Sunday, March 19, 2006

The Headline Says It All

Cost of Iraq war could surpass $1 trillion
Estimates vary, but all agree price is far higher than initially expected

(This excellent article by Martin Wolk, the Chief Economics Correspondent for MSNBC points out some information all citizens should keep in mind. What is the real cost of the Iraq War?)

By Martin Wolk
Chief economics correspondent
Updated: 7:25 p.m. ET March 17, 2006

One thing is certain about the Iraq war: It has cost a lot more than advertised. In fact, the tab grows by at least $200 million each and every day.


White House economic adviser Lawrence Lindsey was the exception to the rule, offering an "upper bound" estimate of $100 billion to $200 billion in a September 2002 interview with The Wall Street Journal. That figure raised eyebrows at the time, although Lindsey argued the cost was small, adding, "The successful prosecution of the war would be good for the economy.


The most current estimates of the war's cost generally start with figures from the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office, which as of January 2006 counted $323 billion in expenditures for the war on terrorism, including military action in Iraq and Afghanistan. Just this week the House approved another $68 billion for military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, which would bring the total allocated to date to about $400 billion. The Pentagon is spending about $6 billion a month on the war in Iraq, or about $200 million a day, according to the CBO. That is about the same as the gross domestic product of Nigeria.

Does Conservatism now mean they would like to spend ALL of your money? The Iraq war is unconstitutional, and plans need to be made along the lines of what Jack Murtha suggested last winter.

I will cite one example of what I think is one of the biggest lies of the Republican House members: Virgil Goode has completely followed the Bush regime in every program they wanted. Any deviation from it was approved by someone else. Recently, Virgil Goode gave the ill-gotten gains in the form of illegal campaign contributions away. Do you know who he gave them to? Around half went to a non-profit agency of some sort. Other money went to the SPCA, and a huge amount was spread around the Fifth District firehouses and rescue squads. Not only is the money not his to give away, it was given partially to people whose funding he has voted against time after time.

Two Hundred Million Dollars a day. You can all imagine for yourselves what that would buy. How much could our share of $200M a day do for local business development, roads, schools and other needs. It could rescue some areas from feeling like they have no choice but to accept things like a waste dump in place of true economic opportunity.

Virgil doesn't want to end the war, he wants to continue the status quo.

Not only is the war wrong, for too may reasons to list here; it is also a colossal waste of the treasury of this country. I am a veteran, and I am as interested in taking care of our troops as much as any flag-waver. But I am not for treating our soldiers and airmen like so much chattel, to be stop-lossed away from their families, given sub-standard equipment if at all, be subject to questionable food and water. The current administration is willing to break the military even further (Abu Ghraib, anyone?)than it already is.

We as citizens have to stand up for the troops and our country and say 'enough'; enough Iraqi civilian deaths, enough soldier deaths and no more troop placements sent to Iraq.

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