Bush by numbers: Four years of double standards
By Graydon Carter
03 September 2004
1 Number of Bush administration public statements on National security issued
between 20 January 2001 and 10 September 2001 that mentioned al-Qa’ida.
104 Number of Bush administration public statements on National security and
defence in the same period that mentioned Iraq or Saddam Hussein.
101 Number of Bush administration public statements on National security and
defence in the same period that mentioned missile defence.
65 Number of Bush administration public statements on National security and
defence in the same period that mentioned weapons of mass destruction.
0 Number of times Bush mentioned Osama bin Laden in his three State of the
73 Number of times that Bush mentioned terrorism or terrorists in his three
State of the Union addresses.
83 Number of times Bush mentioned Saddam, Iraq, or regime (as in change) in his
three State of the Union addresses.
$1m Estimated value of a painting the Bush Presidential Library in College
Station, Texas, received from Prince Bandar, Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to the
United States and Bush family friend.
0 Number of times Bush mentioned Saudi Arabia in his three State of the Union
1,700 Percentage increase between 2001 and 2002 of Saudi Arabian spending on
public relations in the United States.
79 Percentage of the 11 September hijackers who came from Saudi Arabia.
3 Number of 11 September hijackers whose entry visas came through special
US-Saudi “Visa Express” programme.
140 Number of Saudis, including members of the Bin Laden family, evacuated from
United States almost immediately after 11 September.
14 Number of Immigration and Naturalisation Service (INS) agents assigned to
track down 1,200 known illegal immigrants in the United States from countries
where al-Qa’ida is active.
$3m Amount the White House was willing to grant the 9/11 Commission to
investigate the 11 September attacks.
$0 Amount approved by George Bush to hire more INS special agents.
$10m Amount Bush cut from the INS’s existing terrorism budget.
$50m Amount granted to the commission that looked into the Columbia space
$5m Amount a 1996 federal commission was given to study legalised gambling.
7 Number of Arabic linguists fired by the US army between mid-August and
mid-October 2002 for being gay.
George Bush: Military man
1972 Year that Bush walked away from his pilot duties in the Texas National
Guard, Nearly two years before his six-year obligation was up.
$3,500 Reward a group of veterans offered in 2000 for anyone who could confirm
Bush’s Alabama guard service.
600-700 Number of guardsmen who were in Bush’s unit during that period.
0 Number of guardsmen from that period who came forward with information about
Bush’s guard service.
0 Number of minutes that President Bush, Vice-President Dick Cheney, the
Defence Secretary, Donald Rumsfeld, the assistant Defence Secretary, Paul Wolfowitz,
the former chairman of the Defence Policy Board, Richard Perle, and the White
House Chief of Staff, Karl Rove – the main proponents of the war in Iraq -served
in combat (combined).
0 Number of principal civilian or Pentagon staff members who planned the war
who have immediate family members serving in uniform in Iraq.
8 Number of members of the US Senate and House of Representatives who have a
child serving in the military.
10 Number of days that the Pentagon spent investigating a soldier who had
called the President “a joke” in a letter to the editor of a Newspaper.
46 Percentage increase in sales between 2001 and 2002 of GI Joe figures
2 Number of Nations that George Bush has attacked and taken over since coming
130 Approximate Number of countries (out of a total of 191 recognised by the
United Nations) with a US military presence.
43 Percentage of the entire world’s military spending that the US spends on
defence. (That was in 2002, the year before the invasion of Iraq.)
$401.3bn Proposed military budget for 2004.
Saviour of Iraq
1983 The year in which Donald Rumsfeld, Ronald Reagan’s special envoy to the
Middle East, gave Saddam Hussein a pair of golden spurs as a gift.
2.5 Number of hours after Rumsfeld learnt that Osama bin Laden was a suspect in
the 11 September attacks that he brought up reasons to “hit” Iraq.
237 Minimum number of misleading statements on Iraq made by top Bush
administration officials between 2002 and January 2004, according to the California
Representative Henry Waxman.
10m Estimated number of people worldwide who took to the streets on 21 February
2003, in opposition to the invasion of Iraq, the largest simultaneous protest
in world history.
$2bn Estimated monthly cost of US military presence in Iraq projected by the
White House in April 2003.
$4bn Actual monthly cost of the US military presence in Iraq according to
Secretary of Defence Rumsfeld in 2004.
$15m Amount of a contract awarded to an American firm to build a cement factory
$80,000 Amount an Iraqi firm spent (using Saddam’s confiscated funds) to build
the same factory, after delays prevented the American firm from starting it.
2000 Year that Cheney said his policy as CEO of Halliburton oil services
company was “we wouldn’t do anything in Iraq”.
$4.7bn Total value of contracts awarded to Halliburton in Iraq and Afghanistan.
$680m Estimated value of Iraq reconstruction contracts awarded to Bechtel.
$2.8bnValue of Bechtel Corp contracts in Iraq.
$120bn Amount the war and its aftermath are projected to cost for the 2004
35 Number of countries to which the United States suspended military assistance
after they failed to sign agreements giving Americans immunity from prosecution
before the International Criminal Court.
92 Percentage of Iraq’s urban areas with access to potable water in late 2002.
60 Percentage of Iraq’s urban areas with access to potable water in late 2003.
55 Percentage of the Iraqi workforce who were unemployed before the war.
80 Percentage of the Iraqi workforce who are unemployed a Year after the war.
0 Number of American combat deaths in Germany after the Nazi surrender in May
37 Death toll of US soldiers in Iraq in May 2003, the month combat operations
0 Number of coffins of dead soldiers returning home that the Bush
administration has permitted to be photographed.
0 Number of memorial services for the returned dead that Bush has attended
since the beginning of the war.
A soldier’s best friend
40,000 Number of soldiers in Iraq seven months after start of the war still
without Interceptor vests, designed to stop a round from an AK-47.
$60m Estimated cost of outfitting those 40,000 soldiers with Interceptor vests.
62 Percentage of gas masks that army investigators discovered did Not work
properly in autumn 2002.
90 Percentage of detectors which give early warning of a biological weapons
attack found to be defective.
87 Percentage of Humvees in Iraq not equipped with armour capable of stopping
AK-47 rounds and protecting against roadside bombs and landmines at the end of
Making the country safer
$3.29 Average amount allocated per person Nationwide in the first round of
homeland security grants.
$94.40 Amount allocated per person for homeland security in American Samoa.
$36 Amount allocated per person for homeland security in Wyoming,
Vice-President Cheney’s home state.
$17 Amount allocated per person in New York state.
$5.87 Amount allocated per person in New York City.
$77.92 Amount allocated per person in New Haven, Connecticut, home of Yale
University, Bush’s alma mater.
76 Percentage of 215 cities surveyed by the US Conference of Mayors in early
2004 that had yet to receive a dime in federal homeland security assistance for
their first-response units.
5 Number of major US airports at the beginning of 2004 that the Transportation
Security Administration admitted were Not fully screening baggage
22,600 Number of planes carrying unscreened cargo that fly into New York each
5 Estimated Percentage of US air cargo that is screened, including cargo
transported on passenger planes.
95 Percentage of foreign goods that arrive in the United States by sea.
2 Percentage of those goods subjected to thorough inspection.
$5.5bnEstimated cost to secure fully US ports over the Next decade.
$0 Amount Bush allocated for port security in 2003.
$46m Amount the Bush administration has budgeted for port security in 2005.
15,000 Number of major chemical facilities in the United States.
100 Number of US chemical plants where a terrorist act could endanger the lives
of more than one million people.
0 Number of new drugs or vaccines against “priority pathogens” listed by the
Centres for Disease Control that have been developed and introduced since 11
Giving a hand up to the advantaged
$10.9m Average wealth of the members of Bush’s original 16-person cabinet.
75 Percentage of Americans unaffected by Bush’s sweeping 2003 cuts in capital
gains and dividends taxes.
$42,000 Average savings members of Bush’s cabinet received in 2003 as a result
of cuts in capital gains and dividends taxes.
10 Number of fellow members from the Yale secret society Skull and Bones that
Bush has named to important positions (including the Associate Attorney General
Robert McCallum Jr. and SEC chief Bill Donaldson).
79 Number of Bush’s initial 189 appointees who also served in his father’s
A man with a lot of friends
$113m Amount of total hard money the Bush-Cheney 2000 campaign received, a
$11.5m Amount of hard money raised through the Pioneer programme, the
controversial fund-raising process created for the Bush-Cheney 2000 campaign.
(Participants pledged to raise at least $100,000 by bundling together cheques of up to
$1,000 from friends and family. Pioneers were assigned numbers, which were
included on all cheques, enabling the campaign to keep track of who raised how much.)
George Bush: Money manager
4.7m Number of bankruptcies that were declared during Bush’s first three years
2002 The worst year for major markets since the recession of the 1970s.
$489bn The US trade deficit in 2003, the worst in history for a single year.
$5.6tr Projected national surplus forecast by the end of the decade when Bush
took office in 2001.
$7.22tr US national debt by mid-2004.
George Bush: Tax cutter
87 Percentage of American families in April 2004 who say they have felt no
benefit from Bush’s tax cuts.
39 Percentage of tax cuts that will go to the top 1 per cent of American
families when fully phased in.
49 Percentage of Americans in April 2004 who found that their taxes had
actually gone up since Bush took office.
88 Percentage of American families who will save less than $100 on their 2006
federal taxes as a result of 2003 cut in capital gains and dividends taxes.
$30,858 Amount Bush himself saved in taxes in 2003.
9.3m Number of US unemployed in April 2004.
2.3m Number of Americans who lost their jobs during first three Years of the
22m Number of jobs gained during Clinton’s eight years in office.
Friend of the poor
34.6m Number of Americans living below the poverty line (1 in 8 of the
6.8m Number of people in the workforce but still classified as poor.
35m Number of Americans that the government defines as “food insecure,” in
other words, hungry.
$300m Amount cut from the federal programme that provides subsidies to poor
families so they can heat their homes.
40 Percentage of wealth in the United States held by the richest 1 per cent of
18 Percentage of wealth in Britain held by the richest 1e per cent of the
George Bush And his special friend
$60bn Loss to Enron stockholders, following the largest bankruptcy in US
$205m Amount Enron CEO Kenneth Lay earned from stock option profits over a
$101m Amount Lay made from selling his Enron shares just before the company
$59,339 Amount the Bush campaign reimbursed Enron for 14 trips on its corporate
jet during the 2000 campaign.
30 Length of time in months between Enron’s collapse and Lay (whom the
President called “Kenny Boy”) still not being charged with a crime.
George Bush: Lawman
15 Average number of minutes Bush spent reviewing capital punishment cases
while governor of Texas.
46 Percentage of Republican federal judges when Bush came to office.
57 Percentage of Republican federal judges after three years of the Bush
33 Percentage of the $15bn Bush pledged to fight Aids in Africa that must go to
The Civil libertarian
680 Number of suspected al-Qa’ida members that the United States admits are
detained at Guant�namo Bay, Cuba.
42 Number of nationalities of those detainees at Guantanamo.
22 Number of hours prisoners were handcuffed, shackled, and made to wear
surgical masks, earmuffs, and blindfolds during their flight to Guantanamo.
32 Number of confirmed suicide attempts by Guantanamo Bay prisoners.
24 Number of prisoners in mid-2003 being monitored by psychiatrists in
Guantanamo’s new mental ward.
A health-conscious president
43.6m Number of Americans without health insurance by the end of 2002 (more
than 15 per cent of the population).
2.4m Number of Americans who lost their health insurance during Bush’s first
year in office.
$44m Amount the Bush-Cheney 2000 campaign and the Republican National Committee
received in contributions from the fossil fuel, chemical, timber, and mining
200 Number of regulation rollbacks downgrading or weakening environmental laws
in Bush’s first three years in office.
31 Number of Bush administration appointees who are alumni of the energy
industry (includes four cabinet secretaries, the six most powerful White House
officials, and more than 20 other high-level appointees).
50 Approximate number of policy changes and regulation rollbacks injurious to
the environment that have been announced by the Bush administration on Fridays
after 5pm, a time that makes it all but impossible for news organisations to
relay the information to the widest possible audience.
50 Percentage decline in Environmental Protection Agency enforcement actions
against polluters under Bush’s watch.
34 Percentage decline in criminal penalties for environmental crimes since Bush
50 Percentage decline in civil penalties for environmental crimes since Bush
$6.1m Amount the EPA historically valued each human life when conducting
economic analyses of proposed regulations.
$3.7m Amount the EPA valued each human life when conducting analyses of
proposed regulations during the Bush administration.
0 Number of times Bush mentioned global warming, clean air, clean water,
pollution or environment in his 2004 State of the Union speech. His father was the
last president to go through an entire State of the Union address without
mentioning the environment.
1 Number of paragraphs devoted to global warming in the EPA’s 600-page “Draft
Report on the Environment” presented in 2003.
68 Number of days after taking office that Bush decided Not to ratify the Kyoto
Protocol, the international treaty to reduce greenhouse gases by roughly 5.2
per cent below 1990 levels by 2012. The United States was to cut its level by 7
1 The rank of the United States worldwide in terms of greenhouse gas emissions.
25 Percentage of overall worldwide carbon dioxide emissions the United States
is responsible for.
53 Number of days after taking office that Bush reneged on his campaign promise
to regulate carbon dioxide emissions from power plants.
14 Percentage carbon dioxide emissions will increase over the next 10 years
under Bush’s own global-warming plan (an increase of 30 per cent above their 1990
408 Number of species that could be extinct by 2050 if the global-warming trend
5 Number of years the Bush administration said in 2003 that global warming must
be further studied before substantive action could be taken.
62 Number of members of Cheney’s 63-person Energy Task Force with ties to
corporate energy interests.
0 Number of environmentalists asked to attend Cheney’s Energy Task Force
6 Number of months before 11 September that Cheney’s Energy Task Force
investigated Iraq’s oil reserves.
2 Percentage of the world’s population that is British.
2 Percentage of the world’s oil used by Britain.
5 Percentage of the world’s population that is American.
25 Percentage of the world’s oil used by America.
63 Percentage of oil the United States imported in 2003, a record high.
24,000 Estimated number of premature deaths that will occur under Bush’s Clear
300 Number of Clean Water Act violations by the mountaintop-mining industry in
750,000 Tons of toxic waste the US military, the world’s biggest polluter,
generates around the world each Year.
$3.8bn Amount in the Superfund trust fund for toxic site clean-ups in 1995, the
Year “polluter pays” fees expired.
$0m Amount of uncommitted dollars in the Superfund trust fund for toxic site
clean-ups in 2003.
270 Estimated number of court decisions citing federal Negligence in
endangered-species protection that remained unheeded during the first year of the Bush
100 Percentage of those decisions that Bush then decided to allow the
government to ignore indefinitely.
68.4 Average Number of species added to the Endangered and Threatened Species
list each year between 1991 and 2000.
0 Number of endangered species voluntarily added by the Bush administration
since taking office.
50 Percentage of screened workers at Ground Zero who now suffer from long-term
health problems, almost half of whom don’t have health insurance.
78 Percentage of workers at Ground Zero who now suffer from lung ailments.
88 Percentage of workers at Ground Zero who Now suffer from ear, nose, or
22 Asbestos levels at Ground Zero were 22 times higher than the levels in
Libby, Montana, where the W R Grace mine produced one of the worst Superfund
disasters in US history.
Image booster for the US
2,500 Number of public-diplomacy officers employed by the State Department to
further the image of the US abroad in 1991.
1,200 Number of public-diplomacy officers employed by the State Department to
further US image abroad in 2004.
4 Rank of the United States among countries considered to be the greatest
threats to world peace according to a 2003 Pew Global Attitudes study (Israel, Iran,
and North Korea were considered more dangerous; Iraq was considered less
$66bn Amount the United States spent on international aid and diplomacy in
$23.8bn Amount the United States spent on international aid and diplomacy in
85 Percentage of Indonesians who had an unfavourable image of the United States
90 Percentage of Americans who approved of the way Bush was handling his job as
president on 26 September 2001.
67 Percentage of Americans who approved of the way Bush was handling his job as
president on 26 September 2002.
54 Percentage of Americans who approved of the way Bush was handling his job as
president on 30 September, 2003.
50 Percentage of Americans who approved of the way Bush was handling his job as
president on 15 October 2003.
49 Percentage of Americans who approved of the way Bush was handling his job as
president in May 2004.
More like the French than he would care to admit
28 Number of vacation days Bush took in August 2003, the second-longest
vacation of any president in US history. (Record holder Richard Nixon.)
13 Number of vacation days the average American receives each Year.
28 Number of vacation days Bush took in August 2001, the month he received a 6
August Presidential Daily Briefing headed “Osama bin Laden Determined to Strike
500 Number of days Bush has spent all or part of his time away from the White
House at his ranch in Crawford, Texas, his parents’ retreat in Kennebunkport,
Maine, or Camp David as of 1 April 2004.
No fool when it comes to the press
11 Number of press conferences during his first three Years in office in which
Bush referred to questions as being “trick” ones.
Factors in his favour
3 Number of companies that control the US voting technology market.
52 Percentage of votes cast during the 2002 midterm elections that were
recorded by Election Systems & Software, the largest voting-technology firm, a big
29 Percentage of votes that will be cast via computer voting machines that
don’t produce a paper record.
17On 17 November 2001, The Economist printed a correction for having said
George Bush was properly elected in 2000.
$113m Amount raised by the Bush-Cheney 2000 campaign, the most in American
$185m Amount raised by the Bush-Cheney 2004 re-election campaign, to the end of
$200m Amount that the Bush-Cheney 2004 campaign expects to raise by November
268 Number of Bush-Cheney fund-raisers who had earned Pioneer status (by
raising $100,000 each) as of March 2004.
187 Number of Bush-Cheney fund-raisers who had earned Ranger status (by raising
$200,000 each) as of March 2004.
$64.2mThe Amount Pioneers and Rangers had raised for Bush-Cheney as of March
85 Percentage of Americans who can’t Name the Chief Justice of the United
69 Percentage of Americans who believed the White House’s claims in September
2003 that Saddam Hussein was personally involved in the 11 September attacks.
34 Percentage of Americans who believed in June 2003 that Saddam’s “weapons of
mass destruction” had been found.
22 Percentage of Americans who believed in May 2003 that Saddam had used his
WMDs on US forces.
85 Percentage of American young adults who cannot find Afghanistan, Iraq, or
Israel on a map.
30 Percentage of American young adults who cannot find the Pacific Ocean on a
75 Percentage of American young adults who don’t know the population of the
53 Percentage of Canadian young adults who don’t know the population of the
11 Percentage of American young adults who cannot find the United States on a
30 Percentage of Americans who believe that “politics and government are too
complicated to understand.”
Another factor in his favour
70m Estimated number of Americans who describe themselves as Evangelicals who
accept Jesus Christ as their personal saviour and who interpret the Bible as the
direct word of God.
23m Number of Evangelicals who voted for Bush in 2000.
50m Number of voters in total who voted for Bush in 2000.
46 Percentage of voters who describe themselves as born-again Christians.
5 Number of states that do not use the word “evolution” in public school
This is an edited extract from “What We’ve Lost”, by Graydon Carter, published
by Little Brown on 9 September
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
For a former college drop-out from Ontario and, briefly, a lineman stringing up
telegraph wires on the railways of Canada, Graydon Carter, 55, has risen to
impressive heights. The editor of Vanity Fair since 1992 – after succeeding Tina
Brown – he is one of America’s celebrity editors with clout, glamour and a nice
line in suits.
It is hard to imagine Carter doing physical work of any kind, beyond exercising
his thumb on his silver Zippo lighter. His labour is restricted to rejigging
headlines in his magazine – he is a self-confessed failure at delegation of
duties – and swanning to Manhattan parties. Martini in hand, he cuts an almost
princely and dandyish figure, with billowing shirts and similarly billowing silver
The spotlight on his activities has never burned brighter. In recent months he
has transformed the regular editor’s letter at the front of the magazine into
less of a chat about its coming contents – the spreads of Annie Leibowitz and
rants of Christopher Hitchens – and more a full-bore diatribe against the world
of George Bush.