Guilherme--Grow up. We've been over this before. Just because YOU departmentalize "defense," doesn't mean everyone does, or agrees.
Lady Eboshi--Well said. 100% Agree. I do NOT get this attitude of doing things the same way because it always has been. The military needs to evolve.
AirForceWife--You know you're my bud! You invited me across country for Xmas eve! Yes, the military IS a lot of jobs. The government is a huge employer in many areas. We've already massively cut government workers in all areas, thus while private sector jobs are growing, the jobs rate doesn't look as good if you're cutting government jobs at the same time. There are no easy answers to this. I would MUCH rather have the money spent on government workers teaching our kids, building our roads, protecting our citizens, etc. than deployed fighting or protecting other countries, and I think most people are in agreement on this.
And, you're probably right. They don't intend to cut spending for anything because we have such a bought government. Hey, at least the SC said today they will look at political contributions, so maybe it's a step. Sigh.
cabellero--Seriously? So. There are a lot of things not in the Constitution. It's a framework, not a rulebook for every situation. But, yes, I am upset that we have millioniaires, billionaires, and corporations who are the biggest welfare recipients of all. Like Haliburton. So, how do we stop it?
I agree. We do need to cut military spending. Our military can work WAY more efficiently than it does. No-bid government contracts in Iraq and Afganistan bleed our country dry. Yea, those companies charging our own government gobs of money are patriots doing civic duty for America. Give me a break. Our troops helped protect those contractors. Who enlisted for that? We don't need 6 figure missles for *practice*, either. They should be for combat. Our military wastes money because it can.
Vet Affairs is separate and is short-changed. Why? Vets don't make politicians money. Contractor agencies do.
And please don't go all patriotic for all of the troops we sent there. My family did tours in Iraq and Afganistan and witnessed young Americans pissing on civilians, beating civilians, and holding guns to civilian heads because they were on a power trip with a gun. They knew of rape of civilians and female American troops. Rape of female american troops! Who stood up for the civilians and our female troops? Young jerks out of control shamed our country. They don't deserve the admiration and support that our ethical troops deserve.
We had no business invading Iraq yet we had to pay for it for 10 years. That's a big reason why we're a bankrupt country. So yea, we need to cut defense spending. They need to learn how to budget and identify priorities and become efficient.
Lots of other government agencies need to learn how to be efficient, too. There's no oversight and there's too much waste.
“There are two ways to conquer and enslave a nation. One is by the sword. The other is by debt.”
We sadly are on the fast track to becoming vulnerable to both. The solution would be for our government to pull its collective head out of its bum and start functioning for the betterment of a nations people rather then the betterment of government.
I seem to remember reading something in the Bowles-Simpson stuff as it related to the military but won't get it correct if I try to paraphrase. Maybe there was more concern over huge "pensions" for folks who served non-combat or something?? I just can't remember - wondering if anyone waded through the comprehensive report. I had tangible crap to muck & no time
FWIW, BIL flies C-17s and the cuts are making life beyond stressful for my sister & her family. While there are many benefits to their way of life, they've also given up much. When she was complaining to me about his job insecurity, my first response was "welcome to middle America, sister" but in remembering how he would be gone for a couple of months at a time on his secret mission stuff in the middle east...how she & her daughters worried daddy might not come home...I'm not in any place to talk cuts with her.
It is really depressing to see the lack of critical thinking ability displayed in the comment above.
Even a cursory examination of the data presented in the article linked above reveals that the survey does not show that a majority of Americans favor cutting defense spending over entitlements. It shows that they are evenly split with an error margin of +/-5.4%.
The issue is they don't agree on which entitlements to cut.
Additionally it should be noted that respondents were selected from a group of interent users, not the general population.
nhrw--It is really depressing to see the lack of critical thinking YOU display because of the ONE example I posted. MOST Americans favor cutting defense. I would assume you would be able to look up more specifics all by yourself. I would assume you would read the WHOLE thread and understand the WHOLE focus, and not just respond to one little thing.
And, your use of the word "entitlement" for BENEFIT programs we PAY into by having money pulled out of our paychecks is REALLY depressing, showing the lack of understanding of what we save for, and what we just spend on. People do not want to CUT a BENEFIT they pay into.
Several of the links you cite refer to the same survey (CPI) which if one reads the questionaire, is clearly designed to produce the result it obtained. That is more than simply bad math, it demonstrates an intent to mislead, rather than inform. The others show results similar to the one originally posted, an even split but a disagreement over which entitlements to cut.
