Friday, May 08, 2009

The ear of the beholder

Headline from Bloomberg, via Yahoo!:
"Obama Seeks to Halve Defense Spending Growth by 2010"

This sounds good, right? It makes it sound like we've got a president who's ready to cut back on excessive military spending.

Let me restate that for you:
"Obama Seeks to Halve Defense Spending Growth by 2010"

Did you catch it that time? This merely means that Obama plans to increase military spending next year by 2%, adjusted for inflation, as opposed to the average 4% annual increases that occurred under Bush.

Let's put it another way:

"Obama's proposed defense budget is higher than it ever was under Bush, even while he was fighting two wars on the other side of the planet."

That doesn't sound so good now, does it? When you figure that the number in Bush's last year was a 73% increase over what we spent in 2000, it looks even worse.

If a runaway train headed for a cliff starts accelerating at 5 MPH instead of the 10 MPH at which it was once accelerating, it's still going off the cliff, and will be going faster when it does than at any previous point.

This is not progress. Military spending is still going up, not down. It's just not going up as fast as it did under Bush. That's not an achievment, if you ask me.

No comments: