Citizen Smash rips into France et. al. for their whining about the reconstruction contracts. I couldn't agree more. I mean, didn't their mothers ever read them the story of La Petite Pollet Rouge?
The U.S. is using its own money to reconstruct Iraq and France thinks it is deserving of it after doing everything it could to thwart the Iraqi liberation. Who's being arrogant now?
There is a possible compromise that might help move things forward. Noncoalition partners who have been helpful in the war on terror should be eligible for contracts to the extent that they are giving money for reconstruction and/or are forgiving Iraqi debt.
This would essentially mean they are paying their own way in Iraq - or you could say that this policy doubles the effectiveness of U.S. aid to Iraq. We give a French contractor a dollar to build something for Iraq, but the French government has to forgive a dollar of Iraqi debt to get it.
Proper stick, proper carrot, and fair to the Canadians (who opposed the war with Iraq, but have troops in Afghanistan and are raising money for reconstruction in Iraq).
Or so it would seem by the legislation being drafted and passed on Capitol Hill lately. Sullivan links to this article by Steve Chapman which includes these salient facts:
In fact, economists Laurence Kotlikoff and Jagadeesh Gokhale say that a typical man reaching age 65 today will get a net windfall of more than $70,000 over his remaining years. A luckless 25-year-old, by contrast, can count on paying $322,000 more in payroll taxes than he will ever get back in benefits.
Is anyone else astounded by those numbers? I am! Both my parents are boomers and I love them very much, yet I will never consider it right or moral for their generation to assume a right to whatever they want while I PAY FOR IT!!! The title of Sullivan's post is "Robbers-Boomers", I'm guessing it's an allusion to Ayn Rand's "Looters-Moochers" in Atlas Shrugged. The description is very apt I'm afraid. The tax burden that will be levied upon the head of my generation in order to pay for the desires of boomers is staggering. To be quite honest, I'm not sure I'm willing to pay it. In fact the baby boomers of America beeter pary that the estimated 80 million Americans aged 10-30 are willing to pay for it. That demographic group is large enough to create it owns waves in 20 years. So to put it in perspective: Yes, the retired population will more than double in the next 20 years and the baby boomers are trying to set themselves up for it. Those 80 million people who are in my generational tribe will also be hitting some big milestones in 20 years and we'll be showing up in larger numbers to the polling booths, which means that the Boomers had better tread lightly are they may find themselves voted back to the nursing home before they collect all of the "blood money."
The Beginning of the end for the EU? I don't think so, but it quite possibly is the beginning of the end for France and Germany who have piddled themselves into non-relevance.
(Written by Joseph Horan)