By Rori Black
According to the National Priorities Project (NPP), Colorado tax payers will give $2.1 billion in 2007 to fund the Iraqi war. It’s comforting to know that we are so flush that we can afford to throw cash, as well as our young men and women, as this fiasco.
Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey and car keys to teenage boys.
P. J. O’Rourke
The problem is that while we pay for an endless war, Colorado is becoming the third-world nation of states. While we are full of hubris about our quality of life, our beautiful scenery and our youthful, fit populace, money is being wasted abroad when it is direly needed here. According to a Colorado Fiscal Policy Institute report detailing where tax money is being allocated, Colorado is:
- 49th in covering the uninsured and low-income families under Medicaid
- 39th in improving our state highways per capita
- 48th in per-capital investment on higher education
- 34th in per-capita investment in public elementary and secondary schools
What can $2.1 billion provide?
- 42,840 Public Safety Officers our first line of defense against terrorism or
- 760,006 Children with Health Care or
- 257 New Elementary Schools or
- 391,561 Scholarships for University Students or
- 11,138 Affordable Housing Units or
- 2,772,721 Homes with Renewable Electricity
That’s just Colorado.
The cost to American taxpayers is $456 billion so far. If that money were spent locally, the following could have been provided.
- 5.7 million people could have been provided with health care coverage each year since the war began; AND
- 1 million affordable housing units could have been built; AND
- 430,000 school teachers could have been hired since the war began; AND
- 4.7 million students could have received tuition and fees for four years at a state university.
NPP gives a breakdown of the costs to 13 major cities, including NYC, Los Angeles, and Washington DC.