Brain Dead

In addition to the myriad of other hypocrisies of the Bush administration that the Schaivo case has pointedly highlighted, this might be the ultimate cherry on top of the gigantic sundae of unmitigated temerity (hat tip WTF Is It Now?):
According to doctors at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C., 60 percent of the wounded soldiers coming back from Iraq have traumatic brain injuries.

Unfortunately, the Bush administration has recently completely zeroed out funding for the Federal TBI Act, which provides exactly this kind of help.
That’s right. Bush’s proposed 2006 budget includes cutting a $9 million program for treating people with traumatic brain injury, which completely eliminates the Health Resources and Services Administration’s Federal Traumatic Brain Injury Program. The Traumatic Brain Injury Act of 1996 was passed
To amend the Public Health Service Act to provide for the conduct of expanded studies and the establishment of innovative programs with respect to traumatic brain injury, and for other purposes.
This endeavor, however, was considered expendable by the President who now undermines the checks and balances of our system of government, issuing an edict from the executive branch to direct the legislative branch to undermine the judicial branch. Willing to subvert one of the fundamental tenets of our democracy, he was not willing to earmark $9 million for the continuation of a program that studies traumatic brain injury—despite its importance in developing possible treatments for fully 60% of our returning wounded soldiers. Support the troops indeed.

And note—the program did not require a specific amount of funding to keep it alive. Indicating a $1 million budget, or even a $100,000 budget, for the program would have sealed its reauthorization, but refusing to fund it at all was its death sentence.

I guess there are some plugs worth pulling when nobody’s paying attention.

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