The US Military Can Clearly Afford A Major Budget Cut

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posted on Aug, 23 2012 @ 11:44 AM
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This is not a bash those who serve thread but rather a bash those who make the decisions thread. I've been through three drawdowns and survived them all. The one common factor through all these drawdowns though was what I call, "The people vs. weapons" factor.

www.businessinsider.com...

Snippet from the article.


Sequester is coming, sequester is coming!

Everyone in Washington is running around crying sequester, when automatic defense cuts are supposed to kick in Jan 1, 2013, and cut hundreds of billions in defense spending, screaming: "Oh my! The sky will certainly fall!"

I have four words for them: Relax: No, it won't.

And as if to prove my point, the military is so flush The Army's hiring $90,000 a year acupuncturists to treat its troops. Times clearly ain't so tough.


But this is what I am really alluding too. Another snippit from the article.


"The reality is that the Global Hawk system has proven not to be less expensive to operate than the U-2, and in many respects the Global Hawk Block 30 system is not as capable—from a sensor perspective—as is the U-2,” he told Aviation Weekly.

And it's a ten year old program. It started in 2001, and has been refined since, and still has not met expectations.

Ohio lawmakers lost their minds though when the idea of cutting the program came up. Lost their bipartisan minds, that is.

Senator Sherrod Brown (D.) and Senator Rob Portman (R.), of the Senate Appropriations Committee the Senate Armed Services Committee respectively, both sought to keep these programs despite the Pentagon advising against. The defense programs are connected to jobs in Ohio, and these senators want to keep federal money in their districts because it serves as a stimulative effect to the local economy.

So here we have a program that the pentagon clearly does not want anymore, one that they favor in a more taxpayer friendly program that already exists, but are shot down. Pun intended.

There are plenty more examples of this type of fighting going on between Congress and the Pentagon, such as the dual engine requirements for the F-35.

But the people who really pay the price for this bickering are the Joes and Janes that are deployed.

When I first entered the service we would do what is called PMCS (Preventive maintenance checks and services) daily on our equipment. If we found a faulty piece we would replace it if it was available and if not order it and it would arrive within the day or so.

Not anymore.

A couple of years back while downrange, I needed a new fan belt for one of my Up armored HUMMV’s and was told by maintenance to drive it until it breaks, then we’ll get you a new one. Needless to say, I went ballistic.

R&D is needed of course, but not at the expense of giving those who need parts and equipment now for the equipment they currently have. New equipment doesn’t magically appear when you need it.

To quote Donald Rumsfeld, “You fight with what you have.”

Ok, I get it, but please have the spare parts on hand if you are going to issue me substandard equipment...I’ll be needing them.

I’m really thinking that a “combat acupuncturist” is not needed on the battlefield, but rather a well trained medic instead.

Maybe they should follow the Marines who recently ordered a .45 cal pistol because it has the stopping power instead of being PC with NATO with the 9mm. We're seeing Vietnam era M14's being pulled out of storeage for the same reason.

Maybe, just maybe, the private sector should develop things with there own funds, AND THEN sell them to the Government. "Hey! look at we just developed, we thought you may need this." It's a win-win for all involved.

The thing is it's is not so much that the Joes and Janes are such a drain, it's the unwanted R&D.

Hell, this rant is going all over the place, but I think you get the gist. If needed, I'll clarify.

I still don't have the off-site content thing down...sorry.
edit on 23-8-2012 by TDawgRex because: (no reason given)
edit on 23-8-2012 by TDawgRex because: (no reason given)
edit on 8/23/2012 by tothetenthpower because: --Mod Note--Please use [ EX ] tags for external content.
edit on 8/23/2012 by tothetenthpower because: (no reason given)




posted on Aug, 23 2012 @ 12:10 PM
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imagine how much the nation would save if the military took just one day off.

park the trucks, planes, choppers for just one day... national save money at the pump day.



posted on Aug, 23 2012 @ 12:10 PM
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reply to post by TDawgRex
 




That is all that needs to be given as information, to show that United States spends FAR too much on military spending.

