So Iraq is going to cost us $87 billion. Well, if that's what it's gonna cost, we're stuck with it. We broke it, we bought it. We've had no luck getting the "Coalition of the Willing" to help us out, and asking the UN for help is just silly.
Now, how do we present this? The Government and the Press just hit us with the number, but it doesn't mean anything. The Democrats had this problem in 2000 and 2002. They'd say that Bush's tax cuts would go mostly to the top 1%, but nobody knew what they meant. So people making less than $40,000/year thought they were in that magic 1%. If anybody phrased it as "making over $300,000/year", I missed it.
So what's $87 billion? Wampum has a nice tabulation of what $87 billion is in terms of other Government programs:
In fact, the budgets of the departments of Energy ($19.8 billion), State ($11.0 billion), Interior ($10.4 billion) and Justice ($22.2 billion) combined ($63.4 billion) will probably come in less this year than operations in Iraq.
As Ev Dirkson put it, "Pretty soon you're talking real money".