First, let’s interrupt today’s compassionate offering on the proposed budget from President Trump via his puppet Mick Mulvaney (who apparently likes to stuff his suits with grass) for this important healthcare message.
While we argue and bicker about healthcare in this country, let me be the first to endorse a 30 minute invasive procedure to save you – it is called a colonoscopy and everyone over 50 should have one.
I have friends who shake their heads, but think of it this way: a mere 30 minute relatively safe and harmless procedure versus chemotherapy and radiation for weeks and months on end with no guarantee of good health at the end of the road. Seems like a no-brainer to me.
As for me, I’ve had two since I turned 50. They make for great comedy material and peace of mind. Today’s comedy offering? I don’t mind the fasting and I don’t mind the brackish fluid they make you drink, but no man’s backside should produce a fluid that’s cleaner than the tap water in Flint Michigan.
Because of my latest attempt to remain healthy I missed the daily freak show in the White House press briefing room Thursday. I caught up with it via the Internet, and the day before St. Patrick’s day will go down as a day of infamy. For that is the day the Trump administration finally lost its tenuous hold on reality and the day I lost any respect for anyone working there.
It began when a reporter asked Mulvaney, that happy little leprechaun, if cutting the U.S. contribution to the United Nations was wise. According to the UN, we are facing the largest humanitarian crisis since the end of World War II with 20 million people in just four countries facing starvation or famine. When the reporter asked if the president was worried that some of the most vulnerable people on earth will suffer, Mulvaney effectively offered the poor and the vulnerable a middle finger.
We are absolutely going to spend less overseas, he said with a quixotic grin. He said it was a simple message – the Trump administration is going to spend more money on people back home.
Before you cheer, wait for the other shoe to drop. Mulvaney also outlined cuts to the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the NEA, the EPA and everything else except defense spending.
Grants that end up funding “Meals on Wheels?” Gone. Funds for after school meals for the poor? Gone.
Mulvaney, who briefed the press on the Trump administration’s budget, energetically said he was putting himself in the shoes of the coal miners from West Virginia, the steel workers from Ohio and the single mother of two in Detroit. He could no longer justify going to those poor people and asking them to fund those programs – many of which don’t work – according to Mulvaney.
We can’t fund them because they sound good, he claimed with a straight face and what still looked like a patch of grass sticking out of his suit's breast pocket.
After school meals programs don’t work because those programs are supposed to make poor students better in school by feeding them. It doesn’t work, he said.
“When we took the money from you, the way we justified it was these programs are going to help children do better in school and get better jobs. We can’t prove that is happening,” he claimed.
They don’t do demonstrably better in school, so forget feeding the poor. Let them starve.
Meals on Wheels? Well the federal government isn’t cutting meals to seniors – it’s merely cutting the grants which fund the program. The program can still exist if local and state governments can find the funds for them. Higher taxes anyone?
So, I guess when Mulvaney said the budget was taking care of people in the U.S. versus people overseas, he wasn’t referring to the poor or the elderly. They can starve and he wouldn’t care because he finds it more compassionate to tell the coal worker he isn’t taking his money any more – which as it turns out is a lie.
President Trump’s proposed budget is still running at a deficit and he’s not cutting the amount he’s taking from coal miners, single parents and steel workers – he’s just redirecting it. Instead of feeding people he wants to build more weapons to kill people.
I’ve seen this before – even outside of the “Star Wars” universe.
Mulvaney showed his true colors in saying the steel worker, the coal miner and single parents don’t want their taxes spent on feeding the elderly and the poor. The most generous people I’ve ever met are those who are living on society’s edge. They know only too well how close they are every day to being in the same situation as those with little or nothing. It is only the incredibly rich among us who have no idea what it means to go without every day necessities. Those are the people as callous as Mulvaney. Those are the people who benefit by cutting aid to those in need.
I predict three ghosts will visit Mulvaney this Christmas Eve as he encourages the poor to die quickly, thus killing off our surplus population.
It is incredibly elitist and inhuman of the man to play the working poor against the truly poor.
In the end when Mulvaney said to a foreign reporter the administration was going to support and propose an “America First Budget,” what he really meant was the president is backing a defense spending budget at the cost of the poor. In the argument of "Guns or Butter" as my old economics professor said, this administration wants more guns and less butter.
You don’t fund grants which support Meals on Wheels and you don’t fund after school meals for school children because you expect anything from those programs. You fund them because we can and should. Feed the poor. Care for the sick and the elderly.
How often have I heard people moralize about their Christian ethics and how often I’ve wondered as I sat in church how many of those people ever act as the Christians they claim to be.
I have many friends who’ve supported the current president and I respect and love all of them. I have never ended a friendship over politics and I won’t. Many of these people had salient points for supporting President Trump and still do. I agree with them on some of those points, and some of the moves the current administration has made I support.
But the callous and cavalier attitude displayed by Mulvaney Thursday was stunning on a level I’ve never seen before. To call cuts in funding to the poor “compassionate” is so distasteful as to cause me to vomit a little in the back of my throat.
Mulvaney told us the federal government has spent $150 billion since the 1970s on some of the grant programs which fund meals on wheels – and we have to cut the bleeding. Really? Since the 1970s? You could save that much and a lot more by not building a few planes and tanks. Imagine what you could’ve saved by not building one or two fighter planes a year since the 1970s.
It isn’t that we haven’t seen military build ups before in this country. This isn’t even the largest of my lifetime.
But no one has been more callous and more dehumanizing in defending social cuts than Mulvaney was as he sat center stage in the greatest theater in the country.
Thursday I missed the theater and had to watch it on television because I had a colonoscopy. But that pales in comparison to the reaming the American public got from Mulvaney and the Trump budget.
If you’re a Christian, give up the title if you won’t support the poor, the infirmed and the elderly. And while you can, get a colonoscopy – it might just save your life. It saved mine. Now how do we save ourselves?