Here’s the thing: the House Republicans are going after their version of unsightly pimples on the body politic — the programs they and their billionaire sponsors find ideologically unpalatable — without seriously considering where our money really flows. We at TomDispatch thought we might lend a hand to Congress’s deliberations this week by offering something new: the first real figure on what American taxpayers actually pay for the Pentagon, the U.S. military, homeland security, our distant wars, the care of veterans, intelligence, and every other aspect of our national security and war state.
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$1.2 Trillion: The Real U.S. National Security Budget No One Wants You to Know About
by Chris Hellman • March 1, 2011 www.tomdispatch.com
What if you went to a restaurant and found it rather pricey? Still, you ordered your meal and, when done, picked up the check only to discover that it was almost twice the menu price.
Welcome to the world of the real U.S. national security budget. Normally, in media accounts, you hear about the Pentagon budget and the war-fighting supplementary funds passed by Congress for our conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. That already gets you into a startling price range — close to $700 billion for 2012 — but that’s barely more than half of it. If Americans were ever presented with the real bill for the total U.S. national security budget, it would actually add up to more than $1.2 trillion a year.
Phi Beta Iota: This is not new (except for its extent since 9/11). We have been using the graphic above since the mid 1990’s. What is new is that the two third of America that dropped out of politics for several decades is now back in the mix. Knowledge by itself means nothing–knowledge in the hands of angry connected young and old–now that is something to treasure. Below is a graphic for the future–what we SHOULD be doing with all that money.