Lockheed to Furlough 3,000 Workers amid Shutdown

Lockheed to Furlough 3,000 Workers amid Shutdown

Lockheed Martin Corp., the world’s largest defense contractor, says at least 3,000 employees will temporarily stop working because of the federal government shutdown.

Lockheed joins a growing number of defense contractors impacted by the shutdown, now in its fourth day after lawmakers were unable to pass a budget by Oct. 1, the start of the government’s fiscal year. BAE Systems Plc, based in London, has said the shutdown may affect as much as 15 percent of its U.S. workforce, or about 5,250 employees.

Private-sector employees are unable to work because the government facility where they perform their job is closed, or their work requires a government inspection that can’t be completed, or contracts have received a stop-work order, according to the Lockheed statement.

“I’m disappointed that we must take these actions and we continue to encourage our lawmakers to come together to pass a funding bill that will end this shutdown,” Chief Executive Officer Marillyn Hewson said in the statement. “We hope that Congress and the Administration are able to resolve this situation as soon as possible.”

The Bethesda, Md.-based company said the number of workers forced to take mandatory leaves of absence, known as furloughs, beginning Oct. 7 will increase the longer the government remains closed. Employees are being directed to use available vacation time so they can continue to receive their pay and benefits, the company said.

Lockheed is the prime manufacturer for numerous weapons systems, including the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter — the Pentagon’s most expensive acquisition program.

Some 800,000 federal workers are being forced to take unpaid leave, including about 400,000 civilians at the Defense Department. These workers, whose jobs have been deemed “non-essential,” aren’t necessarily guaranteed back pay should Congress and the White House agree on a budget or plan to temporarily fund the government.

That’s in addition to six furlough days most Pentagon civilians were required to take in the latter half of last year, due to automatic budget cuts known as sequestration. The furloughs are hurting morale throughout the workforce and the Pentagon’s ability to carry out routine administrative functions, such as overseeing contracts, officials have said.

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Bummer for those folks :-( Too bad the executives aren’t sending themselves home too!

Too bad all that talent is being wasted building the wrong aircraft.

Well that’s a real bummer, that only leaves 567,849 LM employees still working on the F-35 plus the 5,673 software programmers in India and the 3,456 hackers in China. I frankly don’t see how LM can get anything done with the F-35 now. It’s going to be delayed another 10 years and 4 Billion dollars. See what that lousy sea-qwest-er thing does. We should all call our Con-grass-men and tell them to vote LM another 7 Billion right now! ;-P

Management is apparently essential…they will be flying immediately on the company jets to DC to lobby hard.

/cue Ride of the Valkyries

The lines of code must keep coming! We’ll never make 20 million if we have to stop!

it’s a lot of work for the Chinese hackers to keep up with for sure ;-P

I feel sure these employees will be much happier once they get jobs that allow them to actually contribute to society. Companies like Lockheed screw us twice. They screw us by causing every product to cost one to three orders of magnitude more than they should, and then screw us again by taking our best and brightest minds and enslaving them to a work environment that forces them to do nothing but busy work their entire careers.

Jobs that actually contribute to society? Maybe you need to get off your high horse. They do more than most.

Sure, Willie, what would I know just having been there and done that? I’m sure you know better. That’s why 3 decades to develop an new fighter airplane seems reasonable to you. Do you have any idea how much f’ing around it takes to drag out the development of a small fighter airplane to 3 decades? I suppose you would.

That’s the complete opposite. It’s far easier to make a project late and over budget than to deliver the merchandise on time and on budget; the problem is that they don’t pay for it so they don’t really take much risk.

You can take any engineering project through the history and make it lasting forever if you want, just add more and more stuff. Lets say that the Egyptians wanted a pyramid as high as the stratosphere. It would had fallen many times as they had to restart the project on top of the ruins. An easy infinite cycle of an unrealistic expectations that will exhaust all the resources of a country that was at the time among the most powerful. The problem start when you look at those pyramid and you tell yourself: “man, that’s look impossible to do yet it has been done long before me” and start applying the observation to <put a project you have in mind>.

