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The long, sad tale of the V-22

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ConradWeiser View Drop Down
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  Quote ConradWeiser Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: The long, sad tale of the V-22
    Posted: 04-Oct-2007 at 19:16
Has anyone read the latest edition of TIME magazine (Oct 8, 2007)?
 
In it is an article about the incredibly costly V-22 Osprey(development pricetagged at 20 billion and 30 lives), that is now being sent to Iraq. The problem? The cool-looking V-22 isn't even safe. Not only does it have a much larger death zone than any helicopter, it has no weaponry (except for a small machine gun, which they have to open the back ramp to use), no pressurized cabin, no autorotation (which saved half of the helicopter crews who where shot down in vietnam), only 62% reliable to be ready for action, and we are trusting in a piece of junk like this to protect and transport U.S. troops?
 
And the V-22 isn't the only fiasco, either. But the focus of narrow interest groups and huge military spending on miltary equipment that is not needed, not safe, or completely irrelevant to the kind of wars we now fight, is a complete outrage. 
 
The government currently spends $500 billion annually ($550 billion after Bush's 2008 demands) on the military. Needed for security you say? Well, that is a blatently misjudged statement. Only $200 billion of that money goest toward the Iraq war effort.
 
Furthermore, the estimated cost of providing every child around the world with a basic education is 6 billion. Similarly, the cost of providing clean water to everyone in the world is only 9 billion. Lastly, the cost of providing basic health and nutrition to everyone in the world is 13 billion
 
What if the United States was to cut it's military spending by one third? That is to say, cutting $166.67 billion from the budget (Bush's additional 50 billion not included), the military budget would still be an enormous $383.33 billion, but the United States would have 166.67 billion to give every kid in the world a good school, every family in the world clean water, and every individual in the world with basic health and nutrition, leaving 138.67 billion to equalize our schools and libraries, revamp the aging U.S. electrical grid and bridges, and to start paying off our 9 trillion dollar debt.
 
This makes perfect sense to me. But why isn't it happening? Because a few narrow-minded special interest groups with good lawyers want to keep production of military weapons in their own cities to prevent loss of jobs, and because the military is still in the mindset that we are fighting a conventional war and need conventional weapons.
 
PLEASE! Why do we need a 'stealth ship' at 3 billion apiece to use a gun that can shoot 100 miles inland when you can purchase a $500,000 dollar cruise missile that can be launched anywhere? Why do we need a program that is estimated to cost $100 billion developing the DDX destroyer, when a few radicals can load a small raft with home-made bombs and sink the thing?
 
Please, someone come up with a valid arguement for this extravagent military spending so that I can regain some sanity.Wacko


Edited by ConradWeiser - 04-Oct-2007 at 19:20
Another year! Another deadly blow!
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And we are left, or shall be left, alone.
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  Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04-Oct-2007 at 19:58
There is no valid argument when it comes to efficiency, nor on a moral basis. The simple thing is that sadly we have many interest groups that run the affairs of government through strong lobbies, and politician/entrepreneurs such as Cheney, and others that earn too much from such extravagant military spending to let it go. Why spend on things that do not gain immediate gratifaction?... is the slogan. The war in Iraq costs hundreds of billions in arms/ and reconstructions all of which is given back to the contractors that are tied to the politicians in the White House and the senate that approved such actions, and spending in the first place.
 
 
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  Quote konstantinius Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06-Oct-2007 at 07:40
It sounds like another "pork" cut out for the industrial-military complex. Hope no troops loose their lives on it. It's amazing how much money this country wastes on needles shit while the Prez vetoes a puny $ 60 billion over 5 years needed to include every child under 10 in an insurance program that, apparently and thanks to him, won't pass. 

Edited by konstantinius - 06-Oct-2007 at 07:41
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  Quote Leonidas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06-Oct-2007 at 11:06
yeah i did skim over that article. The osprey is great conceptually, bloody expensive though and yes the execution of that concept is questionable.
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  Quote ConradWeiser Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07-Oct-2007 at 23:06
Questionable indeed. The Marines even stated that there 'will be crashes' over the next few years, and that it was normal for this type of aircraft. Normal. They cite the jumpjet, which had many crashes but few casualties. The only problem is that the Osprey has no ejection seats with parachutes, and it is going to be full of Marines, not just pilots. Combine that with a almost 0% survival rate if it crashes while hovering, we could be seeing high casualties coming from this bird.
Another year! Another deadly blow!
Another mighty empire overthrown!
And we are left, or shall be left, alone.
-William Wordsworth
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  Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08-Oct-2007 at 04:42
Helicopters were notoriously unreliable in WWII (Burma) and Korea. The titlrotar is the way of the future, will make long range air assualts (up to divisional size) a reality.
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  Quote Justinian Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10-Oct-2007 at 06:31

Originally posted by ConradWeiser

Furthermore, the estimated cost of providing every child around the world with a basic education is 6 billion. Similarly, the cost of providing clean water to everyone in the world is only 9 billion. Lastly, the cost of providing basic health and nutrition to everyone in the world is 13 billion

If these statistics are true, words fail me.

"War is a cowardly escape from the problems of peace."--Thomas Mann

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  Quote ConradWeiser Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Oct-2007 at 06:56
Those are the establishment costs only. Though it would cost-according to Kofi Annon's research team- 40 billion annually to keep all of these facilities in opperation. That is still a worthy investment, seeing that the military would hardly miss it.
 
again, they are only estimated costs. And they probably dont take into account the war/diplomatic hurdles and problems. Just think of the $100 PC for kids in third world countries. They spent time creating a good $100 pc for kids accross the globe, and now countries won't buy them.


Edited by ConradWeiser - 17-Oct-2007 at 07:01
Another year! Another deadly blow!
Another mighty empire overthrown!
And we are left, or shall be left, alone.
-William Wordsworth
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  Quote Justinian Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Oct-2007 at 19:57
Well, you're absolutely right even then.  Hell, thats not even close to half our military budget.  Its sickening and appalling.
 
Obviously this will not happen anytime soon, but what I would like to see happen is cut our R&D budget to 1 billion and drop the army to the minimum needed to control the country, forget foreign engagements.  Its all just such a waste.  I still can't believe our military budget would EASILY pay for all that and yet we don't do it.  Like I said words fail me.  My opinion of Bush and our government in general drops daily; it can't go much lower.
"War is a cowardly escape from the problems of peace."--Thomas Mann

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