E. Field: Pork in the military budget

The over-deployed and over-stressed members of the U.S. military absolutely deserve the public's respect and funding for decent salaries, benefits and good medical and psychiatric care. The country needs a strong military; however, there is a ridiculous amount of waste and unnecessary spending in the military budget:

— The average salary of the top five defense contracting CEOs last year was $21.5 million, paid, in large part, by taxpayers.

— There are737 military bases around the world. Why? There are enough problems here without policing the entire world.

— There are 963 generals and admirals in the U.S. Armed Forces, about 100 more than before 9/11. A New York Times study showed that the cost for the staff provided to top generals and admirals can exceed $1 million per general.

— Republican Sen. Tom Coburn commissioned a report that found $67.9 billion waste in the defense budget over the next decade.

— Many Pentagon programs are 30 years out-of-date but are not cancelled because someone profits from them.

— The GOP’s so-called “Spending Reduction Act” fails to cut even one penny in military spending.

Since billions of dollars in waste could be cut from the bloated military budget, why are politicians trying to cut vital programs such as Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid?

More than $1 trillion has been cut from schools, medical research, public safety and Head Start already. It is way past time for the Pentagon to share the burden.

Ellen Field, New Gloucester

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Comments

 's picture

"... why are politicians trying to cut vital programs ..."

SO THEY CAN SCARE US into believing they are benevolent and are looking out for us so they can pass even more legislation that is pork filled while stripping us of our individual freedoms!!!!

The military budget is not the only piece of legislation that is pork filled!! EVERY single piece of legislation is!! If you believe for one second that the pork needs to be trimmed out of the military budget but DIDN'T say one word about the Obamacare Act being OVERFLOWING with pork, then you are acting hypocritical and exampling selective memory!!

RONALD RIML's picture

The U.S. spends more on it's 'Military Budget'

Than do the next 17 largest spending countries combined.


PAUL ST JEAN's picture

"Many Pentagon programs are

"Many Pentagon programs are 30 years out-of-date but are not canceled because someone profits from them."

The war on poverty is 50 years old. The war on drugs is 25-30 years old. How are we doing on winning the battles on those two bottomless money pits?

 's picture

The big government advocates ...

... always mix federal and state spending. Obama did it last week when he read (from his teleprompter) the long laundry list of people and institutions who will be hurt if that mean old sequester takes effect. Of course, he didn't mention that it was his idea in the first place and that he could have vetoed it but didn't.

What he also didn't mention is that the "cuts" in the sequester are, as usual, just reductions in projected increases. If they all go into effect, we'll still spend more money this year than last - and the grand total is a rounding error in the federal budget. If we had one.

I know you only want to talk about the military budget, but consider the Department of Education. Its 2012 budget, and 2013 request, is almost equivalent to the waste you claimed to find in defense over ten years. What does this department do? It takes federal money, extracted from the states by our ridiculous tax code, and sends it .. drumroll .. back to the states!

But lots of money sticks to the sides of this sewer pipe, and what's left gets back to us with many federal strings attached. We would all be better served if the money stayed here in the first place.

Education .. Energy .. Homeland Security. The list of sinkholes seems endless, and I haven't yet mentioned the biggest sinkhole of all, entitlements. Leave the military alone. At least they're trying to protect you and to preserve your right to whine.

RONALD RIML's picture

Protect your 'Right to Whine?'

Poor LeBlanc has no idea of how Govt works....

The Battle for Freedom of Speech is fought for in the Courts - not in the Pentagon, nor the plains of Afghanistan......

But Mike has his political agenda - and truth isn't on it.

Jim Cyr's picture

Mr.LeBlanc does have a good idea

as to how the Govt. works. You see, the Federal Govt.'s priority IS Defense and surely not 48 million on welfare who are certainly not contributing to "The welfare and Prosperity" of U.S.

RONALD RIML's picture

Defense IS the biggest Welfare Racket (Top 50 only)

