To the editor:
(re: “USA is going down wrong path,” May 31)
Many attacking President Donald Trump for not mentioning John McCain when signing the $717 billion defense budget named after him neglect to question this extravagant and wasteful spending.
All recent lists of defense spending show that China is the only other country that spends more than $100 billion. What Sen. Rand Paul pointed out in a 2016 Republican primary debate is still true. We spend more than the next nine countries combined.
In what was mostly a good letter in the May 31 issue, Larry Penner correctly stated that cuts in defense spending have to be on the table. I only disagreed with him when he said the same for Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.
We need to have the same taxpayer-funded complete health insurance every other western democracy has. Health care cannot be treated as a commodity because everybody needs it to avoid dying prematurely.
Plus in a time when fewer people receive pensions, and many seniors are poor because what they receive is inadequate, Social Security has to be increased, not cut. Let me remind everyone that we pay into what is often falsely called an “entitlement.”