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Defense Secretary Gates loses another one…..The House Armed Services Committe goes ahead with a second F-35 engine …….

F-35 Lightning II

Defense Secretary Gates is putting himself in a position to be the next Obama employee to resign….

He has come out forcefully against funding a second engine option for the F-35 Lighting , ‘everything’ Fighter….

Congress really does care what he thinks….

He has mentioned that the he thinks the President has his ‘back’ on this one and would veto* the whole defense spending bill to make the point….

I wouldn’t bet on this…..

The President simply doesn’t need this fight on ‘defense jobs’ issue…..

The House members have also mentioned cost competition factors….

U.S. lawmakers are moving ahead with their pledge to fund the F136 alternate engine for the F-35 Lightning II fighter jet, inserting funding in the House Armed Services Committee’s markup of the 2011 defense authorization bill.

Made by a GE/Rolls-Royce team, the engine would compete with Pratt & Whitney’s F135.

Rep. Roscoe Bartlett, R-Md., said May 19 during the markup that “competition is warranted and critical and costs nothing more, according to the GAO.”

F136 supporters on Capitol Hill say competition could save millions of dollars by driving engine costs down and ensuring high quality from the engine-makers.

GE officials lauded the committee’s move.

“Given the enormity of the JSF program, competing engines on the aircraft is the best way to put the acquisition reform act into action,” said David Joyce, CEO of GE Aviation. “With the growing concern over cost overruns in defense programs, competition continues to be the best cost-control mechanism.”

The Pentagon is fighting the idea, saying an alternate engine will save no money and that it is a distraction for the troubled F-35 program. Defense Secretary Robert Gates has said he will recommend that President Obama veto the bill if it has alt-engine funds.

In addition to funding development work on the engine, the markup orders the Pentagon to budget for the engine in 2012.

The markup also takes a step to force DoD to actually use the funds authorized for F136 development by limiting F-35 development funds in 2011 “to 75 percent until the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics certifies that all funds for development and procurement of the F-35 competitive propulsion system have been obligated,” Air Land subcommittee chairman, Rep. Adam Smith, D-Wash., said…….

The buy has bipartisan support and will keep the British happy also…..

They will purchase about a 100 of the jet fighters……

More……..

* Defense Secretary Robert Gates on Thursday expressed confidence that President Barack Obama would veto the defense authorization bill over a backup engine for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter.

Gates has repeatedly said, including in congressional testimony, that he would strongly recommend the president veto any defense bills that continue the development of the secondary F-35 engine, made by General Electric and Britain’s Rolls Royce.

“I obviously did not issue the statement that I did in my testimony on the Hill without talking with the president first,” Gates said during a Pentagon conference Thursday. “I try not to climb too far out on a limb without knowing nobody is back there with a saw.”

House defense authorizers on Wednesday greenlit another $485 million for the development of the GE-Rolls Royce engine that the Pentagon and White House do not want.

If the final House version of the 2011 defense authorization bill maintains the secondary engine funds it would be the first step in what is likely to be a months-long standoff between the Obama administration and Congress.

But Gates indicated that Obama would follow through on the veto recommendation.

“We will have to see at the time if the decision has to be made, but he [Obama] was fully aware that I was going to make that statement, and frankly I think that if he were not prepared to substantiate that he probably would have waved me off at the time,” Gates said.

The House could take up the authorization bill as early as next week. The Senate Armed Services Committee has yet to write its version of the bill. Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.) strongly supports the second engine, but faces opposition from Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.), the ranking member, and Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.). Pratt & Whitney, the primary engine-maker, is based in Lieberman’s state and the company has lobbied for years to remain the sole engine-maker for the newest fighter jet…..

More……..

Right after Gates left the Commmittte vote FOR the second engine…..

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May 20, 2010 Posted by | Aircraft, Blogs, Breaking News, Counterpoints, Government, Media, Men, Military, Politics, Projections, The Economy, Updates | , , , | 7 Comments

Boeing threatens to NOT bid on thr Aerial Tanker contract…Are they serious?

[ The Boeing 767 based Aerial Tanker in Italian Air Force colors ]

I wouldn’t think so…….

The Dog see’s this as a chess move….

They are complaining about Airbus subsidies…..

Airbus IS supported by the French, British, German and Italian countries…..

That’s fact….

It isn’t gonna change anytime soon in this economic atmosphere…

But lets be fair here…

The United States government goes to bat for Boeing  with tax credits and reserach…..and provides subsidies for countries that buy American Defense products…..

WTF?

The Dog still does not understand why PRESIDENT OBAMA doesn’t over-rule Defense Secretary Gates and cut a duel award contract deal????

It is a win-win solution to a big problem….

