Friday, April 15, 2005

Case Study: Deadbeat Politics in Galesburg, Illinois

This is an extremely lengthy, resource filled article. I advise, if these issues are pertinent to you, to visit the site and read the article in full.

Excerpts below:

Politicians in Galesburg, Illinois think they have a plan to be a “demonstration county” for Illinois child support enforcement. Knox County State's Attorney Paul Mangieri and Judge Harry Bulkeley plan to lock up poor men behind on child support payments from Friday evening until Monday morning.

What a marvelous idea. Make it impossible for poor men to be fathers (so they cannot parent their children), and turn them into workaholics for the state. This is in addition to seizing any and all assets, taking away driver’s, business, and professional licenses so men cannot work or get to work, and inventing child support tables that pretend the father has no living expenses of his own.

Galesburg is a small town of 33,000, surrounded by expanses of cornfields.. Maytag, the largest union employer in the entire area, closed its plant in October, 2002 leaving over 1600 workers unemployed. The jobs were relocated to a Maytag plant in Reynosa, Mexico. The total ripple-through job loss is approximately 4,166 jobs. The impact on the area is devastating, especially because there is no other major employer in the area.

Every divorced father who lost his job in Galesburg as a result of the Maytag closure, but has been unable to find equivalent employment, or has been unable to get his child support modified downward immediately, has become a slave and guarantor to the welfare state and the global economy.

The Galesburg Register-Mail’s recent article “Lack of support” makes my major points for me (as quoted from their article in italics below). Bureaucrats know exactly what they are doing to insulate the state from the welfare problem it created via no-fault divorce, poor economic policy, and trying to end poverty by forcing chain-gang policies on the poor:

Illinois uses a private contractor to enforce child support, but does not provide any equivalent, easily accessible services to the non-custodial parent.

There also is a reluctance to reduce child support orders on the assumption that incomes will eventually improve. But in the meantime arrearages accumulate. According to U.S. census data. only 4 percent of noncustodial fathers who were paying child support under an order received downward adjustment when their earnings felt by more than 15 percent between one year and the next.

Now here is the clincher: Phyllis Schlafly recently pointed out that even our military reservists called into active duty in Iraq are being turned into deadbeat dads. Even they cannot get their child support modified! Missouri is the only state protecting reservists, in a law I conceived and got passed in 1991 when we initiated the first war in Iraq.

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