THE PENTAGON — President Obama announced today that he would be awarding the Medal of Honor to the U.S. Army for its "great sacrifice and courage in the face of a fiscal disaster," according to an official statement.
This week, the U.S. Army joined many past recipients of the nation's highest award for bravery by jumping on a fiscal grenade, and having its budget blown apart.
A decade of protracted war, tax cuts, and reckless entitlement spending placed the U.S. government on the precipice of a dreaded “fiscal cliff." With lawmakers facing the challenge of cutting $1.2 trillion from the budget over the next ten years, it could have forced Americans to swallow a series of automatic tax increases and cuts to entitlement spending.
This would have forced the average American to make immense sacrifices in order to tackle the nation’s ever-mounting debt. Fortunately, the U.S. Army leapt on the impending fiscal grenade, sparing Americans from the horror of sacrificing for the well-being of the nation.
But in doing so, the Army paid a heavy price: it was forced to accept massive budget cuts, and reduce the size of the Active-Duty Army to 430,000 soldiers. By fiscal year 2015, over 140,000 soldiers will be looking for a new line of work.
Nevertheless, the Army's noble sacrifice prevented Congress from having to reach an agreement, after months of heated talks.
Choking back crocodile tears, Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) was grateful for the Army commitment to service.
“The U.S. Army has tirelessly borne the brunt of war over the past decade," said Kerry, "so if there's anyone who has plenty of experience in the whole sacrifice department, it's definitely them."
Kerry went on to thank the Army for its selfless service, but added, "It’s just, well, for 140,000 of you, your services are no longer required." He was unavailable for further comment, as he was preparing to spend New Year's Eve at his mansion in the Cayman Islands, on which he pays no taxes.
The Army's heroic actions spared Americans from almost certain inconvenience. Americans can enjoy the gift of life, made even sweeter due to the fact that they now pay less in taxes than they did during the 1980s, and certainly less than nearly every industrialized country in the world.
"Let us not forget this day," said House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), after the award was announced. "These heroics will always be remembered, until we screw up something else of course. The U.S. Army gave up its budget so that others may live, off the government's dime."
The Army's actions not only saved everyday Americans the burden of higher taxes and cuts to popular government programs, but it also saved the lives of millions of defense programs.
Gen. Mark A. Welsh III, Chief of Staff of the Air Force, released a statement saying, "thanks to the U.S. Army's heroic sacrifice, we were able to buy three additional F-22 Raptors."
"Never before have so many sacrificed for so little," he added.