Defense contractors fear ‘Chairman McCain’ will cut them off

posted at 1:21 pm on June 26, 2014 by Noah Rothman

Conventional wisdom, propagated by shallow political analysis and Hollywood clichés, holds that Republicans rather than Democrats are champions of a bloated and corrupt defense industry. Not so, say members of the defense industry.

Sources in the defense contracting sector told Politico’s Jeremy Herb on Thursday that the prospect of a Republican Senate majority and a Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) is positively terrifying.

“I’ve heard several defense lobbyists and companies say under their breath they hope that the Senate doesn’t flip just to avoid a McCain chairmanship,” one unnamed defense contractor said.

The report indicates that some defense contractors feel he “unfairly targets them” and is “deeply suspicious” of some of the military’s private providers. McCain confirmed on Thursday that defense contractors were right to be afraid.

“I’m sure that many of them are very nervous,” the Arizona senator conceded. “If I were them, I would be.”

McCain added that he will pursue with “zeal” wasteful spending in the defense budget as chairman of that powerful committee.

McCain’s reputation is long-standing. He led a crusade against a 2001 Air Force deal to lease 100 Boeing tankers, helping to uncover emails in an investigation that sent an Air Force acquisition official and Boeing’s chief financial officer to prison. Boeing’s chief executive at the time resigned in the fallout.

More recently, he’s taken aim at some of the Pentagon’s biggest weapons programs, from the Air Force’s F-35 and F-22 fighters to the Navy’s Littoral Combat Ship. His latest target has been the Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle program, which awarded a sole-source contract to United Launch Alliance, a Lockheed Martin-Boeing joint venture.

“The amount of money given to these companies is staggering,” said Scott Amey, general counsel for the Project on Government Oversight, ahead of the implementation of budget cuts mandated by Sequestration in 2013, “but what is really mind-boggling is the willingness of the DoD to provide additional taxpayer dollars to the same bad actors again and again.”

At the time, many liberal Democrats supported Amey’s claim. It will be interesting to see if they still agree if Republicans retake control of the upper chamber of Congress.


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The report indicates that some defense contractors feel he “unfairly targets them” and is “deeply suspicious” of some of the military’s private providers. McCain confirmed on Thursday that defense contractors were right to be afraid.

Given that he’s been vindictive and spiteful toward Boeing and others for years…… well, that isn’t so much a fear as a reality.

Happy Nomad on June 26, 2014 at 1:26 PM

If the guy has the balls to cut military contracting bonanza, I say let Arizona can keep the fossil for a while longer.

Rix on June 26, 2014 at 1:27 PM

The same McCain that just barnstormed Mississippi with the Senate’s notorious “King of Pork?” Not likely.

Robert_Paulson on June 26, 2014 at 1:28 PM

McCain will be busy helping Cochran to pee.

Schadenfreude on June 26, 2014 at 1:28 PM

Say what you want about John McCain, but he has been a consistent bulldog against wasteful spending, on defense as well as domestic programs.

rockmom on June 26, 2014 at 1:29 PM

At the time, many liberal Democrats supported Amey’s claim. It will be interesting to see if they still agree if Republicans retake control of the upper chamber of Congress.

…if the contractors are in their state…democrats will be yelling ‘Rape’ !

JugEarsButtHurt on June 26, 2014 at 1:30 PM

hey how about that dang fence Johnny boy ?

dmacleo on June 26, 2014 at 1:32 PM

McCain will be busy helping Cochran to pee.

Schadenfreude on June 26, 2014 at 1:28 PM

Do either one have Parkinson’s?

VegasRick on June 26, 2014 at 1:32 PM

Just sign their contract letters “your friends across the aisle” and there should be no problem…

viking01 on June 26, 2014 at 1:33 PM

Can’t stand McLame – but on this issue, considering the examples cited in this article, I have to agree with him.
In over 30 years in the defense industry, I’ve seen some big time rip-off companies, and a lot of wasteful, often fraudulent spending – and Lockheed and Boeing have been at the center of much of what I’ve personally seen.
But a lot of it is driven by government bureacratic red tape and empire building – which leads to cronyism – which leads to fraud and waste. Government people get promoted based on the size of the budget they control, bigger budget = better promotions. You don’t get promoted by cutting your budget.

