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Americans in Washington, D.C., and around the country are unemployed, under-employed, under-insured, in debt, even hungry or homeless.

Let's redirect the inaugural ball funding to those who need it.

Since President Obama was re-elected he has gone back on a promise to end tax cuts for the wealthy, made a "fiscal cliff" deal that raised taxes on ordinary people more steeply than on billionaires, set the stage for big cuts to Social Security and/or Medicare by spring, authorized five more years of warantless spying, claimed the power to imprison anyone forever without a trial, and killed dozens of men, women, and children with drones.

Is this the time to spend hundreds of millions of dollars CELEBRATING?

While veterans huddle over steam vents to keep warm on the streets of Washington, Obama will attend the Commander in Chief Ball, a tradition begun by George W. Bush.  He'll also attend a ball being held in the five rooms that held five different balls last time around.  This allows the president to reduce the number of balls he's attending and integrates the dishonest math that dominates budgetary discussions into the inaugural festivities.

Big shots will pay $250,000 for tickets, while corporate persons will pay $1 million each.  Numerous institutions will hold dozens of balls, cruises, and parties, wasting enough cash to have saved a great many lives.

The Washington Post reported this week that Afghanistan may have $3 billion under its soil in the form of oil and minerals, and that such wealth could transform that nation.  Of course, the United States has wasted more than that waging war for the past 11 years.  Military spending by the U.S. government is over $1 trillion per year.  We could transform our own society as well if we shifted our priorities.

Click here to urge all ball funders to instead fund those who have lost their jobs, their healthcare, and their homes.

Please forward this email widely to like-minded friends.

-- The RootsAction.org team

P.S. Our small staff is supported by contributions from people like you; your donations are greatly appreciated.

P.P.S. RootsAction is an independent online force endorsed by Jim Hightower, Barbara Ehrenreich, Cornel West, Daniel Ellsberg, Glenn Greenwald, Naomi Klein, Bill Fletcher Jr., Laura Flanders, former U.S. Senator James Abourezk, Coleen Rowley, Frances Fox Piven, and many others.

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