And entitlement is the appropriate term. These programs have liabilities which are not fully funded and do provide services to people who have never contributed to what funding actually exists. Also there programs like Medicaid are funded by taxes but many have no access to them.
The maintenance of the military is one of the few responsibilities of federal government that is outlined in the constitution. Education, health care, retirement benefits, care of the indigent aren't.
Being an oldster and growing up through the Cold War and nuclear threats, I think the world is far more dangerous place today than then. Yet we are cutting our nuclear capability as rogue nations are increasing them. Any one think Pakistan should have them? much less Iran? Our navy is about the size it was before WWI.
That is a strange argument. The US has sufficient nuclear weapons of every flavor from surgical to blunderbuss with effective modern delivery systems to annihilate every rogue nation perhaps 100 times over. I'd be perfectly comfortable with a small fraction of that in terms of national security. Why aren't you?
As for the Navy, to borrow a phrase, size doesn't so much matter as how you use it. Unless we tie it up in these endless costly and unnecessary interventions, there's no question of our being able to keep the sea lanes open. What's more, naval power is not so relevant in projecting power as once it was, except as another means of supporting the air power that is pretty much the coin of the realm.
"Things should be as simple as possible, but no simpler." - Einstein
“So what’s up with years of lessons? You still can’t ride a damn horse?!”
We've been though this before the players are the same the song slightly different but it all comes out off tune.
BTDT you and I see things so differently when it come to military spending BUT on some we see the same. There is a lot of waste but then again there isn't. I can say without laughing there is a logical and safety reasons that the 500$ toilet set was purchased. I don't know if it has been declassified so that is all I'm going to say. See B-1 tech. But many of the contractors ( not counting Halburton <sp>) are doing things that we don't know much about but get critized when something that sounds silly gets leaked.You would be surprised when you get to the nitty gritty of it.
As for cutting of the military in general I want you to focus on the link from the AF times. I knowest that much of those who wanted cuts to happen were primarly in strongly Dem. areas, with the minority in Rep. areas. And in those areas both Dem and Rep areas they wanted a "cap" on salary's in the military And to "change" the retirement age to 60 ( I read this as to getting their retirement if someone retireires before the age of 60 )And the reduce or to keep the same the allowances. Well a cap on salary's to what the AD enlisted( cant speak for officers) already are paid below the poverty level and depending on rank are on FS.
When DH and I got married he brought home 900$ a month this included the "housing allowance" of a whole 200$ for living in Calif. It went up when DH got married it was 50$ for living on the ship for basic needs like soap. But even then 200$ in Calif. Yeah that would if that is all we used which according to the houseing office is all we should need. (this was 30 yrs ago)maybe would have allowed us to rent a trunk of a car.
So of course we used some of his pay. For something I would not allow my children to rent. The place had teenage muntant ninja roaches in it. They were quite comfortable living in my microwave. We bombed the place 4 times before we moved in and still had roaches. The roof leaked, we had to move our bed several times to avoid the drips. I wont go into all the boring details. But I'm sure you get the picture. But places like that are what the Dod calls sufficant housing for enlisted. And people want to cut allowances...
But that isn't the only one I guess. There is the (in the navy) the hazard duty pay you get for being on a reallllllyyy tall ship. One that is in the water and goes out to sea where accidents happen. But I guess 50$ (last I heard about 5yrs ago) a month is to much for risking their lives.
And Tricare oh don't get me start on that.. just spent the better part of two days on the phone with them and it looks like I'm going to have to spend the better part of today with them to fix a screw up of theirs and find a fax to fax something to them so they will reinstate my coverage that they screwed up on. Oh yeah because of this screw up I have to cancel 6apts I have.. And go without my meds until the end of the month.( which are due to run out on Sat.) Yes go ahead and raise their rates they are doing such a good job now I'm sure they will do a bang up job with more money.
And just a bit of history for ya. Something both sides seem to forget. When ever this country has reduced our military strienght the war of 1812 we had "reduced" it by sending all the malita home and why not we were not "at war" with anyone. Then the British came and eventually burned Washington D.C. The start(for us) of WWII we were actually as I recall going for Neutrality not just isonalst(sp sorry) we reduced our military to rates almost/ below WWI numbers. And what happened.. We lost many souls in Pearl Harbor... and then our entry into WWI of which we were not ready for militarily speaking we were low on men, tanks, aircraft, ships (some due to Pearl most do to just not repairing/upkeeping the one they had in mothballs). The last we all remember 9=11 our military was reduced to WWII levels and some using paintballs for their shooting practice.. We were caught off guard again.
