Obamaphone?

Reply

  #1  
Old 05-21-13, 05:19 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 3,188
Obamaphone?

Your tax dollar at work. A federal program to provide cell phones and internet service for those that can't afford it. All at a cost of $2.2 billion annually.

Obamaphone lady - LINK
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 05-21-13, 05:52 AM
the_tow_guy's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: SW Fla USA
Posts: 11,575
Let's not blame it on BO; afterall, he hasn't been told anything about it by his staff.
 
  #3  
Old 05-21-13, 06:00 AM
lawrosa's Avatar
Super Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 17,607
Wayne.


FYI here is the link to the free phone....

I have to say though I have the Obama phone....LOL. I really do. Actually my younger son uses it....

Touchy subject but I applied for every government program out there. Aint no shame in my game. Until my youngest starts school in Sept, then I can get back to work....

So be nice with comments because I am low income since I was laid off in 2010.... Its hard going from 100k plus a year to the admiral working two part time jobs to make ends meet.... ( Which they dont really meet...)

But I assume there are people that never worked a day in their life so I do get it....



https://www.safelinkwireless.com/Enr...c/NewHome.html
 
  #4  
Old 05-21-13, 07:14 AM
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 428
Hate wasting money all you want (I sure do). But anything that helps the less fortunate have a way to look for jobs is a good thing. Cell phones and land-line phones can be prohibitively expensive, and it's hard to get a job if you cannot provide a callback number.

Sure, many poor people out there will abuse the system and just use the phone to talk to their other assisted living friends. But many rich people out there also enjoy abusing the system and getting tax breaks for Hummers because they meet the definition of farm equipment.

As for the cost; I see old phones using a wireless system that is already established. I would need to see figures to prove that this is really 2.2 billion a year in actual extra cost. My guess it is just an accounting cost, like the volunteer ambulance ride that uses $10 worth of gas but still somehow gets billed $500 to the insurance company.
 
  #5  
Old 05-21-13, 07:16 AM
Gunguy45's Avatar
Super Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: USA
Posts: 21,019
If I remember correctly...this has been going on long before O took office. It started off as the Lifeline program for landlines which was a discount on basic service. Since cellphones and service have become so much more prevalent they were added under the Bush administration.

$2.2B? Drop in the bucket. Though I admit...couple of billion here, couple of billion there...pretty soon yer talking REAL money.
 
  #6  
Old 05-21-13, 01:16 PM
Member
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: United States
Posts: 2,446
You are right Gunguy45 this is old news not that I don't think Obama has wasted money he has and as far as the internet is concerned I think some of that started in the Clinton administration and then Bush added on the cell phones. It started as I remember as a program where people could give away old cell phones and people in bad neighborhoods could still dial 911 even though the phone was deactivated. The idea was that many people couldn't call for emergency services because they couldn't afford any phone.

Safelink by the way is run by Tracfone and I suppose I could get into that program too as I really don't make all that much a year, but for one year of service I only have to pay $99.00 or less if I buy a card from Amazon.com. I rarely use my cell phone anyway so for me the cost is minimal. I don't think though this phone is entirely free and you have to pay something if you go over your minutes but I am not certain of that.
 
  #7  
Old 05-21-13, 01:32 PM
lawrosa's Avatar
Super Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 17,607
I don't think though this phone is entirely free and you have to pay something if you go over your minutes but I am not certain of that.
They give you 250 minutes a month. If you use all the minutes you have to wait until the next month, and 250 minutes is automatically put in. Like clock work. Just need to make one call a month to keep it active. No roll over.

Yes if you run out of minutes you have the option to add more out of pocket.... Its a basic phone too. real cheap... No smart phone...trust me...Ha, ha.

The other plan option is 150 minutes with roll over, and there is another of like 100 minutes with unlimited texting or something...

I took the most minutes.....( Yes it is trac phone.)


I would say the governmant has a deal and buys bulk minutes but I doubt it as I think about it.

Trac phone sees it this way IMO. If it gives away 1 million phones with free minutes, people are bound to expire them before the month is up. Hence more minute purchases that they would not get otherwise..... PROFIT!!!!!
 

Last edited by lawrosa; 05-21-13 at 01:50 PM.
  #8  
Old 05-21-13, 02:31 PM
Member
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: United States
Posts: 2,446
I agree Mike and I wouldn't doubt it that more people will go to pre-paid as it is just cheaper especially if you are only using the phone every once in a while. The main reason for me never going to a contract phone is having to pay $35.00 or more a month for a cell phone and the signals even though I live in a city are not that great at least not where I live. So with paying for the internet and a land line which is essential for us I couldn't justify the extra cost.
 
  #9  
Old 05-21-13, 02:38 PM
lawrosa's Avatar
Super Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 17,607
I use straight talk. Uses att towers. 1000 min, 1000, text, 30 mb data. with tax $32.23 month.

Get at wally world.

