No need to raid funds for Pentagon

No need to raid funds for Pentagon

Parents should recognize the syndrome right away. Your teenager comes home with an emergency request for $150.

Ten minutes later it’s evident that the question isn’t about where the money’s coming from, but where it’s going. Twenty minutes later your teen admits it wasn’t something she really needed, after all.

So it is with the proposition that we raid either the Social Security or the Medicare surplus to give Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld $18.4 billion over and above the Bush administration’s original defense budget request.

Before we start asking where we’re going to find the money, why don’t we look closer at where it’s going? For starters, $8.3 billion of the extra money would be earmarked to speed implementation of President Bush’s pet project, ballistic missile defense.

Trimming any part of that request, Rumsfeld told the Senate Defense Appropriations subcommittee, would throw way off schedule Bush’s program to abrogate the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty, alienate the Russians and the Chinese, and terrify the rest of Asia.

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