Here are some things, we CAN afford, however:
In spite of clichés about Nascar dads and Walmart moms, the actual share of voters nationally who are up for grabs is probably between just 3 percent and 5 percent in this election, polling experts say. The Obama and Romney campaigns are expected to spend on the order of $2 billion, in part to try to sway this tiny share of the electorate.http://marginalrevolution.com/marginalrevolution/2012/08/all-this-just-for-them.html
That's right, two billion dollars not going for alternative transportation or infrastructure, but rather to persuade a few million"low information voters" to vote for KFC instead of Taco Bell. Oh, and what else can we afford?
U.S. Customs and Border Patrol is spending big - just under $100 million - to combat drug smugglers who use small aircraft worth only a few thousand dollars each to ferry narcotics into the U.S.http://news.yahoo.com/heres-100m-now-catch-those-drug-smuggling-ultralights-163443426--abc-news-topstories.html
So the next time you hear the Tea Party complain about how "broke" we are, you might want to cast an eye of suspicion. We're not broke, we're spending plenty of money on the wrong things.
If you heard the latest Extraenvironmentalist podcast, you heard the guest talk about how the smartest thing we can do is to start moving people by rail instead of by airplane, especially for trips under 500 miles. He also recommended investing in a high quality DC grid to prepare for the evental electrification of transport, and stated, "Fifty years from now if you haven’t figured out how to run your society on less oil, than your economy will shrink." I guess that's what we're in for, thanks to the supposedly uber-capitalist Tea party, who, as I posted a bit ago, are now opposing streetcars here in Milwaukee. Face it, a dumbed-down reactionary America will never invest in the things we will need to make a functional economy in the age of diminishing petroleum supplies.
And in other news, No One Will Charged With a Crime for the MF Global Collapse (Yahoo!)