It's time for BIG cuts in our military

Discussion in 'Security & Defenses' started by Accountable, Feb 13, 2011.

  1. Mushroom

    Mushroom Well-Known Member

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    The military is already looking at deep troop cuts. The Army alone is looking at a reduction of over 50,000, almost 9% in the next 3 years. And all the other services are seeing similar numbers.

    I quit a good paying job to join the military, and like tens of thousands of others am looking at getting out next year in the middle of a horrible recession. And after spending 5 years outside of my profession, I know jobs are going to be hard to find.

    But nobody ever seems to think of that. They scream "cut the troops", then a year or so later scream "why can't veterans get jobs?"
     
  2. Slant Eyed Pirate

    Slant Eyed Pirate New Member

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    There is going to be demand for infrastructure rebuilding, upgrading. With USA cutting back on oil imports, there is a small chance for Green Energy development. Aerospace may also be hiring too.

    The fact that there were people who left good paying jobs to join the military, I would blame the propaganda from media and rightwingers who prop up the environment of fear in support for the War on Terror.
    Sorry soldiers, I guess you believed in the wrong crowd. Would it be below you to work in construction, picking fruits or even busting tables for a living?
     
  3. Mushroom

    Mushroom Well-Known Member

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    What a load of coprolite.

    Contrary to what you seem to think, the military is not full of idiots. And just like the American population, you will find an even mix, of around 40% Republican, 40% Democrat, and 20% independent and other in the ranks. And we all join and serve for a variety of reasons.

    Myself, I was hardly naive. I was 42 at the time, and had already served for 10 years in the 80's and early 90's. However, I also will not comment on the fact that just like last time, I find myself being laid off when a Democrat administration took over.

    And you are talking to somebody who has had a great number of jobs. Everything from DJ at a strip club, to security, theme park attendant, pawn broker, apartment manager, even acting and auto sales. But my career is computers. I have worked consistantly for over 30 years now, and will do what I can to make ends meet. So please do not talk down like that to me again, you obviously do not know me at all.

    Oh, and no, aerospace will not be hiring. A huge percentage of those jobs are dedicated to supplying things for the military. And when those projects are cut, they lay off, not hire.
     
  4. Slant Eyed Pirate

    Slant Eyed Pirate New Member

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    So what do most military people think about the War on Terror? Do they think Saddam was actually linked to Al Quaeda, or that he was planning on an attack on USA? Perhaps many military people actually thought the invasion of Iraq was going to pay for itself thru oil, and were willing to accept the Horrible Collateral damage to the Iraqi people and nation. I think too few people in USA know that American oil imports come mostly from Canada, Mexico and Saudi Arabia (in that order). In fact Saudi Arabia recently have been bumped from 3rd supplier of oil to becoming the 4th. Venezuela (Hugo Chavez) is 3rd largest supplier, last time I checked. So, a large percentage of US oil imports comes from the Western hemisphere.

    I can understand now why Americans prefer to import Oil, aside from the ability to export debt thru the current world reserve currency status, American leaders prefer to keep the mess of oil production in other nations. Just look at the big mess BP and Transocean created in the Gulf during April 2010.

    FYI, Im working in Aerospace right now. The company I work for is not only hiring, but expanding its facilities. And its not for military. True, I had to relocate far from family and a lot of people I know, but thats the reality of the current economy. I guess even in a recession, Billionaires need their private jets.
     
  5. Scare Bear

    Scare Bear New Member

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    No need to fire them just bring them home so they are spending any of their disposable income at local business in America rather than overseas. You also would not need to keep the expensive supply lines involved with overseas deployment. They could help secure the border or just train and remain ready for when they are needed. Any cuts should be to equipment procurement rather than personal for the reason you mentioned.

    Expensive high tech projects like the F-22 would be a good place to start. All designs should have cost effectiveness and quick mass production in mind. In WW2 the Sherman tank for example was not comparable to what the Germans had tech-wise but numbers won the day. I'm a fan of cost effective designs like the F-16 and A-10 (they are last gen and there is no real next gen equivalent of them but there should be. JSF is an overbudget mess.) because it's the training and support that makes the biggest difference anyway.
     
