"If the Bush administration succeeds in its latest request for funding the war in Iraq, the total cost would rise to $611.5 billion, according to the National Priorities Project, a nonprofit research group. The amount got us wondering: What would $611 billion buy?"They came up with some fascinating Boston-centric alternatives. Such as, building 4,000 replicas of Newton Central High School (at $156.5 million, the most expensive in Massachusetts). Or, the war funding could instead buy 14 million years of tuition, board and books at Harvard ... or 53 million years of tuition and fees at U-Mass. Or seven years of food and education for all the world's poor.
But, of course, $611.5 billion is too big a number to really grasp. What about our share of that cost ... the amount collected from those of us in Racine County? What could we have done with our portion, had we been given the chance?
Unless my calculator is toying with me, each of 300 million Americans paid an average of $2,038 of that $611.5 billion ($611.5 B / 300 M). The 2006 census said there are 196,096 of us living in Racine County ... which multiplies out (196,096 * $2,038) to a staggering $399,709,013 as our collective share. (And you were complaining about an $18 million jail expansion?)
What the hell, let's play government and just round it up to $400 million.
Now, what would you do here with that much money, if given the opportunity?
Don't be shy; we'd love to hear your suggestions. Best replies win a vote in the 2008 election.