Justin Raimondo: A ‘Sustainable’ Empire?Submitted by legalizeliberty on Wed, 11/17/2010 - 11:00
If only people were chaining themselves to the White House fence to protest our outrageously extravagant military budget instead of demanding the right to join the armed forces of a country that spends more on “defense” than all other nations of the world combined.
Ah well. We live in a highly imperfect world, a Bizarro World where up is down, morality is turned on its head, and common sense has fled. Oh, but there are certain compensations: we may be low on morality, but we’re high on technology. We have devices that can measure our madness down to the tenth percentile, such as this handy dandy interactive calculator published by the New York Times which challenges readers to balance the federal budget themselves.
This being the New York Times, the biases of the Establishment permeate the options we are presented with. For example, the very first option is cutting our $17 billion “foreign aid” budget – except that US outlays to foreign governments are far greater than that mere pittance.
To get the real number, try multiplying that $17 billion by 100. The Times‘ figure doesn’t cover, say, aid to Pakistan, or the maintenance of US military bases abroad (which are subsidies to those governments, as well as our own military contractors and exporters).
Is the tremendous cost of propping up the Afghan “government” categorized as “foreign aid”? Of course not, that goes under the rubric of the Defense Department and dozens of other US government agencies. And the Times’ estimate of the costs of foreign aid don’t take into account the covert money pipeline stretching out from Washington to points all across the world: bribes, secret slush funds, black market funding funneled into black ops – not to mention the costs of training and equipping the administrative bureaucracy to maintain our far-flung colonies and protectorates, both at home and abroad.