I heard on the radio yesterday that someone high up in the system in the USA ( I missed the name, was sanding off a filled seam on a stitch and tape build at the time) is proposing that the US military be reduced in size to pre WW11 levels, and that it can maintain its effectiveness with its technological advantage.
Now as an outside who is a regular visitor to the USA, I've a view that is perhaps different from those who'd say that the taxes that maintain the military would be better used elsewhere, although I feel that there are plenty of things that would benefit from better funding.
Here goes. There are many towns in the USA that are essentially "company towns" whos economies are maintained by a nearby military base, or a factory that produces materiel for the military. The "machine" is so big that the whole countries economy would be affected by the change.
Each and every one of the people employed by "the machine" , and those employed to provide those people with housing, services and goods etc could find themselves looking for jobs on a difficult job market. The usual "multiplier" in cases of comparing the effect of direct employment with overall societal effect is around 4/1. I suspect that in a case like this it takes a lot more than that to support a soldier, airman, pilot or seaman in service so a reduction of ( wild guess) 200,000 in the military could see a couple of million unemployed, a burden on the system, no longer paying taxes or contributing to society.
Each of those people support a little bit of many jobs, the local supermarket, the teachers who teach their kids, the corner cafe and the mechanic who services their car and on and on. The ripple effect would be enormous and the reduction will, should it happen, need to be very gradual, and managed very carefully .