F-35 For Australia and Canada

It’s amazing how expensive a stealth fighter jet can be. And it just gets more and more expensive the longer Canada contemplates actually forking over cash for the fictional fighter planes. I was 14 when I last thought that fighter jets were the coolest things ever. I guess Harper never grew up.

My $600/taxpayer calculation has become a lowball conservative estimate many times over since first calculating with Harper’s misleading quote before the 2011 election.

9 responses to “F-35 For Australia and Canada

  1. Not all taxes are paid by individuals. Did you include corporate and other tax-paying entities in your calculation of $600/tax payer?

    • Good point Stephen. Do you know the proportion of corporate taxes collected compared to those from private citizens or other sources?

      The cost of the engine-less jets has gone up so much, that it’s probably still more than $666/person, despite the corporate tax funding too.

  2. No one has any idea of the actual unit cost any buyer will pay for the F-35. That defining moment is probably a year off at least, maybe two, even more. Our price will depend on how many everyone else buys, the US and other customers included. The cash-strapped Euros are losing their appetite for this single-engined money gobbler.

    It’s a really brittle technology, stealth, but everything hangs on this fragile technological edge. Once the F-35 is rendered detectable its military value is gutted. The Iranians got the keys to Lockheed’s design,materials and electronics secrets when they got their hands on a largely intact RQ-170 stealth drone. I’m betting the Russians and Chinese won’t be letting that sit in a Tehran hangar waiting to be taken out in an air strike. We probably won’t know for a couple of years the extent to which that RQ-170 drone has enabled the F-35s intended adversaries to defeat its stealth technology.

    For America’s potential adversaries, being able to destroy confidence in the F-35 at just the right time could be an immeasurable coup. If the F-35 flops it’s a body blow to Lockheed Martin and, ultimately, America’s entire defense industry. The damage could be irreparable.

    • “The cash-strapped Euros are losing their appetite for this single-engined money gobbler.”

      They don’t need them anyway, the Americans will always defend them if needed. At least that’s what they think.

      • Defend them against whom? Angry Martians?

        Even if it were a fine plane, it lacks one critical feature: an enemy to be deployed against. We might as well be gussying up some of our old nuke missiles to shoot down rogue asteroids.

      • Don’t you see Sunsin, we need fighters to deter the Chinese from making a move for world supreme government. We need the fighters to protect our trade route to China. Wait, am I making sense?

  3. It really is an all-eggs-in-one-basket fighter. Everyone on this side of the divide is supposed to use it, and it is highly dependent upon stealth technology remaining reliable for the next several decades.

    Harper supports it because, like his unswerving support for the Iraq war debacle, he’s defining our military by not what it needs, but by what is politically beneficial.

    As for the cost, well, it’s a cinch to pay for it. Just gut OAS, EI staff and so on.

      • Have faith in your newly elected Prime Minister Steven Harper my friends. It will all be paid for with Alberta oil and Saskatchewan potash. Thanks for all those shiny new F-35’s there Saskboy, couldn’t have done it without you.

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