The great Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has decided in its infinite wisdom to completely eliminate their General Assistance program for anyone who isn’t currently pregnant, has kids, or is blind. This means around 68,000 people living in Pennsylvania have been forcibly fucked out of a meager $205 a month safety net because Governor Corbett and the Republican-controlled House and Senate felt that a $150 million program – less than 1 percent of the entire $27.5 billion Pennsylvania budget – was simply too expensive to maintain.
Now, I know what some of you may say at this point: “Good! fuck those lazy assholes that were getting Welfare. I work for a living and so should they! Maybe they’ll get off their asses now and actually contribute something to this society!” Well, let me save you some time and energy right now and tell you to get the fuck out of my face and never speak to me again, because my fiancée is one of those 68,000 people that are being impacted by the discontinuation of this program.
I’m serious: you can go get fucked if you think this new budget is a step in the right direction. Those who received GA are almost exclusively people who have had to put their lives back together after having it dismantled by mental illness or after surviving domestic violence, or face homelessness. For many, this is the only cash assistance they get from the state as they wait for their permanent disability cases to be heard and resolved by the Social Security Administration – a process which can take as long as eighteen months from application to decision. You can’t find a more disenfranchised group of people in the state than those who have mental or physical disabilities that prevent them from being able to work, and you decide that the $205 a month you’re giving them is just “too much to spend” on people that have nowhere else to turn to? Yeah, you’re a cunt.
I want you to stand here and say that my fiancée doesn’t deserve $205 to help towards her living expenses. Go ahead, say that right to my face. I want to watch your expression when I tell you what she’s been through in the past and what she goes through every day that prevents her from working a 9-to-5 job down at the local Taco Hole stuffing Meef Chewbaccas with Cheez Whiz for minimum wage. I want to hear you tell her that that it’s just tough noogies that she’s deaf, has fibromyalgia, polycystic ovaries, and has to get regular steroid shots in her back and neck to alleviate the crippling pain from having spent about 8 hours a day hunched over in a ball in a fucking closet for 6 months straight because her ex-husband mentally and physically abused the ever-loving shit out of her. Go on, tell me she hasn’t earned $205 fucking dollars a month while we wait for the Disability judges to get their heads out of their asses and allow her access to the cash she fucking deserves, having paid into Social Security with every paycheck she’s ever earned. Go ahead; I’m listening.
Thank the Flying Spaghetti Monster that her medical benefits aren’t being touched by this abomination. The only way she gets any kind of respite from all of her physical and mental illnesses is through the absolutely stellar care she gets from doctors; of course, since I’m her primary caregiver I’m the one who makes sure she keeps up with her doctor’s appointments since she can’t drive. Too bad we don’t have access to that $205 any more, considering how the primary use of that cash was to keep the gas tank topped up so we can hit all these doctor’s offices – my freelancing pays the rent, but I can’t work full time and make sure she gets the care that she needs, so the loss of that cash is going to make things much harder for us starting August 1st, when the program officially ends. The flaming bags of dogshit that Pennsylvania calls elected state officials wanted to discontinue the benefits as of yesterday, but a committed minority of actual human beings managed to get the bill amended so that people have at least a month to find alternative sources of funding.
This move will most likely cause massive cost increases in other areas in Pennsylvania, of course. People are already predicting that organizations like the United Way and the Salvation Army are going to get slammed hard by this, and unemployment and Social Security offices will most likely get swamped as well – especially in Philadelphia, where around half of those 68,000 poor abandoned souls live. My advice to anyone out there who’s been dragging their heels on applying for disability (or feeling disheartened after getting denied) is to get your ass in gear: while a Federal holiday pretty much fucks everything up for you this week, use the next few days to prepare to apply, appeal, or re-apply early next week so you can beat the rush.
Oh, wait – I haven’t even told you the best part about this abortion of a budget, though. Get this: the new budget should be running at about a $400 million surplus by the end of 2013, according to most estimates. You’re telling me you couldn’t keep a $150 million program (actually, it only costs Pennsylvania around $126 million after Federal reimbursement) when you’ve got $400 fucking million just sitting around generating interest? Oh, but you’re including an unlimited tax credit to petrochemical companies that want to suck every last scrap of natural gas out of the ground instead? Wow, this just gets better and better, doesn’t it?
I have nothing but the utmost contempt for every single fucking douchebag in Harrisburg who voted for or personally supported House Bill No. 1261 of the Pennsylvania General Assembly for cutting off a lifeline to people who have had horrible shit happen to them but are trying their god damned hardest to put their lives back together. Thanks for making it that much fucking harder, you shitsticks; you can all go choke on a million dicks. Oh, and thanks for voting to increase Senatorial salaries by $300,000 and House member salaries by $1.4 million, you greedy, out-of-touch, selfish cuntgrabbing twatwaffles. Fuck you and anyone who agrees with you.