The US Congress will meet in September and October and there will be a lame duck session(s) in November and December. And then automatic cuts to budgets loom at the beginning of January 2013—four months from now.
We do have to be careful of plausible, but unsophisticated arguments. For example, in one of the OpEds, Mr Larry Korb said:
Third, ending this indiscriminate growth will force the Pentagon to manage its funds more carefully. Over the past decade, the Pentagon squandered $46 billion on weapons it later canceled, and let half its procurement programs balloon beyond their original budgets.Part of developing defense programs is that some will survive and some will not. In the 1940s and 1950s there were competitive programs, an approach that was used to achieve the best products through competition. It did result in cancellations. The other side of the problem is the ballooning of cost. As we look at the Big Dig we see something that started out at about $5.5 billion and ended up at around $15 billion. Private industry doesn't do much better. Cost growth is endemic. Most social programs also see cost growth over time.
In doing this we have to go back to basic political references. What is it we are trying to achieve domestically and then what are we trying to do in terms of foreign policy.
Regards — Cliff