Pop Quiz

Which costs the US taxpayer more: The entire US military establishment, including the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, or benefits for elderly citizens?
For 2007 total military related expenses were a tad over $626 billion.
Total benefits to the elderly were $952 billion.
And the Boomer Boom is just starting folks.
As horrible as the Republicans have been with the budget, and they have been scandalously disgraceful, can we really afford the Democrats?

8 Responses to “Pop Quiz”

  1. The_Real_JeffS says:

    I don’t think we can afford either of them.

  2. Thomas Pfau says:

    Question 2: Which of these expenses is mentioned in the Constitution as a responsibility of the federal government?

  3. Mr. Bingley says:

    Well Thomas, the Preamble does say “…provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare,…” which certainly covers a good part of the defense budget to my eye. You’ve got me on the elderly benefits.

  4. memomachine says:

    One thing you have to keep in mind is that the DoD is using this time, of politically acceptable open money spigot, to revamp and modernize the entire US military.

  5. Tainted Bill says:

    I doubt that the Republican Party which helped pass the prescription drug benefit has the slightest intention of controlling the cost of benefits to the elderly.

  6. nightfly says:

    A friend sent me a link to a movie proposing more sustainable economies. It is probably much as you fear it was, including some terrible factual errors. This is one of them – the film claimed that more than half the US budget was military spending. I didn’t think that was right, and now, golly gee but there it is in print. Thanks guys.

  7. The_Real_JeffS says:

    Mr. B, the Constitution also provides for the common defense in Article 1, Section 8, and further says:
    “To raise and support Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that Use shall be for a longer Term than two Years;
    To provide and maintain a Navy;
    To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions;
    To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining the Militia, and for governing such Part of them as may be employed in the Service of the United States, reserving to the States respectively, the Appointment of the Officers, and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress;”
    So, there y’go, Thomas!
    And, yep, the welfare part is up in the air (IMHO) as far as the Constitution is concerned.

  8. nightfly says:

    One could argue that, since the Constitution is silent on the question, it becomes the legislature’s responsibility to ask which policies actually DO promote the general welfare – punishing achievers and subsidizing disastrous social ills, or the reverse.

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