Giving cash directly to people in extreme poverty has been proven effective again and again, by study after study. But, this solution often provokes visceral reactions in people, as it runs contrary to the values in society—that people should earn their money, and anything else is unfair.
This fetishization of self-reliance, however, is only one part of why people chafe at giving money directly to those in extreme poverty. A more common refrain: They’ll squander the money on booze, cigs, and drugs.
However, it’s just not true. In the study “Cash Transfers and Temptation Goods,” researchers David K. Evans of the World Bank and Anna Popova of Stanford University show this assumption to be false by examining spending on “temptation goods” like alcohol and cigarettes after cash transfers to people in extreme poverty. Their findings showed that when given cash, the consumption of these temptation goods can actually go down.
Why is welfare fine for the likes of Carrier, GM, and Chrysler but not for the Average American?
I don't recall Uncle Sam propping up Circuit City, Blockbuster Video, or Montgomery Ward.