Thursday, February 16, 2012

BRAC & Beemer-Beaters

More on BRAC... Panetta & Friends testified before the Senate Armed Services Committee Tuesday, yesterday they took the small horse and canine to the House:
House Lawmakers: More BRAC Just Too Costly: Defense Secretary Leon Panetta on Wednesday once again urged Congress to support two more rounds of BRAC during his second trip to Capitol Hill in two days to discuss the Pentagon's Fiscal 2013 budget request. Once again, House lawmakers didn't bite, just as their Senate counterparts were lukewarm to the idea on the previous day. The controversial topic was raised 31 times during Wednesday's House Armed Services Committee hearing. "There's obviously no wild enthusiasm in the Congress for additional BRAC rounds," said Rep. Roscoe Bartlett (R-Md.). He added, "Every one of those facilities is in somebody's district and it might be yours that gets gored. And secondly, we really don't save any money in the short term because of the cleanup." Panetta said he realizes that "BRAC costs a hell of a lot of money," but said it's "the only effective way to try to achieve needed infrastructure savings" necessary "in the long run." BRAC 2005 is estimated to have cost the Defense Department some $39 billion to execute, and lawmakers bemoaned the fact that no savings will come from it before 2018, citing the Government Accountability Office. The Pentagon is expected to present its BRAC proposal to Congress next month, said Rep. Joe Courtney (D-Conn.). (Panetta's prepared statement) (Dempsey's written testimony)
—Amy McCullough
In other words... more of the same (from the Usual USAF Source).


I'm still a fool for car pr0n... and here's my latest automotive lust object:

Long-time Gentle Readers may remember me bein' on about the Caddy CTS for the last couple o' years, so much so that I rented one for three or four days while The Green Hornet was getting her butt lifted.  I also got a quote on a CTS and subscribed to Caddy's newsletter, which is the source of the photo and other details on the new ATS.  Cadillac claims the BMW 3-Series is the benchmark for the ATS and goes to some length in their pre-production marketing to compare the two platforms.  I owned a 320i back in Former Happy Days and it was one of the better cars I've ever driven.  I kept that thang for well over ten years; it was my personal automotive longevity record holder until last October, when TGH had her 11th birthday.  I like what I see of the ATS so far and wonder if Caddy really is building a Beemer-Beater.  If so... I might could see myself in one.

Here we go again.


  1. Before he retired (was bought out?), my brother-in-law worked in some capacity for engine design, which is almost irrelevant to my comment.
    The company provided him with an STS to drive, even to the point of paying for the fuel, as long as he kept meticulous records. They even replaced the vehicles every two years and provided loaners when they were testing his car. He raved about the Caddy.
    He buys Chevys

  2. I'm not following how fiscal solvency in the "long term" is part of SECDEF's job. Nice to see someone in Washington worried about it, I guess...but if, in the short term, there isn't even any savings, I'd like to see Panetta explain how it's even on his radar.

  3. Well, red is my color, so that Caddy looks good to long as you get the red one. Never actually driven a Caddy though. It's always fun to have something to lust for...a new car is safer pron than some other choices. ;-)

    What the heck is up with your WV? Now I have to type 2 words?!

  4. I will be in the market for a new car next year and I have to say that the Caddy CTS is one that I'm keeping my eyes on. I won't buy brand-new, but perhaps 2-3 years old. I am also still in love with my Acura TL and might just trade it in for another one.

    But right now the Caddy edges the Acura just a bit.

    However what edges everything is the Mustang Convertible. After years of saying no - The Oracle might be caving a bit. Of course the one we rented for a week in Florida last month may have helped my cause.

    I'm sneaky like that.

  5. I'm sure Caddy's are great, but I love my Toyota. I'm a bit upset with my Subaru right now. Maybe I'll trade it for a Beemer - yeah right.

  6. Skip: I used to have a friend in Dee-troit who was a senior powertrain engineer for Cadillac. He was in what GM calls the Product Evaluation Program (PEP) and got a new Caddy every six months or so. But the really interesting stuff were the mules he used to bring by... test cars with technology Cadillac was working on but not yet public. His visits were always prefaced with the ultimate stupid question: "Hey... wanna go for a ride?" Is a bear Catholic?

    Morgan: Panetta's only brief, in my understanding, is to present the administration with DoD's funding request and then execute the budget he's given. There's a whole wide world o' stuff in between those two end points, of course, part and parcel o' which is advocating for DoD programs before Congress.

    Red: I'd never own a red car, mainly coz I've never seen an old red car with good paint. They ALL seem to fade with time and I'm a "buy and hold" kinda guy. As to your other point... I'm gonna extrapolate and say cars are MUCH cheaper than wimmen. ;-)

    Kris: The CTS might be a better choice than the Mustang, given where you live. Mustangs are notoriously bad in snow... but a 'Stang convertible would be kick-ass in Spring, summer, and (early) Fall.

    Lou: Beemers are great cars but maintenance can be pretty expensive unless you know a great third-party mechanic. My SN2 has had a lot o' Subarus and he loves the thangs.

  7. Buck - I hear ya on the Mustang in the snow deal and it is very true. However our other vehicle is a Jeep Grand Cherokee with the magical 4WD. Making the 'Stang argument a little less potent.

    And kick ass at every other time of the year indeed. I had a 1973 Cougar Convertible when I was in high school and that was one HAWT machine.

  8. Boy Panetta and Obama guys really got a h--- on for this BRAC deal. I'm beginning to think with this and their proposed nuke cut backs it ain't the long term savings they're wanting but the long term destruction of our military capability.

    Get that dang Caddy, Buck. It's one sweet looking car. Are you thinking 4 door or that new coupe?

  9. Kris: The DO it... in re: the Mustang.

    Dan: That new ATS only comes with four doors at the moment. The CTS comes in four-door and coupe versions, but I found out the CTS was just a lil too rich for my blood and budget last year.


Just be polite... that's all I ask.