Zbigniew Mazurak's Blog

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Posts Tagged ‘constitution’

Newt Gingrich is mostly right about judicial reform; George Will and Quin Hillyer are wrong

Posted by zbigniewmazurak on January 15, 2012


Several weeks ago, Newt Gingrich announced his plan to rein in the judicial branch of the federal government, which has become dictatorial and usurping and nowadays legislates from the bench. His plan consists of four components:

  • Subpoenaing federal judges to testify before the Congress on their controversial rulings;
  • Impeaching usurping federal judges and removing them from office (by the Congress);
  • Abolishing usurping federal courts (e.g. the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals); and
  • Ignoring those rulings of federal courts that the President deems unconstitutional.

George Will, Quin Hillyer, and other critics of Gingrich claim that all four of these policies are unconstitutional and wrong. They are correct only regarding the first one, and only regarding the Congress. As for the other three policies, they are flat wrong and Newt Gingrich is right.

To see why, read the United States Constitution. What does the Constitution say?

Regarding policy #2 (impeaching and usurping federal judges): YES, the Congress can (and I believe should) impeach usurping federal judges and remove them from office. They are not appointed for lifetime – they serve during “good behavior” only (Art. III, Sec. 1 of the Const.). If they abuse their office, they can be subjected to the same impeachment/trial procedure as every other federal official who abuses his office, including the President.

Regarding policy #3: YES, the Congress can (and again, I believe should) abolish usurping federal courts such as the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. Again, I would point Gingrich’s critics to Art. III, Sec. 1 of the Constitution, wherein we read that the judicial branch of the federal government shall exist of the SCOTUS and such inferior federal courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish. Art. I, Sec. 8 of the Constitution gives Congress the prerogative to create federal courts inferior to the SCOTUS. Therefore, the Congress can abolish any federal court inferior to the SCOTUS anytime, at its sole discretion.

This is exactly what the Jeffersonians did in 1801. In 1800, when the Federalists lost the Congressional and Presidential elections, they wanted to prevent the Jeffersonians from enacting their policies, so they created 18 new federal courts and filled them with judges who would do their bidding; President Adams also appointed, and the Senate confirmed, John Marshall as CJ of the United States. When the Jeffersonians took over, they simply abolished the 18 newly-created federal courts and told the judges sitting on those courts: “Go home. Your courts no longer exist. You are no longer members of the federal government.”

And as for Gingrich’s fourth policy (ignoring unconstitutional rulings by the federal judiciary): yes, the President may, and indeed should, ignore such rulings. He is supposed to be a check on the other two branches of the federal government.

Let me illustrate this with an example. Suppose you’re President. Suppose the Congress passes a nationwide smoking ban in public space (cafes, bars, public buildings, open space , and even people’s own cars) with a $5,000 fine for any violators. You veto the bill, but the Congress overrides your veto and the Supreme Court upholds the bill, with a ruling written by Anthony Kennedy, joined by Sotomayor, Kagan, Breyer, and Ginsburg. That’s a 5-4 majority.

What do you do? Do you obey the ruling and enforce the bill?

Not if you treat your oath of office seriously.

Read your oath of office. Does it say anything about obeying the Congress or the Supreme Court? Did you take your oath to the Congress, the Supreme Court, or the Constitution?

The answer is: the Constitution. You did not swear to do everything the Congress and the Supreme Court tells you to; you swore to uphold the Constitution of the United States. That requires Presidents to think for themselves and to defend the Constitution even if the Congress and the Supreme Court violate it or interpret it differently.

If a Congressional bill is unconstitutional, the President is obligated by oath to refuse to enforce or obey it.

If a SCOTUS ruling runs contrary to the Constitution, the President is obligated by oath to refuse to obey it.

In America, officials don’t take oaths to institutions, individuals, or even the American people (except enlisted military personnel), only to the Constitution.

Newt Gingrich understands that. His critics, including George Will and Quin Hillyer, do not.

Posted in Constitutions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Rebuttal of Jack Hunter’s newest anti-defense lies and whitewashing of Ron Paul

Posted by zbigniewmazurak on January 6, 2012


In its opinion sections, the Daily Caller continues to publish whatever garbage leftist columnists send to it, including a recent utter garbage, written of course by the utterly-discredited leftist libertarian Jack Hunter, who doesn’t know what he’s talking about.

Firstly, it is ridiculous for him to lecture anyone on the true meaning of “conservatism” and the definition of who a conservative is, because he doesn’t understand these definitions himself and is NOT a conservative. Secondly, no, Ron Paul, as we shall see, is DEFINITELY not a conservative (let alone the most conservative presidential candidate), and calling him one is false and insulting to every REAL conservative, including myself.

