Its those two (apparently major) things plus the following, as far as I understand....Originally posted by Gunark
Can someone explain how they got this new breakdown? I looked the original article, but besides including past military spending and not including social security, I can't quite figure out what they did to get the new graph from the small one:
The big, ("accurate") pie broken down:The [small] pie chart [...] is the government['s ...] distortion of how our income tax dollars are spent because it includes Trust Funds (e.g., Social Security), and the expenses of past military spending are not distinguished from nonmilitary spending.
...] federal funds[...] do not include trust funds â€” such as Social Security â€” that are raised and spent separately from income taxes. What you pay (or donâ€™t pay) by April 17, 2006, goes to the federal funds portion of the budget. The government practice of combining trust and federal funds began during the Vietnam War, thus making the human needs portion of the budget seem larger and the military portion smaller.
The U.S. Government says that military spending amounts to 19% of the budget, the Center for Defense Information (CDI) reports 51%, the Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL) reports 42%, and the War Resisters League claims 49%. Why the variation?
Different groups have different purposes in how they present the budget figures. [...]
Discretionary Spending. The Center for Defense Information (CDI) has used "discretionary" spending â€” budget items that Congress is allowed to tinker with â€” which excludes so-called "mandatory" spending items (such as interest on the national debt and retirement pay). WRL does not make such distinctions and lumps them together.
Past Military Spending. If the government does not have enough money to finance a war (or spending for its hefty military budgets), they borrow through loans, savings bonds, and so forth. This borrowing (done heavily during World War II and the Vietnam War) comes back in later years as "hidden" military spending through interest payments on the national debt.
How much of the debt is considered â€œmilitaryâ€ varies from group. As mentioned above, WRL uses 80% whereas FCNL uses 48%. Consequently, FCNL reports that 42% of the FY2004 budget is military (28% current military and 14% past military). WRL's figures are 49% of the FY2007 budget (25% current, 4.5% Iraq & Afghanistan supplemental, and 19% past).
Outlays vs. Budget Authority.
WRL uses "outlays" rather than "budget authority," which is often preferred by the government, news media, and groups such as CDI. Outlays refer to spending done in a particular fiscal year, whereas budget authority refers to new spending authorized over a period of several future years. Consequently, CDI reported $421 billion in FY2005 budget authority for the military and $2,200 billion "over the next five years." While WRL reports outlays of $563 billion, plus $100 billion in supplemental spending for Iraq and Afghanistan wars, plus $429 billion in past military spending â€” totaling $1092 billion â€” just for FY2007.
Function vs. Agency/Department.
Not all military spending is done by the Department of Defense. For example, the Department of Energy budget is responsible for nuclear weapons. Consequently, calculations of military spending should consider the function of the budget item regardless of the department or agency in charge of it. However, not everyone agrees what constitutes a military function. For example, WRL includes the 66% of Homeland Security (which includes the Coast Guard), and half of NASA in military spending, while other groups do not.
Federal Funds vs. Unified Budget.
WRL uses "federal funds" rather than the "unified budget" figures that the government prefers. Federal funds exclude trust fund money (e.g., social security), which is raised separately (e.g., the FICA and Medicare deductions in paychecks) and is specifically ear-marked for particular programs. By combining trust funds with federal funds, the percentage of spending on the military appears smaller, a deceptive practice first used by the government in the late 1960s as the Vietnam War became more and more unpopular.
What period are we talking about?
Finally, there is some variation in figures because different fiscal years are used. WRLâ€™s figures (above) are for FY2007 (Oct. 1, 2006 to Sep. 30, 2007) as are the most recent U.S. government figures. FCNL does their analysis for the most recent completed year or FY2004 (Oct. 1, 2003 to Sep. 30, 2004).
BUDGETTED: Current Military, $563 billion:
â€¢ Military Personnel $110 billion
â€¢ Operation & Maint. $162 billion
â€¢ Procurement $90 billion
â€¢ Research & Dev. $72 billion
â€¢ Construction $8 billion
â€¢ Family Housing $4 billion
â€¢ DoD misc. $4 billion
â€¢ Retired Pay $49 billion
â€¢ DoE nuclear weapons $17 billion
â€¢ NASA (50%) $8 billion
â€¢ International Security $8 billion
â€¢ Homeland Secur. (military) $27 billion
â€¢ Exec. Office of President $2 billion
â€¢ other military (non-DoD) $2 billion
UNBUDGETTED: Iraq & Afghanistan Wars
$100 billion (est.):
Most of the spending for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan is not included in the Presidentâ€™s Budget but the Administration will seek supplemental appropriations later this year as it has in the past three years. This is likely an underestimate.
â€¢ Veteransâ€™ Benefits $76 billion
â€¢ Interest on national debt $353 billion (80% est. to be created by military spending)
Human Resources, $748 billion:
â€¢ Health/Human Services
â€¢ Soc. Sec. Administration
â€¢ Education Dept.
â€¢ Food/Nutrition programs
â€¢ Housing & Urban Dev.
â€¢ Labor Dept.
â€¢ other human resources.
General Government, $281 billion:
â€¢ Interest on debt (20%)
â€¢ Treasury â€¢ Government personnel â€¢ Justice Dept.
â€¢ State Dept.
â€¢ Homeland Security (17%)
â€¢ International Affairs
â€¢ NASA (50%)
â€¢ other general govt.
Physical Resources, $131 billion:
â€¢ Homeland Security (17%)
â€¢ Energy (non-military)
â€¢ Environmental Protection
â€¢ Nat. Science Fdtn.
â€¢ Army Corps Engineers
â€¢ Fed. Comm. Commission
â€¢ other physical resources