Bush Budget Would Eliminate RIF

And who doesn't love RIF? Since 1966, it's been a dynamic program providing books to underprivileged children and encouraging them to read; now its very existence is threatened.

According to Kevin Howell of Publishers Weekly, RIF's CEO and president Carol Rasco tells us that if Bush’s budget is approved, 4.6 million children will not receive 16 million free books in 2009. RIF has been funded by Congress and six Administrations without interruption since 1975. It is the oldest and largest children’s and family nonprofit literacy organization in the U.S.

Here's the website to take action on this issue: RIF Support.

WWLauraD?

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Go to the library

Every federal program sounds nice. Free books for kids. Problem is there are not free. The taxpayers pay for them. The taxpayers also pay for school libraries and public libraries. If the kids want books go to the library and let's have one less federal program.

Finally

The private sector has more often than not,been less capable of actually doing these things as well as the government has.

Social Security is still around, but many pension plans, which were not forced on the private sector (quite the opposite, the private sector asked for the government to allow them to offer DEFERRED compensation, in the form of pensions and health insurance, rather than cold hard cash to their workers, during World War II, because of the shortage of workers. Yet it was the private sector that failed to plan well enough to keep up their end of the bargain. Workers accepted lower wages, based on the employers promises to provide them income later in life. This was not a government mandate, but an arrangement freely offered by the private sector.

Government, if subject to the same rules of competition on an equal footing with the private sector ALWAYS outperforms the private sector.

There are many such situations in which this occurs (prisoners in federal prison can choose to work at a very reduced wage, and the work THEY do is so good that private businesses will use those services rather than non-government services...no one FORCES the prisoners to work these programs, it is voluntary)

Center for Disease Control always outperforms the private sector when it comes to finding tests and innoculations for diseases.

In fact, the health care industry would be back in the Stone Age without federally funded research (about 95 percent of all medical research is federally funded and over 135,000 bits of research a year are federally funded... if the taxpayers got to profit from their investments, they would be rather wealthy)

federal program

I would rather have one less federal program that hurts innocent people (we have several of those) and give the little kiddies their books. RIF is very simply a priority and the reason that our country has a reputation in the forefront of humanitarian programs.

Not all school/public libraries are equal

Anonymous above writes:
"The taxpayers also pay for school libraries and public libraries. If the kids want books go to the library and let's have one less federal program."

The problem is, not all school and public libraries in this country are equal. Some inner city schools don't even have a library, or at most an outdated "reading room" without a professional librarian. Some urban library branches aren't as nice as those in surrounding suburbs. Created back in 1966, it would seem RIF was created to help address some of these real, existing regional inequalities, targeting the underserved, as it says on their website.

Correct.

Not all communities have the same levels of library service, and there is an extremely lon history of the govenrment and the citizens giving education, literacy, etc a higher priority than the items that have only recently become a massively large portion of the budget. Those "non essentials" were not even considered important enough to be made permanent until the 1950's Publically funded education, libraries, literacy as a function of government go back as early as 1643.

Federal Waste

Anytime you move money from the federal government there is an immediate 10-20% waste of the money just to oversee how it is distributed. I am not just against this RIF program I am against almost all federal programs. Health care? My take is have the state do it or nothing. Programs like RIF? Each state looks out for their own kids.

Or have corporations help and leave the feds out of it. Cheerios has a first book program where they give away books with boxes of Cheerios. That is a win/win kid gets a book and a relatively healthy breakfast. How about encouraging McDonalds to give out books with Happy Meals instead of garbage plastic toys?

If the local school and public libraries are not adequate work on fixing them instead of trying to use a federal band-aid program that does not give the bang for the buck that could be gotten if these problems were handled at the state or city level.

Federal Programs

Yes, some federal programs are a waste. But, when you consider that 53% of the 2008 federal budget goes directly to the Pentagon, and another 20-25% goes towards other departments in order to supplement defense programs, you are left with about 25% of the US Fed governement's budget for everything else.

Half of that goes to pay Social Security payments and Medicare, which are totally self-funding, so much so that 90% of the federal debt, to various trust-based government programs, is owed back to the federal government because it has been borrowed to pay for defense-dept programs that DO NOT pay for themselves.

The largest, single source of waste in the federal government is that, even if our government cut *every other program*, it would have to raise taxes or borrow to run the defense and policing functions of government.

One of the biggest baldface lies that right wingers promulgate is the massive-expense-and-waste-of-entitlement-programs lie. They pay for themselves. Even when our government was running US agricultural subsidies, it made money.

