hey, i don’t know if you guys heard or not, but somebody told me something about you and me—you know, taxpayers—giving a bunch of rich white guys at some place called wall street 700 billion dollars… no, no, that’s right: 700 billion dollars. oh, you think we should use our taxpayer dollars for ridiculous stuff like healthcare and education and global aids relief. clearly you’re retarded. that’s just silly talk.
seriously though, i have mixed feelings about this whole bailout situation. when i say mixed feelings, what i mean is that 1% of me says, “you know, this could create some economic stabilization that will help in other areas of our economy/government.” the other 99% of me just vomited in my mouth a little bit.
i think the thing that really kind of rubs me the wrong way is that just a fraction of that 700 billion dollars could do so much other really good and needed things. take a look at this:
It is nine times the amount spent on education in 2007.
It is 35 times the amount spent on all foreign aid in most years.
According to some estimates, it is three times what it would cost, over 10 years, to reduce oil dependency by 20%.
Its over twice the amount of all money given to all charitalbe organizations in the United States in any given year.
It is more than $100 for every person in the world.
those numbers blow my mind. nine times the budget for education in an entire year?? 35 times the foreign aid budget?? those things are really depressing. ryan’s-worldview-lens-moment: indeed these things show that we are far from a “christian nation” that some people would like to suggest (unless they’re talking about a different jesus than i know).
for me, though, my biggest problem with spending 700 billion to pay off the rich guys is that while those guys are getting paid off, 49 million people are living with illness, staggering medical bills and fear of some kind of medical catastrophe because they can’t afford health insurance. that isn’t to mention the millions of people who do have health insurance who are living with the same fears and financial problems because of their outrageous premiums and the bills that their insurance company won’t cover.
the truly and deeply troubling issue in the united states is the healthcare crisis. what has happened with this bailout stuff, particularly, is that all discussion in the presidential race of healthcare reform has ceased. i’m afraid healthcare is going to become of those election issues like abortion. every four years, we listen to someone talk about how much they’re against abortion all during the election and then they do nothing about it when elected. i’m afraid that healthcare reform is going to go down the same route.
i am hopeful that barack obama is truthful when he says that he wants to spearhead a new universal healthcare system. i hope i haven’t naively gotten my hopes up. i want to believe in change you can believe in. we need this change because health is a fundamentally civilized expectation.
healthcare is a right, not a privilege.
in a civilized and just society, every single person has equal access to adequate and timely healthcare. and i think it’s time that this issue makes it back into the national spotlight.
mr. obama, mr. mccain: i know that you read my blog… (as well as many other powerful important people…people who own many leatherbound books…) so, please talk about this issue more and make it the top priority this year.
(and when you go to the polls next month, make this issue a priority as you vote!)