5 Cuts Pentagon Should Make Now Start with the F-35 mistake: Paul Barrett By John Johnson, Newser Staff Posted Feb 26, 2013 12:08 PM CST 22 comments Comments This undated photo provided by Northrop Grumman shows a pre-production model of the F-35 fighter jet. (AP) (Newser) – To hear the Pentagon tell it, the looming sequester cuts will hurt military readiness and put the nation at genuine risk. "Flapdoodle," writes Paul Barrett at Businessweek. "The military is manufacturing a crisis to protect its wasteful, bloated, poorly designed budget." He suggests five cuts the Pentagon can make now to solve the crisis: F-35 jets: It's time to stop this $400 billion boondoggle. The program is 70% over budget, seven years behind schedule, and the first jets produced already have problems. What's more, knowledgeable critics don't think the planes are that much better than existing jets. M-1 tanks: Unless we're planning a ground war in Europe anytime soon, these combat tanks offer little strategic value. And yet, Congress plans to spend billions to update them. Littoral Combat Ship: This ship is supposed to be an expensive and versatile patrol vessel, but the cost per ship has doubled to $440 million. Oh, and "evaluators have determined that its guns aren’t effective, meaning it might not survive in combat." Click for the full list, which includes the expensive and too-massive Ground Combat Vehicle. Meanwhile, the Senate's No. 2 Republican is arguing that sequester cuts won't hurt the Pentagon anyway, reports CNN.