Corporations have shown themselves to be dismal failures at running any sort of public-benefit education, mass transit, etc. Privitization has been tried and has failed. In NYC, the subways and the bus system, the local trains were all, originally, owned privately. During WWII, the private sector abandoned them because, if they charged enough to turn a profit, all but the minimum use that the public needed for those services were eliminated. Thus, ridership dropped due to expense and companies (corporations) abandoned mass transit services, and begged the NYC and the feds to take them over.

RIF is a government program with far more benefits than things like the wasted offensive wars that the US has engaged in in the interests of large corporations and in ways that would never benefit the average taxpayer who supports and pays for them.

The Oil President was supposed to cut the price of gasoline, according to some who raved about him, the first MBA President. On the day Bush was put into office in 2001, the price of gas, nationally, on average, was $1.21/gallon.

I rest my case.

Apples :: Oranges

Your arguments are absurd. Comparing military spending to a small program that gives grants to a private organization to give books to kids is absurd.

There is a need to economize, and I don't think that spending my tax dollars for giving books to kids is a good idea. The government should tax us, and spend that money on essential programs, and frankly RIF is not essential.

However it is important and I think the work they do is important as well for many reasons including providing free books, buying those $20MM+ worth of books and keeping people employed, and simply supporting the GDP.

However non-essential programs should be funded voluntarily. If RIF is removed from the budget I'll happily send them a check for $20. Just don't tax me for it. The more money I can keep from the taxman the more I am free to do with what I wish.

I have read the past few years of 990s for RIF at Guidestar.org. It looks fairly well managed and it seems they spend their funds wisely. They probably could be based in Dubuque rather than DC to save some money, and it seems that some of the salaries are a bit high for a non-profit, but frankly if I lived in DC that is what I would be paid so perhaps I am asking a bit much by thinking they should be paid less.

I've averaged the last 3 years of 990s for RIF and they spend > 90% of their income on program costs so that is certainly an acceptable level in my book.

However rambling posts about various federal spending are simply not worth reading. Federal spending should be limited to that which is essential, and RIF is not essential no matter how you look at it. Valuable, yes...essential, no.

Right wingers always attempt

Right wingers always attempt to do this sort of dishonest attempt to separate one kind of government spending from another but the massive amount of waste in that occurs in military spending would more than pay for programs that right wingers think government should not pay for. The largest drain on the U.S. economy is the military, and even Eisenhower pointed that out before he left office.

Plus an illiterate and inept nation produces an illiterate and inept military.

Which is why we have not been able to win a war since World War II, without the more literate Europeans assisting us.

Dollar for dollar programs like RIF add provide more direct profit to the economy than the entire military budget does. America has been losing its edge because cuts to education and similar funding has resulted in an illiterate work force.

Which is why companies like Toyota pulled factories out of the American South and sent them into Canada, then built totally automated factories in the South, because they could no longer rely on an American workd force that could not read.

He proved 100 percent correct. The military industrial complex would find "communists under the beds" and when they were gone "Muslims under the doormat", anything to insure that larger and larger portions of the budget went to more and more useless sectors of the economy.

The only reason that the United States had the BEST military in the world 30 years ago was that it had the best educated, and that was public not private education.

Now in Iraq a war has gone on for longer than World War II, when the United States was facing the worlds military superpower, Germany, and trashed their butts, but now is being bogged down by a bunch of Afghanis who are basically still using some World War I equipment.

Next thing just because a right winger thinks its importants doesnt make it so.

I would much rather see the military budget and waste be scrutinized and cut than see RIF cut. Its my tax money as well.

The price of oil is directly linked to the War in Iraq, any economist will tell you so. Any hiccup in the middle east sends the prices of oil up, and the Iraq War has not just been a hiccup, its been a five year long belch, with no relief in sight.

The fact is that it is absolutely and 100 percent neccessary for the government to educate and create a literate work force and NO one is more behind this idea than corporate America, because they have shown they are totally unwilling to pay for it themselves, and if the govenrment does not, they take their jobs to countries that WILL pay for such literacy programs.

India and China do it, and India and China are where the high tech jobs requiring a literate population to perform have all gone.

Courtesy of the righ wing political agenda.

I guess you didn't get those free books

Right wingers always attempt to do this sort of dishonest attempt to separate one kind of government spending from another but the massive amount of waste in that occurs in military spending would more than pay for programs that right wingers think government should not pay for. The largest drain on the U.S. economy is the military, and even Eisenhower pointed that out before he left office.

