It was only a matter of time before pundits would seize yet another juicy opportunity to lash out at the current American administration. Their latest stunt? Calling America stingy, at the very same time our government was opening its wallet for an initial pledge even before the extent of the Tsunami damages was fully understood by the world community.
Faced with the reality of donations pouring into various international aid organizations from American private corporations and citizens, these accusations are now being slightly revised and directed at the American Government being stingy, while it's now being reluctantly admitted that American People are indeed being generous.
The sensationalistic-headline-hungry author of this op'ed New York Times article appears to have completely lost track of the fact that unlike certain countries with a heavy extreme liberal heritage (socialism), our tax system doesn't gouge out its citizens and corporations. Donating to charities and non-profit organizations is an American way of life, especially in the Midwest and the "Bible Belt". Private citizens and corporations can in turn write those donations off on their taxes, which is money that would otherwise go to the Government.
This is where the gloves come off.
Why are pundits suddenly so eager to depend on the government to deal with global disaster relief? If you don't believe the American government is donating enough money, then pull out your own wallet. And get everyone you know to follow suit. It's that fscking simple. What ... is it so hard to remember those tax cuts that may have saved us a few hundred bucks here and there, pull out the ol' credit card, head-over to redcross.org and make a fscking donation? Or do we need Uncle Sam to be holding our collective hands?
NAH. let's just sit around and moan. Let's blame the government. Let's write stupid editorials that sell page views. Let's milk that political angle for all it's fscking worth.
The cold, hard, undeniable fact is, America is delivering.
When 9/11 had hit, Amazon.com had raised $6.8 Million through roughly 170,000 donations during the entirety of the fund-raising campaign. That was for a scarring event that happened in OUR OWN BACKYARD.
Just days after the Amazon Tsunami Relief campaign started, as of this writing, Amazon.com is about to blow past the $9 Million mark, with no signs of slowing-down. Yesterday morning, around 9am, it was at around $4.5 Million.
Even before the whole Amazon fundraising campaign gathered steam, the American Red Cross had reported it had already received $18 Million from American citizens, just 3 days after the disaster hit.
None of these figures are including corporate donations, which are also eager to hop on the bandwagon. You can hardly beat that kind of PR.
As far as the Red Cross should be concerned, money from the private sector is just as green as money from governments.