Some in Israel want to rob an additional $20B from the U.S. #military

The U.S. is flat-broke and some want more money from us. Amazing.

In communities across the U.S., police officers are being let go in droves, services are cut off, even more industries are failing and yet the taxpayer has to cough up $20B dollars. Amazing.

The number one grave threat to the U.S. is spending. It alone can make the break up of Yugoslavia, look like a pillow fight.

But I guess we got to do what AIPAC says.

Is it difficult to cut money from the federal budget?

Operation: USELESS DIRT and other things provide waste on the defense side. Let us take a look at the domestic part of the fed budget.

Fifteen different agencies oversee food-safety laws, more than 20 separate programs assist the homeless, 82 federal programs improve teacher quality, 80 programs help disadvantaged people with transportation, 47 programs help job training and employment, 56 programs help people understand finances, and there are 80 programs for economic development, just as examples. The sum totals of these inefficiencies are between $100-$200 Billion.

From the nutty ideas crew; We could solve the Libyan issue if only we had the F-35B #military

Suggestions pushed forth from various camps on how to solve the Libya crisis can be pretty incredible. If only the President had more options from the military.

What makes any senior leadership decision difficult is that the DOD has had to rob resources from various locations around the globe to support Operation: USELESS DIRT 1 and Operation: USELESS DIRT 2. Yes, we already have a “hollow force” in the area of full spectrum operations. For instance; we have large numbers of Marines that have never been on-board ship or participated in amphibious operations.

Back to those incredible suggestions for the President and Libya. Second Line of Defense, an industry cheerleader; an F-35 cheerleader is sad because if only we had the F-35B with a Marine amphib force, we could solve Libyan problems. They even suggest that the F-35B could replace an AWACS. Hint to the Second Line of Defense; the AWACS can stay up for hours and has a lot of crew that can be slotted in by the needs of the specific operation. This includes accessory air traffic control and a number of joint command and control and deconflict tasks. Second Line of Defense even has the brass to suggest that the F-35B could do the electronic attack effort when no such product for the aircraft is likely to exist. In its present form, the F-35–especially an aircraft that will engage in short take-off and vertical landing operations–is weight-challenged and thermal management challenged making it a poor candidate for upgrades. That and the “why can’t daddy program manage?” crew is years away from having the mountains of software and other engineering kit figured out for the basic aircraft. Some additional amusement is provided by Second Line of Defense in their suggestion of great value of the disastrous Littoral Combat Ship Gyp.

The suggestions of Second Line of Defense (on many issues) are those of the hobby shop patron who has indulged in too much sniffing of model airplane glue. Their answer is gold-plated and faulty future hardware and not hard work in the present day.

The U.S. has enough kinds of military resources to do the Libyan operation if that is what is decided. Well, we would have the right amount of resources if management would put effort into refurbishing land vehicles we have and not giving them away in-theater for pennies on the dollar. We would have the right hardware if we would invest more in repairing ships we currently have as a matter of routine. For instance, every dollar wasted on the Littoral Combat Ship is money that could be invested into day-to-day ship repair. We would have the right balance of manpower if the Air Force wasn’t using their people as a Luftwaffe ground army. We would have the right balance of manpower if the Marines were not used like a second land army. Air Force and the Marine issues point toward moving ground mission slots into the U.S. Army.

What the U.S. does not have is the kind of leadership expertise that puts stress on having continuous capability across all of our military forces. This takes good old Operations and Sustainment (O&S) funding and daily sweat by the troops and their leaders. When we have the will to follow this path for all operations and support communities, the President will have more options for world contingencies. Until then, expect more unworkable solutions from the Second Line of Defense and their kind.

Update-Gates to announce $100B defense savings plan as early as Thursday.

As early as Thursday–according to Reuters–U.S. Secretary of Defense Gates is expected to make an announcement of plan to remove $100B in Pentagon spending. This during a time when the nation is approaching a $14T debt with the federal budget.

Sources say that the Marine’s troubled EFV and a “medium air-to-air missile developed by Raytheon,” * may be cancelled.

*Update-This source says “ground-launched”.

