Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The F-22; an unaffordable useless jobs project for politicians

At last new production of the F-22 fighter has been ended by Congress. There are currently 187 F-22's in service at a total cost of $67 billion. This is for an aircraft that requires 34 hours of maintenance on the ground for every single hour in the air. More important, this is an aircraft that has never seen a single hour of combat time, even though America has been in constant war since 2003. The F-22 is a useless and overpriced political boondoggle.

The F-22 is an aircraft that is designed to fight no known enemy of America either now or in the foreseeable future. There is no justification for spending more money on such as expensive waste. In addition to its extremely high cost per plane, there is no possibility that any other nation will buy F-22's and lower America's average cost because the law specifically forbids selling the aircraft to foreign nations. It is too hard to predict who America's enemies will be in a decade, and we don't want to sell them our latest technology today. Besides, they don't need the F-22 either - unless America decides to attack them.

Think about what the cost to every American family and American non-defense-related business of the constant war that America's mostly Republican and entirely conservative leaders costing this country are forcing America to fight. Here's what President Eisenhower said in 1953:
Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed.

This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children. The cost of one modern heavy bomber is this: a modern brick school in more than 30 cities. It is two electric power plants, each serving a town of 60,000 population. It is two fine, fully equipped hospitals.

It is some 50 miles of concrete highway. We pay for a single fighter with a half million bushels of wheat. We pay for a single destroyer with new homes that could have housed more than 8,000 people.
That's not to say that America should not be fighting against the al Qaeda, Taliban, or the narco-traffickers in Mexico, Colombia, Peru and Afghanistan. We should. But the expensive gold-plated flying machine called the F-22 has no value in those conflicts, and the cost of the things means that there are fewer resources available to fight those real enemies.

Killing the budget item for purchasing more F-22's is one of the rare good moves to come out of the Senate Recently.That $1.75 billion that congress tried to spend for seven more unwanted F-22 jet fighters can now be applied to bring down the total cost of a decent health care system for this nation. That is just under one one-hundredth of the estimated annual cost of Obama's health care plan, for those "fiscal" (meaning bought by the health insurance industry) Blue Dog Democrats. I'm sure that if the corporate lobbyists could be kept away from the corporate whores who populate Congress (and especially the rich man's 100 member protection club called the Senate) another 50 or so such budget cuts would be easy to find.


Anonymous said...

Poor post, a little more research required! The 100th F-22 has not been built yet (April 2011) so how you think there are 167 in service is a little strange, especially as two have crashed!

Anonymous said...

wow. the f-22 has just entered service. plus we already have air superiority in afghanistan. so the only aircraft flying there are A-10's and helicopters. so there goes half of your argument. this is just a hate rant. why dont you appreciate the accomplishment the developers have done. this is the first stealth fighter (except for the f-117, which in all honesty should have been classified as a bomber more than a fighter). It was expensive, but we are not going to get anywhere without spending money on technology. With the brains and teh money, the US have the best and most advanced fighter in the world. Look at the world news! Every country is trying to copy the design and stealthiness.