After the world held its breath over the fate of President Obama’s beloved Blackberry (and we imagined a replacement), you could be forgiven for thinking that the primary crisis of his term had passed. Not so! No sooner does he retain his Blackberry than he is beset by another problem: the replacement of the Presidential helicopter.
His current whirlybird is getting old, though it’s still tricked out and functioning just fine. There are improvements that can’t be made, however, without an overhaul. The Pentagon saw fit to commission a custom EH101 that will cost as much as Air Force One — and I’m not talking about the movie. It’s too late to abort ($1.5 billion in the hole already), unfortunately, and Lockheed will be profiting handsomely by the deal, but cost overruns have resulted in the President (and runner-up) questioning whether they should cut their losses.
What do you think? Procurement money is obviously way off the charts, but it is the kind of funny money that often finds itself in those crazy projects that end up being things like, oh I don’t know, the internet. Clearly a billion-dollar helicopter is excessive to say the least, but if we don’t throw insane amounts at stuff like this, where would we get things like the ARGUS-IS and plane-mounted lasers?
[via the Register]