Sunday, 11 January 2009

Bush Administration, by the numbers

Salon and Harper's have both recently published "Harper's Index" style breakdowns on the Bush admin. I've extracted a few "highlights" here, the actual lists are much longer

1) From Salon (
  • Budget / surplus deficit 2000: + $128 B
  • Budget / surplus deficit 2008: - $900 B
  • Median household income 2000: $51,804
  • Median household income 2007: $50,233
  • Ultimate cost of Iraq War: $3 trillion
  • Amount the Bush administration estimated it would cost: $60 billion (1/50th of the actual amount!)
  • Number of detainees in Iraq and Afghanistan who have died in U.S. custody according to Human Rights Watch: nearly 100 (report)
  • Number of people in U.S. custody who have disappeared according to Amnesty International: at least 36 (report)
  • Cost of healthcare as a percentage of GDP: 16% (As I regularly note, it's worth comparing that number to the health care expenditure levels of other Western countries while also comparing life expectancy and infant mortality rates. It's hard not to conclude that the U.S. pays a lot more to get a lot less.)

2) From Harper's Magazine, January 2009: (, I believe one needs a subscription to access the link)

  • Minimum number of detainees who were tortured to death in U.S. custody: 8
  • Minimum number of extraordinary renditions that the United States has made since 2006: 200
  • Percentage change since 2000 in U.S. emigration to Canada: +79
  • Percentage of Republicans in 2005 who said they would vote for Bush over George Washington: 62
  • Seconds it took a Maryland consultant in 2004 to pick a Diebold voting machine’s lock and remove its memory card: 10
  • Number of states John Kerry would have won in 2004 if votes by poor Americans were the only ones counted: 40
  • Number if votes by rich Americans were the only ones counted: 4
  • Portion of all U.S. income gains during the Bush Administration that have gone to the top 1 percent of earners: 3/4
  • Increase since 2000 in the number of Americans living at less than half the federal poverty level: 3,500,000
  • Percentage change since 2001 in the average amount U.S. workers spend on out-of-pocket medical expenses: +172
  • Estimated percentage by which Social Security benefits would have declined if Bush’s privatization plan had passed: –15
  • Years since a White House official as senior as I. Lewis Libby had been indicted while in office: 130
  • Ratio of the entire U.S. federal budget in 1957, adjusted for inflation, to the amount spent so far on the Iraq war: 1:1

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