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Showing content with the highest reputation since 04/19/2017 in all areas

  1. 33 points
    Meh, I disagree nsplayer. I enjoyed the show while it lasted. More importantly, I will tell anyone who listens with what is wrong with the Air Force. Some I have solutions for and for others I am at a loss on how to fix. Actually Chang, the persona that you portrayed here, although completely overdone, are the sum total of the sentiments that are causing people to head for the door. What causes disappointment? Unrealized expectations. I think you have to start there. The last 10 or so years have been really tough on the CGOs. We came into the AF after 9-11 being told that the #1 priority of the AF is lethality, yet we are held to a completely different standard of measurement. I was an '08 commissionee from ROTC and worked my butt off to get to UPT, 38s and hopefully to a fighter, just to be told that there was no where for us to go except RPAs and AMC. Big disappointment, but whatever, I press on. Get to my AMC unit and less than a year later I am writing a RRF for my 1st of 2 RIF boards. Meanwhile my fighter brethren (the 30 or so they created in my whole year group) were now considered undermanned. On my 4th deployment, my CC calls me to tell me that he has to get me on the next VML otherwise an RPA may be non-vold must-fill from AFPC. I end up going to T-6 UPT, my dream job at the time. While I am in PIT I face the #2 RIF/VSP of my career, while my 11F brothers (whoever is left) are now critically manned. I get sat down by my T-6 SQ/CC and told that although my record is outstanding, my career field (11M) is 175% manned and I haven't even completed PIT yet, so prepare for the worst/hope for the best. Also, we are cutting for the next 5 years. I go out and get my dream job, and apply for Palace Chase only to be denied because now even though my career field is still overmanned, the AF as a whole is short on pilots. Me, I still keep kicking @ss, pulling down #1 Sq/OG strats and moving my way up in the Sq. Get tasked with a 6 month non-flying deployment to some $hithole to be underemployed and a job that would have actually been better to have been CONUS doing (timezone differences). Somewhere in there my family (wife+kids) made up their mind that we were done getting jerked around, so I have been making my way to the door ever since. After 10 years of stellar service, 5 deployments, missing years of my kids lives, I get called a quitter and told that I have no future in my Sq. I could write a lot more, but I just don't care to relive it anymore. I hate the fact that the AF made me fall out of love with something that I fought so hard to be apart of. I have seen this organization change in just the 10 years I've been in and it is unrecognizable. I sincerely want the AF to get better and be better, so let me know if you have any questions. Sent from my iPhone using Baseops Network Forums
  2. 32 points
    Holy hell, maybe it’s the 4.5 hours I just spent in an ejection seat and only spent 15 seconds upside down but F-ck me!!!! Us old salty sport b-tching bastards have complained so much we have UPT bound cadets worried. Alright Bird12, listen up, because you are wrong. If anything the ship is righting itself from what I see, but Us old dudes were on board when it was sinking so different view People on here have generally been/there, done that, diverse backgrounds/experiences. I get tired of my buddies b-tching about the same things I’m bitching about in the sq bar over the same brand of scotch so I read this forum. I want to hear how lousy the poor bastard flying the other jet has it so I can feel better -or- how good he has it so I can complain that community x gets all the good deals and wtf was I thinking taking the bonus because xx is at delta making $xx and here the f-ck I am getting $3.50 per day not allowed to drink beer on St Paddy’s day. Sport bitching is in fact a sport among pilots. (Hence the name) Very few of us really hate our jobs or the USAF. Perspective. I had a brand new straight out of MQT Lt on my wing in the AO, we flew a 4.5 hr mission full of in my opinion, sh-tty taskings, sh-tty scenery, sh-tty tankers, ATC, well you name it, to me it was all sh-t minus the 2 x barrel rolls in the descent. When we got out of the jet I wanted to apologize for his first sortie in the AO being so sh-tty. He was smiling ear to ear. My sh-tty 200th AAR was his first on that type of tanker. My sh-tty 200th time over the desert was his first. He loved it See my point. So you f-cking should be excited bird12, you got a chance at the coolest job in the world. Keep some perspective and know who you are listening to on this forum. If I were in your shoes I’d pay good money for the flight I did today however at my age/experience I’d just assume send someone else so I could sit in ops, drink coffee and complain about how f-cking stupid the USAF leadership is, how I’m not getting paid enough, how cool the Cold War days were, how great the airlines are according to my friends etc. Out
  3. 32 points
    So, there I was. No shit. Middle of an ORE at Shaw, first of three sorties for the day turning ACT x ACT x RED. I was a brand new CMR #2, all thrust, no vector; I'm a pitbull on a fvcking leash. Brief and ground ops were uneventful, up to the point where PFL (wussy flight lead) calls Ops and tries to cancel due to isolated VCTS. Fvcking FAIPs. Ops recommended he grow a pair so we took off and headed west. After precisely 69% of the vul covered, with a clean picture and most of my missiles expended, the SOF calls on AUX - mushroom cloud overhead; we need to divert to WRB. PFL quibbles, something about it being his turn to cook dinner that night. Those of you who know MatMac are aware: this is no joke. Anyway, Georgia is a state where (up to that point) I had yet to slay so I tactically declared BINGO and reached back with my right hand to make sure my helmet bag contained my trusty mark-1 divert kit: deodorant, toothbrush and a box of rubbers. On vectors to WRB I've got snowplow called up and I wisely aimed for every rainshower I could... On the ground, we talk to TA about turning our jets. Well, I talked to TA. PFL was on the horn with his wife and then PF Chang's ordering food so he didn't get in trouble. Turns out TA will take 3 hrs to turn the 8 jets so we go to the bowling alley to get lunch. This is where the fun starts. It's summertime, so school is out. I spy a group of four lovely ladies (who were looking for heroes) on lanes 6-9. I give PFL a 5-spot and directions to order a burger, then I go anchor by the ladies. Turns out the outgoing blonde is the wing king's daughter and the others are her friends from the nursing program who happen to be visiting during the summer. Shitty food is consumed. Numbers are exchanged. I depart for Base Ops with digits and the hope of a road trip some upcoming weekend. I proceeded to do the most thorough pre-flight inspection of my life. Low and behold, I find an EMS bit ball had popped after landing! Sure, if I had noticed it on my post-flight then maybe they would have had time to send dudes from Shaw to fix it that day. Not likely though. Now, everyone knows that flight through precip is likely to trip one without any real problems, so PFL comes over to survey the situation. He closes the panel and asks what I'm gonna do. I give my best pep talk about how happiness comes in small doses and opportunities to be true heroes are rare. His response: "I know dude, that's why I need to get home. I'm only allowed two TDYs a year, I don't want to burn one in WRB." SQ policy was to divert as two-ships but I sit idly by with a shit-eating grin on my face as 7 jets blast for home and I walk off to the Qs, helmet bag thrown over my shoulder. Aftermath: he told me the lettuce wraps were particularly good at home that night. Me, on the other hand - I got back the following afternoon and was completely spent. 4 nursing students not worth burning one of your allocated TDYs on? For me it was, and all it cost me was a phone call to my neighbors to take care of my dog. Well, that and I did have to replenish one divert kit.
