We need more of this

Some congressional Democrats have introduced a bill to shift some of the spending for a new weapons system to other uses that actually help people.

Congressional Democrats are introducing legislation to transfer $1bn in funding from a controversial new intercontinental ballistic missile to the development of a universal Covid vaccine.

The Investing in Cures Before Missiles (ICBM) Act, introduced in the House and Senate on Friday, would stop funding on the proposed new missile, known as the ground-based strategic deterrent (GBSD) which is projected to cost a total of $264bn over its projected lifespan, and discontinue spending on a linked warhead modification program.

Instead, the life of the existing US intercontinental ballistic missile, the Minuteman III, would be extended until 2050, and an independent study commissioned on how best to do that.

“With all of the global challenges we face, the last thing we should be doing is giving billions to defense contractors to build missiles we don’t need to keep as a strong nuclear deterrence,” Ro Khanna, Democratic congressman from California and the bill’s co-author in the House, said.

The congressman said he was optimistic the new administration would support the bill.

“This will remain an uphill battle. Northrop Grumman is lobbying hard against this bill,” Khanna said. “Given we have Democratic majorities in both chambers and a Democrat in the White House, we think our chances are better, particularly by putting pressure on the administration to pause GBSD and consider extending Minuteman III.”

Jessica Sleight, the program director at Global Zero, a disarmament advocacy group, said: “The US nuclear arsenal far exceeds any plausible mission requirements put forth by the Pentagon. Even in the best of times, $264bn for new nuclear missiles is money we can’t spare for weapons we don’t need. In the middle of a devastating pandemic, it’s irresponsible.”

This is a small step but should be the start of a general shift away from the wasteful spending on weapons systems. You can be sure that the military-industrial complex will fight tooth and nail to preserve what are essentially corporate welfare programs.


  1. karmacat says

    This scenario happened in the 1980’s with the MX missile. At that time the US still had the minuteman missiles which were perfectly adequate for what was needed. But this was during the time of Reagan so we got the MX missile and wasted more money.

  2. sonofrojblake says

    “The Investing in Cures Before Missiles (ICBM) Act”

    Yeah, somebody thought of that and took the rest of the day off…

  3. rich rutishauser says

    But how can we continue to Make America Great Again if we don’t spend all our money on weapons (and tax cuts, don’t forget the tax cuts). St Ronnie Reagan is crying in heaven, which is totally not imaginary, because we’re going to let the Soviets win! Also, JESUS!

    Did I win bingo?

  4. friedfish2718 says

    The ruin of the USA is coming from unbridled entitlements, not from the military programs.
    Looking at 2018 fed budget numbers (www.govinfo.gov): $589 Billion for National Defense, $2,889 Billion for Human Resources.
    The Investing in Cures Before Missiles (ICBM) Act reflects a mind which is narrow-sighted, short-sighted, and immature.
    Looking at the latest $1.9 T Covid (aka Wuhan) “relief” bill , 9% goes to actual relief, transfer the remaining $ 1.7T bloat from payoffs to Leftist causes to actual cures (wuhan, Progressive Mental Dementia).

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