Cut U.S. military presence abroad

Americans may be paying more for defense while getting less in troop strength, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel hinted Monday.

During a speech at the Pentagon, Hagel said plans are for the active-duty U.S. Army to be cut from its current 522,000 soldiers to as few as 440,000. The Army has not been that small since before World War II.

At the same time, Hagel said President Barack Obama wants to enhance the Pentagon budget. The Defense Department is scheduled to receive $496 billion next year – but Obama wants to add $26 billion to that.

Obviously, the cost of military hardware continues to increase dramatically. Just as plainly, however, the Pentagon wastes billions of dollars each year.

One way of reducing defense spending is to close more military bases in the United States, Hagel said Monday.

What about overseas? Why, for example, do Americans continue to spend $2 billion a year to station 50,000 troops and Marines in Japan? Why is Japan allowed to benefit from that, while contributing just $200 million to the cost?

Europe, where about 70,000 U.S. military personnel are stationed, is a similar situation. Hagel and Obama should look at base closings – abroad.

About 16 million older Americans rely on Medicare Advantage policies to supplement their government health insurance. We have warned for years that drastic cuts in federal funding for Medicare Advantage were part of the Obamacare scheme.

President Barack Obama and his fellow liberals have accused those of us sounding the alarm about Medicare Advantage of lying. That sounds strange indeed, coming from a White House exposed repeatedly for not telling the truth about Obamacare.

Once again, the liberals’ dishonesty is being unmasked. Medicare officials have released a 148-page report on plans for the program next year. It includes a cut in funding for Medicare Advantage.

When Obamacare was being debated, some analysts warned it would involve billions of dollars in Medicare cuts. It turned out that among liberals, former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., was the least dishonest of all when she commented that Americans would have to pass the Obamacare bill to know what was in it.

Now we know the critics were right. Obamacare will cost senior citizens dearly. They can pay more to maintain existing health insurance or settle for reduced benefits.

Another Obamacare lie has been exposed. How many more will have to be revealed before the program is repealed?