  6. bottle

    bottle New Member

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    We should cut the military budget by 50%. Develop a new generation of nukes and up the NASA budget by 50 billion.

    Pull out of overseas bases, thereby forcing our allies to pay more for their own defense. As long as we make it clear we are willing to protect our allies with nukes there will be no massive strategic changes world wide.

    Of course the military industrial complex would freak over such changes.
     
  7. IgnoranceisBliss

    IgnoranceisBliss Well-Known Member

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    So, completely destroy our ability to use soft power or prevent fullscale wars? Conventional power has many benefits.
     
  8. Mushroom

    Mushroom Well-Known Member

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    And where in the budget would you take those cuts?

    The largest segment, operations and maintenance? This covers everything from training, fuel, and the upkeep and repair of everything from trucks to buildings.

    Or the second biggest, Personnel? That is where the military gets paid, and things like education benefits, dependent medical care, and the rest?

    Then there is the next item, Procurement. This is #3 in the budget, and covers things like new equipment. This is also less then 1/4 of those other expenses.

    And then you go down the list, Construction, Housing, Dependent Schools, and the like, you see that "weapons" is around 1/6 of the military budget. So your idea of cutting the budget in half is totally unrealistic.
     
  9. hiimjered

    hiimjered Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    The military is already planning base cuts of about 20-25% over the next 3-5 years. We won't be able to cut much more without the politicians making significant reductions to our mission requirements. Instead they are expanding overseas commitments. They are looking at expanding our presence in Africa. They are expanding our presence in Australia.

    Something has to give. They either need to stop cutting our budget or stop expanding our mission. They can't have it both ways.
     
  10. bottle

    bottle New Member

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    Cut the carriers to no more than 5. Make the USMC more similar to the RMC.

    This would mean we get rid of the air arm of the the USMC. Less carriers means less aircraft for the navy.

    Cut the SSN force to 20 and build 20 SSKs.

    Keep SSBN force at 12.

    Close all overseas bases and put troops on boarder.

    Get rid of army fixed wing assets and amphib units.


    Cut DOD schools and PX/BXs.


    The list is endless.


    As long as we have nukes we are safe from large scale attacks.

    Sorry, but when it comes to national defense the republicans have always failed since the end of the civil war.
     
  11. bottle

    bottle New Member

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    Very true.
     
  12. Mushroom

    Mushroom Well-Known Member

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    This makes no sense at all. Cut our only long range projection in half? I don't think so.

    And what do you mean about the Marines?

    In other words, remove all air support for Marines. And leave them sitting ducks in case they were needed.

    I guess you like seeing dead servicemembers.

    OK, good one here. One huge advantage of the SSN is that it is nuclear, so does not need to take on fuel when out at sea, just replacement parts and food.

    And you are going to replace these with diesel boats? Congratulations, you have just increased operating costs, because now you have to build oilers and more support vessels to keep these running.

    We only have 18 SSBN class subs. So you want to scrub 6 of them. Wow, huge savings. You just saved $300 million. That's it, because these only cost $50 million a year to operate.

    And of these 18 SSBNs, only 14 are left in their original configuration. The other 4 are actually now SSGMN (Sub-Surface Guided Missile Nuclear).

    So this begs the question, which do you cut? The GM models? All BNs? 2 of each?

    We can't. And we can't.

    Our bases overseas are there because of long term treaties and obligations.

    And we can't put our military on the border. That is because of this US law known as posse comitatus. I suggest you look it up.

    Uh-huh. And are you aware of how many "Amphibious Units" the US army has? Look it up please, and tell me what you find out.

    And how many fixed wing aircraft does the Army have? I can tell you, 179. That's it. And almost all are small prop driven cargo and transport aircraft that operate between army bases overseas. They are also used as air ambulances.

