The United States’ debt is over 14 trillion dollars and the government is operating at a 1.171 trillion dollar deficit. The conservatives just took control of the US House of representatives, which initiates all tax legislation, and they are demanding that the national debt be brought under control. What is their solution? They don’t have one. Economics 101: In order to lower the size of your debt, you need to either cut back on spending, or raise taxes. The conservatives refuse to do either. Instead they think giving a tax break to the richest people in the country will magically lower the deficit.
When it comes to cutting government spending, there is one area that is off limits; it is the sacred cow for conservatives: the military. They will cut anything else, usually education, but suggesting that the military be cut is akin to burning a bible wrapped in a flag.
Do you know how much the US spends on defense in 2010? $1.03 Trillion We spend more on war than any other part of our budget. We spend more on war than any other country on the planet. We spend more on war than the next 10+ runners up COMBINED. Despite this jaw-dropping expenditure, cutting it is off limits because it gives conservatives a massive hard-on. Nothing gets them more turned on than the idea of steamrolling darker skinned non-christian foreigners in the desert. In America, a nation drunk on war and the military industrial complex, suggesting the military be cut is unpatriotic.
We don’t need military bases all over the world. We don’t need to spend 1.03 trillion dollars on keeping the largest military force in the world. What conservatives fail to understand is that the world has changed since Reagan. The United States military, in it’s current form, initially grew to fight the Nazis and the Japanese. After WWII the next threat was the Soviet Empire. The weapons and tactics evolved, but the military was still designed to fight WWIII with the Russians. Newsflash: The USSR fell, it’s not a military threat anymore.
Now that the Soviets are gone we have this massive sledge hammer of a military, and nobody that can match us. There is no need to keep it this massive. Who are we fighting? Radical Islam. I’m not sure if you’ve noticed, but the insurgents in Iraq and Afghanistan don’t drive around in armored convoys, they don’t have military bases, they don’t wear uniforms. They’re a bunch of guerrilla fighters with sandals and AK-47′s. Our gigantic military was built to fight pitch battles against similarly equipped armies, we’ve struggled to adapt to the more delicate job of building nations.
“What about China?” Good question. Here is another thing conservatives don’t understand has changed. Back in the old days wars were fought with armies and a nation’s greatness was measured in how many miles of land it owned. That is no longer how wars are going to be waged, and China gets that. China has no interest in getting involved with us militarily. It would be a lose-lose scenario, and it’s not good for business. That’s the key word there: business. China understands that future wars will be economic ones, and right now they’re winning. They’re winning big. Meanwhile we spend a trillion dollars fighting yesterday’s war, concerned only about where we can erect more phallic statues to our ego.
The threat of our nuclear arsenal and a small, nimble, technologically superior military that can strike at will is all we need to keep our interests safe. We can compete with the Chinese if we cut the military, end them from being our creditors, and then invest the money back into education. We can do it, but we won’t. Conservatives will only realize the trillions spent on defense are worthless when Asia crushes us economically, our education system collapses, and our prison systems are unable to handle the influx of new inmates. (Even then when they do realize their mistake, they won’t admit it. They’ll just blame it on gays, feminists, and not having enough god in the government)