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December 07, 2008

Disgusting: “Earmarks Help Businesses, not Troops” (genghis)

(The article’s headline should’ve read “Earmarks Help Businesses and Powerful Senators, not Troops,” but why quibble…the text of the article takes care of that.)

Sometimes newspaper reporters do actually hit on something important, and this is one such case. According to this article in the Seattle Times, earmarks continue to put our armed forces in danger with regards to chemical warfare protection.

Here’s the setup for the article:

”After being lobbied by companies making a decontamination powder, powerful U.S. senators Charles Schumer, Hillary Rodham Clinton and Arlen Specter forced the military to keep buying what it considers inferior chemical-warfare protection for the troops.”

Now for the article:
”Scientists have discovered a lotion that can save the lives of U.S. soldiers exposed to chemical weapons — a product vastly superior to the standard-issue decontamination powder.”

“Naturally, the Defense Department wants to scrap the powder and switch to the more-effective lotion.”

“But there's a problem: After being lobbied by the companies making the powder, several members of Congress pushed through two earmarks worth $7.6 million that forced the military for the past two years to keep buying the inferior product.”


Names are named:
”Among the lawmakers who championed the earmarks are Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y.; Arlen Specter, R-Pa.; and Charles Schumer, D-N.Y.”

“Clinton, who is poised to become secretary of state, received nearly $7,000 in campaign donations from the beneficiaries of these earmarks in recent years. Specter got more than $47,000.”


This a bipartisan clusterfuck, with lots of big names on both sides of the aisle. Lots more disturbing details in the article. But as I put in the title of this post: disgusting.


digg this
posted by xgenghisx at 11:32 PM

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