U.S. Moves to Restore Military Aid to Egypt, Rand Paul Does Not Approve

The Obama administration could soon resume sending military aid to Egypt as early as next week. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is expected to issue a waiver that would restore most, but not all of the $1.3 billion slated for the Egyptian government. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) supports resuming the aid, arguing it's needed for "a strong and stable Egypt." But this move would bypass Congress.

On December 23, 2011, President Obama signed the 2012 Consolidated Appropriations Act. This act makes military aid to Egypt conditional. The aid can only resume if the Secretary of State certifies that the Egyptian government is “implementing policies to protect freedom of expression, association, and religion, and due process of law.”

But the Egyptian government has made little progress since the overthrow of Hosni Mubarak. According to Amnesty International, the ruling military council has still not repealed the emergency laws implemented under Mubarak and has actually killed more than 100 protesters since October 2011. In addition, the military council has harassed over 400 non-government organizations (NGOs), including Freedom House and the National Democratic Institute, and even detained the Secretary of Transportation's son.

However, the certification process can be sidestepped if Secretary Clinton issues a waiver citing that the aid is necessary on national security grounds. Such a waiver is expected next week, and would then lead to most of the aid moving forward to Egypt.

Yesterday, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) and Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) issued a joint statement urging Secretary Clinton to delay the military aid:

A decision to waive the conditions on military aid would send the wrong message to the Egyptian government that U.S. taxpayers will subsidize the Egyptian military while it continues to oversee the crackdown on civil society and to commit human rights abuses.

The two outlined their criteria for deciding on the aid package:

We strongly recommend that you delay any decision on certification until domestic and foreign NGOs are allowed to operate freely in Egypt, laws prohibiting the NGOs from operating in Egypt are repealed, the case against Egyptian and international NGOs has been favorably resolved, property seized from the NGOs and their staff is returned, the United States Government is repaid all bail posted to secure the release of NGO staff, and the Egyptian government begins to respect the fundamental rights of its citizens and due process of law.

Military aid to Egypt has also made its way into the 2012 Republican primaries. In February 2011, former Senator Rick Santorum criticized Obama's support for democracy activists in Egypt, since he "sides with protesters" and "turned our backs" against Mubarak, an ally. Since then, Santorum has still backed the former dictator. During the GOP debate in Arizona on February 22, he even referred to Mubarak as "a friend of ours."

Meanwhile, Ron Paul has strongly opposed foreign aid. He even attacked Santorum as a "fake" conservative, since Santorum "voted to send billions, of our tax dollars, to dictators in North Korea and Egypt."

Reason.tv on Rand Paul.

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  • Almanian||

    *catching up, coming from "Friday 'Funnies'"*

    Anyone seen Whyte Injun today?

  • The Christmas Atheist||

    Not yet. Do you really wanna?

  • ||

    She went home to sob in her pillow. I keep telling you guys, make fun of her. Laugh at her. Yeah shits on the thread, but she is going to do that anyway. But it hurts her feelings and she leaves.

  • ||

    just the usual grief-troll.

  • ||

    So, we're setting the chess board for the Iranian kinetic military action?

  • BillT||

    Not sure how that figures. Iran's proxy is Syria, not including Hezbollah in Lebanon. This looks more like a preventative measure to keep the chaos in Libya and Northwest Africa from spreading East, from everything I've read.

  • ||

    that makes sense. my thought (not based on any deep thinking) was just that it would-perhaps-allow Israel to focus it's attention on Iran without needing to worry that someone take advantage of the chaos to launch attacks from Egypt.

  • SIV||

    U.S. Moves to Restore Military Aid to Egypt, Rand Paul Does Not Approve

    You're leaving someone out:

    Yesterday, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) and Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) issued a joint statement urging Secretary Clinton to delay the military aid:

  • MNG||

    Jesus, and people think liberals are whiny about symbolic matters.

    The post clearly mentions Bachmann's role. Maybe the reason Paul was highlighted over her in the headline was, I dunno, because this is a libertarian website and he's a major libertarian figure while she is not.

  • Restoras||

    Not for nothing but not only should we not be restoring military aid but we should be actively rendering ineffective the military hardware we've already sent.

