The Department of Illiteracy

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Wehrwolfen, Dec 17, 2012.

  1. Wehrwolfen
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    Wehrwolfen Senior Member

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    The Department of Illiteracy​



    12/14/2012 | Staff

    [​IMG]

    One of the tragic legacies of the Great Society is the violence inflicted upon the family as an institution. Through a series actions, calculated or not, the family has been devalued as the bedrock of civil society and replaced with the government acting in loco parentis for not only the children it comes into contact with but also for the parents.

    While we are all familiar with the incentives provided by the government to discourage marriage by women living in poverty through the provision of various allowances and services so long as they are unemployed and unmarried and have children, fewer are aware of the incentives provided to the people living at the poverty level (though evidence indicates that 199% of federal poverty line may be the real ceiling) to have their children diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) in order to boost their family income by about $8400 per year.

    What makes this even more shocking is that the New York Times’ leftist columnist Nicholas Kristof has noticed it:

    THIS is what poverty sometimes looks like in America: parents here in Appalachian hill country pulling their children out of literacy classes. Moms and dads fear that if kids learn to read, they are less likely to qualify for a monthly check for having an intellectual disability.

    Many people in hillside mobile homes here are poor and desperate, and a $698 monthly check per child from the Supplemental Security Income program goes a long way — and those checks continue until the child turns 18.

    “The kids get taken out of the program because the parents are going to lose the check,” said Billie Oaks, who runs a literacy program here in Breathitt County, a poor part of Kentucky. “It’s heartbreaking.”

    This is painful for a liberal to admit, but conservatives have a point when they suggest that America’s safety net can sometimes entangle people in a soul-crushing dependency. Our poverty programs do rescue many people, but other times they backfire.

    Some young people here don’t join the military (a traditional escape route for poor, rural Americans) because it’s easier to rely on food stamps and disability payments.

    Antipoverty programs also discourage marriage: In a means-tested program like S.S.I., a woman raising a child may receive a bigger check if she refrains from marrying that hard-working guy she likes. Yet marriage is one of the best forces to blunt poverty. In married couple households only one child in 10 grows up in poverty, while almost half do in single-mother households.

    I don’t want to quote more of the column because of Fair Use concerns but I encourage everyone to read it.

    When the SSI program was created in 1974 (thank you, Richard Nixon) the idea was to replace a patchwork of federal-state programs with one program that would cover all claimants and have uniform eligibility criteria. At some point children, under age 18, were made eligible for payments as disabled

    “if the individual has a medically determinable impairment or combination of impairments that causes marked or severe functional limitation(s), and can be expected to result in death, or has lasted or can be expected to last for a continuous period of not less than 12 months.”

    Enter ADHD, stage left. I don’t want to engage in a discourse on the controversies about the existence and prevalence of ADHD other than to make this points. ADHD has no clinical diagnosis, that is, there is no physical test you can conduct on a patient that can diagnose ADHD. Rather it is an observational diagnosis governed by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, version IV (DSM IV).

    This subdivision is based on presence of at least six out of nine long-term maladaptive symptoms (lasting at least 6 months) of either inattention, hyperactivity–impulsivity, or both. Thus, a child who is diagnosed with the inattention subtype may also show signs of hyperactivity–impulsivity, and vice-versa. To be considered, the symptoms must have appeared before the age of 6, manifest in more than one environment (e.g. at home and at school or work), and not be better explained by another mental disorder.

    Two points need to be kept in mind here. People who live in long term poverty aren’t stupid. They may have made some profoundly stupid choices that have resulted in poverty but they aren’t stupid. The second is, as someone once said; there is a difference between being broke and being in poverty. Broke is the state of your bank account. Poverty is a state of the soul. When you combine financial incentives with an impoverished soul you cant reasonably be surprised when bad things happen.

    A correspondent in Ben Domenech’s indispensable The Transom (if you aren’t subscribing to it you are missing tons of stuff) describes the process this way:

    “A typical anecdote from any given day would go like this: A parent would arrive for the appointment, late, of course, leaving only 10 minutes to talk to the child. The child would have a small television or video game, something distracting, and wouldn’t be paying attention. The child would be asked to put it away, and the child would talk back. The parent would do nothing. Finally, the parent would be asked to take away the thing. The parent would get defensive and say they already know what the problem is, the kid has ADHD, evidenced by the child’s inability to listen to the parent, and proven to the doctor by the child’s inability to pay attention. Incredulous, the doctor would realize that the parent was raising this child alone, and so the child was frequently acting out, and that the easiest way for the parent to get the kid to behave was to put the kid on Ritalin. For the parent, it had the additional benefit of allowing her to get a check in the mail every month.

    [Excerpt]

    Read more:
    The Department of Illiteracy | RedState
     
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  2. Mad Scientist
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    Mad Scientist Deplorable Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

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    My sister put her son on Ritalin, now he's a Felon. That's how it works.

    Teachers wanted to put my oldest son on all manner of drugs because he had difficulty paying attention in class (just like his dad did). I refused and changed his schools on more than one occasion.

    He turned out just fine.
     
  3. beretta304
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    beretta304 BANNED

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    The Department of Illiteracy


    a/ka/ The Oval Office?
     
  4. Mad Scientist
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    Mad Scientist Deplorable Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

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    I watched a 4+ hour PBS documentary yesterday on Andy Warhol and all I could think of was "My gosh, If this guy was in school today the Administrators would have forcefully drugged him out of all of his creativity".
     
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