Someone who can do simple math might want to check the following figures, but with that caveat…
The population of Iran is about 68 million. (Only a third of which are certifiably insane.)
Their per capita GDP is listed as $7,700. Their oil minister recently boasted that this figure would rise to 10 g’s a head. Let’s pretend he’s an honest politician, and that’s the truth. 68 million people, 10 grand a head, that comes to about 680 billion bucks per year in nice round numbers.
The gross municipal product of New York City is 500 billion. God knows what the property value is. But a nuke in NYC would cost us, let’s say, two trillion dollars without batting an eye. (Four trillion if it’s Trump generating the stats.)
Now, in the worst case scenario the Iranian government builds a nuke, hands it to Osama, and there goes New York City. A minimum two trillion dollar cost, not to mention the lives. With me so far?
Here’s my plan: let’s offer every man, woman and child in Iran a year’s income — $10,000 a head — to take care of the nuke-o-philiac beardmasters who run the country. A year’s income, tax free, and all they have to do is make sure that the government of Iran loses interest in building nukes. How the Iranian people bring about this change of heart in their leadership is up to them. But if they want to borrow some guns, we could probably make that happen.
680 billion for the 68 million Iranians, against the minimum hit of two trillion if something happens to NYC.
And here’s the beauty part: we can tap the allies for at least a third of that. Our hit would be no more than 450 billion. For half a trillion we take down the Mad Mullahs, lose not a single American life, ensure the safety of trillions of dollars worth of property and tens of thousands of American lives, and dazzle the world with our brilliance.
(Cross-posted from The Mighty Middle.)