I have got to answer JFoster
My mother warned me about arguing or discussing with certain kinds of people, but there was entirely too much disinformation in one comment to ignore. And lastly, I have to say that people who think they know everything are a real pain in butt to those of us who do.
Now, first, about my connection to reality and the legalization of Marijuana– The commentor should go to his Wiki and read about the drug policy in the Netherlands. Then I would invite him to live in my world.
Next, about defense spending– True, Social Security and Medicare are about the same size as the amount we are told is spent upon defense. The difference is that Medicare and Social Security are governmental TRUST funds. They are NOT paid for through income tax. They are supported by direct contributions from those who benefit from them. [Except that is for illegal aliens using someone else’s social security number. They pay but do not collect]. Hence, Social Security and Medicare do not belong in the Federal Budget Allocations, whereas Defense spending is an appropriation and is 60+% of our budget.
If our spending was in line with the rest of the world we could easily balance our budget. Just about every country in Europe, for example, spends less that 2% of its GDP on defense. Most are around 1% and the whole European Union together only spends 1.69%. We spend 4.65%. It is this imbalance that makes it easy for the top 1-2% to keep us busy fighting each other, rather than focusing on them, the real cause of the problem.
Clearly if we reduced our defense spending by 80% or more, our budget would look better. I can’t help but think the world would be better off, too.
I will not get into a discussion of the fairness of a progressive tax. One either believes it is an equitable way to spread the cost of government or doesn’t. That is what we are supposed to have now, except the tax breaks that Bush pushed through put the largest burden of today’s tax structure on the middle class. If everyone and every corporation paid their fair share there would be enough to do everything that we should be doing—offering Universal Health Care to every man, woman, and child in America; offering higher education or vocational education to everyone who can make use of it at an affordable price. We must raise the standard of living for everyone so that families can spend more time together. With more support in the home, educating America might become easier. That would entail some major income redistribution. It is time.
And thank you for reading my blog.