VP Nutter Takes on Obama at U.S. Mayors Conference
The U.S. Conference of Mayors is in the midst of their 79th Annual Meeting in Baltimore. And to get things started off right, they proposed a resolution calling on Congress to end the war in Afghanistan. It’s the first time they’ve done this since Vietnam, which is noteworthy. Because like then, mayors still have no say over foreign policy.
The Conference, of which Mayor Michael Nutter became Vice-President today, is urging the government to re-focus on domestic policy. According to the AP, the resolution states, “$126 billion is being spent each year on the wars that should be spent at home to create jobs, rebuild infrastructure, develop sustainable energy and provide for other needs.”
Leadership of the fantasy camp had some choice words for the federal government, too. And in light of yesterday’s Council vote on raising taxes, we imagine Nutter’s hoping you hear this excuse he’s promoting on a national level. He actually referred to the Obama Administration’s cuts as the “Great Retreat by the federal government.” He and many other speakers have suggested such cuts, as well as continuing to route money to the Mideast wars, have increased the burden on local governments.
What they’re saying is true. There’s no doubt about that. But to suddenly bring it up is incredibly childish.
When America was thrown into two wars in the Middle East back in 2001/2002, it was explicitly stated by then-President Bush (perhaps the one true thing he ever said) that these wars would be continuous and there’d be no formal surrender declarations. Nothing any protestor, peace activist or Dennis Kucinich did could do away with that fact. And over the course of two presidential elections and five congressional elections, there’s been no major push to elect enough representatives that’d actually do away with the War on Terror – other than in 2006, which everyone had to know was a sham from the get-go, since Democrats would do and say anything to get back into power. And even then, no one proposed leaving Afghanistan. Just a “phased withdrawal” from Iraq, simple suggestions of which were vetoed by President Bush and replaced with a “surge” of American troops.
But that’s not the fault of America’s mayors. Like we said earlier, they have no say over foreign policy. What is their fault, though, is not planning for the inevitable decline in federal and state money the prolonged war would bring – not to mention trusting the Bush Administration’s artificial economic bubbles propped up after 9/11. Many of these mayors even had two years of stimulus payouts to plan for the road ahead – which included the easy-to-predict fact that Stimulus-happy Democrats would lose seats in Congress during the last election period. We get the point of the weekend is a self-promotional thing, but America’s mayors failed to plan ahead.
What we need is a conference of mayors that begins their weekend Fun Time with “We fucked up, too, but…”