Cover

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Frontmatter

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CONTENTS

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PREFACE

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pp. vii-ix

Although it focuses on the American economy in wartime, this is not an economics book. As a political scientist and interdisciplinary scholar of war, I see the economy as just one of various arenas in which the effects of war play out. In this book, I trace the costs and economic effects of the War on Terror, broadly...

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INTRODUCTION

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pp. 1-8

The first ambulance that arrived at Overlake Hospital Medical Center in Bellevue, Washington, carried a young woman named Vivian Chamberlain, screaming in pain and bleeding from her punctured eardrums. When handheld radiation detectors went wild, she was stripped of her outer clothing, brushed...

PART I. GOVERNMENT SPENDING

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1 WHAT DOES WAR COST?

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pp. 11-22

Imagine the costs of war as a series of boxes nested inside each other (Box 1). The innermost box is U.S. costs in Iraq, which received growing public attention in 2003 as postwar security and reconstruction costs mounted. But Iraq is just, as President Bush says, a “battle.” It is contained in a much larger box, the...

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2 TAXES

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pp. 23-37

Line 54 on your 2003 federal income tax Form 1040 does not even have a name. Officially it is called “Subtract line 53 from line 43. If line 53 is more than line 43, enter -0-.” But line 54 is important. It is your total income tax bill for the year. (If you use Form 1040EZ, it’s line 10; on Form 1040A, it’s line 38.) The...

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3 BUDGET CUTS

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pp. 38-56

The second main way we are funding war, in addition to tax revenues, is debt. But before turning to that topic, which leads on to inflation and wider effects on society, let’s consider a third source—cutting other programs in the federal, state, and...

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4 DEBT

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pp. 57-72

...certainly use the money. Expenses are up in recent years. Her household’s share of war-related spending is up $150 a month since 9/11 (on top of $350 a month), just as Jane’s monthly bill for home security would go up if she leased a fancy alarm system after being burglarized. Jane’s family health bills are up...

PART II. BROADER ECONOMIC EFFECTS

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5. INFLATION

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pp. 75-87

In addition to government war spending, budget cuts, and debt, other hidden costs of war take their toll. Wartime conditions disrupt economic growth and affect financial markets, commodity prices, investment patterns, and unemployment in complex ways that are more negative than positive overall....

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6. BUSINESS UNDER STRESS

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pp. 88-106

A kind of shock wave moves through the economy from war fighting. It brings disruption and recession as it goes, and usually ends in inflation several years later. (Similar waves of disruption affect social and cultural life in wartime.) If you have the idea that war’s indirect economic effects are good for the...

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7. PROFIT AND LOSS IN WARTIME

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pp. 107-124

Although war is a net economic loss, not everyone wins and loses equally. Some people benefit economically from wars while others—the majority—suffer economic losses. And some of the latter suffer bigger losses than others. Whole sectors of the economy can prosper or wither as a result of...

PART THREE. FUTURE COSTS AND HOW WE DIVIDE THEM

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8. THE PRICE OF FAILURE

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pp. 127-146

The bomb that destroys Chicago would likely arrive not on a missile but in a sport-utility vehicle (SUV). In one minute, one hundred thousand human beings who had been working downtown on an ordinary day either would be dead—the lucky ones—or would have received fatal doses of radiation...

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9. A WAR WITHOUT SACRIFICE?

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pp. 147-161

If you have a rug in your living room, it makes a great place to sweep the dust under if company is at the door and you’re not finished cleaning. But suppose you tried to hide an elephant under there? That strategy pretty well sums up what President Bush has tried to do with the costs of the War on Terror. According...

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10. SHARING THE BURDEN

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pp. 162-177

Coming out of denial and coming to terms with the costs of war will mean closing a gap in the Bush administration between words and deeds—between George W. Bush’s promise to do “everything in our power” to win the War on Terror and Donald Rumsfeld’s “Gosh, when it comes to money, I’ll take it...

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11. PAY TO WIN

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pp. 178-202

How will we know when the War on Terror is over? Defense Secretary Rumsfeld was asked that question at a briefing in March 2002. First he said, “I suppose that will be something that the President would make a judgment on, as to when it was over.” Then he added, “I think that the way I would characterize...

NOTES

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pp. 203-220

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ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

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pp. 221-222

For her patient guidance, I thank my literary agent, Fredrica S. Friedman. For bringing the book to fruition, I thank my editor at NYU Press, Eric Zinner. This book benefited from seminars at the Program on International Politics, Economics, and Security...

INDEX

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pp. 223-228

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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pp. 229-240

Professor Joshua S. Goldstein, a leading expert on war and an interdisciplinary social scientist, is an associate of the Watson Institute for International Studies at Brown University. His books include War and Gender: How Gender Shapes the War...