By Loribeth Reynolds

Fixing problems that do not exist. Non-sense lawmaking, this is what the current Kansas government does best.

Among a pile of disgusting laws that have been passed by the high-minded right-wingers of this state lies a law that will tighten restrictions on the already strangled poor.

Even though there is no real evidence that the poor misuse their government assistance, HB 2258 has been signed into law, it is a solution for a non-existent problem.

Welfare recipients are almost always portrayed as the big burden for taxpayers. With the approval of this bill it shows that most think of welfare recipients as tattooed, gambling, irresponsible, cruise-takers.

Some people have taken advantage of the welfare system, but it is a critical program for the well being of the needy and their children. It cannot suffer any more cuts.

I think it’s time to start looking at the people who take advantage of the welfare system. I can see a welfare recipient as a sharp-dressed, middle-aged, business oriented, CEO.

The two recipients come from different spectrums within the American economy but both do, believe it or not, receive welfare.

Corporate welfare is the biggest burden on the American taxpayer. Under special tax codes big corporations are allowed to write off expenditures, such as buying a jet for business meetings.

Businesses can even get a tax break from the government for a “business meeting” that involves skiing.

A subsidy-tracking group called “Good Jobs First” highlighted the top 100 corporations that received handouts in 2014.

For example, Boeing tops the list at $13.87 billion. Coming in second was Intel at $5.93 billion. Third place went to Alcoa with $5.72 billion.

Sophisticated accountants can find those special little loopholes that drop billion-dollar corporations’ effective tax rates to zero.

Kansas falls right in the middle when it comes to handouts. It ranks 31st on Good Job First’s list of states in the nation who give big business tax-breaks. In 2014, Kansas had a $788 million subsidy value, and then gave that amount to 1,059 corporations. That’s a little over 50 times the amount of cash assistance handed out last year by the Kansas Department of Children and Families, which roughly totaled $14 million.

It’s pretty sad when a corporation’s tax-breaks are higher than the expenditures of most small countries.

Yet the powers that be want to continually pick on the poor with their mean-spirited legislation. I wonder if the motive to pick on the needy comes from the fact that the poor cannot donate to a campaign fund. It seems politicians keep big businesses interests in mind because they are paid to do so.

Our state’s deficit would not be as huge if we focused on the corporations taking advantage of the welfare system. Imagine what $788 million could do in Kansas.

The numbers don’t lie when you’re deciding who is the biggest burden on taxpayers.

The absurdly called “HOPE” act makes no sense at all.

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