This shit is really going to hurt the job fair coming up in 4 days. My husbands skills are to work with these types of companies. We cant file for a VA loan, we cant file for VA benefits and now it’s affecting the opportunity for finding work.

Thanks so much for your opinion of my life’s work. It means so much to me. You are absolutely right. It was a waste of 40 years. I won’t make the mistake of thinking it was important. I’m done.

“Do you have any idea how much f’ing around it takes to drag out the development of a small fighter airplane to 3 decades? I suppose you would. ”

Yeah I do. What do you want to learn?

The first step is admitting you have a problem… But what the hell, if you were in the biz 40 years you had 10–20 where you could contribute. Those who really got suckered joined in the ‘90s.

Been there and done that. Keep trying to find ways to get things done that management hasn’t crushed into dust yet.

Yeah, that’s why the F-22 took 3 decades to design, because it kept getting better and better. What a laugh.

The rule of thumb is that after 7 years an engineer that has worked for a contractor is worthless in the real world.

Whenever we see anyone with 40 years experience working as a contractor we highly recommend them to our competitors.

If you had to rank the list of threats to national security Lockheed would be top of the list.

All great empires are first destroyed from within. Our national debt is a problem. If the US government were forced into bankrutcy, no one would lend us the 40% of our budget not paid for with taxes. 40% of the government would go away. Then, we’d be forced to live within our means. That means $2.7 trillion in taxes (about 30% of which is Social Security and Medicare payroll taxes) is all we’d live off. Paying off our $16.7 trillion in national debt would consume all of that for the next 10 YEARS! That would leave NO money for ANY federal government program, including NO national defense. THAT’S how bad the problem is. So, want to mess around paying for overpriced and under-performing weapons used to fight someone else’s religious civil wars?

But first interest rates would soar to 20% and you would pay 50.-USD for a loaf of bread because the government is printing money and the dow would be down to 950 and you and your family would be chased by roaming gangs because your bankrupt city government had to fire its entire police force and unemployment would be 30% and there would be only empty supermarkets.

How the hell do you conclude the F-22 took 3 decades to design?

Who is this “we” you speak of constantly?

Yeah I’m sure a guy building random widgets for grills is going to feel a lot better about his job than working for Lockheed regardless of the money involved. /sarcasm

Lockheed got the contract for the JSF in 2001. In December 2006 the first pre-production F-35A flew. The software and testing is what is taking forever to manage.

Uh, because I can count. Because I was there. Because I’m not some internet expert.

Fortunately 80% of the people the big aerospace companies hire out of school are gone within 2 years. Fortunately for them, at least. There are good people who stay in aerospace a long time. The companies don’t like them, but they are a necessary evil since most weapons have to work for at least a limited production run. Once the defense contractors perfect their methods for making money purely off of development without ever having to make a single weapon, they will get rid of everyone with any technical knowledge.

Outsourcing is hurting employment in defense a lot more than the government shut down. Sequestration cut defense funding levels back to those of 2007. In 2007 the defense sector employed some 30 to 40 thousand more people than it does now. Obviously if funding increased and employment decreased that work had to go somewhere.

True, but they all contribute, and don’t forget that the defense contractors control a huge amount of money that they leverage to create the kind of lobbying effort in Washington DC that is second to none. Look at this site. We talk about things like the inherit conflict of interest that exists in providing profit on development day after day, but not once has any author taken up that cause. They are terrified of what might happen to them if they did. The same is true of organizations who are supposedly all about government reform like POGO. Even when they understand the issue, they are prevented from addressing it and fired if they do.

Everyone has seem to forgotten that all those people out of work are not paying Federal Income, Social Security and Medicare taxes. That means less taxes coming into the government to Fund Welfare, Obama-Non-care and all those other liberal DemocRATS programs to make people more dependent on the government to live and we may default on the National Debt due to less taxes coming in.

Don’t you just love Obama and his DemocRATS party, but remember they still get paid

The sad thing is that we could, with some reasonable spending controls, grow our way out of debt if the federal government would do its job and go back to levying reasonable tariffs on foreign goods. It would bring back our manufacturing base and we would export more because we would have goods to export. It’s like the problems with defense. We once had a great system for developing new, high tech weapons, and then we started paying companies a profit on development and it all went to hell because suddenly a company could make more by f’ing up than it did by selling good weapons at a good price. The fix is easy, trivial almost. Getting people to realize that when you’re going up against the best propaganda minds corporate money can buy — pretty damn slim.

