The Republicans want to cut government spending.
Translated simply – this means they want to stop giving poor people a break when they need it in order to get by among other initiatives they want to take to save money.
Fuel assistance is one example of what the Republican House wants to cut away from poor people.
Hundreds and hundreds of working poor in this city receive fuel subsidies to get through the winter.
This is exactly what the Republican Congress wants to cut away and to stop.
Add to this bit of drama the revolutions going on in Islamic nations overseas.
The revolution in Libya has caused the price for oil to skyrocket overnight.
Even though supply is plentiful, the price for a barrel of oil has gone over $100.
If you watch television, this means gasoline will likely be reaching the $3.50 to $4.00 per gallon price in a short while if Libya doesn’t straighten out.
What is almost never mentioned on television is the price for home heating oil, which is also going through the roof.
Home heating oil will be at the $3.50 per gallon threshold if it isn’t already there.
Translated simply, again, this means for a 200 gallon fill-up of your oil tank, it will cost $700.
Given the fact fuel assistance might provide a family with $500-$700 for a heating season, this means those receiving assistance get one fill-up.
The rest of the winter they will freeze because there is no way the working poor can keep their heaters going in this region at $3.50 per gallon home heating oil.
What to do?
If you’re the Republican Congress, you call for a cut in heating oil subsidies.
Brilliant, isn’t it?
Four sophisticated jet fighters ordered for the Air Force costing $125 million each costs more than all the heating oil assistance given in the past 5 years.
All the money we’ve spent and human capital we’ve used in Afghanistan and Iraq has cost more than $2 trillion. The spending goes on at a rate of $200 billion a year.
With $200 billion a year we could re-do every bridge road and highway that needs repair in the nation and while we’re at it, we could introduce high speed rail like China has and
a new school or two could be built in every city in every state in the nation, and college scholarships could be provided to nearly everyone who wants to better their education and on and on and on.
Instead, we’ve got the Tea Party Republicans screaming that government spending must be cut and oil subsidies need to be cut as well.
The oil and gasoline thing is mystifying.
Why is there no stomach to get the monkey off our backs. Cut back on our oil use. Cut back the importation of oil. Stop the dirty filthy oil speculation that is going on and driving prices higher even though there are no shortages?
Where is our leadership and where are we heading?