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I want to be a rock star

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    Although many songs have a social message, one that really reasonated with me was a song titled "Lullaby", by Nickelback, whose best known song is "I want to be a rock star".

    I happened to stumble on "Lullaby" last night. By chance, the Washington Post had an article this morning about the economic decline of Japan, and I realized that there was a connection between the article and the song. If you've got some extra time on you hands, you may want to read the explanation posted below:

    Buried in the article is the fact that the maternal mortality rate in America is higher than any other developed country, and rising. The problem could be fixed by an increase in Federal money for programs like California's Maternity Mortality Review Board, but there's a reason that the problem is unlikely to get fixed.

    The majority of the women who die during childbirth are African-American and/or on Medicaid. Although Trump's 2019 budget DOES allot an 11% increase to Health and Human Services, the budget cuts 14% from Housing and Urban Development, which means that the problem for pregnant black women is going to get worst. The SNAP program is being cut by $17.2 billion, and $166 million is being cut from the Food for Progress aid program.

    There are MANY misplaced priorities in the budget:

    The State Department is being cut by 29%, even though diplomacy is always cheaper than war.

    The EPA is being cut by 25%, even though an resulting increase in global warming will cost us a LOT more in the future

    The SBA is being cut by 25%, even though the majority of new jobs in this country are created by small businesses

    Transportation is being cut by 18%, even though the majority of our bridges have been given a rating of "D" by engineers

    Agriculture is being cut by 15%, even though Trump's tariffs are REALLY taking a toll on farmers

    Interior is being cut by 15%, even though we are far better served by pristine wilderness than oil wells

    Labor is being cut by 10%, even though Trump's supporters are the hardest hit in the current economy

    Education is being cut by 5%, even though the ONLY way our country can grow is by INVESTING in education (remember the GI bill?)

    Treasury is being cut by 3%, even though funding for the IRS should be increased so that we can collect MORE of the taxes that aren't being collected due to fraud - and Trump is far from the only guy who is not paying his fair share

    Justice is being cut by 1%, even though we need MORE talented attorneys to catch crime families like the Trumps

    Overall, the 2019 budget cuts spending from $22.7 billion to $19.2 billion, but that still won't solve our financial problem, since the 2017 "tax scam" will increase the deficit by $1.5 trillion over the next decade. If you think the "tax scam" will lead to an increase in revenue, that's "not exactly" the case, as the article below points out:

    To quote Forrest Gump, "that's all that I got so say"