    So instead of having organic aircraft, you are going to create another organization and detachments in the Air Force to support these operations? Congratulations, you have increased costs again.

    Oh, this is a good one. You are going to close the schools that our children go to. And you go on about Republicans not understanding things. Let's propose this to a few people in the Democratic Party, and let's see how they embrace this idea.

    And BX/PXs, this is great. You are aware that they actually turn a profit, are you not? These do not cost the taxpayers anything. And in fact, their profit is turned right back around and invested back into the welfare and recreation programs on military bases.

    So once again, you just raised costs. You removed one of the few government programs that shows a profit, and then cost even more money, because the government must now pay an additional 70% of the MWR budget that is currently paid for by the PX system.

    Congratulations, you have done more to increase defense spending then the last 5 presidents combined. And also at the same time lowered capabilities, increased the danger to those that serve, and left thousands of children without education.

    Aren't you proud of yourself?
     
  13. Giftedone

    Giftedone Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    These are not happy times, and the choices needed are not happy ones.

    How much pride is there in sacrificing long term security for short term bragging rites ?

    Our global committments and operations must be scaled back, not because it is a good thing, but because there is no other reasonable choice.

    Military expenditures and national security expenditures have increased from 300 Billion to 800 Billion since 2000. Counting other stuff such as 60 billion for "international affairs" and other stuff brings the total to over 900 Billion.

    This is a 500 to 600 billion increase in spending. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Military_budget_of_the_United_States

    Now factor in a decrease in revenue from 2.7 Trillion to 2.15 Trillion since 2008 = 550 billion.

    Combine the two and you have a 1.15 Trillion in deficit spending. This accounts for a large percentage of the 1.5 Trillion dollar deficit for 2011.

    We can not survive long with income of 2.1 T and spending of 3.6 T.
    This is not rocket science and almost no one disagree's that this spending in excess of income is unsustainable.

    We are very lucky right now that we can finance this massive deficit spending at ultra low interest rates (2-3%). Total interest on our 15 T debt is only about 400 Billion per year right now.

    Hopefully you are running numbers at this point and have figured out that if we take in 2.15 T and have 0.4 T in interest payments that only leaves (1.75 T) in actual money we have to spend.

    1.75 T in real revenue and we spend 900 Billion (conservatively) on Military and national security.

    Italy is now having to pay 8% on its 3 yr bonds. These are bonds that sold for 5% a month ago.

    If US yeilds were to rise 3% interest payments would skyrocket in a few short years by another 400 Billion.

    Throw in the threat of a recession = more revenue decline .. and pretty much 100% of income will be going to military and national security.

    It is not a matter of wanting to make these cuts, not just military but all over the place. This fiscal nightmare could jeopardize the long term security of the country.

    All this talk of defending our interests by maintaining current spending is nonsense. Our interest is best defended in not going bankrupt in the name of trying to defend our interests.
     
  14. big daryle

    big daryle New Member

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    Dudeman needs to realize that the military is a huge unemployment program, without it our unemplyment rate would be around 20 percent.
     
  15. IgnoranceisBliss

    IgnoranceisBliss Well-Known Member

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    U.S. T-bills are near record lows right now. European debt fears and high yield spreads between the various European nations have pushed people into U.S. treasuries. You can't compare U.S. T-bills to Italian debt. That country doesn't have the ability to "make money" or the financial health that the U.S. has (as perilous as it may seem). You'll notice that Moody's credit reduction had almost no affect on the market.
     
  16. IgnoranceisBliss

    IgnoranceisBliss Well-Known Member

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    How is it an unemployment program? Could you please explain. Also, there are approximately 1.5 million active service members right now, or 1/2 a percent of the entire U.S. population. We'll call it an even 1 percent of the U.S. working population. When you add in contractors and some of the defense industries (many sell overseas) you could probably add another 1/2 percent. So how do you LEAP to that 20% figure?
     
  17. Mushroom

    Mushroom Well-Known Member

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    You are very right. And a lot of what you say I would not dispute at all.

