Saturday, October 4, 2014

Singing Your Own Praises for Your Supper

     Here's the latest from the Bizarro World of the Massachusetts Department of Transitional Assistance:
     While I still haven't been able to reach anyone or get my messages answered by this bloated and glacially slow bureaucracy, we got a sheaf of paperwork in the mail today. Apparently, the reason why they'd cut us off with two days' notice was because when we'd re-certified last month, they never sent us paperwork to fill out to enroll in a mandatory job search/training program.
     Now, theoretically, I was also supposed to do this when I was on UI until April 2011. And that's fine. I'm all for people being given the chance to pick themselves up and that the social safety net for working age people should not foster, God help me for using this phrase, "a culture of dependency."
     What I'm critical of is the fact that we'd gotten cut off from our one reliable lifeline, our EBT card, with little notice and no explanation because my incompetent case manager never sent us paperwork for a program we didn't even know existed much less one that was mandatory. We're paying the price for some low level bureaucrat's ineptitude and weren't given a fighting chance to hang on to our benefits.
     This process could take weeks and is still subject to review. Under MA law, the first time you're rejected, you lose your SNAP benefits for three months. The 2nd time, six months. The 3rd time? A whole year. This could last for weeks or even months if they don't like what they see. Essentially, we have to provide evidence of job searches totaling 24 hours or so a month. The paperwork was photocopied with no back to fill out, Barb's first name misspelled and the "brochure" that looked as if it was mimeographed by Stevie Wonder. Seriously, these are the psychopaths I have to deal with on a regular basis.
     About dozen and a half or so kind souls, mostly those making donations of $10-25, have responded to my plea for help but we're far from being out of the woods. Which is where wolves happen to live.
     So, if you'd read the previous post and passed on helping while being able to, you might wish to reconsider this time because I'm plainly dealing with morons in a bureaucracy in which the left hand doesn't know what the right is doing.
     (Note: A slightly expanded version of this can be found on Daily Kos.)


At October 4, 2014 at 6:40 PM, Blogger janette said...


At October 4, 2014 at 6:47 PM, Blogger janette said...

Sorry if this is repetitive but when I read your blog entry I was angry at how incompetence by the government cost you SNAP and as a fellow Balloon Juicer I felt sad for you. Wish I could give more but hopefully my donation will spur on more donations181

At October 5, 2014 at 3:58 PM, Anonymous Guy Basan said...

Perhaps if you had not wasted your precious votes on third party vanity candidates and spoiler campaigns that put the Republican monkeywrenchers into power, you would be living in a state with a smoothly functioning bureaucracy. I can not gloat over your misfortune in that your stupidity has condemned innocent people to excess misery, but perhaps the sting of this unpleasantness might cause you to smarten up.

At October 5, 2014 at 4:48 PM, Blogger jurassicpork said...

I don't see how my vote for Jill Stein two years ago was the root cause of all this since the Democrats are still firmly entrenched in my state and in much of the federal government. In fact, the Democrats of which you seem so inordinately enamored are the ones who'd set up the same dysfunctional system in which we now find ourselves mired.

At October 5, 2014 at 10:14 PM, Anonymous Comrade Rutherford said...

You should move to Vermont where it's so insanely Liberal the bureaucracy falls all over themselves to help you get social services!

BTW, after a poverty-stricken summer I finally got some work, so I sent some bux your way...

At October 6, 2014 at 8:42 AM, Anonymous CC said...

Hey, Guy, you wouldn't be that poster who goes by the name of "Anonymous" over at Jill's blog, would you?

Are you suggesting that the Democrats would have been any better? Well, actually, they would - at getting unpopular legislation passed such as welfare reform, NAFTA, media consolidation, the end of Glass-Steagall. All were Republican wet dreams, but signed into law by a Democrat.

Both parties peddle shit. One just coats it with honey.

At October 6, 2014 at 1:24 PM, Anonymous Syrbal/Labrys said...

Hey, Jurassic? I posted on HerlanderWalking that if you send addresses of anyone giving $25 or more, I will hand make and send a pair of 100% beeswax tapers their way.

Just a little incentive, maybe?


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