Foodstamp Recipients Hit Record, Alongside Record Dow Jones And Record Debt: 20% Of Eligible Americans On EBT

Tyler Durden's picture

Record Dow Jones, record US debt ($16,701,846,937,879.74), and now, once more, record number of Americans on foodstamps. According to the USDA, an all time high of 47,791,966 Americans closed 2012 in possession of the highly desired Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card, managed by who else but JPMorgan. And with a civilian non-institutional population of 244.4 million in December, this means that a record 19.56% of eligible Americans are on Foodstamps.

In December an additional 109,924 Americans became reliant on foodstamps for their poverty-level needs, bringing the total to 47.8 million.

Number of US households on foodstamps: also a record of 23.1 million, with the average monthly benefit of $277.09.

And as a percentage of the total civilian non-institutional population.

Record wealth effect for the 1%, foodstamps for the poorest 20%, and a middle class on the verge of extinction. How is this possible and what happens next? Read Dylan Grice's piece posted earlier for all the answers.

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Mongo's picture

And VIX at it's lowest for a longo time. Spring loaded. Time to run girls & boys! ...

MillionDollarBonus_'s picture

The VIX is plunging once again, to the horror of ZH day trader goons. Greasy ZH day traders are probably the most immoral despicable characters on this site. They sit at home in their pajamas all day, losing their retirement money on S&P short positions, doomer gold stocks and crazy VIX futures strategies with massice cost of carry; screeming at their screens about manipulation every time they lose, and ranting for hourse on Zerohedge and other doomer sites. Meanwhile their relationships with their wives and children are totally falling apart.

camaro68ss's picture

enjoy your rise in the market MDB, the fall will be epic!

redpill's picture

So I ask you, how can any rational person sit and proclaim that we have a legitimate, functioning stock market when it can be hitting record highs at the same food stamp usage does the same?   In what type of world is that even possible, and more importantly, is that a world that people want to live in?

General Decline's picture

Clearly there is a correlation here. We need to double our efforts on distributing food stamps! DOW to 50,000!!

yogibear's picture

The Zimbabwe Federal Reserve economic plan. Bernanke and the Fed can print the market to 50,000 and rice and water distribution trucks when the muppets can't afford the food anymore.

The Heart's picture

Maybe they are going to 3-D Print the rice and water to save big bucks.

WmMcK's picture

They're 3-D printing plastic that just looks like rice.

All clean water is owned by the state and is metered.

Soon in a theatre near you.


TruthInSunshine's picture

SNAP/EBT cards, credit cards [they've only existed or been widely relied upon by average Americans for 30 years or so, lest we forget]/payday loans & Keeping Up With The Kardashians/Monday Night Football/The Real Housewives of [Insert Wasteland City of Empty Lives & Drama For the Sake of Drama Here]/iGadgets are to Amerika what Bread & Circuses/Gladiator Matches were to Rome during its decline.


The Danger of Living on Bread and Circuses

Structural forces are creating some very serious employment headwinds.


Look at the big picture, and you also see how, unlike Rome, whose armies looted the lands they conquered, the underemployed U.S. must borrow money to pay for our bread and circuses. Rome was so rich that it took hundreds of years for the empire to crumble. We’re broke, which accelerates the day of reckoning. Reform of U.S. entitlement spending would buy us time, but wouldn’t fix the employment situation.


On a positive note, this bread-and-circuses economy does offer new opportunities. People who can help make things cheaper will do well. They can use digital technology to build businesses of truly global scale. Lastly, anyone who can satisfy the public’s lust for mind-rotting drivel has a viable career ahead in a growth industry.


Drowning a country in vicarious debauchery may be a lousy way to sustain a civilization. Still, there is something to be said for “Half Pint Brawlers” and its ilk. TV-watching keeps people at home, instead of marching in the streets.

GetZeeGold's picture



No bread lines = no problem


Totally bullish for stawks.

Overfed's picture

I went to Home Despot the other day for some materials for a shed I'm building. OSB, plywood, and fiberglass insulation are up more than 20% just since last summer. Zimbabwe, indeed.

