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Tuesday, May 15, 2007

What this war could have funded. . .

The Boston Globe recently ran this enlightening piece on the true cost of the Iraq war:

While there is some disagreement on the idea of troop deadlines for US soldiers in Iraq, all sides seem to be on board with the amount included in the bill to fund the war.

Including the $124.2 billion bill, the total cost of the Iraq war may reach $456 billion in September, according to the National Priorities Project, an organization that tracks public spending.

The amount got us wondering: What would $456 billion buy?

Tagged as the most expensive high school in Massachusetts, at $154.6 million, Newton North High School could be replicated almost 3,000 times using the money spent on the war.

At almost $15 billion, Boston's Central Artery project has been held up as the nation's most expensive public works project. Now multiply that by 30 and you're getting close to US taxpayer’s commitment to democracy in Iraq… so far.

US drivers consume approximately 384.7 million gallons of gasoline a day. Retail prices averaged $2.64 a gallon in 2006. Breaking it down, $456 billion could buy gasoline for everybody in the United States, for about 449 days.

With just one-sixth of the US money targeted for the Iraq war, you could convert all cars in America to run on ethanol.

TheBudgetGraph.com estimates that converting the 136,568,083 registered cars in the United States to ethanol (conversion kits at $500) would cost $68.2 billion.

At published rates for next year, $456 billion translates into 14.5 million free rides for a year at Harvard; 44 million at UMass.

In fiscal 2008, Medicare benefits will total $454 billion, according to a Heritage Foundation summary.


According to World Bank estimates, $54 billion a year would eliminate starvation and malnutrition globally by 2015, while $30 billion would provide a year of primary education for every child on earth.

At the upper range of those estimates, the $456 billion cost of the war could have fed and educated the world's poor for five and a half years.

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5 Comments:

Blogger Robert Rouse said...

You forgot to mention that $456-Billion dollars would also purchase 456-Billion Junior Bacon Cheeseburgers at Wendy's.

This is enough to buy every single man, woman, and child in China a complete set of Beatles CDs.

You could put a Dale Earnhardt Angel Wings bumper sticker on every car, truck and van in North America.

Enough to bribe crooks into voting against their principals in the name of the almighty dollar.

But most of all, it could help a lot of people. Not that everybody's into that kind of thing - but it's who I am.

title="comment permalink">May 15, 2007 8:30 PM  
Blogger John Good said...

- I LOVE a good burger! (As long as it isn't Timothy!)

- Hasn't that market already been reached? BTW - Hate Stars On if you must, but I would not have known half of the Beatles tunes in their single if I had never heard it! =)

- I am NOT a Nascar fan, but I hope Dale RIP's anyway!

- Wow! How prophetic. (See NEXT post)

- You are; you do well; good job!

title="comment permalink">May 15, 2007 9:13 PM  
Blogger John Q. Public esq. said...

yes, but you would have to have someone of worth to hold the check book, any ideas?

title="comment permalink">May 15, 2007 10:48 PM  
Blogger Stan Matuska said...

My understanding is that our entire electrical grid is very old and needs replaced. I heard the amount of money going to Iraq would cover the cost of an entire electrical grid replacement!!! How's that for putting the taxpayers money to good use!?

title="comment permalink">May 15, 2007 11:00 PM  
Blogger John Good said...

JQP - I can think of several.

Stan - The possibilities are nearly endless! What a freakin' waste of lives and money for NOTHING. . .

title="comment permalink">May 16, 2007 8:16 PM  

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