~Tenth



posted on Aug, 23 2012 @ 12:20 PM
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reply to post by TDawgRex
 


I would agree with you that the military could use some cutting... BUT only in certain ways.

Close all bases in Germany, England, Italy, South Korea, Japan and God knows where else. These are some of the most advanced countries in the world, let them defend themselves... This would save us a TON of money, having 100,000's US military stationed around the world is insanely expensive.

BUT we should not touch the R&D budget... Some people will say "oh they are just creating weapons to kill more people", and this is true.

But anybody that does research on the subject knows almost ALL of the luxuries we enjoy today started off as DoD research projects.

GPS, the Internet, medical lifesaving machines, suspension in your cars... Lets not be naive...
edit on 23-8-2012 by IsThisThingBugged because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 23 2012 @ 12:27 PM
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reply to post by IsThisThingBugged
 


I'm not niave and totally agree with you. But the business of contracts has gotten out of hand these days. And I do know that they create jobs.

But when you have the warfighters saying that Item X is a piece of crap and they are spending out of their own pocket to buy Item Y off the shelf, then I have a problem.

Take the M2/3 Bradley for instance, todays it is a excelent piece of machinery. But when it first came out, most Soldiers hated it.

My question is why take twenty years to perfect something when the damn thing should work right off the assembly line?



posted on Aug, 23 2012 @ 12:46 PM
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reply to post by TDawgRex
 


Touche. But the DoD comprises the whole research and development budget of the US... Even university's budgets are driven by the DoD (at places like MIT and Cal Tech at least).

Fighting vehicles and aircraft are just what we see.

What we NEED to do is get rid of "cost-plus" contracts. It's BS.

Tell me how much the dang system will cost and build it. If you go over thats hardly the tax payers problem.



posted on Aug, 23 2012 @ 12:47 PM
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Originally posted by IsThisThingBugged
reply to post by TDawgRex


Close all bases in Germany, England, Italy, South Korea, Japan and God knows where else. These are some of the most advanced countries in the world, let them defend themselves... This would save us a TON of money, having 100,000's US military stationed around the world is insanely expensive.
Agree completely.

But anybody that does research on the subject knows almost ALL of the luxuries we enjoy today started off as DoD research projects.
Agree completely.



posted on Aug, 23 2012 @ 12:53 PM
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Originally posted by IsThisThingBugged
reply to post by TDawgRex
 


Touche. But the DoD comprises the whole research and development budget of the US... Even university's budgets are driven by the DoD (at places like MIT and Cal Tech at least).

Fighting vehicles and aircraft are just what we see.

What we NEED to do is get rid of "cost-plus" contracts. It's BS.

Tell me how much the dang system will cost and build it. If you go over thats hardly the tax payers problem.


Once a contract is agreed upon, it should be adhered to. Cost over-runs should be sucked up at the Company expense.

That's just the price of doing business...or so I thought.

Nowadays, they just tack it on to the bill. Seems lucrative don't it?

It has to stop.



posted on Aug, 23 2012 @ 01:01 PM
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Originally posted by spaceg0at
imagine how much the nation would save if the military took just one day off.

park the trucks, planes, choppers for just one day... national save money at the pump day.



You would be flabbergasted at how many days units take off. Not the military as a whole.

Then again, spending a year down range with no days off or even two months in the field on a training exercise...they deserve it.

You'll never get the Military as a whole to take the day off.

Maybe we should ask Congress to take a month off...with no pay.



posted on Aug, 23 2012 @ 02:13 PM
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Great thread here Tdawg. This is a patently absurd situation and I've never looked at the Military and thought ' Well, we have entirely too many men and basic gear to equip them with'. I look at a Military budget larger than the next several combined, and think we have far too many insanely expensive toys and gizmos at the expense of the men, not in real support of them. At least that is my take, and thanks for bringing light to this serious issue.



posted on Aug, 23 2012 @ 02:40 PM
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Originally posted by Wrabbit2000
Great thread here Tdawg. This is a patently absurd situation and I've never looked at the Military and thought ' Well, we have entirely too many men and basic gear to equip them with'. I look at a Military budget larger than the next several combined, and think we have far too many insanely expensive toys and gizmos at the expense of the men, not in real support of them. At least that is my take, and thanks for bringing light to this serious issue.


