Stimulus bill

So it looks like Republicans want to trim some costs out of Obama’s stimulus bill. Fair enough, there’s plenty of crap in there. Unfortunately, they’re looking to trim costs from education and science, two major foes of conservatives.

A roster of $88 billion worth of cuts was circulating Thursday, almost half of which would come from education grants to states, with an additional $13 billion in aid the local school districts for special education and the No Child Left Behind law on the chopping block as well.

Well, NCLB is a bunch of crap that focuses on seeing which students can take tests the best, so that’s fine, but the actual education monies need to stay. That’s probably the worst thing that can be cut. Wait…

Nearly 20 senators from both parties met twice during the day and reviewed a list of possible cuts totaling 88 billion. They included elimination of at least $40 billion in aid to the states, which have budget crises of their own, as well as $1.4 billion ticketed for the National Science Foundation.

It’s surprising that Democrats would join in on this, but they were elected by the American public, too. I suppose it makes sense that they wouldn’t be very passionate about science.

Critics contend the bill is bloated with spending for items that won’t create jobs, such as smoking prevention programs or efforts to combat a future pandemic flu outbreak.

The smoking prevention program is an issue with the Republicans. They apparently don’t realize smoking is responsible for 30% of all cancer deaths in the U.S. Read that again. Thirty percent of all people who die of cancer each year die because they smoked (or inhaled secondhand smoke). It seems reasonable that we would want to relieve our health care system – and more importantly individual human beings – of the hardship and cost associated with being stupid enough to smoke.

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One Response

  1. It amazes me how little some people realize the utility of things like scienctific research or health prevnetion measures.

    I can’t stress enough how regrettable it is that we Americans live in an “instant gratification” society, and can’t seem to focus clearly on longer-term goals, even if their relative benefit is obvious to anyone who has spent any time considering the issues.

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