I pay online once a month so its not really like prepaid. Although you can but a $30 card and type in the pin to renew. They text reminders when to refill.

My wife has the $45 unlimited because she has a smart phone. Mine is not smart, and I dont need all that crap. I rather be in the garden watching the tomatos grow then to be texting, and surfing everywhere I go.

Prepaid SIM Cards| No Plan Cell Phones | Straight Talk Wireless
 
  #10  
Old 05-21-13, 03:49 PM
chandler's Avatar
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 39,968
As with any government program, there are faults. The main one with the phones is they are given out indiscriminately. It was noted on one of the news programs one drug dealer only used the free phones. Make a few calls, throw it away so it couldn't be traced.

I don't belittle anyone for obtaining assistance where needed. Calling it an Obamaphone is a misnomer, and yelling that "he" gave me a phone like he was a savior, is about as tasteless as water.
 
  #11  
Old 05-21-13, 06:14 PM
Member
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: United States
Posts: 2,446
I agree these government handouts can be bad I hadn't heard that about the drug dealers using free phones but it doesn't surprise me. I am sure they have been throwing away money on prepaid phones for years as no name needs to be associated with it. I don't know what can be done about it as those phones are available almost everywhere.

I agree with your opinion too about calling it an Obamaphone I am really getting tired of things being called Obama this and Obama that like Obamacare for instance.
 
  #12  
Old 05-22-13, 05:59 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 3,188
Hedge - It was the woman in the viral video that called it an Obamaphone. The program has been around for years, way before Obama was elected.

The "Obamaphone" handle got traction from the video and it's now used as an example of a growing welfare state and it's attending abuses. The FTC estimates $400 million of the program's $2.2 billion is spent on fraudulent claims - like the drug dealer
.
From a Washington Post article - "So prevalent is the catchphrase that some telecommunications companies even market the discounted service as an “Obama phone” — and often add a free phone for those who sign up.'
 
  #13  
Old 05-22-13, 11:42 AM
Member
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: United States
Posts: 2,446
I understand how the phrase came about and you are certainly right in saying that there are some abuses of the system I think even more so now than there ever was. I don't know how true it is though that the phone actually has been marketed as an Obama phone at least not on Tracfones website and not on the other website Mike linked to. Like many things in the press though liberal or not things do get twisted around sometimes.

Here though are some articles one from the Washington Times that says that government subsidized phones are available as smart phones which if you don't have an Iphone I have found out are reasonably priced on Amazon.com. Washington Times article Bill to quit 'Obama-phone' giveaway gathers steam - Washington Times . This is from the cell phone industry and is biased in their favor Obama Phone: Urban Legend or Real?.

Funny how the industries website says that a telephone subsidy started during the Clinton administration and the Washington Times website says that the land line subsidy started with the Reagan administration. In any event it did start out as a land line program and then went to cell phones. It may be done away with as a program at least eventually as the Washington Times article said although it was an old article.

Personally I hope the program continues but with more oversight than there is now as after all there are people on fixed incomes, who really can't afford much extra and that includes a phone. It used to be you could find a pay phone almost everywhere and you could call someone relatively cheaply. Then the price went up on pay phones and after that they started to disappear. In bad neighborhoods finding a phone you can use is next to impossible.
 
  #14  
Old 05-22-13, 12:04 PM
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 428
Personally I hope the program continues but with more oversight than there is now as after all there are people on fixed incomes
I still question the actual cost. If it is an old phone that nobody is going to pay for and "minutes" that don't actually cost the cellular companies anything (Granted, those are two large assumptions on my end) then the cost to oversee the program would not be worth it. Why pay someone $25,000 per year to keep $10,000 worth of cell phones out of the hands of people who shouldn't have them?
 
  #15  
Old 05-22-13, 01:50 PM
Member
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: United States
Posts: 2,446
I question the cost too and it is a hard job to try to police these phones and keep them out of a criminals hands. All they really can do is see to it that people actually need a cell phone that is subsidized because they are at the poverty level. Some people at the poverty level though don't actually need this program as they have odd jobs from time to time that would help to pay for prepaid service for a year.
 
  #16  
Old 05-22-13, 02:49 PM
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 4
When I first heard about this I was thinking Banana phone hah.

At first I thought it was actually called obama phone, but it's actually called "Lifeline".

Here are some quotes from the article which I found interesting.

"It provides discounts, averaging $9.25 a month, on phone service for 13.3 million low-income subscribers."

“The program has nearly tripled in size from $800 million in 2009 to $2.2 billion per year in 2012,”

?Obama phones? subsidy program draws new scrutiny on the Hill - Washington Post
 
  #17  
Old 05-22-13, 05:57 PM
lawrosa's Avatar
Super Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 17,607
Yeah..... Read the last line.

Lifeline, however, is not funded by taxes; it subsists on fees that are tacked on to most phone bills. That fund subsidizes a number of programs, which in addition to Lifeline include telecommunications service to rural and remote areas and to schools and libraries.
Hedge????

