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Budget Cuts Threaten to Ground Blue Angels Before Seafair

If Congress fails to pass a defense budget by March 1, the U.S. Navy may be forced to eliminate the popular traveling air show.

Budget gridlock in Congress could threaten this year's Seafair performance of the Blue Angels and potentially eliminate the entire U.S. Navy air show.

According to U.S. News & World Report, the upcoming sequestration deadline means the U.S. Navy could eliminate the popular air show program if Congress fails to reach consensus on a defense budget by March 1.

KIRO TV reports the Navy has confirmed the move would result in the cancelation of this summer's Seafair performance, scheduled for Aug. 2-4. But Seafair President Beth Knox said she is not in panic mode—yet.

"As we've seen in recent history, many adjustments are made prior to finalizing the budget, so until this occurs, it would be inappropriate to speculate potential cuts or the degree to which they happen," Knox told KIRO. "The Blue Angels are confirmed to fly at Seafair in 2013 and we remain confident the Seattle region will get to enjoy them this summer as they have for over 40 years.” 

Would you miss the Blue Angels? Tell us in the comments section.

Ron Wambolt February 01, 2013 at 04:38 AM
This is what voting for Obama can bring. Not only no Blue Angels, but a greatly weakened military.
Pauline February 01, 2013 at 09:41 PM
OK, so let me get this straight: for the Obama-haters, it's all about cutting the deficit. But if something they ENJOY gets cut, then OMG, it's all Obama's fault. So cut Medicaid, cut funding for the arts, cut the education department, transportation department, regulatory agencies, but if my Blue Angels get taken away, boo hoo hoo. Pat Kenmir (comment below) nailed it: in reality this is purely a PR tactic by the Navy to rile people up.
Caitlin Moran February 01, 2013 at 09:55 PM
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BVorontsov February 02, 2013 at 01:42 AM
Who needs the Blue Angels. I think the Communist Chinese have a flight demonstration team that would be most welcome in Seattle.
Edward A. February 02, 2013 at 10:07 AM
Ron, even if we halved military spending, it would dwarf the rest of the world's spending. We spend more on the military than the next 15 countries combined. I say, cut this silly blue angels stuff. If we can't afford health insurance for our working poor, we can't afford dazzling crowds at Seafair.
BVorontsov February 02, 2013 at 02:10 PM
Low informational comments about halving the military is very telling. Those who don't see the value in a a strong, formidable US military either slept through their history classes or have contempt for America and want to see it destroyed. And as of late, the enemy within is winning.
Edward A. February 02, 2013 at 06:08 PM
No, having such a weak argument that you are forced to resort to thinly-veiled ad hominem (I either hate America, or don't know my history -- both quite false) is very telling. I am going to break it down. The United States, in 2011, was responsible for 41% of the entire worlds's military spending. We spend as much on the military every year as the next 15 countries combined. Only two of those countries (Russia and China) could be considered enemies. I made you a table (based on data from SIPRI) to show you this: http://i.imgur.com/W74w8U0.png If we cut that figure of $711,000,000,000 in half, we would still be spending 1.65 times as much as our two "enemies," and combined with the rest of our allies in this list, 3.97 times as much as our "enemies" (Russia and China). At 4.7% of the entire economic output of the country, I think it is fair to ask whether we can afford this. So, how formidible do we have to be? Finally, for those who DID sleep through history class, I'd direct them to President Eisenhower's farewell address: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CWiIYW_fBfY Remember while watching, Eisenhower was a Republican, clearly loved this country, and was a WWII military hero.
dexterjibs February 03, 2013 at 05:14 AM
To answer the quastion, I would not miss the Blue Angels. However, I never went to watch them anyway cuz I am too busy. On a side note; Are there equal cuts to social programs so we don't have 45% of the population on food stamps? Are tehre equal cuts to adminstrative costs of running Washington DC?
BVorontsov February 03, 2013 at 06:50 AM
Eduardo no need to be so defensive. And in case you haven't noticed, the world is a dangerous place.
Edward A. February 03, 2013 at 06:59 AM
