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Once all costs are figured in Davis says the bomber will cost more than the target per unit

When we reported on the U.S. Air Force’s plans for a next generation long-range bomber priced at $550 million a pop, our commenters were quick to point out that there was no way that figure could be accurate. Military procurement programs have the tendency to spiral out of control with regards to costs, as witnessed by the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II.
 
The USAF's top acquisition officer, Lt. Gen. Charles Davis, agrees and says that costs for the bomber will definitely be higher than the quoted figure.
 
Davis said, “Is it going to be $550 million a copy? No, of course it’s not going to be $550 million a copy once you add in everything.”
 
Davis also noted that the military would try to stick as close to that budget of $550 million each as possible. One of the ways the USAF will try and keep to that budget is by preventing extra requirements and untested tech from being included in the platform.


Lt. Gen. Charles R. Davis, Military Deputy, Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition
 
And unlike the troubled F-35 program, the winning design team – Northrop Grumman or Lockheed Martin/Boeing – for the next generation bomber will only have to satisfy the needs of the USAF. The F-35 has to appease – and adjust to changing operational requirements from – the USAF, U.S. Navy, U.S. Marines and the numerous ally nations that have bought into the program.
 
The bomber program also got a significant boost in funding in the FY2015 budget when the funds for research, development, testing, and evaluation were bumped from $379 million to $914 million.
 
The USAF plans to purchase 80 to 100 of the new bombers. 

Source: Defense News



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RE: Divide by 5, Multiply by 6...
By retrospooty on 3/6/2014 2:57:19 PM , Rating: 4
" 2015 budget has defense at 59B. That is 22% of total spending. 26% is discretionary spending, the remainder of spending 52% is on social security and medicare."

I don't fundamentally disagree with what you are saying, but your #'s are way WAY off by almost a factor of 10. They are calling for a defense budget of $496-billion - which is a pretty steep cut already.

http://www.voanews.com/content/obama-holds-steady-...

Below is 2014's budget.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2014_United_States_fe...

Department of Defense including Overseas Contingency Operations 526.6
Department of Health and Human Services including Medicare and Medicaid 78.3
Department of Education 71.2
Department of Veterans Affairs 63.5
Department of Housing and Urban Development 33.1
Department of State and Other International Programs 48.1
Department of Homeland Security 39.0
Department of Energy 28.4
Department of Justice 16.3
Department of Agriculture 21.5
National Aeronautics and Space Administration 17.7
National Intelligence Program 48.2
Department of Transportation 16.3
Department of the Treasury 12.9
Department of the Interior 11.7

We spend more on defense than all other G20 nations combined and at some point enough is enough.


RE: Divide by 5, Multiply by 6...
By Solandri on 3/7/2014 6:02:41 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
We spend more on defense than all other G20 nations combined and at some point enough is enough.

That type of comparison isn't really useful. The U.S. and Japan's GDP accounts for about 40% of the G20's GDP (the U.S. is bound by treaty to provide for Japan's national defense). So it's not really extraordinary that U.S. defense spending exceeds that of the rest of the G20 combined.

A neutral comparison of defense spending is just to look at it as a percent of GDP. If you do that, the U.S. comes in tied at #10 (with Russia), and its spending is about 1.76x the world average (4.4% vs 2.5%).

If you add in Japan's GDP, U.S. military spending as percent of GDP is 27th in the world and just 1.26x the world average.

U.S. military spending is high because it's got a huge economy and we're treaty-bound to protect Japan. Not because we're spending an outlandish fraction of our productivity on our military. (Click on the % of GDP column to sort by that stat. The chart is missing North Korea, which spends about a fifth of its GDP on the military. So you can actually drop the U.S. another notch.)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_...


RE: Divide by 5, Multiply by 6...
By inperfectdarkness on 3/7/2014 6:10:32 AM , Rating: 2
Thanks. I was hoping someone would have brought up GDP. You also have to account for Russia and the USA being the 2 key weapons systems manufacturers (everyone buys their stuff) so that usually means those 2 countries also have to absorb the cost of development, etc.


RE: Divide by 5, Multiply by 6...
By Noya on 3/8/2014 6:19:42 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
You also have to account for Russia and the USA being the 2 key weapons systems manufacturers (everyone buys their stuff) so that usually means those 2 countries also have to absorb the cost of development, etc.


And rake in on and off the book profits from legal and illegal arms sales.


By retrospooty on 3/7/2014 7:14:18 AM , Rating: 2
Yup, totally understood, I was just pointing out our defense budget is almost 10x more than the poster I replied to said it was... I am not saying we dont need it and should cut it in half or anything. I am saying we need to cut everything, defense included. 10% or so to start would be good. NOt because we want to, not because of any political agenda, but because we are broke and we have to.


RE: Divide by 5, Multiply by 6...
By Noya on 3/8/2014 6:25:13 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
U.S. military spending is high because it's got a huge economy


Based on what? Printing dollar bills? Raping citizens with 30% +/- tax rates and then having them bend over again for medical insurance to take another 10-15% of their income while corporations get refunds? Education...the other looming bubble of this propped up economy?


RE: Divide by 5, Multiply by 6...
By FITCamaro on 3/7/2014 8:17:32 AM , Rating: 2
Yes and we defend more countries with that military than any other country too.

Like it or not, the world needs a leader. And I'd prefer that leader to be the US instead of someone hostile to us. Isolationism has never worked out for the better. I don't advocate for getting involved in every petty conflict around the world. Civil wars should be left alone. But things like Russia's recent invasion of Ukraine smacks of the kind of start that Hitler had where if the world had whacked him over the head right away, we wouldn't have lost tens of millions of lives in a conflict that spanned the world. And we should try to refrain from repeating that mistake.


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