Military Spending

F-35: Blade Bummer

The news that the Pentagon’s fleet of 51 F-35 fighters has been grounded because of a half-inch crack in one of its engine’s turbine blade is one of those problems that can truly be called a teething issue: it’s something that …

Ages in which the dominant weapon is expensive or difficult to make will tend to be ages of despotism, whereas when the dominant weapon is cheap and simple, the common people have a chance. Thus, for example, tanks, battleships and bombing planes are inherently tyrannical weapons, while rifles, muskets, long-bows and hand-grenades are inherently democratic weapons. A complex weapon makes the strong stronger, while a simple weapon--so long as there is no answer to it--gives claws to the weak.
— George Orwell, 1945
I'm always troubled if we're trying to determine the adequacy of defense budgets based on real dollar levels in a particular year. I mean, I think you need to look at the threats that we face, and they remain quite substantial. I guess complex set of security challenges is the word. And therefore I don't think returning to some arbitrary past number for defense makes sense.
— Pentagon comptroller Robert Hale, explaining Wednesday why the Pentagon isn't able to live with the sequester-imposed budget cuts that would return it to its 2007 level of defense spending.
It had everything to do with 10 years of double-digit, year-over-year growth. There was no need to talk to each other. Everyone was happy. When we had a program that was bleeding, we cauterized the wound with money, because we had it. Expediency was the most important thing.
— Brett Lambert, deputy assistant secretary of defense for manufacturing and industrial base, explaining Wednesday why communication between the Pentagon and its contractors has been lacking in recent years.

Pentagon Budgetary Hat Trickery

The sky-is-falling game is now fully underway when it comes to the more than $500 billion in Pentagon budget cuts slated to begin March 1 if Congress and the White House can not agree on a $1.2 trillion deficit reduction by then. …

Nunn-Lugar No Longer?

Sam Nunn left the Senate in 1997. Richard Lugar lost his bid for a seventh term in May. So perhaps it shouldn’t come as a surprise that their landmark 1991 legislation, the Nunn-Lugar act that created the Cooperative Threat …

Exploding Budgets

The government is set to spend $640 billion on nuclear weapons and related programs over the next ten years.

If you didn’t know that, you are not alone. No one has put together a reliable estimate of these future budgets – …

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