Dishonest? It seems quite clear to me that the defense budget is separate from grants to non-profit social program agencies. If we can eliminate the ‘massive amount of waste that occurs in military spending’ that you insist exists we can keep our money in our pockets to spend as we see fit, even by donating to RIF should we so desire.

The largest segment of federal spending is not the military as you suggest, but social programs. As noted here (with easy to understand graphs), or if you prefer something from a more progressive source you may wish to see it at Wikipedia

So if you wish to put it in your terms, the largest drain on the U.S. economy is social programs spending and spending on people who can’t or won’t make themselves self sufficient but who rely on the assistance of the U.S. taxpayer.

Plus an illiterate and inept nation produces an illiterate and inept military.

I find that it produces a barely literate, and innumerate fast food worker, or unemployed lay-about. Throwing money, or free books at the unmotivated will not solve any social problem. The only solution is to motivate them to support themselves. Why do you think people come from Mexico to work in the US? why H1B visa holders come from all corners of the globe? Why do you think people risk their lives in leaking boats leaving from Cuba to come to the United States? It is not to sign up for our social programs, it is because we are indeed the land of opportunity.

Which is why we have not been able to win a war since World War II, without the more literate Europeans assisting us.

Which more literate Europeans would that be, the Andorrans, the Finns, Georgians perhaps? Did you mean the fine military of the Holy See, or the massive defense forces of Liechtenstein or Luxembourg or perhaps the fighting Norwegians. Since those are the only nations in Europe that have a higher literacy rate than the 99% literacy rate in the US. Greenland also has a 100% literacy rate, but we all know that is in North America and not Europe.

Dollar for dollar programs like RIF add provide more direct profit to the economy than the entire military budget does. America has been losing its edge because cuts to education and similar funding has resulted in an illiterate work force.

You can’t possibly believe that the economic stimulus of RIF is greater than that of the industries related to defense. Free books didn’t help you much.

Which is why companies like Toyota pulled factories out of the American South and sent them into Canada, then built totally automated factories in the South, because they could no longer rely on an American workd force that could not read.

Where did you come up with this nugget? Toyota North America has five assembly plants in the U.S. with a sixth under construction in Mississippi. Toyota employs more than thirty thousand people in it US manufacturing operations. In contrast there is one Toyota plant in Canada , with a second under construction. Toyota Canada employs slightly more than 4000 people. These figures are available in Toyota’s SEC filings.

He proved 100 percent correct. The military industrial complex would find "communists under the beds" and when they were gone "Muslims under the doormat", anything to insure that larger and larger portions of the budget went to more and more useless sectors of the economy.

He? He who? Eisenhower? This paragraph is complete nonsense and frankly insulting to any number of people.

The only reason that the United States had the BEST military in the world 30 years ago was that it had the best educated, and that was public not private education.

The US still has the best military in the world despite what the teachers unions and social programs have done to public education.

Now in Iraq a war has gone on for longer than World War II, when the United States was facing the worlds military superpower, Germany, and trashed their butts, but now is being bogged down by a bunch of Afghanis who are basically still using some World War I equipment.

World War II was six years and eleven days long. It started in September 1939 and the final surrender in Asia was on September 12, 1945. We have recently passed the five year mark in Iraq and active offensive action ended quite some time ago.

Do you have even the most basic grasp of history? You apparently think World War II was the US against the Germans, when in fact it was much more than that…hence the term World War. You are also confusing the Afghan conflict and with Iraq.

Next thing just because a right winger thinks its importants doesnt make it so.

Again another barely understandable sentence with no apparent point. You have a computer it must have spelling and grammar correction functions. Even if you are barely literate you can give the impression that you are a savant.

I would much rather see the military budget and waste be scrutinized and cut than see RIF cut. Its my tax money as well.

Well then if might behoove you to contact your elected representatives. The RIF page has a link for that purpose.

The price of oil is directly linked to the War in Iraq, any economist will tell you so. Any hiccup in the middle east sends the prices of oil up, and the Iraq War has not just been a hiccup, its been a five year long belch, with no relief in sight.

Another paragraph you can’t truly believe. Do you have no comprehension of commodity futures or commodity pricing. Perhaps this link may prove educational. You may also wish to read this article from the IHT regarding the growth in the Indian and Chinese oil markets and their impact on crude oil prices.

