9/11 Health Care Bill: Compassion admirable, but future bills demand scrutiny

The Lame-Duck session of the 111th Congress was anything but lame as Congress was able to pass several major pieces of legislature before its adjournment.

In its wrap up session on Wednesday, December 22, the lame-duck Congress approved a nuclear arms treaty with Russia and a bill to aid Sept. 11th first responders. 

The 9/11 Health Care legislation is demanding of a review, as it is indicative of what must be done in the 112th Congress when legislating future spending bills. 

The debate preceding the 9/11 Health Care vote was fraught with emotion.  After all people were sick, some had even died, and financial help was called for.  Surely first responders were our heroes on 9/11?  Who could deny them payments for their heroic deeds?

Legislators were naturally anxious to pass the $8 billion, 9/11 Health Care bill so compensation could at last begin for the 71,000 first responders.

Even so, typical of monies handed out by the government, there have been no investigations as to why first responders are being compensated or whether their illnesses or deaths was even related to heroic action on 9/11.   

Thanks to Republican Senator Colburn of Oklahoma, the final bill was cut down to $4 billion.  Despite a 50% reduction in funding, first responders will still receive the best care in the world.  It is trial lawyers who will no longer be the beneficiaries of a $4 billion pot of gold of taxpayer money.

Whether talking about millions, billions and now trillion, eyes often gloss over when observing the number of zeros at the end of figures and what the zeros represent in dollar values.  But it makes no difference if the amount of money needed is in the millions, the billions, or the trillions, this nation does not have the money.  It is broke.  We must either print money or borrow it from China. 

As a compassionate nation and people, 9/11 first defenders do deserve to be remembered.  This leads to a question about future spending bills.  There is reason to believe that every spending bill in the 112th Congress could be cut by 40 or 50%..

Of more immediate concern is the money this nation is borrowing from China to fund its many programs which many Americans have come to believe they are entitled to.  

Consider this.  In several years the interest we pay China on our national debt will be more than this nation spends on its military.  Might it be that as today's super power, we are funding our successor?

There will come a time when our nation will reach a point of no return with its overhanging debt.  Like Ireland and Greece, the U.S.A. is heading the way of Ireland and Greece if she fails to get serious about her spending.  With it will come the failure of the great American experiment as perceived by our Founding Fathers.
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