Tuesday, March 22, 2011

"The War in Libya and the Deficit at Home"

Good read by Derek Thompson at The Atlantic today. Here's a piece:

"The Tomahawk missiles falling on Libya, for example, cost about $700,000 each. The United States fired 110 of those missiles on Saturday, totaling $81 million. 'That's about 33 times the amount of money National Public Radio receives in grants each year from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, which the House of Representatives also wants to de-fund in the name of austerity measures,' Abu Muqawama writes. The initial stages of the war could cost the U.S. between $400 million and $800 million, according to the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments. That's almost half the controversial cuts to heating subsidies for low-income families."
I'm pretty annoyed that the Administration is going forward with the action without being forthright. Pundits on the left and right are decrying the "murkiness" of our goals. What's the end-game? Fine, we depose Qaddafi, but then what? We currently have troops engaged in actions in Iraq, Yemen (covertly), and now Libya while also fighting the losing battle in Afghanistan/Pakistan. Yet, we need to scrap domestic programs that do some good here and now? We don't mind that civilians are being massacred in Bahrain and Yemen because the Arab League says it's none of our business but happily bomb Libya because they invited us? Does it bother anyone else that France and Britain were so trigger-happy over Libya while at the same time pulling out of Iraq (Britain) and Afghanistan ASAP? Are they driven by Libyan oil or something more sinister?

I don't think the media is asking these questions hard/fast enough. I want to believe in U.S. and global economic recovery (as the market seems to) but foreign quagmires dampen my hopes considerably.

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