No, I don't give money back to my boss, but a welfare recipient wouldn't be giving money back to the agency sending out welfare checks. Their money could go to the Defense Department or the FDA or EPA...maybe to pay an IRS worker? We can THINK of it THAT way! Yet another way to think of it is; "all income should be taxed the same."
Slave labor? How do you figure? The government is paying you in benefits, that's not slavery. Now, if my idea were to round up all welfare recipients and put them on a plantation picking cotton, whether they wanted to or not, where they wouldn't draw benefits, but would have all the essentials provided... THAT would be slavery. As for the unmotivated who will be content, we have those now. The difference would be, under my plan, we would actually gain some useful benefit of these people, as they would have to work to get benefits. As it presently stands, they are a complete and total drag on society, contributing absolutely nothing, but still getting paid regularly.That sounds great in theory, however, there are a couple of problems. First, it is ripe for abuse by the government getting little more than slave labor. The second problem is, as you explained, for some they "will have a sense of fulfillment, and pride, as they have now done their share and truly earned their benefits." The unmotivated will be content and consider it a permanent arrangement.
A more equitable arrangement would be for the government to offer training. The whole idea is we don't want the people to feel fulfilled on welfare. We want to motivate them and assist them in acquiring something better and that's accomplished through training.
As for training people, this idea has been tried with some success in Georgia, under the Peach Program. If you are a poor kid who lacks the ability to pay for college, all you have to do is maintain a B average through high school, and the state of Georgia pays full tuition for college. This is paid for by the lottery. But again, the model involves some effort from the recipient, it isn't simply handed out like free candy with no expectation.