Lewis and Clark, What a Waste of Money!

Let’s see here, Jefferson buys a huge swath of land from a known tyrant, who uses this money to expand his war of aggression in Europe. Don’t forget that nowhere in the Constitution does it say that the President has the authority to do such a thing, but Jefferson does it anyway. Additionally, this helps Napoleon since it frees up more resources for his planned conquest of Europe.

Next, Jefferson spends an exorbitant amount of money (possibly as much as $179 billion in today’s money) to send Lewis and Clark in search of the “Northwest Passage.” You know, the gap between the US and Canada which will permit easy passage of ships from the Atlantic to the Pacific. Of course, they never find it. Way to waste an infant country’s money, especially considering that it still has war debts to pay off and has just put down a small rebellion. The tiny population of the United States didn’t even need the room, so why waste the country’s money on such a thing?

“But look at all the things we’ve gotten from there!” People say. Ah, yes, we got places like New Orleans who’s primary contributions to American culture has been the homoerotic vampire novels of Anne Rice, low-grade jerk off porn starring Snoop Doggy Dog and another city for JFK conspiracy nuts to converge on. There’s also Minnesota, home of the annoyingly unfunny Garrison Keillor. Finally, there’s the Dakotas, a place so unremarkable and featureless that the residents were forced to con the Federal Government into defacing one of their mountains in a desperate bid to attract tourist dollars.

Additionally, there’s never any mention of the fact that neither Jefferson nor Napoleon bothered to consult with the Native Americans who actually lived in the territory and were the only ones with a valid claim to the land if they agreed with the deal. Considering that one of the next acts of the US government was to promptly to attempt to wipe the Native Americans out, whereas the French were content to leave them alone for the most part, I’d say that the answer would be a resounding “No!” Imagine knowing that your ancestors died solely so that a bunch of pathetic guys could jerk off over pictures of half naked women taken on land that rightly belonged to you. Pretty demoralizing, no?

Given all that, can we really say that the acquisition of the Lousiana Purchase was worth it? Certainly, in a modern, civilized society such as our own, we’d not allow such a thing to happen. If President Bush were, for example, to attempt to buy Kuwait from Saddam Husseing, not only would there be massive domestic opposition to such an edeavour, but the entire world would rise up against us as well. And yet, here we are, on the bicentennial of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, celebrating it, instead of mourning the damage which it caused, not only to the Constitution, but the native peoples as well.

You left out out the oppression of settler women, Pomp’s death due to living with the white man and the creation of modern California.


Been holding this one in for a while, have we?

No, no, no! California was stolen from Mexico! And it’s no more an inaccurate description of what happened than many of the anti-NASA comments that have been posted!

Yes, but you see, if the US hadn’t obtained the Louisiana purchase then we wouldn’t have stolen California and we wouldn’t have negative unrealistic female body type expectations built on the Baywatch women with their silicone breasts and anorexically induced body shape.

That’s what Lewis and Clark hat wrought, my friend. If Jefferson hadn’t made the purchase, we’d all be on the east coast with fat, happy sexy women and Jennifer Lopez would be considered an unfortunate waif.

HEY! What’s wrong with vampire homoeroticism??

New Orleans is hot and steamy–what better place could there be for writing homoerotic vampireisms? Or was it the other way around? Anyway, if we didn’t have New Orleans, we wouldn’t have Mardi Gras, and then were would we be?

And South Dakota is great and don’t you forget it. If it weren’t for South Dakota, we wouldn’t have Wall Drugs and we wouldn’t have the Corn Palace. Where would we be without those two?

The terrorists would have already won.

We would :eek: ? Really?

Then speaking as a fat sexy east coast woman, who would be happy but for the dearth of male attention, I say damn Lewis and Clark! Damn them to hell!!
But I don’t see why you have to bring their hats into it…:slight_smile:

My response to your OP is, for now at least, only a rather narrow one.

I looked in the large history textbooks on my shelves and found nothing on the actual cost of the expedition. While it is clear that Jefferson initially asked Congress to pony up $2,500, the final cost of the trip is not mentioned.

