serious question for our dem friends

junior1

Well-Known Member
May 29, 2001
6,741
7,429
1
I was having a lite conversation with a long time friend - a staunch democrat - about national debt, is it bad, manageable, should we be focusing on reducing it etc.....not surprisingly, the first thing he brought up was that we need to tax the rich and apply the monies to reducing the debt. OK, I can see that, but we don't have a real good record with using tax funds on the debt, rather we seem to raise taxes and spend them or at least some part of the funds raised. Of course, my first solution was to reduce spending and that brings me to my question.......concerning reduce spending, the first thing he threw out, rather vociferously was "reduce defense spending".
That statement got me to thinking...I am military retired, and spent a part of my career, both in military and while retired , futsing around in the world of defense acquisition and federal budgets. It occurred to me that for as long as I can remember - going back to the 80's - that one of the major democrat party issues, almost every budget year, was to reduce defense spending. I have to admit I never understood why.
Since one of the major responsibilities of the federal government is defense of the homeland you might think that both parties would be interested and focused on a strong national security base.
Now I realize that it's a general statement that the democratic party is "anti defense" , it's a relatively safe statement that there are a lot more democrats calling for defense budget reductions than there are republicans.
So my question, what is it about the defense budget that brings out the "cut defense spending" cry from so many democrats?
 

bourbon n blues

Well-Known Member
Nov 20, 2019
24,494
28,770
1
I was having a lite conversation with a long time friend - a staunch democrat - about national debt, is it bad, manageable, should we be focusing on reducing it etc.....not surprisingly, the first thing he brought up was that we need to tax the rich and apply the monies to reducing the debt. OK, I can see that, but we don't have a real good record with using tax funds on the debt, rather we seem to raise taxes and spend them or at least some part of the funds raised. Of course, my first solution was to reduce spending and that brings me to my question.......concerning reduce spending, the first thing he threw out, rather vociferously was "reduce defense spending".
That statement got me to thinking...I am military retired, and spent a part of my career, both in military and while retired , futsing around in the world of defense acquisition and federal budgets. It occurred to me that for as long as I can remember - going back to the 80's - that one of the major democrat party issues, almost every budget year, was to reduce defense spending. I have to admit I never understood why.
Since one of the major responsibilities of the federal government is defense of the homeland you might think that both parties would be interested and focused on a strong national security base.
Now I realize that it's a general statement that the democratic party is "anti defense" , it's a relatively safe statement that there are a lot more democrats calling for defense budget reductions than there are republicans.
So my question, what is it about the defense budget that brings out the "cut defense spending" cry from so many democrats?
War is bad, peace is good, let’s help people in a nutshell . I can expound on them but if you notice there is very little tslk about personal accoutntibilty and responsibility from them.
Everyone is a victim and money will solve the problem . And that money comes from taxed obviously ,
Just as you can’t put train a bad diet, you cannot tax and fun bad spending habits. For example over the years I’ve offered a few hundred people the offer to train with me to learn about weights and help themselves . Maybe ten showed up, all men bit a few wives and girlfriends came with them.
Few want to accept you need tomove more and eat less in the most simplistic terms. The details csn get difficult, but that concept must be ingrained and followed .
The mind set of your friend is just wrong, the rich don’t have enough money to bad for everyone’s bad decisions , I was talking to a young black man yesterday , he’s 31 and has 6 kids with two women . They’re both heroin addicts.
How do we rationalize that this is ok, a viable way to function. Btw, both women are baby mommas, not wives. Democrats love funding this stuff , and if you subsidize a certain behavior you will get more of it,
Take away those funds and you hate mothers, blacks, children etc with never a mention of personal responsibility .
 
  • Like
Reactions: Ski and psuted

NJPSU

Well-Known Member
May 29, 2001
44,693
15,826
1
The 3 big areas of government spending are defense, Medicare, and Social Security.

Obviously defense is the low hanging fruit. It’s budget is massive and could easily be reduced without directly impacting the American people and especially our senior citizens.
 

LMTLION

Well-Known Member
Mar 20, 2008
2,793
2,913
1
We have long ago transitioned from an American republic to a global empire administered through many facets of our government, like the military. That is very costly.
 

