Friday, April 13, 2018

Another reason why the F-35 death spiral is inevitable. Congressman warns Mattis of "lean" future defense budgets...

via Defense News.
The Pentagon’s two-year budget boost may be as good as it’s going to get for the military, the House Armed Services Committee’s top Democrat warned Defense Secretary Jim Mattis on Capitol Hill on Thursday.

The comments come amid new government estimates that the U.S. budget deficit will exceed $1 trillion in two years, as tax cuts and spending increases signed by President Donald Trump do little to boost long-term economic growth.

As Mattis testified on the administration’s 2019 budget request, HASC Ranking Member Adam Smith, D-Wash., pointed to the downward pressure that growing deficits and budget caps could create in 2020 and beyond.

“While 2018 and 2019 are great, I hope you are also planning for a lean future, because we are looking at a trillion-dollar deficit this year,” Smith said, adding that the US national debt is approaching $22 trillion.

CBO pegs the 2019 deficit at $981 billion and at more than $1 trillion each year thereafter, for a total of $12.4 trillion through 2028.

Without “big picture” budget action from Congress, the nation faces an “enormous problem” fueled by its $1 trillion per year deficit spending habits, Smith said.

“We’re going to be right back in the uncertainty a year from now if we don’t come up with some comprehensive way to address our budget challenge,” he said.
Story here. 

The problem?  Defense Hawks don't care about budget deficits and neither do Democrats.

The stark reality?  The US can no longer ignore domestic concerns while some are pursuing global ambitions. 

From my seat balance was lost during the Bush Admin and hasn't been reasserted.  Even Obama went wild on foreign affairs (with a few exceptions for other BIG ticket items domestically) that continued the imbalance of ignoring the homeland while focusing on "shaping" the world.

That is about to come to a crashing halt.

What does this mean for the military?

They're in a hurt locker.

They labored too long on the F-35 at the expense of other needs and now we've arrived at a time when upgrades to other parts of our defense enterprise can no longer be ignored.

The USMC is in particular trouble.  What's coming up?  Finish buying MV-22 AND pay to reset the fleet to a common standard.  Buy KC-130s.  Buy whatever they're calling that "super" UAV.  Buy ACVs and then a follow up vehicle so that the AAV can finally be retired.  Make a decision on which way to go with the M1 Abrams.  Equip our other parts of the ground force from Artillery, to Grunts to even buying JLTVs.

And of course buying and bringing the F-35's we already have up to a combat capable standard.

Even if the F-35 was a perfect airplane we couldn't afford to buy the number allocated.

A death spiral is inevitable because it took too long, the good times budget is over and the battle between bread and bullets has already been lost because the Pentagon had fallen in love with continuous operations instead of victory and the American people are fed up with generational war after being at it for the last 20 years.

Side note;  Add the failed wars in the Middle East as a factor for the decline of the US.  What genius thought that a nation could be at war for over two decades and not want to look inward was smoking crack laced with fentanyl!

You heard it here first and the fanboys will go ape shit but the F-35 death spiral is here.

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