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McCain just lost my vote

Discussion in 'Political Zone' started by big dog cowboy, Mar 1, 2008.

  1. big dog cowboy

    big dog cowboy THE BIG DOG Staff Member

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    It looks like I won't be voting this November. There is no way I will vote for Hillary (please!) or Obama so McCain had my vote by default. Now that won't happen.

    Boeing Aircraft lost it's bid to build the new refueling tanker for the Air Force yesterday to Airbus. Airbus is a non-American company. Boeing had this deal in their back pocket until McCain opened his big pie hole a few years ago and questioned a bunch of things.

    Needless to say what he wanted checked out didn't pan out. Now the big announcement comes down and Airbus wins the deal. Unfreaking believeable. Obviously this news is the talk of the town. The jobs lost (actually not gained) will have a big impact on the local economy.

    Below is the story from the local newpaper. You will see Spirit Aerosystems mentioned where both my wife and I work. I know this is kind of personal story because we are both directly affected by this. But the underlying theme is that the new tankers our Air Force will get are mostly being built in France. Give me a huge break.


    Posted on Sat, Mar. 01, 2008
    Boeing tanker loss leads to anger, disbelief



    BY MOLLY MCMILLIN
    The Wichita Eagle The U.S. Air Force chose a Northrop Grumman/European Aeronautic Defence and Space Co. team for a $35 billion contract to replace its aging fleet of refueling tankers, dealing a blow to Boeing and the Kansas economy.

    The contract will supply the Air Force with 179 tankers, which will be called the KC-45A. It's one of the largest defense contracts in history.
    The decision, announced Friday afternoon at the Pentagon, caused surprise and outrage.

    "I am deeply troubled by the Air Force's decision to award the... tanker to a French company that has never built a tanker in its history," U.S. Rep. Todd Tiahrt, R-Goddard, said in a statement. "I cannot believe that we would create French jobs in place of Kansas jobs."

    EADS is the parent company of Airbus, Boeing's chief rival. Airbus is based in Toulouse, France.

    A win by Boeing would have meant jobs at its Wichita plant. It also would have meant work for suppliers locally and around the state.

    Boeing officials said they are still deciding whether to appeal the decision.
    The tanker is the top procurement priority for the Air Force, said Gen. Duncan McNabb, Air Force vice chief of staff.

    It will "give the Air Force true global vigilance, reach and power," McNabb said.

    Boeing has supplied tankers to the Air Force for almost 50 years and was favored to win the contract.

    "We believe that we offered the Air Force the best value and lowest risk tanker for its mission," Boeing said in a statement.

    The contract is the first of three that are potentially worth $100 billion over 30 years to replace the Air Force's fleet of about 600 tankers.

    Impact on Wichita

    A Boeing win was expected to bring 300 to 500 jobs to its Wichita facility, which would have been a finishing and test center for the tankers.

    It also was expected to bring 500 jobs to local suppliers, including Spirit AeroSystems, where workers build the 767's forward section. Boeing's proposed tanker was to be built on the 767 platform.

    In all, it would have meant up to 3,800 Kansas jobs and $145 million a year economic impact, U.S. Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan., and Tiahrt said last month.
    Boeing said the contract would have meant 44,000 new and existing jobs at the company and with 300 suppliers in more than 40 states.

    "They don't come along at this scale very often," Northrop Grumman chairman and chief executive Ronald Sugar said of the contract. "We do see this as being a very important component of our business for many years to come."

    The winning tanker

    The team of Northrop Grumman and the European Aeronautic Defence and Space Co. offered a tanker that best met the Air Force's criteria, said Sue Payton, the Air Force's assistant secretary for acquisition in Washington.

    The winner was based on five factors: mission capability, proposal risk, past performance, cost-price and aerial refueling abilities, Payton said.

    She declined to say where Boeing fell short until after Air Force officials meet with Boeing officials in a debriefing sometime around March 12.

    The Northrop Grumman/EADS team offered the KC-30, an aircraft based on the Airbus A330 commercial airliner. It is larger than Boeing's KC-767 tanker, a modified Boeing 767-200 commercial airliner.

    "I am extremely surprised at this outcome," said Lexington Institute defense analyst Loren Thompson.

