America’s Welfare State Isn’t Working

A.-Money-Growing-on-TreesPolicy wonks have long debated the extent to which welfare discourages work. Clearly, it can. In very poor countries, where the choice is either to work or to starve, people work long, back-breaking hours growing food. In rich countries, government safety nets limit how far anyone can fall. Yet these nets are hard to design. Welfare states must balance the desire to keep people out of penury with the equally humanitarian desire to not let them drift into lives of indolence and despair…

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