The whole point of the budget deal just approved by Congress was ostensibly to slow spending and reduce the national debt. Yet, the most expensive federal agency included in the deal didn’t get a budget cut — it got a raise.

That agency is the Pentagon. Under the debt ceiling deal, Pentagon spending will rise to $886 billion.

The fact that the Pentagon skated through the melee not only without a scratch but as a big winner speaks to an entrenched double standard that’s been accepted for far too long in Washington.

That double standard says there’s no price too high for the Pentagon, even while it claims the wealthiest country in the world apparently can’t afford to make sure all of its people have basic access to food, housing and health care.

That takes a lot of chutzpah to maintain. The reality is that the Pentagon budget is far higher than it should be. Half of the Pentagon budget each year goes to contractors. Those same contractors have apparently been price-gouging the Pentagon — and us, the taxpayers — for years, and they’ve largely gotten away with it.

Lindsay Koshgarian is a federal budgeting expert who directs the National Priorities Project at the Institute for Policy Studies. 

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