10.23-10.30 - American Politics and Social Welfare Policy...

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American Politics and Social Welfare Policy 10.23-10.30 Universalism – who is included and excluded from program? - universal programs (include almost everyone) - targeted programs Policy structure - national - local/parochial Social insurance policies (like Social Security) are primarily universal and national in structure (managed by Social Security Administration) How universal was Social Security at its inception in 1935? - initially, categories of workers, such as tenant farmers, were excluded o also excluded: railroad employees, domestic workers, gov’t employees, the self employed, and others - many think exclusions were partly determined by race; these workers were included in Roosevelt version and taken out by southerner-led committees - effect of exclusions was to exclude approx. a little more than half of African American workers in the 1930s - furthermore, most industrial positions were held by men, thus excluding many women from SS - job exclusions aren’t eliminated until 1950s Despite exclusions, SS may be considered universal because it was not targeted - it works across economic classes, and that is the point: politically, by distributing benefits regardless of income, SS creates broad support for itself 1939: first major amendment to SSA creates widow’s benefits ADC was targeted, parochial program – means tested and locally distributed - target was supposed to be mainly children, but beneficiaries wound up being for ‘undeserving poor’ Along “black belt” (named for social, not people), evidence indicates that ADC was mishandled by local officials to increase benefits during harvesting seasons and decrease them during rest of year One line in ADC bill required that benefits provide for “minimum standard of decency;” southern senators remove this provision in a clear sign of trying to avoid being fair to blacks Targeted and local nature of ADC shows transformation of welfare from paternalist nature to ‘something else’
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Universalism- universal Universalism - targeted Policy structure – national OAI (SS, etc.) Policy structure – local ADC One SS bill passes in 1935, the SSA was given a year and a half to get up and running, and payroll taxes would begin on Jan. 1, 1937 Logic built into SS program makes expansion highly politically plausible - they could increase payroll revenue by simply bringing more workers into workforce - so, social insurance expands and becomes increasingly universal - by 1970, almost everyone is included On the other side, you have growing parochial public assistance
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This note was uploaded on 04/08/2008 for the course POLS American P taught by Professor Lieberman during the Spring '08 term at Columbia.

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10.23-10.30 - American Politics and Social Welfare Policy...

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