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Mar 11, 2008

Isn't it payback time now?

It's being reported now that Iraq is facing a budget surplus. Seriously! Isn't time now for them to start paying? Here's the quote:

"The Iraqis have a budget surplus," said U.S. Comptroller General David Walker. "We have a huge budget deficit. . . . One of the questions is who should be paying."
I want to know too!

"They ought to be able to use some of their oil to pay for their own costs and not keep sending the bill to the United States," said Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt.
I hate to agree (spit) with a Democrat (spit, spit), but in this case, I absolutely agree! While I support the efforts of the U.S. in Iraq, I understand why we are there, I support the troops, and I want to see them all come home safely and victoriously. But..again..if they are facing a budget surplus while we are facing billions in deficit...shouldn't the Iraqi government start paying their fair share now?

In recent months, Iraq experienced its highest oil production and export levels since the war began five years ago, said Stuart Bowen, special inspector general for Iraq reconstruction.

That spike in revenue combined with the highest oil prices in history, "coalesce into an enormous revenue windfall for the Iraqi government," Bowen told the Senate Appropriations Committee.

Whereas Iraqi officials estimated $35 billion in oil revenues last fall, Bowen said the final number is likely to be closer to $60 billion.

HOLY SHIT!! $60 Billion in revenues?!?! Okay, I get the fact there are "operating costs" to running a country. So..how much is the surplus?

Walker and the other auditors did not give a figure as to the likely surplus. U.S. officials contend that Iraq's lack of spending is due primarily to Baghdad's inability to determine where its money is needed most and how to allocate it efficiently.

Just wonderful! They don't know how much the surplus is because...well..frankly...the Iraqi's just aren't spending it. Why not?

The U.S. has spent more than $45 billion on rebuilding Iraq. And while officials in Iraq contend that much progress is being made, many projects remain unfinished and U.S. troops are still needed to provide security.
Which means...we are still paying for rebuilding thier infrastructure and for their security...and...

The Government Accountability Office estimates that the U.S. has designated $6 billion to rebuild Iraq's energy sector and $300 million to develop Iraq's government ministries. But GAO contends that the U.S. doesn't have a strategic plan on how to accomplish either goal.

Hmmm...we're still designating money and still rebuilding...but the Iraqi's don't know how to spend their money? Oh, sure..this makes a whole lot of sense!!! Wait..what else did they say?

The State Department told investigators it believes the Iraqis should be responsible for devising such a plan. GAO disagreed.

I agree with the State Department! WTF does the GAO mean? The GAO says the U.S. doesn't have a strategic plan for how to accomplish the goals while spending taxpayer dollars...but they don't think the Iraqi's should be responsible for devising a plan and spending their own money!!! Okay..but that still doesn't really answer the question as to why the Iraqi government isn't paying their own way now....

But according to other U.S. officials, a major problem is that Iraq does not have the capacity to allocate the money without it being wasted or pocketed by corrupt officials.
Oh..okay...still..I say..WTF!!!!! If they know there are corrupt officials..get them the frack outta there! Holy begeezus already! Oh..yeah..one other thing....

Last week, Sens. Carl Levin, D-Mich., and John Warner, R-Va., asked GAO to investigate what Iraq is doing with its oil revenue. The senators estimated that Iraq will realize "at least $100 billion in oil revenues in 2007 and 2008."
100 billion freakin dollars!!!! Don't that just beat all! Yes..let's support the troops...but for crying out loud..I think we've spent enough American treasure and spilt enough American BLOOD that it's now time..and they can obviously afford it...for Iraq to start paying some of that back!

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