Stoller, at Open Left and Newscoma mentioned this earlier, but I wanted to talk a little about the Blue Dogs potential block of veterans funding.
So, here’s the situation, as I see it. Bush wants more war funding, with no oversight. 159 Democrats in Congress including Steve Cohen (TN-09) and Bart Gordon (TN-06) have co-sponsored a bill that would right the wrongs done to veterans as the result of less GI Bill funding. Put these two wants together in one bill and everyone gets something they want, right?
Not for the Blue Dogs. The Blue Dogs want to fund the war, WITH NO TAX INCREASES or any kind of budget balancing, but are sketchy on funding education for our veterans, WITHOUT SOME TAX INCREASE or maintaining the rules of pay-go.
Veterans Education: $720 M/year
Bush’s War: $1 Trillion/ so far
Veterans Education: Must have tax increases to pay for.
Bush’s War: Lower taxes on the wealthy.
What does this tell you? Blue Dogs despite their high falutin’ talk, don’t give really care about the troops after they come home, they care about some bastardized Republican ideal of looking strong to the rest of the world or “winning” with no metric to define a “win”. (Even using language like that makes my stomach turn)
WAKE UP CALL, we ain’t strong without the troops.
In an economic downturn, the Army is still missing it’s recruiting goals. That means that people don’t want to go over there and possibly get shot up for something that they both, don’t agree with, and then when they get back, won’t get anything in return for their service.
We’ve already seen how the military is taking care of the wounded at Walter Reid. Remember that? Shouldn’t we do everything in our power to reassure those who might want to join, in the service of our nation, that they will have an opportunity to succeed when they leave the service?
Our service members have made the sacrifice to put their life on the line. They are willing to give up everything, and WE should be willing to do MORE THAN EVERYTHING to ensure that they have the care and the opportunity to succeed when they return.
Shame on you Blue Dogs, SHAME!
Here are some quick facts about the veterans funding portion of the bill (S. 22/ HR 2707).