Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Screw The Poor To Pay For War

Republicans have a few core beliefs, beliefs they hold sacred above all others, one of those beliefs is "small government".

On the surface an idea like small government doesn't sound that bad, until you realize what exactly Republicans mean by "small government".

A small government means inadequate response to natural disasters, a "small government" means eliminations or cuts to essential social programs for the poor who need it most while giving massive tax relief to the rich who need it least.

During his State of the Union Address the President announced his intention to "stay on track to cut the deficit in half by 2009" but failed to mention that in order to do that he would be cutting or eliminating social programs that are vital to low income families and the elderly.

$400 million or 18 percent to be cut from the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), which aides low income families in paying high utility bills.

Remember how Bush likes to talk about an educated America and "No Child Left Behind"?

$4.9 billion or 8 percent to be cut from education, social service grants, training, and employment services.

$100 million to be cut from Head Start, a program that "serves the child development needs of preschool children (birth through age five) and their low-income families."

Remember how America loves it's children?

$223 million or 4 percent to be cut from the Children’s Health Insurance Program.

Our elderly will also shoulder the burden of Bush's new budget.

$77 billion in funding cuts to Medicaid and Medicare over the next five years, and $280 billion in cuts over the next decade.

$172 million, an astounding 25 percent, to be cut in funding for housing for low-income senior citizens.

Since the poor are taking a hit in the 2008 budget it would be natural to assume the rich would also be negatively impacted by the budget. This is not the case, per usual with any Republicans.

While social programs for the poor will be cut or eliminated, the rich will continue to benefit.

As The Center On Budget And Policy Priorities reports “People with incomes of more than $1 million would get tax cuts averaging $162,000 a year in perpetuity.”

Well, it's nice to know that the rich are getting tax cuts while the poor are getting the ax.

CBPP also reports that "The President says he wants to promote fiscal responsibility and address growing inequality, but his budget fails on both counts. In fact, it would make both problems worse."

"Future generations would foot the bill for the much larger long-term deficits that the President’s extravagant tax cuts would produce. The tax cuts in the budget far exceed proposed reductions in domestic programs."

(CBS reports that "Bush's spending plan would make his first-term tax cuts permanent, at a cost of $1.6 trillion over 10 years.")

"It is important to note that "in the fine print of the budget, the Administration acknowledges that deficits will shoot up not many years after 2012. The President’s budget would make these long-term deficits even larger."

Bush is also seeking 624.6 billion for the Pentagon and an estimated $141.7 billion for Iraq and Afghanistan plus $37.6 billion for refurbishment as reported by the New York Times.

Because Republicans believe in "small government" they see it as far more decent to cut social programs for the elderly and the poor to fund a war rejected by the American people, than to take back the unnecessary tax cuts from the rich.

For anyone looking for an eye opener as to what true Republicans and Bush supporters stand for one only needs to look to the 2008 Budget plan and note the high military spending and huge tax cuts for the rich while the burden of the cost of paying for a war is placed solely on the shoulders of the poor and the elderly.

How it can even be deemed fair or acceptable in a "civilized" society to cut benefits to the poor and give tax cuts to the rich is beyond me, and I have given up on trying to explain it to myself, it can be nothing other than imperialism and greed.

These same Republicans who support tax breaks for the rich and cut funding for social programs for the poor are the same Republicans who refused to raise minimum wage without a new tax cut and are the same Republicans who orchestrated and continue to hold this country hostage in the Iraq War.

It should say something loud and clear to the average American about the values Republicans in this country hold dear, and those values do not include helping the elderly and the poor.

The Republicans model of America and a "small government" means a government that is anti-social to it's own people, a "fend for yourself" and "dog eat dog" world.

A "small government" to a Republican means the government foots the tax bill for the rich and tries to eliminate assistance for the poor.

But a "small government" to Republicans never means they will stay out of your business or adhere to the Constitution for that matter.

Tax cuts do the society absolutely no good when they embroil the society in massive debt while the poor suffer the worst consequences of all.

A society is not truly rich is not truly successful if it has people who live in desperation.

The poor have been offered a cold shoulder rather than a helping hand by all Republicans and specifically by the Bush Administration, who would rather help those who already have the means to help themselves.