Do you think we should reduce our military to smaller them they already are? Right now there is that guy in Koreia who keeps saying and just acting like a mad man and we are still at war with Koreia soo anything can happen. And China well what can we say about them...
I do agree with you on the Veterans though. They should be taken care of as per agreed to when the VA admn. was first thought of. But again they have legislation on the floor I don't know if it a stand alone or of it is buried in another bill. But to cut certain vets form ellgebality or to lower the elligabitly numbers that at some redicilously low number you wonder how a person can live on only that much per month. They are called "priority group 7 and 8 so low on list to being with. The leslation will either make their fees so high they will be able to afford services or lock them out completely. So two more groups off the VA service rolls. I see in 40 or 50yrs with the way they are being cut out of the VA And with the VA only servicing WWI and Vietnam vets the VA will be a thing of the past. So there are your extra funds.(not you as in you but you general) to go to welfare programs and Obamacare..
Perhaps it's just me but I would rather soldiers that can defend our nation from attacks like we faced on 9-11 than teachers/Road workers. I would also rather congress stop spending all the money that I'm saving. Last year alone with over 10+ contract actions I saved the Army nearly $2million. What happened to that money you ask? It got spent somewhere else because they knew if it wasn't the next time they really needed the money it wouldn't be there.
Multi-national corporations, and the international movements of money are already truly in control of an evolving global civilization. At this point, any military intervention is primarily a mopping-up of some of the more "uncivilized" parts of that.
I can easily see the entire construct of the "Nation-State" becoming irrelevant and obsolete in our lifetime. I believe it is already happening.
AirForceWife as I'm sure you know "government accounting" is to accounting as "government music" is to music.
I was personally involved, as a flight instructor, in one of the early "aircraft contractor maintenance" contracts for the Naval Air Training Command. I've always wondered who wrote it because it bore little relation to the realities of training Student Naval Aviators. I wrote a memo up the chain to the Wing Commander citing the difficulties (I actually read and referenced the contract by paragraph). I was summoned to his office with my C.O. where we met a bunch of heavies. The result was that they thanked me for my interest but told me to mind my own business. In reality everything they did was "by the book." It could not be done any other way. It was almost a classic example of "careerism" meets "administrative inflexibility."
By the way, this same approach explains $400 hammers and $1600 toilet seats.
Put another way, the "system" mandated by Congress generates these results.
Beentheredonethat's OP was not an invitation to rational discussion; it was a mishmash of untruth and politically motivated disinformation. He/She/It has done that before and they know better. To repeat the same message over and over again, even though it’s patently false, is to demonstrate that they are a propagandist pushing a Big Lie, not someone looking for information of a fair exchange of ideas.
In my youth I hung out with a guy in grade school who I still keep in touch with. He got drafted and went to ‘Nam while I got my wings and chased Russian subs in the North Atlantic. Even though he was “anti-war” he served his time honorably and was discharged. I was in town shortly after that and we got together to drink some beer and reminisce. At one point he asked me “how many aircraft carriers do we really need?” My response was “you’ve asked the wrong question.” The right question is “what level of force projection presence do we want to maintain and where and for how long?” The answer to that question tells you how much of anything you need.
In other words military assets (personnel and material) are instruments of national policy, not creators of that policy. How much of anything you have is driven by what you want to do in the world. If you want to be activist then you need a military establishment with those capabilities (and they are expensive). If you’re a neo-isolationist and want to retreat to Fortress America then your requirements are quite different and a lot cheaper. Of course the presence of ICBMs, cruise missiles, armed drone aircraft, and well funded terrorist groups successful at recruiting young men willing to commit suicide to make a point mean that your retreat will likely not make you any safer.
Right now we’re not at war with anybody, but lots of people are at war with us. Some seem to have forgotten the events of 9/11. Some seem to want to ignore the events in Benghazi. The Chinese seems to have launched a cyber offensive on a massive scale. And there’s the problem of the “lone wolves.” What sort of defenses do we need in this environment? Or should be follow the Bible and “turn the other cheek” and surrender “our tunic and cloak?” The answers to these questions determine how much we have to spend.
P.S. I address this for your comment as you seem to be reasonable, rational, and have some interest in fair discussion.