    However, it is not military spending that is bankrupting the nation, it is entitlement spending. Because at least military spending employs millions of people, and actually returns benefits.

    Military spending only takes up 20% of the budget. That is not nothing, but it is nowhere near where most of our money goes. The largest chunk by far god to Entitlement Programs, most specifically SSI, Medicare and Medicaid. This amounts to 43% of the budget.

    And when you look at any projected budget figures, military spending is decreasing. However, entitlement spending is increasing by more then the military is decreased.

    You can cut the military budget to $0, and the US will still be loosing money. And I will take consideration into Defense Department cuts much more seriously, if we also hear how the politicians will solve the real crisis, entitlement spending.
     
  18. Mushroom

    Mushroom Well-Known Member

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    I think he means "EMPLOYMENT PROGRAM".

    And I easuly understand what he means. Look outside almost any major military base. The surrounding communities are often almost totally locked into the military. For example, take Jacksonville, North Carolina.

    I lived there for 4 years, because it is right outside of Camp Lejeune. And when the deployments started for the 1990 Gulf War, most of the camp was sent overseas. And within a few months, businesses in Jacksonville started to close.

    With almost half of the local population gone, there was an immediate downturn in business. This resulted in huge unemployment in the area, since the base was the major industry in the region. And this is true almost everywhere that there is a base, from El Paso and San Diego to Oceanside and Fayetteville.

    I agree, that the population would soar, not only because of the direct layoffs, but the secondary and other waves. No more military means apartments are now vacant, so landlords can't make their loan payments. Everything from fast food and car lots to shopping malls and bars just lost the majority of their customers. It is a tidal wave effect, that may spread even more.

    The Army alone is looking at a total troop cut now of over 140,000 in the next year. This is triple the number our President said he would cut just a year ago. And the proposed numbers pushed down to the Navy mean that we may loose 2 carrier groups because of the lack of manpower. The proposed total cuts I most recently saw are around 220,000. Almost a quarter million more people thrown into the unemployment ranks.

    Where veteran unemployment is already running at almost double the national average.
     
  19. Giftedone

    Giftedone Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    I agree IB. I was painting a rather grim senario based on what could happen in the future if we do not act today.

    One thing we can count on for the next couple of years is low interest rates.
    The reason for this is that the Fed will not allow them to go higher by printing money to buy our own debt.

    This will have an effect on the dollar over the long term (inflation and dollar devaluation) so printing money is not a long term fix but it does buy us some time and actually helps with the debt because of devalued dollars.

    Italy does not have the luxury of printing money so they are at the whim of investors.

    The risk is that some of the PIIGS will likely default in the near future. The US can not default because they can print money.

    The risk to the US is if they continue to print money while maintaining large deficits sole reserve currency status will be lost. Substitutes will crop up.

    If the US loses this status our long term security is affected. We will then no longer be able to print money without risking high inflation rates and dollar devaluation.

    The bottom line of my argument does not change. We have to decrease our deficit in order to maintain our status and way of life.

    To decrease the deficit either spending has to be cut, taxes have to be raised, or the economy needs to pick up in a big way.

    Raising taxes will impact the economy so it is a bit of a catch 22. Spending cuts also reduce GDP.

    We can not continue to spend in excess of 900 billion on military and national security on an income of 1750 billion.
     
  20. Giftedone

    Giftedone Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    I agree that entitlements are a problem as well, and a large part of total spending. Keep in mind that entitlements are partially funded by the employee and partially by the state so the spend is not 43% of federal income after paying the interest which is the main number we should be looking at.

    Of the total budget = post interest Income + Interest + Deficit = 3.6 Trillion.

    900 billion on military and national security spending is about 25% of the total budget. Of our real post interest income of 1750 billion it is greater than 50%.

    I do not suggest cutting 50% out of the military budget or entitlements overnight althought cuts need to be made to both. In addition I do not think we can raise taxes but we should close some of the major corporate loopholes which would raise a large amount of money.

