Thursday, 1 December 2011

What exactly are we paying for? And How much?

It is very difficult to find out how many Tomahwk cruise missiles were deployed by the UK in the latest Action against Colonel Gaddafi forces.

We know it was at leasts12 and probably more. at a cost of about £500,000 per missile, were used this amounts to a minimum of £6 Million before we bring the cost of deployment .

Even the simple presence of the submarines and aircraft that launched them cost a fortune  .Figures released by the Government in response to questions in Parliament show that it costs £35,000 to keep a Tornado GR4 in the air for an hour and £70,000 for a Typhoon, taking into account the cost of fuel, staffing and maintenance.

By sheer coincidence just before I started this post I happened to look at Left foot forward and Kate Hudson's on how rhe Con/Libdem bypassing parliament and admitted that it has committed a further £2 billion to replacing Trident.

My reason for this number crunching is not however to comment on the rights or wrong of this expenditure but to try and show how it relates to the Welsh Budget.

This is not a case of "Comparing Apples with Oranges" but an attempt to show that how little a million pounds  is these days .

Clearly the £20 Million pound diverted to Education due to the agreement between Labour and the Libdems  looks a very small amount when we consider what the cost of just one days action in the Libyan conflict could have been  and the  £216Million   capital budget for building work will get an additional s a result of Chancellor George Osborne's Autumn Statement.  pales when we look at the cost of renewing Trident..

The recent Talbot Green bypass which came in on Budget cos £90 million for 4.6 miles . So working on this the money would be gone if we built  just over ten miles of major roads.

Even £14.5bn budget looks less a samll amount  in the final analysis and anyway and what do we need by a billion?
Acording to the Oxford Dictionary
In British English, a billion used to be equivalent to a million million (i.e. 1,000,000,000,000), while in American English it has always equated to a thousand million (i.e. 1,000,000,000). British English has now adopted the American figure, though, so that a billion equals a thousand million in both varieties of English.
But this is not always the case. and confusion looms large try reading this if you what to set your head spinning and it does seem that the powers that be can be selective when they use it.

 Is not time to stop make it absolutely clear when we using this term? Or perhaps do away with it altogether and refer to a Million Million or Thousand million  so poor confused persons like myself have a clearer idea what we are talking about.

Perhaps what we need is a standard unit which we can compare expenditure say a the cost of building Comprehensive School to accommodate  1500 pupils called the Compo.

Any Ideas of a more Comprehensive (Sorry about that) standard unit.

1 comment:

  1. Does it matter whether its a thousand million or a million million? It's only a matter of zeros and central banks create money in the trillions now at the push of a button. We now have Quantitive Easing on a world scale (see the news yesterday on central banks jumping in the Euro debacle?) but nothing has changed fundamentally. Not even the bonuses. It will end in tears.