Monday, January 07, 2013

Military Decline


David Brooks in tomorrow's NY Times:
All the charges about Hagel’s views on Israel or Iran are secondary. The real question is, how will he begin this long cutting process? How will he balance modernizing the military and paying current personnel? How will he recalibrate American defense strategy with, say, 455,000 fewer service members?
How, in short, will Hagel supervise the beginning of America’s military decline?
Wow! "Military decline!" Sounds scary!

Brad Plumer in today's Washington Post, however, has some really interesting charts about military spending, including this one of total military spending in 2011 among the 14 military spendiest nations:


So I guess it's fair to ask Mr. Brooks how much of a cut constitutes "military decline"?

De-Extinction


My French cousin, Jean-fran├žois, shares this fascinating link. Will we de-extinct Cro-Magnon man before we extinct ourselves? Is evolution cyclical?

There's interesting stuff in every paragraph.