[. . .]
And we learned this week that in the last two months, the Bush administration has reduced its contributions to global food aid programs aimed at helping hungry nations become self-sufficient, and it has told charities like Save the Children and Catholic Relief Services that it won't honor earlier promises. Instead, administration officials said that most of the country's emergency food aid would go to places where there were immediate crises.
Something's not right here. The United States is the world's richest nation. Washington is quick to say that it contributes more money to foreign aid than any other country. But no one is impressed when a billionaire writes a $50 check for a needy family. The test is the percentage of national income we give to the poor, and on that basis this country is the stingiest in the Group of Seven industrialized nations.
The administration has cited the federal budget deficit as the reason for its cutback in donations to help the hungry feed themselves. In fact, the amount involved is a pittance within the federal budget when compared with our $412 billion deficit, which has been fueled by war and tax cuts. The administration can conjure up $87 billion for the fighting in Iraq, but can it really not come up with more than $15.6 billion - our overall spending on development assistance in 2002 - to help stop an 8-year-old AIDS orphan in Cameroon from drinking sewer water or to buy a mosquito net for an infant in Sierra Leone?
[. . .]
NYT via Melanie.
I thought the idea was 'putting Christ back in Christmas'? The way we neglect the poor and downtrodden is probably making Jesus' ass pucker.