Are We More or Less a Militarized Society?

Reading the attached link reminded me of something I wondered about off and on again over the last few years: Are we more or less a militarized society today than, say, 50 years ago?

On the one hand, the US Navy has greater firepower than the next 13 navies combined. We have…last I checked…something like 716 military bases in 38 countries, with troops stationed in 148 nations. The percent of GDP dedicated to DoD, Homeland Security, etc. has increased dramatically since 9/11. When we combine the Pentagon budget, the cost of wars, intelligence agencies, contractor costs, military foreign aid, the cost of building and maintaining hardened embassies, the total comes to $1 trillion. A year. Every year.  (Source- Pat Buchanan here).

Fifty or so years ago, as a percent of the national GDP, our defense budget was much larger than it is now.  Go ahead and take a look here.  There was a national draft.  However, it seems, looking through a half-century or so lens, that we were a much less militarized a culture.

It’s an intangible that I’m going to investigate as time goes by.

US Defense Spending as a Percent of GDP 1950 - 2015

Related link:  UC Davis Pepper-Spray Incident Reveals Weakness Up Top


About zghortaman
Attempting to navigate the modern day with every tool available

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