Last month, Congress passed a bill that would reduce federal spending by $8.6 billion over the next decade, and it's pretty atrocious. You might be saying to yourself: isn't saving money a good thing? Well, you haven't heard about the (not in any way) surprising catch: in order to do so, the bill basically completely fucks over poor people. SHOCKING PLOT TWIST!
As it turns out, though, New York is a huge smartass. Who knew (apart from everyone)? New York, along with Connecticut and Pennsylvania, are using a complicated bit of sleight-of-hand to cause a home-heating subsidy tied to SNAP to trigger additional food aid spending, a move which, if more states follow their lead, would essentially negate the cuts almost entirely. I have to admit, as a resident of the Keystone State, I'm a little surprised Pennsylvania is on this list. After all, there's a reason they call the middle of the state Pennsyltucky, and that the saying goes "Philly in the East, Pittsburgh in the West, Alabama in the middle." While driving across the state from East to West, we once saw a billboard that said "The sun sets, wind dies, coal is forever." Not the most progressive (or brightest) place. Still, the fact that Pennsylvania jumped on this gives me hope that more less solidly-blue states will follow their lead.
The kicker to this is that a report just came out two days ago that indicated that food stamp use would drop dramatically if the minimum wage was raised to $10.10. Wait, if companies are forced to pay their workers a living wage, those workers might be able to afford to live without as much government assistance? DOUBLE SHOCKING PLOT TWIST! NO REALLY, I AM SHOCKED, THIS IS MY SHOCKED FACE.
Jesus, Congress, get it together. You have ONE job.
Image via AP.