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The F-35, the Pentagon's $1.1 Trillion Flying Money Pit


benson13
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The lemon has liftoff! After 20 years, the most expensive weapon in history is being put into service.

 

 

Twenty years since the Pentagon began taking bids from defense contractors, the F-35 fighter jetthe most expensive weapon ever madeis finally ready to see active duty over the Pacific Ocean. The U.S. Marine Corps expects to deploy 16 of the stealthy high-tech warplanes early next year at Iwakuni Air Station in Japan. From there, U.S. pilots will begin testing the jets in regular noncombat operations from the Navys USS Wasp amphibious assault vessel in what one commanding general has described as the school of hard knocks.

 

Its a curious choice of words considering the checkered history of the much-maligned and madly over-budget F-35, which has basically been taking knocks since it was first conceived.

 

Years of delays, management shakeups, engine and software problemsand most importantcost overruns have made this Lockheed Martin jet initiative a punching bag and pork barrel project.

 

As far back as 2001, the cost of the program was termed astronomical, with initial estimates pegged at $233 billion. The price tag has ballooned to about $400 billion, with plenty of glitches still to be worked out. (A high-ranking member of the Pentagon is denigrating the jets for their defects even as theyre being declared ready for combat.) Throw in the average price of $135 million a plane and pilot helmets that will run $400,000 apiece, and the total cost of the F-35 program will exceed $1.1 trillion.

 

In case youve been wondering where your hard-earned tax dollars go, now you know.

 

Recent efforts to reel in costs have bordered on satire. In July, Lockheed Martin announced plans to spend an additional $170 million as part of a cost-reduction program that it claimed would reduce other costs by $1 billion over five years. Then just a month later, the Pentagon approved an additional $1 billion for Lockheed Martin to offset the aerospace companys costs to suppliers, effectively wiping out whatever taxpayer savings Lockheed had been touting just weeks earlier.

 

Despite the many problems and immense costs, the F-35 program is so intricately linked to the military-industrial complex that efforts to rein it in have been fruitless. Major global politically connected aerospace companies involved: In addition to Lockheed Martin theres Pratt & Whitney, Northrup Grumman, Britains BAE Systems and Norways Kongsberg Gruppen.

 

Then theres the complex network of 1,300 smaller suppliers that are providing everything from the wiring to software code. And there are the American jobs hanging in the balance: More than 130,000 people in 45 states are employed by the F-35 program, according to Bloomberg, making it the most striking example of a U.S. defense project becoming so ingrained into the fabric of the U.S. economy that trying to tamp its excesses becomes politically unpopular and economically painful.

 

Peacenik former presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders has quietly courted Lockheed Martin to bring business to his home state of Vermont even as he has derided the defense industries. In an odd twist, the normally hawkish Sen. John McCain has emerged as one of the most acid-tongued opponents of the program.

 

Meanwhile, problems with the jets are nowhere near being resolved. Although deployment of the F-35B (the one that can take off and land both horizontally and vertically) is slated for early next year, any of the numerous test flights could uncover more new problems.

 

Both the U.S. Marine Corps and the U.S. Air Force have recently declared their versions of the F-35 combat ready, but a memo issued in late August from the Pentagons top testing official, Michael Gilmore, lambasted assertions that the planes were anywhere near ready, declaring them unsuitable for combat missions. The planes will need support to locate and avoid modern threats, acquire targets and engage formations with enemy fighter aircraft due to outstanding performance deficiencies, the 16-page memo first acquired by Bloomberg stated.

 

Among the problems: The jets dont carry much ordnance (just two missiles and two bombs), possess a poor cannon design that reduces accuracy and lack the capacity of existing jets when in close air-support situations.

 

But the U.S. Armed Forces is moving ahead with the F-35 anyway. After 20 years and $400 billion of taxpayer money, the military has spent too much not to go the last yardand $700 billionto see this program through.

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The lemon has liftoff! After 20 years, the most expensive weapon in history is being put into service.

 

 

Twenty years since the Pentagon began taking bids from defense contractors, the F-35 fighter jetthe most expensive weapon ever madeis finally ready to see active duty over the Pacific Ocean. The U.S. Marine Corps expects to deploy 16 of the stealthy high-tech warplanes early next year at Iwakuni Air Station in Japan. From there, U.S. pilots will begin testing the jets in regular noncombat operations from the Navys USS Wasp amphibious assault vessel in what one commanding general has described as the school of hard knocks.

 

Its a curious choice of words considering the checkered history of the much-maligned and madly over-budget F-35, which has basically been taking knocks since it was first conceived.

 

Years of delays, management shakeups, engine and software problemsand most importantcost overruns have made this Lockheed Martin jet initiative a punching bag and pork barrel project.

 

As far back as 2001, the cost of the program was termed astronomical, with initial estimates pegged at $233 billion. The price tag has ballooned to about $400 billion, with plenty of glitches still to be worked out. (A high-ranking member of the Pentagon is denigrating the jets for their defects even as theyre being declared ready for combat.) Throw in the average price of $135 million a plane and pilot helmets that will run $400,000 apiece, and the total cost of the F-35 program will exceed $1.1 trillion.

