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Cockeyed Priorities

While the Democrats grow excited at the prospect of a trillion-dollar health-care bill, a bit of reality seeps in. This report explains:

The federal budget deficit tripled to a record $1.4 trillion for the 2009 fiscal year that ended last week, congressional analysts said Wednesday. The Congressional Budget Office estimate, while expected, is bad news for the White House and its allies in Congress as they press ahead with health care overhaul legislation that could cost $900 billion over the next decade.

There is an almost total disconnect between the real issues facing the country — a growing nuclear threat from Iran, a floundering war effort in Afghanistan, a bulging debt, a falling dollar, and near double-digit unemployment — and the focus of the Congress and the president. The Obama administration either doesn’t know what to do about the growing list of critical issues or doesn’t have the interest in addressing them. So it has manufactured a “health-care crisis” that now absorbs nearly all of Washington’s political energy.

Afghanistan is an afterthought, only climbing onto the White House to-do list once it wound up on the front pages of major newspapers. The administration is stalling on Iran, biding time and showing little if any interest in moving ahead with sanctions. And rather than focusing on job creation, the administration and Congress are supporting a tax- and mandate-stuffed health-care bill that surely will not improve the hiring environment.

The president plainly wants one thing — a massive government takeover of health care. All other priorities — straightening out our war strategy included — take a backseat. And if the public doesn’t really want what he is pushing, if the president’s agenda exacerbates the real crises (unemployment and  the budget deficit), then any “victory” will prove to be an empty one. And the real crises will remain. At some point maybe we’ll get around to those.


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