How Can We Afford War But Not Health Care?
Gene Lyons in Salon wonders how we can afford $1 million per solider per year for war, but the same people who have no trouble with $6.73 trillion for fighting in Afghanistan are stingy when it comes to spending money for health care. (via Crooks and Liars)
Almost every time you turn on the television, somebody’s carrying on about the projected trillion-dollar cost of Democratic health-insurance reforms — derived by multiplying the $100 billion yearly cost by 10, and often by ignoring the projected $11 billion yearly savings to the U.S. budget deficit.
Pentagon spending this year alone, however, columnist David Sirota points out, is projected at $673 billion, for a 10-year total of $6.73 trillion. That’s assuming costs don’t rise. (Fat chance.) Giving McChrystal the soldiers he wants, along with training and equipping an Afghan army of dubious loyalty, is projected to cost an additional $40 billion to $50 billion each year. Yet nobody’s supposed to ask how anything that happens in that remote land could possibly justify the costs.
Is Afghanistan really a threat?
Are the barbarians at the gates? Hardly. There are no battlefronts, no standing armies, and no immediate military threat to the United States. U.S. intelligence estimates that maybe 100 ragtag al-Qaida fighters remain scattered across the Afghan outback.
But there’s money to be made with war. Remember that no-bid contract for Iraq?Click here for reuse options!
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