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Defense Spending is about Jobs not Defense

People need to wake up to this fact! The Military Industrial Complex isn't about defense but JOBS...


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Yeah. My country did not sign

Yeah. My country did not sign up for the Joint Strike Fighter program because we need those planes, but because they come with fat contracts to perform maintenance for instance. It creates a lot of jobs, and we all like shiny new gadgets. At least over here politicians and the media are somewhat honest about that fact.

When you force all the good industry jobs overseas, all you're left with eventually is defense contracting. And screw the money just try to imagine the brain drain with most of the best engineers and the brightest scientists working on weapons most of the time.

And don't get me wrong. I'm not a hippie. A healthy defense industry is important for any big economy. It can be a huge driver for science and other industries, when new ideas and technology can trickle down, like what happened with the internet. But when there's no industry to speak off and the education system is so gutted it doesn't provide adequate scientists you're not benefiting anyone. Then it becomes very unhealthy and a drain on the economy. You have these big companies soaking up big contracts from big government and the only natural thing for it to do is to expand and soak up more resources and labor to get bigger contracts. And if the government can't provide you bigger contracts, you push for a bigger government that can. And as long as you keep providing jobs to people the government will love you for it, because that's all they care about. It doesn't matter that those jobs don't contribute much to civic society. They're not adding much value. A missile has a price, but no real value apart from money spent on materials and labor and that probably is just a fraction of the price paid. The rest is pure profit to be divided between the government and contractor. That system becomes like an ever expanding sponge.

Sorry to bump a week old thread

But I just wanted to point out that in the USA at least, defense contractor profits (i.e. fee) are controlled by the gov't contracting agencies. At least on the Science & Technology programs like we work on.

For instance on the program I work we get 9% fee. Sometimes (i.e. rarely) we may be able to convince the gov't customer to allow us to get as much as 12% fee. On NASA contracts it's usually less than 9%... more like 6-8%.

However, our parent company does mostly commercial work (sells aircraft parts to Boeing, etc.) and they can command a 20% profit margin even on those commercial Firm Fixed Price contracts.

I am quite sure that many other commercial companies in other industries pull in 20% profit. The 3-5% average profit that people, myself included, remember from our schooling include the large number of failed businesses (which of course aren't profitable at all or aren't profitable enough to remain in business long).

So, the real key behind gov't defense contracting isn't the % profit, but the fact that the contractors get that percent based on every labor hour (which includes direct labor cost, overhead costs, general & administrative costs, and sometimes material handling costs too) billed to the gov't. When you consider that most contracts are Cost + Fee then you'll understand why the industry grows and grows. The industry pushes for more defense spending, bigger contracts, higher total funding ceilings, etc. so they get more total $ in profit (even though the % compared to commercial industry can be relatively small) because there aren't enough incentives for contractors to control costs and stick to schedules.

Essentially, defense contractors are selling man hours of labor (which are dominated by highly skilled, well-paid labor such as engineers, scientists, analysts, technicians, etc.).

Our family's journey from the Rocket City to the Redoubt: www.suburbiatosimplicity.com

As an employee of a small-ish defense contractor...

I agree that it is inefficient. And most people in the DoD/MIC vote based on what will protect their jobs. I suspect that is similar to the majority of people in most any industry though.

What is wrong with rail gun technology though? It's quite possibly the future of all projectile weapons, not to mention could play a big role space launch systems.

** Sorry this was supposed to be posted below Calgary4Paul's comment below.

Our family's journey from the Rocket City to the Redoubt: www.suburbiatosimplicity.com

Problem is as long as

Problem is as long as everyone keeps voting to keep their government crumbs, we will never be able to restore the republic. Unfortunately, only a crisis will restore it when people are forced into action,


That's why I voted for RP.

I personally don't think RP's foreign policy and plans for the military would hurt my job, but I could be wrong. I do R&D work mostly, so reducing the operational costs should not effect R&D... maybe even allow it to gain back some of what we lost when we went into Iraq and Afghanistan.

If it wasn't for RP, I'd consider voting for Johnson who wants to cut everything, including the military, by 40+%. Again, not sure how my job would be affected, if at all.

It's the right thing to do though. It's too big and too expensive and has the wrong philosophy. Unfortunately, I don't think enough other people are going to change their voting habits before the crisis hits...which is now on the very near horizon.

