Thursday, July 28, 2011

Defense Cuts? Don't Believe it Until you See Them

July 27, 2011
Dissent Magazine / By Mark Engler
Photo Credit: PRWatch

In the real world, talk of cuts to the military has a way of evaporating when it comes time for appropriations.

One upshot of the debt-ceiling debate is that politicians might finally be ready to trim the outrageously bloated U.S. military budget. That’s the story, anyway, being told bythe Washington Post. The paper reported: “[A]s lawmakers and the White House move closer to a grand bargain that could reshape the country’s fiscal priorities, Pentagon budget planners are...girding for the possibility that they will have to reduce projected spending by as much as $800 billion over the next 12 years.”

Certainly, it would make sense, in a time when conservatives are insisting on austerity, that the military—a huge and pork-laden area of discretionary spending—would be on the table. But there’s a good rule of thumb about defense cuts: Don’t believe them until you see them.

The Nation’s Robert Dreyfuss is optimistic that real cuts will be in the offing. In a piece entitled, “Defense on the Chopping Block,” he wrote: “Now, it appears that Obama is backing cuts as much as $886 billion, and that might just be an opening bid.” Of hawkish conservatives who are warning against reductions in Pentagon spending, Dreyfuss wrote:

It’s okay to laugh at their contention that the military is being “stretched thin” after a decade of unbridled expansion and a doubling of military spending since 2000, not even counting Iraq and Afghanistan.

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Ted Amadeus said...

M-IC Papists & their OMFR Khazakh overlords will NEVER agree to it: It would compromise their ability to enforce the will of the UN VeldtSchtaaters.

texlahoma said...

Ted - I agree. I wonder when spending defense money on defense became such a radical idea.
They should have to show how much of the defense budget is spent on invading and occupying other countries.

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