Boeing wins with a smaller tanker…

Airbus wins with a larger tanker….

The state of Washington winds with a order for airplanes…

The state of Alabama wins with an order for airplanes….

The Europeans are happy the American brought their plane…

And the Air Force finally will get a replacement ‘short ‘ tanker and ‘bridge’ tanker…..

JUST LIKE THEY HAVE NOW……(KC-135 and the KC-10 )….

WHAT IS HOLDING THEM UP????

TELL GATES HE WORKS THE PRESIDENT…..IT’S NOT THE OTHER WAY AROUND!!!

Boeing is considering not bidding for the U.S. Air Force’s KC-X tanker contract, a company source said May 14.

That would leave Europe’s EADS – which earlier this year had threatened its own pullout – as the sole bidder for the multibillion-dollar prize.

CEO Jim McNerney and other executives are privately debating whether their company can even win, much less make a profit, on the fixed-price contract, one senior Boeing executive said.

“Is it conceivable that we wouldn’t bid?” the executive said. “We are proud of the fleet and want it to win the contract so the Air Force keeps flying our planes. Your heart says you have to be part of it, but a CEO’s job is to make sure that the heart doesn’t make a decision the head can’t live with.”

Boeing spokesman Damien Mills insisted May 13 that the firm will bid.

But Boeing supporters have long complained that illegal subsidies would lower EADS’ bid price, and company officials have said for several weeks that the Pentagon appears to have shifted requirements to favor the European firm.

Earlier this year, DoD officials – eager to avoid a sole-source award to Boeing in the wake of Northrop Grumman’s withdrawal – delayed the bidding deadline 60 days to allow EADS to bid. DoD also allowed the European firm to enter the contest without a U.S. firm as a partner.

Pentagon officials say they have changed neither the requirements nor the way the bids will be evaluated.

“Jim doesn’t want to be in a position that we are going to bid a losing bid,” the Boeing executive said. “It gets difficult when you’re dealing with a competitor who has flat-out said on several occasions that they’re going to underbid us. How can they do that if the list price of their plane is higher than the list on our plane? Because they are subsidized and we’re a for-profit company, so the question we’re asking is: How do we compete against four governments?”

The average cost of a Boeing 767-200ER is $133 million, of an Airbus A330-200F, $194.8 million, according to Teal Group aviation analyst Richard Aboulafia.

The executive said Boeing has not arrived at a decision. He said raising the prospect of sitting out was not a negotiating tactic. ( BULL S*#T)

………..

Boeing executives and its supporters say Airbus, which has garnered more than half of the commercial jet market in recent years, has been powered by nearly $200 billion in subsidies over four decades. The World Trade Organization recently resolved a 2009 lawsuit filed by the U.S. government, finding Airbus guilty of using illegal subsidies to win contracts with predatory pricing. Europe has countersued, claiming Boeing benefits from research and development tax credits.

More……..

May 14, 2010 Posted by | Aircraft, Blogs, Breaking News, Counterpoints, Government, Media, Men, Military, PoliticalDog Calls, Politics, The Economy, Updates | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Congress continues to fund Defense programs ignoring Secertary Gates…..

The Dog predicted this would occur…..

While he WILL get a few bucks cut here and there…..

Congress is simply not going to let Defense Secretary Gates turn off the tap of money for the nations military…

I have listed three examples of Congress going ahead with funding for projects Gates insists that he doesn’t want …or need…..

His problem is Congress signs the checks……he doesn’t…….

And programs produce jobs..which produce votes….


Despite the Pentagon’s continued resistance to developing a second engine for the F-35 Lightning II strike fighter, the U.S. House Armed Services Committee’ seapower panel subcommittee markup of the 2011 defense authorization legislation again authorizes the Pentagon to move ahead.

The move “reaffirms the subcommittee’s commitment to the alternate engine program as the best insurance against spiraling development costs and contractor responsiveness for the primary engine,” said subcommittee chairman Rep. Gene Taylor, D-Miss., during the subcommittee’s May 13 mark up of the bill on Capitol Hill. Taylor said the continued development of the F136 will not reduce the Pentagon’s requested budget for the F-35…….

More……..

U.S. House Armed Services seapower panel chairman Rep. Gene Taylor, D-Miss., will work to insert language into the 2011 defense authorization bill requiring the U.S. Navy to replace every two warships it retires in the coming years with three brand-new ships. It’s a move designed to get to a 313-ship fleet.

“There have now been at least three [Chiefs of Naval Operations] who tell us that they need a minimum of 313 ships and yet they submit budget requests that don’t get them anywhere near that – in fact, this request would actually take us backward by about four ships if enacted,” Taylor told reporters May 13 after his subcommittee’s mark of the bill.