  4. 29 points
    So the draft outline for the script for Top Gun 2 has leaked (probably Trump and/or Russians. Same thing, right?): "TOP GUN 2: This Time It's Non-Gender Specific" Having been caught up in the 'Fat Leonard' supply scandal, former Rear Admiral, now Captain Pete 'Maverick' Mitchell is given his final assignment as the Commanding Officer, Naval Fighter Weapons School, Miramar Naval Air Station, California. Having been the number two graduate of his class in 1986, 'Maverick's' has unique insight into what the daring young aviators have to face in flying their high-performance, stomach-churning aerial chargers in modern air combat. SCENE 1: 'Maverick' is shown being given a ticket by the Shore Patrol after he was caught driving his Lexus on the flight line road trying to keep up with an F-18 doing touch-and-goes, exceeding the station's 25 mph speed limit by nearly 8 mph. SCENE 2: 'Maverick' puts the auditorium at ease to welcome the Class of 2017B. The roster includes three women, a two-dude married couple, one undeclared person, and four heterosexual men; one black, one Hispanic, one Asian, one White. "Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Top Gun. I am Captain Maverick Mitchell and I want...yes? What is it, lieutenant?" "Sir, you only welcomed the ladies - which is a very patriarchacal thing to do - and the men - which just demonstrates their historic privilege. But you didn't include the zir. I am offended and have uploaded your comments to youtube. I assume I will be receiving an apology from the Department of the Navy and you after the press conference with Gloria Allred?" SCENE 3: Operations Officer Holly 'Diaper' Nowak briefing the class for a mission: "Today, you are scheduled for a 4v4 DACT - Hornets against the 3rd generation contract air. Unfortunately, the MC rate won't support it, so "Snowflake" and "Cis-G" you two will go fly a BFM. The rest of you can knock out some of your CBTs." SCENE 4: Having sweated their way through the CBTs, the 2017B class makes its way over to the Miramar All-Ranks Club where the SARC and Alcohol Prevention offices check their IDs at the door, carefully noting their data, and placing their CAC cards in the file to be retrieved on the way out, after the mandatory breathalyzer and room sweep checking for sexual assault victims. Finally making their way to the near-empty bar, as the Isley Brothers "You've lost that lovin' feelin'" begins to blare from the speakers, the four heterosexual men are accosted by the irate school instructor that looks remarkably like Kelly McGillis. But not the hot, wild-haired Kelly. No this the haggish, yet with an Adam's apple, Kelly who instantly begins to berate them for building the modern world. SCENE 5: Meanwhile, in an unnamed Middle Eastern country, the despot that rules that arid, worthless land gases and kills his citizens. Despite it having absolutely no strategic value to the United States, the President, fully backed by the hawks in Congress dependent upon the defense contractors in their districts, sends a short-manned carrier battle group to the region. Why it's short-manned, especially in pilots, is never questioned. Class 2017B receives its orders to man, er, person-up the carrier's flight department despite not having worked up or being current in carrier operations. Stepping into their F-35Cs, they find out that "this helmet is too heavy." This ejection seat is "too tall." But this all-seeing, all-knowing fighter is "just right." Flying an Alpha strike (not your father's Vietnam Alpha strike of 50 jets), this one has four F-35s and two UCAVs, our class of heroes flies into the double-digit SAM rings where they all synch their Blueteeth to some Starbuck's selected folk-rock tunes and proceed to ISR the hell out of the dirt. They return to the boat, all take the three wire, shut down. And hand in their separation papers since they each got a call from major airline. AND CUT...