While I’m against defense cuts, especially just to shift money to “entitlements” for the gimmedats, DoD could make much better use of their money.

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 1:38 PM

…if the contractors are in their state…democrats will be yelling ‘Rape’ !

JugEarsButtHurt on June 26, 2014 at 1:30 PM

Yah – but would that be “rape-rape”?

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 1:39 PM

McCain needs to start with the bonehead government purchasing department employees who can’t seem to nail down what they want from the BEGINNING of the defense contract.

They often waste precious time and money because they simply have no clue and they can’t be fired for incompetency.

The contractors can’t work for free while they hem and haw over details. Start there….hire competent people who are good stewards with the people’s money.

kawfytawk on June 26, 2014 at 1:40 PM

Sources in the defense contracting sector told Politico’s Jeremy Herb on Thursday that the prospect of a Republican Senate majority and a Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) is positively terrifying.

Drop the koolaid bros, we ain’t getting the majority.

nobar on June 26, 2014 at 1:42 PM

McCain wants to arm the entire Middle East—the Libyan terrorists, the Syrian “rebels”, the Egyyptians, the Iraqi Sunnis, the Turks…..that’ll keep the contractors busy.

cthemfly on June 26, 2014 at 1:47 PM

McCain needs to start with the bonehead government purchasing department employees who can’t seem to nail down what they want from the BEGINNING of the defense contract.

They often waste precious time and money because they simply have no clue and they can’t be fired for incompetency.

The contractors can’t work for free while they hem and haw over details. Start there….hire competent people who are good stewards with the people’s money.

kawfytawk on June 26, 2014 at 1:40 PM

BIG +++++++ on this one.
DoD is notoriously horrible at requirements definition, and massive amounts of contract busting ECPs (Engineering Change Proposals) – to the point that many companies will low-ball bids to win contracts, knowing they can make a huge profit on the ECPs.

I was involved in several different ways with a major computer system contract that stretched through the 80s and 90s. The government ECPs got to the point that the prime contractor (Lockheed) told the government “any more ECPs from now on start at $1 million, no matter how small the change is”. That one computer system took 15 years and over $450 million to get to fully operational.

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 1:48 PM

Sen. John McCain (RD-AZ)

fixed..

hillsoftx on June 26, 2014 at 1:50 PM

Drop the koolaid bros, we ain’t getting the majority.

nobar on June 26, 2014 at 1:42 PM

And even if we did, would it really be any different with slimeballs like Cochran and McLame?

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 1:50 PM

Don’t know about F-35s, but considering their capability F-22s should continue in production. One can defeat any number of F-15s. I don’t know what the future holds, but if we lose it, it will make little difference how much less we spend.

Zelsdorf Ragshaft on June 26, 2014 at 1:53 PM

For McCain

Schadenfreude on June 26, 2014 at 1:57 PM

Rubbish! McCain is doing the same thing that Obama has done with Wall Street. Open up your checkbooks and you’ll get what you want, but if you are stingy or criticize me then you will punished.

Wigglesworth on June 26, 2014 at 1:58 PM

OT: Wow. Explosive!

ConservativePartyNow on June 26, 2014 at 2:01 PM

The report indicates that … he … is “deeply suspicious” of some of the military’s private providers.

I work in the field, and *I* am deeply suspicious of them, too.

but what is really mind-boggling is the willingness of the DoD to provide additional taxpayer dollars to the same bad actors again and again.

^^THIS^^ Given how much waste I’ve seen in programs with which I have been associated, I would think that most of the major defense contractors would be totally barred from future work. Period.

Two bits that chafe in this field:
– Almost no one has competitive acquisition any more. There’s no “OK, all of y’all design me a tank that meets these requirements, then bring ‘em out here in 3 months and we’ll see which of you did the best job.” All the contracts are ‘competitive’ on the paperwork end – once you pick a contractor, they get all the money and can spend lots of time and effort slow-rolling the job and milking the government for more money. (It also leads to an unwillingness to dump a contractor, since you have already spent all this money, and you want to get something out of it……)
– When the proposals are being evaluated, a big chunk of the score comes from questions like “Do you have experience with government acquisition processes?” and “How much experience do you have with governmental test procedures?” Which means defense contractors get picked time and again, even when they are a poor choice for the end system.

