CNN’s Cafferty Asks How Trillions Needed for Wars Could Be Better Spent

CNN’s Jack Cafferty, in his "Cafferty File" segment on Wednesday’s "The Situation Room," asked how the $2.4 trillion, which the Congressional Budget Office estimated would be the cost for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan over the next decade, could be better spent. Apparently, Cafferty, who is a well-known opponent of the Iraq war, also thinks that money being spent in Afghanistan for operations against al Qaeda and the Taliban could also be put to better use.

Cafferty’s "Question of the Hour" came 11 minutes into the 4 pm Eastern hour of "The Situation Room." He included that this figure "amounts to about $8,000 for every man, woman, and child in this country" and that it includes "$700 billion in interest, since these wars are all being fought on borrowed money to begin with. And more than 70% of this money would go to the war in Iraq." Cafferty also included that apparently "as of September 30th, the two wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have cost $604 billion. That's more than either Korea or Vietnam, and there's no end in sight to this thing."

The CNN commentator concluded by sarcastically asking, "Hey, it's not like we couldn't use the money at home or anything, right? Let's see what happens when Congress addresses President Bush's latest request for tens of billions of additional dollars to wage war."

At the end of the hour, Cafferty read some of the responses to his question, and besides the typical laments and suggestion you might hear from the liberal blogosphere, he included two conservative responses, one from an apparent critic of Cafferty.

CAFFERTY: The question this hour is: The Congressional Budget Office estimates the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan will cost $2.4 trillion through the next decade. So, we asked, how do you think that money can be better spent?

Jeff writes from Maryland: 'I'm convinced the Iraq war was 43's re-election centerpiece, making the 2004 presidential race truly the most expensive political contest in history. He drained the U.S. Treasury, and indebted generations of Americans to come, to ensure he would hold on to the White House. Quite a feat for a National Guard pilot of some distinction, eh?.'

Eric in Michigan: 'Where to begin!? What about higher education? I feel like I'm fighting a war of my own against these student loans I've had to take out.'

Linda in Illinois writes: 'The money cannot be better spent than on and for our freedom. How much is your freedom worth? I would gladly pay three times the $8,000 that is my share. Where do I send the check?'

Jeff in Orlando Florida: 'How about funding full medical coverage for all U.S. citizens, funding Social Security, and with the leftover money, impeach George the almighty and fire the Congress?' Hey, there's an idea.

Joaquin writes: 'Since it's borrowed money, maybe we shouldn't spend it? Why must we burden our children's children with our debt? It's about time this nation understands this war is ruining the financial stability of this country.'

Jack on Long Island writes: 'That amount of money could be used to place solar panels on every home in America. We could become energy independent, and the entire Arab world will have to figure out something to do with their now-worthless black lead.'

And Tom in Maine writes: 'Jack, the money could be better spent by using it to buy out your contract, so we wouldn't have to listen to your endless, biased, anti-Bush droning.' They could buy it out for a lot less than that.

Well, you can’t fault Cafferty for having a sense of humor at times.

Matthew Balan
Matthew Balan
Matthew Balan is a news analyst at Media Research Center