Thirdly, despite Hunter’s claims that:

„Paul’s Pentagon cuts, which aren’t much different from what Sen. Tom Coburn has suggested, are necessary to streamline our military and tackle our debt problem.”

His cuts are very much different from what Sen. Tom Coburn has suggested (in terms of specifics – Paul provides no specific proposals in his budget plan, while Coburn does – the fact that Coburn’s proposals would be utterly disastrous is a different matter), and NO, they are NOT necessary to “streamline” the military and tackle the debt problem. It is unclear what Hunter means by “streamlinling the military”; if by that he means reforming it, he’s wrong, because 1) budget cuts are NOT necessary to reform the military and would actually impede the task; and 2) Paul has proposed NO specific reforms of the US military and the DOD, just a huge budgetary cut.
Hunter then used Tom Coburn as a shield for Paul:

“Coburn has allies besides Paul in this fight, or as National Review’s Jamie Fly writes:

FreedomWorks, a Washington-based group that purports to speak for the Tea Party movement, issued its own “Tea Party Budget” containing the recommendations of its debt commission. They suggested enacting defense-spending reforms previously proposed by Sen. Tom Coburn that would result in almost $1 trillion in savings over ten years.”

Coburn is an utterly discredited anti-defense libertarian, so if I were Hunter, I would not even mention his name. I’ve actually read and analyzed his proposals, and have written about them extensively (for example here and here). They would be utterly disastrous if implemented. He proposes to cut the USAF’s ICBM fleet by 200 missiles, from 500 to 300; cut the ballistic missile submarine fleet from 14 to 11; cut the carrier fleet and the number of carrier wings; cease the production of combat-proven (in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Libya) V-22 aircraft; unilateral cuts in the already-too-small nuclear stockpile; cancel the F-35’s B and C variants just as they are getting back on track; cancel the PTSS anti-ballistic-missile satellite EW program; delay the next-gen bomber program until the mid-2020s (when it will be too late); cancel the production of amphibious assault vehicles; implement many more damaging cuts; and do all of that for purely budgetary reasons, not because of any military factors, in isolation from any military issues. The cuts to the ICBM and SSBN fleets alone would dramatically reduce and weaken America’s nuclear deterrent and possibly even encourage a Russian nuclear first strike on the US.

Yet, as damaging as Coburn’s (and Paul’s) defense cuts would be, they would utterly fail to balance the budget. $1 trillion in defense cuts over a decade is $100 bn per year – just 1/15th of the annual budget deficit. This would mean unilateral disarmament in exchange for a tiny reduction of the budget deficit.
Hunter then lied further that:

“There’s a reason that Paul is the only presidential candidate who has been able to offer $1 trillion in cuts. He is the only candidate willing to address the black hole that is Pentagon spending. After entitlements, “defense” spending is the largest part of our budget. Still, Paul allows for a military budget four times the size of China’s and larger than President Bush’s 2005 military budget.
This is what Morris calls “dismantling the military.””

Firstly, the claim that “Pentagon spending” is a “black hole” is both false and insulting. It is a blatant lie, just like most of what Hunter writes. The DOD’s budget is NOT a black hole – it is always passed by Congress as a specific, limited amount of money – limited both in terms of the topline and in terms of what it can be spent on. It is not a “black hole”, but rather the #1 Constitutional DUTY of the federal government, as stated by the Constitution in its Preamble and the fourth section of its fourth Article:

“The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government, and shall protect each of them against Invasion; and on Application of the Legislature, or of the Executive (when the Legislature cannot be convened) against domestic Violence.”

The Constitution actually PRIORITIZES national defense and elevates it above all other issues. Of the 17 enumerated prerogatives of the Congress stated in Art. I, Sec. 8 of the Constitution, 9 (i.e. more than half) deal with military matters.

Hunter even denies that the Pentagon budget is defense spending, calling it “defense” spending with a quotation mark. His claim that after entitlements, military spending is the largest part of the federal budget is technically true, but only because entitlements by themselves consume a full 58% part of the federal budget – leaving little money for everything else, including the military, which must content itself with a mere 19% share. That’s right, ladies and gentlemen, the Federal Government devotes just 19% of its budget to its #1 Constitutional duty. And as the military budget is whacked further and entitlements continue to grow on autopilot, these proportions will get even worse for the DOD and even better for entitlements.

