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View Diary: Austerity bomb deal must include FEMA aid for Sandy (78 comments)

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  •  Now were talking. Congress is good at that, (2+ / 0-)
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    mightymouse, Calamity Jean

    apparently doing so in Iraq and Afghanistan for years.

    Right now HUGE Fed stimulus going on in the middle east...

    Via War Costs

    America Begins Nation-Building at Home (Provided Your Home is the Middle East)
    Posted by John Amick · November 15, 2012 3:56 PM

    This article was originally published at

    By Nick Turse

    A billion dollars from the federal government: that kind of money could go a long way toward revitalizing a country’s aging infrastructure.  It could provide housing or better water and sewer systems.  It could enhance a transportation network or develop an urban waterfront.  It could provide local jobs.  It could do any or all of these things.  And, in fact, it did.  It just happened to be in the Middle East, not the United States.

    The Pentagon awarded $667.2 million in contracts in 2012, and more than $1 billion during Barack Obama’s first term in office for construction projects in largely autocratic Middle Eastern nations, according to figures provided to TomDispatch by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Middle East District (USACE-MED).  More than $178 million in similar funding is already anticipated for 2013.  These contracts represent a mix of projects, including expanding and upgrading military bases used by U.S. troops in the region, building facilities for indigenous security forces, and launching infrastructure projects meant to improve the lives of local populations.

    The figures are telling, but far from complete.  They do not, for example, cover any of the billions spent on work at the more than 1,000 U.S. and coalition bases, outposts, and other facilities in Afghanistan or the thousands more manned by local forces.  They also leave out construction projects undertaken in the region by other military services like the U.S. Air Force, as well as money spent at an unspecified number of bases in the Middle East that the Corps of Engineers “has no involvement with,” according to Joan Kibler, chief of the Middle East District’s public affairs office.

    WTF?  And its being suggested we negotiate for aid for the tri state region? WTF WTF WTF  WTF ?

    Move Single Payer Forward? Join 18,000 Doctors of PNHP and 185,000 member National Nurses United

    by divineorder on Sun Nov 18, 2012 at 03:50:05 PM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  re: the negotiation... (1+ / 0-)
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      I think Armando's got a strategic aim in mind, which I don't think will work, but he's not just saying we should negotiate -- he's saying that you open that door and more cash will follow because the principle will have been set. I think the aid should be separate unless there are no spending cut strings attached, i.e. there should be no tradeoff in any sense at any level between aid and cuts, and of course the overall idea of massive cash inflows to the region is a good one.

      it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses

      by Addison on Sun Nov 18, 2012 at 03:54:49 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  My reply was focused on this part of your comment (0+ / 0-)
        drop cash from helicopters every hour on the hour in the coastal tri-state region.

        Move Single Payer Forward? Join 18,000 Doctors of PNHP and 185,000 member National Nurses United

        by divineorder on Sun Nov 18, 2012 at 04:04:40 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  That's my more ambitious goal (0+ / 0-)

        But my short term goal is easily doable politically imo.

        I would not be surprised if Schumer has something like that in mind already.

        It's an endgame position though, not what you offer out of the box.

        I think Obama and Reid are making all the right noises right now about being determined that the Bush tax cuts for the rich end this year.

        Ask for more than what you will settle for.

        Basic bargaining technique.

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