By Cassandra Tribe
On Valentine’s Day, President Obama released the fiscal budget for 2012; that following Thursday, he announced plans to radically expand 500 MHz broadband services into
rural areas. It is Marketing and Promotion 101 to understand that the choice of timing of these announcements lets the reception of the news be controlled.
In this case, a decision was made to announce the planned cuts on what can only be termed as a national day of distraction. That alone should be enough to make you sit up and start paying attention.
All of the cuts and freezes, over $400 billion of them, are coming from the lower 10% of the budget. In other words, the part of the National Budget that most effects the states and you and me. Mind you, the mandatory spending for programs such as Social Security has to remain.
The $637 billion for Defense, which is discretionary spending, is not only untouched, but specifically exempted from any future cuts or freezes.
Noise is made about the tremendous savings in war costs that will serve as the Defense savings after the withdrawal of troops from Iraq. Left out of this statement is that several months ago we committed to radically increase our presence in Asia and the surrounding waters.
It would not be a war, but a policing presence that I almost guarantee will surpass Iraq war costs in no short order.
Cutting funding to the states for such programs as health assistance, heating assistance and other social programs hits the poorest and the elderly the hardest.
Cutting this support means that the unemployed, who will be in need of assistance as they wait patiently for the jobs that no one expects to see for another two years; will not have the help to bridge that gap.
More and more people are going to be placed in positions where they need assistance: from food, to shelter to healthcare.
Don’t blame it all on Obama and the Democrats. The Republicans would like to see even more money cut from these programs.
Blame it on the apathy of the nation who doesn’t care enough to be bothered to learn what is going on before it is too late to do anything about it.
Trying to resolve an economy’s debt woes by penalizing its citizens worsens both the society and the economy. Continuing to preserve the divide between the nation and the 3% of people and companies who make a profit off of everyone else’s suffering cannot continue.
Letting the working parts of the country rot while feeding the military machine is not going to do it either.
The only difference between pre-revolution Egypt and us is our Mubaraks remain in the shadows and are never seen. However, you can tell where they are in the dark from the sound of the coins jingling in their pockets.