    With the larger plane, "it means the Air Force was willing to completely rethink the way in which it did the mission in order to accommodate the potential of using a much bigger plane."

    'Incredibly disappointed'

    The decision spurred an outcry from Kansas' Congressional delegation and from state and city officials.

    Roberts said he will insist on a briefing by the Air Force to justify its decision.
    "If this decision holds, it will be at the cost of American jobs and American dollars, if not our national security," Roberts said in a statement.

    U.S. Sen. Sam Brownback, R-Kan., expects Boeing to protest and Congress to take a hard look at the selection process and the criteria.

    "I hope the decision will be reversed," Brownback said.

    Gov. Kathleen Sebelius said Boeing's tanker was the better choice. She said it provided a combination of military capabilities and economic benefit to 40 states.

    "We are incredibly disappointed and surprised Boeing was not selected," she said.

    Word of the decision arrived during a Wichita City Council agenda session, leaving Mayor Carl Brewer muttering and shaking his head and other council members talking about an "explosion in Congress."

    "How are they going to justify this to the American people?" Vice Mayor Sharon Fearey asked, later calling the decision "an affront to the American people."

    Joy in Mobile

    The KC-45A tanker will carry more passengers, cargo, fuel to offload and, in a secondary role, patients in air medical missions, Air Force officials said.

    Creation of U.S. jobs was not a factor influencing the decision, Payton said. Instead, it was based on what is best for the taxpayer and on performance, she said.

    The decision also was not influenced, she said, by a scandal in 2003 that derailed an earlier tanker contract with Boeing after a top Air Force official involved in negotiations met with a Boeing executive about a job at the company.

    "We've got it nailed," Payton said. "I don't see any relationship to what has gone on at all."

    The Northrop Grumman/EADS team plans to perform its final assembly work in Mobile, Ala., although the major sections of the plane would mostly be built in Europe.

    Northrop Grumman, which is based in Los Angeles, estimates the win will produce 2,000 new jobs in Mobile and support 25,000 jobs at suppliers nationwide.

    "I've never seen anything excite the people of Mobile like this competition," Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., said. "We're talking about billions of dollars over many years so this is just a huge announcement."

    Contributing: Bill Wilson of The Eagle, Bloomberg News and Associated Press.
    Reach Molly McMillin at 316-269-6708 or mmcmillin@wichitaeagle.com.
    © 2007 Wichita Eagle and wire service sources. All Rights Reserved. http://www.kansas.com
  2. theogt

    theogt Surrealist Zone Supporter

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    You know those ridiculous liberals that seem to blame everything on Bush? This seems pretty similar.
  3. burmafrd

    burmafrd Well-Known Member

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    Everything I can find says that the best plane won the competition. And that there will be a lot of jobs in the US because of this contract. So frankly anyone that changes their vote based on this really is not someone that makes a very good case for it.
  4. CowboyFan74

    CowboyFan74 Cowboys Analyst

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    Vote for Mickey Mouse..:D
  5. big dog cowboy

    big dog cowboy THE BIG DOG Staff Member

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    Airbus does not build a better plane than Boeing.

    The Boeing plane would also save 24% on jet fuel.

    There will be some jobs created in the final assembly plant in Mobile but the majority of the work will be done in France not the USA as it would be with Boeing.

    Boeing had won the contract until McCain stepped in.

    If I were McCain, I wouldn't plan on making any stops in Wichita before the election.

    Kansas is and has been a blue state forever. This year could be different.
  6. 03EBZ06

    03EBZ06 Need2Speed

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    I work for the Boeing Company, with a design team of future combat aircraft (Phantom Works) and it was a sad day to see our military aircraft will be built by a foreign company, granted NGC will be sharing the program. The NGC will be sharing government classified info with French and that is very dangerous.

    This decision will be setting precedence to award contracts to foreign countries to build our military aircraft, something we've not seen in the past. The military industry secret will no longer be secret and other contries will freely attain vast amounts of classified information. The secrets that we spend countless hours and effort to protect. This is a simply crazy decision.
  7. big dog cowboy

    big dog cowboy THE BIG DOG Staff Member

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    Crazy isn't a strong enough word. The people at work are stunned today.

