Do The Freakin Math

Liberals and conservatives alike frequently rely on limited evidence, personal experience, religious beliefs or gut emotions to determine solutions for complex problems. From immigration to global warming - taxes to terrorism - or health care to free trade - analytical study is rare. Science based policy making isn’t the way of Washington. And the consequences are catastrophic. Change is urgently needed. Just do the freakin’ math.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Taming the Deficit is easy. Not likely, but easy.

Few educated Americans would disagree that taming the deficit is key to maintaining US national security.
Jeffrey Sachs makes a compelling case (Time Magazine, "How to Tame the Deficit" Feb.15, 2010) that compromise in Washington could solve this dilemma if just “two conditions” are met --wide public acceptance of increasing taxes and weaning “Congress and the White House…off lobbyists”.
Those lobbyists succeed because they to often falsely claim that their pet projects are vital to national security.
Given these lies one other condition is necessary.
The general public must finally recognize that defense spending no longer protects our nation from the far greater and more immediate threats America faces from pandemics, terrorism, climate change, economic instability and international criminal networks. Preventing and preparing for these pervasive and massive threats are better done by wise investments in both domestic and global social programs (healthcare, nutrition, education, water and sanitation, jobs, micro lending and environmental restoration) and ‘rule of law’ programs that are democratic, just and protective of basic human rights.
Failing this approach we could easily wean Washington from shyster lobbyists. Simply return to our founding fathers plan for managing our Republic where each House Member was legislated to represent only 20,000 Americans, not the 600,000 citizens each Member now represents. This would add over 14,000 new Members to our House of Representatives but it would yield far more citizen influence over high paid lobbyists or corporate donations.
In reality, it isn’t the economic deficit that most threatens our security. Its our own ignorance, arrogance and apathy regarding the real world that surrounds us.

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