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View Diary: Obama's big science project; the Brain Initiative (50 comments)

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  •  Depends on how you're counting (0+ / 0-)

    NIH funding for 2013 was $29.15 billion, about $2.43 billion per month. Funding for 2014 will not be substantially more (best case, about $31 billion).

    In the 141.5 months since the Afghan war started, we have spent something north of $644 billion, or an average of about $4.5 billion per month taken across the entire length of the war (because the war was so halfhearted pursued after the Iraq distraction, that average is considerably lower than the current monthly cost, I believe). However, any monthly figure for war costs is misleading. First, it will not count the large predictable future costs currently being incurred, which extend for decades after the war's official end. We will be paying for medical costs and veteran's services into the foreseeable future. Second, it does not count the opportunity cost, the cost to society of putting so many resources into a project that will not give ROI remotely comparable to other possible investments. NIH funding does not incur similar future costs and the potential gains are much greater.

    I don't believe you will find a majority of the people on this site who would agree that the NIH should get less in funding solely because it is expensive. This is a site dedicated to the promotion of the Democratic Party, and Democrats have believed for decades that a big country has big needs that cannot adequately be addressed with small government.

    My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right.
    --Carl Schurz, remarks in the Senate, February 29, 1872

    by leftist vegetarian patriot on Mon Jul 22, 2013 at 12:34:03 PM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  Why minimize current expenditure? (0+ / 0-)
      n the 141.5 months since the Afghan war started, we have spent something north of $644 billion, or an average of about $4.5 billion per month taken across the entire length of the war
      which are much higher than the time averaged average over the past 12 years or so?

      what is your agenda, exactly??

      •  I'm not minimizing (0+ / 0-)

        I don't KNOW current expenditures, even roughly. I can easily find total costs. Current costs are harder. I found last year's budget for the war here. With the drawdown, I don't know how closely that tracks the current year's budget. However, given that the number I used (average over time) was less than the (unstated but implied) number you claimed was the current average and is therefore actually more congenial to your argument that the NIH is overfunded (an argument I reject), you are going to have to radically switch perspectives if you wish to go after me on methodology.

        My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right.
        --Carl Schurz, remarks in the Senate, February 29, 1872

        by leftist vegetarian patriot on Mon Jul 22, 2013 at 12:45:37 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  According to this PDF (0+ / 0-)

      linked here

      the "on the books" figures are

      FY2012: $105.5 billion
      FY2013: $85.6 billion

      which works out to about twice what you are claiming.

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