The military budget is a tiny portion of federal spending – just 19% of the total, 4.51% of GDP (lower than it was throughout the entire Cold War except FY1948), and just $2,100 per capita, less than it was throughout the entire Cold War, including the Reagan years. Calling it a “black hole” is a blatant lie. Cutting defense spending is NOT necessary to balance the budget, as both the Heritage Foundation and the Republican Study Committee have shown.

Paul’s budget plan would allow for only a $501 bn defense budget, less than 3.5% of GDP and the lowest proportion since before WW2 (excluding the late Clinton years). Moreover, it allows for NO funding of the DOE whatsoever, not even for its defense-related programs, which presumes that they would be moved to the DOD. Their budget for the current FY is $17 bn under the FY2012 NDAA, so that would leave only $484 bn as a core defense budget, not $501 bn. This would be barely $3 bn higher than Bush’s FY2005 core defense budget (which was $481.08 bn adjusted for inflation to today’s dollars) and MUCH SMALLER than his TOTAL FY2005 military budget, which included GWOT spending (which was $87 bn in nominal dollars in FY2005 and whichPaul would end completely and immediately if it depended on him). Last but not least, under Paul’s plan, defense budgets would not, after FY2013, even keep up with inflation, which means they would be cut in real terms STILL further.

Moreover, whatever total figure the defense budget was in FY2005 – seven fiscal years ago – is totally irrelevant as to what it should be today. The defense budget must be determined SOLELY on the basis of the the threat environment of today and the one expected for tomorrow, not according to some past budgetary figure. But Hunter, as a guy totally ignorant about defense and budgetary issues, doesn’t understand that.

The claim that it would be four times larger than the PLA’s budget is also utterly false. China’s military budget for FY2011 was $185 bn; to be four times larger, Paul’s defense budget would have to be 4x$185 bn, i.e. $740 bn, which is not going to happen (and $740 bn is not needed, ca. $550 bn should be enough). But equally importantly, in China, things are 3-4 times cheaper than they are in the US, meaning that if PPP differences are accounted for, China already has a larger defense budget than the US.

Furthermore, let’s not forget that Paul is the chief GOP defender of the sequestration’s mechanism and its defense cuts totalling $1.065 TRILLION, which, if implemented, WILL gut the military.

Cutting defense spending significantly to balance the budget would be a foolish mistake. It would be penny-wise and pound-foolish. It would save little money in the short-term and zero in the long term, because eventually, America’s military weakness would encourage aggression and launch America into another war that would be costly in terms of both money and blood. America’s current military spending, at 4.51% of GDP, is a small and worthy investment in preventing war.

As George Washington rightly said, “timely disbursements to prepare for danger frequently prevent much greater disbursements to repel it.” He was also right to warn of “the uncertainty of procuring a warlike apparatus at the moment of public danger.” It’s much better to prepare for war and to prevent it rather than arming yourself post factum, when war has already begun.

Last but not least, if Paul is going to implement Tom Coburn’s defense cuts proposals, or anything similar, that IS going to gut the military for the same reasons I listed in my critiques of Coburn’s proposals, while failing to reform the DOD. So Dick Morris was right – Ron Paul DOES want to dismantle the military – as does veteran pacifist Barack Obama (who is, like Paul, an ardent supporter of the sequestration mechanism). That is a fact.
Then, Hunter invoked Russell Kirk: “But since we’re discussing conservatism, let’s take a look at what Russell Kirk had to say about this subject.” He quoted Kirk’s objections to Operation Desert Storm.

Kirk had reasons for his concerns. But with regard to Desert Storm, they were unfounded. That operation was limited in scope and objectives. Its only goal was to kick Saddam Hussein’s military out of Kuwait and cripple it. Once these goals were achieved, President Bush the Elder brought US troops back home. He didn’t say “Oh, let’s go further, take Baghdad and topple Saddam Hussein, because the opportunity has presented itself!”

Conducting Desert Storm was the RIGHT thing to do. There was no way that the US could’ve tolerated Saddam’s drive to dominate the entire Middle East and his threat to Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest reservoir of oil. It had NOTHING to do with 9/11, which was perpetrated by Al-Qaeda, which was hostile to Saddam Hussein.
But don’t waste your breath telling that to Hunter, who bombastically (and falsely) claims that

“For basically every position Morris calls “liberal” or “radically left-wing” you can find some of the most prominent and respected names in American conservatism agreeing with Paul.”

