arma virumque cano (et alia)
I agree that the military spending needs to be cut back dramatically. However, if you look at projected budgets, you will see that the big budget items of the future are Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security - http://www.cbo.gov/ftpdocs/78xx/doc7851/03-08-Long-Term%20Spending.pdfEvery year there are supposed to be cuts to the rates doctors are paid by Medicare, but every year Congress has overridden these cuts. They claim the credit that the cuts will save in the budget, but then they undo their own savings and never mention the new expense (and associated debt).
Jim:If we quit "projecting force" for the oil companies and other multi-nationals that influence our elections and foreign & domestic policy, there would be a LOT more money to do infrastructure upgrades, help the less fortunate and care for those who need medical help.
People who complain about fighting wars for oil should pay close attention to what they put in their fuel tanks. Getting away from dependence on foreign oil is a good idea, but we aren't able to achieve that just yet.
DC - again, I agree that the defense budget needs huge cuts. Remove all of the foreign troops, cut way back on our military stockpiles of nuclear weapons, ground equipment designed to invade another country, etc. etc. We should never be involved in another land war where we have troops on the ground in a foreign country. It is just not our job to do such a thing.However, even if you were to completely eliminate the defense budget, in a few decades the Medicare, SS, and Medicaid programs will consume that money plus even more. Look at the future budget projections for these programs. They are going to bankrupt our nation if massive reforms are not taken soon.
Greg Camp:So now you're the forgeign policy expert as well. Please explain how killing people in Iraq has made fossil fuels cheaper in this country. Then explain how it has contributed to our energy independence. Then please show us the spreadsheet that confirms your assertion.
Democommie,I didn't say that the war and occupation in Iraq was done in a competent manner. I was responding to people who whine about wars for oil. My point is that protecting an essential resource is a legitimate cause for military action. Whether such a war can be fought well is another subject altogether.
Policing the world is expensive. The problem is the reason we do it is all about special interests, not about making the world safer or better.One of the most powerful special interests is the arms manufacturers themselves.
Mikeb302000,Of course we act in our own interest. So does every other country, at least in so far as each nation understands its interests.