  5. 28 points
    I'll add my two cents (and some more). Soooooo not everyone on this board agrees with Tony Carr's perspective on the USAF - see his editorial on the Thunderbird mishap from last June and (if you know ANYTHING), you'll know that that piece was designed to elicit an emotional response, did nothing to satisfy public curiosity about the event, shed no new light on the event, and was literally the journalistic equivalent of throwing $hit at a wall - in the name of smearing the AF (cause he thinks it's fun, IMO). After that post I was honestly not sure whether or not to take him seriously any more - and I don't. He was a previous safety guy who "had F-16 experience" but yet he wrote it as someone would who lacked a military flying background. His response to my analysis (http://disq.us/p/1ejpsoe) of his editorial was dismissive, and when presented with facts, he avoided the issue. I don't consider him value-added at this point - as I do this message board. I think he's a semi-talented, own-press-reading, bitter, (ret) Lt Col who has nothing better to do with his time than sport bitch on the internet. I think lots of people agree with that sentiment, and while he can sometimes come close the mark, I don't think (in general) he is that interesting any more. On that note, and to your question, I don't think the root cause of the USAF's current crisis has much to do with leadership in a traditional sense, but then again, I was never one who drank the AF koolaid that would have all its officers believe that leadership is the panacea to every and all problems. No, sometimes, people make poor decisions and it's not because they are poor leaders. And sometimes, it doesn't matter who's at the seat, there can be (and are) systemic issues in an organization which have far greater effects. Pinning it all on "toxic leadership" is what someone who is still pissed at a lot of previous superiors does when he is no longer subject to their rule. That said, if you choose to orient yourself in such a way, then I suppose that everything can be boiled down to poor leadership (not toxic), but I think there are more systemic issues as to why the USAF is in its current state, and when viewed in that light, will lead to more fruitful changes. 1. 179s: Look a troop in the eye, and tell them that the reason they're going down range for 179 days (vs 180 or more) has nothing to do with the USAF's policy of granting short-tour credit for deployments of longer length (sts). http://www.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/112915/air-force-normalizes-short-tour-credit-policy/. IMO, there is only one reason such a policy could exist, and it is to screw airmen out of a medal, deployment credit, make it easier for the personnel machine to send them downrange again sooner, or whatever. Justifications along the lines of "well, we will need to be able to deploy them again" do not hold water. All airmen who were getting short-tour credit for 180+ day deployments were playing by the same rules, and were all on the same "list". What shifting a policy did while we were in the middle of a war, was create two groups of people - those who had deployed for >181 and <365 who got credit, and those who did not - that is a ripple in the system, and though it may not have an immediately visible consequence, it certainly has an effect and was unfair to lots of people. So, that's one example of something wrong, which has nothing to do with anyone wearing < 4 stars on their shoulders. But toxic leadership? Maybe, but by only one person - not a culture of it. 2. RIFs/Force-shaping: During my time in the USAF, I "survived" two RRFs (I think, maybe, I can't remember at this point). One occurred shortly after I finished the B-Course. The U-S-A-F sent me, a fighter pilot, paperwork that suggested I may not be retained, literally immediately after I finished soaking up the better part of $5M in training costs/taxpayer money and with nearly 10 years of commitment remaining. IMO, this was done in the name of "social justice" - an example of a policy enacted to make everyone feel like they're on the same page and are all of equal value. Was I actually concerned I was going to be force-shaped? Nope. But this is an example of something that is wrong with the AF at a cultural level. Fixing this would go a long way toward re-orienting the AF in the correct direction, but (I get it) it would cause A LOT of teeth-gnashing with the REMFs, and that is a merge I highly doubt the AF wants to buy - because we MUST be socially just, we absolutely must be (sarcasm). 2a. In 2011, the USAF got rid of 157 Majors who should have been allowed to retire: http://dailycaller.com/2011/11/25/military-advocates-decry-illegal-early-terminations-of-157-air-force-majors/ http://nation.time.com/2012/01/03/air-force-firing-for-effect/ This occurred, and then (almost immediately), the USAF sought to be granted TERA (and was given it) in order to "slim down": http://www.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/467816/eligible-officers-enlisted-members-offered-early-retirement/ http://www.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/483997/af-opens-additional-tera-vsp-windows/ http://www.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/467713/af-announces-additional-force-management-programs-to-reduce-force-size/ https://federalnewsradio.com/retirement/2016/01/greg-rinckey-air-force-officers-demand-reinstatement/ Does that not cause one to scratch their head (who said head)? Look a troop in the eye and tell them this is not the apex of hypocrisy and short-sighted decision making. If you ask me, this is an instance of breaking faith with people. And before we cry uncle and say "well we're subject to civilian leadership decisions", I don't remember any stars falling on their swords over that one. GOs should have been resigning up and down the chain over that one. Again, like it or not, when people witness decisions like this, it affects their "matrix" and they then re-evaluate their criteria for staying in the AF for the long haul. What this sequence of decisions made clear was that a member's continued service was arbitrary, and subject to the flavor of the month. That is not going to be good enough for most people who are investing the most valuable years of their working lives towards a successful career, and I think this has had a direct and lasting affect on morale and retention. Again, this is an example of a policy decision that created two classes of people: those who served > 15 years and were not given a retirement, and those who were. 3. Shortly on the pilot bonus: the fact that it hasn't change in what, 20+ years, communicates a lot - if not directly, then indirectly. All the hand-wringing about increased amounts being just around the corner is a little pathetic, and is obviously being done from a reactionary perspective. This should have been addressed YEARS ago, because the Airline hiring wave is NOT a surprise. 4. Focus: This, to me, boils down to what the USAF should be focused on. IMO, it is high-time that "space" and "cyber" became their own separate service (or perhaps services). Much like the USAF growth out of the Army benefited both branches, I think another, modern version of that evolution needs to take place with those two realms so they can get the focus they need, and we can get ours. No, space is NOT a continuation of the "air domain", and neither is cyber. There, I said it. Sure, they abut, but so does the surface of the sea/Earth, with the sky, yet we have different branches dedicated to those domains. IMO the AF is in love with the idea of being a one-sized fits all solution to all problems (or maybe they're addicted to the money, IDK). That last point will lead me to #5. 4a. It was suggested on other message boards that more 11X presence is needed throughout the AF - from staffs, to the FSS. I fully agree with this sentiment, and would happily displace an FSS Maj or Lt Col (while remaining on flying status) and run that shop/unit. Would I be there everyday? Nope, but I wouldn't need to be. See, it's all about policy and setting an expectation. The USAF for far too long has been ceding ever more control to those who don't have to cross a wire. Why is this? Do we really need a finance-trained, specialized Maj/Lt Col to run the finance shop? Really? Does that person even know how to operate DTS or whatever else? And even if they do know how, do they? I highly suspect they fill more of figure-head roll; a leader of those units could easily come from an 11X background and provide actual, bonafied leadership. I would go so far as to say that in order to command anything, you should have to be a rated officer. Yes, this caps non-rated officers - tough shit. Go get wings. 