Online Persona

Well-Known Member
Feb 2, 2022
1,337
2,929
1
I was having a lite conversation with a long time friend - a staunch democrat - about national debt, is it bad, manageable, should we be focusing on reducing it etc.....not surprisingly, the first thing he brought up was that we need to tax the rich and apply the monies to reducing the debt. OK, I can see that, but we don't have a real good record with using tax funds on the debt, rather we seem to raise taxes and spend them or at least some part of the funds raised. Of course, my first solution was to reduce spending and that brings me to my question.......concerning reduce spending, the first thing he threw out, rather vociferously was "reduce defense spending".
That statement got me to thinking...I am military retired, and spent a part of my career, both in military and while retired , futsing around in the world of defense acquisition and federal budgets. It occurred to me that for as long as I can remember - going back to the 80's - that one of the major democrat party issues, almost every budget year, was to reduce defense spending. I have to admit I never understood why.
Since one of the major responsibilities of the federal government is defense of the homeland you might think that both parties would be interested and focused on a strong national security base.
Now I realize that it's a general statement that the democratic party is "anti defense" , it's a relatively safe statement that there are a lot more democrats calling for defense budget reductions than there are republicans.
So my question, what is it about the defense budget that brings out the "cut defense spending" cry from so many democrats?
I too am retired military, only had the occasional acquisition experience but managed many budgets up to the theater command level. It is strongly my belief that there is a ton of waste in our defense budget but none of it is desired by our military.

There is never enough money for training and soldier, seaman, marine and family support or other true needs of the units. There is enough for airmen because the air force spends this first and then argues that they don't have enough for various aircraft systems. They know how to play Congress's games.

The waste in the defense budget is due almost entirely to congress wanting things made in their states and districts that the military does not really want. Budget cuts do not occur there. It always seems to occur in the areas that the troops really have a need. I wish there were some way to change that but no democrats calling to cut the defense budget ever call out their own congressman or woman for spending on their pet projects embedded in the defense budget.

I would also add that throughout my career, I knew for certain that with a democrat administration we also got lower pay raises, less unit funding, cuts to the end strength often resulting in even those on deployments getting essentially pink slipped, and lower promotion rates. There are still some military that haven't experienced enough of this to see the pattern and those continue to vote democrat who promptly hurt the military and their families when in power.
 

maypole

Well-Known Member
May 9, 2022
1,837
767
1
According to an accountant I know who led a team trying to audit the military budget, it is literally unauditable. No wonder, we spend more on the military than the next 10 nations combined and 40% of the world’s total.
Defense is important, but come on.
 

Online Persona

Well-Known Member
Feb 2, 2022
1,337
2,929
1
According to an accountant I know who led a team trying to audit the military budget, it is literally unauditable. No wonder, we spend more on the military than the next 10 nations combined and 40% of the world’s total.
Defense is important, but come on.
That doesn't sound correct. All military spending is audited. There is a system for purchasing even down to the platoon level and low level unit funds that has automatic audit procedures on every purchase. The purchase officer can sign off on purchase requests but then it goes to another level for authorization and then yet another for auditing. I'm not saying there is no waste. I'm saying that most certainly it is audited and examined in great detail.

I've been a purchasing officer, a procurement officer, a budget officer, and a commander at various levels. There are systems in place at every level that audit and command emphasis to scrutinize efficient use of funds.
 

YeOldeCup

Well-Known Member
Jan 27, 2005
2,795
2,055
1
I was having a lite conversation with a long time friend - a staunch democrat - about national debt, is it bad, manageable, should we be focusing on reducing it etc.....not surprisingly, the first thing he brought up was that we need to tax the rich and apply the monies to reducing the debt. OK, I can see that, but we don't have a real good record with using tax funds on the debt, rather we seem to raise taxes and spend them or at least some part of the funds raised. Of course, my first solution was to reduce spending and that brings me to my question.......concerning reduce spending, the first thing he threw out, rather vociferously was "reduce defense spending".
That statement got me to thinking...I am military retired, and spent a part of my career, both in military and while retired , futsing around in the world of defense acquisition and federal budgets. It occurred to me that for as long as I can remember - going back to the 80's - that one of the major democrat party issues, almost every budget year, was to reduce defense spending. I have to admit I never understood why.
Since one of the major responsibilities of the federal government is defense of the homeland you might think that both parties would be interested and focused on a strong national security base.
Now I realize that it's a general statement that the democratic party is "anti defense" , it's a relatively safe statement that there are a lot more democrats calling for defense budget reductions than there are republicans.
So my question, what is it about the defense budget that brings out the "cut defense spending" cry from so many democrats?
Defense comes in 4th place. The largest amount of fraud and waste is in welfare programs.

