The Spectacle Blog

“Swamp” Logic

By on 7.1.08 | 3:26PM

Checking out Time's Swampland blog, I found the following:

President Bush today signed into law today the G.I. Bill, which will double college benefits for troops and veterans, despite his earlier threats to veto the measure. The bill was attached to the $850 billion war supplemental that allocates and additional $650 billion for the war in Iraq and $200 billion for Afghanistan.

This immediately struck me as odd. While I am under no illusion about the costs of Iraq and Afghanistan, $850 billion is an absolutely staggering figure for a supplemental bill -- one that would be much higher than the entire budget of the Department of Defense.

So I followed a link to the Tribune blog, coincidently named, the Swamp, and found a post headlined: "Bush signs $162 billion war spending bill." That seemed more like it, but then I read a few paragraphs in, and found this: "The bill adds more than $650 billion to the Iraq war and $200 billion for the war in Afghanistan."

How bizarre. I mean, what kind of $162 billion bill contains $850 billion in additional spending?

Finally, I checked out the AP story, and it all began to make sense:

The spending bill will bring to more than $650 billion the amount Congress has provided for the Iraq war since it started more than five years ago. For operations in Afghanistan, the total is nearly $200 billion, according to congressional officials.

The only logical conclusion to draw is that you shouldn't trust blogs with "swamp" in the title.

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