While Democrats and Republicans have been debating morality and the best use of money to be spent we thought it would be good to take a look at what money has already been spent: particularly in regards to foreign aid.
As of this writing the website http://www.usdebtclock.org has the U.S. national debt fast approaching $22 TRILLION!!! I know there are many wealthy people in this country and quite a few billionaires. I have never heard of a person or company outside of Amazon and possibly Apple that are worth a trillion dollars. When people like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and other Democratic Socialists recommend taxing the wealthy at 70% – 90% to pay for social welfare programs I wonder if they take into consideration the obligations the United States has to pay for aka the national debt aka interest on said debt aka endless wars in The Middle East aka quantitative easing won’t hide the fact that WE ARE BROKE!
What is the purpose of foreign aid? Seriously? Why are we borrowing money from other countries and bondholders, which is where the national debt comes from just to spend a portion of it on foreign aid? Think of that for a second. We borrow money we don’t have and can’t print due to the risk of hyperinflation and give it to other countries to help them out for strategic reasons. To answer this we went straight to the source. https://www.foreignassistance.gov is the official website for United States foreign aid. Here is what they had to say in regards to foreign aid:
Foreign assistance is aid given by the United States to other countries to support global peace, security, and development efforts, and provide humanitarian relief during times of crisis. It is a strategic, economic, and moral imperative for the United States and vital to U.S. national security.
Here is a chart that shows what the U.S. has spent on foreign aid since 2005.
The amounts shown are directly from their website. Here are the total amounts from 2005 – 2018:
Amount Requested = $385,870,703,676
Amount Appropriated = $455,724,289,714
Amount Obligated = $220,877,347,290
Amount Spent = $193,774,908,667
Look at those dollar amounts for a second and absorb the magnitude of the money spent on foreign aid over the past 14 years. This is not money spent on wars in Afghanistan, Iraq or Syria. This is taxpayer money; loans from bondholders including other governments that own U.S. backed treasuries being given to other countries around the world all in the name of foreign aid.
Which countries are so in need of our money that we go into debt partially to give out? I’m glad you asked! Rather than us list every single country, here is the link so you can explore on your own. Outside of Australia every other continent has countries on it that we give financial aid to. Here is one that caught our eye and may surprise some of you…Russia! Yes, for all the talk of Russian collusion regarding Donald Trump and the 2016 Presidential election you would be surprised to learn that we were giving financial aid to Russia for the majority of Barrack Obamas time in office with the largest amounts occurring during the first three years of his second term. Here is a quick recap of actual money spent:
2011 = $26,084
2012 = $8,064
2013 = $42,087,754
2014 = $7,609,223
2015 = $2,980,057
2016 = $25,845
2017 = $689,598
2018 = -$43,415
Now, we could do the math for you and total it up but, you don’t need a calculator to see that from 2013 – 2015 we gave Russia over $50 Million in foreign aid. For a country that was allegedly trying to subvert our democracy by interfering with our elections we sure had no problem giving them a handout 7 years in a row. Guess in the 8th year we had buyers’ remorse. (No impeachment, no money; just saying) Here’s the point. Forget morality. Put aside your feelings of right and wrong. When your house is not in financial order you cannot worry about someone else’s house. If your ship has a hole in it and is taking on water the first priority is to plug the hole before the ship goes down then remove the water. This is a metaphor for our debt crisis and foreign aid. While politicians are arguing about where to spend money and coming up with more ways to give money away via social programs, wars and foreign aid perhaps we should take a step back and see where we are financially. $22 Trillion is a massive hole! The only way to get out of that hole is to stop digging. If that means entitlement reform and reducing or eliminating foreign aid so be it.