag, nag. Subsidize, subsidize, subsidize. This is the welfare state, as administered by the white upper middle class.