Is the current U.S. defense budget too high?
At just under 600 billion, it isn't high at all. In fact, the actual defense budget is only 3 percent of the discretionary budget.
America has deep pockets, and a wonderful bank named China. America borrows from China to help pay for the entitlement portion of the American budget. The entitlement portion of the budget is a swollen, gargantuan, enormous, rotten portion of the discretionary budget that weighs in at over 2.5 trillion dollars.
That portion of the budget is unsustainable. That portion of the budget is definitely to high.
The 600 billion dollar military budget is actually pretty reasonable considering America's wallet, and how much we could actually be spending on the military.
Don't forget, the military gives back in an endless variety of ways - a majority of today's technology is only here because of military R&D and development contracts. There's also a permanent world peace only because America can bitch-slap every nation on earth. That's always a bonus. Just think of America's military as a mother - she keeps all the boys and girls playing nice.
The entitlement budget on the other hand, gives nothing back. Ever. It just takes more and more each year.
I hope this helps!
Good luck out there!
In no uncertain terms:
All these people talking about ‘context'. Why do you think your country needs to spend that much in defense in the first place? Could it have anything to do with your foreign policy? could it have anything to do with your priorities with respect to education and domestic infrastructure?
Did you know it will be cheaper to build schools and institutions in the middle east?
You can make all the kind of excuses you want, it is completely unnecessary to spend $600B on armament when half of that would get the job done, and the other half will do INCREDIBLE wonders for your foreign policy, domestic programs and moral outlook around the world. IF you started shipping food (which we disproportionately waste already) to places that are probably hostile to US, shipping social amenities to the countries that you CLAIM are trying to harm you, that would do more for your safety than money.
Emphatically YES. We spend more than the next 10 countries Combined. To what end?
IMO, that money would be better spent Domestically, on little things like Housing/Healthcare/Education/Infrastucture.
Maybe the millenials will get our countries priorities in order!
Well, it depends of course. It depends on what you want the US military to do, because then that of course dictates what capabilities it must sustain, and that in turn dictates what the budget should be.
I believe the US military is too powerful for our own good. Our leaders are tempted to use it as an all purpose Swiss Army Knife. Instead of diplomacy or building real alliances to accomplish specific goals they send in the Marines, or the Seals, or the bombers.
This is part of why the Middle East is such a mess - we have used our military over and over again without even understanding the consequences. We keep thinking that because our troops cannot be defeated in battle (a practical reality) that we can achieve our goals by deploying them and everyone will suddenly act the way we want.
It doesn't work.
So yes, I think the budget is too big, but really the mission, the aims are too big. A smaller military might help us be much more successful and peaceful.
No. Or at least not the way you are asking.
It's too high for Canada. It's too high for every other nation in the world because not only is their GDP smaller, they dont have the commitments to othernations for their protection. Other nations dont need a large military, just large enough to keep the OPPFOR from running over the border. They dont need a large bluewater navy because we supply it.
Strictly speaking, we dont need it to defend our borders much, either. Canada and Mexico are friends. We might need our missiles and air force, our Coast Guard. But since 60% of our goods arrive by ship---whups, typo, it's over 90%-- we need to keep the sea lanes clear. That means a robust Navy.
So you tell me what you think needs to be cut. Then win the argument not with Quora peeps, but with Congress who have factories in their states. If you win that argument, you are a better man than I am, Gunga Din.
This is one of those unfinished questions. Is it too high "in relation to the missions it needs to perform?" Is it too high "considering the national security threat assessment?" Is it too high "in light of the resource limitations in other parts of the budget?" Et al.
You see questions like this require context and unless context is provided, the answer is meaningless. Still you will receive answers from those with opinions, and most likely they will provide you their ideas on the context, but since it's your question, what is your context?