<\body> Stories in America: Republican Priorities

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Republican Priorities

Gotta love fiscal conservatives. This is from Think Progress:
The Senate is expected to approve a nearly $109 billion spending bill today. The legislation provides some useful insight into the priorities of our current Congress.

The bill includes $700 million for the "railroad to nowhere":

The project, which was added to a $106.5 billion emergency defense spending bill in the Senate, would relocate a Gulf Coast rail line inland, to higher ground. Never mind that the hurricane-battered line was just repaired at a cost of at least $250 million. Or that at $700 million, the project championed by Mississippi's two US senators is being called the largest "earmark" ever.

Meanwhile, a paltry $173 million has been appropriated for peacekeeping efforts in Darfur, where violence is "horrendously bad and worsening" according to the U.N.'s top humanitarian official.

After three years of genocide -- 400,000 dead, 2.5 million driven from their homes, razed villages, rape campaigns, and mass starvation -- our government still doesn't get it. So much for "Never Again."

On a positive note, at least the Senate passage of the $173 million today was unanimous. When the funding was voted on in the House, it was opposed by the White House (which wanted even less) and passed by only five votes, 213-208, thanks to strong opposition from conservatives, including House Majority Leader John Boehner (R-OH).

2 Comments:

At 5/03/2006 5:30 PM, Anonymous stupid american said...

Darfur, where is that?

Despite the wall-to-wall coverage of the damage from Hurricane Katrina, nearly one-third of young Americans recently polled couldn't locate Louisiana on a map and nearly half were unable to identify Mississippi.

Americans between the ages of 18 and 24 fared even worse with foreign locations: six in 10 couldn't find Iraq, according to a Roper poll conducted for National Geographic.

"Geographic illiteracy impacts our economic well-being, our relationships with other nations and the environment, and isolates us from the world," National Geographic president John Fahey said in announcing a program to help remedy the problem. It's hoping to enlist businesses, nonprofit groups and educators in a bid to improve geographic literacy.

Planned is a five-year, multimedia campaign called My Wonderful World that will target children 8 to 17. The goal is to motivate parents and educators to expand geographic offerings in school, at home and in their communities.

They will have their task cut out for them, judging by the results of the survey of 510 people interviewed in December and January.

Among the findings:

_ One-third of respondents couldn't pinpoint Louisiana on a map and 48 percent were unable to locate Mississippi.

_ Fewer than three in 10 think it important to know the locations of countries in the news and just 14 percent believe speaking another language is a necessary skill.

_ Two-thirds didn't know that the earthquake that killed 70,000 people in October 2005 occurred in Pakistan.

_ Six in 10 could not find Iraq on a map of the Middle East.

_ While the outsourcing of jobs to India has been a major U.S. business story, 47 percent could not find the Indian subcontinent on a map of Asia.

_ While Israeli-Palestinian strife has been in the news for the entire lives of the respondents, 75 percent were unable to locate Israel on a map of the Middle East.

_ Nearly three-quarters incorrectly named English as the most widely spoken native language.

_ Six in 10 did not know the border between North and South Korea is the most heavily fortified in the world. Thirty percent thought the most heavily fortified border was between the United States and Mexico.

 
At 5/04/2006 8:05 AM, Anonymous timmy said...

Just to get this straight, are you advocating military intervention in Darfur?

 

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