The Obama Administration has a one-size-fits-all solution for our nation's problems: put more people on welfare!
We've just seen moves like running radio soap operas to encourage people to sign up for food stamps and claiming the right to waive welfare's work requirements.
But that's just the tip of the iceberg!
The federal government actually runs 126 separate anti-poverty programs. They're managed by 13 different agencies.
We use the word "welfare" to describe money that goes to needy people. But the government's war on poverty is a whole lot bigger. And it's rife with waste and redundancy.
The federal government runs 33 different housing programs: 21 programs to provide food, eight healthcare programs, 27 cash or general assistance programs. It's hard to find a government department that doesn't run an anti-poverty program. All this adds up -- and this is just the federal government.
If you also include state and local spending, the government will spend nearly a trillion dollars this year fighting poverty. That's almost the size of the national deficit this year.
Now let me be clear, I don't object to poor people getting help. My problem is a government throwing money at programs that clearly aren't working. Consider this: All this welfare spending adds up to $20,610 for every poor man, woman and child in the country.
For a poor family of three, that's nearly $62,000 dollars. The poverty line for that family is just $18,500. With this kind of spending, poverty should be wiped out - instead it's growing.
Today, one in seven Americans is living in poverty. The most in almost two decades. All the while spending is soaring.
And, welfare spending for the last four decades -- adjusted for inflation? Up, up, up. How can we spend all this money, and see so little progress?
Instead of pushing this line higher and higher, and expanding the welfare state, we should be stopping the taxes and bloated regulations that hold back economic growth and job creation. People need work, not handouts.
Unfortunately the only solution the president sees is throwing more money at the problem. More government, instead of less. More dependency instead of empowerment.
Instead of going forward, we're going in circles.
Gerri Willis is the host of "The Willis Report" (6 & 9PM/ET), a primetime program that covers the leading financial and political stories of the day and their impact on consumers. Click here to see more from Gerri Willis.