  • ||

    Restoras... complete agreement here...Huge tactical mistake to restore military aid to Egypt...It ain't gonna play very well in Peoria either.
    American tax-dollars going to fund The Muslim Brotherhood? I don't think so.

  • ||

    The Obama administration could soon resume sending military aid to Egypt as early as next week. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is expected to issue a waiver that would restore most, but not all of the $1.3 billion slated for the Egyptian government.

    Why call it the Egyptian government?

    Why not just say it's for the Egyptian military?

    What a stupid thing to do! Just when we think we might be able to extricate ourselves by an inch from this flustercluck, the Obama Administration grabs more lube and wants us jump right back into the middle of the knot.

    Just when we're starting to reposition ourselves from being on the side of the vicious dictators to being on the side of the ummah, Obama wants to do an about face.

    How woefully incompetent the Obama Administration is!

  • GILMORE||

    Why call it the Egyptian government?

    Why not just say it's for the Egyptian military?

    That would be so... impolite.

    Because at the moment, they are sort of one and the same, aren't they? There *is no* real new regime that we should be expected to treat as the 'legitimate rulers' of Egypt = there's just the people who we've been subsidizing since Camp David so they don't get all Jihad-ish and start shit with the Israelis again. Why stop now? Especially now!? when there's no civilian leadership to constrain the military?

    It's been fucking blackmail since day one = why should things be different now?

  • wareagle||

    How woefully incompetent the Obama Administration is!
    -----------------------
    let me offer a counterpoint: what is happening in Egypt is exactly what this administration anticipated happening. Elections were held, the Muslim Brotherhood won a majority, just as the administration had to know would happen. But the military knows the MB better than Obie and Hill, and is not ready to see that group in power.

    This is not incompetence, it is malevolence. Now, it would be incompetent had the White House known that Mubarak would be replaced by genuine liberty-embracing democracy, but such a leap is not just incompetent, it is weapons grade stupid. The Palestinians had open elections and they chose Hamas. The Egyptian outcome was not an unknown.

  • MNG||

    Why should anyone assume the Egyptians were going to pick a government worse than Mubarak?

    Is this just more Freeper anti-Arab bigotry?

  • MNG||

    Arabs have elections in places like Lebanon without choosing Jihadist governments. Check your anti-Arabic prejudice.

  • wareagle||

    it's not prejudice, it's common sense. No group was better organized after Mubarak than the MB. Pretending otherwise is PC to the foolish degree. And I don't see anyone holding up Lebanon as a shining example of places to be. Just how many terrorist groups use it as a base camp?

  • ||

    That's certainly true, but it was certainly the consensus of experts, including experts in favor of the Arab Spring, the the MB would win. The only argument was over the size of the majority.

    I think that it's quite common for these groups to win a majority initially. So long as democracy remains, they're forced to either moderate or lose power. Things don't always remain democratic.

    I thought Mubarak should go, but I fully expected the initial result to be a MB government. How could you think otherwise?

  • Restoras||

    I suppose it is possible that a Muslim Brotherhood government would not be worse than Mubarak. That siad, given what the Muslim Brotherhood believes in, do you really want to take that bet?

  • Restoras||

    What's with all the anti-Arab stuff? Why is suggesting that Egyptians might elect a government worse than Mubarak anti-Arab?

  • MNG||

    I was responding to wareagle's suggestion to the effect of "well, you should know those Egyptians were going to elect Jihadists because those Palestinians did when they had the chance!"

    WTF?

  • GILMORE||

    The Muslim Brotherhood aren't 'jihadists', per se, although elements of them did merge with more extreme groups. Whatever. MNG, shut the fuck up about 'anti-arab'-ism or whatever. You don't have the first clue about Egyptian history or politics... you're just playing fucking liberal concern-troll.

  • MNG||

    So you see some merit in the argument that we should have known Egypt would be taken over by Jihadists because the GAzans voted in Jihadists?

    WTF? Explain that argument in non-racialist terms.

  • ||

    Huh? I don't see anyone being racialist other than you, MNG.

