Monday, January 07, 2013

The Invisible War Elephants

Not the elephants Hannibal is said to have used to cross the Alps but invisible elephants of a particular type:  The tremendous military expenditure of the United States.  The picture below shows the military expenditures of the five biggest spenders on this planet.  All in all, the United States alone spends 41% of all military spending in the world. 

Makes you think, doesn't it?  Or rather, makes you wonder  how that herd of fat invisible elephants can be so completely ignored when the talk is about government debt or welfare spending or health care spending or retirement spending.  Because ignored it is.

"Civilized people" don't mention all that money budgeted for the killing of foreigners.  "Civilized people" may,  however, discuss the best ways of saving money by starving the poor or by throwing grampa out of the nursing home, at least as long as these things are called cutting back on entitlements.

But seriously.  How many times must the US military budget exceed that of all other countries before we can feel completely safe?   That graph is preposterously ridiculous.  IF, as the Republicans say, this country can no longer afford a proper social safety net how on earth can it afford all those bombs?