A message about spending

Published 7:52 pm Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Congressman J. Randy Forbes came to North Suffolk recently with an important message about the importance of military funding to the continued safety of America’s fighting men and women and the Americans they protect.

Forbes spoke during a visit to Lockheed Martin’s Harbour View location in which he and other visitors took turns in the seat of a cockpit simulator for the F-35 fighter, America’s most advanced and most expensive fighter jet ever. With a price tag that Lockheed Martin officials said they hope will eventually fall to around $75 million apiece, purchase of the nearly 2,500 aircraft planned for the program represents a staggering investment in hardware.

It’s a lot of money, but cost should not be the only determining factor in any decisions about the F-35 or, for that matter, any new hardware the U.S. military needs to keep Americans safe, both at home and abroad.

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Forbes’ comments warning about the danger of sequestration and other indiscriminate cuts in military spending are right on target. Military spending has a way of getting out of hand if it’s unconstrained, but slashing military budgets indiscriminately puts Americans directly in danger.

Folks in Suffolk can take comfort in the fact that their representative in the U.S. House of Representatives is fighting to protect the funds that support the city’s burgeoning defense industry and — more important — for the funds that give their fathers and mothers, sisters and brothers, aunts and uncles access to the finest military equipment, training and research and development available anywhere on Earth.