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Messed-up Human Priorities

My "how much is the Iraq war costing us?" clicker has now gone over $500 billion.

The National Priorities Project website http://www.nationalpriorities.org/ is actually pretty interesting. Check it out if you have a chance. It allows you to break costs down by state and community, too. I just did this for the community of Rochester, Minnesota. Apparently Rochester's portion of the war is $218 million.

Or, maybe you don't care about the cost of the Iraq war. Here's some other interesting stats for Rochester.

Each year, Rochester spends

$7.4 million on nuclear weapons (that would make my investment in nuclear weapons about $74 annually. How much is your investment?)

What could Rochester do with $7.4 million?

1,390 People with Health Care OR

5,546 Homes with Renewable Electricity OR

106 Public Safety Officers OR

76 Music and Arts Teachers OR

527 Scholarships for University Students OR

31 Affordable Housing Units OR

1,602 Children with Health Care OR

701 Head Start Places for Children OR

83 Elementary School Teachers OR

56 Port Container Inspectors

Pretty amazing stuff.

Most people simply don't care about the costs involved. You can be for the war or against the war, but you should know the costs. Whether we fight or not, the costs are real -- and as John McCain would say, the costs are high in both human lives and "treasure."

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