watching up with chris hayes, to which i'm kind of addicted. hayes is extremely bright. at any rate, they had the average-person interview with a woman whose family used to make 100k but now subsists on unemployment, food stamps, and student loans. they introduced her with a clip of ryan saying that an economy ("the obama economy") with expanding social programs like those encourages dependency and is "demeaning." we have to create a ladder of opportunity in the private economy so people can take care of themselves. ok our woman on the street starts in with "that is ridiculous!" she portrays the result of the election as a matter literally of life and death to her family. (damn the addition of ryan has really gotten people focused, even if overwrought.) then she says: we hate these programs. we hate the fact that we're dependent on these programs. we have a plan to get off of these programs. really, i have to say, she confirmed ryan's basic point. then the panel is like: of course no one wants to be on these programs. in other words, they are still stigmatized by the left. you know, you might survey people who are recipients of these programs about how they view them, both in general and in detail: what is it like negotiating the bureaucracies that control your benefits? and how vulnerable do you feel to the programs and bureaucrats who run them? how do you feel about yourself as a recipient? this is an odd question: but to what extent do you feel yourself to be fully a citizen of the united states? then we've got to start trying to conceive alternatives. we're frozen in this duality where it's only more or less govt spending.