    The MB, like Hamas was best positioned and best organized. It's certainly true that many dictators (esp. those who get US support) like to marginalize any respectable opposition groups in order to leave only the really nasty ones. Groups like the MB and Hamas and so on are great to point to as an example of what will happen if the US stops supporting the lesser of two evils, or so the gambit goes.

    Just because it's a gambit doesn't mean that it's not true, though-- with these elections the best organized group does often do well, and there was every reason to expect it to be the MB, and every reason to make an analogy to Hamas without bringing race into it.

    Why must you engage in racialist thinking, MNG?

  • MNG||

    "The Palestinians had open elections and they chose Hamas. The Egyptian outcome was not an unknown."

    Explain these comments in non-racialist terms John.

    Why would what the Palestinians do be predictive of what the Egyptians did? Their conditions and history are quite different.

  • wareagle||

    MNG,
    if you are going to demand that a head of state leave - as Obama did with Mubarak - you should have some idea of what is likely to follow. All signs pointed toward the MB - numbers, organization, etc. It's not anti-Arab; it's pro common sense. We were sold this "Arab spring" nonsense as though Cairo was Prague. It's not.

  • MNG||

    Mubarak was on his way out before Obama made any demands; in fact if anything Obama was criticized for timidly stamping a done deal after the fact.

  • wareagle||

    then Obama should have let it play out to whatever conclusion, like he's doing in Syria. And Iran. And most other places not named Egypt and Libya, where we have traded known bad guys for unknown, and potentially worse, guys.

    That's the problem of getting involved in other folks' affairs. Doing it once sets a precedent for the next time.

  • MNG||

    He did let it play out, didn't he? What did he do?

  • wareagle||

    repeatedly carried on about how "Mubarak must go". You're right in that he did not sign onto a NATO-type mission, but it is interesting how he is passive with some nations but Mr Force with others.

    And this goes back to the central point: his administration knew full well what would happen with Mubarak deposed. The MB was the only group in a position to fill the vacuum. Come on..the military was already in a position of power with Mubarak. Why is it so reluctant to let the elected majority take over?

  • ||

    See, MNG, I agree with you that Obama mostly let it play out. He did signal a loss of US support at some point-- but I agree with that. I don't have a major objection to what President Obama did.

    However, I can support it while still thinking that it was obvious that the MB would take over because they were the only organized opposition group, and that a Hamas analogy is appropriate.

  • ||

    Sorry, MNG, I don't see where he said that. He said that the Muslim Brotherhood would win.

    The only person using the word "jihadists" is you, MNG. Everyone else is being much more nuanced.

  • MNG||

    "so they don't get all Jihad-ish"

    did I say that line?

  • GILMORE||

    MNG|3.16.12 @ 3:18PM|#
    "so they don't get all Jihad-ish"

    did I say that line?

    Dumb cocksucker = that was a euphamism to say that the billions we've given them over the years were to to keep peace with israel. Cherrypicking comments out of context does nothing to cover-up your blinding ignorance of the region's political affairs.

  • MNG||

    "from being on the side of the vicious dictators to being on the side of the ummah"

    Did I say that?

  • ||

    "from being on the side of the vicious dictators to being on the side of the ummah"

    I said it. I think that's the only legitimately rational long term goal.

    Our relationship with Egypt shouldn't be considered in terms of our relationship with Israel. It should be understood withing the context of the Cold War. Before the U.S. became the largest foreign contributor to Egypt, that title was held by the USSR. We've been trying to unwind our relationships with the dictators we established under the logic of the Cold War ever since the Berlin Wall came down.

    Now's our chance!

  • ||

    It's so hard to unwind those sorts of relationships once they're established. Our support for the rebels against Gaddafi was a lot better than our growing support for Gaddafi. Not supporting the military regime in Egypt against the Egyptian people was a step in the right direction...

    Why throw the long term strategic goal of unwinding our support for dictators in the region? ...just to keep the Egyptian military happy?!

  • ||

    Incidentally, I think it's wrong to assume or imagine that the Muslim Brotherhood and the Egyptian Military are on opposite sides, here.

    They're not.

    They seem to have made a deal with each other similar to the deal that existed between Mubarak and the Egyptian military. The Egyptian military has agreed to let the Muslim Brotherhood more or less do as they please, so long as they don't interfere with the military--and vica versa.

