Your Tax Dollars at Work

 

By C.J. JANOVY

I can’t let this tax day pass without thanking the nice anti-war activists over at PeaceWorks Kansas City. A couple of weeks ago, they delivered a pizza to The Pitch offices – half a pizza, actually, meant to illustrate how the military gets more than half of the U.S. budget.

Along with the pie, and a pie chart, they gave us handouts showing the country’s astronomical defense spending – which wasn’t news to us, but it never hurts to stop and think about these things once in awhile, if you’re trying to be a good citizen. Among the food-for-thought items: The organization estimates that the U.S. defense budget made up nearly half of the total worldwide defense spending for 2004-2005, according to information from the Center for Defense Information in Washington, DC. If you added in an additional $25 billion appropriated to the Defense Department in 2005 for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, CDI reports, “the total U.S. military spending would exceed the total defense spending by the rest of the world combined.”

Hoo-ah!

Apparently the PeaceWorks folks didn’t have updated numbers for ’06 and ’07, but that’s OK. If you really want to celebrate tax day, you can log onto their Web site and watch the cost of the Iraq war escalate in real time.

After staring at that for awhile, if your head hasn’t exploded, you can click on this link, which will send you to the National Priorities Project’s cost-of-war counter, where you can break down the cost of the Iraq war by city and state. I’d give you the totals for Kansas City, but if you’re reading this just a few minutes after I wrote it, they’re already old.

Categories: News, Politics