Saturday, May 18, 2013
The Reverse New Deal: Let the country burn
(Photo courtesy of the National Interagency Fire Center)
On Friday, May 17, the following was reported: "As firefighters took on a stubborn 3-day-old wildfire Friday in rough terrain north of Los Angeles, a second and more serious blaze broke out 30 miles away near Interstate 5, quickly surging to more than 500 acres, briefly threatening an elementary school and leading to the precautionary evacuation of nearly 20 homes." (See Frazier Park Fire: Firefighters Battle Flames & Terrain Of Mountains)
As a potentially record-setting wildfire season is forecast for America, the Annie E. Casey Foundation recently determined that "Nearly 6.5 million U.S. teens and young adults are neither in school nor in the workforce...". Meanwhile, 26 million Americans would like a full-time job but can't find one (http://www.njfac.org/).
So, how are we preparing for this wildfire season? By creating a new CCC and WPA, and offering fire-fighting and fire-prevention jobs to our nation's idle workforce?
Of course not.
We're preparing for more wildfires by cutting the budget of firefighting agencies and blocking legislation that would have created a CCC-type program for unemployed veterans.
Welcome to the Reverse New Deal, where the mega-wealthy are getting wealthier, job opportunities are few and far between, our natural areas burn, and we don't seem to care too much.
(CCC boys fighting a fire in the American west. Photo courtesy of the FDR Presidential Library and Museum.)