Which is a lie, because there are many issues (e.g. defense, foreign policy, abortion, traditional marriage, etc.) on which there isn’t a single prominent, respected conservative who agrees Ron Paul. This is ESPECIALLY visible on the issue of defense, which is understandable that in order to be a conservative you MUST support a strong defense and generous funding for it. Providing generous, adequate funding for a strong defense, not constraining it with disarmament treaties, making sure that the military is adequately trained, housed, AND equipped with the most modern and most lethal weapons America can produce – this is an INTEGRAL, IRREMOVABLE part of conservative philosophy (as opposed to libertarianism) and is the biggest difference that distinguishes us conservatives from libertarians (including Ron Paul).

“Morris’s mistake is definitional. What Morris calls “conservatism” is simply the current conventional Republicanism. One does not necessarily equal the other. Ask Barry Goldwater. Ask Ronald Reagan. Ask Ron Paul.”

Ron Paul is not an authority on anything, let alone on the definition of conservatism, because he’s not a conservative. As for Barry Goldwater and Ronald Reagan – both of them fervently supported a strong defense and a hawkish foreign policy; Goldwater’s policy might’ve even been a little too hawkish (in 1964, he said he would drop a nuclear bomb on Northern Vietnam). Both of them would’ve strongly opposed, and campaign against, Ron Paul if they were alive today (sadly, they’re not).

Moreover, defense spending and the war in Iraq are hardly the only aspects of foreign policy on which Paul is completely at odds with conservatism and conservatives – he’s completely at odds with us conservatism on the entire FP spectrum.

So whom does Hunter quote as an authority on conservatism and its history? None other than the extremely-leftist, anti-defense, anti-Republican, Soros-supported J Street propagandist Peter Beinart of the liberal TDB:

“Here’s where Morris and Gingrich really show their ignorance. Writes The Daily Beast’s Peter Beinart (…)”

Not that I care about what Beinart says, but I’ll refute just one of his Coolidge quotes, namely that “The people have had all the war, all the taxation, and all the military service they want.”

In fact, the public does not support defense cuts: according to multiple polls conducted last year, 57% of Americans oppose any such cuts, and 82% opposed any defense cuts by the Super Committee and the sequester. Military service is voluntary in the United States, yet more people join the military’s ranks than the DOD can accept.

Hunter then lied, trying to whitewash his boss, that:

„Much has been made about the fact that Paul criticized Reagan in 1988 and bolted to run third party out of disgust with the Republican Party. Yet, Paul’s beef was not that he was against the Reagan Revolution, only that it had failed to live up to its promise in terms of shrinking government. Paul was one of only four congressmen to endorse Reagan in 1976. So Paul was one of Reagan’s earliest supporters — and later his criticism was that Reagan wasn’t “Reagan” enough.”

That is utter garbage. That is NOT what Ron Paul was saying at the time. What Paul REALLY criticized and bashed Reagan for were, almost exclusively, his defense buildup and his staunchly anti-Communist global foreign policy. THAT is what Paul bashed Reagan for. THAT is what most of Paul’s farewell letter to the GOP in 1987 was about. Paul, of course, repeated the “defense is a big government project” lie in his letter a few times, and Hunter repeats it like a robot to this day. But it doesn’t change the fact that Hunter’s claim was a lie. Paul couldn’t care less about the size and scope of government; all he cared about was gutting America’s defense.

As for the false claim that the Reagan Revolution “had failed to live up to its promise of shrinking government”, it’s also a lie. Ronald Reagan cut the EPA’s budget by 22% in his first year and reduced spending as a share of GDP, while massively cutting taxes, abolishing wage and price controls, deregulating the oil and railroad industries, abolishing the ban on nuclear fuel recycling, eliminating tons of needless regulations, laying off thousands of bureaucrats in the DOD and further thousands in other agencies, reforming welfare programs, etc. Of course, he did not achieve everything he had hoped for, e.g. abolishing the Education Department and the DOE, which he always advocated. But there is a limit to what a President can achieve without the Congress on his side. Throughout his entire tenure, Reagan was fought fiercely by a House (and from 1987, a Senate) dominated by liberal Democrats such as Tip O’Neill. Reagan was merely a President, not a dictator.

Nonetheless, Ron Paul, together with his buddies Murray Rothbard and Lew Rockwell, slandered Ronald Reagan in the worst possible terms. Leaving aside Paul’s slanderous 1987 letter and his infamous 1988 interview with the Dallas Morning News, Rothbard and Rockwell, with Paul’s tacit approval, called Reagan a “warmonger” and called on the Congress to impeach him and remove him from office. When Reagan left office – but with all honors and with a high popularity rating – Rothbard called him a cretin and claimed that his tenure was “eight dreary, miserable, mind-numbing years”. This was the same Rothbard who was Paul’s intellectual father.

