Rapid Fire August 9, 2012: Agreeing to Disagree
- When you scrub the Pentagon’s budget hard enough, you find money that was not spent and can either be de-obligated, reallocated through rescissions, or has to be returned to the Treasury (in the case of expired accounts [PDF]). This happens on the margins of budgets but the sums involved still amount to billions of dollars.
- House Armed Services Committee member Roscoe Bartlett [R-MD] would like some of his Republican colleagues to tone it down on sequestration, though he agrees that cutting the budget indiscriminately would be “totally devastating.” Bartlett’s seat appears far from secure.
- The libertarian CATO think tank brought a macro perspective [PDF] to the sequestration debate. They refute the idea that reducing the defense budget would have a significant impact on the economy as a whole.
“NATO nations have few if any plans to mobilize or reconstitute large-scale combat forces should the strategic environment change. This is a serious risk.”
- Apparently, trying to come up with scenarios to address China’s booming, opaque military budgets and expansive territorial claims is just the “military-industrial complex’s self-serving fantasy.” OK then. For more even-keeled context, the latest CRS report [PDF] on US-China relations and related policy issues.