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What's wrong with the Air Force?

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If Top Gun 2 generated buzz, then, of course, another in the genre will too...

 

12 O'clock Nigh

Scene 1:  Delta FO Harry Stovall, having parked his 787 at Heathrow, kills part of his 20 hour layover with a stroll down some shop streets near The City in London.

Suddenly, he spots a model of an F-15C in the window in a junk shop...cue harp music and wavy focus camera...

Scene 2: Then Captain Harry "Burner" Stovall is the reluctant wing exec and is slaving away at his desk awaiting the arrival of the new wing king after the previous one had been fired for boning SSgt Yummy Britches in the staff car.

The door bangs open and in walks Col Frank Savage, fresh off his Air Staff tour (prior to that he'd flown the Eagle for one tour at Eglin, then had a career of exec/school/exec/school/command, to the Air Staff and now here at RAF Archbury).

Stovall stands up to acknowledge the O-6.  Who immediately berates Stovall for having the fun meter morale patch, his flight cap visible in his leg pocket, and his zipper slightly below his name tag.

"Captain, I want to see the personnel folders of every pilot in this wing immediately."

Scene 3:  That evening in the Club bar, Stovall is at the bar trying to not badmouth the new commander as the bros gather 'round looking for gouge.

When in bursts Savage himself, proclaiming "This bar is closed.  All pilots will muster in the wing auditorium at 0700 tomorrow morning."

The crowd files out grumbling unintelligibly...

Scene 4:  The next morning, at 0700, the auditorium is called to attention and in strides Savage, his Chief, and Stovall.  

Savage ascends the stage, dramatically pulls the cord to the curtain covering the big board, to reveal...The Plan

"Gentlemen, effective immediately, every single one of you will reset your clock on all the ancillary CBTs the Air Force and DoD have mandated.  You will complete this no later than a week from today.  I will not tolerate sloppy uniforms or sloppy green dots."

Raising his hand the OG asks, "Sir, that will take nearly 70 hours even if we group take all the on-line tests and the like.  We are supposed to deploy for the Baltic Ops mission next week and had some LFEs scheduled with the Brits over the Wash."

"Col Cobb, if I want your opinion, I will give it to you.  That's all, gentlemen.  Dismissed."

Scene 5:

A week later:

"Stovall, why am I seeing all these 7-day opts?"

"Dunno, sir.  Here's mine..."

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On 11/22/2017 at 4:38 PM, Ram said:

Those Growler bros who drew the sky dick messed up in their message.

Right away, it should have been a post on their social media:  "To show solidarity with the Movember movement, we did our part to raise awareness for men's health."

BOOM - it's a movement.  Use the social welfare BS when it suits you.  At trial:  "WHAT?  YOU'RE AGAINST MEN'S HEALTH???  GENDERIST!!!"

 

9B9857AB-1780-4BB4-AAFC-2FA2CAEDF335.jpeg

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New AFSPC brown-noise solicitation message flying around.  Seem like appropriate use of a Patch.

#2) Aide to the Commander
- Estimated start date: Jun/Jul 18
- Desired rank: Capt/Maj
- Desired AFSC: Any
- Additional requirements: Weapons School graduate, SOS complete and on track for IDE

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On 12/3/2017 at 7:37 PM, brickhistory said:

If Top Gun 2 generated buzz, then, of course, another in the genre will too...

12 O'clock Nigh

Scene 3:  That evening in the Club bar, Stovall is at the bar...

You had me until I saw this line. Nobody so goes to a "club bar" anymore, so I quickly realized this is satire.

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New AFSPC brown-noise solicitation message flying around.  Seem like appropriate use of a Patch.
#2) Aide to the Commander
- Estimated start date: Jun/Jul 18
- Desired rank: Capt/Maj
- Desired AFSC: Any
- Additional requirements: Weapons School graduate, SOS complete and on track for IDE


At least they are coming out and saying what they want with the caveats.

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Informal survey:

Who is the most responsible out of the last 5 CSAF's for this rapid increase in decline? 

The CSAF is only one man and the AF is a huge fat bureaucracy that has plenty of bosses telling it how it has the wrong cover sheet for its TPS reports but ultimately if there is one person responsible for the overall strategic direction of the institution, it would be him.  

I don't lay everything on the CSAF but where did we really start to go off course?  Where did we miss the signal to change the institution that is structurally designed to be in garrison to one that is operational / expeditionary in nature (in terms of leadership selection, resource prioritization, long term strategy, short term nimbleness, etc...)

