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Accountability? We don't need no stinkin' accountability!
September 18, 2003 2:37 PM   Subscribe

Where is our money going? According to the Congressional Budget Office, not only is the Bush administration asking for 87 billion dollars to cover Iraqi reconstruction, but they're also unable to account for 2.5 billion of the 4 billion dollars that they're spending per month in Iraq.
posted by bshort (34 comments total)

 
According to the article, you've got it backwards: the $2.5 billion out of $4 billion is what they can account for. But the general point stands.
posted by Locke at 3:10 PM on September 18, 2003


Oh come on now, don't you misplace $1,500,000,000 all the time? I bet its in the government's other pair of pants.

Here, let me boil the whole article down. The war in Iraq was a smokescreen and Bush has no idea how to extract the US from it. Terrorists are still operating virtually unchecked, North Korea has nukes and Bush is laughing about a fresh booger he picked and showed to Laura.
posted by fenriq at 3:16 PM on September 18, 2003



Dear America, Thanks for the money, sorry about your kids,

-Halliburton Oil

posted by elwoodwiles at 3:17 PM on September 18, 2003


What? You expect the government to be accountable to the people? What are you, some sort of terrorist sympathizer?
posted by keswick at 3:19 PM on September 18, 2003


Thanks for the spit take, fenriq. :)

What's sad is that Congress, Kennedy's rhetoric aside, is having to go hat in hand to Bush and beg him to tell them what he's doing with the money. Spineless, posturing bastards.
posted by FormlessOne at 3:25 PM on September 18, 2003


Maybe I'm alone on this, but what I find most frightening is not this article, and the thousands of others like them, but the fact that most Americans (with the exception of you and me and about 17,000 others like us out there on the Internet) honestly don't care about this. I meet many of them every day. When engaged in conversation in topics like this one they just shrug and say something like "I don't really follow the news" or "eh, well politics is corrupt, what do you expect".

Its more than disheartening, its downright frightening. I mean, I suppose they are, in fact, getting the government they deserve, but damn it I deserve better.
posted by anastasiav at 3:25 PM on September 18, 2003


Where does the "17,000" come from?
posted by Eloquence at 3:36 PM on September 18, 2003


Where does the "17,000" come from?

The Book of Revelation, 22:5
posted by mathis23 at 3:46 PM on September 18, 2003


anastasiav, here here. I deserve better too.
posted by fenriq at 3:48 PM on September 18, 2003


Damn straight. I deserve better too.
posted by Keyser Soze at 3:50 PM on September 18, 2003


I don't deserve better, but I certainly want better.

Won't someone think of the children?
posted by luriete at 3:53 PM on September 18, 2003


According to this, our problems will soon be over.
posted by Domain Master 666 at 3:59 PM on September 18, 2003


According to the article, you've got it backwards: the $2.5 billion out of $4 billion is what they can account for. But the general point stands.

Oops, sorry about that. Yeah, it's only 1.5 billion a week that they can't account for.

A week.
posted by bshort at 6:03 PM on September 18, 2003


Or rather, a month.
posted by bshort at 6:24 PM on September 18, 2003


Account for, can't account for; $2.5M, $1.5M; week, month...

Are you sure it's wasn't the UK & Blair, not US & Bush?
posted by five fresh fish at 6:46 PM on September 18, 2003


bshort, apparently you have ideal qualifications to work in the Accounting Office for the Bush administration. Way to go!
posted by theora55 at 6:49 PM on September 18, 2003


I'm going to go kiss Chretien now. He's profiting hugely by comparison.
posted by orange swan at 7:04 PM on September 18, 2003


Y'know, that's ok. It's only $1.5 billion. I'm sure Halliburton's taxes will easily cover that.

...oh wait, they don't pay taxes do they...
posted by fatbobsmith at 7:51 PM on September 18, 2003


"eh, well politics is corrupt, what do you expect".

Hmm, that sounds familiar.


Wearing Out and Adding Up - Bradleys in Iraq need new tracks every 60 days, at $22,576 per vehicle. As many as a third of the Bradleys patrolling the dangerous "Sunni Triangle" are out of commission. The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. is ramping up production for new tracks, while the Army is running three shifts a day, seven days a week, rebuilding old tracks at the Red River Army Depot in Texas, but workers are still three months behind the Army's demands. Tracks are being flown to Baghdad as fast as they can be made, then apportioned to the units that need them most.

The tracks this fiscal year will have cost $230 million, nearly triple the $78 million the Army spent on track repair and replacement in 2002.

In documents released to Congress, the administration says it will need $1.9 billion for emergency procurement. Of that, $143 million would buy 595 heavily armored Humvees. Including sophisticated computer tracking systems and other advanced equipment, the Humvee costs could be nearly $250,000 each, an Army official said. The White House also wants $300 million for about 60,000 three-piece body-armor suits, so Army commanders can issue flak jackets to virtually every soldier in Iraq.

"Here's a blinding flash of the obvious," one Army official said. "There is no front line out there."