BorisTheBlade's picture

Correlation and causation are kind of two different things. Maybe it takes more and more people to get onto foodstamps to keep DOW at those unsustainable levels. Kind of makes sense since all the funds funelled into stock market represent capital being taken out of the rest of the economy to keep this fantasy of the market going. That's not to say that if the market crashes, the number of recipients won't skyrocket again. This 'economy' is a clusterfucked parody for a nonsense.


mrdenis's picture

My broker now accepts EBT my card for payment on all purchases 

MoneyThangs's picture

Nothing wrong with trading from your house in your pijamas, beats working in a Goldman boiler room anyday, MDB.

The Heart's picture

Greater works are done in one American's organic garden, than are done on Wall Street all day.

No offence to anyone there, or anywhere, but when was the last time you spent a day in your garden of Love?

Follow your heart.

DaveyJones's picture 

Interesting article, interesting comments. The more things change, the more they remain the same. They've never cared about us. Globalization just makes it more obvious

James_Cole's picture


Interesting article, interesting comments."

It's the difference between homogeneity / heterogeneity or cultural hegemony. If your ecology becomes homogeneous you're in trouble and that's what we're seeing worldwide. 

Globalization has taken ineffective systems and instead of working out the kinks over time locally with diverse input the power systems have been combined and the territory expanded, exacerbating the problems similar to TBTF.

IMO need to break down the worldwide TBTF phenomenon and start back up on the local level, local solutions for local problems. 

akak's picture

Agreed.  The hippies of the 1960s were exactly right: "Decentralize, decentralize, decentralize".

I love pointing out to lovers of Obama, and of the statist status-quo more generally, that all of their beloved big government programs such as Obama(Don't)Care inherently centralize authority and power, concentrate it in the hands of an ever-expanding central government, and inherently take power (and freedom) from individuals rather than handing it back to them, or allowing them a choice.

Totentänzerlied's picture

They don't care. In fact, it's exactly what they desire, because they fear freedom (read: liberty, lack of external authority and control). The fear of freedom - it's what fuels all authoritarian, hypercentralized political systems. Ours is no different. Everything they say about helping people, they may or not believe. It doesn't matter, they think the way to help people is to remove their responsibility to/for themselves and replace it with submission to some type of privileged group or entity, who should run the whole of a society and its state. The theocrats and the communists, no less than democrats and republicans, in terms of their psychological motivations and the pyschological dynamics of their politics, have between them not a hair's breadth of difference. It's always about control, the freedom to do as you're told. That's all the sado-masochistic personality - which typifies all authoritarians - understands.

kraschenbern's picture

No, it's not freedom they fear; it's responsibility and potential failure - then facing an uncaring nature.

sun tzu's picture

What do you mean they don't care about you? Pelosi, Reid, and Obama care deeply about you and your bank account

McMolotov's picture

Food stamps are the modern bread lines and soup kitchens, with visibility kept to a minimum. And the fact that the stamps have been replaced by cards is not so much for convenience as it is to remove the stigma most people would have if they had to whip out government coupons at the check-out. It's about building acceptance of the system.

It really is like a giant experiment to see how much the people at the top can steal from everyone else without causing a revolution, and the food stamps thing is probably one of the most important aspects of that agenda. Once they get enough people "hooked" (for lack of a better phrase), they can steal with impunity as they will essentially have "the rabble" (again, for lack of a better phrase) on their side.

Fun times for everyone.

AssFire's picture

Thanks for the tip, I been whipping out my S&H Green Stamps and they look at me like I'm buying porn.

hedgeless_horseman's picture



Food stamps are the modern bread lines and soup kitchens, with visibility kept to a minimum.


Finally, if you can, imagine driving all day, every day, for 31 days. That relentless line of people standing heel-to-toe passes by at 60 miles per hour for an entire month. When you have reached your destination 15,500 miles away, the 47,000,000 people you will have passed is the number of people lining up for a meal every day in America's breadline, also known as food stamps, or SNAP.

...and that is from 2011.

akak's picture

Obviously, none of these people receiving food stamps know how to shop for bargains.

And beside that, adjusting for the rise in the number of people on food stamps in the last five years, nobody is actually on food stamps today anyway.

Bay of Pigs's picture

Kind of like like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz?