„To this day, Paul remains to the right of Reagan on government size and scope — hardly a “left-wing” position.”

No, he does not and he never was. Ron Paul is to the left of Reagan on these issues. He supports massive pork projects and defends them. He supports transferring tons of money out of the defense budget and into entitlement programs to appease the entitlement class. He also believes that states have the right to impose Big Government and any violations of individual liberties on their citizens – even those perpetrated by the California state government. He’s PERFECTLY FINE with Big Government – as long as it is imposed by states and not the federal government. To those who object, he says “leave your state”. In that regard, he’s indistinguishable from other Big Government Republicans like Mitt Romney.

Hunter then shamefully used Ronald Reagan, whom his boss and his buddies regularly slandered throughout the 1980s and later, as cover for his lunatic boss:

“But where Paul did admire Reagan in the mid-to-late ’80s is where Newt Gingrich and other Republican hawks most certainly did not. When Paul says today that we should always exhaust all diplomatic efforts before going to war — with Iran, for example — Paul’s Republican critics call him “weak” or an “appeaser.” They said the same about Reagan. When Reagan met with Mikhail Gorbachev in 1985, Gingrich called it “the most dangerous summit for the West since Adolf Hitler met with Chamberlain in 1938 at Munich.””

Firstly, Ron Paul never admired Ronald Reagan, especially not during the mid-to-late 1980s, when he constantly spat on him together with his buddies Rothbard and Rockwell. Secondly, Ron Paul is not saying „exhaust all diplomatic efforts before going to war” – he’s saying „no wars ever, not even if America is attacked, because America is always to blade for all of the world’s problems”, as evidenced by his opposition to going to war in Afghanistan in 2001 and his criticism of the US entering WW2. All of his rivals, on the other hand, are saying „exhaust all non-war options, but IF these efforts fail, we MUST be ready to go to war with Iran IF NEED BE.” As George Washington said, „to be prepared for war is one of the most effective means of keeping the peace.”

Thirdly, it is absolutely ridiculous to compare the rational, and, by Soviet standards, liberal Gorbachyov (Hunter can’t even get his name right) to the irrational mullahs ruling Iran, led by Ali Khamenei, and their irrational puppet speaker Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Gorbachyov was willing to make significant concessions and to liberalize the Soviet society. More recently, he has called for free elections and for Putin’s immediate resignation. He did not try to use force to keep Warsaw Pact states subjugated; he agreed to a peaceful dissolution of the Pact. OTOH, the irrational Iranian mullahs are suicidal and fanatical. They have repeatedly stated their desire to attack Israel and the US. They are co-responsible for 9/11 and are the bigest sponsors of Islamic terrorism in the world. If Reagan were President today, he wouldn’t have tried to reason with them. He would’ve dealt with them the same way he dealt with Colonel Qaddafi:

“Despite our repeated warnings, Qaddafi continued his reckless policy of intimidation, his relentless pursuit of terror. He counted on America to be passive. He counted wrong. I warned that there should be no place on Earth where terrorists can rest and train and practice their deadly skills. I meant it. I said that we would act with others, if possible, and alone if necessary to ensure that terrorists have no sanctuary anywhere. Tonight, we have.”

Wasn’t it the Libyan intervention that caused Rothbard and Rockwell to call Reagan a “warmonger” and call for his impeachment?

In any case, Hunter’s pathetic attempt to use Ronald Reagan as a cover for his boss and claim that Paul was a “Reagan admirer” is false and insulting. As are his lectures about the meaning of conservatism and the claim that Paul is a conservative and the most conservative Presidential candidate in the last 50 years – an honor that belongs undisputably to Reagan. Yet, Hunter not only falsely claimed that Reagan was merely “arguably the second most conservative candidate”, he claimed that Ron Paul advocates “strict constitutionalism:

“It could be reasonably argued that Reagan was the second-most conservative person to run for president in the last 50 years after Paul, whose strict constitutionalism no doubt continues to create controversy.”

That is also a blatant lie. Ron Paul is no adherent to constitutionalism. If he was, he would’ve accepted the ENTIRE Constitution as it is, instead of cherry-picking parts of the Constitution that he likes and rejecting those that he doesn’t like, such as the Constitutional authorizations of, and REQUIREMENTS FOR, a strong defense – which Ron Paul ardently opposes – and the Fourteenth Amendment, which incorporated the Bill of Rights against the states, thus protecting individual liberties. Paul ardently opposes both, which means he’s no constitutionalist and no adherer to the Constitution.
Ron Paul is not a conservative. Not by a long-shot. As Dick Morris has said, he’s an ultra-left wing politician who merely happens to agree with conservatives on a few issues.

