Wednesday, January 11, 2012

When a "Cut" is Really an Increase



Credit to PBS, here.  The relevant segment is at 1:17 and is short.

Last week (5 Jan 2012) at the Pentagon, President Obama announced plans to restructure our defense spending.  I've been all over the usual news sources but somehow this quote, straight out of the mouth of the President, did NOT become front page news.

I found it via Corrente, who lead me thru Steve Clemons (who, by the way, thinks Obama should dredge up former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld to oversee the cuts to the military), and ultimately to the PBS clip above.  Here's the transcript of the quote I want to highlight:

BARACK OBAMA: Over the next 10 years, the growth in the defense budget will slow, but the fact of the matter is this. It will still grow. In fact, the defense budget will still be larger than it was toward the end of the Bush administration. And I firmly believe, and I think the American people understand that we can keep our military strong and our nation secure with a defense budget that continues to be larger than roughly the next 10 countries combined.

Let me repeat that quote, lest you missed it, with highlighting:

BARACK OBAMA: Over the next 10 years, the growth in the defense budget will slow, but the fact of the matter is this. It will still grow. In fact, the defense budget will still be larger than it was toward the end of the Bush administration. And I firmly believe, and I think the American people understand that we can keep our military strong and our nation secure with a defense budget that continues to be larger than roughly the next 10 countries combined.


In a sane world, people all over the country would have been driven to torches and pitchforks, demanding his ouster.  You want to plus up the Pentagon and call it cutting?  And with a straight face applaud the fact that the U.S. spends more than the next 10 countries combined, and act like that's somehow a desirable statistic?  Seriously?  When children in this country are going to bed hungry?

According to CNN, here in the U.S. some 22% of U.S. children are in poverty according to the government's own statistics. 

More children in poverty: The poverty rate for children under age 18 increased to 22% in 2010, meaning more than 1 in 5 children in America are living in poverty.
 
The nation's poverty rate rose to 15.1% in 2010, its highest level since 1993. In 2009, 14.3% of people in America were living in poverty.

About 46.2 million people are now considered in poverty, 2.6 million more than last year.

The government defines the poverty line as income of $22,314 a year for a family of four and $11,139 for an individual. The Office of Management and Budget updates the poverty line each year to account for inflation.



For. The. Children.  I guess not.

 

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