The international community is in danger of repeating in Afghanistan the mistakes made in Iraq. Millions of Afghans have seen little material improvement in their lives since 2001, and most still live in desperate poverty.
Average life expectancy in Daikundi is 42 and one in five children dies before the age of five. Afghan children chew on mud they scratch from the walls of their homes to stave off hunger.
Close to half of US development assistance goes to the five biggest US contractors in the country. Too much money is lost to high salaries and living costs, non-Afghan resources and corporate profits. The overall cost of one expatriate consultant is about half a million dollars a year.
Roessler Backs Big Oil Over Working Families in State Budget
‘Oshkosh-Area’ Senator Again Sides with Special Interests Over Consumers
MADISON – Despite new record high gas prices, State Senator Carol Roessler said this week she doesn't think the big oil companies should have to give back a portion of their profits to Wisconsin motorists. Roessler told the Fond du Lac Reporter this week that she won't support a proposal to force big oil companies to share some of their multi-billion dollar profits with Wisconsin motorists.
"At a time when working families are paying as much as $100 for a tank of gas, Senator Roessler is digging in her heels and protecting the eye-popping profits of big oil instead of defending the pocketbooks of hard-working families,” said Joe Wineke, Chairman of the Democratic Party of Wisconsin.
Governor Doyle's budget proposes a modest assessment on Big Oil companies that amounts to only a sliver of what they make in Wisconsin. The measure is designed to curb the widespread price-gouging state consumers are seeing at the pump.
“This should be the last Memorial Day weekend where Big Oil is allowed to get away without paying its fair share in Wisconsin,” Wineke said. “If Carol Roessler and her Republican colleagues continue to side with the record high profits of Big Oil over Wisconsin consumers, it will be to their political peril.”
Gas is now selling for as much as $3.50 a gallon in the state – much higher than a year ago – despite the fact that crude oil prices are significantly lower than they were last May.
"Big Oil’s billionaire executives offer a new excuse every day as to why these gas prices are so high,” Wineke observed. “The reality is they're just inflating their already outrageous profit reports while politicians like Carol Roessler happily look the other way.”
Wineke noted that Roessler’s support of Big Oil may be tied to the relatively short drive she makes between the State Capitol and her home in Waunakee, while any other constituent would see much higher fuel bill for the 90-mile drive from Madison to the 18th Senate District.
“The ‘World’s Only Waunakee’ may be a short commute to the capitol, but I’d bet a few more trips up to Fond du Lac and Oshkosh and she'd better appreciate what working folks are paying at the pump right now,” Wineke concluded.
Doctors fighting universal coverage have been saving lives in their day jobs while costing lives with their lobbying.
... a child in Costa Rica born today is expected to live longer than an American child born today.
The U.S. now spends far more on medical care (more than $7,000 per person) than other nations, yet our infant mortality rate, maternal mortality rate and longevity are among the worst in the industrialized world. If we had as good a child mortality rate as France, Germany and Italy, we would save 12,000 children a year.
It is disgraceful that an American mother has almost three times the risk of losing a child as a mother in the Czech Republic.