It shouldn't really surprise anyone that Barack Obama wants to expand the welfare state. For one thing, it is positively Democrat Dogma that more welfare spending is necessarily a good thing. For another, one cannot deny that, by and large, those who are assisted by various welfare programs tend to be Democrat voters.
On the other hand, we should be looking at the results of such spending before we decide to spend more. Are welfare programs enabling independence, or dependency? Are welfare programs reducing, or increasing, the numbers of those in poverty? In short, are welfare programs succeeding, or are they failing?
The first part of the problem, of course, is defining "success." The federal government tends to view a program as a success when it has many subscribers. The more people who are on a given welfare program, the more "successful" the federal government views it. The problem with this paradigm is that welfare programs should be the opposite. After initial subscriptions, the general growth trend in people using the services should be negative. Every year fewer people should qualify for the program- not more.
The other part of the problem determining if a given welfare program meets the definition of success. If you definition is the federal governments, then they're all succeeding beyond your wildest dreams. Under President Barack Obama, more than 1 in 7 Americans are defined as Living in Poverty; that's the most in nearly twenty years. If, on the other hand, you definition of success is that fewer people need services, and the ones who need them need fewer, it is a miserable failure.
It should be obvious to anyone who wishes to help the poor stop being poor that the modern welfare state is an abject failure. Increased rolls show increased instances. Increased spending indicate increased dependency. If our goal is to assist those who are poor to elevate themselves out of poverty, we're obviously doing something wrong.
Yet, rather than reevaluate the efforts of the federal government, Democrats in general, and Barack Obama in particular, insist that increased spending and enrollment are the answer. Rather than check their theories against the test results of reality, they insist that reality must be wrong. Instead of deciding that something is wrong, and attempting a different tactic, the Democrats propose more of the same, and accuse Conservatives of being inhumane when we disagree.
Yes, Barack Obama is the Food Stamps President. Not because he cares about the poor, but because his party has painted itself into a corner. Any admission that they've been wrong for the last 50 years would set them back, politically speaking, for decades to come. Continuing on the same course dooms generations of Americans to poverty which could be avoided.