    The liberal reformers in Egypt feel utterly betrayed by the Muslim Brotherhood right now. They feel like they've been sold down the river by the Muslim Brotherhood for the sake of the military, and I think that's what's happening.

  • ||

    Ken Shultz...I agree, NOW is our chance... but I don't believe "The-Caliph-Taking-up-Valuable-Space-in-the-Oval Office" sees it the same way.
    Obama is precisely like the pre-WW2, British Prime Minister (Damn! I cannot remember his name!), who played appeasement politics with Hitler...to say that Obama is a Muslim sympathizer would be grossly understating the issue.

  • GILMORE||

    MNG|3.16.12 @ 2:32PM|#
    Why should anyone assume the Egyptians were going to pick a government worse than Mubarak?

    That's nonsense = The MB aren't "worse" than Mubarak - they've been the most potent political force in Egypt since the 1970s. *everyone knew* they'd benefit the most from a collapse of the Mubarak regime.

    The difference is, the MB is less likely to be US-friendly. Whether that's *worse* for Egyptians is probably moot. For the US, its an issue.

    p.s. read a fucking book numbnuts

  • MNG||

    If you want to say "given Egypt's history and sociology we should have guessed the MB would take power" then OK, I was objecting to the "we should have known they would elect Jihadists because the Palestinians did" argument above. That's almost certainly based on some racialist shit.

  • wareagle||

    now you are cherry-picking. I never made such a statement; you are conjoining two distinct thoughts. The administration should have known about the MB in Egypt simply because of its presence. The Hamas example is a case of one possible outcome when popular elections are held in a place that has zero experience with them. It is hardly "racialist" to say that the Arab world does not have an in-depth relationship with representative democracy.

  • MNG||

    "The Palestinians had open elections and they chose Hamas. The Egyptian outcome was not an unknown."

    You didn't say this? Why would the fact that the Palestinians did X make it "not an unknown" that the Egyptians would do the same unless you are implying some "shared" features between the two "peoples"?

  • wareagle||

    I did say that and it is an apt comparison of the two countries, not a blanket statement of every Arab nation. The "shared" feature among these peoples is a long history of living under kings, tyrants, dictators, and military strongmen. Besides, there was ample evidence that the MB in Egypt, like Hamas in Gaza, was better positioned than any group to do well in elections.

  • MNG||

    I think examples such as Lebanon demonstrate that Arabs need not be assumed to vote for Jihadists and such.

    If you want to say that conditions in Egypt made it likely, then that sounds reasonable to me.

  • ||

    I think examples such as Lebanon demonstrate that Arabs need not be assumed to vote for Jihadists and such.

    But that's the exception that proves the rule-- Lebanon has a long experience with democracy. (And Hezbollah is not so great, and there are underlying reasons.)

    You're arguing against a strongman here. wareagle and others said, correctly, that "everyone knew that the MB would win." You immediately read into that racial assumptions.

    I've looked through at all these posts date stamps, and I think you've been entirely unfair in your assumption of bad faith.

    It's certainly true that there are people out there who hold those opinions, though that's not necessarily predictive of what they think US policy should be. But you're accusing people here of thoughtcrimes that just don't seem to me to correspond to what's written in their posts.

  • MNG||

    You need to look harder then, because in addition to simply saying ""everyone knew that the MB would win." it was also said "The Palestinians had open elections and they chose Hamas. The Egyptian outcome was not an unknown."

    Since you read the thread so carefully you obviously noted that I said early on that if someone had merely said "knowing the conditions in Egypt one could know the MB would take over" that would be fine, it's this idea that the Egyptians could be predicted because of what the Gazans had done that I think clearly implies the "well, you know those Arabs always go Jihad-ish on us when they get the vote."

    Like any overgeneralization, counterexamples like Lebanon cut against that.

  • Sidd Finch||

    The outcome was known in Egypt because 84% support the death penalty for apostates. They're an illiberal people.

  • wareagle||

    "jihadists" is your word, not mine. But the MB does not sound like the Boys Club either.

