We Don't Care - We Don't Have To
Author: Wendy Taormina-Weiss
Synopsis and Key Points:
The politicians of America have chosen without question to leave People with Disabilities in last place.
Main DigestThe war in Afghanistan is one that nobody wants, with the exception of the United States Government.
The soldiers fighting the war don't want it. The people of America don't want it, for the most part. The veterans who have come home with disabilities don't want it. The war has been costly, in more than one way to be certain.
The cost of the war in Afghanistan, at least at one second, was $420,790,921,127.
Bear in mind that this figure has absolutely grown, by millions and more. 1,140 and counting U.S. Soldiers have been killed during this war. There have been 3,420 and counting seriously injured. Afghan civilians who have been killed8,813 and counting. The total number of people who have been killed during this war, at last count, is nearly 20,000, with nearly 49,000 people experiencing injuries.
The war in Iraq has been worse, in many ways. The 9-11 attacks against America launched wars that have cost Americans in ways that are both human and financial. The total cost of the wars this nation has pursued since the year 2001 exceeds $1.2 Trillion Dollars.
The United States of America has spent more than $7.6 Trillion Dollars on Defense and Homeland Security since September 11th, 2001. Homeland Security spending amounts to around $635.9 Billion Dollars of that amount. The figure related to Homeland Security is interesting because this money is not tracked or documented as completely as money spent in relation to other government funding. Between 2001 and fiscal year 2012, spending on Homeland Security went from $16 Billion Dollars to $71.6 Billion Dollars. Tracking money spent on Homeland Security seems to be an issue.
The amounts spent on Defense and Homeland Security would go a long ways towards helping people with health care, independent living, and much, much more - wouldn't you sayWhere the soldiers who are fighting the war in Afghanistan are concerned, there is also another matter to take into consideration - race, yet it is money and the housing market that are driving people to, 'join up,' and go to war.
The unemployment rate among young Black and Hispanic males is perhaps second only to that of People with Disabilities in America. Guess who also experiences some of the highest rates of violence in this nation? There is also the housing market, which is and has been in the pits, driving these same populations out of their homes. When you have no job and no home, the military starts looking pretty good. With a years-long war in Afghanistan going on, there is little chance in my opinion that the U.S. Government is without at least some level of complicity in this matter.
The United States Government, despite increasing spending on military costs, has proposed to save $400 Billion Dollars by freezing non-security discretionary spending.What this means is that the government has frozen the Social Security Block Grant at fiscal year 2010 levels. The government has also cut the Community Development Block Grant by $1.3 Billion Dollars, as well as cutting the Low Income Energy Assistance Program by a whopping $2.5 Billion Dollars. Guess who is paying for the war in part? People with Disabilities, Seniors, Children, and Veterans with Disabilities. The cut to the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program represents a fifty-six percent cut!
Never ignoring defense spending, the government has allocated around fifty-eight percent of discretionary spending to defense. Both defense and security spending of taxpayer dollars account for sixty-six percent of discretionary spending in fiscal year 2011, telling you everything you need to know where the government's concern for the rights, education, and well-being of People with Disabilities, Seniors, and Children are concerned.
Would the amounts being spent on defense and security ever resolve the woes associated with Medicare
No - they would not. Bear in mind though, the facts related to corporate tax evasion in America. Nearly eight out of every ten corporations have tax, 'havens.' In fact, eighty-three of this nation's one-hundred largest corporations had subsidiaries in offshore tax havens as recently as 2007. Some of these companies received federal bailout money; taxpayer money.
Three of these companies had more than one-hundred units in nations that have low or no taxes. These three companies were included in the $700 Billion Dollar financial bailout that was approved by Congress. One insurance company alone received around $150 Billion Dollars of that bailout money. One major car manufacturer in America received $13.4 Billion Dollars worth of bailout tax dollars, all while it had eleven offshore tax shelters.
Keep the fact in mind that there are thousands upon thousands of corporations doing business in America that evade federal taxes every single year.
Former Democratic Senator Byron Dorgan stated, "I think we should take action to shut down these tax dodgers and we will be introducing legislation to do just that," Dorgan said. The cost to this nation in tax dollars from corporations who evade federal taxes amounts to at least $100 Billions Dollars; each and every single year. Notice I said, 'Former,' Democratic Senator Byron Dorgan.
There are certain politicians in America who are more than willing to take away Social Security from People with Disabilities, Seniors, and Veterans with Disabilities. Understand that the Veterans Administration is still working with a disability rating system from World War II. There are certain politicians who want to, 'modify,' Medicare and Medicaid, turning it into a voucher program that, 'promises,' people health care. The United States of America has yet to ratify The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, unlike Pakistan for example.
The actions of the politicians in America very clearly demonstrates an anti-disability position.The politicians of this nation, who are supposed to be leading all of the people of America and not just some of the people of this nation, have chosen without question to leave People with Disabilities in last place. Instead, these politicians have chosen to pursue wars that cost lives and Billions upon Billions of Dollars, as well as to give corporations more than a Hundred Billion Dollars every single year. Now they have given corporations the right to donate as much money as they want to the candidates of their choice. The only question on my mind is - Where are We, Where are Our Rights
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- 4 - During Pandemic, Disabled Activists Fight a Two-Front War for Their Lives : Op-ed by Abe Munder (2020/05/24)
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- 7 - Incarceration of Disabled Persons in the United Kingdom : Disabled World (2009/06/27)
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