These weapons systems brouhahas is Congress always remind me of the insurance and warranty industry sales processes and the consumer’s attendant dilemmas. Buy a car or an appliance and brace for the decision: Get maximum protection, or roll the dice. Will we need all those F-22s to fight a major war against the Chinese or the Russians, as Rep. Rob Bishop and the F-22 hawks warn? Or would we be blowing our dough on a needless extended service protection plan that’s really the underlying profit motive?
I’m skeptical of the salesmen in this case, mostly because these are the same guys whose arteries pop in outrage if the federal spending in question has something to do with, say, health care or global warming. The Defense secretary and the Pentagon don’t even want the extra planes. Bishop, Hatch and Bennett are trying to deliver the local bacon to please all of us locals, whose livelihoods derive directly and indirectly from fighter maintenance at Hill. But you’ll never hear them reveal the truth about that sweet warranty.