Edited by Clark Griswold

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Schwartz.

Back with the emphasis on masters degrees, the TAMI-21 saga, Blues Monday, etc that devastated the force long term. The people that flourished during his reign and guidance now have serious placement and access in the actual decision making portions of the chain. 

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Schwartz.
Back with the emphasis on masters degrees, the TAMI-21 saga, Blues Monday, etc that devastated the force long term. The people that flourished during his reign and guidance now have serious placement and access in the actual decision making portions of the chain. 

This, this, this. And then every single CSAF after him who didn’t immediately unfvck what he fvcked. I’m still trying to figure out how we still have the Schwartz PT test when everyone knew it was a lazy attempt at force shaping.

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Moseley.  Openly said he chose hardware over people.  No other services will you hear that philosophy.  People is the most important asset in any organization.


Not arguing Raptor's capabilities, but it wasn't an either or problem. Didn't want to rock the boat too much. Still got fired at the end.

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Schwartz for sure for the reasons already mentioned plus the first RIF that got rid of good dudes that wanted to stay right after they didn't let anyone leave during VSP. He was the worst.

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I think Moseley. 2005-2008. 

 

It's when the Deid, at its peak, went full retard. It's when the Airmans Creed was invented, Chiefs finally outruled everyone, and the invention of "everyone is a warrior." He said we need to cut people to pay for hardware, had a ton of scandals, and was finally fired for nuclear shenanigans.  Masters degrees came back from Gen Jumper, and the Generals, with the economy in the shits and the support of Moseley, said "if you don't like it, get out." Oh, and UPT Direct to RPAs.

 

Schwartz was a close second with the nuclear enterprise "changes", Fitness test Salem witch trials, and Blues Monday. He could have undone the damage that Mosely did, but instead double downed on the policies at the Deid, making him a close second. He could have ended the reign of fighter pilot CSAFs, but he did such a piss poor job that the next guy was back to the status quo.  

 

Welsh had the unfortunate job of cleaning up everyone elses scandals and a terrible SECAF. Oh well, what could have been.

 

Edited by xaarman
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11 hours ago, xaarman said:

I think Moseley. 2005-2008. 

It's when the Deid, at its peak, went full retard. It's when the Airmans Creed was invented, Chiefs finally outruled everyone, and the invention of "everyone is a warrior." He said we need to cut people to pay for hardware, had a ton of scandals, and was finally fired for nuclear shenanigans.  Masters degrees came back from Gen Jumper, and the Generals, with the economy in the shits and the support of Moseley, said "if you don't like it, get out." Oh, and UPT Direct to RPAs.

Schwartz was a close second with the nuclear enterprise "changes", Fitness test Salem witch trials, and Blues Monday. He could have undone the damage that Mosely did, but instead double downed on the policies at the Deid, making him a close second. He could have ended the reign of fighter pilot CSAFs, but he did such a piss poor job that the next guy was back to the status quo.  

Welsh had the unfortunate job of cleaning up everyone elses scandals and a terrible SECAF. Oh well, what could have been.

Ditto on Moseley also.  

I remember the 45k Airman cut to buy the Raptor, the beginning of PT uniforms / testing and basically the descent into madness also.

He was not the worst but the point at which it really started to go off the rails.

At some point around 2004, it should have been realized we were in new territory and the AF needed a fundamental change as we didn't have the resources to keep doing things as they always had been done and handle the new missions, pace of ops, etc... and shift with the times.  Easy to say with 10+ years of hindsight but that's why we pay them the big bucks, to have a forward looking vision...

Edited by Clark Griswold
spelling

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I also think Moseley.  He proudly prioritized hardware over humans, stiff armed RPAs and all things GWOT when it was obvious we weren't getting an easy win & needed to invest in the war.  Mostly though, by his obstinacy and subsequent firing he enabled the takeover of Schwartz who embodied all things weak and pathetic about our service.

That said, honorable mention goes to Welsh for the false hope things would improve followed by his double down on bureaucratic stupid while collapse accelerated.

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Related question to the CSAF sidebar and overall topic of the thread - is Moseley just a stand in for the generic Fighter General and that’s the problem?
Schwartz was not an 11F and only pushed the throttles up on the way to point insanity so I believe that less but others have mentioned that idea before (fighter guy always in charge) - is it a problem of “the same guy” is always in charge ?

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Nope.  Like promotes like.  So to get into the club, 99.69% of the time only those that are like me - think like me, act like me, respond like me - are going to get into the club.

