In the Washington Post yesterday, Christopher Hitchens attempted to refute former Chief Economist of the World Bank Joseph Stiglitz on the latter’s calculation of the cost of the Iraq war.
I’m not going to bother to comment on Hitchens and his long-since-discredited, neocon-authored notions used in an attempt to rationalize this tragic military escapade since others better than I have refuted him on this already (all disguised not so cleverly in Hitchens’ typically windy suppositions and rambling, tiresome prose – maybe “pot, meet kettle” for yours truly on that, but there you are). However, this sentence stood out for me…
If you think I am being unkind or frivolous (in responding to Stiglitz and co-author Linda J. Bilmes), see if you can detect the thread of reasoning that connects Iraq expenditures with the crisis in the mortgage system.All right, smart guy, I will; check this out…
The spending on Iraq was a hidden cause of the current credit crunch because the US central bank responded to the massive financial drain of the war by flooding the American economy with cheap credit.And speaking of spending on Iraq, this recent post from georgia10 at The Daily Kos is a must-read (I hesitate to say that, but it’s really true in this case).
"The regulators were looking the other way and money was being lent to anybody this side of a life-support system," (Stiglitz) said.
That led to a housing bubble and a consumption boom, and the fallout was plunging the US economy into recession and saddling the next US president with the biggest budget deficit in history, he said.
Go ahead and keep flailing away at the world with tales of Iraq sanctions that supposedly cost more than the war, the dangers of enforcing no-fly zones and apocalyptic images of burning Kuwaiti oil fields, Hitchens. Nobody cares about this stuff anymore except you and the other lockstep moonbats who think that what is essentially a stalemate after almost five years of the Iraq occupation translates into success.
Update 3/14/08: I forgot about this "golden moment" also (h/t Atrios).