American Defense Budget; Biggest Corporate Welfare, Massive Cuts Are Overdue!
Written by Paul I. Adujie
Cutting the American Defense Budget or Military Spending is panacea for economic recovery, budget balancing and deficit reductions.
After all, what use is the military to beleaguered American citizens who are being thrown out of their homes in foreclosures? Or what use is the military to Americans who are unemployed, broke and desperate? What use is the military to American citizens who are homeless or hungry?
The American economy is in a parlous and precarious state. The American economy remains perilous in tangible-visible and intangible invisible ways.
The American economy is currently hovering between fragile and volatile. Housing starts and prices of new and old homes are at their lowest in 10 years. Housing decline and or stagnancy is troubling in view of the fact that housing bubble or burst is one of the major indicators and one of the indices which measures the direction and state of American national economy.
A lackluster housing sector suggests that real and tangible economy recovery may still be 10 months or more away. And this has consequences for the unemployed and those already beleaguered in the extreme by the continuing economic recession-depression crisis.
Multitudes of municipalities in America, majority of states and even the American national government are all battling budget deficits and the need to balance budgets. Some municipalities are tethering and are on the verge of bankruptcy.
Speaker of the House Representatives John Boehner along with other Republicans such as Rand Paul, have been proposing drastic cuts with harsh and extreme consequences for American citizens.
The Republican Party with their Tea Party surrogates extremists, are parading as deficit hawks, posturing with demands for all sorts of cuts in government spending, which includes proposals to privatize Medicare or to whittle down Medicare benefits, obvious hardships and negative consequences on seniors nationwide
But, lest we forget, it was the Republicans and social conservatives who squandered the Budget Surplus which was created by the President Bill Clinton administration. It was the Republicans who then invented 3 trillion dollars deficit, with the wrongheaded policy, which was the invasion and occupation of Iraq, with the false allegations and sexed up fictional stories about nonexistent Weapons of Mass Destruction in the hands of Saddam Hussein!
The needless invasion and occupation of Iraq, premised on lies, led to the snagging of American taxpayers who are now saddled, sadly, with triple trillion dollars war bills and burgeoning national debt and deficits. Much has been written about the loss of blood and treasure. The needless invasion and occupation of Iraq led to the deaths of more than 5, 000 American troops. Iraqi dead is 650,000, then there are Iraqis who are maimed, dislocated, and displaced.
America’s debts and deficits situation have been greatly exacerbated by the Iraq war. It frittered away blood and treasure on both the American and Iraqi sides.
Ironically, Republicans are suddenly public spending conscious? After 8 years of Republican administrations engaged in squandering of trillions of dollars in the worse than useless invasion and occupation of Iraq?
Republicans are now the ones shouting, cuts, cuts, cuts to every government spending and services, even ones such as Medicare and spending intended to stimulate economic growth which could in turn improve and enhance the tax base as revenue source for governments.
Shockingly and surprisingly, the Republicans and some confused Democrats are splendidly uninterested in cutting Defense Spending or Budget for the Pentagon!
It will be recalled that the Republicans with notorious aversions for government regulations for business and industry, and more particularly so, their aversion for regulating Wall Street or the Financial Markets, also brought about the total economic collapse which ensued from the financial meltdown on Wall Street.
The continuing economic debacle-quagmire, now hovers between fragile to volatile, had its onset from laissez fare attitude by 8 years of Republicans at the White House, during which business and industry were left to self-monitor and self-police and self-regulate themselves, the equivalents of a major roadway or major traffic artery without a cop or traffic lights, where motorists are left to their devices! Hence, of course the chaos which arose, and the consequences which we have now, with inflicted national pains.
Powerful Defense Contractors and their incestuous relationship with American political leadership, through lobbying, influence peddling and campaign contributions, are the reason for the trepidations which is frequently suffered by some. This is exactly why Defense Spending or Defense Budgets are never mentioned in the same sentence as spending cuts and deficit control and efforts to balance budgets etc
Defense Contractors who supply weapons systems, inflicts unnecessary costs on American government and in effect, American citizens taxpayers.
All too often, unnecessary arms and ammunition are created. Weapons which are too often not needed or required by the military, are created by Defense Contractors and their enablers in government, for instance, there is this case of a second engine, a superfluous engine for a military aircraft, which the US Air Force and Defense Department have publicly stated is unneeded and unwarranted for their operations.
It is the case that the manufacturer of the so-called second engine, at some point, actually offered to continue the manufacturing process even after the rejection of the idea of a superfluous second engine! Waste and abuse is endemic and emblematic in Defense Spending. Defense Contractors use job creation arguments to snag congressional members into supporting Defense Spending on elephant projects, this, added to the campaign contributions saccharin to members of congress.
