I believe one way to help balance the budget is to make targeted cuts in defense spending. Washington has avoided the politically unpopular move of putting more troops on the ground. Instead, the Department of Defense pays private contractors 10 times the amount our troops would make for traditionally military tasks from food preparation to repairing and maintaining aircraft. Private mercenaries working for companies like Blackwater also charge astronomical security fees to protect civil servants working overseas. It is time we cut costs, stop paying exorbitant fees to private contractors, and return this work to our own soldiers.