The article above is about how our defense budgets and prosperity of the our military contractors might be taking a hit in the coming years of apparent austerity (that is except for the richest of us). It mentions that military budgets might be trimmed as much as 10% in the coming years, especially if the super committee in congress can’t re-direct the cuts to other areas. Here is a quote from the article; just click on the link above to see the whole article:
The U.S. spent $1.3 trillion in the ten years following the attacks chasing al-Qaida and fighting two wars. That was on top of baseline military spending in excess of $4 trillion.
So in the last ten years we have spent over $5 trillion on our wars and the machinery to support them and this doesn’t include the huge tax breaks that we give our military contractors. This comes out to somewhere around $50,000 per U.S. household! So for the last ten years I have been paying $100/week to fight our wars. Or actually in reality it is more likely a very big chunk of our national debt has been accumulated for this purpose.
As I have mentioned here several times we in the U.S. spend about forty times more per citizen on our military than any other country in the world and of course by our national debt it shows. So, when it comes to the super committee I certainly hope someone points this disparity out to them. We could cut our debt in half very quickly by just downsizing our military and still we could maintain our super power status that seems to be so important to many of us (but certainly not to me).
I look at the war of my generation which was Vietnam and see how futile it was and how expensive is was in terms of my friends lives and our tax dollars. We basically asked (or maybe told as the draft was in effect at the time) over 50,000 of our young men to forfeit their lives because we did not like the form of government that Vietnam chose. Of course now as is most often the case Vietnam, even though they still cling to a form of government form we opposed, is one of our friends who make much of the goods we now purchase. In the coming years we will realize that it was impossible to “make” a country such as Iran or Iraq a democratic republic. The only way that can happen is how it happened to us, by a deep commitment by its citizens not from an outside invasion.
But what do I know…..