45% of the population isn't on food stamps. There, I fixed that for you. Now are you happy? :) Yes, I realize you probably meant 45,000,000 people, not 45%, but it's hard to keep your facts straight sometimes. In all seriousness, did you realize many of those people have jobs? Source: http://thesocietypages.org/socimages/2012/09/03/food-stamps-public-policy-and-the-working-poor/. Those jobs don't pay enough for people to live on, yet the Republicans *always* oppose increases to the minimum wage, because they worry about the effect it will have on businesses. In other words, the government is subsidizing businesses by allowing them to keep wages low, and paying the "working poor" the difference with food stamps. If you want to decrease food stamp usage, increase the minimum wage, which has failed to keep pace with inflation. Source: http://www.raisetheminimumwage.com/facts/entry/amount-with-inflation/ Finally, as a former military contractor, I can tell you first-hand that if you want to see REAL waste of taxpayer dollars, look at military spending. Talk about fraud and corruption!
Edward A. February 03, 2013 at 08:30 AM
It's an amusing pun to label me defensive when I am pointing out that my country spends more "defending itself" than almost the entire rest of the world combined. Was it intentional? And, you are right -- the world is a dangerous place indeed. Did you know that we've killed hundreds of children in Pakistan *alone,* just through drone strikes? I'd rather spend my tax dollars feeding, clothing and educating people (you know, that old "hearts and minds" stuff) than killing them. I am pretty sure Jesus would agree.
Lily Lavish March 03, 2013 at 10:04 AM
There are many reasons to be unhappy with our government and grounding the Blues will just be another! Even if they save money by cutting the defense budget they will just misappropriate our taxpayer's dollars in a much less enjoyable way! So I say bring on the Blues! We may as well get some bang for our buck instead of lining another shyster's pockets!!!!
Rouchard Duprie March 03, 2013 at 04:10 PM
L Squared, I like how you think.
R Jaffe March 03, 2013 at 04:16 PM
As a one of the dwindling lifers in the region, I would be sorry to see the Blues disappear as they represent part of the heritage and culture of this region for many of us. Yet, there are so many major defense projects that are unwanted by the Pentagon but which represent public spending insisted upon by corrupt politicians at the expense of tax payers. The Navy did not want the continuation of the contract for more Zumwalt class destroyers (DDG-1000) but they got a third ship anyway. Both Democrats and Republicans were jointly responsible for that one, an example of when both side can work together across the aisle against the best interests of the tax payer. (Sort of like our City Council here) The Air Force never wanted the new refueling tanker or a continuation of the problem ridden F-22. The Army did not want the continuation of the upgrade program for the M-1 Abrams. The bipartisan supported list of military spending on programs not wanted by the Pentagon goes on and on. The military budget could be cut by 20% without harming our military's capability, but it won't happen that way. Eliminating what amounts to military earmark spending is no more likely to happen then eliminating corporate entitlements that allow the biggest corporations to pay no taxes or cutting upper income entitlements such as low taxes on unearned income and nearly unlimited deductions on mortgage interest.
dexterjibs March 03, 2013 at 11:20 PM
I wonder how our parents and grandparents survived without all these silly government programs that empty headed liberals insist we need to pay for?
Joe M March 04, 2013 at 01:46 AM
You know liberals who are insisting we need to pay for the Blue Angels?
John Snow March 04, 2013 at 02:04 AM
You're right, they did survive. But not as long as they do now, and in much more poverty. And they lived in households with three and four generations under one crowded roof, because there was no way to finance what we consider dignified living.
John Snow March 04, 2013 at 02:07 AM
Edward A., don't forget to mention that Walmart, the biggest company in the world, relies on gullible taxpayers to provide health care for their employees, because as smart business people, the top brass at Walmart know how to squeeze the system to get the most for the stockholders, and the least for their employees.
John Snow March 04, 2013 at 02:14 AM