    Nor do I think the deficit needs to be reduced to zero overnight.

    What I do think we could is reduce drug war spending (80% of which is for pot) 54 billion (fed and state) and tax the stuff creating billions in revenue.

    64 Billion on international affairs ? The entire federal spending of Canada (income - interest) is about 160 Billion. Does our international affairs department require 40% of the money it takes to run the entire country of Canada ??

    Homeland security - 47 Billion - Leave it to the FBI and CIA .. this is a rediculous amount of money. (Transfer 5 billion in extra money to these two organizations and reduce the deficit by 42 B) I doubt very much if we will be any safer spending an extra 42 Billion.

    What will make us safer is to quit trying to police Muslim nations and let them kill each other like they used to. All we have done is given these extremists an enemy to rally the masses against (namely US).

    War spending = 200 Billion

    Leaving 4 billion each for drug war and international affairs = 110 Billion saved
    Homeland security = 42 Billion
    War spending cut by 75% = 150 Billion

    Notice no military personnel cuts so far.

    300 billion a year saved = 3 Trillion over 10 years. Double what this silly super committee is supposed to come up with and I have not even started yet.

    Wage and hiring freezes to the civil service (god forbid we have layoffs or wage reductions to the 120 K a year average- wage and benefits)

    Raising the retirement age 5 years.

    Close a few of the most agregious corp loopholes.

    Now we are starting to get where we need to be.
     
  21. NavyIC1

    NavyIC1 New Member

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    The duty station I was at in Italy (LaMaddelena, Sardinia), was closed about three years ago and the Submarine Tender was sent back to the United States for good. It is about time that we close most of our overseas bases and draw down our military. DO we really need to spend $650 Billion a year on our military? Now, because of the wars we have been fighting off and on for over 20+ years, we have veterans inflicted with PTSD and chronic depression (I am one of them). Most come back and have problems adjusting to life back in the U.S. because the military still lacks the capability to properly stand troops down. I have been out for over 10 years and I can't watch a Navy commerical with out breaking down into tears. The DOD needs to develop programs that will re-socialize military service members back into society.
     
  22. Slant Eyed Pirate

    Slant Eyed Pirate New Member

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    I suspect America's secret services had heavy involvement in causing conflict and division among the Muslims, within China, Latin America and god knows where else. Conflict and war is good for the American defence manufacturing complex. USA is one of the largest supplier of Weapons is not the largest. From supplying Israelis, to Taiwan, to the Saudis its possibly an industry with Hundreds of Billions $ in profit annually. I'm talking about Lockheed Martin, Northrup Grumman, Boeing, United Technologies, GE, GRumman etc. etc...
    With big money comes influence on the political process. Around and around it goes, keeping these big businesses in business.

     
  23. HillBilly

    HillBilly New Member Past Donor

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    .hey guys , I know y'all are real serious on this thread , and I wanted to ask you if we actually have this capability ? enjoy and have a good time with it . :)


    . . [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l0ZeQaoo9Ng"]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l0ZeQaoo9Ng[/ame]
     
  24. Mushroom

    Mushroom Well-Known Member

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    Nice use of computer visual effects.
     
  25. Slant Eyed Pirate

    Slant Eyed Pirate New Member

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    One thing i don't understand is, the entitlement programs you mention, are funded by tax payers. Everytime I look at my paycheck there are deductions for SSI, Medicare, Medicaid. How is it that people are paying 25%-33% income tax, paying into these Entitlement programs, paying State Tax, Real Estate Tax, Sales Tax, Tobacco Tax, Fishing/Hunting Licenses etc... etc..., and still this Gov't can't manage to get its financials out of the hole, and telling the American people that their so called Entitlement Programs, which we Paid For over the years, is becoming Insolvent????

    Meanwhile, Apple Corp has over $100 Billion stashed away, defence Contracting Companies are still making money, and CEO's continue to get their Multi-Million $ Bonuses.
     

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