By Joseph E. Stiglitz, Linda J. Bilmes
The precise fee of the Iraq conflict is $3 trillion—and counting—rather than the $50 billion projected through the White House. except its tragic human toll, the Iraq struggle can be staggeringly pricey in monetary phrases.
This sobering learn by means of Nobel Prize winner Joseph E. Stiglitz and Harvard professor Linda J. Bilmes casts a focus on cost goods that were hidden from the U.S. taxpayer, together with not just big-ticket goods like exchanging army apparatus (being used up at six instances the peacetime price) but additionally the associated fee of taking care of hundreds of thousands of wounded veterans—for the remainder of their lives. transferring to an international concentration, the authors examine the price in lives and fiscal harm inside of Iraq and the sector. ultimately, with the chilling precision of an actuary, the authors degree what the united states taxpayer's cash might have produced if as an alternative it were invested within the additional progress of the U.S. economic system. Written in language so simple as the main points are irritating, this booklet will perpetually switch the best way we expect in regards to the battle. .
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Extra info for The Three Trillion Dollar War: The True Cost of the Iraq Conflict
S. government pays the premiums to insurance companies for the contractors. S. 44 Contracting is at record levels, with over 100,000 contractors operating in Iraq; and with so many contractors, not surprisingly, the expenses mount. Two costs are incurred by the government: the cost of insurance premiums and the cost of payouts. It is difficult to estimate how much the government spends on insurance premiums, because no agency regulates the premiums, and no one tracks the overall costs. Insurance premiums are estimated to cost between 10-21 percent of salaries.
The number of "category 4" recruits—those who score lowest on aptitude tests— has risen. 34 The Army National Guard, Army Reserves, and Marine Reserves also have experienced recruiting shortfalls. S. Naval Academy have fallen 10—20 percent from their prewar levels. The Army is already predicting a shortage of 3,000 line officers in 2007, despite giving faster promotions (from captain to major), bonuses, and other perks. 36 The military has responded by hiring thousands of additional recruiters, increasing its national advertising campaigns, and offering sign-up bonuses of up to $40,000 for new recruits.
And equipment in larger quantity will have to be sent off to depots—or be replaced. While this more-thorough process of "resetting" the force is underway, units will have to make do with less or with lower quality equipment. For this reason, the postwar reset will constitute a refractory period— a period of diminished readiness. The Army will retain over 280,000 pieces of major equipment in Iraq until the end of the mission.... Decreased equipment readiness is not the only cost that will persist into the postwar period.
The Three Trillion Dollar War: The True Cost of the Iraq Conflict by Joseph E. Stiglitz, Linda J. Bilmes