Monday, March 21, 2011

So Buy Australia Already

Dominic Tierney notes that the projected cost of the F-35 Lightning II is more than the GDP of Australia.

The F-35 is designed to be the core tactical fighter aircraft for the U.S. military, with three versions for the Air Force, Navy, and the Marine Corps. Each plane clocks in at around $90 million.

In a decade's time, the United States plans to have 15 times as many modern fighters as China, and 20 times as many as Russia.So, how many F-35s do we need?

100?

500?

Washington intends to buy 2,443, at a price tag of $382 billion.

Add in the $650 billion that the Government Accountability Office estimates is needed to operate and maintain the aircraft, and the total cost reaches a staggering $1 trillion.

In other words, we're spending more on this plane than Australia's entire GDP ($924 billion).

Given that this baby is certain to be made instantly obsolete by the more capable robo-fighters that China will be building for about $179.85 a copy, I say, what the hell, let's just buy Australia. It would be a great strategic platform on the upside down part of the world, and give Eli a convenient in-country place to test his toilet flushing theories. With any luck, Rupert Murdoch, finding himself back in Oz, might leave.

I can't imagine why any Australians might object ;)