    My boss told me this AM that his boss told him that Boeing will appeal this decision. Then in about a year the Air Force will make another statement announcing they will divide the tanker deal and give each company 50%. I really hope so.

    It's better than nothing but still very idiotic.
  8. Jon88

    Jon88 Benched

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    He did some research and found out there were some shady people in the Air Force and Boeing who were collaborating.

    I would rather have the best possible plane for the military. I don't want to settle for second best just because it can be built here.

    I'm sure the military knows a little more about planes than the average person, and I'm confident they made the right deal.
  9. theogt

    theogt Surrealist Zone Supporter

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    But they do build a plane that better fits the Air Force's criteria.

    Oh, a Boeing employee. I'm sure you're not biased at all.
  10. 03EBZ06

    03EBZ06 Need2Speed

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    If you read my post correctly, you wouldn't find any issues with NGC winning the contract but the issues concerning foreign contries easy access to our military classified info. But to people like you, I guess it doesn't matter.
  11. ConcordCowboy

    ConcordCowboy Mr. Buckeye

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    Well as the saying goes...all politics are local.
  12. theogt

    theogt Surrealist Zone Supporter

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    Yes, I'm sure we'll just open the books to someone building a plane for us. And do you really think we're going to war with France any time soon? Please, this is ridiculous overreaction.
  13. Jon88

    Jon88 Benched

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    LOL.

    They're building the shell of the plane but we'll tell them everything we know.
  14. 03EBZ06

    03EBZ06 Need2Speed

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    A simple "sorry about mis-reading your post" would have been suffice but as usual, you like to make it personal.

    You simply are a clueless person who think he know everything about everything. It doesn't matter who they are, we have technological advantage of building military aircraft. U.S. military enjoyed air superiority for long time because we were able to protect most of those advantages and now those information will now be shared, something we've never done before and there are reasons for that. You simply have no idea what all entails during R&D to producing aircraft, so stick with law to impress others of what you think you know about the law.
  15. theogt

    theogt Surrealist Zone Supporter

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    Dude, Boeing is a private company just like EADS. We're not losing technological advantages to some foreign state that would hurt us strategically. Boeing and EADS, two private companies, submitted proposals to the Air Force and Boeing lost.
  16. Hostile

    Hostile Peace Zone Supporter

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    I guess the only thing I don't get is the McCain angle. Did he award this contract? Were his questions about safety or technology issues? If so, isn't that what we'd want addressed? This was years ago and in the years that followed the concerns could not be adequately addressed by Boeing? I'm just not clear on why this would cost him votes.

    Forgive my bias for my Arizona guy.
  17. big dog cowboy

    big dog cowboy THE BIG DOG Staff Member

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    There was some shady dealing with the Air Force and Boeing the first time. That is why bids had to be submitted again and the whole process gone through.

    As far as the military knowing more about planes than the average guy that is true. I'm completely confident they made the wrong decision. You don't give our military secrets, tax dollars and take away jobs from the USA and give it to the French.

    Again, Boeing builds airplanes at least as good if not better than Airbus.
  18. big dog cowboy

    big dog cowboy THE BIG DOG Staff Member

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    After Boeing won the first contract, McCain stuck his nose where it didn't belong. Now, after all this time, the Air Force has decided to go with Airbus and not Boeing to build the new tankers. No McCain doesn't award the contracts an Air Force team does.

    I don't remember what his specific problem was with the first contract with Boeing. But I can tell you the military is very picky and makes sure everything is right many times over. Once the multi-year review is completed they very rarely go back and change their minds.

    Trust me that Boeing had all of it's ducks in a row with this new deal and the Air Force basically screwed the American tax payer.

    Bottom line, now that McCain has cost this area hundreds of jobs and billions of dollars by butting in a few years ago he has lost my vote. And many many others.
  19. rbr651

    rbr651 Active Member

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    After the F-22 I don't want to see Boeing with another contract ever. That is the biggest piece of garbage in the sky. I'm confident that Ford or Chevy could design a better aircraft.
  20. burmafrd

    burmafrd Well-Known Member

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    Actually a real good friend talked to some pilots who have flown the F22.
    THIER opinion is somewhat different then yours rbr.

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