Those not outraged aren't paying attention

Have people stopped reading? Are Republican heads simply stuck in the sand? Simply put, there are enough facts out there now that even hardcore Bush supporters should be at least taking a look at them before the upcoming election in November.

First, I am at a loss to understand "Support our Troops" side by side with "Bush 04." Who hasn't read that Bush et al have cut veterans' pay and benefits? Look it up if you think it isn't true. I work at the VA hospital in Seattle - guess what? We have a hiring freeze on. If a VA employee leaves, no one takes his/her place. Do the math - more work/less people to do it and the veteran is the one that loses the service.

In addition, has no one read that Halliburton subsidiaries in Iraq (providing housing, food and combat gear to our troops) have been overcharging the U.S. government for these supplies? Dick Cheney's pet is padding the bill for troop essentials to line his pockets. How low is that?

Second (speaking of lining pockets), who here is better off economically? I am a single mother, no child support, making less than $32K per year. I have a mortgage that eats up more than half of each month's paycheck. My health costs have skyrocketed, cost of living has increased as well and I haven't received a raise in three years. Anyone else feeling the same pinch?

In the past four years (Bush administration), health care costs have increased 60 percent! (I guess I should be grateful I have it at all - currently, 5 million more people are uninsured than were last year.) Unemployment has skyrocketed due in large part to "outsourcing." (What a nice way of saying that this administration would rather ship American jobs overseas so sweatshop children can contribute to the Billionaire's Club.)

We American workers are just asking too damn much - you know: paychecks on which we can actually survive, health care we can actually afford and maybe even a retirement package? Bush isn't even giving us the opportunity for overtime pay, despite the fact so many of us are sliding back no matter how much we trim the family budget.

Schools. Teachers are underpaid, classrooms are overcrowded and programs are being cut (I do know - my sister is a high-school teacher in the area, and her English department can't afford books for the class).

No wonder so many of our kids are doing so poorly. Billions for war; bake sales for books. Education sure doesn't sound like a priority issue with this administration either (However, the good news is that if schools agree to the "No Child Left Behind," they get some funding, so lockers can be searched and drug dogs can sniff out contraband ibuprofen). I thought the act meant that no child in America would be without access to food, health care and education. I am such an idiot.

There's more, of course: environment, civil rights restrictions, more government interference under the misnomer "Patriot Act;" intrusion of religion into state and government, the continued stonewalling of release of various records and reports by this administration, tax breaks for the rich, the bloodbath in Iraq despite Bush's promise that the violence had ended long ago and "democracy is on the way."

What? Iraq is a killing field and if people in this country truly support this war, it's time they were armed with the facts. There is no excuse anymore for ignorance.

So, despite no WMD, no Al Quida - 9/11 link, the escalating violence, the oil connections, the broken promises by Bush that the combat ended long ago, the unthinkable cost of this tragedy (and Bush's need for more and more) that continues to the tune of a billion dollars a week, if you still think that Bush is the man on whom to rely for another four years (gulp), go for it. Fly that flag.

However, get your facts straight. It's truly your patriotic duty.

Viki Hoyt


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