How We Could Have Spent the $24 Billion the Government Shutdown Cost Us

How We Could Have Spent the $24 Billion the Government Shutdown Cost Us

Standard and Poor’s estimates that the GOP’s shutdown “temper tantrum,” as Nancy Pelosi called it, cost the American people upwards of $24 billion.

Here is the shutdown broken down:

18 – The number of GOP senators who voted against the deal, and thus, voted for America defaulting and plugging world economic markets into chaos. How thoughtful.

144 – The number of GOP house members who did the same.

16 – How many days the shutdown lasted.

3 – The percentage rise in alcohol sales tax revenue in Washington, D.C. during the shutdown. Bartenders called it getting “fur-loaded.”

13,000 – Fewer hotel room bookings in Washington, as compared to last year, costing the city hundreds of thousands in lost revenue.

.5 – Half a point rise in the unemployment rate during the shutdown, which translates roughly into 900,000 jobs.

49 – 49% of Americans have an unfavorable opinion of the Tea Party, while just 30% of Americans view it favorably, a new low.

To help us all understand the true cost of the shutdown, and exactly what $24 billion looks like, I’ve come up with some helpful comparisons:

3,664,972 – Gallons of Gun Oil Personal Lubricant, which should help the GOP take this loss, and their impending electoral defeats, a bit better.

2,930,402,930 – Packs of Camel Ultra Lights, Speaker Boehner’s smoke of choice.


120,603,015 – Sessions of full-body spray-on tan, at $199 a session, available at one of D.C.’s spray-on studios. For the Speaker, you know.

6,145,967 – The number of Pell Grants that could have been awarded. The average grant in 2013 was $3,905. The average cost for college in the United States for a public, four-year institution is over $20,000.

8,000 – You could have given every resident of Mississippi, the poorest state in the union, $8,000. Mississippi votes reliably GOP and rejected Obamacare’s Medicare expansion, though a quarter of its citizens live below the poverty line.

4,123,711,340 – The number of containers of LA Looks Mega Mega Holding Gel, presumably the hair goop of choice for Senator Ted Cruz.

1,714,285 – At a whopping $14,500 at some places, the shutdown could have provided for 1,714,285 gay reparative therapy packages for Michele and Marcus Bachmann. The “clinic” I called promised that I could “either turn straight or get significant relief.” Sure.


1,302,224,633 – That’s a whole lotta Korans, with English translations, for Congressman Louie Gohmert (R – LaLa Land), who hates all things Muslim.

250,000,000 – Anal Beads/Premium Dildo Gift Sets, for our friend at Fox News, Sean Hannity.

5,000,000,000 – At a cover charge of five bucks for D.C.’s only lesbian bar, Phase One, Congresswoman Virginia Foxx (R – Crazytown) could have gone to ’80s Night a staggering 5 billion times. Foxx infamously called Matthew Shepard’s murder a “hoax” while debating the hate crimes bill on the floor of the House of Representatives. Shepard’s mother, Judy Shepard, was in the House gallery at the time.

The true cost of the shutdown may go far beyond the $24 billion broken down here. It may take a while for the Bureau of Labor Statistics to come up with the final figures because it was, you know, shut down.

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