Again, to place our "defense" spending in a global context, " Even the smaller figure of $515.4 billion...is roughly equal to the total military budgets of all the rest of the world's nations combined."
Who exactly are we defending ourselves from and what does that mission have to do with two new super-carriers and new nuclear subs to defend against navy's that don't exist.
After giving an overview of the key elements of the latest budget and adding in the cost of actually fighting two wars that ARE NOT included in the budget Fred notes,
What efficiencies is the Pentagon taking to accommodate these technological risks? The "Overview" section of the Pentagon's budget document contains a section called "Program Terminations." It reads, in its entirety: "The FY 2009 budget does not propose any major program terminations."And as Fred notes, Congress is terrified to conduct any oversight or trim the budget for fear of being called 'weak on defense' or 'anti-military'.
Is it remotely conceivable that the Defense Department is the one federal bureaucracy that has not designed, developed, or produced a single expendable program? The question answers itself.
So explain to me, my Conservative readers, where is the fiscal conservatism in this budget? What justifies our spending as much as the rest of the entire freakin' world on defense?
We've got all the money in the world for weapons systems to fight enemies that have existed for 20 years but not a dime more for health insurance for children.
SecDef Gates say that we has a nation should get used to spending 4% of GDP on Defense. Kaplan asks why?
...This isn't an unreasonable sum in terms of what the nation can afford. But the same could be said of many other functions of government. It has very little to do with what the nation needs. The $515.4 billion in the base line Defense Department budget amounts to 3.4 percent of GNP. Is that not enough? Should we throw in another $85 billion to boost it to 4 percent?
The relevant question, in any case, should be not how much we spend, but what we buy.