US Economy/Defense industrial base good
Trump’s Policies Lift Lockheed Martin’s Profit, Shares Surge Lockheed Martin Corp. reported better-than-expected quarterly profit (2019). The title is self-explanatory.
International munitions sales are the main revenue generating segment (2019). This title is self-explanatory.
Job Opportunity Cost of War (2017). But is military spending the best way to create jobs? What do we sacrifice by increasing defense spending? In economics, what we lose by pursuing a particular strategy is called an “opportunity cost.” By spending money on the military and homeland security, we lose the opportunity to spend those funds on other things like education, healthcare, infrastructure, or clean energy. By forfeiting those opportunities, we lose the chance to fund programs that create even more jobs than military spending.
Donald Trump’s Hollow Promise of Arms Sales to Japan (2017). Second, and even worse, Trump has no idea of how few jobs the F-35 deal with Japan will actually create. As my colleagues at the Security Assistance Monitor have documented, the State Department has licensed a deal under which Japan will spend over $5 billion in exchange for the construction of an F-35 final assembly facility there. So, the Japanese purchase of F-35s will indeed create jobs – in Japan. You would think that someone like President Trump, who prides himself on being a master deal maker, might have figured that out before bragging about all the jobs the deal would bring home to America. Yes, we will be exporting F-35s to Japan. But we will also be exporting most of the jobs involved in building those aircraft.
Study says domestic, not military, spending generates jobs (2018). New research by the Costs of War Project based at Brown University’s Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs finds that federal spending on domestic programs creates far more American jobs and yields more broad-based benefits than military spending. The study by economist Heidi Garrett-Peltier documented how many jobs are created in a variety of domestic sectors for every million dollars of federal money spent. She compared that to the number of jobs created for every $1 million spent on defense and found that domestic spending outpaces military spending in job creation by 21 percent (for wind energy development) to 178 percent (for elementary and secondary education)