Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Commander-in-Chief anti-military?

Yesterday Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, Rep. Howard P. "Buck" McKeon (R-CA) told AEI that cuts in projected defense spending reflect Obama's negative view of the US military. Thoughts? Mr. O did once say that US forces aren't the best, but "one of the finest."


TJE said...

Lachlan would be proud of you Cara. PBM, not so much.

Will McCurry said...

I don't know how you could argue that a President who has shown nothing but support for the troops is anti-military. Yes he withdrew all combat troops from Iraq but Obama remains committed to fighting the "good" war in Afghanistan. Obama has raised the Pentagon's military budget from $528 billion in fiscal year 2010 to $553 by FY 2012.
Now how can you say that a President who is currently engaged in fighting a war and still maintaining and strengthening our military's presence is "anti-military"?

You want to talk about hypocrisy, lets look at Mckleon's record. His website claims that government spending is "way out of control" and that we need to slash our deficit immediately. Well it would seem to me that the best place to start cutting discretionary spending would be from the largest slice of discretionary spending in our national budget, aka the military's budget. Yet Mckleon prattles on about how his spending cuts to non-security related items might make some sort of incremental dent in the national deficit. I highly doubt it.

Will McCurry said...

also if someone wants to teach me how to insert hyperlinks i would greatly appreciate it hahah

Michael Koester said...

I admit I do not know specifically what the defense cuts entail, but I think calling a president that enacted the Post-9/11 GI Bill and oversaw continuous increases in the defense budget over the past three years "anti-military" is extreme. (Not to mention a further quote from Mr. Obama, where he described the U.S. military as "best-trained, the best-led, the best-equipped fighting force in history.") It's hard for me to understand how Mr. McKeon can say the President "treats American power as the principal adversary, not ally, to world peace,” after the President's recent intervention on behalf of Libyan rebels despite intense criticism from the right and the left in Congress.

I agree with Will: at a time when every part of the federal budget should be under intense scrutiny, why shouldn't a $693 billion budget come under serious scrutiny? When the representative states, "Power in benevolent hands is a virtue, not a vice," I take that to mean McKeon feels the President is denying the military "power" by proposing a reduction in defense spending, and is thus "anti-military". But a large budget does not necessarily equate power and effectiveness. If the President's proposal forces the Pentagon to prioritize, and ask itself what can and should be cut from the largest piece of federal discretionary spending, hopefully the result will be what's best for both America's homeland and financial security. That's not "anti" anything, that's trying to be fiscally sound and ensure American prosperity (and maximize our economic and international power).

Using the term “anti-military” risks unnecessarily offending our troops and veterans, and therefore I do not think it should be loosely applied. We should save such a term for hardcore anti-war activists, or the Westboro Baptist Church, but not President Obama.