You can not build the Empire and drain the Swamp at the same time. That’s because the Swamp is largely the fruit of Empire. And it’s also the reason that the Donald is being rapidly undone.
Indeed, it is the Empire’s $750 billion national security budget which feeds Washington’s vast complex of weapons suppliers, intelligence contractors, national security bureaucrats, NGOs, think tanks, K-street lobbies, so-called “law” firms and all-purpose racketeers, thereby accounting for the Imperial City’s unseemly and ill-gotten prosperity.
It goes without saying that the number one priority of these denizens of Empire is to keep the gravy train rolling. That is accomplished by inventing and exaggerating threats to America’s homeland security and by formulating far-flung and misbegotten missions designed to extend and reinforce Washington’s global hegemony.
As we have demonstrated elsewhere, a true homeland security defense budget—consisting of the strategic nuclear triad and modest conventional forces to defend the nation’s shoreline and air space—would cost about $250 billion per year.
So the $500 billion difference is both the cost of Empire—and a budget burden that is pushing the US toward a giant generational fiscal crisis–and also a measure of the fiscal larder that fills the Swamp with the projects and busywork of Empire.
Therefore, in Part 2 we begin the assessment of what $500 billion of Empire consists of, and how it functions to not only thwart the Donald’s desire to drain the Swamp, but actually enlists him the cause of deepening its brackish waters.