Worldview Tech Item of the Day
As I mentioned, one of the interesting advanced technologies currently under development by the military is a rocket powered glider capable of being dropped from an aircraft and the gliding at high speed for perhaps hundreds of miles to allow special forces troops to arrive at targets quickly and almost undetected. A prototype of that idea flew across the English Channel today. Jules Crittenden has some great pictures.
Over at A Host of Contributing Factors, I am involved in an ongoing debate about the nature of the two presidential candidates’ views on military spending. I believe that this kind of technology is exactly the kind of technology that Barack Obama would cut funding for because he does not see its usefulness in making the use of US Military force more precise and more lethal.
By making the use of force more precise and lethal, we thereby reduce the number of people we expose to harm’s way and reduce the potential of collateral damage. Unfortunately, such technology often comes with a hefty price tag that may not pay for itself in decades or maybe even ever.
Yet, we know that having this kind of technology always pays for itself when it is needed. We did not have the right technology in 1979, and it cost American lives and prolonged the suffering of American citizens. We did have the right technology in 2001, and the rapid collapse of the Taliban is proof of its worth.
Sure, military spending is a small part of the national security portfolio, but from my perspective, how much someone is willing to spend on the shotgun they hope they never have to use to defend their house says a lot about how that person will choose to deal with a lot of other things.