by Chris Haire
You know, I had a post all set to go about the Serve America Act and Jim DeMint. As you know, the act increases the size of AmeriCorps from 75,000 to 250,000, and well, DeMint doesn't like it. He thinks the government shouldn't be involved in the volunteerism business; he thinks the feds needs to stay away from giving any money whatsoever to charity groups.
Except for when it involves Uncle Sam giving money to faith-based organizations doing charity work. Heck, he even co-sponsored the IDEA Parental Choice Act of 2003 which would allow the federal government to give money to faith-based organizations that help children with disabilities. It didn't pass.
But nevermind that. Jim DeMint thinks the government should never ever be involved in the charity business. No way. No how. In fact, George, Ben, Tom, and John wouldn't like it much, or at least that's what Jimbo said on the Senate floor.
Government charity is anathema to what our Founders intended and what our Constitution stands for. Despite our good intentions, where we try to implement those good intentions and our compassion through the force of Government, we are effectively violating our oath of office here.
Yeah, I was going to write about this, but I decided not to. The act had passed the Senate. DeMint's role in this matter was done.
Apparently not. Yesterday, he spoke to Fox News about the Ted Kennedy Serve America Act. And he was still bitching and moaning. And he unveiled his latest gripe: the Serve Act would make AmeriCorps the 14th largest employer ... in the world.
How he came up with that figure, I just don't know. Because as near as I can tell, Jimmy is wrong. In fact, according to Forbes magazine, the 275,000 employee AmeriCorps wouldn't even be in the top 30 of the world's largest employers.
Now, maybe DeMinted means that the Serve Act will make the U.S. government the 14th largest employer in the world, but I somehow doubt that. The fed alone employs some 1.7 million, according to the Dept. of Labor, and that doesn't take into account the nearly 800,000 employed by the U.S. Postal Service.
Dammit, Jim. I'm a smart-ass, not a statistician. I hate numbers and I hate looking up stats. Next time you get the Vulcan nerve pinch.