chart
 

maypole

Well-Known Member
May 9, 2022
1,837
767
1
Last edited:

roswelllion

Well-Known Member
Gold Member
Aug 18, 2003
9,914
8,908
1
First the anti defense viewpoint. These viewpoints are historical do not necessarily apply. Today the D viewpoint is simply anti Trump. If he is for they are against etc. etc
1. D's generally do not view our enemies in the same light as R's..
2. D's almost always think a diplomatic solution is better and can be achieved
3. D's are much more against nation building
4 D's do not think we should be the policeman of the world
5 As someone said the biggest categories for spending are Defense, SS and Medicare/Medicaid. Given a choice they will always cut defense before the other 2.

Regarding the actual spending
1. I have always believed ALL government spending is wasteful and inefficient.
2 Our military is the best in the world but part of that is because we so overspend.
3 DoD budgets are usually built on an increase or decrease from prior year spending and not built from ground up based on need. As a result there is a huge dis incentive to ever come in under budget.
.
 

Online Persona

Well-Known Member
Feb 2, 2022
1,337
2,929
1
First the anti defense viewpoint. These viewpoints are historical do not necessarily apply. Today the D viewpoint is simply anti Trump. If he is for they are against etc. etc
1. D's generally do not view our enemies in the same light as R's..
2. D's almost always think a diplomatic solution is better and can be achieved
3. D's are much more against nation building
4 D's do not think we should be the policeman of the world
5 As someone said the biggest categories for spending are Defense, SS and Medicare/Medicaid. Given a choice they will always cut defense before the other 2.

Regarding the actual spending
1. I have always believed ALL government spending is wasteful and inefficient.
2 Our military is the best in the world but part of that is because we so overspend.
3 DoD budgets are usually built on an increase or decrease from prior year spending and not built from ground up based on need. As a result there is a huge dis incentive to ever come in under budget.
.
With regard to the diplomatic solution, this is always aided by the unspoken threat of overwhelming force.

Negotiations from a position of weakness do not go well. Peace and deterence is most effectively achieved through projecting strength.
 
  • Like
Reactions: bourbon n blues

bourbon n blues

Well-Known Member
Nov 20, 2019
24,494
28,770
1
With regard to the diplomatic solution, this is always aided by the unspoken threat of overwhelming force.

Negotiations from a position of weakness do not go well. Peace and deterence is most effectively achieved through projecting strength.
There is no negotiating from weakness it’s just begging and pleading .
 

Ski

Well-Known Member
May 29, 2001
9,789
11,796
1
First the anti defense viewpoint. These viewpoints are historical do not necessarily apply. Today the D viewpoint is simply anti Trump. If he is for they are against etc. etc
1. D's generally do not view our enemies in the same light as R's..
2. D's almost always think a diplomatic solution is better and can be achieved
3. D's are much more against nation building
4 D's do not think we should be the policeman of the world
5 As someone said the biggest categories for spending are Defense, SS and Medicare/Medicaid. Given a choice they will always cut defense before the other 2.

Regarding the actual spending
1. I have always believed ALL government spending is wasteful and inefficient.
2 Our military is the best in the world but part of that is because we so overspend.
3 DoD budgets are usually built on an increase or decrease from prior year spending and not built from ground up based on need. As a result there is a huge dis incentive to ever come in under budget.
.