GWB on June 26, 2014 at 2:01 PM

…if the contractors are in their state…democrats will be yelling ‘Rape’ !

JugEarsButtHurt on June 26, 2014 at 1:30 PM

But will it be “rape rape”?

Ward Cleaver on June 26, 2014 at 2:02 PM

the prospect of a Republican Senate majority and a Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) is positively terrifying.

Well, McCain did crash a lot of planes.

faraway on June 26, 2014 at 2:02 PM

Yah – but would that be “rape-rape”?

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 1:39 PM

Guess I should read.

/duh

Ward Cleaver on June 26, 2014 at 2:04 PM

kawfytawk on June 26, 2014 at 1:40 PM

Oh yes, I have seen plenty of problems on the government side, too. And it is their problems that often induce the issues with the contractors. Remember that as conservatives we understand that rules and regulation produce incentives (and unintended consequences).

GWB on June 26, 2014 at 2:04 PM

kawfytawk on June 26, 2014 at 1:40 PM

Another little story along that line:
A few years ago I was managing a contract at the AF Academy providing research support for the faculty. The company I was with was an 8a (certified minority owned small business) when I started, but they graduated out of 8a within a year. As soon as that happened, the AF contracting office started taking work away from my company and giving it to a new 8a company who gave them less hours at a higher cost for the very same people. The lead contracting officer actually told me she “didn’t care about the mission of the Academy – she cared about about getting their 8a contracting credits”.

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 2:04 PM

“Hold out for a bigger kickback, John, that’s what I always do….”

——– Susan “Maine Twin” Collins

viking01 on June 26, 2014 at 2:05 PM

Say what you want about John McCain, but he has been a consistent bulldog against wasteful spending, on defense as well as domestic programs.

rockmom on June 26, 2014 at 1:29 PM

Well, it sure didn’t appear that way when it came time to rescue Thad Cochrane and his pork barrel ways.

butch on June 26, 2014 at 2:08 PM

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 2:04 PM

Yeah, the abuse of the minority-owned/woman-owned/small business set asides are legion. And they certainly don’t all come from the contractor side.

GWB on June 26, 2014 at 2:10 PM

Charles Keating could not be reached for comment….

viking01 on June 26, 2014 at 2:12 PM

Nice choice of that Kelsey Gramar pic for the front page, btw.

GWB on June 26, 2014 at 2:15 PM

McCain’s reputation is long-standing. He led a crusade against a 2001 Air Force deal to lease 100 Boeing tankers, helping to uncover emails in an investigation that sent an Air Force acquisition official and Boeing’s chief financial officer to prison. Boeing’s chief executive at the time resigned in the fallout.

This was a crime. Pre-meditated. The rules on this are quite clear. McCain had nothing to do with the acts committed.

More recently, he’s taken aim at some of the Pentagon’s biggest weapons programs, from the Air Force’s F-35 and F-22 fighters

The F-35 is a piece of crap. The F-22 is a lethal platform, but it does not carry anything that resembles a “massive payload”, and there aren’t nearly enough of them. Imagine an air war with China. We’re out-planed by about 10-20 to 1. Its a numbers game. They have more.

to the Navy’s Littoral Combat Ship.

Another piece of crap. Both of them. One can be taken out with an RPG, the other takes itself out with system failures which, by design, can only be repaired in port. And they’re out-gunned. Unless you consider that massive 57mm gun to an impressive piece of weaponry. Trust me…it ain’t. The CO’s and other Navy officials are pissed that these ships are out-gunned by corvettes that pack the 76mm Oto Molera. So far, at every international war game exercise, they’ve been “sunk” by ships 1/10th their size.

His latest target has been the Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle program, which awarded a sole-source contract to United Launch Alliance, a Lockheed Martin-Boeing joint venture.

There is no reason for a sole source contract. NONE. Whenever I hear “sole source” regarding DoD contracting, my BS converter screams “Kickback”.

BobMbx on June 26, 2014 at 2:18 PM

Yeah, the abuse of the minority-owned/woman-owned/small business set asides are legion. And they certainly don’t all come from the contractor side.

GWB on June 26, 2014 at 2:10 PM

So true.
The government is so uptight about their numbers for money going to “disadvantaged small businesses”, they very often give contracts to companies that are flat out not capable of doing the work right. And of course, there are plenty of people willing to take that money knowing full well they can’t do the work.
As a result, our military personnel get shoddy systems and/or support in the process.

