Why Not Cut Military Spending?


Writing in Politico, Chris Preble of the (right-wing extremist!) Cato Institute and Heather Hurlburt of the National Security Network debunk the bipartisan Washington consensus that military spending should always be off-limits to budget freezes. For a proposal so outside the Beltway mainstream, their action plan sounds pretty reasonable:

But ultimately, because our national security rests on our economic health as well as on the strength of our military, a liberal and a libertarian can agree that the Pentagon should no longer get a pass. Congress must stop funding projects to satisfy parochial domestic interests. The Pentagon must stop buying weapons systems that are already outdated, unworkable or both. And the administration must carefully define our vital security interests, reshape our grand strategy to more equitably distribute the burdens of policing the globe and reduce the occasions when our military will be called on to fight.

This one will be tougher to pull off…

For nearly two decades, Republicans and Democrats in Washington have deployed the U.S. military as a police force of first resort. Now is the time for a change.

We might also change the odd policy of not including war spending when calculating the federal budget deficit.