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Thursday, March 16, 2017

Indian Country


INDIAN COUNTRY



Trump's "America First: A Budget Blueprint to Make America Great Again" is a collector's item, a first-edition of a tribe's economic ideology.  Citizens shall quote selected passages of the document as they applaud or turn down their thumbs.  Their representatives in Congress shall do likewise.  All should subject the language of the document to "strict construction," because Trump-polished language disguises ambiguity. [Access the full text at http://www.npr.org/2017/03/16/520379601/read-president-trumps-budget-blueprint ]



Trump boldly announces in his message to Congress that



The American people elected me to fight for their priorities in Washington, D.C. and deliver on my promise to protect our Nation.  I fully intend to keep that promise.

….

We are going to do more with less, and make the Government lean and accountable to the people.

….

This includes deep cuts to foreign aid.  It is time to prioritize the security and well-being of Americans, and to ask the rest of the world to step up and pay its fair share. (pages 1-2)



If you flip to page 27, you discover a proclamation in a box:



The Department of the Interior (DOI) is responsible for protecting and managing vast areas of U.S. lands and waters, providing scientific and other information about its national resources, and meeting the Nation's trust responsibility and other commitments to American Indians, Alaska Natives, and U.S.-affiliated island communities.



N.B.  American Indians.



On the same page, you discover that the 2018 budget sustains funding for DOI's



collection and disbursement of roughly $10 billion annually from mineral development, an important source of revenue to the Federal Treasury, States, and Indian mineral owners.



Moreover, DOI



supports tribal sovereignty and self-determination across Indian Country by focusing on core funding and services to support ongoing tribal government operations.  The Budget reduces funding for more recent demonstration projects and initiatives that only serve a few Tribes. (page 28)



N.B.  Indian mineral owners, tribal sovereignty and self-determination, recent demonstration projects, a few Tribes



You should ask where "Indian Country" is located, especially when you discover the 2017 CR/Enacted appropriation for DOI was $13.2 billion but the 2018 Request is $11.6 billion, an 11.7% reduction.  Pray for the Indian Country that is your Nation.



Jerry W. Ward, Jr.                            March 16, 2017

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