5. This is likely an unpopular opinion on this board, but the biggest mistakes we have recently made (as a nation) have been the strategic errors of invading Iraq in 2003, the "how" of invading Afghanistan in 2001, and then the subsequent withdrawal from Iraq in whenever we actually did it. Bottom line on this one, is that the USAF leadership (at the time) should have thrown down a firm "no" when the Army demanded we play in the conflict for as long as we have, as should have the Navy. Drones and snake eaters? You bet. Multi-million dollar fighter jets, the full capes of the world's greatest AF burning holes in the sky, US Navy billion-dollar aircraft carriers? No way. We have WAY over-extended ourselves in these conflicts and have NOTHING to show for it. Well, except a military full of equipment that is falling apart at a time when we least need it. I fully grasp that we were sent to war by our civilian leadership, but not calling a goat by its name isn't solving the problem. No, AFPAK Hands will not succeed. Not because of lack of awesome people and their concerted and earnest efforts, but because the strategic context of its goal is illogical and nonsensical. No amount of Air University PHD-research-papering will make it so. The point of the military is to kill people and break their shit; not to nation-build before a war is won. Advising people who don't want what we want isn't the answer - if there's one thing I learned from my experiences, combined with the 'cross cultural competency' assigned by ACSC, it's that. The sooner our "leadership" - of whatever flavor and level - wake up and recognize this, the better. We have poured (and continue to pour) far too much in time, resources, blood, and money into an unwinnable situation. We need to get back to defining realistic, measurable goals, by which we can actually measure a 1 or 0, we can start counting those. I would much prefer to hear from our leadership that the new, stated goal in Afghanistan is to never allow a Taliban, or al Qaeda sponsored/sympathetic government to take root - and leave it at that. We're not interested in standing up a government there; we're not interested in building girls' schools there; we're not interested in teaching air advisers how to read the JP 3.09-3. We are interested in shooting Hellfires off of drones at anyone associated with the Taliban or al Qaeda for the next 1000 years - that's it. This section has run on way too long, but to sum up: our current strategy only exists because we misunderstand who and what type of people we are fighting. 6. HPO lists, etc. This category is all about creating "classes" of people. The military has always been a good 'ol boys club, and it always will be. Formalizing it in Excel spread sheets, and choosing people while they are Captains is what has created and perpetuated a perception that it literally doesn't matter what you do if you're not on that list. It is nothing more than playing favorites, and creates an environment that leads people to separate - now there's some "leadership". I ultimately believe that more transparency in the assignment and promotion system will go a long way to correcting a lot of the AF's current problems as well. I could, and might, write more, but until next time, if you haven't read this article, the author hits on some extremely relevant points: https://philipgmorrison.wordpress.com/2017/01/15/its-your-move-the-dilemma-of-incurred-commitment-in-the-modern-job-market/. - ViperMan
  6. 27 points
    RF-4C 1. Ops tempo: Outstanding. Best kept secret. Basically a flying club. As a 1Lt it's your airplane with great responsibility; "All we ask is bring it back in one piece." Flying is mostly low level single ship to where ever YOU and your WSO decide to go that day. Not flying, review your film from previous day, do a tour in the RSU, perhaps a little studying in the vault, shelf check at the BX. TDY's and deployments minimal and considered a good deal. AAR training every couple of months. Night AAR is always scheduled with a full moon. If stationed in Germany always save a little fuel for the fur ball with whomever is trolling along the Rhine. 2. LIfestyle/family: Could not be better. Home every day by 5. No working weekends. If stationed in Germany most have a rental Swiss chalet for the winter skiing months. 3. Community morale: Excellent. Surprising amount of fellow pilots UPT DG's. Some turned down fighters to fly Recce. Everyone works and pulls together. 4. Advancement & Future of Airframe: Terrible, once Recce always Recce according to MPC although I managed a 4 yr OA-37 assignment to DM. (another flying club). NO future dedicated manned Recce airframes. 5. Preferred PCS locations: Zweibrucken, Alconbury, Bergstrom. Oh crap, just got up from a nap. Dreaming it was 1977 and not 2017! Sorry guys, you missed a great time in the AF. 10 years AD then off to a legacy airline.
  7. 26 points
    That is an animated gif not a meme you n00b.
  8. 25 points
    [slides chips across the felt] All of it on the little Jewish country.
  9. 24 points
    A colleague who is F22 pilot for the Virginia ANG had honor of flying a Phantom at Eglin. He flew the aircraft we had at the reunion. Here is the F-22 pilot’s thoughts on flying the F-4: I flew your jet a couple days ago (see attached). I had a little trouble getting the engines started, so I climbed out and shoveled some more coal in the back; after that she fired right up. Ground ops were uneventful, although I couldn’t figure out why the cockpit smelled like body odor, Jack Daniels and cigars…and that was BEFORE I got in it! By the way, what’s with the no slip crap on top of the intakes, it’s like you have permanent icing conditions due to that spray on rhino truck bed liner on top of the aircraft. It’s no wonder you needed so much coal (I mean thrust) to get airborne. Take off scared the sh*t out of me. I lit the burners at brick one and 2 miles and 45 minutes later we were ready to rotate. After barely clearing the tree tops, the gear came up and I climbed away at a VERY impressive 2 degrees nose high. In case you don’t remember, “Trim” is your friend in the F-4 (pretty sure it’s also a good friend on the ground too). Once I got her up to speed and a moderate altitude, we were ready for the G-Ex. Two G-turn’s later and I’m sinking like a rock…the F-4’s energy seems to bleed like Holyfield’s ear in the Tyson fight! After the G-Ex it was time to do a little Advanced Handling Characteristics (AHC) and by “advanced handling” I mean the same crap the Wright Brothers were doing back in 1903…just trying to keep it airborne. The jet flies much like my old man’s station wagon used to drive…You turn the wheel (push the stick) a few inches and nothing happens, then all of a sudden the steering kicks in, inertia takes over, and all HELL breaks loose! You’re pretty much along for the ride at that point and only gravity has a real say in your lift vector placement. “Checking 6” was really quite easy…. because you CAN’T! Scratch that off the list of “Sh*t I need to do to keep myself alive in combat today”. Breathing, however, was surprisingly easy in the F-4 when compared to that of the F-22 (thank you Lockheed)…LOX works, who knew! I think I may have burned my legs a bit from the steam pouring out from behind the gauges. Where are my 6 mini-flat screen TV’s, I’m lost without my HD jet displays (editors note: actually, I’m an analog guy stuck in a digital world too…I really do like the “steam driven” gauges). After the AHC, I decided to take her up high and do a supersonic MACH run, and by “high” I mean “where never lark nor even eagle flew”; but not much higher, a foot or two maybe. I mean, we weren’t up there high-fiving Jesus like we do in the Raptor, but it was respectable. It only took me the width of the Gulf of Mexico to get the thing turned around while above the Mach. After the Mach run we dropped to the deck and did 600 kts at 500’; a ratllin’ and shakin’ we will go…. I though all the rivets were going to pop out. Reference previous station wagon analogy! Very quickly we were out of gas and headed home. As I brought the jet up initial, I couldn’t help but think that the boys who took this thing into combat had to have some pretty big brass you know whats! My first F-4 landing was a little rough; sub-standard really by Air Force measure… but apparently “best seen to date” according to the Navy guys. Did you know that there’s no such thing as an aerobrake in the F-4? As soon as the main gear touches down, the nose comes slamming down to the runway with all the force of a meteor hitting the earth….I guess the F-4 aerobrake technique is to dissipate energy via denting the runway. Despite an apparently “decent” landing, stopping was a whole different problem. I reached down and pulled the handle to deploy the drogue chute…at which point a large solid mass of canvas, 550 cord, metal weights and cables fell out and began bouncing down the runway; chasing me like a lost puppy and FOD’ing out the whole runway. Perfect. I mashed down on the breaks and I’m pretty sure at this point the jet just started laughing at me. Why didn’t you warn me that I needed a shuttle landing strip to get this damn thing stopped? All kidding aside, VERY COOL jet! Must have been a kick to fly back when you were in Vietnam! Just kidding!
