Biggest High Stake Action NorthwMt Arkantai TIMES, Sun., Aug. 18, 1974 FAYETTCVILLK, ARKANSAS 5A Name Of The Game In Washington. Is Military Hardware By JOHN AVHEELEK '"' WASHINGTON (AP) -- The name Â· o f : the game, is' military ;'-hardward' and it's the biggest .'_ high-stake action in town. Â· ; _ . ' ' The principal, players are the .military, , - congressmen a n d ..'defense .contractors,' with the taxpayer; a Â· Â· s o r t ' . o f off-stage "+-,banker providing, billion-dollar f.vchips each time one of the pla- , yers announces, proposes or ap- .,; proves'a cost increase for new , ,Â·, .weapon?. : ; ,-.'. Â·."; :.;. The chips are flowing for 51 ''.."..major ^'weapons 'systems now '!Â·: range from the Bl supersonic bomber and the Trident missile - launching submarine to Army Â· 'tactical missiles. Â· Â· The original price was $94 J.,.billion for the 51 weapons sys- *'terns, .some of them under development for a decade. But : this has risen to $133 billion Â· ' d a y , the General Accounting Of; fice reports. And cost will con" Uniie .to- rise,'. tay government Â·"il perls, until the. last of. the new weapons is completed in the ' r 1980s. "The patience of the public Â·Â·Â· ...has been worn thin by repea- Â· ' ted experiences with contractor Â· and Defense Department, cost Â·- forecasts ... that are unrealis ' tic," .Elmer B. Stales, the U.S. - 'comptroller general,, said of the ;Â· weapons cost explosion. "The vent to $13.3 billion and this 'ear the Air Force says that 15 billion Is the correct figure or the Bl fleet. The first proto- ype is' to be flown'this year and the planes are to be opera- ional by 1980 or 1981." The Bl story began In the early 1960s when the Air Force ecame concerned about the improving quality of the Soviet Jnion's air defenses and the fu- iire combat reliability of the mammoth B52s. The men jatliGrcd around the Pentagon inference tables a decade ago lad three major problems to consider: --What sort of technical breakthroughs could American air frame, engine and electronics systems manufacturers logically come up with over the next 10 to 15 years? --Could they design a bomber that Soviet plane, missile and electronics manufacturers could not outsmart and make totally obsolete by the time the bomber became operational? --Given increasing public resistance to the huge costs of the defense establishment, how could the program be sold without touching off a' taxpayer revolt? As. the concept of the plane evolved,'major gambles had to be taken, according to interviews with those involved in weapons planning. It had to be assumed that future aircraft design would permit construction of a fast plane carrying heavier nuclear weapons over longer ranges than in the past. The plane had to be strong enough and electronically smart enough to fly c l o s e to the ground at high speeds, the best way to elude Soviet air defenses. 'At the same-time, it was assumed that , jet engine makers, in the coming years, could increase the-power of engines , while reducing their weight. A mistake in any of this gambling would lead to higher costs because of design changes, delays and the added cost of inflation resulting from delays. Â· CONTRACTS LET By 1970, the Bl had jelled in the Pentagon's thinking, and development contracts were let in June of that year. Rockwell International Corp. is building the 380,000-pound, four-jet bom- General Electric the each in (he 30,000- ground at just under supersonic speed to avoid enemy radar. The Bl is two-thirds the size of the B52, but will carry four times the payload. fly faster and farther on less fuel and lose tougher defense problems "or the enemy, the Air Force says. The plane's primary, \vea- :ion is to be a nuclear-lipped short-range a t t a c k missile (SRAM), which can be fired 70 to 100 miles from a target, thus avoiding anti-aircraft weapons massed around major Russian cities. What would it all cost? The Pentagon's 1970 reports to the General Accounting Office, Congress' watchdog over the executive branch, said development would be $2.685 billion and production $8.5 lillion - totaling nearly $11.2 lillion. Did anyone in' Washington Â·cally believe in 1970 that Ihe Bl could be delivered at that iricc? "There is no doubt that key congressmen, the Pentagon and lelcnse contractors all work to bring in low cost estimates to get the momentum going (or .veapons," Rep. John F. Sei- acrlitig, D-Ohio, said in an interview. Once rolling, new weapons arc politically almost unstoppable, adds Seiberling, an outspoken Pentagon critic. 'THEN' DOLLARS Government experts explain that the $11.2 billion figure represented "then" dollars, or the money needed to produce Ihc plane during the years ' of planning, not d u r i n g the period of actual production in the late '70s. In latc-1970s dollars, the cost is $11 billion plus another billion, the Air Force says, because of the technical problems that have arisen, a period 'if congressional indecision, infla- ion and oilier "normal" un- 'oreseeables. A General Accounting Office expert, in an interview, said the actual cost estimate today is about $16 billion, with future cost increases probable. That would be $65 million for each plane. By comparison, a 747 jumbo jet costs about $30 million. What concerns such Bl critics as Seiberling and Sen. George McGovern, D-S.D., a World War II bomber pilot, is that even f Bl costs can be held at $16 jillion, which they doubt, the 'ull cost of the bombers will be higher because of Ihe Bl support system. They estimate $70 billion based on research Ijy their staffs. The Pentagon ;ays nonsense, but issues .no figures on the expected cost; of missiles, nuclear v;arheads, maintenance, replacements and the like. T h e Pentagon, stressing national security as a justification for cost problems, notes that a pre-World War II Congress nearly let the B17 Flying Fortress die because Ihe congressmen thought the bomber woujd cost too much to produce. The B17 became the mainstay of the U.S. bomber force in the opening years of World War 11. NASCAR Stars Try Sedan Racing WeHDUIJS (JUM eAUIUMUll. iil\. Â· Â· - Â· Â· : Â· , . . , public has become skeptical of!A three-race program; in which - Â· - - -Â· -- - - several top stock - car drivers will try their ; hands at road course racing,, opened today at Charlotte Motor Speedway. On tap today was a 300-mile event for small sedans, part of an International Motor Sports Association series. ' Big money winners Cale Yarborough, David Pearsom Buddy Baker an Bobby Isaac, from NASCAR's Grand National stock car circuit, are : entered as co-drivers in a 300-miIer Sunday for big"" bo re; machinery! Also scheduled Sunday is a 50-mile event -for open ; cockpit, open-wheel Formula Super - not o n l y ' t h e Defense Department but also of the Congress on defense issues." The Congress this month approved $22.2 billion for weapons "purchase and research in fiscal 1975. That was only .