The fact is that it is absolutely and 100 percent neccessary for the government to educate and create a literate work force and NO one is more behind this idea than corporate America, because they have shown they are totally unwilling to pay for it themselves, and if the govenrment does not, they take their jobs to countries that WILL pay for such literacy programs.

Yet another imponderably inchoate paragraph; I think you may be saying that corporate America is not willing to pay for public education. Then you opine that they take their jobs to countries will pay for such programs. Frankly corporations have a duty to their shareholders to take their jobs to where their operations are the most economically advantageous. While a skilled workforce is indeed important, almost any location will have a large enough pool of applicants such that acceptable employees can be found. Note your previous albeit erroneous example of Toyota. Some of the factories are located in more rural areas that are historically less literate. However they offer a more advantageous economic climate for Toyota for a myriad of reasons.

India and China do it, and India and China are where the high tech jobs requiring a literate population to perform have all gone.

Signal to noise ratio: of course you can find highly skilled individuals in India as it has a population of 1.12 billion, and China with a population of 1.32 billion. Contrast that with the US with a population of just over 300MM. Also the cost of doing business is significantly less offshore. It has nothing to do with the skill sets of US workers, it has to do with being more economical to have code written in Bangalore as opposed to Birmingham.

Courtesy of the righ wing political agenda.
Why did you even bother ?

Your arguments are unfounded, and from emotion not reason.

not really

one, education and literacy was considered a permanent priority in this area since 1643, while the other was not until about 1950. Before that, your "necessity" was only created temporarily and always disbanded when there was no longer an immediate need. It was considered a waste, and early Americans did not trust the concept of permanence in that arena.

actually yours are founded on an emotional attachment

to what is basically propaganda.

China, and India in particular are much poorer nations that the United States, yet they still are producing a more literate and educated class of people.

There is no "signal to noise" ratio at all.

The economic problems in the U.S. can be directly traced and have a positive corellation to cuts in funding to education, elimination of literacy programs, or providing less than adequate funding to them

The downturn can be directly dated to 1980. Before hand the U.S. was a net exporter with a positive trade relationship with foreign nations. Now we are a basically one of the worlds largest debtor nations.

This is the breakdown of the 2009 Budget

Current Military
$965 billion:
• Military Personnel $129 billion
• Operation & Maint. $241 billion
• Procurement $143 billion
• Research & Dev. $79 billion
• Construction $15 billion
• Family Housing $3 billion
• DoD misc. $4 billion
• Retired Pay $70 billion
• DoE nuclear weapons $17 billion
• NASA (50%) $9 billion
• International Security $9 billion
• Homeland Secur. (military) $35 billion
• State Dept. (partial) $6 billion
• other military (non-DoD) $5 billion
• “Global War on Terror” $200 billion [We added $162 billion to the last item to supplement the Budget’s grossly underestimated $38 billion in “allowances” to be spent in 2009 for the “War on Terror,” which includes the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan]

Past Military,
$484 billion:
• Veterans’ Benefits $94 billion
• Interest on national debt (80%) created by military spending, $390 billion

Human Resources
$789 billion:
• Health/Human Services
• Soc. Sec. Administration
• Education Dept.
• Food/Nutrition programs
• Housing & Urban Dev.
• Labor Dept.
• other human resources.

General Government
$304 billion:
• Interest on debt (20%)
• Treasury
• Government personnel
• Justice Dept.
• State Dept.
• Homeland Security (15%)
• International Affairs
• NASA (50%)
• Judicial
• Legislative
• other general govt.

Physical Resources
$117 billion:
• Agriculture
• Interior
• Transportation
• Homeland Security (15%)
• HUD
• Commerce
• Energy (non-military)
• Environmental Protection
• Nat. Science Fdtn.
• Army Corps Engineers
? Fed. Comm. Commission
• other physical resources

These figures are from an analysis of detailed tables in the “Analytical Perspectives” book of the Budget of the United States Government, Fiscal Year 2009. The figures are federal funds, which do not include trust funds — such as Social Security — that are raised and spent separately from income taxes. What you pay (or don’t pay) by April 15, 2008, goes to the federal funds portion of the budget. The government practice of combining trust and federal funds began during the Vietnam War, thus making the human needs portion of the budget seem larger and the military portion smaller.

Past military” represents veterans’ benefits plus 80% of the interest on the debt.

*********************************************************

The portions that are considered "unnecesary" are smaller than the ones deemed "necessary"

To put it more simply

Before 1984, there was no Social Security trust fund. Every cent that went into it went out to pay for Social Security and Medicare, as they were designed to. The tax was only raised as the need to spend more went up.

