The clock keeps ticking.

So, what is all this nationalistic rhetoric going to cost the US taxpayers? Bush has requested $439.3 billion for this year’s Defense Budget. That’s 18% of the proposed 2006 budget of $8,133 billion according to this story:

WASHINGTON (AP) – President Bush’s 2007 budget seeks a nearly 5 percent increase in Defense Department spending, to $439.3 billion, with significantly more money for weapons programs, according to senior Pentagon officials and documents obtained by The Associated Press.

While 18% of our national budget may seem like a lot, $439.3 billion is less than the true cost of our defense budget as described in this story from 2003.

Not to mention the difference between proposed and actual expenditures. (I noticed the Department of Defense has yet to post the actuals from 2004 and 2005, at the bottom of the page here.)

What is this money going to be spent on? In Camille’s world, it would be spent on transporting our troops back home. In the real world, it is earmarked for Army personnel, childcare and tuition assistance, the National Guard, the Army’s Future Combat System, 3,100 Humvees, 100 transport vehicles, 81 helicopters, 25 fighters, and a submarine.

And, finally, how are we going to pay for this? The short answer is, we’re not. As shown in the afore-mentioned White House budget tables, the United States Gross Federal Debt is projected to increase from last year’s 38.6% of the US $12,042 billion GDP (Gross Domestic Product) to 39.8% or $8,133 billion in 2006 and ultimately to $10,564 billion by 2009.

With all this money going towards stabilizing the Mid East Oil markets, you would expect the price of fossil fuel at the pump to be going down. But instead, it keeps rising. This explains why 2005 was a record year for Exxon profits. Which, as Exxon explains, “are comparable with the national average.”

By Camille Armantrout

Camille lives with her soul mate Bob in the back woods of central North Carolina where she hikes, gardens, cooks, and writes.