So, Sen. Susan Collins has received the endorsement of all four unions at Bath Iron Wor – I mean, General Dynamics (“Collins wins BIW union endorsements,” April 24). Well, like I always say: Follow the money! In this case, our tax dollars.

Susan Collins sits on the Senate “Defense” Appropriations Committee. She plays a large role in deciding where billions of tax dollars from the “defense” budget end up. Pretty good for a senator who pledged to serve only two terms if elected. That “12 years is long enough” and that she would “then come home and let someone else take (her) place.”

Sen. Collins is now looking to make it 24 years. And why not? It’s easy. When you hold the purse strings to the war machine, all you have to do is throw General Dynamics, one of your largest campaign donors, a billion or 20 and you’re in!

With a jobs program as big as the “defense” budget, bigger than that of the next 10 countries combined, who’d miss it?

Although jobs at BIW have steadily declined during Collins’ tenure, that’s OK with executives at General Dynamics. At least they don’t have to compete unsubsidized in the private sector, actually producing something of economic value. They get a steady diet of government aid from Uncle Sugar. Too bad, really.

Shenna Bellows would like to use some of that money to diversify and build ships and other things that will actually be beneficial to the people, jobs and economic growth. Studies show, dollar for dollar, military spending is dead last in stimulating economic growth and creating jobs.

But go ahead, unions. Keep building $7 billion warships, sustaining few jobs and lining the pockets of management with Susan Collins, rather than roads, bridges, schools and high-tech products with Shenna Bellows, creating many, sustainable jobs.

Bruce Maasbyll