Sunday, June 12, 2016

GOP Is Out-Of Step With Country On Military Spending

The United States spends around 45% of the military spending for the entire world -- more than the next 10-14 largest military spending countries combined. In fact, the United States could cut its military spending in half, and still be spending more than any other country (friend or foe). In addition, the military spending of the U.S. eats up more than half of the country's discretionary budget (the budget paid for with income and other taxes (Social Security and most of Medicare are paid for by a special payroll tax dedicated only for those purposes, and are not paid for from income or other taxes).

This huge bloated military budget does not go straight to support our soldiers and their families. The bulk of it goes to support the military-industrial complex (including weapons and system that don't work, or that our military leaders have said they don't need or want). It also goes to support over 800 to 900 military bases we keep around the world -- far more than is needed for self-defense.

Any reasonable person would admit that we are either spending too much on our military, or at least don't need to spend any more on it -- and that is the opinion of most Americans. Only 35% of Americans think we should increase military spending (including 31% of Independents, 25% of moderate Democrats, and 12% of liberal Democrats). A majority of those groups think we are already spending enough (or too much).

But the Republicans (and their officials) want to increase military spending. About 61% of Republicans (including 45% of moderate Republicans and 67% of conservative Republicans) want to spend more on the military -- and that includes their presidential candidate (Donald Trump) and their other elected officials.

They also want to cut taxes for the rich and the corporations. So, where is the money for this extra military spending going to come from? It's going to come from cuts to all other government programs (education, food stamps, environment, housing aid, agriculture, unemployment, and all the other programs that help Americans to better themselves and this country). They also want to cut Social Security benefits and raise the retirement age -- although that's just out of being mean (since cutting it would provide no more money for the general budget and more military spending).

We can't afford to further cut our spending on programs that actually help Americans. We can't afford more tax cuts for the rich and the corporations. And we certainly don't need to pump more of our hard-earned money into military spending. That's why it is imperative to vote the Republicans out of power in November.

The chart above was made with information from a recent Pew Research Center survey -- done between April 12th and 19th of a random national sample of 2,008 adults, with a 2.5 point margin of error.

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