Wednesday, July 26, 2017
[Excerpt] In May 2012, TomDispatch featured a piece by Chris Hellman and Mattea Kramer, both then analysts at the National Priorities Project, headlined “War Pay: The Nearly $1 Trillion National Security Budget.” The two of them ran through the figures for the cumulative annual budget for what we still mysteriously call “national security.” In other words, they looked beyond the monumental Pentagon budget and found that the total for all such funding was at the time closing in on a trillion dollars a year. ($931 billion, to be exact.)
Strangely, though, in mainstream reportage while you’ll see discussion of what Congress is likely to pony up in any given year for the Pentagon and some associated activities, I doubt you’ll ever find a figure for total national security expenditures. In fact, I’m ready to make a modest bet that, outside of the technical literature, in the five years since the Hellman-Kramer article, you would have a tough time finding such a cumulative number in the mainstream world for what we (that is, “we the people”) actually spend to support an ever more powerful national security state. Meanwhile, that state within a state continues its relentless post-9/11 expansion, as it officially girds itself for the eternal fight against a single threat to American “safety,” one that holds only the most modest of actual dangers for Americans: terrorism .... [End of Excerpt]
Read more of Tom's introduction, then push onward for the featured article at TomDispatch.