More research on Defense as a share of the budget produced this interesting take...
World Military Spending, GlobalIssues.org, Last updated: Sunday, September 13, 2009">from the Global Issues site
Furthermore, “national defense” category of federal spending is typically just over half of the United States discretionary budget (the money the President/Administration and Congress have direct control over, and must decide and act to spend each year. This is different to mandatory spending, the money that is spent in compliance with existing laws, such as social security benefits, medicare, paying the interest on the national debt and so on). For recent years here is how military, education and health budgets (the top 3) have fared:
http://www.fcnl.org/issues/item.php?item_id=3149&issue_id=19 links to Pres. Bush's 2009 Budget.
The Pie Chart at the top of this post came from this group. The link here will take you to a table as well.
When asking the question why the group's budget analysis is different, the answers are: http://www.fcnl.org/issues/item.php?item_id=2423&issue_id=18
Taken from http://www.fcnl.org/about/ . They are the Friends Committee on National Legislation, A Quaker Lobby in the Public Interest.
Who knew? Here is part of their description:
Who We Are
The Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL) fields the largest team of registered peace lobbyists in Washington, DC. Founded in 1943 by members of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers), FCNL staff and volunteers work with a nationwide network of tens of thousands of people from many different races, religions, and cultures to advocate social and economic justice, peace, and good government. FCNL is nonpartisan.
FCNL is also the oldest registered ecumenical lobby in Washington, DC. The organization's legislative priorities and policies are set by a General Committee made up of some 220 Quakers from around the country. FCNL's multi-issue advocacy connects historic Quaker testimonies on peace, equality, simplicity, and truth with peace and social justice issues which the United States government is or should be addressing.
FCNL is a nonpartisan 501(c)4 public interest lobby. It is neither a political action committee (PAC) nor a special interest lobby. The FCNL Education Fund is a parallel 501(c)3 organization that supports the research, analysis and education for which FCNL is known and respected.
Hopefully, you will have time to look at their numbers and their explanations of the differences among budget analysis'. It is very interesting. I had read some of Mr. Shah's,site, articles before. He is nothing if not thorough. He will make you question and give you much more to research.