I would add that there is tremendous pressure to spend every dollar because if you don't then you didn't really need it, so your budget gets cut for the next year. Maybe that is the correct thing to do, but it adds pressure to spend government dollars and not save them. In a couple of my units I was the purchase card holder for IT. We could spend large amounts of money quickly. Around July of every year if my units had extra funds they would come to us and say, "we have this money that we have to spend before the end of the fiscal year, can you use it to purchase IT equipment?" We would dutifully spend every dollar that we could down to the last penny. The only positive was that our old IT equipment was handed down to other units not quite as well funded to replace their less capable, old, or broken equipment. There were ways to get around the color of money issue when it came to appropriated dollars.
 

junior1

Well-Known Member
May 29, 2001
6,741
7,429
1
Totally fake. And What is the source? A nazi site? True welfare is 15% of outlays. How much of those pensions are for retired military? How much of that health care is for VA? Does welfare include SS?
This is Treasury Department breakdown FY 2022:
<https://www.usgovernmentspending.com/us_fed_spending_pie_chart>
maypole you're avoided the question, but at least you responded. Obviously you, like my friend, think we could cut defense spending. But you don't say why. In fairness I don't think you can compare it to other nations expenditures because our main adversaries China and Russia have significantly different forms of government as well as different cost and production structures. Isn't it more important to compare our defense capabilities versus the capabilities of our enemies? For example, right now China is the one making the most military noise. They have 777 warships compared to our 490 (depending on whose data you accept) We'll never get to equality ship wise with China so we need different weapon systems in order to negate their numeric capability. I could go on with air and ground forces, but I don't want to take you away from the basic question of why do you feel we can cut defense.
By the way, the military retirement and healthcare costs are included in the defense budget.
 

Catch50

Well-Known Member
Feb 5, 2003
36,305
2,317
1
I was having a lite conversation with a long time friend - a staunch democrat - about national debt, is it bad, manageable, should we be focusing on reducing it etc.....not surprisingly, the first thing he brought up was that we need to tax the rich and apply the monies to reducing the debt. OK, I can see that, but we don't have a real good record with using tax funds on the debt, rather we seem to raise taxes and spend them or at least some part of the funds raised. Of course, my first solution was to reduce spending and that brings me to my question.......concerning reduce spending, the first thing he threw out, rather vociferously was "reduce defense spending".
That statement got me to thinking...I am military retired, and spent a part of my career, both in military and while retired , futsing around in the world of defense acquisition and federal budgets. It occurred to me that for as long as I can remember - going back to the 80's - that one of the major democrat party issues, almost every budget year, was to reduce defense spending. I have to admit I never understood why.
Since one of the major responsibilities of the federal government is defense of the homeland you might think that both parties would be interested and focused on a strong national security base.
Now I realize that it's a general statement that the democratic party is "anti defense" , it's a relatively safe statement that there are a lot more democrats calling for defense budget reductions than there are republicans.
So my question, what is it about the defense budget that brings out the "cut defense spending" cry from so many democrats?
I'm for strong defense spending. But I believe that will members of Congress from both parties are guilty. I cannot help but believe that Republicans are likely to throw obstacles into transparent DOD spending and DOD budget reform. This from the crowd that hates every other type of federal spending to create decent paying jobs.
 

Online Persona

Well-Known Member
Feb 2, 2022
1,337
2,929
1
I'm for strong defense spending. But I believe that will members of Congress from both parties are guilty. I cannot help but believe that Republicans are likely to throw obstacles into transparent DOD spending and DOD budget reform. This from the crowd that hates every other type of federal spending to create decent paying jobs.
Both parties do this, it's called bring home the bacon. The reform needs to be at the congressional level. I've been in some units particularly in the SF world where we were hosting congresspersons weekly in CONUS while managing forward elements in Afghanistan and Iraq. The congresspersons were essentially there as reps for defense contractors from their districts trying to find out what they could put in the defense budget that would get support in the bill (made in their district of course).

The higher you go, the more political the spending gets. There are unit needs and there are things the congresspersons want to sell. They are often not the same.
 
  • Like
Reactions: GSPMax

2lion70

Well-Known Member
Gold Member
Jul 1, 2004
17,380
6,107
1
The 3 big areas of government spending are defense, Medicare, and Social Security.

Obviously defense is the low hanging fruit. It’s budget is massive and could easily be reduced without directly impacting the American people and especially our senior citizens.
Also both Medicare and SS have their own designated taxes to support their expenditures.
What is Defense?
- waging wars all over the world where we have little at stake?
- developing new weapons based on technology
- buying a lot of the parts of our weapons systems from other, sometimes hostile, countries
- not using the already authorized Militia (National Guard) more fully
- being the world policeman

The top tax rate for the higher income folks was as high as 90% and a lot of folks created huge fortunes.
 