Gov. DoD workers that get furloughed will get payed. Essentially it will be a paid vacation. Industry wokers will not. That tells you a lot.

For any college grad’s looking to enter the workforce — you should stronly consider working for the DoD rather than industry. You will be better compensated, have better employment stability and work fewer hours. On the down side, you may have to work with a bunch a folks who never really do much or have much talent.

Cut it out, you bitter old man. Can you do anything but insult hard working people ?

It went into sunk costs. We are doing less and paying less for it.

Raise tariffs. Another really stupid idea that hurts the economy. And the usual endless tripe about development phase outsourcing.

This is the larger problem in my eyes. I chose to be a contractor because the potential income was higher, but with threats like this coming down the pipeline I find myself wondering if it would have been wiser for me to stay on the government side. There’s a sizeable workforce that falls between the crack in this situation. A good friend of mine is a contractor that supports the Department of the Interior and has been forced into unpaid leave because his DOI offices have been closed. What a cruddy situation for those folks.

Well Dfens, my friend, if anything was drug out for 3 decades I am sure that it was a TEAM effort. That TEAM includes Government Oversight. Seems to me that if the contractor was “tail draggin’” the old COTR or COR should be able to put a stop to it right away. I have seen your posts to numerous other BUZZ articles and they all have the same theme. The Gosh Darn (sic) contractors are fleecing the government and ultimately the taxpayer for the shoddy, overpriced, and consistently late work that is being done. That, my friend, is a Bandwagon that has been paraded up and down Pennsylvania Ave. for many years. Obviously by the number of posts that you have penned about the problem your thoughts are not being heard or could it be that they are being ignored? I would choose the latter rather than the former. There are 2 sides to every coin and the government is not without blame in the endeavors that you so vehemently blame on those Gosh Darn (sic) contractors. Find a new rant please, you have worn this one out.

Clearly Reagan was right…exterminate Medicare, exterminate Social Security! By giving the elderly less, we will give them more!

Clearly we must rise against the geriatric masters that threaten to strangle America with their power chairs, catheters and chronic care. Then use the money to build aircraft carriers.

The history of the ATF program is well documented. Even if you start from when the first ATF concept studies were done in the early 1980s to the F-22A achieving IOC in 2005 you don’t get 30 years.

Right, I’m sure they told you everything on the internet.

Yeah, it’s just a rant to notice that a defense contractor has a profit incentive to drag out development and jack up costs. That doesn’t mean the DoD side doesn’t get anything from dragging out development as well. If the choice is sitting in a hole in Afghanistan or a nice air conditioned office at Wright Patterson, the choice is obvious, and promotions come easily with no bullets headed your way. Plus there are the obvious revolving door benefits too. My point isn’t too look at the obvious conflicts of interest and blame someone. My point is to look at the current reality, see the problems for what they are, and fix them. Unless you’re an Air Force general waiting for his turn at the trough, Bob Stevens, or a member of the PLA, your best interest is served by that approach as well.

A profit incentive to f up = outsourcing? Your usual brilliance shines through.

If only I had know the “real solution” is contained in this weeks Democrat talking points. I feel so much better.

Yeah, work for the DoD. What a cush job that is, which explains why the suicide rate is so high.

Though the suicide problems were in the enlisted (though I posit nobody cares about DoD civilians, and nobody is tracking those numbers)

Let’s devalue our currency so American goods “cost less”.

Once we force everyone onto health insurance exchanges that aren’t subsidized by taxpayers or companies we can offer a indebted workforce to any overseas megacorporation to build things here.

Speaking of the ATF

“The ATF’s increasing weight and cost drove out some features during development. A dedicated infra-red search and track (IRST) system was downgraded from multi-color to single color and then deleted, the side-looking radars were deleted”

Wow, this sounds familiar. Proto-DAS, anyone?

Where the hell are you supposed to go as an aerospace engineer if not the “big aerospace companies”? Build rockets in your back yard like Goddard? Starbucks?

