Most of the time God,Pratt & Whitney or General Electric, will give you another turn in the Barrel.

These are my opinions and my opinions only they do not reflect the opinions of any of my family members or their employer. Note we NOW have NO employers.

Back from a 5.5 Year PCS from the confines of the far Southwest corner of Bundesrepublik Deutschland. The Federal Republic of Germany and Retired.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

And You Wonder Why?

As the United States Operation in Iraq enter the next to last phase, extracting all of our operational personnel and equipment associated with “Operation Iraqi Freedom” out Iraq and gets them to Kuwait for preparation and transport back to CONUS, we the people of the United States do not know what this side trip down the rabbit hole has really cost the country.
Something we know with an exacting precision.  We know that at the end of Sept 2011, a total of 4,483 members of the United States Armed Forces were listed as Killed in Action.  We know that at the end of Sept 2011 a total of 32,200 members of the United States Armed Forces were listed as Wounded in Action.  Concerning these individual what we do not know and will never know is the associated misery and suffer that was a result of their loss.
That is not the only thing the United States Government cannot determine with any certainty.   The other is the  dollar cost of the trip down the rabbit hole.  The Bush Administrations initial published estimates was $60,000,000,000 (60 Billion Dollars).  The current administration has published estimates of the cost in the range of $845,000,000,000 (845 Billion Dollars).  We only missed the Bush/Rumsfeld estimated number by a factor of 14.  Although now it looks more like a WAG (Wild Ass Guess).   Some might argue that it should be a SWAG, but that for another rant.
If we could get an accounting of the cost to within normally accepted margins of error, 10%, 1%, or .01%, and the current number of 845 Billion Dollars is closed the “Actual Cost” we are looking at anywhere between 84.5 Billion Dollars to 84.5 Million Dollars of error in the number being provided.
And you thought that Accounting was precise, well as far as the Federal Government is concern you are very sadly mistaken.  Now as no other time in the history of the United States have the prophetic words of Everett Dirksen, Republican Senator Illinois, 1950-1969, have been more salient to the nation and our current circumstance.  Three come immediately to mind.
“We are becoming so accustomed to millions and billions of dollars that "thousands" has almost passed out of the dictionary.”
 “A billion here, a billion there, and pretty soon you're talking about real money”.
Probably his most prophetic statement is
“I have said, with respect to authorization bills, that I do not want the Congress or the country to commit fiscal suicide on the installment plan.”
Which is exactly what the Congress and the administration have done since 2003.
Off the book expenditure for the Wars on top of the existing DOD Budget are as follows:
Fiscal Year
Billion Dollars

For those of you that are counting via the installment plan for fiscal suicide the Congress and three Administrations (Bush Terms 1 and 2, Obama 1) have spent or authorized 994.7 Billion Dollars that we did not have, that we did not commit existing revenue streams to cover, that we did not commit additional revenue streams to cover.  And you wonder WHY.

No comments:

Post a Comment