More……..

The U.S. House subcommittee that oversees missile defense programs voted May 12 to boost spending on them in 2011, disregarding the president’s February budget request and more recent warnings from the defense secretary that defense spending must be restrained.

The House Armed Services strategic forces subcommittee added $361.6 million to next year’s defense budget to beef up ballistic missile defense programs. That includes $50 million for the Airborne Laser, a 15-year-old program so plagued by problems and delays that Defense Secretary Robert Gates all but canceled it last year.

More……..

May 13, 2010 Posted by | Aircraft, Boats, Breaking News, Counterpoints, Government, Media, Men, Military, Politics, The Economy, Updates | , , , , | 1 Comment

Defense Secretary Gates maybe getting ready to leave……

robert-gates-bigger

That’s the only conclusion the Dog can see in his latest crusade…..

I thought he was good pick to stay on…..

And he HAS done a good job…..

But I’ve had my misgivings about some programs that he has cut….

And how he has handled a few things…..

Marine One and the Refueling Tanker programs….

And taking the C-27J from the Army completely…..

I know Obama asked him to stay around for a while…..but he’s gonna be gone pretty soon….

Why do I say that?

Because he’s now vocally complaining that CONGRESS is giving the nation’s military TOO MUCH money and benefits…..

That isn’t gonna make him any friends on Capital…but it sure is gonna make him enemies…….

And he’s one guy against a lot of Congressmen and women…..

…..from both parties…..

Congress has been so determined to take care of troops and their families that for several years running it has overruled the Pentagon and mandated more generous pay raises than requested by the Bush and Obama administrations. It has also rejected attempts by the Pentagon to slow soaring health-care costs — which Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates has said are “eating us alive” — by hiking co-pays or raising premiums.

Now, Pentagon officials see fiscal calamity.

In the midst of two long-running wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, defense officials are increasingly worried that the government’s generosity is unsustainable and that it will leave them with less money to buy weapons and take care of equipment.

Clifford L. Stanley, the undersecretary of defense for personnel, told a Senate committee in March that rising personnel costs could “dramatically affect the readiness of the department” by leaving less money to pay for operations and maintenance. Overall, personnel expenses constitute about one-quarter of defense spending.

“Both sides of the aisle are trying to send a very clear message to our military that we appreciate their service,” said Rep. Susan Davis (D-Calif.), a member of the House Armed Services Committee and chairman of its military personnel subcommittee. She said the Pentagon needed to do a better job of setting priorities. “We end up with a false choice — are we going to fund weapons or are we going to fund people? The reality is, we need both.”

The Pentagon’s attempts to rein in personnel costs have also run into opposition from powerful lobby groups. “Any attempt to link rising military personnel costs with shrinking military readiness is total nonsense,” Thomas J. Tradewell Sr., leader of Veterans of Foreign Wars, said in response to Stanley’s comments in March.

Advocates for troops and retirees say the main reason for the increase in wages is that they were way too low to begin with. In the late 1990s, after the military had been whittled down in size from its Cold War peak, studies found that service members earned about 13 percent less than workers in the private sector with similar experience and education levels……

Like I said….This is bad politics for Gates……

In February, the Pentagon abruptly shut down a new tuition-assistance program for military spouses after it was overwhelmed with applicants. Defense officials had set aside $61 million for the program, which reimburses tuition costs of up to $6,000 per person, but discovered they might need as much as $2 billion to satisfy unexpected demand.

Congress chastised the Pentagon for mismanaging the program, which has since resumed, though defense officials aren’t sure how they’ll pay for it.

Gates is gonna be looking for new job pretty soon if he keeps at this….

Wait and see…..

More…..

May 7, 2010 Posted by | Blogs, Breaking News, Counterpoints, Family, Government, Healthcare, Media, Men, Military, Other Things, PoliticalDog Calls, Politics, The Economy, Updates, Women | , , , | 8 Comments

Gates admits the Obvious…..The US can’t stop Iran from getting a nuclear bomb…unless?

The Dog has been arguing this point for the last year….

If so much that I stop talking about the subject because President Obama seems to be in fairyland…..

No diplomatic policy is going to stop the Iranian from their goal of having a nuclear bomb and trying to further destabilize the Middle East…..

This certainly is no secret….

Even a lowly Dog can figure this  out……..

This is one problem Obama is NOT going to be able to bullshit……that’s not gonna work…

The question is…What next?

Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates has warned in a secret three-page memorandum to top White House officials that the United States does not have an effective long-range policy for dealing withIran’s steady progress toward nuclear capability, according to government officials familiar with the document.

