Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Can't We Stop These Foolish Games?

Okay, right now over twelve million of our fellow citizens are still suffering in the wake of the lashing taken from Hurricane Irene. They need money for even obtaining basic necessities, and getting some kind of shelter, not to mention rebuilding of their devastated homes. One thing they don't need is to be made the hostages of political brinkmanship such as we saw in the debt ceiling fracas.

Fortunately for now, the victims of the hurricane disaster, as well as those from the earlier tornadoes, will be able to exhale. This is after a last minute deal was struck and as Dem Sen. Mary Landrieu put it, thanking party leaders for "helping the Democratic Party find the backbone it needed to fight and win this debate". That was, to deliver $3.6 billion in disaster aid without painful, offsetting spending cuts.

But why must the Dems always search for backbones in such altercations with Repukes? Why can't they be ready for fight ALL the time? Know thy enemy, after all.

In truth it never should have to come to this. In times past, when an area of the country was devastated by flood, hurricanes or tornadoes, delivery of financial assistance was assumed and unquestioned. Every American then, such as in the wake of the Category 4 Hurricane Charley that demolished part of parents' home in 2004, understood his or her community could be next.

If then communities went down the selfish, self-protective path of "Each community on its own" - then we'd surely be left with a miasma of wrecked townships, towns and cities. Because no one community would have the resources available to get back on its own. Hence the need for a federal assist.

Now, in these hyper-austerity times, that assistance has come grudgingly. Every small request for help is now met with the embedded mentality of 'Show me what you'll cut first!' Yet NO one, not one of these spending cut mavens seeks or demands the military or Pentagon offset its bloated budgets. This is an abnormality that can no longer be tolerated, and massive populist protests and demands must insist the militarists pay their fair share too. They can't continue to use the national credit card for their useless wars, occupations and expensive toys.

The good news then? House Reeps have postponed their demand over whether billions in disaaster relief must be made up for elsewhere in the budget (Hint, Reepies: Take it from the Pentagon!) The bad news is that in a matter of weeks the battles will renew, especially as the Tea Party-driven 'pukes are still insisting on mammoth spending cuts this fall. Never mind we're in an extreme, low aggregate demand fiscal environment, which essentially begs for government stimulus. The Teepees would rather drive us permanently into a depression, and blame it on Obama.

Again, it's sad to see what this country has come to. From a time when we were all in this together, to a harsh present where the byword is "Every man for himself and the Devil take the hindmost".

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