As long as budgets and debt is on everyone’s mind let us look at a major part of our problem, IMO….
In case you have been remiss and avoided reading IST then you do not know that I have little faith in the War Department and its contractors (read someplace there are about 50,000 of them)…..if you have read my posts then I need explain nothing (and thank you for reading).
Since Reagan more and more of the responsibilities of the Pentagon have been outsourced.
This is a report, granted an old one, that explores the growth of so-called ‘contractors’ for the Pentagon it was published by the Center for Public Integrity in 2004…..and its findings….
The Center examined more than 2.2 million contract actions totaling $900 billion in authorized expenditures over the six-year period from fiscal year 1998 through fiscal 2003 (Oct. 1, 1997-Sept. 30, 2003). Most of the research was focused on the biggest contractors, those that won at least $100 million in prime contracts over the period studied. Some 737 prime contractors, mainly but not exclusively for-profit corporations, fit that criteria, along with several thousand of their subsidiaries and affiliates.
Half of all the Defense Department’s budget goes out the door of the Pentagon to private contractors. This percentage has stayed virtually constant over the past six years; as the Pentagon’s budget has expanded with the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, so have the dollars going to contractors.
The Pentagon’s contracting force is top-heavy, and growing more so. Out of a total universe numbering tens of thousands of contractors, the biggest 737 collected nearly 80 percent of the Defense Department’s procurement dollars. The 50 biggest contractors got more than half of all the money; the top 10 got 38 percent.
If you want more info (which I doubt will be used)…..
The Biggest Contractors
Political Influence I: Campaign Contributions
Political Influence II: Lobbying
Small Business: Bigger Than You Think
What the Pentagon Buys
The Rise in Service Contracts
Accuracy in Pentagon Reporting
Like I stated it is an old report and since then the budget for the War Department grows and grows and like most government stuff the holes and the problems were given a band-aid so the money continues to flow.
Let’s look at the most recent ‘deal’….
The agreement between President Joe Biden and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) to raise the debt limit for two years, if approved by the House and Senate, will avert a potential economic catastrophe. Biden started off demanding a “clean” debt limit increase with no extraneous provisions. McCarthy sought deep cuts in domestic discretionary spending and large increases in military spending in exchange for raising the debt limit.
The compromise, reached Sunday, includes a small decrease in domestic discretionary spending and a record $886 billion for defense, a 3.3% increase over the current year. The money allocated for the defense budget is exactly what Biden requested in the 2024 budget. Notably, about half of that money will go to defense contractors.
In 2015, the United States spent $585 billion on its military. The United States has added more than $300 billion in military spending in less than a decade. (Had military spending kept pace with inflation, military spending would still be less than $700 billion annually.) Biden has added nearly $150 billion to the military budget since 2021, the last budget approved by President Trump. The budget of the Pentagon now exceeds “the budgets for the next ten largest cabinet agencies combined.” In 2020, Lockheed Martin received $75 billion in government contracts, more than 1.5 times the budget of the entire State Department.
Last year, the United States spent more on its military than the next 10 highest-spending countries combined…
While most domestic programs are cut to the bone…..the War Department is rolling in cash….now you tell me where the problem is now that you have read this post. (Of course that will depend on the capability to read)
I Read, I Write, You Know
“lego ergo scribo”