Trump Regime

The Trump Regime Wants to Spy on the Disabled

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

Americans who receive Social Security disability benefits for any reason may need to be careful what they post on social media, or perhaps even remain off of social media entirely, if the Trump regime gets their way.

According to the New York Times, the Trump regime has been working on a system to monitor the social media accounts of the disabled. You know, to make sure they really are disabled.

The Trump administration has been quietly working on a proposal to use social media like Facebook and Twitter to help identify people who claim Social Security disability benefits without actually being disabled. If, for example, a person claimed benefits because of a back injury but was shown playing golf in a photograph posted on Facebook, that could be used as evidence that the injury was not disabling.

“There is a little bitty chance that Social Security may be snooping on your Facebook or your Twitter account,” Robert A. Crowe, a lawyer from St. Louis who has represented Social Security disability claimants for more than 40 years, said he cautioned new clients. “You don’t want anything on there that shows you out playing Frisbee.”

Disability comes in many forms and, considering the exact nature of a specific disability, being disabled does not necessarily mean you can't swing a golf club or throw a Frisbee for your dog.

But none of that would matter to the people who would propose a system like this in the first place, of course. The goal is to find something -- anything -- to deny benefits to people. This is comparable to the Trump regimes attacks on Medicaid and food stamps; attacks meant to reduce enrollment through a combination of red tape and intimidation.

  • Aynwrong

    The GOP despises humans.

  • muselet

    The barrel truly has no bottom.

    –alopecia

  • Michael B

    The GOP wants to kill me.

    • Christopher Foxx

      Not a new policy.

  • Ceoltoir

    The republicans want to go back to the days when charity only went to the “deserving poor” with the catch being that the managers of the charity could always find some kind of fault and no one who was poor was ever really deserving of aid. It worked great for the managers who pocketed the salary they paid themselves to manage the charity. The republicans also want to bring back tax farming and the Comstock Vice Laws.

  • katanahamon

    I waited over three years and finally had my disability hearing last month. Ppl that go through this are subjected to well, I’ll be honest, I tried before to comment and it just went on and on, I had to delete it. “Spying” on disability folks is such a terrific example of the Repubs hypocrisy and cruelty, and utter disregard for their true responsibilities of being public servants. Yeah, you may see a disabled person buying food, or even trying to do a lawn chore of some kind. How much extra morphine does it take for you to do these things? How many days of extra drugs, ice packs and keeping your eyes closed due to the pain of the following migraine from any physical activity do you think it takes to recover? Did the spies get any of that on camera?

    There will always be bad actors trying to scam their way through life. Don’t punish the disabled because of them. Next time you see a disabled license plate, take a sec and try to determine what your feeling was..was it “let me get a look at the driver..oh, they look fine, another scammer!”..or was it “huh, I wonder how many years of submitting overwhelming amounts of medical evidence and suffering did it take before a judge signed off on granting this person a very small monthly benefit? How was their career destroyed? Do they even have a single person to help them?” You know, I had a work colleague come up to me in a grocery store, they said “well, you look well enough to go shopping.” Implying of course, I’m not disabled. This was from someone I always thought was nice, part of an alleged work family I was a part of. I simply asked how much extra morphine, oxycodone and muscle relaxant it took them to go to the store.

    Our society believes that bad things only happen to other people. Well, I can tell you..that’s 100% percent true, right up until the moment it happens to you.

    • Draxiar

      You touched on a realism that I’ve been saying for years. There will always be people that try to game the system. I have a relative that taught his kids to do game the system and it pisses me right the hell off because I know it’s bullshit. It pisses me off because I know he wasn’t raised that way. Now, that one example is hardly a reason to collapse the system or paint all disabled people as being as apathetic. It’s a classic example of assuming one bad apple has spoiled the bunch. I can almost guarantee you that the system abusers are a drastic minority compared to the legitimate users.

      • The problem is that Republicans know that some small number of people game the system and they’d rather burn down the whole system rather than let even one person scam the country.

        • Christopher Foxx

          No, they’re fine with letting people scam the country. As long as they have white skin and money.

  • Badgerite

    I’m guessing they will spend more money on the official ‘watchers’ then on benefits paid out to disabled claimants.
    Just guessing. And I suppose they will “privatize” so the government pays through the nose like the for profit prison system.

  • gescove

    Good thing this wasn’t in place when Cadet Bones Spurs was dodging the draft during the Vietnam war.

    • katanahamon

      Like farm subsidies for Repubs whose farms depend on undocumented labor and agreements with ICE not to raid them, it’s just another example of the double standard that Repubs aren’t subject to standards of morality, but are allowed to dictate them. It’s ok to cheat, lie, steal, embezzle, never pay tax, pay off porn stars for sex, get abortions for your indiscretions while eliminating them for anyone else, etc. as long as you are a Republican.

      • muselet

        IOKIYAR.

        –alopecia

  • simpfan

    Party of small government, ladies and gentlemen!