  • GILMORE||

    MNG|3.16.12 @ 3:09PM|#
    I think examples such as Lebanon demonstrate that Arabs need not be assumed...

    Dear fucking god, the hits dont stop?!

    You racialist idiot = Lebanese are "Arab" in the sense that they *speak* it, but for you to draw broad comparisons between ethnically diverse Lebanon, and the entire rest of the region is fucking *moronic*.

    your entire POV about this issue is based on the fact *YOU KNOW NOTHING AT ALL* about the region. You see nothing wrong with making 'self-evident' arguments from an echo-chamber of ignorance

    Wikipedia, dipshit

    Identifying all Lebanese as ethnically Arab is a widely employed example of panethnicity since in reality, the Lebanese “are descended from many different peoples who have occupied, invaded, or settled this corner of the world,” making Lebanon, “a mosaic of closely interrelated cultures”[1].

  • GILMORE||

    "we should have known they would elect Jihadists because the Palestinians did" argument above. That's almost certainly based on some racialist shit.

    To repeat, Oh Fucktard = The Brotherhood has been the most powerful political force in Egypt since the 70s. 'Jihadist' is for YOU a racialist term. They're not technically 'jihadists' in the current Takfiri-terrorist sense.

    Also, you completely ignorant-retard about the Middle East = Hamas was a fucking *offshoot* of the Brotherhood.

    The MB is a movement, not a political party, but members have created political parties in several countries, such as the Islamic Action Front in Jordan and Hamas in Gaza and the West Bank.... These parties are staffed by Brotherhood members but kept independent from the MB to some degree.[19]

    wikipedia, shithead

  • ||

    I think it should be considered that...

    Every have something to say you just know is right but it's going to be highly controversial?

    Even if we assume these Islamist parties are jiahdists? If we want the jihadists not to be jihadists? Seeing them in power isn't the worst thing that can happen.

    Sure it could end up like Iran. And the chances of some Islamist party in Gaza mellowing once they're in power is pretty far fetched. But in Egypt, Tunisia and Libya? Nothing moderates people like having to deliver on political promises and stand for election.

    It's easy to be jihadi when you're not in power. Once you're in power, who are you gonna jihad against? Yourself? Once they've achieved power, the reason for jihad CAN starts to dissipate.

    I'm not sure seeing Islamists achieve power is necessarily a bad thing in every country equally over the long run.

  • ||

    I strongly suggest anyone who is surprised about Egypt read Orwell's Homage to Catalonia.

  • ||

    I would strongly suggest that everyone read that book, actually.

  • ||

    Ken Shultz....they'll never be so stupid to say "Hey! Harry and Mary Homeowner....your federal tax dollars are going to be sent to the Egyptian military, run by the Muslim Brotherhood"
    Obama has committed Americans' hard-earned money to aid and abet his kindred spirits in the Muslim world....and he is doing it behind the back of an irrelevant Congress which apparently doesn't give a rat's ass that he continues to usurp more and more of their powers every day.
    Obama is THE worst security threat to the United States.

  • ||

    What idiot gives the Executive Branch an out like that? Bad fucking idea.

  • ||

    The Honorable Senator Rand Paul did not receive the Nobel Prize for Peace.

    Get back to work, little people.

  • Titorelli||

    "However, the certification process can be sidestepped if..."

  • Alice Bowie||

    As much as you all will disagree with me but, I would not cut a single penny from our education budget util we cut ALL AID (except humanitarian in the form of Medical, AIDS prevention, porn, weed) to Egypt, Israel (which gets $5billion per year), and all of the other jokers.

    Teachers use to be able to deduct from schedule A expenses associated with classroom supplies paid for by the teacher and not the school. To save a whopping $500million/year, they took that away.

  • A Serious Man||

    We send porn and weed as aid to third world countries?

  • wareagle||

    your comment rests on the flawed premise of a federal role in education. You can practically plot an inverse relationship between federal expenditures and student achievement. However, I'm okay with cutting everyone off the American tit.

    Teachers are using their money because of fiscal mismanagement at the local level. Just how many deputy assistance vice-superintendents does a system need? And how many assistant principals are necessary?

