An interesting thought occurred to me recently. The US taxpayer is funding both sides in the conflict in Afghanistan.
On the one hand, the US is providing about half of the NATO intervention force in Afghanistan, as well as underwriting the cost of the reconstruction. This involves the direct use of US Tax Dollars.
On the other hand, following on from the post on Oil (Again!) - see post - it would appear that a good percentage of the tax rebate given to the US taxpayers (US Tax Dollars, again) will be used to cover the increased cost of petrol at the pumps in the US. This revenue flows to the oil companies, who buy oil from, say, Middle Eastern sources. Part of the Middle Eastern oil revenues are used to fund Islamic education, some of which are Madrassas in Pakistan. In some of the Madrassas in Pakistan the youths are radicalised and recruited for the Taliban, who then travel to Afghanistan to fight the US troops, courtesy of the US taxpayer.
From a futures perspective, this does not seem sustainable for the long term. From a political perspective, it just seems like madness.