Some people at the poverty level though don't actually need this program as they have odd jobs from time to time that would help to pay for prepaid service for a year.
Correct... I dont need it...( But I do in a way) Some people????? But its offered and its a way to get my son a phone... Otherwise he would not have one...He is 12... I cant afford a smartphone as other parents give their kids.

But in reality I can cut my loses and do away with my phones and use the obama phone. It will save me 100 a month..... That may be the make me or break me area....

IMO no one should comment unless you have more then $200 a month, like myself, after everthing is paid. (The bills...) That leaves me/you with $50 bucks a week.... ( Family of 4)

Dad I need socks... dad I need shoes... dad...Etc.... Scooter???? $400 plus..... Ugggg!!!!

I would like to see any middle class live off that. ( I thought I was middle class ...Not no more...)

But I could get my kid a phone and not use the obama phone and then have $20 a week left over.

My son is happy thatnks to whoever. Even though its a budget phone he can call me if he is in trouble, or tell me where he is..... Without it I would not be able to keep tabs on him. Without it I could not afford a phone for him.

Am I an abuser????

Anyway ignore me.... Had three of troopers samual adams tonight... Wooooo!!!! ( And I dont drink really...Ha,ha...)
 
  #18  
Old 05-22-13, 06:52 PM
Gunguy45's Avatar
Super Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: USA
Posts: 21,019
Sorry Mike..I know you said to not hate...and I don't. But getting a mostly freebie phone for a 12 y/o is....yes...abusing the program.

I (and you I'm sure) grew up without a cell phone. My step-son didn't get one til 14-15 or so...and that was so he could talk to his Mom from CA when we were in VA.

Fees, taxes...same thing.

End of comments.
 
  #19  
Old 05-22-13, 07:44 PM
lawrosa's Avatar
Super Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 17,607
But getting a mostly freebie phone for a 12 y/o is....yes...abusing the program.
What I do with the phone is my business. How am I abusing it? I am low income and on assistance. Its offered through a program for people like me. So tell me what I am doing wrong? If I was not on assistance the phone would not be offered to me... I am documented...

Your comment don't make sense to me...

I respect all comments on this subject but like I said.. Anyone can comment when they are wealthy, or well off, but I like to hear from others that don't have two nickles to rub together?

Geez, I am also on food stamps and utility assistance. Next I am sure you all may say I am not qualified to accept that. I am one of them and abusing the system.

Please dont stereotype.

I know the haters out there. Remember I am a stay at home dad and the spouse makes 1/3 of what I made in my day...

Ugggg... OK I guess I am done here.

I know you said to not hate...and I don't
You sure????
 
  #20  
Old 05-23-13, 02:31 PM
Member
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: United States
Posts: 2,446
Mike I hope you didn't take my comments the wrong way and I personally don't think you are abusing the system. You like me and many other people out there have health problems and other things going on in your life that is your own business. You need the phone and as I have said in many neighborhoods and not just bad neighborhoods where are you going to find a public phone? Even if you do find a public phone chances are it will not work. Public phones way before cell phones came along were sometimes rigged by crooks so they could make a free phone call and then defaced so no one else could use them. So the telephone companies finally had enough and said we are no longer going to have public phones.

There was a big fuss about it among many different local governments about the lack of public phones being available for many years. There will probably be debates for years about cell phones and they will become obsolete and people will have implants put in their heads so they can communicate. During that time people will wonder what all the fuss was about over cell phones and then they will fuss that they don't have an implant too. Or that they do and they want the thing out. By the way the implant idea came from watching a science fiction show.

I still stick though by my belief that the system is abused but not by everyone there are those who really and truly need that cell phone to keep in touch with loved ones. I know I do on my old prepaid cell phone that I only pay $100.00 or less on each year. One secret that I didn't share though is that this year I didn't pay for my cell phone service at all. Was it a government handout? No it wasn't I did some surveys had Amazon.com gift certificates given to me and bought an air time card that I redeemed on Tracfones website. So I worked for it really hard to get that time so I could keep in touch.
 
  #21  
Old 05-23-13, 02:55 PM
lawrosa's Avatar
Super Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 17,607
I still stick though by my belief that the system is abused but not by everyone there are those who really and truly need that cell phone to keep in touch with loved ones.
Yeah...Just had a bad day yesterday...Sorry....

I use it only to give my son some modern conveniences I otherwise could not afford. You want your kids to have what the other kids have somewhat... Keep up with the Jones'....

Yeah I did not have a phne when I was a kid... No such thing... I assume my kid could do without... Just I feel bad we dont have the luxury's we once had....

I guess I am mad at myself.....

Dont take my posts to heart... Its just trying times for me. I figure if I help people here on this site with plumbing issues, I feel rewarded, and thats good enough for me. You cant buy that....
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes