A billion here, a billion there...

So, according to the New York Times, the federal government could spend $1 trillion dollars to clean up the Wall Street mess. That's trillion. With a T.

For comparison, here's what the entire Iraq War has cost as of this writing:


Courtesy of the National Priorities Project (http://www.nationalpriorities.org/costofwar_home))

That's $555 billion, a bit more than half of what the bailout will cost. Or, if you prefer, the bailout will cost a little less than twice what five years of war has cost us.

And it will be paid by you and me, and our children, and our children's children, and our children's children's children.

Get the picture?

And all because of greed…the greed of speculators, the greed of Wall Street executives who took out millions in stock options and bonuses while their firms went into the red, and the greed of ordinary men and women who bought into the fantasy that you could afford an $800,000 house on an income of $50,000 a year and almost no money down.

And let us not forget that we're bailing out the same industry that has been nickel-and-diming us to death with late fees, overdraft charges, and transfer fees, all while paying us half a percent on our savings accounts.

I don't know about you, but I'm ready to grab a pitchfork.