Humvees are running through their tires to a tune of a quarter billion dollars so far. The Iraqi power grid must be entirely replaced. coughMeanwhileMostMassiveNorthAmericanBlackoutEvercough Baghdad water and sewer must be replaced. None of these were anticipated by The Project for A New American Just Add Water Iraqi Democracy Rosiest Scenario Only Century Pentagon Planners. Criminal neglect is the phrase that comes to mind, criminal neglect.
posted by y2karl at 8:03 PM on September 18, 2003


Well, I think we're fucked.
Former ambassador Joseph Wilson interview at Talking Points Memo.

We see the world through the stories we tell, and until recently the story most Americans told themselves about the war in Iraq was a simple and dramatic narrative of imminent threat, daring triumph, and heroic liberation —a story neatly embodied in images of a dictator's toppling statue and a president in full flight gear swaggering across a carrier deck. Those pictures, once so bright and clear, have now faded, giving place to a second, darker story beneath: the story of an unfinished war, undertaken for murky reasons, that has left young Americans ruling indefinitely over people who do not welcome them and who are killing more and more of them each day. As long as Saddam Hussein remains at large, as long as the weapons our leaders said were threatening us are not found, and as long as Iraqis go on killing Americans, this second, darker story may come to blot out and finally to mock the memory of the first.

From the NYRB, Iraq: The New War
posted by y2karl at 8:15 PM on September 18, 2003


file under, "misc. freedom related expenses."
posted by mcsweetie at 8:30 PM on September 18, 2003


And don't forget Saudis consider nuclear bomb!

Oh, just what we had in mind--right?
posted by y2karl at 8:46 PM on September 18, 2003


Lick Bush in '04.
posted by LouReedsSon at 9:25 PM on September 18, 2003


Clearly, the $1.5 billion a month is some kind of deferred compensation package for Dick Cheney.
posted by MegoSteve at 9:57 PM on September 18, 2003


2 U.S. Fronts: Quick Wars, but Bloody Peace

Key Security Initiatives Founder in Afghanistan
posted by homunculus at 10:08 PM on September 18, 2003


Max Cleland: Mistakes of Vietnam repeated with Iraq
posted by homunculus at 10:35 PM on September 18, 2003


y2karl, why do you so hate liberty?

One: The US military is a force of freedom, regardless of where or why or how.

Two: those who resist or fight against freedom are, by definition, terrorists.

Three: Iraqis are resisting our freedom force. Four: Therefore, the new center stage in the war on terror is Iraq.

Five: Profit!

1.5 billion is a small price to pay to keep oil in freedom's lamp.

(I apologize for resorting to sarcasm, which I acknowledge is the voice of weakness. Fact is, I have taken to crawling around on all fours and typing my posts by randomly pounding my head into the keyboard. Will this fucking nightmare never end?)
posted by squirrel at 11:55 PM on September 18, 2003


Bush just told Bono he can't spare an extra $1 billion for next year's funding of much touted AIDS relief programs. Meaning he's conceivably misplacing every four weeks an amount of money that could have really helped fight a global pandemic for an entire year.
posted by pzarquon at 12:00 AM on September 19, 2003


I suppose they are, in fact, getting the government they deserve, but damn it I deserve better.

This is my new motto. I suggest that we use it as a response everytime a Bush apologist tries to use one of those lame arguments here on Metafilter when somebody points out yet another shortcoming of the Bush adminstration.

I suppose you are, in fact, getting the government you deserve, but damn it I deserve better!

I like.

.
posted by sic at 5:06 AM on September 19, 2003


Whew!

Squirrel had me believing he was serious for a second there!

He sounded sooo like Instacracker or littlegreensnotballs or Sullivan or Hitchens or Will or Goldberg or ...aah, you know the list as well as I do.
posted by nofundy at 5:12 AM on September 19, 2003


The UN has done a study which determines that for 80 or 90 billion dolllars a years, most disease, malnutrition and illiteracy in the world could be eliminated.

Ooops. Silly me. We can't afford that - we need to spend it on Bradley fighting vehicles tracks and body armor, Halliburton executive compensation packages, Iraqi oil field infrastructure.........
posted by troutfishing at 5:41 AM on September 19, 2003


The UN has done a study which determines that for 80 or 90 billion dollars a years, most disease, malnutrition and illiteracy in the world could be eliminated.

And I'll bet you dollars to donuts that that would do more to curb international terrorism than our current policy of invading every country that looks at us funny (and doesn't have nukes).
posted by bshort at 6:20 AM on September 19, 2003


Okay, so there seem to be a glut of sensible people here.

How did Bush get elected, then? Why the hell didn't a candidate with the sorts of sensibilities and mores displayed here get most of the nation's vote?

Either you sensible folk are a scarce commodity in your country, or you didn't vote sensibly.
posted by five fresh fish at 8:56 AM on September 19, 2003


Why the hell didn't a candidate with the sorts of sensibilities and mores displayed here get most of the nation's vote?

One did.
posted by Wulfgar! at 9:03 AM on September 19, 2003


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