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Old 03-11-2012, 04:20 AM  
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Drug testing welfare recipients

"In an interview, GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney said he thought people receiving welfare benefits should have to undergo mandatory drug testing. He added that anyone receiving government benefits should also be subjected to mandatory drug testing.

Social Security and Medicare are government benefits, so do the millions of the elderly people have to be drug tested? What about all federal employees, including members of Congress and the Supreme Court? What about all federal contractors?

It is common knowledge that Florida Gov. Rick Scott championed this cause, and Romney agrees with him. Considering Scott originally owned the company that provides the drug testing kits and transferred it to his wife, one has to wonder what was really behind this legislation.

Also, only 2 percent of people receiving welfare benefits tested positive. It has been more costly to the state for reimbursements, but the company still gets paid. Do Mitt Romney?s investments include shares in this company?

Oh that?s right ? it?s a blind trust, and he doesn?t know or have any say in his investments.

So Mr. Romney, do we just drug test the poor or everyone? I think you need to clarify this"
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Old 03-11-2012, 07:11 AM  
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I think it's a good idea. Even as, what some may call (incorrectly) a "liberal", I think it's a good idea. Everyone who receives benefits of any type including SS should be tested. Including myself since I receive VA disability and military retirement. That also includes those in programs subsidized by government funding such as school academic or athletic programs. Contractors, government employees and Congress included. Even the POTUS. Lead by example. Who makes money from testing and how is an altogether separate issue. The testing itself should be done.
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Old 03-11-2012, 09:23 AM  
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Our school district did drug testing last year. They had one positive test for MJ, no other positive results. The money would have been better spent on some of the academic programs they have been forced to cut. In spite of them doubling property taxes over the last five years, the school is still short on money. And the number of houses being sold at delinquent tax sales has exploded. All the new houses are being built out in the rural districts where the tax rate is much lower.
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Old 03-11-2012, 10:16 AM  
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The principal is good, but there is a big flaw in the execution, namely, the cost of drug tests for everyone receiving benefits exceeds (by a couple orders of magnitude) the cost of just paying benefits to drug users.

Furthermore, as has been clearly demonstrated by numerous studies, urinalysis is extremely prone to false positives, especially for heroin.

Furthermore, drug users have dedicated quite a bit of time and energy and had numerous successes in defeating drug tests, rendering them significantly less effective.

All in all, at this time, I think the idea of testing *all* beneficiaries just doesn't make sense. Random and for-cause testing - similar to what private and government employers and the military use for general screening and after on-the-job accidents - would seem to be a better approach. Treat beneficiaries as employees.
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Old 03-11-2012, 11:41 AM  
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Our school district did drug testing last year. They had one positive test for MJ, no other positive results. The money would have been better spent on some of the academic programs they have been forced to cut. In spite of them doubling property taxes over the last five years, the school is still short on money. And the number of houses being sold at delinquent tax sales has exploded. All the new houses are being built out in the rural districts where the tax rate is much lower.
I stand behind my statement. First, testing in schools may well be a deterrent. Second, Foreclosures is an separate issue and you can do a separate thread, or book, on that issue alone. If you are subsidized or receive benefits you should be tested.
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Old 03-11-2012, 12:14 PM  
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These aren't foreclosures. These are houses sold at tax sales because the residents can't pay their taxes. Many of these homes no longer have a mortgage. Most are retirees.
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Old 03-11-2012, 12:35 PM  
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These aren't foreclosures. These are houses sold at tax sales because the residents can't pay their taxes. Many of these homes no longer have a mortgage. Most are retirees.
If the money spent on drug testing was taken out of the property tax for every resident would it really make a difference? My guess is no, those retirees would still lose their homes. That's not an issue only where you live, it's a national issue. Mute point.
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Old 03-11-2012, 01:07 PM  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sideways View Post
I stand behind my statement. First, testing in schools may well be a deterrent. Second, Foreclosures is an separate issue and you can do a separate thread, or book, on that issue alone. If you are subsidized or receive benefits you should be tested.
No, these tax sales are related in that property taxes fund schools in many/most states. Drug testing is *expensive*. $25-$65 just for the initial test and a lot more for false-positive retesting, plus the salaries of everyone doing the testing, facility rental, plus the cost of paying people for sitting in a drug testing facility drinking water instead of doing their jobs...

While I agree with drug testing, mandatory testing does not make sense. Random and for-cause testing makes a lot more sense.
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Old 03-11-2012, 01:15 PM  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sideways View Post
If the money spent on drug testing was taken out of the property tax for every resident would it really make a difference? My guess is no, those retirees would still lose their homes. That's not an issue only where you live, it's a national issue. Mute point.
A waste of money is a waste of money. Dividing that waste among a few thousand people doesn't make it anything but a waste. What's the monetary benefit of catching a drug user via urinalysis who hasn't been caught "for cause"? You're taking someone who can apparently function in society without people thinking they are on drugs, and throwing them under the bus, while putting at risk anyone who has eaten a poppyseed muffin in the past three days. The monetary cost, the liability cost, and the societal cost don't justify the benefits of mandatory, 100% drug testing. Random testing, OK.
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Old 03-14-2012, 11:17 AM  
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I think that drug testing while on unemployment is a good idea. If you are doing things that can inhibit your employability then you should not recieve subsidies to help you get by while unemployed. I don't know what the point of drug testing a little old lady because she gets SS would be. What if she fails? Take away what she "paid into" specifically so she could recieve it? That would be a waste of money.
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