Wednesday, June 5, 2013

The Reverse New Deal: Cut Cancer Research Funding

(WPA poster, image courtesy of the Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division.)

During the New Deal, there was a concerted effort to step up the fight against cancer and other illnesses.

Today, however, due to the "sequester" budget cuts, the National Cancer Institute will receive less funding, which will result in less patient clinical work and fewer research grants. The National Institutes of Health--the umbrella agency over the National Cancer Institute and other offices--is having $1.7 billion removed from its budget, likely "stalling progress on cancer drugs, research for a universal flu vaccine and treatments for both common and rare diseases."

Meanwhile, it has been estimated that America has lost over $3 trillion (yes, that's a "t") in tax revenue since 2001, due largely to tax evasion by the very wealthy. See analysis here.

So, over $3 trillion lost to tax evasion, but we have to cut medical research because, y'know, "we can't afford it."

Welcome to the Reverse New Deal.

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