Quite by accident I discovered another USDA nutritional program that is the real deal: http://www.fns.usda.gov/csfp/commodity-supplemental-food-program-csfp This is what should be substituted for SNAP cards and the trash purchased with them. The federal government takes "let them eat cake" literally when it comes to the SNAP folks.
Let's take a look at what the aged (60+) poor are provided with as subsidy items: http://www.fns.usda.gov/sites/default/files/csfp/CSFP-Foods-Available.pdf .
These are foods that the recipient prepares, as in cooks. Is this program costly to the taxpayer compared with the 6.6 billion dollars provided for the 2011 SNAP program? You decide: Congress appropriated 202. 682 million dollars for the Commodity Supplemental Food Program! What´s more, the program isn't even available in all states: Alabama, Connecticut, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Maryland, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Virginia and West Virginia aren't elderly-poor-friendly states. Priorities are sadly misplaced. A local food bank would almost certainly provide a program better suited to the elderly and everyone else, although the subsidized might complain that the gifts come with too much "work" attached. In the days before food stamps and now SNAP cards, however, this was the way "food welfare" worked. Handouts may have been a bitter pill to swallow for the unfortunate who needed to resort to them, but at least they required effort to prepare.
Having just returned from pruning tomato plants with a little unexpected "assistance" from my 2 1/2 year old grandson wielding scissors with an enthusiastic gleam in his eyes, I have little sympathy for the SNAP beneficiaries. Sounds cruel, eh? I'll revise it: I have no sympathy for them. Sadly, too many people are being subsidized in a manner that will only make them more and more dependent upon unsustainable programs that produce a citizenry that is defenseless against hardship.