  • ||

    Just how many deputy assistance vice-superintendents does a system need? And how many assistant principals are necessary?

    More.

  • MNG||

    "You can practically plot an inverse relationship between federal expenditures and student achievement."

    I hear this a lot, but iirc the federal role in education, especially science education, was precipitated when the Ruskies sent up Sputnik ahead of us and the feds took a look at the state of science education in the US and found it basically border-line Cletus level.

  • wareagle||

    and so the feds jumped in and lowered everything else to Cletus level, which is a bit insulting to Cletus. Come on; the places that spend the most get the least. If all the feds had focused on was science, I might be with you as seeing that as a good thing. But it never stops with one subject.

  • MNG||

    Do you really want to argue that the state of science education is worse now than it was when the Ruskies beat us into space?

  • wareagle||

    just by how American kids perform vis a vis the rest of the world, seems a stretch to call it improved, certainly at the K-12 level. Every administration for as long as I can remember makes a point of saying how we need to do better in math and science. This repetition indicates the goal is not being achieved.

  • MNG||

    We do poorly now compared to some other well off nations, yes. But we were horrible in the early 50's.

  • wareagle||

    and throwing more money into the pot is not going improve our performance, which is the sum total of my argument on this point.

  • MNG||

    I think its like federal anti-poverty spending. If you only look at the 1970's on that spending has bumped no figures towards the good. It's stagnant.

    But if you go back to, say, 1959, poverty was double what it would be by 1975.
    It seems that the initial spending likely had some dramatic effects, but then you reach a point where you run into entrenched "subcultures of poverty"; throwing money at these is indeed a waste.

  • wareagle||

    but if you take your poverty example, the trend line was going down even before the Great Society. Maybe that initiative helped it continue for a time, but the aftermath has been a culture of entitlement and sorriness.

    Safe to say one of govt's flaws is not knowing when to get out. But I doubt there has ever been a govt initiative that had a sunset date, or a govt official who admitted that a program had done its job and we could move on to something else. They all just keep growing. Are you sure you are a liberal?

  • MNG||

    The trend lines were going that way, but of course there has been increasing federal help for a while too, so it's very hard to untangle. It seems reasonable to assume it helped some people some (especially the very dramatic reductions during the "great society" years, they really were amazing).

    "But I doubt there has ever been a govt initiative that had a sunset date, or a govt official who admitted that a program had done its job and we could move on to something else."

    You're absolutely right. Government programs run on other people's money, they should constantly be asking themselves if they are really necessary.

    "Are you sure you are a liberal?"

    Well, people here are convinced I am because I'm not as conservative on some things as they are. But I've voted for many a Republican, and voted for Pat Buchanan for President in 2000, so I guess I'm an odd liberal for sure...

  • wareagle||

    nothing wrong with odd. Hey, I gotta go; taking the wife on a weekend excursion. But I enjoyed the discussion. Always nice when folks can go back and forth without nastiness.

  • MNG||

    Same here, enjoyed it a lot.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    ...voted for Pat Buchanan for President in 2000

    Ok. Props for admitting it, but that's just crazy.

  • MNG||

    I often vote third party, and did so because I wanted to see the Reform Party become a permament third party. I voted for Perot for President too, for much the same reason.

  • ||

    It's really, really hard to answer these kinds of questions, because:

    1) Political support for addressing a issue will not obtain a majority until a majority of people see it as a problem worth addressing.

    2) A majority of people seeing it as a problem with addressing is assuredly concomitant with the problem being addressed to some extent through non-governmental means (and non-federal means).

    3) There certainly is a pro-government argument that government is needed to achieve a 100% goal, because the free market will always leave room for minority outcomes. To fully impose the wishes of the majority on everyone requires government.

    In approximately every issue ever, you will see the same result with the trend lines. That doesn't rule out that the theory private sector addressed the low hanging fruit, it just makes it difficult to answer.

  • The Education Bureaucracy||

    We've got mortgages to keep up! Do you want America to collapse just to prove a point, you heartless bastard!?!?

  • Restoras||

    Government spending on education has yielded zilch in terms of results. Why is the answer to this problem always to spend more?

