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Thread: Why is Military Spending Such a Sacred Cow?

  1. #1
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    Default Why is Military Spending Such a Sacred Cow?

    Here we are in a deep recession and public spending is out of control. Politicians can't agree on how to balance the budget, yet for some reason nobody ever even discusses slashing military spending. I would think at least the democrats would get behind this in a big way but this seems to be a universally accepted sacred cow in Washington.

    Why is that? Slash defense spending in half, the average joe will not notice the difference in their lives one iota. Obviously we should support our troops, but lets have less of them to support. We don't need stealth planes at a billion dollars per unit and all the foreign military bases and camapaigns we're in. The US needs to start pulling out abroad, I don't understand why we're so concerned with policing the world when we have this huge mess at home.

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    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    I agree, but legislative types would probably argue that by slashing the military budget you'd be cutting tons of jobs -- and keeping the Empire powerful and growing is one way to keep the economy from tanking in any given congressional district.

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    I agree and don't get it. We spend more on the military than the rest of the world combined, and are going broke.

    We have no money for transit, urban redevelopment, research, infrastructure, healthcare, environment, education, etc. but want to further build military capacity for nonexistent enemies.

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    NYC Aficionado from Oz Merry's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lofter1 View Post
    ...slashing the military budget you'd be cutting tons of jobs
    Surely they could find something constructive and useful for them to do somewhere in the U.S. where folks need help...assisting with rebuilding after floods/hurricanes, just for one example?? I know, I know, I'm a hopeless idealist.

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    Chief Antagonist Ninjahedge's Avatar
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    I was thinking something similar, but Merry, I think the "job cuts" would be more in the manufacturing of the weapons and every day items NEEDED for the military more so than the soldiers themselves.

    If we actually got these guys here in Times Square directing traffic or giving directions, or even help clean the streets, I think it would be a lot more use than standing around in camo with an M-16.

    The ultimate irony coming in the "fact" that they are there to make us feel safe... when most people (I think) actually feel nervous around them. Like we are in a war zone....

    Maybe the military needs to shift focus and try to become more of a part of the battle against obsolescence and degradation of our own infrastructure. Focus less on guns and bombers and more on the Corp of Engineers......

  6. #6

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    The reason the military budget is such a sacred crow is simple. Defence contractors are important special interest groups who contribute tons of money to our our legislators. No one is willing to compromise their campaign treasure chests by bucking the interests of this strong lobby group.

    It is all about special interests and campaign financing. Serving the people's interest is just not a priority for our legislators; getting re-elected is and it takes money to do that. The system is broken and may be beyond repair.

    Congress sucks.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by eddhead View Post
    Defence contractors are important special interest groups who contribute tons of money to our our legislators. No one is willing to compromise their campaign treasure chests by bucking the interests of this strong lobby group.


    ^ Anywhere else in the world this would be labeled "bribery". (i.e. corruption)
    Last edited by Fabrizio; November 22nd, 2011 at 12:51 PM.

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    Chief Antagonist Ninjahedge's Avatar
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    And we all know how pure and pristine world politics is....

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    Quote Originally Posted by eddhead View Post
    The reason the military budget is such a sacred crow is simple. Defence contractors are important special interest groups who contribute tons of money to our our legislators. No one is willing to compromise their campaign treasure chests by bucking the interests of this strong lobby group.

    It is all about special interests and campaign financing. Serving the people's interest is just not a priority for our legislators; getting re-elected is and it takes money to do that. The system is broken and may be beyond repair.

    Congress sucks.
    I will grant you that 100%, but where is the popular dissent? How is it that the electorate has been brainwashed to equate .6 trillion dollars per year with the amount necessary to "keep us safe". It's got to be vietnam guilt carryover for crappy treatment of the troops

  10. #10

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    You're right, the apathy is appalling. 50 years after, Eisenhower's warning, the Military Industrial Complex is stronger than ever.

  11. #11
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    Did you listen to any of the GOP "National Security" debate tonight? Nearly half the candidates are still fighting the Cold War. Most of the rest are planning for Total World Domination. All without tax increases, of course. Only Ron Paul is sane on this issue (but, unfortunately, not on some other issues).

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    Chief Antagonist Ninjahedge's Avatar
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    Rp does not have enough cranial space to be sane about everything.

    But sometimes you need to have a fool to point out a naked King.

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    it's a start, about time!
    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/06/us/obama-at-pentagon-to-outline-cuts-and-strategic-shifts.html

    Obama Describes Refocused Strategy for Leaner Military
    ...
    Mr. Obama’s strategy embraces hundreds of billions of dollars in cuts to the military, making it an awkward codicil to the uneasy relationship he has shared with the military since his first days in office.
    ...
    The new military strategy is driven by at least $450 billion in Pentagon budget cuts over the next decade. An additional $500 billion in cuts could be ordered if Congress follows through on plans for deeper reductions.
    ...

  14. #14

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    ^Just in time for him to be replaced.

  15. #15

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    with what...certainly not with any of the candidates from the gop

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