The left has been consistently outspoken in calls to cut defense spending, for years and years. And we now have the ‘whipped puppy brigade’ of the GOP, joining the chorus. The ‘go-along-to-get-along’ gang is “reaching out” across the aisle to barter deals with democrats on massive cuts to future defense budgets. Oh, they can justify this because we have to make spending cuts somewhere, and as the liberals tell us, the defense spending is way out of control. It’s the single biggest government expenditure they whine.

Moderate establishment republicans agree that we can reach a bipartisan agreement to cooperate with the radical anti-military hippy left to gut the military. We spend way too much on the “war machine” anyway and why do we need it if we’re not going to be meddling in the affairs of others anymore? Yes… let’s slash the hell out of defense spending because that’s the smart thing to do!

The “thoughtful people” have spoken, and those of us who object are just hawkish interventionists who want to wage war all over the world. New world order neocons who want to spend trillions on a massive military to wage worldwide wars.

It’s an important distinction to make, the one truly constitutional responsibility of the federal government is to protect the citizenry with a strong national defense. So it stands to reason this would be our greatest expense as a federal government. No other expenditure comes close because no other expenditure should come close. It’s the government’s main responsibility.

The pragmatic truth of the matter is this: When we cut the defense budget, we affect real world outcomes and trigger unintended consequences. Aside from the important aspects of remaining strong and viable as a military defense force for national security reasons, there is another side to this that no one wants to acknowledge. Cuts mean bases close around the nation. Everywhere this happens, it results in thousands and thousands of non-military jobs being lost, entire towns drying up and blowing away. Mass devastation of local economies happen as a result of the military base closing. Does anyone have a contingency plan for this when it happens?

We can talk about defense cuts, but the reality is a large chunk of spending is allocated to the veterans, which we’re simply not going to touch. People will say; “let’s close all these bases around the world!” Well, many of those are there as a practical matter of treaties and agreements made through NATO. Are we going to pull out of NATO or abandon allies in Europe? What are the geopolitical ramifications of that? No one really asks, we just hear knee-jerk reactionaries lament without thinking about it or addressing it. Actions have consequences.

Now we can eliminate some weapons contracts, but again, defense contractors employ real Americans. Not saying there aren’t some areas we can and should cut, but do we have any plan for what to do about the thousands of people who will be put out of a job in the process? And when they are laid off, are their towns and communities going to be able to survive? Does anyone think about this, or do they even care?

I am very much a small government conservative, and I realize we must dramatically cut our budget and stop running up massive debt. I even believe there is plenty of waste and redundancy in the defense budget, which needs to be eliminated. But these decisions should be weighed very carefully and we should avoid the feverish desire of the left to just go on a slashing spree with the defense budget, because there are dramatic and devastating consequences which affect real Americans.

When we cut a few billion dollars in federal social entitlement programs, it affects those who get the benefits, but it doesn’t destroy local economies and put thousands out of work. It doesn’t result in unintended consequences, it doesn’t destroy trade relations and diplomatic relations. It hurts, it’s a sacrifice, but it’s a much more desirable outcome than massively slashing the defense budget. Plus, when we are invaded by Communist China, the welfare recipients aren’t going to be much use in national defense.