  • Like
Reactions: maypole

PaoliLion

Well-Known Member
Nov 2, 2003
12,785
6,385
1
That statement got me to thinking...I am military retired, and spent a part of my career, both in military and while retired , futsing around in the world of defense acquisition and federal budgets. It occurred to me that for as long as I can remember - going back to the 80's - that one of the major democrat party issues, almost every budget year, was to reduce defense spending. I have to admit I never understood why.

There's a lot of waste and corruption within defense spending. Dems know this. The Republicans aren't really pro military, they're pro military contracts. The Republican Party strongly support industries where a relatively small number in companies benefit massively from Government spending or lax regulation. If you swap "political party" with "lobbyist", all of the Republican Party stances make a lot more sense. ask yourself, why is the Republican Party so opposed to programs to help the rank and file military men and women, but also pretends to be "pro military"?

You're asking the wrong questions bud
 

junior1

Well-Known Member
May 29, 2001
6,741
7,429
1
There's a lot of waste and corruption within defense spending. Dems know this. The Republicans aren't really pro military, they're pro military contracts. The Republican Party strongly support industries where a relatively small number in companies benefit massively from Government spending or lax regulation. If you swap "political party" with "lobbyist", all of the Republican Party stances make a lot more sense. ask yourself, why is the Republican Party so opposed to programs to help the rank and file military men and women, but also pretends to be "pro military"?

You're asking the wrong questions bud
no, I asked a pretty basic question, you danced quite nicely around an answer.
Waste and corruption in defense spending. Yep, you're right. But there's a lot of wasted spending in medicare, medicaid, welfare food stamps etc. We had a discussion in another thread about the IRA audits. There are more audits, percentage wise,in the earners under $25,000. Why, because of all the fraud in tax credits. Haven't heard many from the left call for cutting those programs. How much fraud was there in the PPP and other pandemic programs??? according to GAO, billions!
Can you give some examples of what you're talking about when you say "where a relatively small number of companies benefit massively from government spending or regulation". I don't follow. There are over 100,000 companies in the US that do work for defense, millions of employees. These include both small and large businesses, minority owned, small and large businessess.
Similarly can you explain what you mean about republicans opposing programs that help the rank and file? Again, I'm not sure what you're referring to.
So, if you're saying we should cut defense because there's waste and corruption, shouldn't we say the same about all the social programs where there's known waste and corruption?
 

junior1

Well-Known Member
May 29, 2001
6,741
7,429
1
Both parties do this, it's called bring home the bacon. The reform needs to be at the congressional level. I've been in some units particularly in the SF world where we were hosting congresspersons weekly in CONUS while managing forward elements in Afghanistan and Iraq. The congresspersons were essentially there as reps for defense contractors from their districts trying to find out what they could put in the defense budget that would get support in the bill (made in their district of course).

The higher you go, the more political the spending gets. There are unit needs and there are things the congresspersons want to sell. They are often not the same.
you are correct, both parties do this, and the defense companies and, surprisingly, the services themselves play this game. In the services cases, lets say for example the Navy wants, more planes. They have to compete with the other services for funds for that procurement. (yes, there is an annual budget building process in the pentagon with competition for funds). They don't get what they want. So, in a lot of cases they contact/coordinate with members of the company that manufactures the planes encouraging them to lobby the members of congress, as well as any subcontractors on the program, to add those funds in the authorization and appropriation process. Not saying it happens all the time, but it happens.
Not to make light of it, but normally there is only a $4-5 billion a year of shifting that goes on each year. While that's more money than you and I will make this year, in an $800-900billion budget it's not a big deal.
 

junior1

Well-Known Member
May 29, 2001
6,741
7,429
1
I'm for strong defense spending. But I believe that will members of Congress from both parties are guilty. I cannot help but believe that Republicans are likely to throw obstacles into transparent DOD spending and DOD budget reform. This from the crowd that hates every other type of federal spending to create decent paying jobs.
I could tell you stories about some of the most respected members of the democratic party in both house and senate and how they worked the system to benefit their constituents. On the other hand, Sen McCain, did not lift more than a pinky finger to help the defense contractors in Arizona. A left over from his experience as one of the "Keating 5" I guess. Not sure about DoD budget reform. There's a pretty robust process that goes on both before and after the budget goes to congress.
 

