Music of choice:
Queen/David Bowie - Under Pressure
I would like to take a moment to educate somebody, anybody, on the effects and lack of effectiveness of GW's Deficit Reduction Act of 2005. The bill was written in the small hours of the morning and handed over to the Democrats after midnight on 12/18/05. After they got the bill, House Speaker Dennis Hastert invoked "martial law" giving the representatives 45 minutes to debate a 774-page Act. 5 Republicans voted against it, causing Dick Cheney to come fly back from a country he didn't give shit about (Pakistan, for those of you keeping score) to cast the deciding vote on a 50-50 tie. Guess what the final count was? 51-50, the 51 being for the Act. The problem is, the bill slashes $40 billion from social service programs to help fund the $90 billion in tax cuts for the nations wealthy who bring home more than $1 million annually. This, in case you are wondering, will cause a $50 billion INCREASE in the deficit, and here is how it breaks down and how it just might affect you:
A nice $12.7 billion cut, raising the total another $8 billion for American families to pay for education. The way they managed this was not by directly cutting funds, but by removing the variable interest rate on their loan and replacing it with a higher fixed rate, leaving students with an increase debt of more than 30%. Needless to say, none of Bush's friends (and especially his daughters) need financial aid, so why should they care?
A $5 billion budget cut is waiting for you when you report your child's father as a dead-beat dad. This means that there are less resources available to you to help track down fathers who skip out on their child support, leaving an estimated $8 billion in uncollected child support nation wide. This one was so morally wrong that Maine Senator Olympia Snowe, a Republican, opposed the bill because of it.
Congratulations! Instead of hitting Big Pharma and saving $20 billion, They decided to increase Medicaid! Now, instead of paying around $3 for a doctor visit, you could pay up to $100! Plus, medication is going up, double-trouble!
They only decided to cut $343 million from foster kids, so luckily only those without parents will suffer. Now instead of helping Grandparents take custody of their Grandkids, they can either go to a foster home, or be booted out on the street. That was nice of them to be a little generous on this one.
Now the states are required to meet a financial obligation, around $8 billion a year, or be fined $100 million per year they don't meet quota. How is this you ask? Simple, the state has to pay more to help the parents find jobs now that BOTH parents must be employed to receive aid. Oh, they have to work longer hours too. I imagine if they could both find work and work overtime, they wouldn't really need the help, but maybe that only makes sense to me.
Now here's the clincher, the selling point, the "money shot" so to speak; The deficit is expected to raise to $365 billion ($1 billion per day for those of you who can't go to school to figure that out because your elementary school lost it's funding because Iraq needs staplers to help Democracy prevail) and this bill will not lower the deficit 1 fucking cent! The nation's richest will save more than $25 billion (the nations richest being 1% of the population), 3/4 of Americans will not see a fucking dime. And people wonder why I hate Republican's!!!??? How mad can you get before you just give up or shoot someone? I mean seriously, do they even give a shit about anybody but themselves and about anything but money? God dammit I am so mad I can't even type correctly. Fuck Republican's, Fuck Bush, Fuck Cheney, and Fuck anyone that helped them into office.
"Insanity laughs, under pressure we're cracking"
PS - If you are interested, there is a great article written by Tim Dickinson in Rolling Stone's most recent issue #992 January 26, 2006.