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 2:18 PM

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014

Sounds about right.

McCain is like a bull in a china shop. He needs to understand that a 450.00 hammer is because of the near constant changes by the contracting office, having to have a CAM provide reports on building said hammer, the billing that is done in quadruplicate and of course the payment doesn’t arrive for 6 months or more if the A/P clerk is on vacation (and a TON of contractors are small operations and can’t run their biz like this) I know this is simplifying a LOT…..but you get my drift.

kawfytawk on June 26, 2014 at 2:20 PM

they very often give contracts to companies that are flat out not capable of doing the work right.

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 2:18 PM

Or, as I’ve seen several times, they subcontract to a BIG company capable of doing the job – almost entirely defeating the whole point. (Except of course for the money in the “minority’s” pocket.)

GWB on June 26, 2014 at 2:22 PM

Nice choice of that Kelsey Gramar pic for the front page, btw.

GWB on June 26, 2014 at 2:15 PM

I thought it looked like him. Just watched Down Periscope again – great movie. We have a government manager that is the personification of XO Fasco….

But what movie did he wear an Army uniform in? Can’t place it….

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 2:22 PM

We should have kept producing the F-22 and bailed on the F-35…

I have never understood the obsession of producing the ultimate do-all air plane for all branches of the military. It always turns into a budget debacle, and never lives up to all the hype.

Should have developed one replacement for the F-18 for the Navy and another replacement for the F-16 for the Air Force. We had the replacement for the F-15…the F-22.

Now we have a ungodly super expensive magic plane that never seems to be ready for service, that supposed to replace everything, including the A-10 (LOL), and yet do the duty of the F-16/F-18.

And to top all this off all of our most important allies are desperately waiting for it as well so they can replace their now aging Air Forces. Nice Job Pentagon…nice job.

It better live up the hype, and lets hope our Air Force this time is right that the age of dog fighting is over, because they have a history of making those predictions…Vietnam….cough…

William Eaton on June 26, 2014 at 2:24 PM

McCain is like a bull in a china shop. He needs to understand that a 450.00 hammer is because of the near constant changes by the contracting office, having to have a CAM provide reports on building said hammer, the billing that is done in quadruplicate and of course the payment doesn’t arrive for 6 months or more if the A/P clerk is on vacation (and a TON of contractors are small operations and can’t run their biz like this) I know this is simplifying a LOT…..but you get my drift.

kawfytawk on June 26, 2014 at 2:20 PM

And the massive amount of testing and documentation required to prove the hammer meets the specifications. It takes a lot of people, typically with government security clearances to do all that testing an write all of that documentation.

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 2:24 PM

“but what is really mind-boggling is the willingness of the DoD to provide additional taxpayer dollars to the same bad actors again and again.”

Of course they do. And just where do you think the “Princes of the Pentagon” go when they retire?

GarandFan on June 26, 2014 at 2:26 PM

I have never understood the obsession of producing the ultimate do-all air plane for all branches of the military. It always turns into a budget debacle, and never lives up to all the hype.
William Eaton on June 26, 2014 at 2:24 PM

Basic engineering problem. When you try to make something do everything for everyone, it does nothing well for anyone.

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 2:27 PM

I thought it looked like him. Just watched Down Periscope again – great movie. .

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 2:22 PM

“Something has to be done about the food on this sub! Yesterday I found a fingernail in my food and today… a band-aid !”

“Sorry sir, the band-aid was the only thing holding the fingernail on.”

viking01 on June 26, 2014 at 2:28 PM

viking01 on June 26, 2014 at 2:28 PM

Lots of good lines in that movie – hilarious!!!!

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 2:30 PM

The Defense Department and Pentagon are no more careful with public money than Education, the VA, or the EPA.

There is plenty of fat to be cut, and much of it built-in to military contracts. Some really has to be there, especially when there is only one supplier, it cannot be avoided. But there is so much that could be cut without endangering security that there is no sense worrying about those cases where we are stuck.

And both DoD and the Pentagon are bloated with people, too. As with most federal jobs, there is no real reason for it.

Plus we need to start retiring generals from the Pentagon, too. We have too many flag officers still serving. There are more now in one ring of the Pentagon than it took to win WWII.

