Stick Your Foreign Aid Up Your A$$
So a friend on Facebook ranted about how little we do for the sickly elderly, the pathetic homeless, our vulnerable troops, and the crazy little we do for the mentally ill. Using the numbers from the 2010 federal budget, I responded:
$453 BILLION spent on medicating the elderly.
$9.7 BILLION spent on giving elderly a paycheck on top of that.
$663.7 BILLION spent on equipping troops with military physical capital, intelligence, etc.
$52.5 BILLION on veterans affairs, including medicating them.
$78.7 BILLION spent on health and human services, including treating the mentally ill.
That’s just from the federal government in one year, 2010. That’s not including the other billions states spend on these things. Add all of it up and aiding the elderly and defense each reach into the trillions of dollars PER YEAR.
Then you’ve got the subsidies going into helping people live and prosper, like $47.5 BILLION going to the Department of Housing and Urban Development which makes renting and buying homes easier and cheaper; making it cheaper drives the housing industry which is one of the primary precursors of economic booms.
We also have the $13.3 BILLION making sure businesses follow the law and don’t treat laborers like shit in this country.
Oh there’s also $42.7 BILLION going towards the Department of Homeland Security which adds intelligence in order to defend the country and make life at least marginally easier on the military to do the job they’re supposed to be doing.
Then there’s $26 BILLION going to the Department of Agriculture which subsidizes farmers growing crops, making food cheaper to grow and, as a result, sell in the market, leading to cheaper food for everyone, including the elderly, mentally ill, homeless, and troops you’re so worried about.
Our annual budget is $3,552,000,000,000. Foreign aid takes up 0.5% of that: $177,600,000,000. Do you want to know why we do it? Probably not, but…
Most of the foreign aid goes towards countries we really want to have good trading with. These are countries that have something we want and want to make sure we are in good terms in order to reap the benefits. While we could spend the that foreign aid money on medicating the elderly, giving them a paycheck, more on defense and veteran affairs, and more on treating the mentally ill and helping the homeless, the foreign aid we do provide makes it possible for us to get oil far cheaper than the rest of the world does because we get special treatment compared to the other developed countries in the world who do not give much foreign aid. Cheaper oil means cheaper plastics and gasoline, meaning the mentally ill can get gas cheaper in order to fill up their car’s gas tank and run over a dozen people before finally being stopped by the tank purchased with a cool million out of that $663.7 BILLION that went into defense.
The country we give most foreign aid to is Israel which, because of their conflicts in the Middle East, is a powerhouse of military research and development. A lot of the equipment you want the troops to have was researched, discovered, developed and produced in Israel; the foreign aid we give Israel helps make sure Israel is our butt buddy and sells the stuff to us instead of Russia or Eastern Europe, which is where a lot of the ISraeli Jews came from.
We gave foreign aid to the flood victims in Pakistan because the faster they stop drowning, the faster they get back to what is normal for their country. The faster they get back to normal, the less damage there will be to the country’s poverty problem. The less poverty, the less likely some of those people will be so pissed off they join the Taliban or Al Qaeda. That means foreign aid for Pakistani flood victims is actually an indirect subsidy for defense by making life easier on the military and, thus, less bullets and mortars troops need to worry about.
So: why do you hate the troops so much?