But even a blind pig will find an earful of corn once in a while.

If you support defense cuts – let alone those massive defense cuts that Paul and Coburn advocate – you are not a conservative. Not by a long shot.

If you support a foreign policy of isolationism or appeasement, you are not a conservative.

If you believe that Big Government and abortion on demand are okay, as long as they’re imposed by state governments, you are most certainly not a conservative.

Mr Hunter, your lectures about conservatism could not be further from the truth.

http://dailycaller.com/2011/12/30/ron-paul-is-the-most-conservative-presidential-candidate/

http://www.defense.gov/releases/release.aspx?releaseid=7046

http://www.bls.gov/data/inflation_calculator.htm

Posted in Constitutions, Military issues, Politicians, World affairs | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Why defense spending should NOT be reduced

Posted by zbigniewmazurak on December 1, 2010


Many self-named fiscal conservatives claim that because of America’s current fiscal woes (a $1.29 trillion annual budget deficit and a national debt of almost $14 trillion), defense spending should be reduced – deeply reduced, according to some of them. These advocates of defense spending cuts can be divided into these groups:

1) Those who believe that the defense budget should be the only category of spending that should be reduced;
2) Those who believe that the defense budget should be the biggest, but not the only, spending category facing reductions;
3) Those who believe that all categories of federal spending should face equal or similar reductions;
4) Those who wish to abolish the federal government altogether.

All four groups are wrong. Defense spending should not be reduced even by one dollar per year. Why? For several reasons.

Firstly, defense is not an option, but rather a constitutional OBLIGATION of the federal government, as well as one of the reasons why the federal government was established in the first place. It’s not an option that the federal government might decide to pursue or not to pursue. The federal government is obliged to provide for the common defense, as per the Constitution.

Secondly, defense spending is NOT to blame for America’s fiscal woes. It constitutes only 14.87% of the total federal budget and a paltry 3.65% of GDP (FY2010 data). Total military spending, including the GWOT supplemental appropriation, constituted 18.5% of the total federal budget and just 4.5% of GDP as of FY2010. Obama’s proposed FY2011 federal budget would reduce the DOD’s share of the total federal budget to 14.31% (excluding GWOT spending). American GDP per capita is $46,000 per year, so 3.65% of GDP means that the annual defense budget costs the average American only $1700 per year.

From FY2007 to FY2011, defense spending has increased by $59 bn, from $475 bn to $534 bn, while total federal spending has splurged from $2729 bn to $3591 bilion and the budget deficit has grown from $161 bn to $1290 billion. So post-FY2007 defense spending growth accounts for only 6.844% of the total federal spending growth and only 5.22% of the total budget deficit growth witnessed since FY2007, when the budget deficit was small ($161 bn as of FY2007). The post-FY2001 trend is equally instructive. According to John R. Guardiano of the American Spectator, only 20% of the total federal spending growth witnessed since FY2001 was represented by defense spending growth.

It is evident to any honest person that the DOD is not to blame for America’s fiscal woes.

Thirdly, defense spending is too low already. The truth is that the US military can’t cope with less money than it already has. The FY2010 defense budget constituted 3.65% of GDP. During the entire Cold War, America’s defense budget was larger, except the FY1948 defense warchest (3.50% of GDP). The US military is now facing the necessary task of replacing the vast majority of its equipment: its warships, fighterplanes, attack aircraft, ASW planes, EW aircraft, tankers, cargoplanes, AWACSes, gunships, CSAR helicopters and APCs. These weapons are obsolete and most of them (as well as the military’s tanks, IFVs and attack helicopters) have been worn out as a result of 9 years of continous war. The US military absolutely needs this 3.65% of GDP to replace its weapons, maintain its current force structure (at least the structure of combat units), operate its weapons and bases, and prepare itself for new threats. Don’t believe me? Ask the Secretary of Defense or Rep. Paul Ryan.

That is not to say that every single dollar of the annual defense budget is spent properly or that the DOD can’t afford to abolish any of the items in its annual budget. But only non-combat related items in its budget (e.g. unneeded bases, nonmilitary projects, excessive benefits, oversized bureaucracies and unneeded reports) should be reduced or abolished. Moreover, the DOD needs the savings that would be generated this way to reinvest them in crucial equipment. The Secretary of Defense, as well as defense experts from the HF and the AEI, have said so.

