(1) an answer of at least 100 words to at least one of the questions below
(2) a substantive response of at least 50 words. A substantive response is more than just saying you agree or disagree. Explain why.
(3) a substantive response of at least 50 words. A substantive response is more than just saying you agree or disagree. Explain why.

You do not need to respond to each of these questions. Pick three of them for your response. One response with at least 100 words and two others with at least 50 words

NOTE: at least mention one reference

Economists view the world differently than many people, including politicians and business leaders. Economists point out that if there are social costs that are not taken into consideration when making policy choices, we may make socially undesirable decisions. For example, have you ever thought "if I had known then what I know now, I would have made a different choice"?

For example, Americans overwhelmingly supported the U.S. war in Iraq when it began in 2001. Now, more than ten years later, many people question that decision. According to a report by the Congressional Research Service the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other operations since 2001 cost $1.283 trillion after ten years. That was almost one-tenth of the overall U.S. public debt. Was it worth it? If so, why have U.S. citizens been unwilling to pay for these added federal expenditures by paying higher taxes? (This is the first time in U.S. history the country has cut taxes in a time of war. Previously, citizens were willing to contribute financially to support the war effort.)

Additionally, the accounting costs of the wars discussed in the Congressional report measure only financial expenditures by the federal government that ultimately must be paid by taxpayers. Are there other costs to society that are not included in such a report? Do you know anyone who has served in the military? How have their lives been affected by these ongoing wars? Many families and friends have lost loved ones or had them return home injured or psychologically altered. Children have endured the absence or loss of a parent. Spouses have suffered from extended deployments. Does this take a toll on society that is not included in the financial report?

Should these costs be considered by our leaders and us when making public policy decisions? Might we reach different conclusions if we did?

In what other situations are there social costs in addition to monetary costs? For example, are you paying any costs for this course in addition to the monetary costs for tuition, books, and supplies? Does the time devoted to this course take any time away from your friends or family?

Remember, additional social costs do not always suggest you make a different choice. Economists just insist they should be considered.

Will there be costs associated with the hurricane on the East Coast other than the financial costs of repairing things broken by the high winds and floods? Was there any non-monetary damage done to people?

Can you provide any similar examples of social costs in addition to monetary costs?

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1. Several other costs to society not included in of war not included in the 2011 Congressional Research Service Report “The Cost of Iraq, Afghanistan, and Other Global War on Terror Operations Since 9/11” are outlined on the website A search of the Congressional Research Service Report (CRSR) on the word “death” turns up zero results, however at, human cost are outlined in terms of US and allied killed and wounded, as well as civilians killed and wounded. There are also health issues and refugees as a result of war. Under social and political costs, lists erosion of civil liberties (detention, torture, racial profiling, surveillance and data privacy), covering the wars (journalists’ deaths), growth of corporate power and profiteering (from military contracts), environmental costs (such as toxic dust from heavy military vehicles) and education within Iraq (the education system was virtually destroyed and in the US research was reallocated away from important social problems.) Under economic costs, many mirror the CRSR report, but also has a section called “what we haven’t counted”. There, a host of economic costs are listed without a dollar value attached. For example, they could not assess “changes in American ‘standing’ in the rest of the world since the wars began.”...
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