The Ballooning Costs of Defense Spending

by Vince


Foreign Policy tells of the voluminous spending on sometimes unrealistic defense measures. This stuff really interests me and is worth reading in full:

To anyone who hasn’t been paying attention, let’s go over it one more time: In February the Pentagon requested $708.2 billion for fiscal year 2011 — which would make the coming year’s defense budget, adjusted for inflation, the biggest since World War II. As one analysis of the budget points out, that would mean that total defense spending — including the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq — has grown 70 percent in real terms since 2001. Defense spending now accounts for some 20 percent of federal discretionary spending. That’s even more than Social Security.

And though his department’s request for 2011 hasn’t gone to the same lengths, there are still some out there who hope Robert Gates could yet become the new poster child for the Eisenhower tradition of conservative doubts about the “military-industrial complex.” But perhaps that’s a little premature. Some would-be budget-cutters point out that Gates favors the notion of setting U.S. military spending at a fixed percentage of GDP — which, they note, would more likely than not leave outlays at a permanently high level.

http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2010/07/07/life_by_a_thousand_cutsTo anyone who hasn’t been paying attention, let’s go over it one more time: In February the Pentagon requested $708.2 billion for fiscal year 2011 — which would make the coming year’s defense budget, adjusted for inflation, the biggest since World War II. As one analysis of the budget points out, that would mean that total defense spending — including the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq — has grown 70 percent in real terms since 2001. Defense spending now accounts for some 20 percent of federal discretionary spending. That’s even more than Social Security.
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