Deconstructing the Bush Agenda on the Economics of War


Some discouraging facts: The U.S. has been spending $4 billion a month in Iraq since January 2003. Remember Afghanistan? We know it was never Bush’s top priority, but $900 million a month? And here? Bush has turned a10-year $5.6 trillion surplus into a 10-year $5.2 trillion deficit, gutted the Social Security trust fund, and significantly cut job-training programs for low-income and jobless workers despite his latest budget claims—not that it matters. Between 2001 and 2003, 2.4 million jobs were eliminated, according to the Economic Policy Institute. We’ve gained a million since, but is that all that comforting? At least 8 million people are still jobless. A solution: More than 1,000 troops have died in Iraq who have to be replaced, right? So if we keep sending soldiers to die in ill-advised wars for the next four years, we should be OK. Giving us other possible recourses are Salon columnist Joe Conason (Big Lies: The Right-Wing Propaganda Machine and How It Distorts the Truth) and Boston Globe columnist James Carroll (Crusade: Chronicles of an Unjust War) in panel discussion with the New School’s World Policy Institute director Stephen Schlesinger. It would sure help if some on-the-fence voters came along, but if not, liberals can feast on deconstruction of the Bush agenda (still insisting on foreign policy over free-falling economy). Pace Derrida, every initiative is already deconstructed—but we appreciate someone pointing it out.