The US gives less per capita compared to the size of our economy than many other nations, and its much more likely to have political strings attached.
We should focus our aid where it would do the most good, and not try to solve all the problems in the world.
BTW, China is also pulling back on their foreign aid, especially in Africa. Their economy is in a shambles, just like ours.
The neocon approach seems to be to spend lots of money on ther friends, and gnore everything else. There needs to be much more transparency in the appropriations process. I do think we need to help stop the drug wars in Mexico, whch are driven by poverty and the incredible profits that are created by the illegality of drugs.
Similar imbalances exist because of the captivity of Americans - their not being able to buy prescription drugs overseas.
For example, one months worth of a cancer drug that costs $500 elsewhere might cost $10,000 here.
Its pretty clear that Social Security, having been paid for out of a separate fund, is not part of the yearly budget. So the chart is accurate.
People just hate the idea of "their" government spending more than the whole rest of the world combined to keep corporate profits high, especially when those same corporations are laying off Americans and dont really have as much of a connection to the wealth of most Americans as they once had.
Their jobs have been traded away as a bargaining chip.
So that leaves us with a situation in which we pay so that a very few can be richer and, our money supports torture, etc, and that leaves a bad taste in the mouth.
If I was naive enough, I'd want it to be that 20% figure too. That sounds reasonable.
This is a complicated situation. Faced with a mix of legitimate needs (to fight terrorism) and extreme political pressures from an out of control administration its often very hard to always say what each individual should have done in retrospect.
Maybe that was the tone Obama was tryng to strike?