I’m back on my soapbox

I’m back on my soapbox

Forgive me for my little rant but I’m not having the best of days and I need to blow off some steam.

This is more of a political rant and I look forward to hearing my friend Dot’s opinion.  We’ve been known to spare in the political arena. 


I had to run out to the store this morning.  While I was gone, I drove past no less than 6 people with signs, begging for help. The last guy I saw just broke my heart, especially because I had nothing to give at this moment in time.

You never know what’s really going on when you see people like this and they could be taking advantage to people.

However, this last gentleman that I came across, looked ashamed to be standing there, holding a sign.  He wouldn’t look at anyone, as though he was somehow less human or unworthy of eye contact. 

My heart just broke.

I feel the need to express my frustration with our government and the world as a whole. 

It’s like we take care of the entire world whilst our own people suffer.

It’s way, way more complicated than that and I’m not saying that we shouldn’t help those in need. I just wonder why we send money, large sums of money to other countries when our own people are going hungry or homeless.

I’m all for the United States being the leader of the free world. 

Having said that, a good friend recently told me that I can’t save every single person in need.  I have to make sure that I take care of my own. 

He’s absolutely right and was telling me this because I was saying how guilty I felt because I couldn’t help someone I had come across recently.

We have to take care of ourselves before we start giving away to others in need, especially when those in need are outside our borders. I don’t mean to sound callus, I just wonder if our priorities are in the right place. 

Sometimes I wish we could just put politics aside and just do what’s right. 

It feels like maybe there’s too many cooks in the kitchen to ever do anything effectively, efficiently or ever at all.

Admittedly, I’m not a politician but right is right and wrong is wrong.  I don’t need to be an elected official to recognize that.

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I don’t know when exactly we got this idea that we had to be the world’s policeman. Maybe it was World War I that did it. But it seems we spend so much money interfering with the domestic problems of other countries (lookin’ at you, Iraq) when we’ve got enough problems at home. For all the money we spend on war we could provide a free college education to everyone. And free health care probably too. I read about a little boy, about ten or twelve years old, in Alabama or somewhere who got a toothache and DIED because his family couldn’t afford to take him to the dentist and they had no insurance. The infection in his tooth managed to leak into his brain and he died. In the richest nation on earth, no child should be dying of a tooth ache for lack of affordable health care.


MeaghanGood It’s weird because neither party really talks about this.  President Obama doesn’t want to go into Syria (a third mideast war, anyone?) but the pressure to do so comes from both sides of the aisle.  Americans who are less interventionist have to make their feelings better known, I think.  I’d much rather have healthcare than a war in Syria, but it looks as if it’s going the other way…  Sad on both counts.


dotdash MeaghanGood The war in Syria is extremely sad and it doesn’t look like it’s going to end anytime soon. I wish it would stop, but I’m afraid that our getting involved, rather than ending it faster, will wind up prolonging the conflict.
Also…arming the Syrian rebels? Remember when we armed the Taliban? Yeah, that worked out really well for us in the long run, didn’t it?


I agree. I get so annoyed that the US spends so much money on helping other countries (which is nice) when our own people are suffering. We should help our citizens first and then help others.


Hey, surprise:   I mostly agree with you!  I would much rather we feed people here than send arms abroad (which we do a lot of).  
The government sent 49.5 billion abroad in 2011 ($18 billion military + $14 billion USAID + $16 billion other economic).  I’d be happy to stop sending arms abroad, and I’d be happy to end some of the the boondoggle economic projects we fund in foreign countries.  USAID, which is the bags of rice you see flown into places like Indonesia and Haiti after natural disasters — I think that is worth doing, if only to even up our karma for the destructive things our foreign policy does in this world.  
But I agree with you.  I don’t think we should have hungry people on the streets or hungry kids in schools.  I’m sick of seeing trillions spent on new fighter technologies while old people languish in run down homes and children go to schools full of lead paint and asbestos.  
Hurrah for common ground!


It angers me so much with all the aid we give away to other countries when we can’t even take care of our own.  Hells, if we took all the money we give away, we could probably afford healthcare for our residents!


OnyxPanthyr Well, no.  We sent $49.5 billion abroad in 2011; we spent $802 billion on Medicare and Medicaid.  So even if we took every cent from foreign aid, it would only fund 6% of what we already spend on healthcare.  Too bad, though, that would be nice.


dotdash OnyxPanthyr Every little bit helps!  I’ll take it!  🙂


dotdash OnyxPanthyr What about the money we spent in our military budget though?


MeaghanGood dotdash OnyxPanthyr True.


MeaghanGood dotdash OnyxPanthyr That is a whole ‘nother $800 billion or something.  I’m all for slimming the military.  Maybe one less new fighter program, 30,000 new teachers? 100,000,000,000 school lunches?


dotdash MeaghanGood OnyxPanthyr I read once about how Congress authorized a zillion dollars to build some big fighter jet or ship or something or other that not only did the military not request, but the military specifically stated they did not want. The senator who sponsored the bill wanted it because the people in his constituency would be making the unwanted military weapon, which meant lots of people would have jobs, which meant they would be grateful and would vote for the senator next time around. When it cost untold millions and the military didn’t even WANT the stupid thing.

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