Catch50

Well-Known Member
Feb 5, 2003
36,305
2,317
1
Both parties do this, it's called bring home the bacon. The reform needs to be at the congressional level. I've been in some units particularly in the SF world where we were hosting congresspersons weekly in CONUS while managing forward elements in Afghanistan and Iraq. The congresspersons were essentially there as reps for defense contractors from their districts trying to find out what they could put in the defense budget that would get support in the bill (made in their district of course).

The higher you go, the more political the spending gets. There are unit needs and there are things the congresspersons want to sell. They are often not the same.
I'm saying R's are more dishonest about this.
 

roswelllion

Well-Known Member
Gold Member
Aug 18, 2003
9,914
8,908
1
I would add that there is tremendous pressure to spend every dollar because if you don't then you didn't really need it, so your budget gets cut for the next year. Maybe that is the correct thing to do, but it adds pressure to spend government dollars and not save them. In a couple of my units I was the purchase card holder for IT. We could spend large amounts of money quickly. Around July of every year if my units had extra funds they would come to us and say, "we have this money that we have to spend before the end of the fiscal year, can you use it to purchase IT equipment?" We would dutifully spend every dollar that we could down to the last penny. The only positive was that our old IT equipment was handed down to other units not quite as well funded to replace their less capable, old, or broken equipment. There were ways to get around the color of money issue when it came to appropriated dollars.
i actually had typed a story but then erased it. To shorten it i had a friend who became extremely high up in DoD in his career. He tells the story of when he was just starting out he was "called on the carpet" for coming in under budget, for the very reasons you mention. He said it never happened again.
 
  • Like
Reactions: The Spin Meister

Catch50

Well-Known Member
Feb 5, 2003
36,305
2,317
1
I could tell you stories about some of the most respected members of the democratic party in both house and senate and how they worked the system to benefit their constituents. On the other hand, Sen McCain, did not lift more than a pinky finger to help the defense contractors in Arizona. A left over from his experience as one of the "Keating 5" I guess. Not sure about DoD budget reform. There's a pretty robust process that goes on both before and after the budget goes to congress.
Robust does not mean efficient. It is well known that R's do nothing to make the IRS more efficient. The IRS still uses COBOL. I would guess the DOD is somewhat better but still not up to 2022 technology standards. I hope I'm wrong.
 

The Spin Meister

Well-Known Member
Nov 27, 2012
25,348
29,812
1
An altered state
I too am retired military, only had the occasional acquisition experience but managed many budgets up to the theater command level. It is strongly my belief that there is a ton of waste in our defense budget but none of it is desired by our military.

There is never enough money for training and soldier, seaman, marine and family support or other true needs of the units. There is enough for airmen because the air force spends this first and then argues that they don't have enough for various aircraft systems. They know how to play Congress's games.

The waste in the defense budget is due almost entirely to congress wanting things made in their states and districts that the military does not really want. Budget cuts do not occur there. It always seems to occur in the areas that the troops really have a need. I wish there were some way to change that but no democrats calling to cut the defense budget ever call out their own congressman or woman for spending on their pet projects embedded in the defense budget.

I would also add that throughout my career, I knew for certain that with a democrat administration we also got lower pay raises, less unit funding, cuts to the end strength often resulting in even those on deployments getting essentially pink slipped, and lower promotion rates. There are still some military that haven't experienced enough of this to see the pattern and those continue to vote democrat who promptly hurt the military and their families when in power.
I remember when Rumsfeld tried cutting several weapons programs and saving billion of dollars. Various Congress members squealed like stuck pigs until the ones made in their districts were refunded.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Online Persona

PSUEngineer89

Well-Known Member
Aug 14, 2021
6,254
10,676
1
Robust does not mean efficient. It is well known that R's do nothing to make the IRS more efficient. The IRS still uses COBOL. I would guess the DOD is somewhat better but still not up to 2022 technology standards. I hope I'm wrong.
Catch - you guys have all the money in the world.