$1 " billion less than the Defense Department sought. The total proposed military budget is 85.8 billion. CASE OF STUDY The Bl supersonic inter-con. tinental bomber, now being developed for the Air Force's Strategic air Command as a replacement for the aging B52, ^..is a case study of how Â·-Â·Â·Â·in f - - the - world - did '- all - those '- billions - get - added r on. ' Four years ago, when the first !'"contracts were signed, the.Pen- ' 'tagon estimated that the cost . of a fleet of 244 Bl's wou|d be I $11.2 billion. " ; - v Last year, the cost estimate Vees, part of the International Gold Cup circuit that will wind up later this'.year.in Germany. The three races will, be Icon- tested over, a new.;2.25-mile oval-road course, just completed at Charlotte Motor 1 , Speedway. It feature's 1.5 miles of bankec oval and an infield section that rambles through the south enc of the.closed facility.. Today's .feature involved tidy ittle racing cars of the Grem- in, BMW, Pinto and Vega class.' ; It was the sixth outing in an 11-race campaign. Nick Craw who retired a week ago as di rector of the Peace Corps leads the championship points battle. Craw celebrated his withdrawal 'from politics--he stepped down on the same day that 'President. Nixon .'left, the White'HpuseW-by winning a'100 miter at Talladega. Ala. The 40 fastest qualifiers frorr Friday's rain-soaked shake downs were to start-the race. Sunday's feature is a match- up between the heavier, more powerful Corvettes of. Milt Minter and Tony DeLorenzoz Peter Gregg, Mike Keyser, against the speedy, more ma j neuverable Porsche Carreres of George Dyer and Steve Behr. 'What a fine mess you're making, bird!' New Rice Planting Method Increases Yield BULACAN, The Philippines . (AP) -- A new way of planting rice that challenges the practices ol centuries is the latest , hope for a breakthrough in thÂ« race to boost food production in Asia'ahead of the needs of its rising population. "There is no doubt that we are going to change the way rice Is grown in Asia," said the man about to oversee a major Â· test of the method called direct .seeding. He is Vernpn Ross, a Â· B-foot-2 former University of Tennessee agriculture specialist Â· and director of training at the ' International Rice Research Institute at Los Banos, the Philip.'" pjncs. , .., To make good his optimism, . Ross and other advocates ot di; reel seeding will have to overcome the entrenched practices ; of centuries of rice farmers in three to five times on land depend for ; staple. their lives on the . But the new method will in crease the farmers' yields from Â· three to five times o nland depending for its water on rain..fall instead of on irrigation, ac- Much of increased yields of new seed varieties has been concentrated on irrigated land. A major test is underway this crop year in this and other rice provinces near Manila. The government ot the Philippines 's turning over 24,000 hectares, about 60,000 acres, to direct seeding. On In ebasis o f . experiments carried out on nine scattered plots last year, Ross is wagering the rice yields will triple on the test hectarage. PROMOTES DIRECT SEEDING Like many Asian countries, the Philippines does not grow enough rice to satisfy its population, which is growing at the rate of more than 3 per cent each year. Partly because of the lag, it is promoting direct seeding more than a year ahead of Ross's schedule. Under the direct-seeding method, the Filipino farmer will plant dry seed into dry but prepared soil from mid-April, using plenty of chemical herbi- to kill than a month in specially prepared muddle paddies, transplante them when then the rains were at their height. That was about July in the Philippines. 'Ross said the rains con- rolled weeds which are a major deterrent to a high-yielding Because of the shifting pattern of rain, the farmer often juessed wrong about the right ,ime to transplant his seedlings into his fields or kept them in '.he seed bed until they were too cities ill weeds as well as fertilizer and pest killers. The technique is designed to permit his land to take advantage of . c o r d i n g to Ross. From 'some i ne increasing moisture of the iexperimenlal plots, Ross has ra i nv season starting late in extracted rice at the rate of M ay to allow him a harvest be- .more than 10 tons per hectare i j 0i . e me fjood and typhonn sea- from land .which 'previously son , an d to give him time to .yielded 1:4 tons. ' ' ' ' plant n second crop of rice or If Ross carries off the some other item, change, it will have immense; For centuries, ralnfed-lanc Impact, lie said 67 per cent of fanners have nurtured their ricÂ« land in Asia is rainfed.lseeds for three weeki to morÂ« mature to yield much. Ross transplanting usually s a i d meant the farmers' crops grew during a lime of decelerating rainfall. Ross said the technique wii: be just as applicable in raihfec parts of Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand and Bangladesh as in the Philippines. REGISTRATION Play, Learn, Nursery School FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH Educational Building Aug. 19-21 -- Â»:30-1I:(M) Â».m. Three year ctnj -- Tuesday- Thursday $12 3 month. Four year clau -- Monday-Wednu- dÂ»y-Frlday $11 t month. Registration Fee: M MONDAY TUESDAY The Bl, described by crilics s the most expensive weapons yslem in military history, is swcpl-wing aircraft upersonic speed 'capability at igh altitudes. 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