A Con apologist recently posted a response to a blog criticizing the need for roads, bridges, and hospitals vs. the new jet fighters. Here's our response to these Neo-wacko-Cons...
Yeah... we don't need no stinkin' "bridges, roads, and hospitals"! I'd rather have a 35 Billion dollar pile of scrap (in 15-17 years) than permanent structures that actually help the population.
Technically the only airforce we need is transport aircraft to move our peace keepers and "peace-makers" around the world. If anyone ever tried to "invade" Canada US fighters from Alaska and Northern States would intercept them long before we could decide what to do. After that, ICBMs would rule the day - not ancient propeller-driven Russian and Chinese bombers.
The fanboys always want the toys. The police want armoured cars. Navy wants stealth ships now too... We need to address what we really need. We need coastal patrol aircraft. We need support and logistical aircraft. Airlift.
As an example of stupidity, I'll give you the M1 Abrahams MBT (main battle tank) and Hummvee. The US went to iraq with these toys - the most expensive tank in the world, and a glorified "jeep" with little protection for the troops inside. The M1 quickly was shelved. It breaks down in desert dust (that's pretty useless considering where most modern wars will be fought over oil), had problems with air con units, stiffling troops inside, and burned so much fuel that it was a logistical nightmare (you pretty much have to have an army of fuel trucks following it). The much lighter, more agile, Russian/Soviet T-72/80/90s used in most Asian armies can dance circles around the Abrams, and don't break down in jungle/desert/water-logged conditions. They have reacitve armor, and use FAR less fuel.
The US used the Humvee as a troop transport. These had to be retrofitted to protect the troops. The British and Germans use the Mercedes "G-wagons" which are superior for protecting the troops inside, better on fuel, and smaller/more nimble. This makes them a much better choice. Also, not being GM-made makes them more durable.
Canadian armed forces "experts" wanted Humvees and M1s too. They claimed they would "allow us to integrate into the US forces". Hogwash. We're sure some Armed Forces "experts" think we should have ICBMs tipped with nukes too. The Indian Air Force has fitted Russion Sukhoi 30s and Mig 29s with systems to make them compatible with AWACS (advanced US avionics/targeting/acquisition hardware). Compatibility with a foreign army's systems should not be an issue (it can always be addressed later). Cost/benefit and timing should be factors.