The reason you're not efficient is because you guys don't need or want to be efficient.

Why should anyone listen to a guy with your limited intellect? Seriously - think about it - your IQ is 108. That's really bad.

You've got some special insight for a guy with a 108 IQ that we don't know about?

Don't be silly.
 

The Spin Meister

Well-Known Member
Nov 27, 2012
25,348
29,812
1
An altered state
I would add that there is tremendous pressure to spend every dollar because if you don't then you didn't really need it, so your budget gets cut for the next year. Maybe that is the correct thing to do, but it adds pressure to spend government dollars and not save them. In a couple of my units I was the purchase card holder for IT. We could spend large amounts of money quickly. Around July of every year if my units had extra funds they would come to us and say, "we have this money that we have to spend before the end of the fiscal year, can you use it to purchase IT equipment?" We would dutifully spend every dollar that we could down to the last penny. The only positive was that our old IT equipment was handed down to other units not quite as well funded to replace their less capable, old, or broken equipment. There were ways to get around the color of money issue when it came to appropriated dollars.
Sadly and tragically, that is standard operation procedure for every branch of the federal government and all other levels of government including townships and school systems. Even in NGOs

I was in student government at Penn State and our organization had several thousand dollars left as the year end approached. We wanted to hold it over until next year.....was told we couldn’t and the money would be returned to the university’s general funds. So we decided to donate to a proper charity. ......was told we couldn’t. Then decided to just let it go....was told if we don’t spend it somehow not only would we lose it but the next year’s budget would be reduced that amount since we showed we didn’t need it.

So we decided to have an on campus music festival with multiple live bands and raise money for a charity. THAT was approved. Spent $8,000 on festival, raised $3500 for a charity.....and it was pronounced a huge success!
 
  • Like
Reactions: Online Persona

roswelllion

Well-Known Member
Gold Member
Aug 18, 2003
9,914
8,908
1
Robust does not mean efficient. It is well known that R's do nothing to make the IRS more efficient. The IRS still uses COBOL. I would guess the DOD is somewhat better but still not up to 2022 technology standards. I hope I'm wrong.
So the last i looked the d's have had a President 10 of the last 14 years. Who do you want to blame for still using COBOL.
If any Fortune 500 company came out and said hey everyone we need to raise prices because our systems are antiquated" what would the response of the public be? Stay away from that company, they are so poorly managed they don't even use current systems. If their systems are antiquated what else is?
Your point highlights to me how badly managed government agencies really are.
 

PaoliLion

Well-Known Member
Nov 2, 2003
12,785
6,385
1
no, I asked a pretty basic question, you danced quite nicely around an answer.
Waste and corruption in defense spending. Yep, you're right. But there's a lot of wasted spending in medicare, medicaid, welfare food stamps etc. We had a discussion in another thread about the IRA audits. There are more audits, percentage wise,in the earners under $25,000. Why, because of all the fraud in tax credits. Haven't heard many from the left call for cutting those programs. How much fraud was there in the PPP and other pandemic programs??? according to GAO, billions!
Can you give some examples of what you're talking about when you say "where a relatively small number of companies benefit massively from government spending or regulation". I don't follow. There are over 100,000 companies in the US that do work for defense, millions of employees. These include both small and large businesses, minority owned, small and large businessess.
Similarly can you explain what you mean about republicans opposing programs that help the rank and file? Again, I'm not sure what you're referring to.
So, if you're saying we should cut defense because there's waste and corruption, shouldn't we say the same about all the social programs where there's known waste and corruption?

PPP was a Trump handout. The Dems pushed for transparency and monitoring, but the Republicans blocked it

https://www.thinkadvisor.com/2020/05/05/democrats-ppp-disclosure-bill-fails-senate-vote/

lower/middle income families get audited at a higher rate because it's easier. Their fraud is simpler and easier to prove. The IRS budget has fallen sharply over the last 20 years. That was a Republican priority.

Dems generally hate fraud, but they really really hate corporate fraud. Republicans generally hate fraud, but they really really hate welfare fraud.

