Life as we know it is about to end. The latest budget crisis is about to result in sequestration (WE REALLY MEAN IT THIS TIME) and a 4 trillion budget will not be able to find 44 billion in cuts so the whole house of cards will collapse.
One of the ways to spread the pain around it to furlough the DoD civil service. it is estimated that this will save 4 billion. That’s a lot of money. Oh, but that is spread out over ten years. so it is really only 400 million. I can save that much by cancelling just one Army program on my desk.
That and three other programs totalling in the billions of dollars are only required because the Obama administration is squeamish about using cluster munition. So the SECDEF signed a policy forcing us to get rid of all of ours. FOR NO GOOD REASON AT ALL. This choice by a political appointee led to a mini arms race to design and field replacement products to fill that gap. This choice costs the taxpayers about 7 Billion to replace things that are already perfectly good. And despite talks of furloughing civil service (effectively cutting their pay by 10%), no one is talking about overturning that choice, or even delaying implementing it for another ten years.
Also, my office is not doing any official travel. Even trips to Aberdeen, (commuting distance from here) are cancelled. But other offices are still flying people to Europe and Hawaii for mission essential “meetings”. Also, all of the military officers who are due for it will still be getting sent to fully funded graduate school programs.
Finally: Afghanistan: 60+ Billion each year. Just stop it. Drag all that stuff back home. be done with it.
Don’t get me wrong. I have no fear that the country will get along just fine paying me ten percent less. It is just that I can see plenty of money being wasted and more in the pipeline to be wasted while the HQ staff talks about spreading pain that isn’t necessary.