cross-posted at skippy as well as a literal cornucopia of other community blogs.

we are discouraged but not surprised that another virulent and misdirecting meme is breaking thru in the mmm (multi-millionaire media) is that if the dems pass any sort of resolution affecting the funding of awol’s war in iraq, they are not “supporting the troops.”

jill, over at brilliant at breakfast says it well:

you know what really sends “the wrong message to our troops”?
for the last few years, republicans have given lip service to supporting the troops while cutting funding for their armor, their equipment, and their medical care. american citizens have been slapping ribbon magnets made in china on their suvs and saying it’s how they show their support. and when our troops are wounded, they come home and are put into a facility that is more like the weird hospital scenes in the film jacob’s ladder than like the kind of state-of-the-art recuperative facility these young men and women deserve.

— more after the jump —
if the senate is so worried about looking like they’re “not supporting the troops,” here’s what they need to do:

simply pass a resolution that says this…we will continue to provide funds necessary to keep our military personnel who are in iraq provided with adequate armor, equipment and security; however, we are cutting off all funding to all paramilitary contractors such as blackwater.

that’s a no-brainer. the american people have no interest in supporting highly-paid private war profiteers over our troops, which, as it turns out, is often times what we are doing. upi:

the committee on oversight and government reform of the u.s. house of representatives, under the new chairmanship of henry waxman, d-calif., held a series of hearings to examine “waste, fraud, and abuse of taxpayer dollars.”

“it’s remarkable that the world of contractors and subcontractors is so murky that we can’t even get to the bottom of this, let alone calculate how many millions of dollars taxpayers lose in each step of the subcontracting process. but the impacts of contracting waste go beyond just dollars and cents,” waxman said in his opening statement.

on wednesday [feb. 7], the committee heard testimony from family members of four private contractors who were murdered in fallujah in march 2004. photos of their charred bodies hanging from a bridge shocked the u.s. public.

what were these men, so-called ‘private contractors,’ doing in an area of the country that the u.s. military would not venture? and what role do private contractors play in supporting the coalition forces in iraq? how many private contractors are currently working in iraq? to what extent does the u.s. government or military oversee the work of private contractors?

wednesday’s hearing produced few answers even to these questions.

if the dems ever step up the plate and point out the true lack of support for our troops has always come from the publicans, and that the “funding” goes for unknown pork and boondoggles in the form of independent contractors’ pockets, there would be no cowering in the corner before false memes, if we can mix our metaphors so badly as to render them moot.

addendum:  the sfchron reports that spending in the iraq war is out of control:

more than $10 billion of the money paid to military contractors for iraq reconstruction and troop support was either excessive or unsupported by documents, including $2.7 billion for contracts held by halliburton or one of its subsidiaries, congress was told thursday.

the three top auditors overseeing work in iraq told a house committee their review of $57 billion in iraq contracts found that defense and state department officials condoned or allowed repeated work delays, bloated expenses and payments for shoddy work or work never done.

william reed, director of the pentagon’s defense contract audit agency, told the house oversight and government reform committee that his agency discovered the problems — $4.9 billion in “questioned” or overly expensive charges, and $5.1 billion in “unsupported” or undocumented expenses — after auditing $57 billion in pentagon contracts.

reed acknowledged that war-torn iraq lacked ideal circumstances for solid accounting practices.

and the dems are afraid if they restrict spending they’ll be accused of not supporting the troops?  are these people blind, or stupid, or corrupt, or all three?

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