  10. 24 points
    I fly a little Titan Tornado S now and it is a blast. It's a full light weight metal aircraft with only 80hp (Rotax 912) but it will do a loop, actually more of an oval ellipse since it barely gets over the top and kind of falls off the back side. It cruises at C-172 speeds and has 2 seats in tandem and a stick rather than a yoke. A fun little experimental that carries about as much (600 lbs - that includes the 15 gallons of fuel) as its empty weight (~620lbs). The reason I chose it is that the front seat height is pretty much even with the seat in my wheelchair (I'm paralyzed now so can't use feet/legs) and the rudder and brakes were easy to modify so that I can use my hands to operate all flight controls. Never consciously thought about how much I would miss flying until it was taken away for a little while. The first picture was when I test flew one before I bought mine, the second shot is my plane shot from a friends plane.
  11. 24 points
    Fellas, it's Memorial Day. Let's have a beer for the boys who can't. This thread is brutal and going nowhere fast. Cheers Sent from my iPhone using Baseops Network Forums
  12. 23 points
    I taught your mom all about apotheosis.
  13. 20 points
    This is what is RIGHT with the Air Force, they get it correct sometimes, and this time, they got it so right it will give you chills. Kuddos to Luke AFB.
  14. 20 points
    I don't pay an annual subscription to BO.net to have the drama shut down just when it's getting good... Sent from my Vitamix 450x Professional using Tapatalk
  15. 20 points
    I feel a strong disturbance in the Force, like a 1000 Eagle and Raptor pilots collectively groaning in agony....
  16. 20 points
    The best advice I've received since getting passed over came from another man who had a similar experience (checked the right boxes, nothing negative, excellent line operator, surprise non-promote): "Your life just got a lot easier, you just don't know it yet." He pointed out the importance of people (for however long they might stay in the AF) that can call a spade a spade without worrying if it will hurt their promotion chances. He also pointed out that once you're done in the USAF, no one gives a second thought to if you're a retired major, colonel, or general...it simply doesn't matter. If you're a pilot, a dispatcher, driver, or someone else, that's your job, end of story. He flies big civil planes now where his work day is done and he's headed home before the engines stop spinning, and a driver is waiting on him to take him to the hotel which is already paid for. (strange how you never hear about dispatchers, drivers, and baggage handlers in private aviation demanding the same treatment as pilots at those companies in name of "fairness") That perspective made me realize it doesn't matter who gave the "you're not promoted" news nor how. No changing it, and it's the AF's loss. No matter how important they might be saying pilot retention is, they've made it clear again that line performance will not get you promoted nor continued. To the AF, it all boils down to lines of text on a piece of paper, regardless of how excellent your aviation record, how many lives you've saved, or how many combat sorties you've flown. To me, none of that defines my value as a pilot or a person. If the AF doesn't want talent, that's their problem, not mine. How much more do I need to know? FF
  17. 19 points
    I start to get sore and floppy after about 3
  18. 18 points
    I put up with your incoherent posts and even partially agreed with one or two. In all sincerity, it truly frightens me that there are officers in the Air Force as dumb as you project yourself to be on this forum. I mean that with all due respect. Sent from my iPhone using Baseops Network Forums
  19. 18 points
    The absolute root cause of so many of the current problems. "Picking" an officer as a captain long before their leadership is truly proven and pushing them uphill regardless of their flaws creates caustic entitled assholes. When we end up with folks who destroy the morale of units, commit sins that are white washed away (right after they hammer a subordinate for the same sin), and show questionable leadership while flying only to have the superiors say "we can't afford for him/her to fail, we have invested too much and we need another GO." This is why the institution is failing and this is why the concerns of the masses do not resonate with most of the current leadership.
