Saturday, October 06, 2012

Cooking Big Bird

Mitt the Snit Romney's threat to kill the Corporation for Public Broadcasting isn't a budgetary thing. It's an ideological thing. The CPB is the "lean" in the Federal budget. It's $445 million of  among the best, most efficiently spent money in the budget. Eliminating it to lower the deficit  is like deleting a few text files  to make space on your hard drive.  Many, many of these small (in the federal budget sense) allocations for various uses have direct impact on millions of Americans. No doubt some are  past their usefulness. But you could probably find budget allocations for portosans in there. You go to a federal site, the restrooms are being renovated, no portosans. Why? Wasteful spending.   Mitt used one once, vowed never again.

Don't cut the lean. Everyone knows where the serious fat is: The defense budget. Yes, those $1000 hammers & screwdrivers are still there. & worse, in the forms of multi-billion dollar projects even the Pentagon doesn't want but some powerful Senator does. It's there in the form of privatization of services that turned out to be more costly & wasteful (& perhaps even deadly to us) than letting the notoriously wasteful armed services train their own people, purchase their own materiels, & provide these services "in-house" as they traditionally did in the past. But discuss defense waste & making sensible cuts, & defense hawks (corporate shills & lobbyists, mainly, plus neocon "nation-builders" that gave us the model of freedom, West Iran,  oops I mean Iraq) raise the spectre of mothballed carrier fleets, soldiers equipped with muzzle loading muskets, high tech computers replaced with IBM Selectrics, & the abolishing of the "President's own" Marine Band, the splendid group so versatile it performs Charles Ives music flawlessly (I have the CD). We might as well just raise the white flag & surrender to Afghanistan.

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"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be." Thomas Jefferson

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