Tanker protest will go on

GAO Declines To Throw Out Boeing Tanker Protest

The Government Accountability Office has denied requests from Northrop Grumman and the U.S. Air Force to throw out Boeing’s protest of a massive tanker contract award that went to Northrop and European partner EADS, according to Air Force and Northrop Grumman press releases issued late in the day April 2.

GAO called the Air Force request to dismiss some parts of the protest “untimely,” according to the release.

I think allowing the protest to go forward is probably the right thing. Obviously, if it fails it will end up being a time waster, but years have already been wasted on this. As much as the tanker fleet is aging, there’s time.

I’ve said before that the EADS plane should only win if it’s significantly better than Boeing’s. If it is, then they deserve the win and I don’t really see a problem with it. But if things are close, I honestly think giving the contract to Boeing is probably the best thing to do.

A statement from Boeing on the protest is expected tomorrow (Thursday. April 3rd).

Meanwhile: First KC-45 in Germany


  1. The Falklands has been inhabited by English subjects for almost 200 years. I don’t think there are any Argentines on the islands. I would like to see those losers try to take the islands again. The trouble is the lowly 3rd world nations like Argentina, Mexico and others don’t know their lot in life. The West has been so decimated by the PC police that we lack the confidence to protect our national interests. Argentina is probably claiming this because she sees Britain slowly becoming a 3rd world nation. They probably believe in a few years Britain won’t be able to put up much of a fight. Mexico is probably thinking about taking back some land too. They see the US as weak and unwilling to protect our borders. The latest ad from Absolut in Mexico City plays up this. It shows Mexico as they wish it were. http://snappedshot.com/archives/1830-Absolut-ly-Insulting.html Guys like Teddy Roosevelt and Winston Churchill must be turning in their graves.

  2. It was a KC-135 replacement program and Airbus proposed an airplane that’s bigger than a KC-10. Bigger and holds less fuel. I can’t wait to see all the new expenses this airplane racks up. There’s the expense incurred by the falling value of the dollar. The expense of building new hangars. The expense of upgrading the fields to support the additional weight of the A330. The expense of having to build new ramp space to accommodate the larger airplanes. Then you have the intangible costs like the fact that fewer airplanes means longer distances between tankers. Fewer booms means a bigger chance that you’ll have to wait when you get to one. The only thing better about Airbus was the politicians they had in their pocket, like Senator John McCain who just happens to have 2 key campaign staffers that are ex-Airbus lobbyists. It’s one thing for our politicians to be for sale to Americans, but ours are for sale globally. If you’re against that you’re an ‘isolationist’.

  3. NY Times/CBS poll: 75. Which of the following statements comes closer to your opinion -trade restrictions are necessary to protect domestic industries, or free trade must be allowed, even if domestic industries are hurt by foreign competition? Date, Restrictions necessary, Allow free trade, DK/NA 05/18/88, 56, 34, 10 06/29/89, 54, 36, 10 06/08/90, 51, 39, 10 06/06/91, 63, 27, 11 02/24/96, 55, 36, 9 08/05/96, 60, 31, 9 10/27/96, 63, 27, 10 07/16/00, 56, 31, 12 01/25/06, 64, 29, 7 04/02/08, 68, 24, 8 If they tailored this question to the defense industry do you think 2 out of 3 people would say we should protect that industry? As usual the people are smarter than the politicians. Of course, the people aren’t getting kickbacks from the Saudis and Chinese, so what the hell do they know?

  4. I’d dearly like to see a cage match between Dfens and SMSgtMac (from Elements of Power), inasmuch as their opinions are diametrically opposed on this issue and they both seem to know their stuff.

  5. That Sargent seems like another government guy who has learned to hate US contractors. Most of them learn that pretty quickly. I can’t blame them. We treat them real well at the beginning of programs and then later screw them over every chance we get. How many times have you heard a government contractor blame the military for the dreaded ‘requirements creep’? You know, sometimes they get so unreasonable. They expect things to work and stuff like that. We will manage to meet every requirement but the turkey won’t fly so those unreasonable government guys will write a requirement that says an airplane should fly, having never imagined that this wouldn’t be obvious and we will complain about how unreasonable it is for them to change the contract. The thing is, most government employees are as clueless as everyone else as to why our procurement system fails, even though they write the checks that reward the failure. They end up wanting to stick it to US contractors, but don’t consider what that will do to our nation. The US contractors are culpable. They lobbied the US government to put in place the current funding system that rewards failure. Even so, it was your elected representatives that voted for the current system, and they are the ones who keep it in place despite the fact that it is failing in a huge way. And ultimately what is our option to US contractors? Are we going to get better performance from a foreign company when we pay them under the same procurement methods that make it more profitable to drag out development and escalate costs? Certainly not. At least with a US company you have the patriotism of the employees working for you. In a foreign company they couldn’t give a crap about the US. We have to fix the source of the problem. Both the military bureaucracy and the contractors will offer up a myriad of scapegoats to crutch along the current procurement system. The current system gives the upper level bureaucrats lots of money and power and is providing record profits for the defense contractors despite the fact that profit margins are fairly small. The only people who are losing are the taxpayer and the soldier in the field. In my opinion, these are the most important people, but if they continue to let this military industrial complex to screw them over, know this, it will happen. There’s too much money at stake for it to be otherwise.

  6. For those of you who like to play Democrats and Republicans, at least you can know that it’s not just McCain who is for sale to the highest bidder. No surprise that Rush Limbaugh is encouraging Republicans to vote for the Clinton shemale. He’s owned by Dubai too.

    Former President Bill Clinton has earned $15.4 million from billionaire Ron Burkle’s Yucaipa Cos. investment firm since 2003, according to tax documents released by his wife, presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. The earnings represent 20 percent of the approximately $75 million Bill Clinton earned during the same period, according to the documents. That may raise new questions about what services he performed for Los Angeles-based Yucaipa, whose investors include the ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid al- Maktoum. Tax lawyers said the Yucaipa partnership income for Bill Clinton looks to be a form of salary because it was in round numbers for most years. ‘Most people who make that much money work for it,’ said Yale University tax law professor Michael Graetz, a former Treasury Department official in President George H.W. Bush’s administration. ‘What are they being paid for, and if it’s the Sheikh of Dubai paying the husband of somebody who might be the next president of the United States, what do they think they’re paying for?’ – Bloomberg

  7. As for Limbaugh being owned by Dubai, these are his words:

    All right. Let me very succinctly describe this United Arab Emirates port deal. I spent 30 minutes on this last week. I even told you about my trip to Dubai, described who these people are, what they’re trying to do. I went through the whole thing. It was up on the website. ‘Why aren’t you talking about the port deal?’ We try to look forward on this program. We stay on the cutting edge, but let me just very succinctly, and I know that some of you are going to have problem with this, economically it is a good deal. Just from a pure economics standpoint, it is a good deal. Politically it’s a disaster, and so what do we do? I guarantee you what’s going to happen is we’re going to come down on the political side. – Transcript from Liberty Post (you won’t find it on Limbaugh’s site anymore)