2 years ago: Evangelicals and the politics of spite

Feb. 19, 2011, on this blog: Evangelicals and the politics of spite

The zombie lie that budgets could be balanced if only we stopped giving away such generous foreign humanitarian aid is actually two lies combined. First there is the lie that America’s foreign humanitarian aid is particularly generous. It’s not. And second there is the lie that a reduction, or even an elimination, of this spending would have any noticeable or meaningful impact on the federal budget. The graph above shows what we are talking about — a tiny, tiny sliver of overall discretionary spending, which is itself a smallish portion of the overall budget.

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  • Nathaniel

     Trolls gonna troll.

  • For a bunch of people who praise themselves as “hard-nosed; practical”, right-wingers seem to have a great deal of difficulty doing the hard-nosed, practical thing and actually read the line-items on budgets instead of making up stories from thin air about huggy-feely liberals blowing oodles and oodles of $$$$$ on foreign aid.

  • taserian

    One aspect that didn’t get covered in the original article is that a large proportion of that financial aid is conditionally given. The following quote expresses it best:

    A significant portion of the cash provided for such assistance
    must be spent on goods and services provided by suppliers from the
    donating country.

    Not only inefficient, this policy prescription can lead to outright
    ridiculous results. In the case of the Mozambique floods in 2000, I met a
    medical volunteer who explained how the only US-made bikes that they
    could find to get around the country on short notice were Harley
    Davidsons. And so three of them ended up running between medical
    stations like some breed of medical Hell’s Angel. Fascinating to behold,
    but utterly wasteful.

    Read more at http://matadornetwork.com/change/7-worst-international-aid-ideas/#uHylpEdVGHpWgr7A.99 —-So by cutting off foreign aid, you reduce the number of sales by U.S.-based companies. I’m not sure how you could add this to your vorpal head-cutting nasal-spiting analogy, but I’ve no doubt you could.