up to 2007 Total Purchases: $306,521,269,483

Total - Airforce - Army - Navy

1 Lockheed Martin Corp. $27,320,616,068 $13,134,039,297 $4,129,352,342 $9,368,161,063
2 Boeing Co. 20,861,418,122 9,066,016,130 4,571,754,905 5,047,577,486
3 Northrop Grumman Corp. 16,769,641,721 5,110,601,398 2,454,516,560 8,139,800,079
4 General Dynamics Corp. 11,472,032,565 1,306,539,430 4,178,832,658 5,607,399,925
5 Raytheon Co. 10,411,293,336 1,861,980,384 2,250,611,542 5,547,799,241
6 KBR Inc. 5,972,078,973 0 5,693,999,082 270,662,569
7 L-3 Communications Holdings 5,039,851,151 1,922,097,745 1,512,700,751 1,011,024,771
8 United Technologies Corp. 4,574,841,469 1,227,324,078 1,618,790,889 1,493,978,236
9 BAE Systems 4,500,683,822 526,713,704 2,261,164,463 1,442,005,662
10 SAIC 3,404,387,190 509,527,954 875,278,063 716,322,496
11 General Electric Co. 2,933,412,010 632,218,381 596,203,331 1,376,268,774
12 Computer Sciences Corp. 2,763,028,827 1,007,897,033 680,582,650 572,913,789
13 Humana Inc. 2,632,567,928 5,307,240 1,087,594 85,000
14 Health Net Inc. 2,117,988,171 0 4,526,377 4,643,350
15 Triwest Healthcare Alliance Co. 2,021,460,650 2,013,223 1,313,219 7,020,176
16 EDS 1,957,942,074 31,214,856 18,512,664 1,799,114,769
17 Public Warehousing Co. KSC 1,837,917,361 0 140,434,810 0
18 ITT Industries 1,746,012,846 484,769,341 976,503,612 241,681,233
19 Textron Inc. 1,664,145,663 169,260,487 225,767,067 1,188,021,529
20 Honeywell Inc. 1,543,035,227 387,446,249 759,510,076 249,176,295
21 URS Corp. 1,465,800,000 601,741,774 621,897,696 212,857,192
22 Harris Corp. 1,346,616,026 110,141,012 468,627,673 676,265,650
23 AmerisourceBergen Corp. 1,344,761,612 0 0 1,288
24 Bechtel Group Inc. 1,307,690,449 0 312,622,539 964,204,924
25 FedEx Corp. 1,303,465,737 1,284,698,867 14,368,354 2,658,837
26 Alliant Techsystems Inc. 1,267,797,253 85,426,118 971,762,003 192,622,772
27 Booz Allen Hamilton Inc. 1,224,531,249 524,921,686 257,170,714 246,193,105
28 BP PLC 1,203,217,981 0 3,729,640 32,111
29 DRS Technologies Inc. 1,185,658,022 81,175,951 962,416,781 85,624,521
30 Exxon Mobil Corp. 1,176,892,159 0 251,235 1,489,165
31 Kuwait National Petroleum Co. 1,011,270,194 0 0 0
32 The Alliance Contractor Team 999,318,445 999,318,445 0 0
33 Renco Corp. 972,676,152 972,676,152 89,885 935,117,487 1,913,445
34 MacAndrews & Forbes Holdings 972,117,642 4,365 935,111,132 1,446,810
35 Environmental Chemical Corp. 948,215,011 387,473,565 545,861,024 14,880,421
36 Oshkosh Truck Corp. 947,223,894 401,714 448,255,027 420,038,079
37 Royal Dutch Petroleum Co. 893,692,189 0 15,730 0
38 Stewart & Stevenson Services 833,870,152 4,000 807,596,045 11,769,830
39 Armor Holdings Inc. 813,943,876 1,605,019 663,614,661 74,130,789
40 General Motors Corp. 806,377,723 725,047 789,125,154 1,961,628
41 Grindex Pumps A B Sweden 764,507,562 0 764,312,692 15,730
42 Korea Agricultural Cooperative 762,328,685 0 0 0
43 CACI International Inc. 739,217,940 40,870,058 340,337,556 261,203,988
44 Johns Hopkins University 706,783,317 17,621,365 12,714,717 450,374,638
45 General Atomics Technology Corp. 676,008,667 355,576,201 210,810,567 100,242,508
46 Rockwell Collins 674,510,268 395,476,148 84,365,191 147,655,765
47 McKesson Corp. 670,352,054 173,133 3,218,356 412,991
48 Valero Energy Corp. 661,171,541 0 0 0
49 Aerospace Corp. 653,969,926 653,969,926 0 0
50 MITRE Corp. 652,276,956 295,067,281 357,209,675 0

MARK GRAVEL's picture

From my observation, there is

From my observation, there is much waste in all corners of federal, state and local governments.

“More than $1 trillion has been cut from schools, medical research, public safety and Head Start already.” I don’t know where you are getting your figures, but the above statement is not reflected in historical budget data.

Moreover, you are mixing federal and state spending when you talk about the military on the one hand and schools on the other hand. Anyhow, historical federal spending does not reflect your assertion.

RONALD RIML's picture

Over $27 Trillion just to the Rat-Hole that is Lockheed.....

Almost twice our National Debt.......




And all our other 'Buddies'.......


MARK GRAVEL's picture

I'm okay with cutting

I'm okay with cutting Military spending, along with pensions for retired service members, law enforcement, and fire....etc...
Cut it all.

 's picture

that includes ...

all the pensions, Secret Service detachments, medical benefits, etc. for retired politicians, too, right? Considering those are currently lifetime perks, and we are paying them out to not only former Presidents but Congressmen/women, too, we realize a windfall in savings if we cut those provisions, too!!

 's picture

and, for the record, ...

I'm NOT in favor of cutting ANY pensions or benefits to our military personnel. At least THEY deserve it, as opposed to most of the former politicians sucking off the teet of taxpayer funds LONG after their public service.

RONALD RIML's picture

And then we're all coming over to your (our) house to live.....

And my, what appetites we have......

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