AskUs: Is U.S.’ lavish military spending really necessary?

May 26, 2016
12
Comments (12)
  1. Gingus says:

    I can tell which side of the coin you support, that makes me sad, I wanted the facts not some of the facts and your opinion. Please address as this is a new and consistent problem with the Askus section.

    1. Cam says:

      I can now tell which side of the coin you support. I believe the author is allowed to express their opinion since this is their site/article. If you want it done differently, go look it all up yourself. Do go around demanding they redo it because you don’t like the “opinion” they expressed.

    2. Nole says:

      but he did provide facts though? did you not like the facts? You can do your own research and see the same thing.

      1. Gingus says:

        He provided a one-sided view of some facts, which I could have got out of Fox news. The truth is European countries have dealt with many of the problems mentioned in this article and although their spending has been considered both too high and too low by different political factions they have consistently provided their citizens with a high enough level of protection for them to feel equally as safe as Americans seem to feel, suggesting that any spending in excess (per capita) is unnecessary. My personal view is that none of the western defensive (or more aptly offensive) strategies will protect our citizens from ‘dishonourable’ combat such as dirty bombs. The sovereignty of each and every nation is at risk, not just from each other but from mere ideas such as religions, philosophies and global nations. In essence I wanted an objective/impartial report of the facts and that’s not what was delivered. I do my own research but its difficult to find unjaded accounts of facts and I have found this website is generally objective and avoids opinions. I was trying to be both constructive and critical, not divisive, sorry if I have caused offense in anyway. It wasn’t a call to revamp the article just a request for less subjective articles in future. I don’t understand why people believe I didn’t research this as deeply (if not deeper judging by the facts presented) as the author, and I denounce any person who can make an uninformed decision on another’s research abilities.

  2. Ivan says:

    There’s a couple of things you omitted from this article. Cost of living is a problem that China doesn’t have, but Europe does so it doesn’t quite explain our military expense being so much bigger than theirs. Also, having a big ocean between us and them is not meaningless. China has one may be two aircraft carriers so the only way for them to attack us is through ICBM and long range bombers. We are the most prolific users of bombs and even us are not that good at taking out the enemy with bombs alone. In contrast, Europe has no ocean, so if anything they should have a bigger budget than us, which they don’t.
    Then there’s the issue of waste. The military doesn’t want more tanks(we have way too many), F22’s (150 million a plane), and cargo planes. The military has no use for them or budget to store them and maintain them, so they have to send good planes to boneyard because congress wants to buy more. Why does congress want to buy more? Because it brings job to their district and manufacturers provide money for their campaign. None of those are national security issues.
    You mentioned end of year spending, that just barely scratches the surface. There’s also field loss, when a unit comes back they encourage their members to field loss everything they can so you end up with soldiers selling $200 sleeping bags to surplus stores and then claiming a field loss so they get a new one. The unit either has an open check or their check is so big that it doesn’t matter how much they spend. I saw a unit that came back with a benchstock that was too big to have in garrison, they should have sent their extra benchstock to their upper unit, but no one wanted to inventory everything, so they simply got rid of it. How did they get rid of hundreds of thousands of extra inventory? They took it home and sold it on ebay or simply kept it. I could fill a whole article about military spending abuse and waste. Somehow you failed to omit all of it.

    1. Cam says:

      Were their facts accurate or inaccurate? Make your own site if you’re going to complain about depth of the facts. You compalin they “barely scratched the surface.” You say you can write your own article about military spending… Go ahead. I’m guessing you’re in the military. Well you’re discussing processes that units do on a company and platoon level. Why would the author know about these insignificant “field losses?” In addition, whatever unit you came from, clearly has no integrity. That isn’t a military wide practice to claim field losses on items they want to keep or sell.

      Discussing the sending good planes to the boneyard so that congress can buy more has more to do with future fights than earning votes. The a10 was built in the late 70s. Although a great CAS platform, it won’t be able to stand up well against current IADS systems from our peer and near peer adversaries. That’s why the are going to a multi role fighter with advanced technologies. Many planes in the AIR FORCE and navy arsenal are old and out dated. You clearly have a small aperture on the grand scheme of things.

      1. Ivan says:

        If field losses was a practice that only one platoon or company did, then yes it would be insignificant, but this is something battalions do. I’ve hear the same thing happening on different battalions from different states (military people move around) so it’s not insignificant at all. Also, I’m not the one that says we have too many planes or tanks, it’s what the top defense generals say. Here’s the weird thing about that though, military is bias towards getting more money for military spending and if they are the ones that are against getting more of a specific equipment then it really is pretty bad.
        As far as the age of the planes, that’s not an accurate gauge for the capabilities of a plane. For example, the B52 bomber is more than 50 years old, but that’s just talking about the basic airframe design. Everything else has been upgraded(engines, armament, avionics) and can do what any newer design could do, but cheaper. It would make no sense to spend on making a new design.

        Also, I thought the facts in the article were good and accurate. My only problem with said article is that it only displayed one side of the facts, which then makes it a bit inaccurate. Obviously, whoever wrote it spent a great deal of time gathering the information to write the article.

  3. Matt says:

    My problem with military spending is we feel the complusive addiction to put soldiers in every conflict in the world that america approves of or feels guilty of and that moneyc could be spent better making college cheaper and better funding poor schools instead we piss it away tossing men and women to their deaths because some big shot got pissed about anpther persons problem

    1. Valannin says:

      My problem is run-on sentences, which, perhaps fittingly, serve to underscore your complaints about the American educational system.

      1. Gingus says:

        I must say, that was brilliant.

  4. Jerry says:

    2 things:
    1) I’m a North American but not a ‘Murican so maybe I didn’t read as closely as others. I didn’t think the article was that unbalanced (at least not Fox News unbalanced… Re-read the part on Obama!). A big point is just how much is spent on salaries and procurement using US or first world contractors. Does your neighbor work for cheap? I know a few folks in passing that worked or have worked for defense contractors and they pay well. And I worked for a company that supplies machinery and engines to all types of businesses including first world militaries. They don’t generally buy crap.

    2) The “blow it or it’s gone” mentality is everywhere. Every company I have worked for save one (we don’t need budgets!) has had a “use it or lose it next year” policy on budgets. I’ve never seen so much crap ordered from Staples in my life as the end of the budget year.

  5. Jerry says:

    Oh, and as a now private business owner, the government teaches me to “use it or lose it” and buy stuff at the end of the calendar year to reduce my taxes. Why not buy a new iPhone on the company dime instead of paying 40% of that amount in tax?

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