To the Editor:
As I write this, Congress is debating massive cuts in spending that will virtually eliminate early-childhood and teacher-training programs, as well as housing, job training, health and energy assistance for the poor and homeless, in the name of deficit reduction. At the same time, the wealthiest Americans are paying less and less in taxes, including the largest corporations. GE, the largest corporation in the nation, paid no tax last year and even received tax rebates. In addition, government spending for war-making continues to balloon, now twice what it was 10 years ago, much of it spent on an empire of close to a thousand foreign bases. Economists at the nonpartisan National Priorities Project estimate our military now spends $1.2 trillion/year of our tax dollars. This is well over half of the federal discretionary spending budget.
A budget is a moral document. It reflects our values. Does this budget reflect American values? To overflow the coffers of war-makers like GE by throwing money at wasteful weapons systems and on military personnel around the world while communities here at home go bankrupt? To allow the most powerful to trample on the least among us and cast them aside?
I know this budget does not reflect my values, and I challenge our congresspeople and their constituents to discern if it truly reflects their own values.
JANE SWIFT DUGDALE