Operation: USELESS DIRT has made the U.S. into a paper tiger for real war ops

Not just the Marines shown in the quote below, but the whole of the U.S. military is not ready for real war ops. And, other than platitude, Afghanistan provides no real valid defense for the United States.

“The Marine Corps is in a similar predicament. Senior Marine officers often lament that a decade into counterinsurgency operations, the Corps has mid-career officers and non-commissioned officers who have never been on a ship, let alone learned the complex art of amphibious operations, the Marines’ central mission.

In an attempt to correct that shortcoming, the Marine Corps just completed its first major amphibious exercise in a decade — by simulation. An exercise involving real Marines and actual weapons and ships is planned for 2012.”

Proving that some defense analysts aren’t especially bright #military

Mackenzie Eaglen, a defense analyst with the Washington- based Heritage Foundation said that, coming after the round of the April 2009 cuts and terminations, Mullen’s remarks were “astounding.”

“There is no more low-hanging fruit in this account, and now cuts will have to come from mostly” mature programs, she said. “There is simply no way for the Pentagon to cut further into the bone without having direct impact and negative consequences on those in uniform.”

LCS, JSF, EFV, DDX to name a few. They define “low-hanging fruit” ready for the chop.

F-35 problems were predictable

F-35 program critics have a better track record than F-35 cheerleaders.

Shocking? Not really.

“People that really knew about this could have predicted the way it has gone,” said Michael Sullivan, director of acquisition auditing for the Government Accountability Office. “It’s pretty much a typical [defense] acquisition.”

The Pentagon and Congress ignored plenty of warnings. The Congressional Budget Office reported in March 1999 that JSF costs might be underestimated by as much as 50 percent.

A year later, the GAO told Congress: “To allow the JSF to proceed as planned — without maturing critical technologies — would perpetuate conditions that have led to cost growth and schedule delays in many prior DoD weapons system acquisition programs.” The GAO issued pretty much the same warning a year later, just before the contract was awarded.

“These increases were as predictable as the sunrise, and we’re not done yet,” said Winslow Wheeler, analyst for the Center for Defense Information and formerly a longtime Senate defense staff member.

The magnitude of the increases in F-35 costs are mind-boggling to anyone accustomed to such real-world undertakings as buying a car, building a house or even running a business.

In 2001 the Pentagon estimated that it would cost $177.1 billion, or $62 million per aircraft, to develop the F-35 and build 2,866 planes. Assuming some inflation and other cost increases, the price tag was projected to rise to $226.5 billion, or $79 million per aircraft.

Those figures have increased almost yearly. Pentagon number crunchers now estimate the development, production and all other costs of acquiring 2,457 F-35s (about 400 fewer than originally planned) could total $382.4 billion, or $155.6 million per aircraft.

Then there is the hype LM likes to preach lately that they are reducing costs on building the jets. This is pretty hard to believe when we don’t know what we don’t know because there isn’t enough flight testing done. Yes it comes back to the issue of mistake-jets.

When the F-35 development contract was awarded to the Lockheed team, the Pentagon said the contractors would “implement innovative management and business practices focusing on achieving affordable unit flyaway costs.”

But nearly nine years later, the Pentagon is singing a different tune. In the June 1 memo to Congress, Carter was critical of Lockheed’s performance in several areas.

Lockheed’s internal, government-mandated system for monitoring schedule, work progress and costs “was determined to be noncompliant with [Defense Department] standards. This situation is disappointing and unacceptable,” Carter’s memo said.

That means that Lockheed management had no good way of telling whether work was being done on schedule, what it was costing and reporting that information on a timely basis to the government. Lockheed’s net profit payments, which until recently were regularly awarded, were supposed to be based on its ability to monitor progress and costs and to report accurately to the government.

Similarly, Carter said Lockheed and the Pentagon office overseeing the F-35 program did not have good “risk management mechanisms” in place to alert company and government officials about technical or schedule problems that needed immediate attention.

There is some wisdom from the movie Tommy Boy. Maybe Boeing could try this in a sales pitch.

Let’s think about
this for a sec, Ted.