 

In case youve been wondering where your hard-earned tax dollars go, now you know.

 

Recent efforts to reel in costs have bordered on satire. In July, Lockheed Martin announced plans to spend an additional $170 million as part of a cost-reduction program that it claimed would reduce other costs by $1 billion over five years. Then just a month later, the Pentagon approved an additional $1 billion for Lockheed Martin to offset the aerospace companys costs to suppliers, effectively wiping out whatever taxpayer savings Lockheed had been touting just weeks earlier.

 

Despite the many problems and immense costs, the F-35 program is so intricately linked to the military-industrial complex that efforts to rein it in have been fruitless. Major global politically connected aerospace companies involved: In addition to Lockheed Martin theres Pratt & Whitney, Northrup Grumman, Britains BAE Systems and Norways Kongsberg Gruppen.

 

Then theres the complex network of 1,300 smaller suppliers that are providing everything from the wiring to software code. And there are the American jobs hanging in the balance: More than 130,000 people in 45 states are employed by the F-35 program, according to Bloomberg, making it the most striking example of a U.S. defense project becoming so ingrained into the fabric of the U.S. economy that trying to tamp its excesses becomes politically unpopular and economically painful.

 

Peacenik former presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders has quietly courted Lockheed Martin to bring business to his home state of Vermont even as he has derided the defense industries. In an odd twist, the normally hawkish Sen. John McCain has emerged as one of the most acid-tongued opponents of the program.

 

Meanwhile, problems with the jets are nowhere near being resolved. Although deployment of the F-35B (the one that can take off and land both horizontally and vertically) is slated for early next year, any of the numerous test flights could uncover more new problems.

 

Both the U.S. Marine Corps and the U.S. Air Force have recently declared their versions of the F-35 combat ready, but a memo issued in late August from the Pentagons top testing official, Michael Gilmore, lambasted assertions that the planes were anywhere near ready, declaring them unsuitable for combat missions. The planes will need support to locate and avoid modern threats, acquire targets and engage formations with enemy fighter aircraft due to outstanding performance deficiencies, the 16-page memo first acquired by Bloomberg stated.

 

Among the problems: The jets dont carry much ordnance (just two missiles and two bombs), possess a poor cannon design that reduces accuracy and lack the capacity of existing jets when in close air-support situations.

 

But the U.S. Armed Forces is moving ahead with the F-35 anyway. After 20 years and $400 billion of taxpayer money, the military has spent too much not to go the last yardand $700 billionto see this program through.

Leaders don't have to know the job at hand, they only need to know how to manage the people on hand, under society's thumb, and boot.

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The F-35 is flying around Boise all the time. It's a training center where they bring in pilots from all over the country to teach them how to fly it.

The pilots all rave about how it handles and how little effort it takes to fly this plane compared to the F-18 or 22, leaving them free to worry about other things, like enemy threats, targeting and ground support.


I just hope that someday we can spend 1.1 Trillion on helping people instead of killing them.

I agree, the war on poverty has been a massive failure. Only $22 Trillion spent, and we still have almost the same percentage of people in poverty - meaning a lot MORE people, because of course our population has increased.

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I just hope that someday we can spend 1.1 Trillion on helping people instead of killing them.

Wow. Did watching Bambi as a child mess you up this much? Or was it Dumbo? Damn if elephants can be imagined flying, anything is possible.

 

Look beyond the surface of your high and mighty moral standard and see these aircraft didn't build themselves and it took many jobs just to produce the materials needed to assemble them. Between imagined and working product as imagined doesn't happen instantly while self contained to the instant everything is equally spaced apart within.

 

What is the space between the words defend and protect? Defend ideas and protect the lives living the idealisms of what life could be rather than remains in plain sight? Defending what is possible destroys what is as does naturally.

 

With great power comes a greater responsibility to know how to harness it rather than unleash it without proper restraint individually.

 

My point, know the limits of anything imagined possible as relative to the limits of everything equally spaced apart now. Self containment only works one way and it doesn't choose sides other than the choices made by those inside the moment here.

 

Last thing, time and money are both hypothetical concepts used to measure actual existing in plain sight psychologically. That developing patterns of behavior on what types of ancestors behave specific ways from specific details and results around them.

 

The study of nature in behavior doesn't study how things are self contained to now. Just finds ways to increase the percentages of guessing what people do socially when stressed to react violently in self preservation as an individual and collective mind..

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North Korea and Iran.

 

Remember W,

 

He let China buy IBM,

 

Reagan sold arms to Iran,

 

Bush 1(W and brothers) has in fingers in all the war profiteering,

 

The military suppliers are funding congressmen and women's retirement with cash contributions while they both line their pockets.

 

Didn't I read somewhere that the GAO reported that the cost of each F-35 would be over $400,000,000 each by the time it all done?

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Liar

 

http://www.cnn.com/2016/09/16/politics/us-air-force-grounds-f-35/

 

US Air Force grounds F-35 fighter jets

 

The F-35 jet has been described as the most expensive weapons system in history with a program cost estimated to be $400 billion.

 

Seems like I am liar talking about 1.1 trillion

 

lol... you're a fucking idiot.

Here, let me shove this up your ass:

 

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