“It is eating everybody else’s lunch.”

I’ve received a lot of email alerts this past week and they’ve all been about the same thing: stopping cuts in vital programs such as Social Security, Medicare, funding for day-care programs, education and infrastructure.  Cuts I don’t support, and I don’t think you do either.

Will you sign our petition to cut the Pentagon’s budget, not Social Security and Medicare?

As Representative Barney Frank (D-MA) put it: “The military budget is not on the table.  The military budget is at the table – and it is eating everybody else’s lunch.”

Public opinion polls repeatedly point to a preference of cutting military spending, insuring the wealthy pay their fair share, and ending subsidies and tax breaks to large corporations – Big Oil & Wall Street.

That probably won’t stop the House from approving a $530 billion Pentagon budget for 2012. It’s $9 billion less than the President requested but $17 billion more than it was in 2011. Add in $119 billion for the seemingly endless wars and occupations in Afghanistan and Iraq its $649 billion.  How’s that for fiscal responsibility?

Hands off Medicare and Social Security! Sign our petition to cut Pentagon spending today.

Serious about cutting waste?  First stop: The Pentagon, largest bureaucracy in the world. The wasteful spending list is long and the amounts are staggering:

  • $100 billion each year to operate over 900 military bases overseas
  • $40 billion a year to maintain the country’s nuclear arsenal
  • $180 billion over the next 10 years to ‘modernize’ nuclear warhead factories and delivery systems to maintain the US nuclear arsenal indefinitely
  • $119 billion a year to occupy and wage war in Iraq and Afghanistan

Pressure is building for a deal on the debt limit.  But so far, President Obama hasn’t given enough ground to satisfy Tea Party compliant Republicans without further and more drastic cuts in domestic spending.  This is absolutely the wrong direction.

Sign the petition to cut the Pentagon’s budget, not Social Security and Medicare and pass this on to those you think agree and will take a stand.

Peace Action serves on the Sustainable Defense Task Force, a bi-partisan panel made up of national security experts organized by Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) to prepare a report for the President’s deficit reduction commission.

The Task Force released a report last June titled “Debt, Deficits and Defense: A Way Forward,” outlining specific options for reducing the Pentagon budget by more than $900 billion over the next ten years.

It really comes down to guns or butter.  Time to choose.  Let’s cut the Pentagon’s budget, not Social Security and Medicare.

Humbly for Peace,

Paul Kawika Martin
Political Director
Peace Action

P.S. The House will vote on the Pentagon budget this week, the Senate will take it up soon thereafter.  Debt limit negotiators have just over one week to complete their business.  It’s time to be heard.  Sign the petition to cut the Pentagon’s budget, not Social Security and Medicare and pass this on to those you think agree and will take a stand.

2 Responses to “It is eating everybody else’s lunch.”

  1. This is, again, a marker of our national values–it’s scary to see how many of us rely on fear rather than hope.

  2. Richard Hudak says:

    Our culture has become so militarized that the military budget is not even on most people’s radar.

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