Tuesday, August 24, 2010

In Defense of the United States of America

Today, I plan on being much more adept at combining seemingly incongruous stories together to make brilliant, overarching points… this time about the fate of our defense department.

Yesterday was a fluke, but I’m back on par and raring to go. Right after this one deviation, that is:

My idiot state has named a school after the WEPotUS (Worst Ever President of the United States). So please excuse me while I go bang my head into a wall for a few minutes...

And we’re back. So let’s get right down to the recently proposed defense budget cuts.

Now, I understand that there isn’t a single area of our government that doesn’t need to be trimmed, both in terms of expenses and power.

When it comes to our military, it’s ridiculous that we have our reach in so many different countries, not to mention that with so many bureaucrats in its upper ranks, it has become far more convoluted than it needs to be. Not to mention the political shenanigans involved in most Congressional decisions concerning military spending.

However, Defense Secretary Robert Gates’ suggestion to cut costs has me wary all the same. While I am quite sure that he’s more knowledgeable on the subject than I am, knowledge doesn’t always equate to wisdom and I can’t help but be concerned as certain parts of our military face the chopping block.

The Defense Budget and What Really Needs to Be Scrapped

On the one hand, Gates correctly points out that his department “must be mindful of the difficult economic and fiscal situation facing our nation.”

However, I’m wary of an administration that is growing government by leaps and bounds except in the matter of defense.

One of the potential cuts involves the U.S. Second Fleet, which trains and certifies all strike groups before deployment. And as retired Navy Captain Joe Bouchard points out, the Pentagon’s civilian bureaucrats might not have the firmest grasp on what that decision really means:

“We don’t even want to think about the degradation of the combat readiness of those forces either to deploy overseas or to carry out their homeland defense role.”

Considering the particular issues we’re facing both here – such as in the recent kidnapping case of an 18-year old girl along the Mexican border – and abroad – nuclear Iran, anybody? – I’m inclined to agree with him.

If we’re so interested in cutting budgets, I personally think that House minority leader John Boehner has it right: We should fire Timothy Geithner and other insipid individuals on the presidential economic team.

I would take it a step further, however, in saying not to bother filling those positions with anybody else. Because I don’t see how we could be much worse off in the end.

If anything, it would be a major improvement… and we’d save a few hundred thousand dollars in the process.

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