In recent years, civilian Defense Contractors are now doing the bulk of the work in Afghanistan and Iraq. Companies such as BlackWater, Halliburton, Kellogg Brown and Root or KBR and Z, have all been assuming heavy lifting statuses for the American military. Private or Civilian Defense Contractors now dominate American war efforts. A great number of these Defense Contractors are former members of the military personnel, and it suffice to say that none of them are Black, Hispanic, Women or other minorities.
It is the case that the majority of the enlisted persons in the Armed Forces of the United States are the poor, minorities and increasingly women. These are now the foot-soldiers of the US military establishment
In effect, the foot-soldiers have no role in the policy formulations, or, the profitable aspects or sides of wars, which is the purview and exclusive preserve of Defense Contractors and the political class. The political class which is often rewarded with billions of dollars in campaign contributions
Conversely, the poor, minorities and women, who are the proverbial foot-soldiers, physically, literally and metaphorically, are the ones who bear the negative consequences, impacts and adverse effects of all wars.
The foot-soldiers die in their thousands and they are the ones who are mortally injured, maimed or disfigured and or with Post Traumatic Stress Disorders, or PTSD. The foot-soldiers it is who bears the brunt of all wars in terms of death, injuries and other tangible, intangible, visible and invisible horrors and brutalities of all wars.
It bears repeating that foot-soldiers are the ones who are physically and mentally damaged, and too often, they endure these permanent physic al and mental damage and ruined psyche for a lifetime.
As is often the case, American war veterans (the foot-soldiers) are often without jobs upon return from foreign wars. Veterans the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq are mostly unemployed, homeless or sick with physical and mental impairments or disabilities and life for the Defense Contractors and the political leaders remain profitable and life goes on.
It is sad that American veterans of foreign wars are too often left to wither physically and mentally in debilitating conditions and circumstances, including homelessness, this, after they have given their best in carrying out nationals assignment s to which they were assigned by the political leadership and for which Defense Contractors profited handsomely.
It is unconscionable to allow American veterans, in fact, any veterans to suffer physical and mental injuries, homelessness and other indignities, after such veterans have been used and exploited as tools in war efforts
American veterans are too often abandoned and neglected. Veterans are abandoned and neglected as they grapple with physical, psychological and psychiatric disablement, including brain injuries and PTSD etc. All this becomes more glaring in this era of skimping, scrounging and cuts in the name of deficits.
American authorities are now, having to discuss and publicly gripe about the expense of treating war veterans with brain and other assortments of injuries, some visible and other not. America tends to abandon and neglect war veterans, those who fight America’s wars, just or unjust wars.
As debates about Budget Deficits gets louder, some public officials have fretted about the expense of medical and other cares which veterans need and deserve
All reasonable persons are in complete agreement that veterans need and deserve gratitude of a nation which they have served courageously, heroically and selflessly. It is rather disgusting that anyone would think of shortchanging these veterans. Veterans should receive thanks and availed treatments, no expense spared.
While the plights and predicaments of American veterans are too frequently dire and desperate, Defense Contractors on the other hand, are wallowing and swimming in profits from the same wars fought be these abandoned and neglected veterans of these wars
Defense Contractors rake in billions from these wars, even as the foot-soldiers or veterans end up in squalid conditions. Why should any American veteran live in abject poverty and squalor
Whatever the value of all “just” and unjust wars, foot-soldiers are the ones who make waging all wars possible abandoning and neglecting foot soldiers is just plainly unconscionably disgusting!
It is the case that military or defense and attendant spending on wars are assuredly not about the average American citizen and the poor.
Military and wars are rather about the business and political class in every society; Which is why for instance, Defense Contractors inexplicably have symbiotic and even incestuous relationships with the political class Military, Defense and Budget for wars have absolutely nothing to do with the health, wealth and happiness of American poor or average American citizen.
This is so,which is what explains the fact that the Budgets and spending outpaces budgets and spending on health and education in the United States, even aftermath of the economic implosion, debacle-quagmire which followed the financial meltdown on Wall Street or Financial Market.
Currently, fiscal conservatives are loudly and ostentatiously making screeching demands for budget cuts and fiscal discipline and extreme deficit controls, while none among the fiscal conservatives are staunchly in support of Defense Spending without restraints
Unfettered and unmitigated Defense Spending is certainly not in America’s national interests. This is particularly so, in the face of an economy which is not generating employment that American national unemployment rate is currently 9.1%
A) 30,000 municipal workers were eliminated in May 2011
B) 18,000 teachers’ jobs eliminated and New York City alone is set to further eliminate 6,100 teachers’ jobs; The New York City Fire Department is also set to close many Fire Houses, even as the city remains a primary attack target for those who would do America harm.