Our family's journey from the Rocket City to the Redoubt: www.suburbiatosimplicity.com

I am all for a strong

I am all for a strong national defense, but right now we have a national offense that just destroys parts of other nations and then we rebuild some of that infrastructure. By nature, war is a destructive force that destroys wealth. Imagine if we took the capability we use for the empire and bring them home and put them to work building things. We'd be much better off.

Military Keynesianism


Ron Paul writes of it in "Liberty Defined."

As someone here put it, "warfare is just another big government program."

"Bipartisan: both parties acting in concert to put both of their hands in your pocket."-Rothbard

Imagine what would happen if we fired the military.

Suppose that tomorrow we stopped employing every single person in the military. How many people woould lose their jobs?

As on September 30, 2010 there were 1,430,895 active military.

There were some 848,000 in the military reserves.

I honestly have no idea how many civilian employees are in the military or how many private sector people have jobs that are entirely dependent on supporting those in the military - but it has to be at least twice as many as those in active military service.

ONE reason neither party will allow the military to shrink ESPECIALLY NOW, is that unemployment would skyrocket even further.

There is about 1 civil servant in DoD

for every 2 active duty military persons.

Our family's journey from the Rocket City to the Redoubt: www.suburbiatosimplicity.com

Romney proves himself to be Socialist as well.

He wants to DOUBLE military spending.

Double the size of the military. Presumably double military employment as well. Having more and more people employed by the government IS Socialism.

According to Biden, Obama wants a period of mandatory service from ALL young people. Thats certainly a step toward 100% Government employment and Socialism.

Military Keynesianism


"Bipartisan: both parties acting in concert to put both of their hands in your pocket."-Rothbard

If you want your job to be

If you want your job to be about killing and maiming people........

Of course it is.

Behind closed door - where top Washington people know damn well that Muslims do NOT hate us for our freedom and prosperity they discuss other reasons for keeping these wars going.

The military offers employment (and adventure) for inner city directionless youth. It teaches them discipline as well. Thereby (the theory goes) reducing crime while teaching responsibility.

The military is the most Socialistic institution known, as it is the single largest employer (government employment of everyone is a tenant of Socialism) doing a variety of tasks. Without constant wars it wuld be hard to justify having so many government employees. There are legal problems of course, invovled with haing them do public works. So REAL Socialists can support the war as giving all these governemtn employees something to do.

tasmlab's picture

Pay them to take vacation

If the MIC was an elaborate jobs/make-work program, I'd rather just pay the people to go on vacation rather than drive legalized mass murder.

Currently consuming: Gatto: "Underground history of education..", FDR; Wii U; NEP Football

MIC destroys more jobs

MIC destroys more jobs than it creates because it is inefficient and essentially rewards massive misallocation of resources. A good example would be the Navy's useless new "rail gun".


Just because something

Just because something "creates" jobs, does not make it good.

By allowing companies to pollute endlessly, they are allowed to take higher profits, which, according to conventional economics, should end up in increased hiring. But that increased hiring does not account for all the property damage they have caused.

Plan for eliminating the national debt in 10-20 years:

Overview: http://rolexian.wordpress.com/2010/09/12/my-plan-for-reducin...

Specific cuts; defense spending: http://rolexian.wordpress.com/2011/01/03/more-detailed-look-a


but thanks for playing.

Did you

Even read the post in the link?

fireant's picture

Jobs are just the pawn for juicy contracts and political clout,

which are pawns for the money changers.

Undo what Wilson did

No it is about greed

and they are willing to kill innocent people to keep getting those big fat checks.
Now they are turning on there own people to milk even more out of our country.

Great article & Eisenhower video

thanks for posting!

"When the power of love overcomes the love of power, the world will know Peace." - Jimi Hendrix


Thank You for reading...if you can please share it! Also you can find me at www.facebook.com/Iamthegrandchild

I want it to become a movement of sorts. People waking up to the fact that I AM THE GRANDCHILD that will have to pay for all the debt.

It's been said we are passing the burden to our Grandchildren, we are writting checks our Grandchildren will have to pay!

I want to start a movement where people stand and say: I AM THE GRANDCHILD! Let's deal with it!