The U.S. is in decline because a lot of people think the problem is overspending on the military. It's not.
No less a person than Donald Rumsfield (Secretary of Defense under both Gerald Ford and George W. Bush) would seem to disagree with you:
"According to some estimates we cannot track $2.3 trillion in transactions," Rumsfeld admitted.
$2.3 trillion -- that's $8,000 for every man, woman and child in America. To understand how the Pentagon can lose track of trillions, consider the case of one military accountant who tried to find out what happened to a mere $300 million.
"We know it's gone. But we don't know what they spent it on," said Jim Minnery, Defense Finance and Accounting Service.
Here's the source: http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2002/01/29/eveningnews/main325985.shtml
The best book on programming for the layman is "Alice in Wonderland"; but that's because it's the best book on anything for the layman.