The F35: The Gift That Keeps on Giving

by | Apr 15, 2024

f35 moneydump

“Soon after publication ‘Superiority’ was inserted into the Engineering curriculum of MIT, to warn the graduates that the Better is often the enemy of the Good, and the Best can be the enemy of both, as it is always too late.”

– Arthur C. Clarke

Superiority by Arthur C. Clarke should be required reading for the modern technocrats.

It’s tax day so what better way to celebrate than to see how those tax dollars are spent.

The F35 has been a very expensive disaster for the American Department of Defense. Betting the farm on emerging unproven technology instead of iterative engineering is a gamble that doesn’t pay off in large scale programs.

There are, of course, major problems with the software upgrades in the F35 platform. This has plagued the program since its inception. By the time everything is 100 percent operational with this aircraft, it will be a biplane in the twenty-first century. As sexy as stealth is to the attention deficit disorder fantasists at the Pentagon, in a future near-peer and peer fight, it will be quickly obviated by technical workarounds.

There are apocryphal stories that some of the F22 aircraft in the boneyard at the 309th Aerospace Maintenance and Regeneration Group (AMARG) at Davis-Monthan AFB in Tucson, AZ are there because they missed two consecutive software patches and were bricked.

“To provide some perspective, the F-35 has been in production since 2008-9. That’s 16 years and we still don’t have full combat-capable aircraft due to software delays. Just as we’ve begun retiring LCSes without them ever having had fully functional modules installed, we may see F-35s retire without ever having been fully combat capable.

I am a big fan of the Navy Matters blog.

About Bill Buppert

Bill Buppert is the host of Chasing Ghosts: An Irregular Warfare Podcast and a contributor over time to various liberty endeavors. He served in the military for nearly a quarter century and was a combat tourist in a number of neo-imperialist shit-pits planet-wide. He can be found on twitter at @wbuppert and reached via email at

Listen to Chasing Ghosts: An Irregular Warfare Podcast

Listen to Chasing Ghosts: An Irregular Warfare Podcast

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