One of the most shamelessly mendacious and contrived hypernationalistic narratives being pushed by the Trump team is the idea that the United States military was in decline during the Obama years and that he was “rebuilding it” against the will of Democrats. “It was very depleted as you know. A lot of the military folks can tell you. And it is being rebuilt to a level that we have never seen before” babbled Trump at the White House Easter Egg Roll earlier this year in a wildly delusional and factually inaccurate brag.
The idea that the ravenous leviathan of the United States military, which greedily consumed 54% of all federal discretionary spending in 2015 and whose budget is more than the next seven countries combined, was somehow in decline or depleted is absolutely ridiculous. In fact, the military should start to be depleted, seeing as it had so much money left over last year that they spent $4.6 million on lobster and crab to avoid their budget going to waste.
Similarly, the idea that Democrats are somehow opposed to this is also laughable, seeing as the most recent National Defense Authorization Act — which gives Trump and his trigger-happy generals a staggering $738 billion to work with last year, a $21 billion increase from last year — was passed without a single Republican vote in the House.
But none of those facts exist in Trumpworld, whose members will do or say anything that might solidify their hold on power.
The president’s daughter, Ivanka Trump, took to Twitter to boast about how her father was “rebuilding the military” by investing in vital equipment like…fighter jets, helicopters and tanks.
Pentagon reporter and editorial director at Just Security, Kate Brannen, publicly called out Ivanka for trying to give her father credit for things that have been in the defense budget forever:
Where @IvankaTrump tweets a list of things that have been in the defense budget for as long as I have been covering the Pentagon.
This is her example of her dad “rebuilding the military.” https://t.co/UgljO3b01k
— Kate Brannen (@K8brannen) December 30, 2019
It is vitally important that we keep hammering the Trumps and calling out their lies at every opportunity. There’s far too much at stake for them to get away with such lazy and obviously untrue appeals of vapid faux-patriotism.
Colin Taylor is the editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.