Adjoran on June 26, 2014 at 2:30 PM

BobMbx on June 26, 2014 at 2:18 PM

Missed your comment…it should be read by everyone.

Lockheed Martin makes great specialized planes, but I am not sure they are good at producing planes in great numbers. Even the F-22 which I like has had all sorts of bugs that needed to be worked out. I can only imagine what the F-35 will have in terms of bugginess, add the the probably dud it will be to begin with…I have a feeling it won’t be pretty.

William Eaton on June 26, 2014 at 2:32 PM

Plus we need to start retiring generals from the Pentagon, too. We have too many flag officers still serving. There are more now in one ring of the Pentagon than it took to win WWII.

Adjoran on June 26, 2014 at 2:30 PM

Agree – BUT – far outnumbered by the masses of useless civil service types who do nothing but generate red tape in order to justify their own existence.

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 2:35 PM

Basic engineering problem. When you try to make something do everything for everyone, it does nothing well for anyone.

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 2:27 PM

I know it is like transformers…

Lockheed Martin to Pentagon: “It is a A-10…now it is a Harrier….and now it is F-15″.

Pentagon to Lockheed Martin: “Cool Man!…Give me the Magic Plane!”

William Eaton on June 26, 2014 at 2:37 PM

Nice choice of that Kelsey Gramar pic for the front page, btw.

GWB on June 26, 2014 at 2:15 PM

But what movie did he wear an Army uniform in? Can’t place it….

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 2:22 PM

Found it – TV movie The Pentagon Wars.
Never seen it.

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 2:40 PM

But what movie did he wear an Army uniform in? Can’t place it….

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 2:22 PM

The Pentagon Wars. About the Bradley Fighting Vehicle and its … woes. (Oh, and I should have typed “Grammer”, my apologies to Frasier.)

I have never understood the obsession of producing the ultimate do-all air plane for all branches of the military. It always turns into a budget debacle, and never lives up to all the hype.

William Eaton on June 26, 2014 at 2:24 PM

The drive to shed dedicated platforms and replace them do-it-alls has been pervasive since the 80s. It’s a desperate measure to try and rein in the incredible costs of these super hi-tech aircraft. (Not just the number of airframes – possibly even more important is the reduction in manpower if you have a Jack-of-all-trades aircraft.) The problem is that almost any engineer can tell you that building something that will do a hundred things will never be as good at any of those things as something built just for that purpose. It doesn’t mean you should never build multi-purpose aircraft, but it shouldn’t be such a fetish.

(Oh, and the age of dogfighting is pretty much over. A dedicated air-to-air fighter that can go guns on an opponent is a waste of money.)

GWB on June 26, 2014 at 2:44 PM

I know it is like transformers…
Lockheed Martin to Pentagon: “It is a A-10…now it is a Harrier….and now it is F-15″.
Pentagon to Lockheed Martin: “Cool Man!…Give me the Magic Plane!”

William Eaton on June 26, 2014 at 2:37 PM

Yup – and add to that the government propensity to keep changing the requirements – “make it also turn into a B-52,…. oooohhh and we also need it to be able to launch satellites, and brew coffee, and chop Julienne fries…” and there’s no way in he11 anything of real use will ever be produced, and there will be a huge amount of money wasted on it – and whatever comes out will be way beyond the initial required schedule.

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 2:46 PM

McCain loves to posture about cutting defense spending, but he really just takes aim at the projects that he doesn’t like. I think he does more harm than good.

Which is a pretty fair motto for his entire career.

There Goes the Neighborhood on June 26, 2014 at 2:52 PM

the government propensity to keep changing the requirements

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 2:46 PM

Some of that, though, is because the government has taken so long to get around to the actual procurement (because of red tape, and monkeying with budgets) that no one remembers the why and wherefore of the requirements involved – so they write a crappy proposal. The contractor agrees to what is in the proposal. Then people who actually have an institutional memory (read: some guy who wasn’t brought into the contract writing process or whose inputs were ignored) start asking why it doesn’t do Y and Z along with X. Then the legal arguments begin concerning “Oh no, that’s not what was written here” and “You’ll need a contract letter to add that – along with more time and more money” and such.

