Paying for the Wars

The Iraq and Afghanistan wars had an extremely negative effect on the U.S. economy.

Before the Iraq war, White House economic adviser Lawrence Lindsay estimated the cost at $100 to $200 billion. When Bush didn’t like that number, he got rid of him and re-estimated the cost at $50 to $60 billion in 2003. The direct cost of the Iraq war is now over $850 billion and counting.

Indirect costs of veterans’ healthcare and disability will run between $422 and $717 billion.

Some estimates total the cost of both wars at $4 trillion.

The cost of the wars was paid for entirely by debt at the same time that Bush cut taxes. The Center for Budget and Policy Priorities has estimated that the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, together with the Bush tax cuts, will account for almost half of the projected $20 trillion debt by 2019.

This math works. If Bush hadn’t added $2 trillion to the debt during his term, the economy would not have crashed before he walked out of the Oval Office and Obama would not have had to spend another $4 trillion we didn’t have during his first term.

While this doesn’t mean that Bush and Obama would not have found other ways to spend the money, the moral is still this:

Stop invading other countries!


2 thoughts on “Paying for the Wars

  1. I agree on Iraq and I agree that we should never fund war with deficit spending. However killing Osama bin Laden was worth ever penny we borrowed from China to do it;-)

Leave a Reply