I suggest the public starts doing some reading on the realities of Defense spending and the estimates on the coming VA need in the coming two generations, which some folks estimate to be in the $10 trillion range.
As for Defense spending, our budget is largest than the next 15 countries in the word and is 35% of the world’s spending. My guess is that our allocations are way out of whack. We cannot afford an all- volunteer armed forces without intense considerations regarding PTSD which is afflicting more and more of our forces, reflective of multiple tours. We need to have a draft for the Army and we have to rotate men with one year of service in a combat zone. As for our Carrier fleet, it is very expensive and we have been forced to cut back worldwide assignments to the lowest point in 25 years.
Operating a Nimitz-class carrier runs about $298 million per year, the Government Accountability Office estimated in a 1997 study. One can just imagine what it runs today! The current carrier fleet is made up entirely of Nimitz-class carriers, with the lone ship of the new Ford-class still undergoing sea trials.
Only about 15% of the US Navy’s aircraft carriers have been deployed in 2018. The Navy has not seen rates this low since 1992, just after the collapse of the Soviet Union and the conclusion of the Cold War. In the Middle East, where the US is battling Islamic insurgents, there has not been an aircraft carrier there since March, when the USS Theodore Roosevelt left the region.
Signs of potential trouble appeared a couple of years ago. The aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower left the Middle East in December 2016 after launching hundreds of airstrikes on the terrorist group ISIS in Iraq and Syria, Fox News reported. The Ike’s return to port reportedly marked the first time since the end of World War II that the US did not have at least one aircraft carrier deployed, a situation that lasted for about a week.
Maintenance overruns due to backlogs at public shipyards have cost the Navy dearly in terms of readiness, as these facilities fall farther and farther behind. Between 2000 and 2016, America’s carrier force lost 1,300 operational days, the equivalent of seven six-month deployments, USNI News noted, citing a 2017 Government Accountability Office report. Measuring from Fiscal Year 2015, the Navy lost roughly a year’s worth of operational days for its aircraft carriers.
The USS Dwight D. Eisenhower has been in the shop for maintenance well beyond its expected February 2018 delivery date. The ship is expected to be ready for deployment in 2019, meaning it will have been in maintenance three times longer than anticipated, USNI News reported Monday.
I hope you understand the cost of all your jingoistic fantasies. How are you going to operate this huge machine with tax cuts? I think you should understand the “guns and butter” equation. We have certain obligations, all around the world, regarding threats from Russia, China, the Middle East, and the freedom of the seas, we don’t have the Do-Re-Me (money). You want increases in wages, and mass unionization. But, you have zero clue on how that will spill back on all levels of taxation, especially on the local level. On top of that, you want and support economic isolation through draconian tariffs. Besides that, interest rates are tanking and the DJIA has lost almost 40% of its gains since Trump was inaugurated- DJIA high water mark was 25,724, today it is around 22,800. This month’s performance has been the worst for any month since 1931. The S&P 500 closed at its lowest level since October of 2017, the Nasdaq finished at its lowest since November of 2017, while the Dow closed at lowest level since March 23, according to Dow Jones Market Data.