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Dec 15, 2011

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Dfens

Hey there, J Allen, socialism isn't a bad word. Our military is a socialist enterprise. It is wholly run by the government. Our founding fathers weren't Ayn Rand purists. They were practical men who used capitalism where capitalism works best and socialism where socialism works best.

Now that said, I'm with you on wanting to use capitalism wherever possible, because clearly it gives a better result in terms of innovation and cost. In the case of these fighter jets, though, companies like Lockheed and Boeing have threatened for years to "no compete" contracts that were not favorable enough for them. I too say, "screw you" to those jerks. You don't want to compete, then let the US Air Force build its own planes. There's nothing that prevents them from hiring the same people Lockheed and Boeing employ now.

And how bad could socialism be? Could it possibly be worse than paying a contractor a profit incentive to drag out development for 2 or 3 decades like we do now? Could it be worse than telling the contractor, build the airplane as expensive as you want it to be and we'll pay you 10% profit on top of that? Yeah, then we can't believe it when the price per airplane goes through the roof! Gee, who could have possibly seen that coming?

Your idea has more merit than you know, and plenty of historical backing too. Back when our Navy was 700 to 1000 bad ass ships instead of 250 limp ships like today, the Navy designed and built their own ships in their own ship yards. Plus, remember Werner Von Braun? Yeah, he was a NASA employee. He didn't work for Boeing or Lockheed. Back when he designed our rockets we could go to the Moon. Ever since they started contracting out their rocket designs, we've been stuck in low Earth orbit, not able to go anywhere. Don't give up on your idea, J. Allen. Talk to your friends about it. It has merit.

J. Allen

Where is the outrage...........Lockheed Martin continues to fleece the public........and the Congressman that support this program should be ran out of Washington! The Air Force maintains a civilian workforce that regularly works alongside the military and maintains the "legacy" aircraft. There is NO reason that workforce could not handle a cradle to grave weapon system without Lockheed and their stockholders. I am not a proponent of socialism, but our nations defense should be treated more carefully.

duursa

leakage of this report is just a tactic of US

George B

If we know what we want and have laid it out for the company and they want to sell their product to us, there should be no cost over-run. It's just like buying a car the company has to shoulder some of the costs. Their are other companies that would love to have this contract. Take politics out of the process.

imispgh

http://www.f-16.net/news_article3635.html

Dfens

Wow, it's almost as if Lockheed plans to use these problems as an excuse to drag out development. You don't suppose their approach has anything to do with the fact that their contract covers all of their development costs and provides them with a 10% profit on top of those costs? I mean, it sure doesn't provide them with a lot of incentive to get things done in a hurry, does it? The longer they drag things out, the more profit they make. What a brilliant way we've found to build weapons. Hell, we'd be better off to pay the USAF, a "not for profit" enterprise to design and build their own aircraft. I know it is *gasp* socialist, but then so is the US Air Force. That's why they're "not for profit". In fact, they seem to be for losing as much our money as possible.

It is funny, though, we pay a "for profit" company more to screw over the US taxpayer and the small minority of our military forces who actually fight our wars, and then tell them that this is the "capitalist way of building weapons," as if just using the word in a sentence makes the fact that all the capitalist incentives reward these contractors for screwing the taxpayer and soldier all magically ok.

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