Policy Forum

Deficits and Defense

November 19, 2010 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM EST

Auditorium/Wintergarden

Featuring Representative Barney Frank (D‐​Massachusetts); Loren B. Thompson, Chief Operating Officer, Lexington Institute; and Benjamin Friedman, Research Fellow in Defense and Homeland Security Studies, Cato Institute; moderated by Christopher Preble, Director of Foreign Policy Studies, Cato Institute.

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Concern over the nation’s looming deficit has prompted a renewed focus on the need for spending cuts. Some in Washington would shield the Pentagon’s budget from scrutiny, but several newly elected members of Congress who have put deficit reduction at the top of their agenda have said that military spending cuts must be on the table. The costs associated with being the world’s policeman, they say, are simply too high. The United States must seek ways to shift the burdens of defense to other countries who have enjoyed the free ride at American taxpayers’ expense for too long. Who will prevail? In what ways will fiscal constraints force Washington to reconsider the purpose of American military power? Will Washington rein in its ambitions as defense spending comes down, or will our troops be forced to bear additional burdens? Please join us for a discussion of these issues.