Fourth, contrary to the often-repeated myth that any solution to America’s fiscal woes must include defense spending reductions, the truth is that the federal budget can be balanced without any defense spending cuts. How? By implementing my Blueprint for a Balanced Budget, a logical result of my Blueprint for a Smaller Government.

http://zbigniewmazurak.wordpress.com/2010/04/27/the-blueprint-for-a-balanced-federal-budget-2nd-ed/

http://www.colony14.net/id117.html

These blueprints have proven that a balanced budget and maintaining defense spending at the current level (3.65% of GDP) are not mutually-exclusive goals. Unlike most so-called fiscal conservatives, I have provided a blueprint of how to balance the federal budget without defense spending cuts. Most of them haven’t even presented any plan to balance the budget at all. (Please note that even if the entire DOD was abolished, the federal government would still be facing a $814-bn annual budget deficit.)

So please don’t listen to those who say that defense spending should be reduced. It shouldn’t be cut. If the Congress really wants to balance the federal budget, it should significantly reduced the FG’s bloated domestic spending.

————————————————————————————————————————-

IMPORTANT DEFINITIONS

Defense spending (=the defense budget): The annual core DOD budget which finances the military itself, and is supposed to make it possible for the US to build and maintain a strong defense.

GWOT supplemental spending (appropriation): The annual supplemental appropriation used to finance the GWOT, specifically, the Afghan war and the deployment of American troops to Iraq. It has nothing to do with the task of building and maintaining a strong defense.

Total federal budget: The entire federal budget, proposed by the President and approved (or rejected) by the Congress. Includes both obligatory spending (entitlement programs and debt interest payments) and discretionary spending (which includes defense spending and GWOT supplemental spending).

Domestic spending: Money spent on nonmilitary purposes in the United States. This term encompasses entitlements, debt interest payments, and discretionary domestic spending (e.g. the DHS, the DOT and the DHUD).

Posted in Economic affairs, Military issues | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

My opinion on DOD budgets

Posted by zbigniewmazurak on June 28, 2010


Two days ago, I rebutted the lies of an anti-defense liberal, Josh Burro, who wrote a litany of lies about defense spending, defense budgets, and DOD equipment programs. I also defended the topline DOD budget figures for FY2010 and FY2011 (planned) as necessary to protect America. I wish to comment on that a little further.

It is not possible for the DOD (given the low value of the dollar and inflation) to maintain a strong military on-the-cheap, with a microscopic defense budget, without a defense budget to the tune of at least $534 bn (in today’s dollars), i.e. 3.65% of GDP. So called “defense-on-the-cheap”, a cheap military or “providing the same defense at a lower cost” is not possible. That is a fiscal fact. Only in the alternate universe called Washington DC is “defense-on-the-cheap” possible.

Many reputable defense experts, such as John Tkacik, have estimated that the real topline figure needed by the DOD is 4% of GDP. Both of these figures are small. (During the entire Cold War except FY1948, America spent a larger amount of money on defense than 4% of GDP.)

I believe that it is ridiculous to claim that defense budgets (enacted or planned) which equal 3.65% of GDP or 3.75% of GDP are excessive.

I believe that the aggregate DOD topline budget figures for FY2010 and FY2011 ($534 bn budgeted for FY2010 and $549 planned for FY2011) are necessary.

Do I believe that every particular item in the DOD budget is necessary? No. I believe that Gulfstream-III VIP jets, the Alternative Engine Program, the VIP helicopter program, and 32 large bases are unnecessary. I believe that personnel costs and defense health program costs are way too high, and that overhead costs and bureaucracies of the DOD are too large.

But I also believe that any savings made at the DOD must be REINVESTED in the DOD. I oppose any reductions of the topline budget figure (i.e. the total size of the defense budget). I also believe that every current weapon program of the DOD, except the LCS program, is necessary.

I also believe that defense is the most important of all issues, that it is the most important task of any government, and that no government can maintain a strong defense without an appropriately-sized defense budget. Hence, I believe that defense spending must never be reduced.

The US Constitution clearly states that one of the roles of the federal government is to “provide for the common defense” and to “protect them [the states] against invasion”. It is NOT the role of the federal government to dictate school curriculums, protect unions, build bridges to nowhere and highways that states don’t want, maintain local transit systems, build useless high-speed rail lines, subsidize agriculture, provide welfare rolls to welfare bums and welfare queens, or decide which products Americans can buy.

But  – as the Constitution clearly states – the federal government IS called on to “provide for the common defense” and to “protect them [the states] against invasion”. And any failure of the federal government to execute that obligation is a violation of the Constitution.

