Gabrielle Giffords Casts Vote On Broke(n) America

Gabrielle Giffords Casts Vote On Broke(n) America

Washington may have received a temporary respite from its partisan bickering when Representative Gabrielle Giffords appeared on the House floor to cast her vote in an effort to avert a government default, however, politics in America is forever broke(n). The crisis, which has held our nation hostage, not only left a bad taste in the mouths of most everyday Americans but it has tarnished what little credibility lawmakers had left. And for the first time in my life I can honestly say that being Proud To Be An American feels empty and meaningless.

Someone once remarked that "In spite of all the things wrong with America she was still worth fighting for before the whole damn thing went down the drain." Of course that remark was made during another very contentious period in our history - the Viet Nam War Era. A nation was being ripped apart as body counts were conspicuously displayed in the corner of our TV screens while watching the Nightly News.

Lawmakers of the 60's weren't much different than the lawmakers of today. They have always been an elite group of privilege who had the power to send our sons and daughters off to some hell hole in Southeast Asia while theirs were quickly were given exemptions from serving. Then, as now, it was the regular people who were left to bear the true costs of this nation - whether it was measured in human lives or as overburdened taxpayers funding a war that lawmakers and others were profiting from.

And so it goes, the nation again was held hostage on the whims of an elite group on the Hill while everyday people will pay the true costs. Spiraling debt was supposedly the issue on the Hill but never once did we hear a loud clarion call by lawmakers for a reduction in yet another runaway military budget while war rages on three fronts. Instead we get a last minute compromise that will force Americans to give up much more of their safety nets and deny those home-bound veterans with the after war care they not only deserve, but have earned! This is the thanks that military families and veterans will get for supporting another elite group of War Pigs.

And let's not forget something very important here. The very reason Gabrielle Giffords was able to make her triumphant return to a dysfunctional Washington was because she had the exemplary health care that only the privileged can receive off the backs of everyday taxpayers. Those same taxpayers who will soon see theirs slashed.

And what about the deficit? Fuhgeddaboudit!

 

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  • Supposedly, ending the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan was already calculated in.

    The issue may be that with all the infighting over this, Congress did not take care of other business like the FAA Act, and it appears that the politics on that are reduced to the Dems. saying that the airlines should give the money back. If it isn't a crisis with a specified disaster date, it doesn't get attention.

    Of course, we could have the one party Congress that we had in the prior session. Can't tell whether that would have been any better.

  • In reply to jack:

    Unfortunately the military not only has their own dedicated budget but they are also inserted into every other major budget. This is an area that loses transparency very quickly in large part to the NSA and its shadow departments - it is simply an area where politicians on both sides of the aisle do not want to go. There is just too much money to be made.

    Historically any cuts made to the defense budget (proper) just get reinserted into another budget - so it is a wash at best. Lawmakers would rather keep trying to sell us smoke and mirrors instead of looking into the single greatest drain on our economy and since the average person doesn't understand how that works - well, they get away with it.

    One thing is certain as rain, when it comes to certain things in Washington there is more partisanship than you can ever imagine. Too bad those are all contrary to the ideals of good government or the needs of the Average Joe.

  • In reply to Michael Ciric:

    Not sure where you are going with the "other budget" argument.

    If it is anything similar such as Boeing going into the rail car business (another government subsidized sector) because there was a Vietnam peace dividend to spend, that didn't work in about 1976.

    Bringing up the NSA, there is of course a distinction between necessary intelligence to prevent terrorism or the Middle East blowing up in our faces, as opposed to supporting some weapons program because it is in some congressman's district. Guys like Byrne cry about the end of the space shuttle, but it appears that the administration properly decided not to put more money into the 30 year old technology.

  • In reply to jack:

    The Pentagon's budget just isn't limited to "Defense Department" as seen in the Federal Register. Defense funding is also added to budgets not associated with defense. As for the NSA, here is the point on that - we spend enormous sums for their "blank check budget." No one seems to know what the true amount of money spent is and how many hidden assets they have.

    Don't get me wrong Jack, ex-military myself and I am a firm supporter of defense funding, however, there is so much waste and diverted monies going out that it goes beyond the pale. Hell, just forget the needed things like arms and munitions - the amount of food thrown away in a day would stagger your senses. On a more serious side, we have projects with Lockheed Martin, Boeing and many others that stay on the books with a blank check for decades only to be scrapped when that project obsoletes itself because of the constant changes in design and time spent on it. Look - been there done that and it isn't pretty.

    If the Pentagon would spend their allocated money properly and efficiently - I'd be happy. However, they seem to have more slush accounts than the Swiss Financial Institutions.

    As for NASA - I have no problem with its demise per se, however, there is something to say for actual scientific exploration as opposed to Star Wars, you know? The again most people forget that NASA's largest priority was um Military?

  • In reply to Michael Ciric:

    On the accounting, I get what you say, but am not in a position to comment on it factually.

    On your last paragraph, I remember some NASA retrospective that started with Eisenhower saying that he wanted to get a human spy into orbit. Fortunately, today we have sufficient unmanned satellites to do that job. We lived through it, but it is hard to imagine the world without weather satellites, gps, and the like, gps being first a military application.

  • In reply to jack:

    Last Statement first - very true! But remember too that things generally always start out with a military intention before they evolve into commercial endeavors. NASA was no different.

    As for our Military Complex here is a good place to start: http://projects.washingtonpost.com/top-secret-america/

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