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Preposterous Waste, Pentagon Style
Townhall.com ^ | May 4, 2013 | Daniel J. Mitchell

Posted on 05/04/2013 8:19:09 AM PDT by Kaslin

National defense is one of the few legitimate functions of the federal government, but that doesn’t mean the military should get a blank check to spend unlimited amounts of money.

To make sure taxpayers get the best bang for the buck (no pun intended), there should be a sober assessment of threats to national security and a plan to defend against those threats without adding superfluous expenditures.

That being said, America already accounts for close to 50 percent of world military spending, with another 25 percent of the global total coming from nations that are allied to the United States, so I’m fairly confident that we’re not under-spending on the Pentagon.

That’s one of the reasons I don’t worry that much about the sequester, particularly since military spending actually climbs by about $100 billion over the next 10 years.

But I would like the Defense Department to have some flexibility to reallocate funds so that we spend money on national security rather than boondoggles.

And there are some absurd examples of waste at the Pentagon, including “green” jet fuel that costs 15 times as much as regular fuel. Here are some of the mind-boggling details from the Washington Examiner.

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel recently warned that sequestration would cause “suspension of important activities, curtailed training, and could result in furloughs of civilian personnel” but the spending cuts haven’t killed the green fuels program, as the Pentagon has continued purchasing renewable fuel at $59 per gallon. “In March, Gevo entered into a contract with the Defense Logistics Agency to supply the U.S. Army with 3,650 gallons of renewable jet fuel to be delivered by the second quarter of 2013,” Gevo announced this week in its first quarter financial report. “This initial order may be increased by 12,500 gallons.

This is even worse than the bizarre $600,000 frog statue than the Defense Department selected to adorn a new $700 million office building.

Military Frog SculptureI realize that the $700 million office building should be the bigger issue, but I can’t help but be irked by the thought that taxpayers are being raped and pillaged for the frog.

In any event, the $700 million for the office building is pocket change compared to the amount of money we misallocate to subsidize Western Europe to protect against a Warsaw Pact military alliance that no longer exists!

Yes, it’s true that America’s main fiscal problem is entitlement spending. And, yes, domestic discretionary spending is a bigger problem than the defense budget.

But wasting money in those areas is not a reason to also have waste at the Pentagon.


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Editorial; Foreign Affairs
KEYWORDS:

1 posted on 05/04/2013 8:19:09 AM PDT by Kaslin
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To: Kaslin

In defense of the Defense Department, the overal US Federal budget (at least those that were submitted) contains 62% of the total budget for ENTITLEMENT SPENDING.

Additionally, many of the expenditures the DoD MUST make are mandated by Congress and the Executive Branch. One example is the bullshit requirement for new buildings, etc. to contain a certain percentage of the cost in “ART” ala the Frog statue.

Yes, there is waste and abuse, but in my opinion, singling out the Defense Department for stuff like this without at least taking entitlements like welfare to task is reprehensible. I drove this morning early to the Post Office, to UPS and to WM...on the way I pass by the local County Welfare housing....their bags of trash were piled outside their house, ready for the Saturday morning pickup.

They get their house, their food, their health, an ETIC check and who the hell knows what else....and some poor fool comes Saturday morning to pick up their fricking trash to boot....

If the DoD budget has to contain this mandate crap just to get our soldiers in Afghanistan what they need to keep them alive, then so be it. I’d rather see these leeches in welfare housing dealing with the IEDs myself.


2 posted on 05/04/2013 8:28:31 AM PDT by Gaffer
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To: Kaslin

The Founding Fathers understood that any government spending is wasteful, and so tried to severely limit its scope.

National defense is not exempt from waste and fraud, but the consequences of it are sobering and evident.

But Education or Energy? No real way to reveal them as wasteful and fraudulent, and no negative consequences for those involved.


3 posted on 05/04/2013 8:36:20 AM PDT by jjotto ("Ya could look it up!")
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To: Gaffer

IMO the article’s focus was that the sequestration is NOT causing pain in the way Hagel is asserting. There is no need to cut training etc as evidenced by this article.

Keep $600,000 frog “art”? But cut training.

To me this article points out the disingenuous position of the regime.

Notwithstanding points about sequestration - you make a good point.


4 posted on 05/04/2013 9:02:05 AM PDT by Principled
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To: Principled

A lot of Pentagon spending is CAUSED by “political correctness”. The over $50 a gallon fuel that they are being FORCED to purchase is the tip of the iceberg. How much did we spend on smart bombs and magical technology when it would have been just as easy when the defenses were neutralized, to bomb the daylights out of the place with B-52’s and absolutely stupid bombs until they sued for peace. Same with Afghanistan. Just start taking out entire square miles until the white flag is raised.


5 posted on 05/04/2013 9:33:54 AM PDT by The Antiyuppie ("When small men cast long shadows, then it is v?ery late in the day.")
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To: The Antiyuppie
...to bomb the daylights out of the place with B-52’s and absolutely stupid bombs until they sued for peace. Same with Afghanistan. Just start taking out entire square miles until the white flag is raised.

What do you want? To win or something? Cuz that's how you do it.

6 posted on 05/04/2013 9:36:08 AM PDT by Principled
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To: Kaslin
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel recently warned that sequestration would cause “suspension of important activities, curtailed training, and could result in furloughs of civilian personnel” but the spending cuts haven’t killed the green fuels program, as the Pentagon has continued purchasing renewable fuel at $59 per gallon. “In March, Gevo entered into a contract with the Defense Logistics Agency to supply the U.S. Army with 3,650 gallons of renewable jet fuel to be delivered by the second quarter of 2013,” Gevo announced this week in its first quarter financial report. “This initial order may be increased by 12,500 gallons.

12500 gallons equals about 81000 pounds of fuel. That might be enough to fuel a 757 for an average day of hauling Pelosi back and forth from Kalifornia or Moochelle and friends to a ski slope somewhere.

7 posted on 05/04/2013 10:03:43 AM PDT by Don Corleone ("Oil the gun..eat the cannoli. Take it to the Mattress.")
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To: The Antiyuppie

That assumes we have enough B-52s to do the job. We don’t, not anymore. We have 76 left. Three Wings, one of which is Reserve. What we NEED is to re-activate the remaining “boneyard” B-52s as bomb-platform drones. . .


8 posted on 05/04/2013 10:09:06 AM PDT by Salgak (Acme Lasers presents: The Energizer Border. I **DARE** you to cross it. . . .)
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