Liberals and conservatives: how would you feel about this alternative to entitlement and welfare programs?
While I do not generally like new government programs, if this replaced things such as Social Security, Medicaid, Medicare, and all other entitlement and welfare programs I think it would be okay (it may also even be able to compete strongly with insurance companies). So, what is the idea? A voluntary need-meeting citizen help program. The idea is simple: set up a program in which whosoever will may enroll. Participants may use it to publicly register financial needs, such as medical expenses, college tuition, business startup costs, disability help, etc. There will be no restrictions on what needs you can register besides activities which are already illegal (for example, you cannot register your need of $10000 to pay off a hitman to kill your brother). When registering, you will properly categorize your need so that others will be able to find it. Once you have registered, your request will be reviewed for authenticity (registering a fake need or lying about the nature of your need would be a federal offense). If it comes through clean, your need will be visible on the national database (optionally anonymous). On the other end, you can only request up to 85% of however much you have contributed (and upon receiving your assistance, the amount you received will be deducted from your available request funds until you contribute more). People newly involved with the program would start with permission to request up to $1,500, but they must contribute to request more than that. To contribute, you go to the needs database and find a need you would like to meet. You can sort them by cost, category, date, or other criteria, or you can simply choose one at random. Using your preferred payment method, you can send the funds necessary to meet the need you have chosen. At that point, 85% of whatever you contributed will be available to request for any needs you may have. The benefits of this system seem to me to be many. First, it is entirely voluntary. If you do not want to contribute, you do not have to do so, but you will not be able to receive any benefits, either. Second, it would reduce the need for expensive or ridiculous insurance, as many common needs could be met through this system. Third, the 85% rate would mean that the program funds itself, possibly with a surplus. To make it more worthwhile, the rate would increase as you give more, and contributions would be tax-deductible. Fourth, in general the money will not be wasted because (1) each request would be screened for authenticity and (2) people who make ridiculous requests will probably not find anyone else in the program willing to contribute to them. Fifth, it would cut down on much bureaucratic waste because the only people involved would be the participants, the authenticators, and the IT guys keeping the system running. Sixth, it would give people more flexibility when they need money. If your need doesn't fall into the exact parameters of any of the current entitlement or welfare programs, you won't get money, but under this system you could get money if anyone was willing to give it. Here's a sample of how this might go: a new college student is having trouble finding a job. He has just entered this program, so he requests $1,000 out of the initial $1,500 he may ask for. A wealthy businessman wants to use the program to begin building available funds instead of life insurance, and while on the database he sees the college kid's $1,000 need. He decides to meet it and sends the kid $1,000, thus building for himself his first $850 towards his goal. The kid gets the money and eventually finds a job and makes it through college. In time, he becomes a successful lawyer. Eventually he wants to make a contribution out of charity, so when on the database he finds that the wealthy businessman has died and his family requests $2,000 for various death-related expenses. Moved, the lawyer gives the family the $2,000 they asked for, and has built for himself should he ever need it $1,700 of available funds to request. So, guys, what do you think? @Mac: You didn't read what I wrote, did you? I'm not ranting; I am explaining a detailed proposal. In fact, nowhere in my text will you find me making any negative remarks about current programs. @Whoovian: Of course it is essentially the same as a sophisticated, information-age private charity. It is only connected to the government in that the government would be the one operating and administrating the program, even though it operates almost as though independent from the government. Connections to the government are valuable, though, in that they would serve to satisfy some liberals and almost all moderates, plus it would make the program widely known and accessible.
Asked By: Christian Libertarian Time Lord - 3/4/2013
Best Answer - Chosen by Asker
It's an interesting idea, but I see a couple of problems... More
Answered By: joe_the_buckeye - 3/4/2013
Additional Answers (3)
"A voluntary need-meeting citizen help program." sounds like a euphinosim for private charity which is how people got help before government welfare programs existed. A lot of people with cash are willing to help others. Some becuse it make them look good others becuse they beieve they have an obligation.
Answered By: Whoovian - 3/4/2013
Federal Debt ties the hands of our Government. Changing the way our debt-based monetary system works will free people up to do more for our country. People are inhibited by the Government's constant borrowing. The problem with getting people to work is that money is more and more being seized by world monetary elites... More
Answered By: Pat - 3/4/2013
That's stupid. So if your car is hit by an 18 wheeler, and your leg is sliced off, you have to jump through these hoops for 6 months BEFORE you can get medical care? If you lose your job today, your kids have to wait six months to eat again? You have no frikkin clue how life works kid. Shut up. Go away.
Answered By: Pat - 3/4/2013
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