  20. 17 points
    TL;DR: We like to think that pilots have to run the Air Force, but they got us into this mess. What other conclusion is left to be drawn? With very few exceptions, the Air Force is helmed up and down the chain by pilots. Groups, wings, NAFs, MAJCOMs, staff positions, functionals, CAOC spots, deployed units, IGs... Lots and lots of pilots. Who is responsible for the failings of an organization if not for the leaders? How many excuses are we supposed to make for them? And let's not play the "good dude" game either. Being a successful organizational leader is not about how fun you were to drink with 10 years ago, or how sh*t-hot you were in the jet, or how much you "get it" when you're having a closed door town hall with a random unit in their bar heritage room. There is only one measure-- how is the organization doing. The examples are legion. I'll give a few that have, over the years, stood out as very distilled, specific instances of poor leadership. 1. DV visits. If I had a dollar for every DV that said they didn't want the base to stop doing it's mission to prepare for their arrival after they arrived, you'd think I was paying my way through medical school the old fashioned way. If you can't fathom the way your rank and position affect your subordinates in an organization you've been a part of for 30+ years, on what planet should you be leading it? Can we all just finally admit that yes, they do want it? They like it a lot. Even if not for themselves, then for what they believe the military should look like. But most likely because that type of treatment is addictive. Name one theory of leadership taught in any level of PME that promotes the type of behavior we see when senior leaders visit a base. Did they skip those classes? Because I have a f*cking masters degree in it from ACSC. 2. We have been at the Deid since what? 2002? I have no clue. A long time. And of those years, every. single. summer. has been excruciatingly hot. Yet somehow, despite there being an airport right down the road in the exact same climate with hundreds of flights per day, leadership at AUAB has not figured out how to get every plane suitable air conditioning for the preflight. Seriously? Some flight doc measured the internal surfaces of the aircraft at over 160F, and the air temp inside a boom pod at over 140. This isn't a war against the Axis in an austere location, it's normal ops. If you can't look at that as a leader (and one who has flown planes!) and deduce that there should be adequate cooling for the aircraft... RyanAir is the human equivalent of a Pakistani poultry trailer without the rights activists, yet they manage to keep the planes cool on the ground. Oh, and let's not forget about the black mold that no leader saw fit to address until Congress heard about it. 3. Of course, the pilot crisis. And not that it happened, not the years of neglect that led up to it, not the countless forums and round-tables, and hangar-flies that went ignored, while the CGO/Maj force screamed for attention. I actually understand how we got to where we are today. What I don't get is how now that the problem exists, announced, published, and even presented to congress, how can we still be bungling the response? This thread is proof. Changes to the promotion process? Secret. Timeline? Mystery. People who apply for the bonus early? Gotcha! I'm not saying pilots can't make great organizational leaders. I'm sure some are great. But we have two things to compare: A. That a war-fighting organization can be effectively led by selecting from a small percentage of the overall population (pilots) those who demonstrate over the first half of their career a talent for paperwork, physical fitness, administrative tasks, and personal presentation, but who generally have little to no experience leading people until squadron command. This, as of today, is an unproven theory. B. That a war-fighting organization led by a small percentage of the overall population (pilots) who demonstrated over the first half of their career a talent for paperwork, physical fitness, administrative tasks, and personal presentation, but who generally have little to no experience leading people until squadron command, will crumble under external pressures, e.g., Congressional inquiries, workforce competition, etc. This, as of today, is supported by the evidence. If pilots make such great organizational leaders, I'd love to see it. Check rides aren't graded on who had the best attitude. I'd rather choke that go through it, but I'm guessing WIC grads, the best of our pilots, didn't get their patch because they filled out the 781s better than anyone else. No one cares how your flight suit looks if you show up the the ARCP late. The flying world, last I checked, prides itself of results-based assessment, yet when it comes to leading the organization, we abandon the principal for proclamations of past dudeliness... At some point we have to assign responsibility. If you want to say that it's just because we are picking the wrong pilots for the job, fine, but guess what? Pilots are the ones doing the picking. Pilots are the ones who have signed off on our ludicrous promotions system. Pilots are the ones standing by silently while the legal system is twisted to suit the preferences of a vindictive wing commander. Pilots are the ones telling congress it's pretty darn good. Pilots are the ones telling young captains to quit if they don't like it, someone will gladly replace them. Please, tell me why I'm wrong.
  21. 17 points
    Fly yourself to karate lessons? Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  22. 17 points
  23. 17 points
    I was a snacko once as a Lt Col, and I was the best goddamn snacko that squadron ever saw.
  24. 17 points
    I'll gladly support trimming some military earned benefits (not entitlements thanks) when I start seeing other unearned entitlements (welfare) in society getting trimmed as well.
  25. 16 points
  26. 16 points
    Bake a cake for a same sex couple.
  27. 15 points
    Nah, it’s totally Congress’ fault that I spend 40 hours a week on OPRs, awards, decs, making trackers, making trackers to track the trackers, making slides, staff meetings, responding to every single made-up tasker invented by some level of leadership, CBTs, SAPR training, commanders calls, FOD walks to make Mx troops feel validated, planning parties, attending parties, planning retirement and promotion ceremonies, forced attendance at awards ceremonies, mandatory PT sessions, forced mentorship sessions all tailored at building the next Chief of Staff which nobody wants to be, getting non-vol’d to watch other dudes dicks as they piss into cups, sitting Sup, sitting SOF, and any other 60-90 completely valid tasks. Oh , plus the 15 hours a week that I actually devote to flying related stuff. It’s kind of like a hobby of mine. But this is all due to Congress and funding. Nobody would think that any of this crap is self-induced. I trust my overlords to fix the problem they created, and cannot identify.
  28. 15 points
  29. 15 points
    Exactly! When I hear people complain about how the CE, Mx, LRS, Comm, etc, Lt or Captain has been leading 20-200 people for the last 10 years I ask them a few questions. "Do you know what a Combined Air Operations Center is?" "What is Dynamic Targeting? "What is Defensive Counter Air?" "What is a JFACC and do you want to be one?" "How do you feel about our Command and Control capabilities in CENTCOM?" "How about the Asia Pacific region?" "Have you ever heard of a Flanker, a Long Range SAM, or an AWACS?" I usually get a blank stare, and words to the effect of..."I don't care about that stuff, that's your job." This infuriates me. Support functions are important. Hell, OCA-Escort is a support function. I think increased leadership opportunities outside the cockpit are important, but we shouldn't forget that a package lead, mission commander, or weapons officer (speaking from a CAF perspective) does a whole lot of leading and does/should apply that leadership experience. Somewhere in the last 10-20 years in the Air Force and DoD we decided to downplay that experience; at our detriment in my opinion. Don't be an asshole, but we need to stop downplaying tactical leadership. Working well with others, not being a jerk, as well as leading, planning, executing, and debriefing with 300 other aviators to get better after flying a 40 v 60 is pretty relatable to leading a squadron. Just one man's opinion... Cheers, Beerman
  30. 15 points
    At my base, aircrew are now required to operate the high lift trucks instead of AFE. That means I have to get pilots and navs to take a course on how to drive the stupid truck, and then have them take it on as an additional duty. It means when I have a TDY departing or arriving on weekend, someone has to come in just to drive the damn truck. Also, I had to assign a young copilot to watch other chicks piss in cups for a solid week, 0700-1600. I get sitting SOF (kind of). I get sitting Sup. But what in the bloody hell are we doing? Aside from the insanity of having a pilot, who has millions of dollars invested in their training, not fly in order to drive a truck or watch people urinate... this kind of crap just kills morale. My Lt copilots are all jaded. How can you blame them? It's about unmet expectations. They worked and sacrificed more than their peers to become military pilots. Then we have them do things an E-1 should be doing. The Air Force is insane. What they are doing with additional duties is like having a neurosurgeon do less surgeries so he can help the janitors (who get paid the same as the neurosurgeons).
