War -- or a million more teachers?


I love these kinds of statistics. You want a reminder of why this country seems so broke all the time? It's right here, in this nifty Consumer Federation of California report, brought to you by Calitics. California taxpayers have spent $38 billion supporting the war in Afghanistan -- a war that has little point and that we can't possibly win. No outside power ever wins in Afghanistan; it's a country only in name, a collection of tribal fiefdoms that's nearly impossible to govern, impossible to conquer and very, very costly to engage on a military level.

Remember what Kipling said about 100 year ago, when Great Britain was (foolishly) trying to fight where we're (foolishly) trying to fight:

When you're wounded and left on Afghanistan's plains,
And the women come out to cut up what remains,
Jest roll to your rifle and blow out your brains
An' go to your Gawd like a soldier.

And here's what we could be doing instead with $38 billion in California:

•    15.6 million people with health care;
•    5.7 million scholarships and 7 million Pell Grants for university students;
•    4.5 million Head Start placements for children;
•    500,000 new elementary school teachers;
•    676,649 public safety officers;
•    535,058 music and arts teachers;
•    113,373 affordable housing units;
•    And 67.4 million homes with renewable electricity.

Just worth remembering every time our distinguished representatives in Washington vote to continue spending money in Afghanistan.




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