I do not blame just CSAF.  Every single 3 or 4 star for the last, at least, 15 years who wasn't willing to fall on his/her sword and say "Enough!" bears responsibility. I am unaware of any such examples.

Congress writes the checks.  They need to be told to whom to write those checks.  "We got this" is not always the right answer, but giving such will cost a few corporate board memberships or media talking skull opportunities.

We, collectively, also bear some of the blame.  How many at the lower echelons were willing to publicly fall on our swords?  A few, but not enough to make the GOs get uncomfortable until the iceberg had already ripped the gash (sts) down the length of the ship.

Or was it just easier to bail and go airlines?  Or to whatever wasn't a dysfunctional Big Blue.

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I think the blame goes to the administration, who sets the overall atmosphere through the SECDEF and secretaries that are put in place.  The chiefs are supposed to work with the secretaries to represent and advocate for the men and women in uniform and shield us from political "crap."  But it appears the past few CSAFs failed spectacularly at their job.  The previous round of service chiefs and secretaries have got to be the worst collection of services managers ever assembled to date.  D James, R Mabus, E Fanning, J Amos and M Welsh.

Welsh deserves plenty of blame but he was also dealing with James and the NCR politics.  Perhaps should have resigned in protest?

Moseley started the downward spiral, kudos to him for standing firm on the raptors (even if it's standing on the back of the airmen), but he really got fired by Gates (actually not bad SECDEF) for not providing enough tactical support.  The nuke and the Nellis scandals just added gasoline to the fire.

Edited by panchbarnes
Got one of the names wrong. Apology to the Devil Dogs.

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3 hours ago, brickhistory said:

... Every single 3 or 4 star for the last, at least, 15 years who wasn't willing to fall on his/her sword and say "Enough!" bears responsibility. I am unaware of any such examples.

Congress writes the checks.  They need to be told to whom to write those checks.  "We got this" is not always the right answer, but giving such will cost a few corporate board memberships or media talking skull opportunities.

We, collectively, also bear some of the blame.  How many at the lower echelons were willing to publicly fall on our swords?  A few, but not enough to make the GOs get uncomfortable until the iceberg had already ripped the gash (sts) down the length of the ship.

Or was it just easier to bail and go airlines?  Or to whatever wasn't a dysfunctional Big Blue.

Good words.

The decline didn't happen overnight and not due to action / inaction of one but of many and over many years.

There's always that problem, do I stand and fight probably to die (metaphorically) or withdraw and live to fight another day?  Quit and make a statement with my feet or try to fix from the inside?  Principle or Rationalization?

No one answer is always right except "it depends" and is only is dependent on the individual having the moral character to ask themselves that question.

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4 hours ago, Clark Griswold said:

Good words.

The decline didn't happen overnight and not due to action / inaction of one but of many and over many years.

There's always that problem, do I stand and fight probably to die (metaphorically) or withdraw and live to fight another day?  Quit and make a statement with my feet or try to fix from the inside?  Principle or Rationalization?

No one answer is always right except "it depends" and is only is dependent on the individual having the moral character to ask themselves that question.

dare i say "pick your battles?"

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1 hour ago, BashiChuni said:

dare i say "pick your battles?"

Which, apparently, meant never fighting by past leadership all along the line.

 

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Where’s Chang?  I’d love to hear his opinion on this...

Edited by FUSEPLUG
Did I really just say that?!
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On 12/10/2017 at 12:07 PM, brickhistory said:

Nope.  Like promotes like.  So to get into the club, 99.69% of the time only those that are like me - think like me, act like me, respond like me - are going to get into the club.

I do not blame just CSAF.  Every single 3 or 4 star for the last, at least, 15 years who wasn't willing to fall on his/her sword and say "Enough!" bears responsibility. I am unaware of any such examples.

Congress writes the checks.  They need to be told to whom to write those checks.  "We got this" is not always the right answer, but giving such will cost a few corporate board memberships or media talking skull opportunities.

We, collectively, also bear some of the blame.  How many at the lower echelons were willing to publicly fall on our swords?  A few, but not enough to make the GOs get uncomfortable until the iceberg had already ripped the gash (sts) down the length of the ship.

Or was it just easier to bail and go airlines?  Or to whatever wasn't a dysfunctional Big Blue.

This isn't Milgram's Experiment. Everyone who doesn't speak up or is afraid of showing red on a slide guilty of collusion. We supposedly teach that the lowest Airman or Lt can call safety in the air, because that can get us killed. If we practiced what we preach in the air on the ground, and promoted accordingly, we'd fix most of our problems.

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