  31. 15 points
    I grew up riding in cars...I'm basically a certified mechanic.
  32. 14 points
    I feel bad for whoever gets fragged for this SIB. Not only do they lose a month+ of flying, but they have to listen to Raptor dudes refer to their jet in the 3rd person. ("And then, Raptor did....")
  33. 14 points
    Hey y'all, I was a little more active on here a few years back when applying to guard units but have lurked off & on since then. I live in Houston where, as most are aware, we had some pretty gnarly flooding from Hurricane Harvey. As shitty as the situation has been for so many in the area, it has largely brought out the best in people. My wife and I were lucky enough to be spared from anything serious, but homes just a few blocks away were inundated with floodwater. Watching USCG helicopters snag folks from rooftops just a few streets over was pretty surreal. The other day, I watched a -130 refueling a couple pavehawks directly over my neighborhood. I grew up around AF bases, so seeing aircraft overhead is something I'm pretty used to. Watching them putting in serious work to help save lives was something new entirely. With that said, I'm sure more than a few of you on here have been involved, either directly or indirectly, with rescue, recovery, and aid efforts in response to the storm. On behalf of everyone in Houston and SE Texas, I just wanted to say thanks. If you've ever in the area, let me know and beers are on me.
  34. 14 points
    In the 17-18 days a month that I do have off, I'm usually thinking of things other than flying. I'm contemplating random things like maintaining the NaCl level in my pool after it rains. Or, how I'm going to buff out the 6" gash in the door of my wife's brand new Porsche after my son crashed into it with his bike when I took his training wheels off. Or what speakers I'm going to use in the movie room of my house when I upgrade from my 5.1 Dolby surround to 9.1.2 Atmos.
  35. 14 points
    There's one aspect everyone keeps overlooking: you only get one chance in your life to fly fighters, if you're lucky. Definitely not for everyone but, if pay, hours, or lifestyle have anything to do with whether or not you want to join the club, then we don't want you and you probably won't make it anyways. There will be a time when I'm done flying fighters and I'll leave this all behind. I won't miss the long hours, all the hard work, or the stress that is intrinsic to the job. I will miss the flying, shooting the gun, lasing bombs in, Turkey shoots, BFM, roll calls, naming ceremonies, and all the shenanigans with the bros. When the time comes, I'll move on, but I'll really miss all the amazing shit I did with all the amazing people. All the hard work is definitely worth it. Sent from my SM-G920V using Tapatalk
  36. 14 points
    Where are you and how do I go there? Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  37. 14 points
    CE guy here...good discussion. Here is my perspective: - The arguments that flyers deal with too much queep and flyers should lead mission support squadrons are mutually exclusive. The majority of the queep in a CE squadron is personnel, finance, environmental, or contracting related. Much of the queep is driven at the HAF, DoD, or federal government level. Putting a flyer in charge of a CE squadron isn't going to eliminate queep. The queep problem originates with the fact that our government has become the most useless, grid-locked bureaucracy in modern history. So, you have to choose one argument or the other. Putting a flyer in a support squadron is going to increase the queep they deal with exponentially. - Many times the queep starts with a pilot. I've pulled teams off of apron repair to fix potholes in the wing headquarters parking lot. I've also had heavy equipment operators turn snow over with a shovel before a DV visit so you can only see "clean snow." No shit. That stuff wasn't an engineer's idea, and it is embarrassing and humbling to go ask trained people to do those things while making it "your own" (i.e. Not diming out wing leadership) - The Air Force chose long ago to invest in cool jets and not facilities. Probably a wise decision given our budget. But, I only get about 50% of the funds I need to maintain the base in a fair condition. One third of our squadrons are often deployed, and there isn't the manpower to execute 100% of those funds even if we got them. - Flyers don't understand what their support squadrons provide in terms of readiness because squadrons don't deploy with the wings they support. For CE Airmen, readiness means that our Airmen need to be able to repair a cratered runway, setup emergency airfield lighting, setup aircraft arresting systems, and provide drinking water among a host of other tasks. When most people think of CE, they think of Bubba plunging their toilet. Bubba is very important, but he is a very small piece of the pie. When we deploy, we need flyers dropping bombs, not figuring how to get water from A to B. - Where engineers often fail is telling the operational community where we can't support. Sometimes we let work slip into the black hole, which is unsat. So, this diatribe probably fits better in what's wrong with the AF, but the takeaway is that I don't think moving flyers into support squadrons is a cure all in terms of fixing support functions and rated promotion rates, and it certainly isn't as easy as some would think. If people are leaving because of all the non-flying stuff they have to do, moving someone into a support squadron seems like the worst thing you could do. I don't know what the right answer is to the pilot crisis, but I hope you guys figure it out. The nation needs you guys, and I'm proud to support you.
  38. 14 points
    People that know real things know they cannot brag about it, you under estimate most of us.
  39. 14 points
    Don't waste your time on Chang...now, for something more entertaining. FLBP Sent from my iPhone using Baseops Network Forums
  40. 13 points
    The Problem Statement on Slide 1, which supposedly drives the entire discussion, is fundamentally flawed. They're not even addressing the right problems. To say that the "aircrew ecosystem" has been damaged by unstable funding and will be improved by "stable and predictable funding" and "advanced technologies" shows a complete lack of acknowledgment of the real problem.
  41. 13 points
  42. 13 points
  43. 13 points
    Ram, stop being a pussy. And go get me an Ensure... after you get off my lawn, you pussy.
  44. 13 points
    I'll have whatever you're drinking.
