Wednesday, September 03, 2014
   
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Foreign aid vs. entitlements

I have been trying to decipher the 7-6-11 letter to the editor.

What I have come up with is that the writer believes that Barack Obama is a weak leader because he cut back on funding for the Egyptian people, even though the Egyptian government resisted our aid and placed many obstacles making it difficult to complete activities for both USAID/Egypt’s bilateral programs and civil society direct grants programs. Most of the debate around the democracy and governance programs focuses on the question of whether they work.

Between 2005 and 2009 when democracy funding was at its peak, the Freedom House ratings showed Egypt in the “not free” category. The writer said that Obama helped bring about the likelihood that radicals will come to power there. Maybe the writer believes we should have helped to keep a corrupt dictator (Mubarak) in power. He said “at least there was peace”; if you can call corruption and allowing abuse of his own people peace.

The writer obviously feels that Obama should not have reduced funding to the Egyptian people but believes that entitlements (Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, educational benefits, farm programs, etc.), which help our own people, are socialism.

Penny Fattig, Gothenburg

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