"There is no inflation, there is no inflation, there is no inflation..."

WmMcK's picture

Plaid stamps, a liberty bell and a pfeister barter card - don't leave without them.

Always worth a laugh when I show one or more of them.

The Heart's picture

"It's about building acceptance of the system."

The long range plans of the oligarchy of industrial banksters has always been geared towards a global monetary system on line, or into a digital form. After they blow out, literally blow away many countries money systems and peoples by instigating wars using the god money as they have traditionally done, they want a global money system for the few that will be left very much like this EBT card thingy. They want to TRACK AND TRACE every single transaction to TAX and COLLECT information from using the octopussian controls they have over the entire moneterial babylon system. Like the bit-coin racket that can track and trace or even steal what one has at will, it can all be shut down with the proceeds being taken to china where the rest of these elitists have built their run away to bunkers for the coming war with china.

archon's picture

Isn't this wonderful?!  It's an "everybody wins" economy!  Record profits for all the people who have jobs, and record food stamps for people who don't!  It's a win-win, and everyone's happy!

therover's picture

"In what type of world is that even possible"


The BIZZARO world. 

Hohum's picture

Why not?  Why not 15% U-3 unemployment and 20K Dow?  Loose central banking creates inflation.  We have inflation--in assets.

Chump's picture

The average monthly "benefit" is more than my family's monthly grocery budget by over $70.  Many thanks to all you supporters of the welfare state.  May we never meet, for your sake, hear me well.

Clowns on Acid's picture

MDB has been short. His diatribe above is autobiographicxal....

hedgeless_horseman's picture



Chickens are laying like crazy right now, so we have record egg production...

...therefore cheese souffle was on the menu. 

Before you ask, it is not one of our tomatoes, but the red basil and cheese is ours.

francis_sawyer's picture

Fresh [homegrown] tomatoes are tough this time of year... No need 4 apologies... 

css1971's picture

Sun dry em and put them in olive oil.

francis_sawyer's picture

Nope ~ U only want to do that with certain varieties picked straight off the vine... [usually in Jul, Aug, Sep]...


Those look to be regular tomatoes... The 'sundried' ones you'd want to be 'Roma' or 'San Marziano'...

Edit: Looks like the 'joo junkers' are out early... They don't simply JUNK ANY COMMENT that has 'jew' in it... They're also TOMATO experts... [For the record h_h is a 'neutral type'... As such ~ I don't expect him to verify that what I say is correct]...

Buon Appetito!

Hulk's picture

And I'll remind everyone at this time, that the best way to grow tomatoes is to feed them to the chickens and then plant the shit !!! No kidding, you will have tomatoes growing everywhere...

francis_sawyer's picture

LOL ~ [true]


Just so you don't think u need to get fancy... Last year ~ just 4 shits & giggles, I bought some MARTHA STEWART 'San Marziano' seeds... Motherfucking things [Notwithstanding the fact that the seed packet was practically bare], germinated to about a 30% degree... Instead ~ the San Marziano's I simply harvested he seeds from [the year before] were about 80% germination...


Note: I'm not jus trying to grow a vine or two here... I'm talking 200 or so vines ~ so if you're just growing a fucking 'TOPSY TURVY' on your fucking patio ~ you're on your own...

JethroTull's picture

Worked for me this past summer. Had to buy packaged organic chicken shit however. Some day Bernanke Bucks are going to make great compost.


max2205's picture

Mom where did those tomatoes come from.

Why, they came out of those chickens asses

Shitty tomatoes

Global Hunter's picture

you make your own cheese? respect, so much respect for you HH.

Hulk's picture

Cheese is one of the easier things to make, believe it or not !!!

Global Hunter's picture

well I feel like I've made it halfway up shit creek without a paddle.

Hulk's picture

The bottom line, for people here who haven't raised their own animals and grown their own vegetables,

is that its easy, once you know how. And its fun to try and grow healthier food every year, along with figuring out how to minimize the amount of work one needs to put into it...

DaveyJones's picture

Monsanto the Motivator

Ignorance is bliss's picture

Thanks for the link. I have a small garden and want to enlarge it over my entire back yard.