Neoliberalism Works

Mickey Kaus Columnist
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Reminder — Welfare Reform’s Success: One reason Michael Bloomberg wasn’t a bad mayor, despite all the self-righteous nannying, is that he had Rober Doar running his welfare department. Doar summarizes his 6-year experience here. His slogan: “If you work, we will help you.” That’s a popular and effective Clintonian/neolib thread that Obama lost (in part by letting long-time enemies of work requirements, Sharon Parrott and Mark Greenberg, run the federal welfare effort under Kathleen Sebelius).  …. After the work-oriented 1996 welfare reform, Doar notes, New York City’s cash welfare caselaod plummeted (from 1.1 million to below 347,000), work by single mothers rose, and child poverty fell (42 percent in 1994, 28.3 percent in 2008). The late, sainted Senator Moynihan, who opposed the ’96 law and predicted dire consequences, turned out to be wrong.**…

P.S.: New mayor Bill de Blasio’s comically on-the-nose replacement for Doar–legal aid activist Steven Banks–makes Mark Greenberg look like Charles Murray.  Banks has already started undoing Doar’s emphasis on work, potentially returning his agency to (in Heather Mac Donald’s words) “its former role as ATM machine to non-working unwed mothers.”


**–Not for the first time …