"Buddy, can you spare a dime?"

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buddy-can-you-spare-a-dimeToday’s Washington Post is a veritable treasure chest of crucial information relative to our present schizophrenic state of mind as a nation. We are in very deep financial trouble, much deeper than we have been told, and all the "war talk" seems to be fluff to take our minds off the real issue of impending national poverty. We are broke. We need to face up to that fact.

Okay, now it is time for some real hard reading.  Strap yourself in. This is going to be a rough ride.

     

The various states, municipalities and other government arms throughout the United States are quickly running out of money. Real pain is ahead for millions of Americans.

We cannot afford a $30 billion dollar war in western Asia if Americans are going to be spared draconian changes in their lives in the next eighteen months. We are in deep trouble, and simply put, we cannot afford to squander this money on a "General McChrystal Pipe Dream of Saving Afghanistan from Itself". We cannot afford the fantasy.

We are out of options here, brother and sister citizens. Our days of imperialism have literally forced us into the poor house. We are tapped out. The blood lust binge is over.

Our attempt at being the Roman Empire is done. We are broke. We need to face that fact and adjust our foreign policy before we have civil war in this country.

Hungry and unemployed or underemployed citizens do not support imperial wars waged for the benefit of the portfolios of the High and Mighty. Enough already! It is time for all of us to take our reality pill and stem the fever of whatever-it-is that hooked us all on this war addiction under the first George Bush in the Gulf War.

We cannot afford this addiction to war. We simply do not have the money for it if we want to escape massive civil unrest here at home.

American kids are going hungry, American homeowners are losing their homes and the Patrician class that controls government could not care less about the pain they are causing for the 98% of us who are shackled to their abuse of power. Enough already! We have to take back control over government, and in short, that means we have to take back control of where our money is being spent.

The very first rule to understand about American business is the most important one and here it is: whoever controls the checkbook controls the organizational agenda. We have to take back complete control of the American checkbook from Congress in whatever way we can.

It is the only way that roughly forty percent of our families are going to survive this ordeal and come out the other end with a middle class American lifestyle. That is roughly speaking how many of us are facing real poverty in the face within the next eighteen months. This is a formula for massive civil unrest that would approximate the Civil War. We are in deep trouble.

In the first article entitled States’ jobless funds are drained during recession we find that pain is everywhere. Here is an excerpt:

"The recession’s jobless toll is draining unemployment-compensation funds so fast that according to federal projections, 40 state programs will go broke within two years and need $90 billion in loans to keep issuing the benefit checks.

The shortfalls are putting pressure on governments to either raise taxes or shrink the aid payments

Debates over the state benefit programs have erupted in South Carolina, Nevada, Kansas, Vermont and Indiana. And the budget gaps are expected to spread and become more acute in the coming year, compelling legislators in many states to reconsider their operations.

Currently, 25 states have run out of unemployment money and have borrowed $24 billion from the federal government to cover the gaps. By 2011, according to Department of Labor estimates, 40 state funds will have been emptied by the jobless tsunami.

"There’s immense pressure, and it’s got to be faced," said Indiana state Rep. David Niezgodski (D), a sponsor of a bill that addressed the gaps in Indiana’s unemployment program. "Our system was absolutely broke."

Do you still think this idea of Obama’s War under the ever-unconscious and out of touch General McChrystal is a good idea?

I didn’t think you did.

In another article, we find that the Wall Street Crash of October 2008 under Dubya’s Reign is causing pain everywhere.  Everywhere.

Ireland is in deep trouble. In an article entitled In Ireland’s deep budget cuts, an omen for a heavily indebted United States? we see bad things happening. Here is an excerpt:

"Like other heavily indebted nations around the world, Ireland is borrowing vast sums from foreign investors to plug its budget deficit. Fearing that the country will buckle under the weight of so much debt, the Irish have an answer: Put the government on a diet.

More than $4 billion in cuts coming into effect after New Year’s Day will slash salaries for 400,000 government workers while making painful reductions in benefits for such groups as widows and single mothers to the blind and disabled children. A tax targeting rich Irish nationals living overseas — dubbed the "Bono Tax" in the Irish press — will help restock empty coffers at home. Even Prime Minister Brian Cowen, who earns about as much as President Obama, is taking a 20 percent pay cut.

Such drastic steps have put Ireland on the front lines of a global battle against runaway government spending and exploding budget deficits in the wake of the financial crisis. The world’s richest nations, according to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, are more indebted than at any time in at least the past 50 years."

So what do you think, is this ridiculous expenditure of $30 billion dollars for an unnecessary war in Af-Pakistan a good idea? Do you really think that a defense budget of $655 billion dollars next year is what this country needs to keep it strong and vital?

Me neither.

It is time to slash our Defense and Homeland Security budgets by at least ten percent this year, ten percent in 2011 and ten percent in 2012. We need that money elsewhere. It is that simple. We are out of money and very soon we will be out of time.

We are "defense and security" spending ourselves into financial disaster. It is time for us to wake up from this accountant’s nightmare of overextended credit, phony book keeping and make-pretend wealth and take that Defense and Homeland Security money and plow it back into the real needs of the American people.

We need to export war like Pennsylvania needs to import coal.

The world is going to have to defend itself from the psychotic phantoms we have created to justify this kind of ridiculous defense outlay every year. We cannot afford to be this psychotic anymore. The real enemy is national poverty and it now has us by the throat. Do you think we should start to realize this before we choke to death on debt and expanding American poverty and the civil unrest that is coming?

As for Al Qaeda, the latest image of America’s enemies that we have created in order to gain a foothold in western Asia, they have just shown up at a rally in Yemen. That is nowhere near western Asia.

In an article entitled Qaeda makes rare public appearance at Yemen rally we find these ultra-fundamentalist Wahabist nut-jobs attempting to induce Yemeni poor to revolt. There is not much government there to revolt against. But one thing is for sure, they are not in Afghanistan in any numbers. So why are we there?

It is time to tell the Defense Department and the war industry captains that lobby viciously for its overbloated budget every year to go to hell. It is time for sanity to creep back into the American psyche.

It is time to take our money and apply it to our needs, and not the needs of the war industries and the energy cartels and the emerging market manipulators who all happened to be so deeply connected to government that it is impossible to tell who is the government employee and who is the lobbyist.

It is time to break the back of Patrician influence in Washington and simply take over the checkbook.

If we do not, we are doomed to at least two generations of real poverty and despair for roughly four out of ten American families.

So what do you think? Is the war in Afghanistan and its $30 billion dollar price tag a good idea?

CWO3 Tom Barnes, USCG (Ret.)

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