"How much will the proposed soldier bonus bill cost?" asked the Senate Finance Committee.
"$2,119,000,000," said Howard P. Brown, actuary of the Veterans' Bureau.
"$3,300,000,000," said Herbert Hess, actuary of the American Legion.
"$4,850,000,000," said Joseph S. McCoy, actuary of the Treasury Department.
"Well, well, well," said the Finance Committee. "Will the War and Navy Departments kindly send us their data? We'll do the calculating ouselves. "
Of course, the three actuaries know how to add, multiply and divide. The differences between their figures are due to different basic assumptions, of...