What Collapsing Empire Looks Like

As we enter our ninth year of the War in Afghanistan with an
escalated force, and continue to occupy Iraq indefinitely, and feed an
endlessly growing Surveillance State, reports are emerging of the
Deficit Commission hard at work planning how to cut Social Security,
Medicare, and now even to freeze military pay. But a new New York Times article
today illustrates as vividly as anything else what a collapsing empire
looks like, as it profiles just a few of the budget cuts which cities
around the country are being forced to make. This is a sampling of what
one finds:

Plenty of businesses and governments furloughed workers this year, but Hawaii went further -- it furloughed its schoolchildren.
Public schools across the state closed on 17 Fridays during the past
school year to save money, giving students the shortest academic year in
the nation.

Many transit systems have cut service to make ends meet, but
Clayton County, Ga., a suburb of Atlanta, decided to cut all the way,
and shut down its entire public bus system. Its last buses ran on March 31, stranding 8,400 daily riders.

Even public safety has not been immune to the budget ax. In
Colorado Springs, the downturn will be remembered, quite literally, as a
dark age: the city switched off a third of its 24,512
streetlights to save money on electricity, while trimming its police
force and auctioning off its police helicopters.

Full article here...

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