The federal government shall not, and should not, save money on defense, its constitutional obligation.

The need for a government that could provide for the common reason was the principal reason why the federal government was created in the first place. This fact is told by the Constitution (whose preamble states that the American people ordained this Constitution “to form a more perfect Union, provide for the common defense, provide for the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty”) and the writings of James Madison (the principal author of the Constitution) and Alexander Hamilton. They explained that the Confederation (1783-1789) was inadequate, and that a federal government was needed to provide for the common defense.

Today, the federal government is doing everything EXCEPT providing for the common defense. It is neglecting its duty. Yet, Burro believes that the small budget the DOD now has, and the small budget that the DOD has requested, are big, excessive and unnecessary. I beg to differ. And the facts back me, not him.

Posted in Military issues | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

The myth that Romney is a conservative

Posted by zbigniewmazurak on July 17, 2008


Romney is not a conservative because he’s a liberal. On every issue, Romney has delivered liberal speeches and he has a liberal record. His claim that he could bring together the Reagan coalition of military conservatives, fiscal conservatives and social conservatives. He won’t get the votes of any of these 3 groups, because he’s a socioeconomicomilitary liberal.
Several exemplary liberal policies of Romney:
1) Abortion: Romney said that abortion should be legal according to the American law, and his record confirmed that.
2) SSM: Romney claimed he’s a proponent of the Federal Marriage Amendment, yet he did not ban SSM when he governed MA, nor does he have any other conservative marriage-related record.
3) Taxes: Romney increased fees by $700 mn as a Massachusetts governor. He doesn’t favour the FairTax.
4) The UN: Romney claimed he would work with “a reformed UN”, even though the UN is unreformable.
5) The US military: Romney would spend only 4% of GDP on the US military, which is an insufficient level. Moreover, Romney’s corporation, Bain Capital, was actually collaborating with the Chicomm military to produce weapons for that military. Romney is a traitor. Moreover, Romney refused to admit that the Iraqi war was a good decision (http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=PURfrORhWPc&feature=related).
6) Torture: Romney has refused to answer whether waterboarding is torture or even to say what is torture.
7) America’s infrastructure: Romney opposed Huckabee’s infrastructure-related plan which would’ve modernised and expanded America’s transport-related network. Unless America’s infrastructure is modernised and grown, the US economy will not grow any faster than now, and America will not become independent from foreign oil.
8) The 2nd Amendment to the US Constitution: Romney is an advocate of infringements of that constitutional rights. He said in 2002: “We do have tough gun laws in Massachusetts. I support them”. And his laws reflected that declaration.
9) Veterans: Romney insulted Robert Dole, a WW2 hero.
Today, I’ve compiled this table of eight Republican Presidential candidates from “eight” – i.e. the year 2008 – who were measured by how conservative they are (these 8 candidates were judged by both their records and their speeches). Romney fared the worst, because he was the least conservative of all eight candidates. His conservative score was merely 27% (15/54).
By endorsing Romney, NRO editors, Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and Laura Ingraham proved that they are not conservatives, but liberals.
Several myths about Romney have been posted on AT. I will now dispel them:
1) “Mitt had to govern a very left liberal state with dems running both state houses.” No. He volunteered to govern it because it was the only state where he, an ultraliberal, would’ve been accepted as a governor. He’s a liberal, so MA was a perfect state for him.
2) “Mitt on the other hand has shown that he can work”
He has produced no good results. Bain Capital was collaborating with the Chicomms – enemies of the American people. The 2002 Olympiad has burdened SLC with a debt. As governor of MA, Romney introduced Hillarycare (taxpayer-funded HC), preserved women’s right to kill children, and preserved infringements on the 2nd Amendment to the US Constitution.
3) “Romney can bring together social conservatives, military conservatives and fiscal conservatives.” He can’t. As I’ve already proven, he isn’t a social conservative, nor a military conservative, nor a fiscal conservative.

Posted in Constitutions, Freeways, Politicians | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

A complete list of my political proposals related to the US

Posted by zbigniewmazurak on June 23, 2008


Proposed base nomenclature
Proposed infrastructure plan
Proposed Acts
Proposed budgetary plan for the US Federal Government
Proposed amendments to the US Constitution
Proposed Federal Budget Amendments
Proposed plan that would manage the US military’s plane fleet
Proposed military plan
Proposed SALT III Treaty

Posted in Constitutions, Freeways, Military issues, Uncategorized, World affairs | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

 
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