A Squad Leader’s Yearly Salary or an Hour in an F-22?
Something I didn’t know but Brandon Friedman at VoteVets did: a staff sergeant leading an infantry squad in Afghanistan makes, with combat pay, about $44,500 per year. And it costs about $42,000 *per hour *to fly an F-22, a fighter jet never used in post-9/11 combat at a time when the two wars the United States is fighting require a lot of infantry squad leaders and not a single fighter jet. This is all apropos of the vote this week on the fiscal 2010 defense authorization bill, which President Obama has threatened to veto because of all the money for the F-22 back into it as Defense Secretary Bob Gates tries to end the jet’s production line. Obama’s big ally on the effort to put the F-22 out to pasture is none other than Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), whom you may remember from the 2008 campaign, when he attacked Obama’s judgment on national security questions.