In 1984, legislation was passed to create a surplus that would totally keep Social Security and Medicare solvent well into the baby boom retirement.

However immediately, the government started borrowing from this trust fund to cover items that were, by design, supposed to be funded by income taxes and other taxes and tariffs. Basically those "entitlement programs" more than paid for themselves, while the other programs had to "borrow" in order to keep functional.

More than fifty percent of the federal debt has been borrowed from various retirement trust funds, like Social Security, federal railroad workers pensions, etc.
The crisis was caused by borrowing from them, in order to provide income tax cuts that should have been paid for by those income taxes.

Lets make tax contributions to the military

Voluntary. The key is that your apples and oranges defines what is essential as totally different than what I define as essential. The vast majority of military spending is largely non essential because it does not lend in any way shape or form to defense, but is largely offensive in nature, exists to protect the interests of a very small and elite portion of the population and does little to protect the interests of the average citizen.

You define and offensive military force as essential, I dont. I would prefer having an educated work force and military, you don not think this is essential.

But the loss of jobs to other countries has less to do with Unions and more to do with cuts to public education than any other single cause. American workers are no longer up to the task of performing high tech work.

It would simply be cheaper to spend money on alternatives to oil, than to have wasted the tens of trillions of dollars trying to protect our access to petroleum as well as to guard the sea lanes it must travel over to get from there to here.

Any sane economist will tell you that having the sources of energy and materials used to run your economy local, and in your own hands, is the best way to maintain an economy and limit the cost to the taxpayers to do so.

What?

What does the price of gas have to do with the RIF program?

What the government chooses to consider "essential'

expenditures, and what is considered "non essential" is very much related to the RIF program. Basically most of the governments spending is military spending and the largest percentage of that spending is to provide a very small number of people with access to the sources of gasoline. When you factor in the cost of the military expense to protect access to gasoline, you end up with Americans paying more per gallon than any other nation on earth. Its just that a large percentage of that cost is hidden in the income tax. Trillions have been wasted in keeping Americans using the fuel to power the last single almost completely unchanged technology invented in the 19th Century.

RIF is certainly far more essential than the cockamie effort to protect the petroluem industy and those who profit from it. They are being protected from any alternatives which would make the nation more self sufficient when it comes to energy sources. Largely the money spent on protecting access to petroleum could have easily created viable local alternatives, environmentally friendly or not, but certainly far less wasteful of the taxpayers money. Developing an autombile capable of running on something other than gasoline is a considerably less complex project than putting men on the moon, keeping them alive during the trip, and getting them back alive. Certainly it would have taken this nation the same amount of time to do so as it did to get to the moon, if the same degree of commitment to it existed and was encouraged by the government.

Carter got it right almost 30 years ago. It has been far more costly to remain dependent on oil, than it would have been to become independent. It was the flip side of American ingenuity that has created this current situation in the Middle East, and gasoline that is eating up larger and larger percentages of the average persons income.

Perhaps had more money been directed to RIF and other literacy programs, American ingenuity would have gained the upper hand, rather than American stupidity. It is certainly stupid to base an entire economy on an energy source that you have to waste considerable energy on by shipping it halfway across the world in oder to use it. Nothing dumber. Certainly a president who cuts literacy enhancing programs like RIF is banking on keeping Americans stupid enough to keep them from thinking about running cars on stuff that has to be shipped close to ten thousand miles, which is a large portion of the cost of the stuff to begin with. Eliminating RIF puts 2 points in the American Stupidity column, and removes a good deal more from the American ingenuity column.

Largely, the greatest inventiveness, the greatest creativity, those who have done the most to enhance America and its economy and status in the world have been the product of the public education system, and people who have benefited from public literacy programs. There have been exceptions, but I agree with Jefferson that the wealthy, and the product of elite and exclusive private schools largely are "All Body and no Brain" It is really rather rare that they contribute much at all.

RIF is simply another aspect of those public programs that produced some of the greatest minds this nation has had in the last hundred years, or longer.

Source

Got a source for this: On the day Bush was put into office in 2001, the price of gas, nationally, on average, was $1.21/gallon.

The Democratic Policy website says that gas was around $1.47
http://democrats.senate.gov/dpc/dpc-printable.cfm?doc_name=fs-109-2-113

Adjusted for inflation that $1.47 is $1.79 in 2008 dollars. So gas has gone up $1.20 in 7 years. In that seven years several million Chinese and Indians have bought cars. American sheeple keep buying SUVs and using more of the supply than needed and somehow this is all George Bush's fault?

