Saturday, June 16, 2007

Right Answer, Wrong Reason

According to an AP report published in USA Today, homeland security isn't important enough to require that its workers receive decent wages. The silly House Democrats passed a bill that would add funds to the Department of Homeland Security budget to cover the added cost, but because that was more money than the White House wanted, a veto is assured and, because the GOP members of the House have decided once again to march in lockstep with the president, will block the extra funds.

What was interesting in this article, however, was a mention of an area that the GOP congress critters balked at following the orders of deciderer-in-chief:

...the White House is giving a free pass to a politically sacrosanct bill funding veterans' programs, due for a House vote Friday afternoon, even though that measure exceeds Bush's request by $4 billion, or 7%.

Earlier, the White House signaled its desire to veto the veterans funding bill for violating Bush's budget "caps." But Republicans on Capitol Hill have made it clear that with troops overseas, they're not interested in facing off with Democrats over veterans spending and that any veto would have been overridden.

Note the language used by the Republicans: not that shortchanging the veterans whose legs and arms and heads are being blown off in Bush's Boutique War is evil, but that the Republicans don't want to look bad in the run-up to the next election.

Well, they ought to be concerned. They have a terrible record to run on when it comes to the treatment of those who have served in the military. Like just about every other federal agency touched by the Bush administration, the Veteran's Administration is broken, although many of the political appointees to that department are doing just fine, what with the bonuses and all. The VA can't possibly cope with the extensive injuries, visible and not-so-visible, from this war on the niggling budget it has been given the past six years.

And what that means to the nation as a whole is appalling. Woody Guthrie's Guitar has a post up at Walled-In-Pond that details just how serious the problem is, replete with links that shows just how "concerned" the Republicans have been in the past.

Magnetic yellow ribbons. That's what supporting the troops is all about for some folks. That, and winning elections.



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