Both parties must be willing to cut their “sacred cows” from the bloated federal budget. Democrats need to put social welfare spending on the table and Republicans need to stop protecting Pentagon spending at all costs. Or else we will pass on a mountain of debt to the next generation.
At a time when our nation is in a dire fiscal crisis, we cannot afford to neglect examining Pentagon spending. There’s no good reason that spending by the largest and most expensive department in the federal government has been isolated from serious scrutiny.
The Pentagon still has a “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy when it comes to its spending. Taxpayers deserve to know how their money is being spent. Despite a 1990 federal law requiring all federal departments to complete an annual audit, the Department of Defense has never been formally audited.
Why not? Because the Pentagon spends money so fast that it cannot keep track of its own expenditures. Seriously.
The Pentagon has made a decades-long promise to get their financial books in order by 2017, but that’s not looking likely. Approximately one third of the accounting entries in the Pentagon’s budget are untraceable, according to the Government Accountability Office.
Too many Republicans are afraid to cut the Pentagon budget for fear of being perceived as “weak on defense.” But a large chunk of the Pentagon budget has absolutely nothing to do with defending the United States. Like all other federal government department budgets, the Pentagon budget is filled with wasteful programs and corporate welfare.
Big spending politicians don’t turn into angels when negotiating the military budget. It is absurd to believe that a budget passed by Congress is not susceptible to unnecessary spending and pet projects.
Julie Borowski is a Policy Analyst at FreedomWorks, an organization dedicated to lower taxes, less government, and more freedom. Her writings on economic policy have appeared in numerous newspapers and online outlets. She is on the Board of Advisors for the Coalition to Reduce Spending and she launched an independent YouTube channel called TokenLibertarianGirl in June 2011.
She was previously selected to be a Charles G. Koch Summer Fellow with the Institute for Humane Studies where she worked at the Center for Competitive Politics. Most recently, she was a government affairs associate at Americans for Tax Reform.
Julie has volunteered for political candidates in Kentucky and in her home state of Maryland. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Frostburg State University in May 2010 where she studied political science, economics and international studies. She is now located in Washington, D.C.