When John McCain was shot down over Hanoi in 1967, he was flying an A4 Skyhawk. That jet cost $860,000. Inflation has risen by 700% since then. So Mr. McCain's A4 cost $6.1 million in 2008 dollars. Applying a generous factor of three for technological improvements, the price for a 2008 Navy F18 fighter should be about $18 million. Instead, we are paying about $90 million for each new fighter. As a result, the Navy cannot buy sufficient numbers. This is disarmament without a treaty. The situation is worse in the Air Force. In 1983, I was in the Pentagon meeting that launched the F-22 Raptor. The plan was to buy 648 jets beginning in 1996 for $60 million each (in 1983 dollars). Now they cost $350 million apiece and the Obama budget caps the program at 187 jets. At least they are safe from cyberattack since no one in China knows how to program the '83 vintage IBM software that runs them. Wasteful Defense Spending Is a Clear and Present Danger - WSJ.com Some will argue among them Sarah Palin that cutting Defense Spending during wartime is complete nonsense. However, given the shape of our economy one must consider that from a national security standpoint spending over a Trillion Dollars a year for Defense is somewhat hard to justify when the current system of DoD purchasing is a complete mess. One positive step to reforming this would be to reform contracting to songle souce fixed cost contracts that are time limted. The end result of this would be savings of countless billions of dollars with more hardware to the warfighter that is needed. Take for example the C-17, for years the Air Force has told congress that they no longer need them and yet, we keep on buying them despite the Air Force not asking for them. The same goes for the Alternate Engine for the F-35 and countless numbers of programs in the Defense Department. This is not a matter of taking from the Warfighter , it is a matter of getting the best systems to soldier, sailor , marine and airman to do the job without contractors and the DoD purchasing system costing American taxpayers and national security. The system is so set in it takes courage to change it, but in times where it need to be reformed , this is a good place to start when addressing both the needs of the US Military and the economy.