By Matt Murray
As everyone already knows the President has released his budget and the masses have begun to revolt. The main issue of the revolt is cuts to Social Security. The cuts at face value appear minor but will result in a significantly lower Social Security check for those who are already struggling to stay afloat.
Many organizations including the AFL-CIO have come out against the Presidents budget and specifically the ‘chained CPI’. Today a New Hampshire based organization has come out opposing cutting Social Security as well as proposed a solution.
The first of two statements come from Will Hopkins, Executive Director of NH Peace Action. Hopkins is an Iraq war veteran from Company Cco3-172nd INF NHANG based in Iraq from March 2004 to February 2005.
Left Melissa Bernardin, Right Will Hopkins, at Senator Ayotte’s office on 2-27-12 calling to ‘Pull the Pork’ on Pentagon Spending
“Since 2001, Pentagon spending has skyrocketed, more than doubling over the decade. We spend tens of billions more on the Pentagon today than we did during either Vietnam or the Cold War, even adjusting for inflation. At a time when almost no one in Washington agrees on anything, almost everyone agrees it’s time to cut Pentagon bloat. Military leaders, national security experts — even some forward-looking Pentagon contractors — agree that reductions are necessary and coming.
“Reshaping the bloated Pentagon budget to fit our actual needs saves money to be invested in other priorities right here at home, and it can be done without jeopardizing our troops or our safety. As a veteran whose boots were on the ground in Iraq, I resent that members of Congress are even considering gutting programs that benefit the American people, in order to keep outdated and unnecessary Pentagon programs and bloated CEO salaries. This should be an easy choice. Congress needs to Pull the Pork from the Pentagon instead of exploring options that hurt the pocketbook of American veterans.”
Echoing Hopkins is Melissa Bernardin, Coordinator for NH Citizens Alliance’s Campaign to End Pentagon Waste.
“There is absolutely no reason why Congress should even consider cutting benefits for seniors and veterans when there are clear examples of Pentagon waste that could be addressed first, like the amendment to eliminate the ‘missile to nowhere’ that Senator Kelly Ayotte introduced.
“It’s time for Congress to commit once and for all to ending Pentagon waste and instead shift that spending into housing, health care, education, and infrastructure repair. We are calling for a fundamental restructuring of our priorities so that we can pay for programs that create jobs and protect our communities.”
U.S. Senator Kelly Ayotte introduced and secured passage of an amendment in late March to eliminate the “missile to nowhere” program – a weapons system that the Army will never procure. Advocates say it is one of many examples of Pentagon waste that could be eliminated to allow Congress to instead use the budget in a more appropriate way for domestic priorities.
According to a recent Forbes article, several veterans’ organizations have come out against chained CPI, including Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW), Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA), AMVETs and the Blinded Veterans Association. U.S. Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter was one of 107 House Democrats who signed a Feb. 15 letter opposing benefit cuts to Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.