How would you spend $340,000,000,000?

I should be studying for my Thursday pathology final, but I decided to be un-patriotic on this election day.

I'm well-known to be cheap. Really cheap. Some have even called it "Murphy-cheap." I'm careful how I spend money, I track what I spend every month with Quicken, and my friends make fun of me for it.

Right now I'm in a mood for a game, so let's play good news, bad news, good news.

1. Good News: I got a great deal at BiLo today.
Although BiLo tries to make me use a privacy invasion card (They call it the Bi-Lo Bonus Card), I like to shop there. This past week, they had a great special: 2 frozen pizzas, breadsticks, a six-pack of coke, and ice cream for about $10. I call it the student's "clog your arteries special." I just can't imagine a cheaper, faster way to get Atherosclerosis.

2. Bad News: Kia's are cheaper than bombs, and maybe we should have bought off Iraq instead of Bombing it:
Today, I started wondering how much money we've wasted/spent on the military action in Iraq.

Naturally, I googled "how much cost of war iraq," and it was easy to see that a few other people have asked the same question. Perhaps the US government could have a use for quicken.

According to, the US has spent about $340,572,742,503 (as of 11:26pm EST today). And to think I thought that the only number around here that was about to turn into an infinity sign was my student loan balance.

If the population of the US is about 300,000,000 people, then that means we've spent um... my Excel calculations say that's about $1135.24 per American citizen or about $4500 per family of four in order to remove Sadam and have him sentenced to death by hanging.

Slighty more disconcerting is how much we're spending in Iraq for each Iraqi. According to the CIA World Factbook, Iraq's population is about 26.7 million people. Given that $340 billion price tag, the United States has spent roughly $12,734 per Iraqi citizen. More info on cost of the war here, here, and here.

At that rate, why didn't we just buy them all Kia's to be our friends?

Maybe that gazillion dollar balance could have gone towards lowering my out-of-this-world tuition at MUSC. $340 billion could make for something like 24 million 4 year scholarships, ya know.

I don't believe in leaving on a bad note, so here's the good news.

3. Good News: I've never had a real job and haven't paid any substantial taxes, so maybe it's somebody else's money that we've been wasting all this time... sort of.

So how would you spend $340,000,000,000?


posted by Josh M on 11:22 PM


jaz said...

I would spend $340,000,000,000 to develop alternative sources of energy so we wouldn't be constantly shoveling endless funds over to the Middle East buying oil and therefore putting enormous personal wealth in the hands of many who have gone on record as hating us.

KStewDawg said...

I think I would use it to privitize education. (Of course, I would pay off my debts first :)

Philip Murphy said...

I'm not sure buying a kia makes anoyone your friend. If you're my "friend" and you buy me a Kia... I may punch you.

Josh M said...

I think I'd pay off my student loans and use what's left to buy a burger.

DK said...

I agree with Philip, Kias don't make friends. However, one might investigate the prospect of dropping GPS guided Kias from F/A-18s. I'll get the Navy on the phone tomorrow.

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