Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Money Left To Swat The Mosquito?

As we know, Patrick Murphy recently helped pass the so-called “PAYGO” rule in Congress, which, as stated here, would require new tax cut programs to be paid for with other tax increases or cuts in spending (Murphy was one of the co-sponsors).

While I definitely applaud PAYGO, I should point out what will likely be one of its first tests, and that is the continued funding of the campaign to fight malaria in Africa by providing bed netting such as the type in the photo (Ralph Nader has more in this Counter Punch article - continually trying to overlook his role from November 2000 and not create negative energy).

This is perhaps a historic post on my part because I’m actually going to give Dubya credit for doing something right, though this wouldn’t even be happening if it weren’t for the high-profile rock star pleadings and influence exertion of Bono. However, fair is fair.

The problem is that, while the now-dead-and-buried Repug congress was busy with tax cut giveaways to their pals in the energy, pharma and financial services industries, they underfunded the proposed $1.2 billion requested by Dubya to the tune of $30 million. And in my perhaps paranoid suspicions, I’m wondering why President Brainless started making a big show of providing funding for more countries in Africa to fight malaria last December after the Repugs had lost Congress.

Would I be too craven if I suggested that Dubya spotted an opportunity to put pressure on Dems to provide the funding that the Repugs didn’t and make political hay out of it (look how those “limousine liberals” are helping to kill the poor in Africa…more hypocrisy)?

I realize that I would have to be truly heartless to suggest that we shouldn’t fund this important cause just to balance some numbers. And that’s one reason why I won’t do that.

Another reason is because we have it in our power to provide the funds by reinstituting the full amount of the estate tax and saving the cost of providing for our troops in Iraq when we bring them home (and speaking of that, I would suggest Dubya study the results of this CNN quick vote yesterday before he makes any more speeches about “surge and escalation”).

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