"IS ANYBODY PAYING ATTENTION?" The mindful view of an educated Buddhist blogger who uses critical thinking, evidence, facts, and investigation to come up with his opinions instead of fear based ideologies.
Saturday, May 26, 2012
The Defense Budget
I found a survey that speaks to the question I have a military spending. To begin with, our military, like many parts of our government programs, is the most over bloated, over funded, and over expensive travesty in our nation. If you want to scream about taxes being wasted, you should see how much stuff gets thrown away by the military so as to increase their deficit and purposely wasted money so they can ask for a bigger budget next year. That has been going on since Ike Eisenhower in the fifties warned us to "Beware the military industrial complex". Previous to the end of World War 2 we didn't have a huge armament industry. We only geared up for war in case we were threatened but at the time, some felt that we shouldn't wait for an emergency like Pearl Harbor to get ready to defend ourselves. We have been ready since. But at a certain point, defense became an industry. It became an industry for the unemployable in any other field to take shelter. There are those who joined, went to college, learned technical skills, but, many will never have the skills to do more than kill people. If the guy who isn't smart enough to work at a car wash is encouraged to go into the military to "become a man" or women who don't feel comfortable in mainstream society become comfortable in the military, then, we have created an employment vehicle and the military looks at their budget as such. They use the word defense and security as if we are under threat constantly but that, as we found out after the fifties, with Civil Defense Alerts and bomb shelters, that was all government smoke and mirrors designed to make us feel comfortable like the "duck and cover" program or showing the movie "Reefer Madness" to elementary school children. Eventually the public figured out that duck and cover was actually silly. Some news commentator came on television (the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson) and explained to us that we were paying for a government program to teach children that if they hid under their desk when a blast that could irradiate the brick wall besides them went off, they would be safe if they cowered under their desk. We also figured out that "Reefer Madness" was an alarmist exaggeration and had no validity in fact, basically a propaganda film, and like so many other Hollywood versions of the United States and our society's issues it was designed to cause us to lapse into a state of fear over something that the people who wrote the movies had no real knowledge of. So we paid and we keep paying because they keep us in a state of fear over "national defense". Here is a chart that shows where our tax dollars actually go as per the financial budget of Uncle Sam through our congress.
As you can see, we spend 57 percent of the money collected in taxes (and then some) on National Defense and the Defense Department makes sure they spend every penny they get and then some each year so that the following year they can ask for a bigger budget. This has been going on since the Eisenhower administration left office. We are now living through the danger zone that Ike warned us about on January 17th, 1971. If we put half that money into retraining soldiers instead of keeping them working in the military, then, our nation would prosper immensely. It is now time to start thinking in those terms instead of trying to be the world's police force. That was never our job and the people who think it is are eventually going to a) lead us into a state of bankruptcy, and b) keep sucking our economy dry and lead us into another type of financial system like socialism when capitalism fails under the strain. An over bloated sense of empowerment and too much military spending is what caused the collapse of the Soviet Union and we may be following into their footsteps ever since we walked into Iraq and Afghanistan. I pray that we never see that day but to avoid it, we have to start thinking differently. We need to do that now, not whenever the predatory capitalists decide to stop sucking the economy dry and hoarding the nation's wealth. From now on, any politician of any party that says he is going to do something different and change our nation needs to have his feet held to the fire and be made to explain his plan to do that.