The current talk is that the cost of the war in Afghanistan and Iraq will be 2.4 trillion dollars over 10 years.
2.4 trillion dollars is 2,400,000 million dollars. With the US population about 300 million, this is 8,000 dollars for every man, woman and child in the country right now. It is equal to about 800 dollars for every man, woman and child for 10 years, every year.
No, of course the government and its economists will say that much of that money is coming back into the economy through contractors. Speak: Halliburton, Blackwater and others. That is true.
However, we could have given every person in this country 8,000 dollars and been just as well off. If every person in this country had spent his or her 8,000 dollars on boats, vacations, clothes, cars, motorcycles and consumer electronics, all of the money would have made it back into the economy.
As it stands right now, much of that money goes into building infrastructure in Iraq, and even more, I venture to say, goes into corrupt channels.
I don’t have figures on what it costs to rebuild roads, freeways and bridges. I venture to guess that we could have rebuilt a good percentage of this entire country’s infrastructure right here for that money. I remember that every time I drive along a crumbling freeway in Los Angeles.
The whole mess exists in the first place because of the grandiose ego of one man who appears to have cajoled and coerced his subordinates following his line.
Would he have done it, had he known he was making a 2.4 trillion dollar commitment? Would he have done it, had he known that an entire generation would have to pay for years to clean this up?