General_Tao wrote:saxitoxin wrote:So, anyway, back to the thread ...
Aside from the real reason I previously enunciated as to why the U.S. can't cut defence spending (a strong U.S. military is needed to incite ongoing global unrest and drive-up the price of oil, so as to checkmate China and force their continued infusion of cash into U.S. coffers; cutting the military would also cut the Chinese cash cow and you'd be at the same place you started), a more practical reason is that 60% of U.S. defence spending goes toward military salaries and benefits.
To make a meaningful cut you'd, therefore, have to either:
(1) cut salaries and benefits (politically unpalatable)
(2) begin large-scale demobilization of standing forces, driving-up the short-term unemployment rate back past the 10% mark; this is a Catch-22 for, as unemployment increases, domestic stability decreases and the need for a robust armed forces for civil contingencies is heightened
You`re quite wong about point #2, because the reduction in spending (hence tax burden and/or debt) that comes with reducing the military payroll would actually result in more jobs being created in the public sector. It's a basic economic fact.
Look at it this way, the multi-trillion cost of the wars has helped precipitate the current severe recession in the US, which of course has resulted in record unemployment.
I absolutely agree! Ol' Saxi only notes there would be a short-term rise in unemployment in the first 6-18 months following demobilization as the economy reconfigured itself, which would make it a precarious avenue of action in a weakened economic state. But Sax is in affinity with you that, in the medium to long-term, there would be an increase in private sector employment.