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Opening Arguments

A good day for butter

Of course if they're going to keep pouring trillions down the social-programs rathole, they have to get the money from somewhere. I mean, they can't just print and borrow all of it. So why not gut the nasty old military, starting with a plan to shrink the Army to pre-World II levels. Even some officials are worried about the implications, though:

Officials who saw an early draft of the announcement acknowledge that budget cuts will impose greater risk on the armed forces if they are again ordered to carry out two large-scale military actions at the same time: Success would take longer, they say, and there would be a larger number of casualties. Officials also say that a smaller military could invite adventurism by adversaries.

“You have to always keep your institution prepared, but you can’t carry a large land-war Defense Department when there is no large land war,” a senior Pentagon official said.

My immediate gut reaction was, "Yikes!" This is standard "guns or butter" stuff and of course the progressive Democrat is always going to go for the butter. But has the world really become such a safe place that we can afford to downsize the military?

Certainly there is something to say on behalf of a leaner but more adaptable and technically sophisitcated military. And there is merit to the argument that not having the capability to wage war on two fronts might make us less inclined to take foolish risks. Most of us aren't really qualified to study the proposals and determine which ones are justifiable and which ones are foolhardy.

But just going by who these people are -- Barack Obama and for God's sake Chuck Hagel -- is reason enough to be worried. Hard to enjoy eating all that butter when we have to worry about somebody with more guns coming along.

This, from Hot Air, is an interesting point:

. . . a few years ago this type of move from a liberal president who’s already seen as provocatively weak would have raised holy hell on the right. Today, after a few more years of war-weariness, urgency among tea partiers for meaningful spending cuts, and the mainstreaming of “non-interventionism” by Rand Paul and other libertarians, it’s a closer call.