C) There are 27 million Americans currently unemployed, stopped looking for work or are underemployed
D) Housing constructions has hit a brick-wall, and employment associated, connected and ancillary employment have declined considerably since the housing burst, particularly since easier credits have dried up
E) There are visible and invisible costs associated and connected with budget cuts
F) Stimulus spending is panacea, massive public spending on public infrastructure, roads and bridges and on health and education… The Republicans and their Tea Party surrogates extremists are against any spending whether to stimulate the economy and the Democrats appear to have no agenda, the will, the spine or backbone for vigorous and robust pursuits of stimulus package to revamp America, job creation and all.
G) Mitt Romney blames President Obama as haven failed America, and Republicans are expecting President Obama to blink, perhaps he has already blinked, he is talking more about deficit and spending cuts, as opposed to job creation and stimulus package for the economy!
H) The economy remains a transcendent and dominant issue for America and for presidential candidates in 2012
I) Unemployment is a very personal tragedy, depressing tragedy, which is not being addressed, but instead, debt limits and deficit has subsumed American national economic narratives
J) Millions of Americans are out of work or unemployed and have been so unemployed on the average for over 10 months continuously, the longest such gestation period since the keeping of unemployment records began in 1948. Reality has a left-leaning bias says Steven Cobert
The current American economic recession is over two years now and the concerns about a probable double-dip recession-depression have become more pronounced in the first few days of June 2011, upon the release of the May 2011 job numbers at 54,000 instead of say, 300,000 which were projected.
Furthermore, sales of old and new are in parlous state, and new housing starts remain precarious. These indices are harbingers for economic tough road which may still lies ahead.
In the circumstances, notable economists within and outside the United States have argued strenuously, that massive infusions of spending is an imperative for stimulating American national economic growth, in order to achieve this, the deficit hawks ought stop their current stridency and banish their unreasonable preachment, in the circumstances.
But fiscal conservatives or fiscal hawks, who are ironically, are also the ones who adamantly advocate unrestrained military and defense spending without limits;
These are the very same persons who are opposed to any general services budgets and domestic spending targeted at stimulating the American economy and economic growth hence. Domestic spending will generate domestic employment or jobs for the poor and average Americans, it will as an additional bonus, also generate tax revenues.
If the purpose of military or defense budget and spending is to protect the American people and to defend the homeland, while decimating, defeating and dismantling all those who may constitute threats to vital national interests of the United States, the American way of life, freedom, liberty, democracy and all that good stuff, why sacrifice the American people who are hurting in economic recession-depression hardship and extreme suffering?
It is rather an exercise in self-defeat to neglect Americans who are suffering from current economic recession-depression, while funding military defense and foreign wars ever abundantly?
There are over 4 million mortgage foreclosures and tens of millions of Americans out work who are underemployed.
American citizens are the center and cynosure of American democracy, governance and political processes, supposedly? American citizens are the predicate and or rational basis of every action by the American government, whether such action is foreign or domestic?
Why then, are trillions of dollars squandered on the military, defense budget and on wars, in the face of massive-drastic cuts in the budgets and spending which have direct bearing and impact on the lives of American citizens?
Whose interests do unfettered, unrestrained and unmitigated Defense Budgets and Defense Spending serve?
Millions of Americans citizens are left in the lurch or to carry the bag in these hard, harsh and extremely difficult economic times.
Millions of our neighbors are in dire economic straits in which they have played no part or role whatsoever, in their own economic misfortunes. Americans who are suffering and hurting from current national economic conditions were no participants in creating the conditions which foisted the market failure which was induced by sheer greed and criminality.
And yet, Defense Spending goes on untouched, even as the American government rescued Wall Street, Financial Markets and major financial institutions, including the Auto Industry, with the Reaganesque-Reaganomics idea of trickle down credit and economic recovery. The average American on Main Street never was bailed out.
Neither credit nor employed have flowed since these hundreds of billions of dollars in taxpayer bailouts for businesses. Now, there are these rampant talks about these bailed out businesses sitting upon tons and tons and wads and wads of cash, instead investing lending to stimulate the American economy!
American veterans are returning in droves from foreign wars in Afghanistan and Iraq to unemployment, homelessness, ruined families burdened with PTSD, brain injuries, suicides, and complicated physical and psychiatric issues.
It is time to massively-drastically cut American Defense Budgets and Spending, so we can take care and carter to and for the home-front.
Saving the American people through well thought-out and creatively targeted policies which will produce a buoyant American economy, should be job number one, as opposed to dropping smart bombs in Afghanistan, Iraq and now, Libya. Nation building begins abroad?
In effect, it time to severely cut and prune American military Budget or Defense Spending , in order to save the American people, the real purpose of the American republic and government, saving the people or citizens should be the priority of any organized government in America, and anywhere else for that matter!