Skip to comments.On The Numbers (Government Spending = Aircraft Carriers)
Posted on 02/10/2013 2:32:44 PM PST by Diana in Wisconsin
We got a big reminder of the importance of government spending in the Q4 GDP report. The damn military delayed some expenditures for a few months, and it knocked 1.3% of the quarters growth rate. If it werent for the pikers at the Pentagon, we would have been in the black. GDP = Jobs, and everyone wants jobs, so it would be patriotic if the Generals and Admirals got off of their asses and and got back to spending. Right?
As it turns out, the Top Brass cant move the economys needle, at least not compared to other parts of the government that are spending the bucks that keeps things humming.
The pride of the military is the aircraft carrier. We have 11 of them floating around today. Theres good reason to believe these ships, with their monster offensive capability might come in handy, so for that reason, and the good of the economy, we should build some more. These babies cost $12B...
“America cant change spending by reducing the carrier fleet 10%. The cost of the extra ship is a rounding error when compared to [Social Security].”
The thing which should really be driving our economy is the push to Mars and other potentially profitable areas of space exploration. It’s less than clear to me at least that we need manned aircraft on carriers any more or at least it isn’t clear that we need a whole lot of them. Has anybody been doing any sort of manned fighter vs drone fighter gaming or any studies at all?
Go to www.firepower.com, Website tabulates countries economic and military power. US has the largest military, China is distant third. US foreign exchange reserve is 150 trillion, China foreign exchange reserves is 2600 trillion. We get excited when China launches a dinky former Russian medium size aircraft carrier and shows a prototype stealth fighter and scream more money for defense! Yet no one looks a China’s financial power (2600 trillion vs our 150 trillion). Today China is accumulating gold for her central banks. She produces 400 tons a year which is kept in her country, we do not know how much she imports from the world via Hong Kong for her central bank. Several years ago she announced 1050 tons in her central bank (surprising many in the world) and many think in 2013 she will announce a number 2000 to 3000 tons minimum, the US has about 8000 tons. Today China is officially the largest trading nation in the world surpassing the US annual trade activity. China in the last few years have been settling trade with letters of credit and not US dollars. If she expands this method of settling trade with other nations, the US will be stuck with a huge supply of unused US dollars returning to the US banking system causing currency inflation thus sinking the DoD buying power for fuel, parts, spares and etc to upkeep our naval operations in the world. This affect will be on top of our gov attempt to avoid default on our debts via printing currency to buy our own T Bills. China can strengthen her method of settling trade by backing these letters of credit with gold.
China is slowly strangulating the US via financial instruments from one side while we looking in the wrong direction at Chinese military props and freaking out. Eventually China does not have to sink a US carrier to reduce USN power in Pacific, our own financial crisis will deactivate the carrier forces one ship at a time. Just look at the www.firepower.com data. If you are a distant third in military power to US but possess 20x in foreign exchange reserves, which one would you use as your primary tool to undermine US power?
I didn’t say we don’t need them, I said it was less than obvious.
To be fair it seems like carriers are slowly getting about as absolete as battleships at the time.
There are more and more affordable means to effectively destroy them available each year.
Five (5) of our subs, according to Drudge, are tied up at Norfolk Virginia, because we cannot pay to have them refueled.I am assuming they are all nuclear powered.
Sounds like a Soviet Union circa 1992. They tied up a couple hundred boomers, ordered crews to grow vegetables and breed pigs, just to keep them and families alive.