Let's go shopping with Donald Rumsfeld

f-15 July 4th. Time to sit back, relax, and watch five F-15s buzz downtown Tacoma. As the shockwaves pound you in the chest, you might wonder, where does the military get all their wonderful toys? Well, yes, they do have hundreds of billions of dollars to spend every year, but how exactly do you go about buying an Aegis missile system, a Pulsed Energy Projectile gun, or a $100 million V-22 Osprey

Look no further than the Integrated Defense Acquisition, Technology, & Logistics Life Cycle Management Framework:


(click to view the framework in your browser or download a PDF)

daudetailI won’t even pretend to translate this thing, (there’s a university dedicated to that task) but I will ask this: Where's the money? Budgeting and spending strategies take up less than 10 percent of the area on this chart. The chart outlines roughly five steps to take a weapons system from concept to deployment. When do solid (not "analagous" or "parametric") budgeting and accounting show up? I don't see them until step four under the heading "ensure affordability." Shouldn't an organization known for overspending strive to ensure affordability at step one?

I'm sure there are folks in our readership who are more knowledgeable about this than I am. Please, enlighten us.  


Compete to eat

KobayashiAs we celebrate life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness this weekend, FP thought it was time to delve a little deeper into another great Fourth of July tradition: Competitive eating. Our new Seven Questions previews the annual Nathan's International Hot Dog eating competition on Coney Island.

The cofounder of the International Federation of Competitive Eating dishes the dirt on world champion Takeru Kobayashi, talks about how international the sport (if that is the right word) really is, and explains how these men (and women) can eat 50 hot dogs in 12 minutes. Legal notice: FP takes no responsibility for any injuries sustained by Passport readers trying to emulate this feat.