My newest Forbes column discusses the costs of war and the costs of Public Broadcasting. While I still think government shouldn’t fund media, the amount they spend on public broadcasting is very, very little relative to what they spend on war. According to this report from the Congressional Research Service, the Fiscal 2011 budget request for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan was $170.7 billion. The annual budget of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting is about $422 million. If all of the CPB’s money came from the Federal Government and if that allocation were reduced to $0, it would save enough money to pay for just over one day of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
This isn’t to say that the government should be funding public broadcasting. It does suggest that by focusing on funding for public broadcasting while overlooking what we’re spending on war, conservatives are stepping over $20 bills to pick up nickels.
Cross-posted in the comments on my Forbes article “Bombs Over Big Bird?“