This past week saw a flood of important reports from GAO. I’m going to post a selection of what I consider the most significant with the GAO summaries.
First, a 111 page report on another Bush-era failure – on Bush’s main claim – keeping us safe. What can keep us safer than poorly tested weapons?
Air Force ROTC cadet Mara Boyd pledged to uphold the principles of integrity, service before self, and excellence. But trying to adhere to those values not only unraveled a promising military career, it saddled Boyd with more than $30,000 in debt.
Boyd’s saga began in 2001, eight years after President Clinton signed into law the controversial “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, which bans openly gay, lesbian and bisexual people from serving in the U.S. military.
Poverty, unemployment, depression are all on our minds these days. It is almost a breath of fresh air to return to the good ol’ days of 2007 when poverty was off our national radar screen. Of course, that didn’t mean it wasn’t there. It was. In 2007, 37.3 million people, or 12.5 % of Americans, lived at or below the official poverty level. And, believe it or not, many of those people were able to be poor while also working. In fact, 7.5 million of us were in the ranks of the working poor.
Among unbossed’s focuses – or even, obsessions – as been privatization. You can find links to prior posts on this issue here.
It is a matter of great relief to see that we now have a president who does not have, as his first priority, selling off the country’s China on the cheap. There have been a number of executive orders and other strong statements from the Obama administration on this issue, laying the groundwork for comprehensive reform related to privatization and contracting out.
by gjohnsit, posted by permission
Last April the Bush Administration changed the rules so that the Federal Home Loan Banks could take a more active part in propping up the housing bubble.
The looming financial difficulties have not prevented the Bush administration from expanding the F.H.A.’s role to help ease the nation’s foreclosure crisis. Since September, more than 150,000 homeowners have refinanced through F.H.A. and officials hope that the number will increase to 400,000 by the end of the year.
In doing so, the FHLB dramatically increased their share of the overall mortgage market right when the market was collapsing.
Many in the Republican “base” found John McCain an outrage, his policy views and perspectives abhorrent, not least of which that he deigns to consider reality in stating that Global Warming is a serious issue meriting attention (even if his policy prescriptions aren’t enough).
Well, what does the Glorious Leader of the Republican Party have to say about this?
“Despite the hysterics of a few pseudo-scientists, there is no reason to believe in global warming.” Rush Limbaugh, 1993
Ah, words that could warm the cockles of even the cold heart of George “Will-ful Deceit” Will.
For years, people have asked why it is that employers are not required to post information about rights to organize unions in the workplace. Employers are required to post information about wages, toxic materials in the workplace, and other rights.
The omission of the most fundamental right of workers, under the National Labor Relations Act, the rights that are the source of power that has led to – and maintains the existence of – these other rights is glaring. It is a fundamental admission that at the core this country is anti-union. It is a statement that we think employers’ domains should be free of any incursion by unions. It is evidence that we as a people have not accepted the right of workers to organize.
GAO issued two reports today related to highways. The first tells us just how close our highways have come to being out of money. In fact, according to the report, at some brief periods over the past few months, the cupboard was indeed bare.
The second report deals with issues of the security of our basic infrastructure.
According to the introduction of a new study by the Pew Hispanic Center, Hispanics seem to have fallen off the radar screen in the new administration.