The Center for a New American Security released a report yesterday entitled “The Seven Deadly Sins of Defense Spending.”[1]  In it, they lay out some very basic (but very fundamental) ways that the DoD can cut costs but “preserve a strong and highly capable U.S. military.”  Many of the suggested cuts seem like something you would see Dunder Mifflin being advised to do: reduce redundancy in IT management, cut pay allowances, increase pharmaceutical cost sharing, etc.

And, perhaps that’s the beauty of the plan: reduce normal day-to-day business expenses in such a way that it allows the DoD to keep its current level of military readiness.  It seems like a no-brainer but will definitely take across-the-aisle and across-the-civilian-military-gap support:

In an era of increasing fiscal austerity, DOD will be less and less able to provide those forces if increasingly inefficient and wasteful business processes and spiraling personnel costs continue unabated – and that is a price that the United States simply cannot afford to pay (42).

[1] My former PhD student, Katherine Kidder, is an author on the report.  Go, Kate, go!