No Defense for NYT Math

James Carafano /

I am sure the folks at The New York Times can add, but they make no sense when they talk about defense dollars. The latest headline trumpets, “Proposed Military Spending Is Highest Since WWII” . Here are the numbers that really put defense spending in their proper perspective. When the United States fought WWII, war costs accounted for about 46 percent of GDP. Today the Pentagon costs us about 4 percent of GDP.

It is equally stupid to argue that defense spending is at the root cause of our economic woes. During the Cold War, the US averaged just under 8 percent of GDP on defense spending and our economy was half the size it is today. So it is silly to argue that defense spending is the problem when we are spending half of what we did twenty years ago in an economy over twice as large.

We have to be deadly serious about all these paper thin excuses for arguments to curtail defense spending—they are simply “cop-outs” for government to forgo its most important and fundamental obligation to the American people: to “provide for the common defense.” Our men and women in uniform need a fully funded military so that when we put them in harm’s way they will have the support and equipment to get the job done and come home safe.