I filled my tank up at 99.9

I filled my tank up at 99.9 a gallon.

The democratic figures were the average for all grades of gas. The average price for regular around the nation was 1.21 on inauguration day 2001.

The Iraq War is cited as the primary reason for the increase in oil prices, though ribght wingers have attempted to foist this off on the Chinese and Indians, the fact is that their consumption has only slightly increased. The percentage of the worlds oil used by the United States has remained rock solid.

Or as the EIA cites

As of October 29, 2001, the national average retail price of regular gasoline was $1.235 per gallon, its lowest level since November 8, 1999 (Figure 1). The average price has fallen 29 cents in 6 weeks since September 17, with further declines perhaps to come. The sharpest decline has been in the Midwest (Petroleum Administration for Defense District 2), where the average has dropped 57 cents in 8 weeks since Labor Day (September 3). Additionally, this decline comes on the heels of a 33-cent drop in the national average in 10 weeks from Memorial Day through August 6, interrupted only by a brief 17-cent rise in August. In total, the national average retail gasoline price has fallen nearly 48 cents from its peak on May 14. This is already the widest one-year range in retail prices since EIA began its weekly survey in 1990, and it=s all occurred in the past 5 months.

Although U.S. consumers are undoubtedly pleased at this reduction in driving costs, many are puzzled at the speed and magnitude of the decrease, and wonder when gasoline prices will rise again, and whether they will increase as quickly as they have recently fallen. While the Energy Information Administration (EIA) can=t predict with certainty what the future may hold, there are a number of factors behind gasoline prices that can help to explain this year=s rapid price changes, and may in turn give us some indications about which way they will go next.

This was BEFORE the invasion of Iraq, AFTER 9/11.

The increase in oil prices exactly parallels the invasion of Iraq, and events since.

As I said

The best investment this country can make is in its education

Right wingers simply are not the only tax payers.

I want my tax dollars spend in the most effective way possible, and a bloated military that wastes money on technologies that either prove to be useless, ot in fact never get used for defense at all is in fact, a large waste of taxpayer dollars.

The most recent waste has been in the F22 fighter, designed to be used for only one purpose. Against the Soviet Union, military fighters. 30 years in development, close to a trillion dollars wasted on something that was never used, and finally scrapped because it was not needed.

Lastly

Their were publically funded and legally required levels of public education in the United States before there was a permanent standing military force. In fact the first public schools were creates in the colonies, over 130 years before the revolutionary war, and nearly 200 years before the first permanent military forces were mandated by law.

The history of this nation has, until recently, placed a higher premium on publically funded education and literacy than they have on military force. In fact it is only in the last 60 years that the military had had a larger budget than education.

I am not surprised though, because recent studies have shown that the current graduates of American schools and universities are less literate than any generation in this nations history.

The high school graduates of the World War II Americans forces were better educated than any since Reagan started massively cutting funding to education. (They didnt have to put their draftees and enlisted men through GED programs before Reagan...)

Right wingers have another tendency. It is to rewrite history, as most right wingers do.

It is the massive military budget since Reagan which is the anomaly in American History. It has been considered less essential than many other things, including publically financed education for most of this nations history.

Google translation? Babelfish?

I read the first sentence of this and I think you may be writing in a foreign language and using automatic translation utility. This might explain your ignorance of US History. Are you one of the Chinese guards escorting the Olypmic torch?

Oh, and you are wrong, as least as far as I read I gave up after the first few sentences.

Enjoy your delusions.

Nope enjoy yours

Public education and literacy were mandated by law as early as 1643, while the item you suggest is a "priority" was not created as a permanent responsibility until the 1950's. Education and literacy has about 300 years more precedent as a priority for government.

Birdie is right

There is little point in this discussion as you simply prevaricate.

You provide no supporting documentation nor authoratative sources. If you were a librarian you would understand the need for authority.

Since I cannot refute your opinion, it is indeed a valid opinion as is everyone's no matter how obtuse, I must leave you to your mental autoeroticism.

enough

you two!!

Arabic Books- RIF in Iraq

A better idea is to take some of the money in the Iraq budget and have it invested in some book publishing houses in Iraq. Then write and print a number of children's books in Arabic to be given away in a RIF program in Iraq and to other Arab nations. Encouraging children to read in Iraq is a much needed, and would give a boost to a new, good, industry in that war-torn country.

R. Lee Hadden (These are my own opinions!)

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