Why would someone put a guarantee
on a box? Hmm, very interesting.

Go on! I’m listening.

Here’s the way i see it, Ted.

A guy puts a fancy guarantee on the box ’cause
he wants you to feel all warm and toasty inside.

- Yeah, makes a man feel good.
– Of course it does. Why shouldn’t it?

You figure you put that little box
under your pillow at night, the Guarantee Fairy

might come down and leave
a quarter, am i right, Ted?

What’s your point?

The point is, how do you know
the fairy isn’t a crazy glue sniffer?

“Building model airplanes” says the
little fairy. Well, we’re not buying it.

He sneaks into your house once,
that’s all it takes.

Next thing you know there’s money missing
off the dresser and your daughter

is knocked up.
I’ve seen it a hundred times.

But why do they put a
guarantee on the box then?

‘Cause they know all they sold
you was a guaranteed piece of shit.

That’s all it is, isn’t it? Hey, if
you want me to take a dump in a box

and mark it “guaranteed”, i will.
I got spare time.

But for now, for your customers’ sake,
for your daughter’s sake

you might wanna think about
buying a quality product from me.

Navy fighter gap truths

You can forget this article that quotes Gates and a civilian airliner marketeer.

If you are following Gates you are depending on the U.S. to hope it can fight its way into contested air space in the future. This idea ignores the reality of threats that are out there and threats that are developing.

The F-35C does not have two engines. It has not done one cat-shot or trap or even OPEVAL. It needs a structural redesign. And even with all that; it will be obsolete by the time it reaches the fleet. So with all that–and the supposed savings that the DOD is supposed make happen by magic trick–all while funding losers like the DDX, LCS, F-35 and so on, the Navy is headed for a disaster in capability. It can not fund and sustain all of these expensive to acquire, expensive to sustain and expensive to lose in battle; ineffective targets that future enemies can kill on parity or worse than parity.

The sooner Gates leaves the sooner we won’t have to listen to his dumb opinions on what America needs to defend itself.

The Navy does have a fighter gap. The Navy may end up losing a carrier. And even without officially losing a carrier, how can it justify all of them when there are tiny air wings in the 2020s?

Kill some defense programs please

If ever there was a reason to cut the U.S. military budget, the following examples demonstrate the monstrous mismanagement of taxpayer funds.

Yes there is the wholesale lies over the F-35 Joint Strike Failure; and yet there is more.

We are giving away millions of dollars of equipment in Iraq that could be used in Afghanistan. These operations are the king of war-profiteering. Perform useless; no gain to U.S. security, dirt wars that depend on billions in faulty contracted war support and fraudulent nation-building and then look for more opportunities to fleece the American taxpayer.

The Navy has some huge problems also. If an aircraft carrier costs over 10 billion it isn’t worth it; and really, even $5B is too much for these gold-plated submarine targets. The same goes for dreadnoughts being badged “destroyers” at $6-7B each; and then topped off with the Littoral Combat Gyp. The DDX will get clipped easily by a sub. We need surface combatants but not ones that are so expensive and in so few numbers that we can’t afford to lose any in a war.

The U.S. military can still be powerful and exert good expeditionary power; but not at the price and capability we see today where the top DOD acquisition official–Ashton Carter–pencil-whips “re-certification” of Nunn-McCurdy programs and then lies to our elected officials stating that any of this junk is necessary for the defense of the nation.

If President Obama had any sense on these issues, he would veto the defense budget for the sole reason that Gates and Carter have their hands in all of this mess and aren’t doing their job. Good luck with that.

Poor Fred

Fred can’t buy a clue. But it seems that Fred is only being told a small part of the story. Backing Norman is a loser play.

You see, the JSF already has an engine, the F-35. When three defense contractors were vying to build the plane, all three ā€” including the ultimate winner, Lockheed Martin ā€” chose to include this engine in their proposed designs. Since then, the F-35 has performed exceptionally well in flight tests and earned the confidence of the Pentagon. So why does Congress insist on funding an extra engine? The answer lies in the three Pā€™s: politics, pork and parochialism.