The scariest thing about the runaway balloon is that we paid $3 billion for it. (update: it seems like this may be the budget for the program, as opposed to the individual blimp).
Late Update: We’re now hearing a lot of reportage that this blimp program is a boondoggle. I have no idea whether that’s the case. Every program has its enemies. And it’s easy to mock what seems like 100 year old technology when blimps can actually be highly effective for various purposes. But here’s the part of this I don’t understand. I don’t understand why you would have something so valuable, so big and with so much critical spy technology on board and not have an effective way to control it or quickly bring it down in a controlled manner if it broke off its tether. That seems very odd.