JMS on Usenet


Subject: Re: And So It Begins...
Date: 29 May 2003 05:17:39 GMT
From: (Jms at B5)

>The estimated 2002 defense outlays are 16% of the budget. Down from 18% in 
>1995 and roughly the same as 2000. (Source Stat Abstract 2002).  Massive 
>increases? If so, everything else (including all those people out of work) 
>must have been increased by at least as much or the military spending would 
>have increased as a percent of budget. 

As Mark Twain said, there's lies, damn lies, and statistics.  Them's one of

Firstly, the Bush administration runs separate line items.  For instance, the
whole budget of the Iraq war was not put on the defense line, it was a separate
allocation.  So right there you've got at least $100 billion, and according to
the GAO, could go as high as $150 billion before this is done.  

Second, the percentage of the budet approach only works if all other factors
remain constant.  But the amount of the budget, and our deficits, have
ballooned to near nosebleed levels, so in that respect the budget (our universe
from which the percentage is extracted) is much larger; second, there have been
cutbacks in other areas to free up money in this sector.

To put it more simply...if your household budget last year was $100, and you
spent 18%, or $18, on ammo, and the second year the budget was still $100 and
you spent 16% or $16 bucks on ammo, that's a reduction.

If the budget for year two is four hundred dollars, then that 16% is now $64


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