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December 28, 2012

Why aren't we even talking about this?

It's been quite a while since I've posted anything. The situation seems so immune to change. But at least I can bellyache even if I can't change anything.

Why is it that in every discussion about budget cuts, including those coming from the President and other high-level Democrats, there is little to nothing said about the military? 

We have something on the order of over 900 Flag Officers (Generals & Admirals) each with million dollar retinues to cater to their every whim. They have six-figure salaries, government provided mansions, cars and private jets. And when they retire on their six-figure retirement plans, a lot of them join companies like Raytheon, GE, Lockheed or the like to peddle more waste back to Congress and their erstwhile colleagues in the military. The waste here is incredible! How many kids could we educate with the savings from just slashing these cadres in half?

Why do we need to have over 700 military bases scattered around the world, not even counting the ones we built in Iraq and Afghanistan? How long could we extend Medicare for just the savings of closing half of those bases?

Why on earth do we need eleven aircraft carriers, when the rest of the world combined has only ten? And most of those belong to our allies. How many billions are spent each year on these carrier groups? How many years could Social Security be extended if we just reduced the size of our Navy by half?

The Pentagon plans to buy a total of 2,443 F-35 fighters at a rough average cost of around two hundred million dollars apiece. For what? Blowing up more goat-herders in the Middle East? I won't even suggest depriving the Generals and Congress their shiny new jets, but if they just cut that number by half, they'd save $244 billion dollars! How many bridges and highways could be repaired with that money?

But what are we arguing about? How big of a tax break we will be giving millionaires and corporations. And how many benefits we will be slashing to the poor and the elderly.

What the fuck are we doing?

2 comments:

  1. That is fascinating, and new to me. This answers a lot of questions I had based on military spending and the importance of our size and status. The World knows our military as a reputation of being one the best in history, same goes for our surveillance, infiltration and nuclear capabilities combined with a super proud and highly protective batch of citizens. So why do we need to maintain EXCESSIVE military force? Like you said, it is insanity. and I agree.
    I would like to know how you feel on military spending for government agencies like the CIA, FBI, Secret Service, ect.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't have accurate figures on how much is spent on those agencies because so much of it is secret or hidden in other budgets. I am sure, however that there is a great deal of duplication of efforts and spending as most, if not all, of those agencies don't share their info. Why we need dozens of separate agencies to accomplish nearly the same thing escapes me. For example: why do we have a CIA, NSA, Secret Service, TSA, Dept of Homeland Security, etc. There are in total 16 different intelligence agencies in the US Government! There should be ONE!

      Here's another little tidbit for you: You already probably know the US has the largest Air Force in the world. Do you know who has the second largest?

      The US Navy.

      Delete

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