Ron, since 1990 our defense spending has tripled. Tripled. But you don't feel safer, do you? You just said our military is not just weakened, but greatly weakened. Clearly, money has not been the answer, so why are you complaining about cuts to a tiny public relations program? The Blue Angels serve no military purpose, flying outmoded non-combat aircraft in an attempt to attract new recruits.
Joseph March 04, 2013 at 04:48 AM
Question...Why are we giving the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt 250 million dollars if we are cutting back programs to our own citizens here?...I don't get it... Egyptians had more freedom before the Muslim B'hood took over that country... "U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on Sunday rewarded Egypt for President Mohammed Morsi's pledges of political and economic reforms by releasing $250 million in American aid to support the country's "future as a democracy."
Rouchard Duprie March 04, 2013 at 04:58 AM
That's quite astounding. Do you feel the same way about the Constitution and the Bill of Rights? I hope someone doesn't say the same thing about dated architects.
dexterjibs March 04, 2013 at 05:46 AM
John Snow, that is some pretty lame argumentation. I will give you that people live longer, but that has more to do with medical advances and healthier choices than governmetn taxing and spending. What is really lame is the poverty argument. There has always been people living in poverty and will always be people living in poverty. Ever since the feckless war on poverty was started, the percentages of poverty have not changed. And multiple generations living under one roof? Have you seen the living arrangements of many Mexican families? Or are you talking about the college graduates of today that are forced to move back home. And these people get a lot of money from government programs. I recall people leaving home when they graduated high school and never coming back. We could go back to the spending levels of Bill CLinton and we would still survive.
Edward A. March 04, 2013 at 06:35 AM
Human rights have nothing to do with aid to Egypt. If they had, we would have stopped giving it to them long ago. If you don't like it, look at real reasons: their proximity to Israel, and the Suez Canal. Here's a simple primer: http://www.propublica.org/blog/item/f.a.q.-on-u.s.-aid-to-egypt-where-does-the-money-go-who-decides-how-spent
Harborite March 04, 2013 at 02:46 PM
The Blue Angels are fun to watch, but definately not something we need.
Brad H. March 04, 2013 at 04:16 PM
"We could go back to the spending levels of Bill CLinton and we would still survive." -You mean the spending levels of Bill Clinton when he turned a federal deficit into a record surplus? Sounds good to me!
Lise Quinn March 04, 2013 at 07:27 PM
They didn't survive in the numbers people do now - that is why we started these programs. Maybe you should revisit your 20th century history. This is stupid, they're just plane acrobatics. Not the defense of the country. They aren't dismantling them, their just not fueling them for an airshow. Big deal. Why should we be misappropriating our war machines for civilian entertainment.
Rouchard Duprie March 05, 2013 at 05:00 AM
Simple, the administration has much admiration for the Muslim Brotherhood. And besides, what the government does with your tax dollars is none of your business as it really was never your money to begin with.
Edward A. March 05, 2013 at 05:13 PM
Regarding your first point, that is becoming a familiar "neocon" paranoid fantasy. This administration is not a fan of the Muslim Brotherhood, but they achieved power in democratic elections. That's the danger of democracy in the middle east - many people there want Muslim theocracy, just as many people here want Christian theocracy. Here, thankfully, they are a minority -- and our constitution forbids it. Regarding your second point -- it is painful to watch your country's precious capital wasted, and that's how many of us felt as we watched almost a trillion dollars (most of it borrowed) get squandered in Iraq.
Rouchard Duprie March 05, 2013 at 05:50 PM
@Edward A. "Regarding your first point, that is becoming a familiar "neocon" paranoid fantasy." Worse than fantasy is the cult like, messianic worship of a politician who has a narcissistic personality disorder.
Edward A. March 05, 2013 at 05:58 PM
I don't know if it's worse, but it is bad enough -- it is basically the other extreme. If you poke through my comments on this site, though, you'll see I am not in that category.

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