Harper’s Index January 2009: A Retrospective of the bush Era

I love Harper’s Magazine and desperately need to start subscribing again. Regardless, the January 2009 issue – The $10 Trillion Hangover – had a special 3 page Harper’s Index sending bush on his way out of office.

http://www.harpers.org/archive/2009/01/0082319

Highlights/Lowlights of the Index:

Amount for which which George Bush successfully sued Enterprise Rent-A-Car in 1999: $2,500

Total amount the Bush campaign paid Enron and Halliburton for use of corporate jets during the 2000 recount: $15,400

Days since the federal government first placed the nation under an “elevated terror alert” that the level has been relaxed: 0

Number of box cutters taken from U.S. airline passengers since January 2002: 105,075

Minimum number of laws that Bush signing statements have exempted his administration from following: 1,069

Date on which Bush said of Osama bin Laden, “I truly am not that concerned about him”: 3/13/02

Portion of his presidency he has spent at or en route to vacation spots: 1/3

Estimated number of juveniles whom the United States has detained as enemy combatants since 2002: 2,500

Minimum number of detainees who were tortured to death in U.S. custody: 8

Percentage change since 2000 in U.S. emigration to Canada: +79

Number of the thirty-eight Iraq war veterans who have run for Congress who were Democrats: 21

Number of states John Kerry would have won in 2004 if votes by poor Americans were the only ones counted: 40

Number if votes by rich Americans were the only ones counted: 4

Portion of all U.S. income gains during the Bush Administration that have gone to the top 1 percent of earners: 3/4

Increase since 2000 in the number of Americans living at less than half the federal poverty level: 3,500,000

Percentage change since 2002 in the number of U.S. teens using illegal drugs: –9

Percentage change in the number of adults in their fifties doing so: +121

Estimated percentage by which Social Security benefits would have declined if Bush’s privatization plan had passed: –15

Percentage change since 2001 in U.S. government spending on paper shredding: +466

Days after Hurricane Katrina hit that Cheney’s office ordered an electric company to restore power to two oil pipelines: 1

Days after the hurricane that the White House authorized sending federal troops into New Orleans: 4

Months, beginning in 2001, that the federal government’s online condom fact sheet disappeared from its website : 17

Minimum amount that religious groups received in congressional earmarks from 2003 to 2006: $209,000,000

Amount such groups received during the previous fourteen years: $107,000,000

Estimated amount Bush-era policies will cost the U.S. in new debt and accrued obligations: $10,350,000,000,000

Percentage change in U.S. discretionary spending during Bush’s presidency: +31

Percentage change during Reagan’s and Clinton’s, respectively: +16, +0.3

Total value of U.S. government contracts in 2000 that were awarded without competitive bidding: $73,000,000,000

Total in 2007: $146,000,000,000

Rank of Bush among U.S. presidents with the highest disapproval rating: 1

Average percentage of Americans who approved of the job Bush was doing during his second term: 37

Percentage of Russians today who approve of the direction their country took under Stalin: 37

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