If we seek to optimize efficiency, safety, health, and cost, the car of the future is actually a bicycle.
In the style of Harper's Index, if with so much less elegance...
Number of deaths in the USA due to fundamentalist Islamic terrorists in 9/2001: 2,996
Estimated number of those that were US citizens: 2,669
Number of deaths in the USA due to traffic accidents in the same month: 3,303
Number of deaths in the USA due to fundamentalist Islamic terrorists between 9/12/2001 and 12/31/2008: 0
Number of deaths in the USA due to traffic accidents in approximately the same period: 303,841
Total approved, as of 12/2009, for the three military operations initiated to combat terrorism in response to 9/11 (excluding funds for CIA, FBI, TSA, Homeland Security, etc.): $1,086,000,000,000
Estimated budget for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration over the same period: $6,520,000,000
The NHTSAs budget, expressed as a percent of the amount allocated for these military operations: 00.
Estimate, in 2008, for the final total cost of the Iraq war alone: $3,000,000,000,000
Amount allocated to the military per terrorism related US citizen death in the USA since 9/11/2001: $406,893,967.78
Amount allocated to the NHTSA per traffic related death: $21,458.59
Amount allocated to the military per terrorism related US citizen death in the USA since 9/12/2001: Undefined
Percentage of causes of death in the USA that kill more people than terrorism: 100
Percentage of causes of death in the USA that receive more public money for prevention than terrorism: 0
Percent change in gross federal debt between 2001 and 2010: 232.97
Percentage of gross federal debt in 2001 that would have been eliminated by 1.086 trillion dollars: 18.8
Amount each US household would receive given 1.086 trillion dollars evenly distributed: $9443.48
Rank of defense, excluding expenditure on active military operations, among all categories of federal spending: 1
Percentage of federal spending in 2009 that went to defense: 23
Percentage of federal income in the same year that came from individual income tax: 43
Percentage that came from social security/social insurance tax: 42
Percentage that came from corporate income tax: 7
Sources: http://www-fars.nhtsa.dot.gov http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Casualties_of_the_September_11_attacks http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NHTSA Global Terrorism Database, with specific query used The Cost of Iraq, Afghanistan, and Other Global War on Terror Operations Since 9/11, by the Congressional Research Service (pdf) The three trillion dollar war http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_public_debt Projections of the Number of Households and Families in the United States: 1995 to 2010, from the US department of Commerce (pdf) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_federal_budget
Also, saying that math can express most anything is a pretty strong assertion.
Godel's completeness theorem proves that mathematics is infinite, that is, no collection of mathematical rules and structures can ever be called finished or complete. There's no reason to assume that includes expressing emotion, epistemology, etc., especially because it is known there are different sizes of infinity, but it is clear that math can express an awful lot. Of course there's plenty of reason to conclude that math can't say much about something like ontology, because questions like "what is really real?" (as one of my many philosophy books puts it) are so terribly ill defined that they evade even rudimentary logic.
As American consumers, we pay less for cheap plastic crap now.. at the expense of our jobs and quality.
Ultimately, American consumers caused this problem, because they sought the best value for money. Nobody forced Americans to by products made in China - they chose to, by taking the money out of their pocket and putting it on the counter.
Don't forget that all very powerful corporations have well funded marketing departments, whose entire purpose is the manipulation of people into parting with their money; the perfect advertisement would hook 100% of its audience, which is no different than mind control. If you ask me, the advertisements have been plenty more than effective enough for a long time. Did you know that people didn't really wear deodorant until shortly after shortly after WWII? One of the earliest incarnations was a concept of Bristol-Myers. Then all of a sudden here we are and deodorant is apparently as essential as water. The entire culture was manipulated into thinking that people "stink," which is true but misleading. Consider that deodorant works by blocking the apocrine glands in the armpit, apocrine glands being the special ones that are only found in the armpits, at the areola, and around the genitals. Is it really a leap to assume that if we have any pheremones, that's where they come from? And that by blocking our "stink," we are blocking one of the few ways in which we can sense and communicate with our fellow humans, one that might actually be rather developed after so much evolution? There are some businesses that are making a lot of money based on the misconception that deodorant is necessary; we have been convinced that we need absolutely need so many things when we really don't.
It's pretty clear that the quest of continually increasing profit is naturally anti-people (and unsustainable) because it demands the subjugation of people (employees) in order to undercut the market; it's also in a corporation's best interest to maximally inflate the price of a good over its material cost, which implies maximally taking advantage of their customers (who are people). It's really too bad that instead of using our gift of consciousness to enhance life on Earth and beyond (as the logical conclusion of evolution might suggest we do), we have chosen the strange purpose of trying to get a big number written on a bank slip. What's probably worse is that this culture of greed transcended single individuals and has become the sole drive of large and powerful organizations.