“How much money have you made out of the war?” shrieked that protester at
Cheney last night while Arnold was speaking.
This is, as we math buffs say, a nontrivial question, but one that could be
addressed to a great many of us. How much money have **I** made from the
Iraq war? I have no clue, but I doubt the answer is “zero.” Like 50+
percent of the U.S. public, I have investments in the market (via a bundle
of mutual funds, in my case). Were my investments affected by the decision
to go to war in Iraq? I have no idea of the specifics; but since markets
*do* react to large events like that, my investments surely were affected in
some way, as likely upwards as downwards. It’s entirely possible that I
have “profited from the war.” You, too.
And then there is George Soros, who is widely rumored to have been selling
the dollar short in the run-up to the war, hoping for a fat profit if the
dollar dropped. If this is right, and Soros’s “view” was the correct one,
then Moveon.org and the rest of Soros’s political ventures are financed in
part from “war profiteering.” Is anyone protesting about this? My guess
would be: No.