Skip to comments.Pentagon nominee Griffin: Procurement a ‘mess,’ U.S. losing edge in aviation, space
Posted on 10/29/2017 6:04:26 AM PDT by Elderberry
If confirmed by the Senate, Griffin could become a key voice in advancing U.S. technology in areas where the United States has long dominated such as aviation and space and is now being challenged.
WASHINGTON President Trump tapped former NASA Administrator Michael Griffin for a top Pentagon job, giving him a key role in shaping investments in defense and aerospace technologies at a time when other nations are gaining ground on the United States.
Griffins nomination to be principal deputy undersecretary of defense for acquisition, technology and logistics had been anticipated for weeks, and the White House made it official Friday.
Recent public comments by Griffin suggest that, if confirmed by the Senate, he would become a key voice in advancing U.S. technology in areas where the United States has long dominated such as aviation and space and is now being challenged.
During an appearance Oct. 25 and 26 at the American Astronautical Societys Von Braun Symposium in Huntsville, Alabama, Griffin declined to comment about his Pentagon nomination but offered some clues about his priorities.
We need to think again, as we have really not since the 1980s, about our approach to acquisition, Griffin said Oct. 25 during a panel discussion on space policy. Government acquisition across the board not restricted to space is a mess, he said. We take far longer to buy things that we need on behalf of the taxpayers, and we spend more money trying to prevent a mistake than the cost of the mistake. Were far out of balance on checks and balances in terms of government acquisition.
(Excerpt) Read more at spacenews.com ...
Because everything is being imported from China.
And everyone, in both parties, is 100% on board with the mess.
Over thirty years in the defense industry I read many contracts from front to back. They are stuffed with requirements dictated by Congress that do nothing for the hardware except make it more expensive. Requirements to set aside significant parts for generally unqualified small businesses, requirements not to use cadmium or chromium or even forbidding using products from companies that use those materials in products you aren’t buying(FCS), requirements for diversity training...the list goes on and on. I made estimates, which was my job, that up to half the cost of any contract I dealt with was for items that did not go into the hardware or software. On FCS, I estimated that for every dollar the government spent only about twenty cents went into actual end product. In general, the larger and more important the program the worse the waste.
Trump is the only one who spoke out against this globalist mess.
Wow! Winning. I know Griffin. This is an excellent choice. One of Griffins early actions as NASA director was to fire the heads of the NASA centers when they decided that they could operate independently, each pursuing his own agenda, that they need not support a coherent mission, and that Congress would protect them. Well, Congress didnt, couldnt and actually did not care when he did.
It was an obvious necessary reform that just took the guts to do it.
I like what Im hearing.
Old book thats still applicable today, written by some Cold Warriors. It used to be a textbook at all three service academies and was used at the war colleges. Full text online.
THE STRATEGY OF TECHNOLOGY
just how much say does a “principal deputy undersecretary” of X have in the scheme of things and the Pentagon?
Since it is a confirmed position, and since it is Mike Griffin, I am guessing he will have.a lot of influence - or he will quit. Griffin is not a shrinking violet snowflake swamp-dweller. He knows us, but he is not one of us.
“we spend more money trying to prevent a mistake than the cost of the mistake”
Tranlation: Over engineered - with “trying to prevent mistakes” and so many bells and whistles (often by Congressional demands in favor contractors in their district), and collectively it makes systems more vulnerable to minor problems leading to major failures due to the highly sophisticated integration of systems. The more complex does not spell safer or “better”, it spells tons of extras to keep the complexity working in sync - without fail.
My dad was a purchasing officer at JPA in Tokyo.
Back then, the focus was on rebuilding Japanese industry and protecting SK.
I think the Korean conflict helped Japan recover from the war more than anything else we did.
“I think the Korean conflict helped Japan recover from the war more than anything else we did.”
What helped even more was the US brow-beating industry to give away their technology, like transistors, for free.
This was before transistors became common. 1951-1961.
Guessing? The position has some description about decisions and relevance - just what does the position entail? Is it a position, which from the description, sounds more like a minor voice in the process. Perhaps he just wants to get a pay raise and all the rest is speculation and wishful thinking.
Deputy undersecretary is pretty far down the food chain to have any real power. Why wasn’t he appointed further up the chain like Secretary or Deputy to the Secretary?
There are many things wrong with our procurement system for weapon systems.
The F-35 is a classic example of politics intruding into a design, and making it a Trillion dollar lemon.
We write our specfications with so many requirements that it takes Billions and years to adhere to them.
Also, this doesn't help. Every contract has to have some sort of women and minority pay off in the shake down.
Thank you. Thinking strategically about the government updates to fuel standards and other restrictions put on government vendors and contractors shows that the anti-American rot is deep as well as very old.
A lot of that stuff is not so much anti-American as good old-fashioned pork barrel politics. Which has been around since forever.
Read the article. The position will morph to Undersecretary for Research and Engineering under the already approved reorganization of ATL.
Don’t forget all mafias that hat need to be pad off to get a system a material release. Some of them only last 3 years. I have seen systems start the process only to have some of the statements expire before the final ones are finished. IA, Safety, ATO, suitability, sustainability, cyber, manufacturability, Safety of flight, gps vulnerabilit, enviromental impact, maintanability ..... no exemptions a system must meet all those and more. Each has a multiple hundred page requirement list. The all point to the others so it’s a web of pay my organization. Each will find something you must fix which causes you to go back to each with a change notification. 40% is wasted on this shit.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.