GWB on June 26, 2014 at 2:54 PM

GWB on June 26, 2014 at 2:54 PM

Gee, I hope I don’t sound bitter about DoD procurement or anything……

GWB on June 26, 2014 at 2:55 PM

Why are they afraid of only one person? There should be
an oversight committee for military spending. There should
be a concerted effort to get rid of waste. How about starting
with a 10% budget reduction?

How about 10% reduction in spending in all government agencies
for a start?

Amjean on June 26, 2014 at 3:20 PM

Gee, I hope I don’t sound bitter about DoD procurement or anything……

GWB on June 26, 2014 at 2:55 PM

A bit…. but I think that’s normal for anyone with even a shred of common sense and integrity who has had to work in that process for any length of time.
I’ve seen everything you mention, and then some, over the last 30 years:
- a comm system that required an airman to sit at a console and acknowledge (18,000) circuit status messages over an entire shift before they shut the dam thing off;
- a system that had the positions of our missile warning satellites hard-coded in the software so an emergency software change was required whenever the AF moved the satellites (which was fairly often);
- a space defense system that was initially so slow it took over 10 minutes to transition from page 1 of a display to page 2;
- once saw in an official design review meeting a Lockheed manager tell an AF LtCol “you’re going to take whatever dam system we produce and you’re going to like it” – cue “government caucus, all contractors out of the room NOW”;
and on and on and on…..

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 3:30 PM

- a system that had the positions of our missile warning satellites hard-coded in the software so an emergency software change was required whenever the AF moved the satellites (which was fairly often);

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 3:30 PM

Oh dear Lord. Yeah, I’ve seen similar. *shaking my head*

GWB on June 26, 2014 at 3:36 PM

McCain will be busy helping Cochran to pee.

Schadenfreude on June 26, 2014 at 1:28 PM

I thought McCain was a Depends user?

zoyclem on June 26, 2014 at 4:30 PM

I thought McCain was a Depends user?

zoyclem on June 26, 2014 at 4:30 PM

That’s how he has hands free to help Cochran…..

dentarthurdent on June 26, 2014 at 4:53 PM

Anyone who has attempted to read the FAR knows our acquisition process is f’d up like a football bat. It’s as bad, if not worse, than our tax code which is why the IRS and most acquisition commands are a bloated waste of taxpayer dollars.

Roc on June 26, 2014 at 5:50 PM

If the guy has the balls to cut military contracting bonanza, I say let Arizona can keep the fossil for a while longer.

Rix on June 26, 2014 at 1:27 PM

What bonanza?

Count to 10 on June 26, 2014 at 6:58 PM

Why are they afraid of only one person? There should be
an oversight committee for military spending. There should
be a concerted effort to get rid of waste. How about starting
with a 10% budget reduction?

How about 10% reduction in spending in all government agencies
for a start?

Amjean on June 26, 2014 at 3:20 PM

Because McCain has a history of picking the wrong things to attack or champion in Defense.

Count to 10 on June 26, 2014 at 7:01 PM

McCain needs to start with the bonehead government purchasing department employees who can’t seem to nail down what they want from the BEGINNING of the defense contract.

They often waste precious time and money because they simply have no clue and they can’t be fired for incompetency.

The contractors can’t work for free while they hem and haw over details. Start there….hire competent people who are good stewards with the people’s money.

kawfytawk on June 26, 2014 at 1:40 PM

That’s part of the problem … you negotiate a contract for what you say you want, then once the ink is dry you throw in a bunch of other stuff that’s not covered, and somebody’s gotta pay for that.

“Stealth? Gotcha. Speed? No problem. Gun? Wait, what?”

Ten different departments all doing the same thing and nobody talks to anybody else. No wonder our procurement process looks like a Frankenstein’s monster.

falcon on June 27, 2014 at 8:22 AM

Spent the last 3 years of my military career at the Pentagon. My head still hurts. The building is full civilians who could be fired today and nobody would notice they were gone. The acquisition process is a joke and is designed so that PM’s protect their jobs, not actually tell the truth about whatever piece of junk they are in charge of fielding. These folks were so pompous it was jawdropping. Kings and queens of their own little kingdom in the beltway. It takes years to speak the language so when you show up on scene you are already way behind the curve. I retired disgusted with the whole thing and have zero respect for those folks.

gator70 on June 27, 2014 at 8:37 AM