The May 8 front page headline, “GOP plan boosts Pentagon, cuts social programs,” clearly illuminated one of the major reasons that our Congress will not reduce spending. Both sides protect their holy grails. Democrats are willing to cut military spending, but refuse to touch any social programs. Republicans are willing to cut social programs, but refuse to touch any military spending.
As a Republican, I would suggest that we take the proactive first step and reduce military spending in such a way that our national defense will be bolstered, not reduced. Conservatives like to point out that more education spending does not necessarily bring better education. Likewise, more military spending does not necessarily give us higher national security.
Rather than trying to be all things to all people all over the world, our military should do a few things well. We no longer need to protect Germany and Japan from the Soviets, and we are currently withdrawing from Iraq and Afghanistan. Why not draw down the bases we have over there (leaving small contingents in Japan and Germany to support our global air strike and special forces capabilities), and move the bulk of the troops back to the United States to be with their families and defend our borders?
My guess is that we could save billions of dollars, reunite thousands of families, and nearly eliminate our border issues by doing so. The troops at home would spend their paychecks at home, and the infrastructure improvements would be built by U.S. residents, thus giving our economy an immediate boost.
It is high time to end the GOP/Dem roadblocks to fiscal sanity.