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PARIS, THE NEW NORMAL? — Diana Johnstone files an in-depth report from Paris on the political reaction to the Charlie Hebdo shootings; The Treachery of the Black Political Class: Margaret Kimberley charts the rise and fall of the Congressional Black Caucus; The New Great Game: Pepe Escobar assays the game-changing new alliance between Russia and Turkey; Will the Frackers Go Bust? Joshua Frank reports on how the collapse of global oil prices might spell the end of the fracking frenzy in the Bakken Shale; The Future of the Giraffe: Ecologist Monica Bond reports from Tanzania on the frantic efforts to save one of the world’s most iconic species. Plus: Jeffrey St. Clair on Satire in the Service of Power; Chris Floyd on the Age of Terrorism and Absurdity; Mike Whitney on the Drop Dead Fed; John Wight on the rampant racism of Clint Eastwood’s “American Sniper;” John Walsh on Hillary Clinton and Lee Ballinger on the Gift of Anger.
Us, Stingy?

It’s All Relative

by DAVE LINDORFF

Cost of one F-22 Raptor tactical fighter jet — $225 million

Cost of the ongoing U.S. war in Iraq–$228 million/day

Amount spent by Kerry and Bush campaigns — $400 million

U.S. aid to Yushenko camp in recent Ukrainian conflict — $30+ million

Estimated cost of Bush’s Second Inauguration and Ball — $ 40+ million

Amount of U.S. tax cuts under Bush — $1 trillion

Cost of the U.S. Iraq War in 2004 — $147 billion

U.S. reconstruction aid budgeted for Iraq (though never spent!) — $18 billion

Amount the U.S. initially in aid to Indian Ocean tsunami victims — $ 10 million

Amount U.S. offered in tsunami aid after being chastised by UN official — $35 million

DAVE LINDORFF is the author of Killing Time: an Investigation into the Death Row Case of Mumia Abu-Jamal. His new book of CounterPunch columns titled "This Can’t be Happening!" to be published this fall by Common Courage Press. Information about both books and other work by Lindorff can be found at www.thiscantbehappening.net.

He can be reached at: dlindorff@yahoo.com