A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from January 28, 2011
“A safety net should be a trampoline as opposed to a hammock”

“We want to make the safety net a trampoline as opposed to a hammock,” said Massachusetts Governor William Weld in July 1991. The “safety net” and “hammock” imagery—sometimes including the “trampoline”—has been much-used by politicians (primarily Republicans).

In 1981, newspaper reports about West Germany’s “safety net” mentioned that it had become a “hammock” for too many West Germans. Businessman and politician Peter G. Peterson wrote in the January 17, 1982 New York Time Magazine that “the ‘safety net’ is in fact a well-padded hammock for a collection of middle-class interest groups.” The terms “social security ‘safety net’” and “padded hammock” and “trampoline” and “springboard” appeared in a 1984 book.


30 July 1981, Los Angeles (CA) Times, “Bonn’s Costly Welfare Programs Under Fire as Economy Tightens” by Harry Trimborn, pt. IV, pg. F1:
They say the safety net has be come a hammock for more and more West Germans and point to what they consider to be examples of abuse of well-intentioned…

17 January 1982, New York (NY) Times, “No More Free Lunch for the Middle Class” by Peter G. Peterson, pg. SM56:
What we have then is a safety net for politicians who are unwilling to ask from the broad middle class an explicit contribution to budgetary control and economic revival. Or, we might say, the “safety net” is in fact a well-padded hammock for a collection of middle-class interest groups. Safety-net programs, adjusted fully for inflation and rich in lobbying support, have grown at 15 percent a year for more than a decade—far faster for far longer than any other element of the budget.

18 December 1982, New York (NY) Times, “A Cold Hard Safety Net” by Russell Baker, pg. 27:
His (President Ronald Reagan—ed.) famous “safety net” would see to that, he promised. It was a restful idea, the safety net. It suggested lying in a gentle hammock, secure until the great engines of capitalism recalled everyone to work.

Google Books
Christians in the Crisis;
Toward responsible citizenship

By Gerald Vandezande
Toronto: Anglican Book Center
1984
Pg. 79:
“The social security ‘safety net,’ backed by a host of caring communities, would become a trampoline or springboard instead of a trap or hammock.”

Google News Archive
12 October 1984, Washington (PA) Observer-Reporter, “Presidential Candidates Still Not Addressing Social Security Crisis” by Louis Rukeyser, pg. A6, col. 5:
This conceptual switch, from a safety net to a padded hammock, may have seemed plausible when there were relatively few in retirement and relatively many at work.

New York (NY) Times
Maastricht Journal; The Dutch Forget the Work Ethic and Call In Sick
By MARLISE SIMONS, Special to The New York Times
Published: October 6, 1990
(...)
‘’Our welfare state was meant to provide a safety net, but it has turned into a hammock,’’ said Johan Dalm, personnel manager at a large factory. ‘’Now we have to find a way to turn it into a trampoline.’’

11 July 1991, Boston (MA) Globe, “After vetoes, Weld signs budget $12.99b plan hailed as spare, balanced” by Frank Phillips and Frederic M. Biddle:
“We want to make the safety net a trampoline as opposed to a hammock,” Weld said, drawing a laugh for his imagery from staff and reporters at the news conference.
(Massachusetts Governor William Weld—ed.)

Baltimore (MD) Sun
That safety net is really a hammock
January 13, 1993|By Mona Charen
(...)
That one in 10 Americans accepts food stamps is not proof that hunger is rampant. It is proof that the advocates have been successful in creating not a safety net, but a hammock.

22 December 1995, Doylestown (PA) Record, “Will aid checks keep on coming?” by Jodi Spiegel Arthur, pg. 1, col. 2:
The 245-178 vote was msotly along party lines in the GOP-dominated House, which made welfare reform a part of its “Contract With America.” Republicans James C. Greenwood of Bucks County and Jon Fox of Montgomery County voted for it.

“The safety net should not be allowed to become a hammock. It should become a trampoline for independence,” Fox said.

12 October 1999, Duluth (MN) News-Tribune, “Ventura stresses self-sufficiency: Second phase pf big plan introduced,” pg. 3B:
In releasing “Self-Sufficient People,” the second phase of his four-part Big Plan, Gov. Jesse Ventura said Monday he wants government to lead by example and be a safety net rather than a hammock.

San Diego (CA) Union-Tribune
RUBEN NAVARRETTE JR. 
THE UNION-TRIBUNE
A safety net becomes a hammock
April 20, 2008
(...)
These parents are trying to be supportive, but they’re confiding to friends that they’re getting worried and impatient and frustrated. They’re worried that their safety net has become a hammock. They’re impatient that their kids can’t settle on a profession. And they’re frustrated at having to push their kids into the work force when they should be planning their own retirement.

Fox Business - John Stossel’s Take
June 15, 2010 03:32 PM UTC
by John Stossel
Safety Net Becomes a Hammock
(...)
I thought that a “safety net” is something used to catch someone when he is falling. Not half a year after he fell. By that point he has been slowly and safely lowered to the ground. It’s his turn to stand up.

CBS News - Political Hotsheet
January 25, 2011 9:03 PM
GOP State of the Union Response: Full Paul Ryan Text
Posted by CBSNews.com staff
(...)
We are at a moment, where if government’s growth is left unchecked and unchallenged, America’s best century will be considered our past century. This is a future in which we will transform our social safety net into a hammock, which lulls able-bodied people into lives of complacency and dependency.

No More Mister Nice Blog
Thursday, January 27, 2011
OMIGOD! OBAMA IS THE ONLY POLITICAL PLAGIARIST EVER!!!1!1!!!
(...)
Oh, but first one more: You know that Paul Ryan line about not letting the social safety net become a hammock? That was stolen from John Stossel! No, it was stolen from former Massachusetts governor William Weld! No, Jesse Ventura! No, Mona Charen! No ...

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityGovernment/Law/Politics/Military • (0) Comments • Friday, January 28, 2011 • Permalink