  • MNG||

    That's goofy. We're light years from where we were when the government, frightened that we were beat by a semi-agricultural backwater like Russia, took a good look at where we were.

  • Restoras||

    Well they had a lot of help from captured German scientists and technology. I'm not sure they would have beat us to space without that help - but it is possible.

  • MNG||

    Not only the government, but private foundations looked at our science education right after Sputnik; people were terrified and wondered how we got beat. They found our science education was terrible, straight up creationism was being taught a lot of places. So they started with federal standards and programs. And we are mch better off science wise than we were.

    This is not to say all federal funding of education is a good thing, or that it couldn't be done better at this time. I just certainly don't beleive this "there is a strong inverse correlation between federal spending and results in education." I'm betting that is only true if you look from the 1970's on.

  • Restoras||

    Well the Department of Education as it now exists was founded in 1979. By this time hadn't most of the deficiencies in science been corrected?

  • MNG||

    Like I said, I'm not defending all federal involvement. Before the creation of the department of Education there was still a lot of federal involvement, just no elevation to cabinet level. I'm sure that elevation likely did little good or actual harm, these symbolic things usually do.

    But that ain't the same as declaring an inverse relationship between federal spending and accomplishments. Those claims ironically almost always use data starting in the late 1970's (probably from the Department!) and ignore the light years movement from the 1950s.

    The feds didn't intervene post-Sputnik for some touchy-feely reason, they were shocked and scared.

  • Restoras||

    Fair enough, but then wouldn't it be a good idea to see how much was spent and what it was spent on from, say, 1950 to 1979? If there was improvement, as it seems there was, then shouldn't that serve as a benchmark? Given the lack of improvement since 1979 is it fair to assume that the spending is now mostly politically driven instead of results driven?

  • MNG||

    Like I said above, I think it's like a lot of things you can spend money on: at first it really helps out, but then you hit intractable things, in this case hard case subcultures of poverty. I think most of our education and poverty issues today involve a hard core under-class with self-destructive habits that simply can't be changed by money.

    At some point in our history all the people who had better habits but were needy were helped by our programs, now for the most part it's this underclass with problems money can't dent.

  • wareagle||

    at what point is it fair to say that govt policy actively contributes to the perpetuation of an underclass? The policies no longer work to alleviate a problem, they subsidize its continuation and an entire political class is dedicated to seeing that this does not change.

  • MNG||

    I'm sure it contributes to it, especially now.

    Let's say you've got a community that lives in poverty, maybe because of past racism and (usually government sponsored) oppression. Now, maybe 80% of those people would like to improve their lot but lack some basic means, but 20% might be full of behavioral pathologies.

    If you gave them all money and aid here is what would happen: most of the 80% would move out of poverty and go about their business, but the 20% would just "harden" into a horrible subculture of poverty (after all, the only inducement they had to change was the hardship their behavior might bring on them, and it's been redressed).

    That seems to be what happened. 55% of black families lived in poverty in 1959; by 1975 that dropped to like 23%, but it's been stuck at that 23% since..

  • ||

    The 80-20 effect would, I think, happen equally as much without government intervention. The usual argument for government intervention, as I understand it, is that through government the majority can force the recalcitrant 20% to go along.

  • MNG||

    Except the 80 would likely have much more trouble overcoming the effects of the past oppression and or misfortune.

  • ||

    why not cut both?

  • MNG||

    Wait a minute here. I'm not fan of foriegn aid in general, and Egyptian foriegn aid is just aid to Israel in yet another form, but why should we cut the aid to Egypt exclusively now? Is their government now worse than the one we used to send money to? They still seem to be keeping the peace with Israel.

  • Restoras||

    They may be keeping the peace for now - but with the potential/likelihood that the Muslim Brotherhood gains significant power, how long will that last? Plus, with all those nice flashy Abrams tanks we gave/sold them, the Egyptians might want to test them against whatever Isreal is fielding.

  • MNG||

    I bet you money they Israelis do not want us to cut that aid.

    That aid buys assurance from the military that there will be no action against Isreal.

    If the Brotherhood takes over and acts up then cut the aid then.

