Saturday, March 20, 2010

"Economic Stimulus"? I Think Not

One of the things that have long bothered me is all of the crap that is included in these bills, and I have no doubt that this “Health Care Reform Bill” is bursting with stuff that has absolutely nothing to do with Health Care.

Case in point: My local paper’s lead story this morning was that the city had received $7.9 Million of “Stimulus” money. How is this money being spent?

Louisville says it will make more fresh fruits and vegetables available in poor neighborhoods, improve bike trails and serve healthier school lunches as a result of a $7.9million federal stimulus grant received Friday.

The grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is designed to give people more “opportunities to be healthy and to make better choices,” said Dr. Adewale Troutman, director of the Louisville Metro Health and Wellness Department.

The money is part of the federal agency’s “Communities Putting Prevention to Work” initiative and will go toward 23 projects to promote healthy living.

The $7.9million is equal to about one-third of the annual operating budget for the health department, which will administer the grant, and is a “dramatic extension” of resources available for improving health, Troutman said.

A complete list of what will be funded by the “Stimulus money” includes:

• Expand local food distribution points.
• Support neighborhood-based projects for local producers and sellers in “food deserts.”
• Increase student input in food and beverage choices.
• Implement “menu labeling” for places that sell prepared foods.
• Conduct a “food fight” social marketing campaign, which will provide nutritional information about food choices.
• Increase support and standardize breastfeeding policies hospitals where babies are born.
• Implement metro government workplace breastfeeding policies.
• Revise wellness policies in schools.
• Standardize physical activity in JCPS school-based afterschool programs.
• Increase access to metro parks and the proposed Louisville Loop.
• Implement health impact assessments used to evaluate the potential health effects of a project or policy.
• Increase public safety measures in metro parks.
• Improve community policing in targeted communities.
• Institute an advisory council on food policy.
• Develop a master’s degree program in public health and urban planning at the University of Louisville.
• Develop a communitywide media campaign to promote physical activity and improve nutrition.

Does anyone see anything here that even remotely resembles “Economic Stimulus”?

I know that no one gives a crap about local issues, nor should you. The fact is, however, that this is being done in every community in the country.

As a member of the unemployed, forgive me if I don’t give a rat’s ass about spending Federal tax dollars (that we don’t have) on frivolous BS like “Increase support and standardize breastfeeding policies hospitals where babies are born” and “Implement metro government workplace breastfeeding policies.”

Yes, I made my comments in the “comments” section, but it’s like a voice in the wilderness. Too many people don’t seem to understand that this is THEIR MONEY.

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