And as to the military budget itself . . . We're going to spend something on defense, and whatever that sum is, it will be beyond any one person's comprehension. Nor is that a fact that is the least subject to change, regardless how any of us feels or regardless what any of us does. That as well is a fact. For now and into the foreseeable future all of us need to deal with it. Somehow. But wishing or pretending it were otherwise is, once again, an unrealistic, completely foolish waste of time. Contrary to Frank Sinatra's ditty, that ram ain't gonna knock down that dam, no matter his "high hopes."
Not you or me, but the House and Senate could raise the taxes on those making more than $250,000 to what they were prior to the Bush/GOP tax cuts that favored them. And that would help. But only. It would mitigate the looming Medicare catastrophe. It would not make it go away. That's because of the rate it is growing and the influx of the world's hugest demographic bubble into the system. Even that, because of Republican mule-minded, stubborn obstructionism in the Senate, faces an almost unsurmountable hurdle. (Example: Sen Jim DeMint of SC placed a hold on Obama's nominee to head the Transportation Safety Administration because DeMint thought the nominee might not block unionization of the agency; that while he was scorching the administration over the Christmas pants bomber. And right this minute, Richard Shelby, Republican of Alabama, has put a hold on more than 70 of Obama's department head nominees; holding out for an Alabama-based tanker contract and a counter-terrorism center.) Does anyone actually think Republicans will be less intransigent when it comes to raising the taxes on their base?
While not forever, but right now there are adequate food stores to eliminate world hunger. And right now, there are adequate financial resources to provide every American with both educational opportunity and health care. Were it up to me, I'd parcel things so that no child anywhere went to bed hungry or malnourished. (The mountainous quantity of food that finds its way to the dumpsters behind every restaurant in the US, and in every home garbage pail, or down every disposal, is itself a shame, a shame that those of us who contribute to that shame should flog ourselves, or be publicly flogged over.) Were it left to me, I'd deal with "extreme prejudice" the father in Turkey who buried his 16-year old daughter alive, because she was looking at boys. Were it left to me, I'd wipe from the face of the earth those in Somalia and the Sudan and Uganda who are responsible for the nine-plus years of the most brutal bloodshed that has left nearly 7,000,000 dead (Talk about Holocaust!), and the terrorizing raping of women. Were it to me . . .
Responsible debate is needed, the operative word being "responsible."
I'm Ed Tubbs. I winter in Palm Springs, California, and I respond only to those with the decency and temerity to leave their real names.
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