(Of course, as a scientist there aren’t many “cushy” jobs anymore, which is why the attrition rate will exceed the input rate of fresh meat, err, undergrads, grad students and fresh PhD’s).

Actually, I think it does include DoD civilians. Contract oversight is a suck ass job. Lots of travel. Not great pay. They take all the blame for the program’s problems, but have no power at all to actually fix things. It is nothing more than an exercise in futility. Plus those who actually do manage to shine a light on program problems are openly attacked by contractor program management, and even by company executives. I’ve seen it happen. I have literally seen high level management put names of procurement officials on PowerPoint charts identifying them by name as major program problems when all these people were really dong is their jobs. No thanks, I’ll never take that job.

Oh, and then they get identified in every defense contractor press release as co-conspirators working toward the destruction of America’s weapons arsenal. It’s true, too. The defense contractors might make more by f’ing up and dragging out programs, but it is actually the government procurement people who make this happen, even though such activity provides no visible benefits to them at all. But that’s not a conspiracy theory. If it were, the defense contractors would have told us it is.

Not so sure. Digging into the bureaucracy, and I find DODser, which tracks servicemembers http://​t2health​.org/​s​i​t​e​s​/​d​e​f​a​u​l​t​/​f​i​l​e​s​/​d​o​d​s​e​r​/Do

But nothing that tracks OSD civilians…yet.
http://​www​.dodig​.mil/​H​O​T​L​I​N​E​/​f​a​q​.​h​tml //nothing on non-service members here http://​www​.suicideoutreach​.org/

Looking beyond National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, which is probably socialism.

Want book sources? It’s well documented history now. An earlier ATF program existed in the early 1970s which was looking at a new strike aircraft to complement the F-15, A-10, and potentially replace the F-111. Yet priorities changed, the LWF (F-16) was introduced and was developed into a potent multi-role fighter. The ETF program for a longer-ranged strike fighter led to a fly-off between the F-15E and F-16XL with the F-15E declared the winner. ATF was born again with new requirements like stealth.

Please enlighten me to the secret history of the F-22 that apparently ONLY YOU are informed of.

The articles I read preceded the last round of wars and talked about high rates of suicides specifically at Wright Patterson where the center of Air Force procurement is. The AF hotlines specify they are for both civilians and uniformed military. Seriously, with the family disruption of all the travel and the high job frustration levels working in military procurement is a really bad employment option for anyone who is not a sociopath.

I don’t understand why you are constantly putting all of the blame on the contractor. Of course they are partly to blame but do you think the government and DoD has no part in this? They purposely stretched out the EMD phase of the F-22 program which caused all sorts of problems. They kept cutting the number they planned to buy as well, and at one point they decided to add an air-to-ground attack capability to the requirements.

The AIRST planned for the F-22 was primarily for use against aerial targets, similar to earlier systems deployed on the F-14, F-106, and some variants of the F-4 Phantom II. This of course fit the aircraft’s primary role of being an air-superiority fighter. EOTS on the F-35 is much more of a multi-role system with all of the capabilities of a modern targeting pod used to engage stuff on the ground.

The F-22 does have a missile-launch warning capability provided by the AN/AAR-56 which could perhaps be considered “proto-DAS”, yet both systems are made by different companies.

Isn’t it about time that the congress was decimated as per the original meaning of the word?
Take 10% at random and put them to the sword — it will concentrate the minds of the 90%.
Oh, and by the way, stop paying the bastards — perhaps they should all be up on treason charges?
The world looks on in amazement at the criminal behaviour of your lawmakers and their corrupt practises.

I suppose you could go to SpaceX or Scaled Composites. The down side is, these companies are known more for their low costs than innovation. Innovation used to be pumped by government scientists spending tax dollars on wild new ideas, because only the government could afford to take such risks. Now they outsource all of their research to defense contractors whose only goal is to milk the research contract for as long as possible to make as much money as possible.

…that’s not a lot of career options. Even liberal arts majors would have more career options. :|

I suppose this just proves my parents right, that chemical engineers have it good, followed by electrical engineers and mechanical engineers.

The resignations before the announced decimation would be astounding!


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