Several officials said the highly classified analysis, written in January to President Obama’s national security adviser, Gen.James L. Jones, came in the midst of an intensifying effort inside the Pentagon, the White House and the intelligence agencies to develop new options for Mr. Obama. They include a set of military alternatives, still under development, to be considered should diplomacy and sanctions fail to force Iran to change course.

Officials familiar with the memo’s contents would describe only portions dealing with strategy and policy, and not sections that apparently dealt with secret operations against Iran, or how to deal with Persian Gulf allies.

One senior official, who like others spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitive nature of the memo, described the document as “a wake-up call.” But White House officials dispute that view, insisting that for 15 months they had been conducting detailed planning for many possible outcomes regarding Iran’s nuclear program.

In an interview on Friday, General Jones declined to speak about the memorandum. But he said: “On Iran, we are doing what we said we were going to do. The fact that we don’t announce publicly our entire strategy for the world to see doesn’t mean we don’t have a strategy that anticipates the full range of contingencies — we do.”

But in his memo, Mr. Gates wrote of a variety of concerns, including the absence of an effective strategy should Iran choose the course that many government and outside analysts consider likely: Iran could assemble all the major parts it needs for a nuclear weapon — fuel, designs and detonators — but stop just short of assembling a fully operational weapon.

More……..

Note….This story is quite frankly scary…….What have the people in our governement been thinking?

Why is this a wake call?…..Anyone with a half a brain could see this coming……..

April 18, 2010 Posted by | Blogs, Breaking News, Counterpoints, Government, Media, Men, Military, Other Things, PoliticalDog Calls, Politics, Updates | , , , , , | 4 Comments

Gates admits the Obvious…..The US can't stop Iran from getting a nuclear bomb…unless?

The Dog has been arguing this point for the last year….

If so much that I stop talking about the subject because President Obama seems to be in fairyland…..

No diplomatic policy is going to stop the Iranian from their goal of having a nuclear bomb and trying to further destabilize the Middle East…..

This certainly is no secret….

Even a lowly Dog can figure this  out……..

This is one problem Obama is NOT going to be able to bullshit……that’s not gonna work…

The question is…What next?

Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates has warned in a secret three-page memorandum to top White House officials that the United States does not have an effective long-range policy for dealing withIran’s steady progress toward nuclear capability, according to government officials familiar with the document.

Several officials said the highly classified analysis, written in January to President Obama’s national security adviser, Gen.James L. Jones, came in the midst of an intensifying effort inside the Pentagon, the White House and the intelligence agencies to develop new options for Mr. Obama. They include a set of military alternatives, still under development, to be considered should diplomacy and sanctions fail to force Iran to change course.

Officials familiar with the memo’s contents would describe only portions dealing with strategy and policy, and not sections that apparently dealt with secret operations against Iran, or how to deal with Persian Gulf allies.

One senior official, who like others spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitive nature of the memo, described the document as “a wake-up call.” But White House officials dispute that view, insisting that for 15 months they had been conducting detailed planning for many possible outcomes regarding Iran’s nuclear program.

In an interview on Friday, General Jones declined to speak about the memorandum. But he said: “On Iran, we are doing what we said we were going to do. The fact that we don’t announce publicly our entire strategy for the world to see doesn’t mean we don’t have a strategy that anticipates the full range of contingencies — we do.”

But in his memo, Mr. Gates wrote of a variety of concerns, including the absence of an effective strategy should Iran choose the course that many government and outside analysts consider likely: Iran could assemble all the major parts it needs for a nuclear weapon — fuel, designs and detonators — but stop just short of assembling a fully operational weapon.

More……..

Note….This story is quite frankly scary…….What have the people in our governement been thinking?

Why is this a wake call?…..Anyone with a half a brain could see this coming……..

April 18, 2010 Posted by | Blogs, Breaking News, Counterpoints, Government, Media, Men, Military, Other Things, PoliticalDog Calls, Politics, Updates | , , , , , | 4 Comments

Defense Secretary Gates has been asked to stay on……

In a vote of confidence…President Obama , as expected, has asked the Republican Defense Secretary Robert Gates, 66,  to extend his tour for at least another year as the nation top civilian Defense official……the Former CIA Director, and President of Texas A & M University and the 22nd Defense Secretary of the United States will continue at his job……

While I am disappointed at some of his decisions on equipment procurement and responsibilities…the Dog is happy to see Gates staying….he has a darn good Defense Secretary who focuses on getting help for the troops and backing his Generals……He also gets along with the Secretary of State..something that has been absent for some time in Washington D.C……

We wish him well in his continued government service……

January 8, 2010 Posted by | Breaking News, Government, Media, Men, Military, PoliticalDog Calls, Politics | | 2 Comments