  • Restoras||

    But if we wait to cut the aid after they've stockpiled a ton of weaponry what good is cutting after they start a war? Sound like stopping shipments of scrap iron to Japan after they attacked Pearl Harbor.

  • MNG||

    We've been paying them that money yearly for decades dude, it's not like they are going to get some sudden stockpile.

    The threat of losing the weapons is what ensures that whoever wins elections the military doesn't do something against our interests.

  • Restoras||

    Ok. Dude.

  • wareagle||

    mostly because the army has not stepped aside to let the Muslim Brotherhood parliamentary majority take over. Right now, the army is more concerned about 1) keeping peace in its own yard and 2) engaging in just a bit of self-protection.

    The talk of aid is a distraction so that you will either forget or fail to notice the outcome of Egypt's elections, an outcome the administration HAD TO KNOW WOULD HAPPEN.

  • Restoras||

    Well Niall Ferguson said so a little more than a year ago but why would anyone listen to him?

  • ||

    Is their government now worse than the one we used to send money to?

    Doesn't seem noticably better, and they had the atrocious manners to lock up a bunch of American "democracy activists".

  • ||

    Have you not been following the recent NGO dispute?

    It's a matter of exactly how to use that leverage.

  • ||

    Egyptian foriegn aid is just aid to Israel in yet another form

    Spoofer. Even minge isn't this stupid and not enough Jew hatred.

    C-

  • MNG||

    I have zero "jew hatred", this is what the Likudian's say instead of, you know, actual arguments.

    Do you dispute that we support Egypt because they keep the peace with our ally Israel? What, do you think we do it out of oour deep and abiding love of Egypt?

  • Alice Bowie||

    The same with Jordon and Saudi Arabia.

  • MNG||

    Indeed.

  • ||

    Do you dispute that we support Egypt because they keep the peace with our ally Israel?

    You use the word "peace". It doesn't mean what you think it means.

    Tunnels from Egypt to the PA don't pass any weapons or explosives or foot soldiers, simply food and medicine?

    Like I said, even minge isn't this stupid.

  • ||

    Because, as everyone knows, the Camp David accords which stated all of the money happened under that greatly Pro-Israel Jimmy Carter? Hell, instead of a Democrat he is practically a member Of Lukid?

    You are at weapons grade stupid today.

  • Tim||

    Those Copts ain't gonna slaughter themselves you know...

  • MNG||

    Now this makes some sense; we should do what we can to improve the situation for the Copts, we could condition some of the aid on this.

  • ||

    Wait, did you even read the article?

    All Paul and Bachmann are doing is conditioning the aid on similar issues. The State Department and Obama is considering waiving the necessary conditions.

    What Paul and Bachmann are proposing isn't really that different from what you're proposing. It's a different of exact tactics, at most.

  • ||

    I think, all in all, considering the likely uses that money will be put to, it would be better to just douse it with gasoline and light it on fire.

  • MNG||

    The number one thing that money is going to be used for is to induce the Egyptian military to make sure that whoever wins what election the peace with Israel is kept and no attacks on the US originate from there. Believe that.

  • wareagle||

    the election has already been had and the wholly predictable outcome was a win for the MB. I submit that is the very reason the military is holding onto the reins. Perhaps those folks know more about the MB than Obie and Hill, or anyone else in the US govt for that matter.

  • MNG||

    That a potentially hostile party has done well in the elections is actually all the more reason to keep the military on our side, the way we've done that is military aid.

  • Sidd Finch||

    On educational spending, Tino Sanadaji found that after controlling for cost of living there is a very modest correlation between educational spending and NAEP scores.

    http://super-economy.blogspot......s-and.html

  • Sidd Finch||

    educational? WTF

  • ||

    Still smaller than Daniel Patrick Moynihan's preferred correlation of "distance to the Canadian border." I believe he proposed simply moving states or people closer.

  • ||

    I guess there is no disaster big enough to convince our ruling class that they don't have the power to shape the world as they wish, even if they were competent.

  • mad libertarian guy||

    I love when other people feel it's that MY MONEY is better used by sending it to a foreign land to support a military that has fuck all to do with protecting America than by allowing me to keep it and spend it in ways that directly benefit me and mine?

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