Congress Never Stopped Producing Pork
In mid-January 2018, the U.S. House Rules Committee held hearings on the idea of bringing back earmarks. While some have been angling for this idea for a while, the immediate prompt was from Pres. Donald Trump’s recent assertion that if earmarks were revived, members of Congress would get along... Read more
The Triumph of the Military-Industrial-Congressional Complex
In his farewell address in January 1961, Pres. Dwight Eisenhower famously cautioned the American public to “guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex.” Today it’s routine for critics of wasteful military spending to cite Eisenhower’s warning. Unfortunately, Eisenhower did not warn... Read more
The U.S. Air Force Is Trying to Trick Us Into Getting Rid of the A-10
Literally for decades—since well before the 1991 Iraq war—the U.S. Air Force has been trying to get rid of the A-10 Warthog close air support aircraft. The A-10’s spectacular performance in four wars in Iraq—twice—plus Kosovo and Afghanistan has frustrated these efforts. In those conflicts, the A-10 outperformed all... Read more
How Much Does an F-35 Actually Cost?
The F-35 is not just the most expensive warplane ever, it’s the most expensive weapons program ever. But to find out exactly how much a single F-35 costs, we analyzed the newest and most authoritative data. Here’s how much we’re paying. A single Air Force F-35A costs a whopping... Read more
House Appropriators Added Billions of Dollars for Weapons They Like
Depending on how you calculate it, the House Appropriations Committee has added as much as $18.6 billion to the Obama administration’s military spending request in the Committee’s 2015 Department of Defense appropriations bill, HR 4870. According to the committee’s official report, this amount consists mostly of added hardware items... Read more
The House of Representatives’ Defense Authorization Is a Wasteful Mess
Last month by overwhelming votes, the House Armed Services Committee and then the full House of Representatives endorsed HR 4435, the National Defense Authorization Act for 2015. The May 7 vote in the committee was a unanimous, bipartisan 61 to zero. So proud were the panel members of their... Read more
Congressional Committee Just Voted to Kill the A-10—And Endanger Troops’ Lives
On June 10, the House Appropriations Committee made clear the way many on Capitol Hill view national defense. By a raised-hands vote of 13 to 23, the Committee rejected an amendment from Congressman Jack Kingston—a Georgia Republican—to redirect $339 million from operation and maintenance funds, deemed excess, to retain... Read more
The Pentagon Is Playing Games With Its $570-Billion Budget
There has been a short-sighted eagerness in some news articles and commentaries to disparage two actions by the House Armed Services Committee in the Fiscal Year 2015 National Defense Authorization Act. The HASC seeks to retain in the military force structure the Air Force’s A-10 Warthog close support aircraft... Read more
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