Finding our WMD

April 28, 2004
By

Fred Kaplan in Slate says the Cold War never ended for U.S. nuclear weapons spending, which is as high as it’s ever been, in constant dollars.

The report raises anew a question that always springs to mind after a close look at the U.S. military budget: What the hell is going on here? Specifically: Do we really need to be spending this kind of money on nuclear weapons? What role do nuclear weapons play in 21st-century military policy? How many weapons do we need, to deter what sort of attack or to hit what sorts of targets, with what level of confidence, for what strategic and tactical purposes?

This link pokes a toe under the tent of a reality that no American wants to admit: The Pentagon is the world’s most powerful make-work program — a welfare scheme that spreads U.S. taxpayer wealth across every layer of society, from high-tech billionaires to high school grads. It certainly does more good than harm, with the small exception that spending all this money on warmaking obliges you to fight some wars to justify it.

(Link via kuro5hin).

2 Responses to Finding our WMD

  1. The Sanity Inspector on April 28, 2004 at 10:08 am

    It certainly does more good than harm, with the small exception that spending all this money on warmaking obliges you to fight some wars to justify it.
    Ever hear the story about the farmer who bought a Komondor to guard his sheep? After a few months the farmer called the kennel and complained.
    “You said this dog was a tornado in a bottle! You said he had more fight per pound in him than the Tasmanian Devil! But all he does is lie around with the sheep in the pasture. I don’t think I’ve even heard him growl once!”
    The kennel owner replied, “Well, have you lost any sheep to wolves since you’ve had him?”
    “Yes, two!”, the farmer said. “That time I took him to the vet overnight!”
    Remember how many lefties in the early Nineties were agitating to curtail or abolish our intelligence services? After all, with the end of the Cold War, there was no need for all those spooks…

  2. tom on April 28, 2004 at 10:31 am

    to further strain the analogy: if the farmer were an American he’d have an anti-missile defense system in place to stop wolves, and the army chasing a bunch of foxes who were killing somebody else’s goats.