From across the political and ideological spectrum, there is now almost universal acknowledgement that the American social welfare system has been a failure. Since the start of the War on Poverty in 1965, the United States has spent trillions trying to ease the plight of the poor. What we have received for that massive investment is-primarily- more poverty.

Our welfare system is unfair to everyone: to taxpayers, who must pick up the bill for failed programs; to society, whose mediating institutions of community, church, and family are increasingly pushed aside; and most of all to the poor themselves, who are trapped in a system that destroys opportunity for them and hope for their children.

More on Welfare

Commentary

A Universal Basic Income That Makes It Feasible to Avoid Working Is Immoral

By Swaminathan S. Anklesaria Aiyar. Times of India. July 18, 2017.

Is an Allowance for All Americans as Crazy as It Sounds?

By Michael D. Tanner. The Hill (Online). June 2, 2017.

Universal Basic Income — Disease or Cure?

By Vanessa Brown Calder. Cayman Financial Review. April 26, 2017.

Cato Studies

The Work versus Welfare Trade-Off: Europe

By Michael D. Tanner and Charles Hughes. Policy Analysis No. 779. August 24, 2015.

The Pros and Cons of a Guaranteed National Income

By Michael D. Tanner. Policy Analysis No. 773. May 12, 2015.

War on Poverty Turns 50: Are We Winning Yet?

By Michael D. Tanner and Charles Hughes. Policy Analysis No. 761. October 20, 2014.

Articles

Liberty, Responsibility, and Philanthropy: Individual Responsibility in a Free Society

Roger Pilon. Contemporary Philosophy. Vol. 27. No. 5. 1995.

Cato Reviews & Journals

The War on Consumer Surplus

Pierre Lemieux. Regulation. Spring 2017.

41. Poverty and Welfare

Cato Handbook for Policymakers. Cato Handbook for Policymakers, 8th Edition (2017).

39. Medicaid and the State Children’s Health Insurance Program

Cato Handbook for Policymakers. Cato Handbook for Policymakers, 8th Edition (2017).

Events

The Welfare of Nations

Featuring James Bartholomew, Will Wilkinson, Sven R. Larson, & Michael D. Tanner. January 26, 2017. Book Forum.

In Our Hands: A Plan to Replace the Welfare State and Raising the Floor: How a Universal Basic Income Can Renew our Economy and Rebuild the American Dream

Featuring Michael D. Tanner. October 4, 2016. Book Forum.

Welfare Reform Turns 20: Looking Back, Going Forward

Featuring Michael D. Tanner. August 22, 2016. Conference.

Downsizing the Federal Government

Food Subsidies

By Chris Edwards. May 2016.

Employment and Training Programs: Ineffective and Unneeded

By Chris Edwards and Daniel Murphy. June 2011.

Failures of the Unemployment Insurance System

By Chris Edwards and George C. Leef. June 2011.