  45. 13 points
    Yup. Most interesting meeting I've ever been in that didn't involve discussion about blowing shit up. Refreshing to see a 3 button getting basically yelled at by a room full of crusty O-3s and O-4s. Some big takeaways: 1. He came into the meeting incredibly insulated from what is going on. His disconnect from reality was no fault of his own, but very clear. For example, he couldn't wrap his head around guys not wanting to be "developed" by way of ACSC and other PME. Also was unaware of some of the buffoonery going on such as Vance being dry, the elimination of additional duties memo being largely ignored, and the perception that the AF is at best incompetent in the way it handles people, and at worst malicious. It was obvious that the O-4s he is surrounded are the pickle shining types would would rather die than tell the boss bad news. We didn't have that problem, and he wasn't sure how to react. 2. "There is a plan in the work, trust us". Supposedly there is a 28 point plan of some kind floating around to address the retention issue. See point 1 for his reaction to our skepticism of it. 3. He doesn't even know that he is fed a steady diet of bullshit. He told a story of a great base visit he went on, and was dismissive when told to take everything he sees on a base visit with the biggest grain of salt he can fit on the jet he rode in on. He didn't realize that whenever guys like him show up, guys like the ones in that room get stuffed in a closet. 4. Stop loss is off the table. CSAF realizes that even IF they could get a stop loss approved (unlikely) it will permanently break any chance they have at retention. They'd get a temporary bump from locking guys down, but they know that as soon as that lockdown inevitably ends, EVERYONE leaves, not just the people who were on the fence before. So maybe we opened his eyes, but even if we did, points 1 and 3 above kinda indicate that at best he will be one more voice yelling at the brick wall. The AF is chronically averse to making the kind of changes necessary to retain pilots, and will continue to hemorrhage talent.
  46. 13 points
    All bitches, dudes, bros, FGOs and wiggers go back to your corners. cantfly is in time out, redirect all bitching towards the AF.
  47. 12 points
  48. 12 points
    Ok, you asked. Fedex 777. Mission is to make the company billions and for me grab some of the crumbs to the tune of $250K a year as a co-pilot(First Officer). Typically work 12-14 days per month either all at once with the rest of the month off or week-on, week-off. Much of that work time is soft time (i.e. not actual flying hours). Typically, I'm paid for 80-90 flight hours each month, but it's rare for me to actually have air under my ass for more than 50 hours each month. Since I'm an FO, many trip are as a relief pilot which involves deadheading around the planet in business or first class to various locations where I will meet up with the crew and act as the "free agent" third or fourth pilot on a long haul flight and then part ways. For the last 10 years straight, I've made the highest level in American Airline's frequent flyer program annually and have 1.5 million miles to use for family leisure travel. I can choose how I orchestrate my passenger deadhead flights using the company money available and any extra $$ is available for various travel expenses incurred in conjunction with any trip. Next month, I will be picked up at my house by a limo (paid for by Fedex) and driven to O'hare to begin my journey to Tokyo. My trip is due to start on a Thursday but since I'm not going to follow the deadhead schedule, I will stay home on day one getting paid. Friday, I will fly from O'hare to Tokyo in a lay flat business class seat sipping single malt and maybe catch a movie. From there, I'll take the bullet train to Osaka and have about 48 hours off before I have to work. My only flight on this trip is a 4-hour leg from Osaka to Guangzhou, China. Once I arrive in China, I'm done. I have a quick 12-hour layover and then I'm scheduled for 3 day deadhead sequence to get back to Memphis. Since I don't want to go to Memphis, I'm going to stick with the original plan of a private car driving me to Hong Kong which will get me to my first flight out. Thanks to my frequent flyer status, American has upgraded me from business to first class on my HKG to DFW flight. Once at DFW, I'll hang in the lounge until my flight back to O'hare. Once back to Chicago, another limo will take me home, dropping me off on Wednesday, 5 days after I was picked up. Since I shaved some time off my trip home by deviating, I'll be on the clock for almost 24 hours after I get home. For my trouble, I'll have about 30K more frequent flyer miles and my paycheck will be about $10K fatter (before taxes). Now the rest of the story........ About the time I'm landing in China after the 4.0 from Osaka, my family will be doing the Christmas morning routine. Being an almost empty nester, that's okay and gives someone with little ones a shot at being home. Hardly as noble as it sounds. I'm just a lazy MFer. Getting paid 10-grand to deadhead in style back and forth from Asia so that I can fly a single 4 hour flight is a fair trade off. That trip plus another for the first 6 days of Dec make up my month. So, that's one snap-shot of the Fedex 777 thing. Believe it or not, I've had better months, but this will definitely be a good one. The bad ones can be tough but with a little seniority, the good far outweighs the bad. Our bad doesn't hold a candle to the long days those of you still doing the job for big blue deal with. So, when you decide to bail, come on over - the water's fine. I usually get a paid commute via private car and first class international deadhead every month. There's lots of "Q" in the QOL and I definitely recommend it. Also, WTF is a "stewardess"?
  49. 12 points
    You're half right it would cost you at least $100K to sell your wife
  50. 12 points
    What wrong with the Air Force? We don't focus on readiness and warfighting anymore, mainly because we are not trained or educated enough for them. Air power projection is our core mission, and we've lost sight of that. Army and Marines will project ground power, Navy projects naval power, at the end of the day we have to present air power to the combatant commanders or we are all out of a job (not denigrating cyber, space, JTAC, TACP). Let's train/educate all airmen by sending all qualified Os and Es after commissioning and BMT through some kind of basic military flight training for 3-6 months (Nav, LM, FE). Non-flight physical folks get sent to ground ops training (airfield mgmt, amxs, intel, and etc...). Yes they won't be CMR, but they will have the fundamentals and understanding of what it takes to launch a sortie. With the rated and amxs shortage, they can *potentially* fill-in when the balloons goes up, more importantly this will educate why the Air Force exists and why not all AFSCs are created equal. Instead of focusing on bake sales and party planning, let's focus on readiness and the air power projection business. Soldiers and Marines all go through infantry training regardless of MOS, the sailors get trained on sea duty operations (firefighting, navigating and etc...). All airmen should have a basic understanding of how to support air operations regardless of AFSCs. The acquisitions community comes close by sending some of their officers through non-rated ops exchange programs. The 63As return back after one ops tour with a better understanding and appreciation of operational air force, as well as street cred when making decisions of a MWS acquisitions program. Yes sex assaults are bad, lookout for each other so we don't kill ourselves (on purpose or by accident), sleep with whichever sex you want behind closed (SCIF?) doors, build a home for the poor after work if you want to, those topics are not the reasons why the taxpayers are paying for our salary. We need to get back to combat readiness and the warfighting business.