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March 4, 2011

Quick Quote: Benjamin Franklin on the War on Poverty

I am for doing good to the poor, but I differ in opinion of the means. I think the best way of doing good to the poor, is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it. In my youth I traveled much, and I observed in different countries, that the more public provisions were made for the poor, the less they provided for themselves, and of course became poorer. And, on the contrary, the less was done for them, the more they did for themselves, and became richer.

-- Benjamin Franklin, On the Price of Corn and Management of the Poor, November 1766
Read the rest here.  Franklin appears to be of the opinion that we shouldn’t allow the social “safety net” to become a hammock.

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