Friday, February 29, 2008

War in Iraq: A Bigger Rip-Off Than Cable

According to Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz, the Iraq War will cost the USA $3 trillion. That's three trillion -- three thousand stacks of dollar bills stacked a billion high each. A dollar sign, a three, twelve zeros, and a whole mess of commas.


This should add some perspective as we head deeper into the 2008 presidential and congressional campaigns and start hearing more and more from pro-endless-war "fiscal conservatives" about what we can't afford.

In a phrase, yes we can. We can afford what we prioritize.

The article cited above puts the $3 trillion in some perspective:

even one of these trillions could have paid for: 8 million housing units, or 15 million public school teachers, or healthcare for 530 million children for a year, or scholarships to university for 43 million students. Three trillion could have fixed America's social security problem for half a century.
Understand that these amazing amounts of money are in addition to regular defense spending. Also:
$138: The amount paid by every US household every month towards the current operating costs of the war

$19.3bn: The amount Halliburton has received in single-source contracts for work in Iraq

$5bn: Cost of 10 days' fighting in Iraq

$1 trillion: The interest America will have paid by 2017 on the money borrowed to finance the war
Do these incredible expenditures reflect our values and priorities? No.


this is cross-posted on my personal blog here