The Republican Party receive most of their support (money) from a relatively small nimber of industries and this industries tend to be the ones that benefit from lax regulations or government spending. Oil, Gas, Mining, Defense, etc
 
  • Like
Reactions: NJPSU

maypole

Well-Known Member
May 9, 2022
1,837
767
1
no, I asked a pretty basic question, you danced quite nicely around an answer.
Waste and corruption in defense spending. Yep, you're right. But there's a lot of wasted spending in medicare, medicaid, welfare food stamps etc. We had a discussion in another thread about the IRA audits. There are more audits, percentage wise,in the earners under $25,000. Why, because of all the fraud in tax credits. Haven't heard many from the left call for cutting those programs. How much fraud was there in the PPP and other pandemic programs??? according to GAO, billions!
Can you give some examples of what you're talking about when you say "where a relatively small number of companies benefit massively from government spending or regulation". I don't follow. There are over 100,000 companies in the US that do work for defense, millions of employees. These include both small and large businesses, minority owned, small and large businessess.
Similarly can you explain what you mean about republicans opposing programs that help the rank and file? Again, I'm not sure what you're referring to.
So, if you're saying we should cut defense because there's waste and corruption, shouldn't we say the same about all the social programs where there's known waste and corruption?
There is a higher % of tax audits for those earning over $500k than those earning < $25k.
PPP can’t be compared because of emergency implementation.
Repubs really don’t like SS, Medicare, “welfare“ or anything that benefits low wage earners. OTH, they like giving tax breaks to the rich.
Again, the defense budget has been deemed unauditable by accountants.
 

maypole

Well-Known Member
May 9, 2022
1,837
767
1
maypole you're avoided the question, but at least you responded. Obviously you, like my friend, think we could cut defense spending. But you don't say why. In fairness I don't think you can compare it to other nations expenditures because our main adversaries China and Russia have significantly different forms of government as well as different cost and production structures. Isn't it more important to compare our defense capabilities versus the capabilities of our enemies? For example, right now China is the one making the most military noise. They have 777 warships compared to our 490 (depending on whose data you accept) We'll never get to equality ship wise with China so we need different weapon systems in order to negate their numeric capability. I could go on with air and ground forces, but I don't want to take you away from the basic question of why do you feel we can cut defense.
By the way, the military retirement and healthcare costs are included in the defense budget.
Your figures are dead wrong, and no source cited. See mine for accuracy as reported by Treasury Dept. Defense budget is cited as unauditable per CPAs, unique among federal agencies. “Defense” is a misnomer, includes Iraq invasion, Afghanistan and the Vietnam fiasco, for which we are still paying.
I don’t know where you got your Navy comparisons, (no source cited) but they are badly wrong, too. Most sources count Chinese Navy at 350 ships, US 290. US has carrier and sub advantage, and far more firepower. US Navy has more aircraft 3700, China 700.
 
Last edited:

junior1

Well-Known Member
May 29, 2001
6,741
7,429
1
Your figures are dead wrong, and no source cited. See mine for accuracy as reported by Treasury Dept. Defense budget is cited as unauditable per CPAs, unique among federal agencies. “Defense” is a misnomer, includes Iraq invasion, Afghanistan and the Vietnam fiasco, for which we are still paying.
I don’t know where you got your Navy comparisons, (no source cited) but they are badly wrong, too. Most sources count Chinese Navy at 350 ships, US 290. US has carrier and sub advantage, and far more firepower. US Navy has more aircraft 3700, China 700.
I stand corrected on the number of naval vessels...I didn't read far enough. It does appear that multiple sources concur with your numbers...sorry, my error
 
  • Like
Reactions: maypole

Ski

Well-Known Member
May 29, 2001
9,789
11,796
1
About getting around the color of appropriated money issue I touched on above - this story was told to the class by an instructor at a government procurement class I attended 15 years ago. I can't vouch for it other than saying that it was in fact told to us. It seems a Navy commander wanted a runway extension, but didn't have the appropriated funds for it. They did have funds for use for things like sidewalks. Getting to the punchline quickly, they extended the runway by contracting for sidewalks to be laid side by side. Low and behold if you lay enough "sidewalks" side by side at the end of a runway you can extend it. They got caught. The instructor said that stuff like this happens because there are few ramifications for doing it despite the laws on the books. Very few offenders face serious punishment.
 
  • Angry
Reactions: The Spin Meister