Global Economics

Are We Going to Stop Showing the Flag?


Are We Going to Stop Showing the Flag?

…Other mandatory spending and all discretionary spendingfrom 12½ percent of GDP in 2011 to 5¾ percent in 2030 and 3¾ percent in 2050.

–Joyce Manchester and Julie Topoleski, The Long-Term Budgetary Impact of Paths for Federal Revenues and Spending Specified by Chairman Ryan, Congressional Budget Office, March 2012.

Somewhere in the vicinity of the youngest offspring’s 40th birthday, there will be a 54 percent reduction in government spending ex. health and Social Security items.

Upon my 98th birthday, I will celebrate a 70 percent reduction in other stuff. (This avoids the reality in 2030 and/or 2050 that the U.S. Post Office will lose an Apollo space program per quarter.)

Those to the Left vent upon being made aware of the CBO’s analysis of the Ryan budget. See Peter Orszag’s Bloomberg View to gain perspective, whatever your politics.

Those supportive are just silent. (One oft-quoted and Right economist suggested I not pay attention to such details.)

The USS Wisconsin was launched on Pearl Harbor Day, 1943, for $100 million and is still paying dividends as political stage. The being-built Gerald R. Ford-class aircraft carrier is a reported $9,000 million without R&D cost. That is about $650 million in 1943 dollars, according to Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis math.

I respectfully suggest the nostalgia for another place and simpler time obscures the inflation-adjusted cost of both technological improvement and American responsibilities.

Perhaps, the President’s handlers will orchestrate an Obama/Biden event starboard of the half-built CVN-78, Newport News, Va.

Let me cut to the chase: Are we going to stop building boats? Are we going to stop showing the flag? Discuss.

Keene hosts Bloomberg Surveillance 7-10 a.m. ET on 1130 AM in the New York metro area and nationally on SiriusXM 113.

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