then the economy would really be booming. Or, so implies Patricia Anders, an attorney at the New Mexico Center on Law and Poverty about Medicaid in a front page story in today’s Albuquerque Journal. How else is one to interpret her statement that “Every dollar spent in SNAP (food stamp) benefits actually generates $1.79 in total economic activity.”
Obviously, that is a pretty sweet multiplier — even better than the $1.50 we’re supposedly getting back on film subsidies — so I guess it makes sense to add even more New Mexicans (and Americans) to the program. Of course, this is indeed being done as there has been a concerted effort by the Agriculture Department to expand the program. But, as I have pointed out repeatedly, multipliers are almost entirely bogus and are simply used to prop up bad policy.
Ultimately, while I’d prefer to rely on charity, I can go along with state-run and financed food programs. Unfortunately, advocates like Anders benefit greatly from the status quo and will fight any such fiscal restraint tooth and nail as it is a direct threat to their jobs.