Thank you summerizing my discorded rant. No matter how many gizmos you have, it still takes a Soldier on the groung to say you own it.

The way things are headed, I would say that we are headed down a rocky path.

Drones don't talk to the locals, the Soldiers do though, and if they have a good leader, then things get pacified, which is a good thing.

Well educated Soldiers is where the money makes bank, where there is a tangible outcome. But it seems that the drones is where the money is.


Contracts don't buy a good Soldier, but giving him/her substandard equipment can kill them. All in the name of profit.



posted on Aug, 31 2012 @ 01:54 AM
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I just heard senator McCain say that they already cut 400 billion from the pentagon's budget prior to sequestration. If sequestration hits it will be quite disruptive. Thousands will lose their jobs and capabilities will be lost, maybe forever.

I do agree though that a lot of foreign bases should be shut down.



posted on Aug, 31 2012 @ 04:12 AM
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Tdawg,

The military ditched its vehicle mechanics and replaced them with FOR PROFIT contractors. Why change the oil every year on that vehicle when you can pencil whip it and the contractor saves the costs of oil and filters to put into profits. They then use those profits to whine and dine politicians and make sizable contributions to their political party/election.

To hide the mess I heard a rumor they actually called in active duty to fix vehicles over there and the contractors sat around doing nothing but laughing all the way to the bank.

We've been robbed. Capability........the first videos of the Iraq War showing upside down HumVee's with bald tires.....hmmm.....why were they shipped over there with bald tires? Ahhhhh......you see?

Politricks. The nation's been robbed.
edit on 31-8-2012 by Pervius because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 2 2012 @ 12:32 PM
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reply to post by TDawgRex
 


Agreed. However, the World hates America because we have power, freedom, and power. We have to be ready to defeat multiple nations without nukes. Cut Medicare / caid before you undermined our technological superior war machines.

Constitution doesn't guarantee you free tax payer money. However, it guarantees you freedom.

I am still trying to figure out why we don't have anything better than that piece of trash m4 and why we dont have hard point body coverage. I guess the government thinks you can only get shot in the chest.

What's that? You got shot in the leg? Aww, only a flesh wound right? Forget about the severed artery and half of your tibula blown out the other side of your leg.
edit on 2-9-2012 by milkyway12 because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 2 2012 @ 08:03 PM
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reply to post by TDawgRex
 


This is a topic with which I have some familiarity. As many of you know I served 24 years in the Army. While not a General I was fairly senior and have worked on many a General’s staff in various positions and therefore privy to more of the financial and budgeting details of the military than I actually cared to be. Working in supply and or budgeting is a suck job – for sure. When one attains a certain level of leadership it stops being about people as much as it is about managing budgets, equipment and supplies.

Anyway, some would immediately expect me to be all for a robust and fat military budget; however, they would be wrong. Congress has in my opinion always given the Army (I cannot speak to the Navy, Coast Guard or Air Force components) more than enough money to accomplish its operational missions, recruit and train quality Soldiers, and maintain its equipment along with conducting research and development to procure the newest technology. It is the military leaders who spend that money unwisely in my opinion.

The Army for one has always spent way too much money on R&D and procurement and too little on personnel and benefits. What is the first thing the military threatens to cut when it’s budget is cut? The benefits of the retirees and veterans – why? Because they are using emotion to blackmail the people into thinking they just can’t support the retirees and veterans if the budget is cut.

When in reality that and pay and benefits in general is a miniscule portion of the operating budget.

All the wiz bang golly gee projects are the money pit.

So much money is wasted on these pet projects for not only the Senators and Congressmen to satisfy their districts thirst for the federal teat but the General’s themselves trying to make an impact statement or career jump by being the one to bring in the newest next big thing.

Then there is the intraservice rivalry that pits them against each other for R&D rather than encourages joint ventures. Why does the Air Force need its own camo uniform or any service for that matter? Some missions are unique sure the Army will never need a strike fighter or an amphibious APC but we all need the same prime movers. It’s all the politics that is waste.





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