Then i went online, and from this site and this one learned that the final cost was in the neighbourhood of $38,000.

Now, while this was certainly a lot of loot in the early nineteenth century, i have a bit of trouble believing that it constitutes “as much as $179 billion in today’s money.” If your conversion rate holds, then the $15 million paid for Louisiana itself is equivalent to $70,657,894,736,842, or about $70 trillion in today’s money.

I’m not saying you’re necessarily wrong, only that the numbers seem too big, even taking into account two centuries of inflation. Perhaps you would care to elaborate on where you got your figures, and how you made your calculations?

I don’t think you want him to turn around and drop his pants to show you his cite.

200 years on and now you take offense? L&C did quite a lot for America, and for those they met along the way (and they for L&C).

As for the Louisiana Purchase, Napoleon had been trying to make his way north from New Orleans, but could never quite take control. Being the emotional git he was, after being badgered enough times by Jefferson, he sold the land at a miniscule price.

Regarding the cost of the L&C expedition, equipping a journey is always expensive. However, because they did not really take into account the size of the country, what they did have was not near enough. They would have starved long before reaching halfway if not for the kindness and generosity of many tribes, and the knowledge of Sacagewea.

Also, the excursion paved the way to claim Oregon Country, and take it away from the British. Like many American endeavours, shove settlers (years later with the Oregon Trail) into an area you want to claim and shove those already there out, or kill them to get them out of the way (as in Native Americans).

If you’d care to read a very interesting book on this very subject, including excerpts from the L&C journals, then I would highly recommend Undaunted Courage by Stephen E Ambrose, a noteable historian.

With all the shit that’s going off at the moment, this is what gets your tits up? Did they just have a special on A&E or summat?

Sorry, sunshine, even a skeptic like me can see the benefit of this expedition for America.

Its been 200 years or so since the Louisiana purchase? I did not know that.

Isn’t it about time we took over Mexico? Or invade Canada or something? :smiley:

…and plagiarist.

The worst part is that we have Sacajawea on the dollar coin and will soon have Lewis & Clark on the nickle. What did they do exactly but confirm what the trappers and tribes had told them beforehand?

They’re David Simmons numbers and they’ve been shown to be inaccurate since I posted the OP. And I don’t think that the Lewis and Clark Expedition was a waste of money, I’m just a little tired of the anti-space/anti-NASA attitude some folks have had of late. They’re more than happy to spew comments about space exploration being a waste of money because it hasn’t done this or that, while forgetting that explorers like Lewis and Clark didn’t achieve all of their objectives. (Hell, Columbus never found India, but not too many people bother to mention that!)

Considering that Saddam doesn’t have the “pink slip” to Kuwait, why would we buy it from him? Now, on the other hand, if the Kuwaities wanted to sell out their country for CASH, today, we’d be a quick buyer. And there would be only minor opposition in the US.

“Whoosh!” sam “Whoosh!”

They’re probably too smart to accept a post dated, two party, out of town check, don’t you think?

This was news to me as in the UK he is an unknown, so there was no news to these allegations. I was also unaware he had passed away. What a loss, he was a good writer.

From the New York Times:

Also, from the Salt Lake City Tribune:

The man admitted his error, in context a snippet from thousands of pages.

Whilst I’m not arguing he didn’t make a mistake, it still remains that the book I mentioned is a bloody good book.

The Copper Beeches, coinage representations are chosen by the people. There are all sorts of people on money that do not deserve to be there, and many who should be but are not. If you feel so strongly these people have no right being on money, rally similarly minded people and speak out. One of the few remaining freedoms of America - freedom of speech… for now anyway.

Tuckerfan, it cheeses me that you would post an OP that you admit to not being in line with your true feelings. If this were so, you should have made note to this at the end of your OP, not let people respond to the OP then claim whoosh… tsk tsk tsk I am very disappointed in you matey.

You know, I debated about doing that, but I also figured that since I’ve hit damn near every thread on the space program of late, with a near violent pro-NASA, pro-exploration stance that I figured it’d be obvious that this thread was satire. My apologies for misleading anyone.