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39 minutes ago, Sua Sponte said:

When I was a -135 FTU instructor, we’d go to Luke once a month, for a week, and refuel all the B-Course studs day and night. This was easier to schedule due to being in AETC (and not having to deal with TACC). Is this not a thing anymore?

Not in the 2.69 years I’ve been at Luke, but it sounds like it worked well and I wish they would bring it back.  Get a bunch of reps in a short time period, because seeing something multiple times is good, but seeing it multiple times in rapid succession is even better.  
 

This could especially be helpful for Holloman - us at Luke at least have the 161st Guard bubbas out of PHX that we can work with pretty easily (our normal AR tracks are also their local sorties).  Not to say we haven’t graduated a student without them ever seeing a tanker, but it’s rare...

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I hear you but still...Where was the DO?  Perhaps another needless soapbox rant but honestly I have thought about this incident 100 times over the past few days and how many different people fail

B courses have been cut down for years, and yes, the general product has lagged behind preceding years. Lots of kicking the can down the road to the CAF. So, it’s the entire AETC pipeline that’s a pro

Ruh roh. Not a flattering look for the ACES seat. No way even the most experienced driver is going to have the presence of mind and the in-the-blind dexterity to pull the manual override in a ground l

On 11/11/2020 at 9:18 PM, ThreeHoler said:

KC-10s are in need of night fighters all the time. I’ll see if our barrel can reach out to yours.


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How is there always a shortage of tankers at LFE vuls? I swear the -135 patches won’t graduate unless they gnat’s ass the fuel to the pound. Then someone’s TCAS breaks and the whole thing is a wreck.

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How is there always a shortage of tankers at LFE vuls? I swear the -135 patches won’t graduate unless they gnat’s ass the fuel to the pound. Then someone’s TCAS breaks and the whole thing is a wreck.


My best guess is tanker units stopped shopping for things with sequestration...fly shorter sorties closer to home (see either 7BAx2 or 777 only). Then OSTs forgot they’re supposed to be managing training for the wing (forecasting training needs). Now, OSTs and OSOs have lost the corporate knowledge to seek out the training we need and units either get scraps or you see “hookups” begged for on Facebook.

Funny thing is our training requirements haven’t increased...we just forgot how to do what we used to do.
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On 11/11/2020 at 10:05 PM, Sua Sponte said:

When I was a -135 FTU instructor, we’d go to Luke once a month, for a week, and refuel all the B-Course studs day and night. This was easier to schedule due to being in AETC (and not having to deal with TACC). Is this not a thing anymore?

I heard they started doing this again to Eglin recently.  The 46 should be getting approval to refuel 16s and 35s soon so hopefully there will be more AETC business efforts.   

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A bit of a drift from the Shaw crash topic, but still relevant.

My time at Travis thankfully ended 6 years ago, but I remember a lot of wasted effort primarily designed to lick Travis’s own balls. 4x KC-10s would launch in both the morning and evening, all flying 5 hour sorties and burning 100k lbs of gas to maintain C-17 and C-5 AR currency. Entire AR tracks would be consumed by non-current reservists bobbling around in pre-contact for an hour solely for the extremely unlikely chance that someone would ask a C-5 (or a non-airdrop C-17) to do AR operationally.

At the same time, mission commanders at LFEs are struggling to figure out fallout plans in case 1 of the half-full -135s no-shows. God forbid if the only one left is drogue-only. The idea that half of D$N night or NH may have to RTB early for lack of available airborne fuel is downright shameful. And now, reading that West Coast fighter units and FTUs don’t have enough tanker availability to maintain basic fighter AR quals, it’s even more apparent that the priorities are out of whack.

Maybe it’s all fixed now, it’s been a while.

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Anybody been at Klamath lately? Back in 2011 timeframe we got tankers all the time. I bet I tanked 15 times up there. Fight tank fights were pretty common in all phases of the syllabus. I can’t believe there wouldn’t be tons of availability at Luke with a collocated tanker unit. Unless that’s what was referenced earlier.

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On 11/11/2020 at 10:48 PM, Motofalcon said:

Not in the 2.69 years I’ve been at Luke, but it sounds like it worked well and I wish they would bring it back.  Get a bunch of reps in a short time period, because seeing something multiple times is good, but seeing it multiple times in rapid succession is even better.  
 

This could especially be helpful for Holloman - us at Luke at least have the 161st Guard bubbas out of PHX that we can work with pretty easily (our normal AR tracks are also their local sorties).  Not to say we haven’t graduated a student without them ever seeing a tanker, but it’s rare...

Can y’all not get a Business Effort tanker at some points during your syllabus?

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Fairchild has been doing business efforts recently trying to help out the units dying for currency. We love BEs because it keeps us away from flying around the flagpole day in and day out. We almost did one at Ellsworth but got hit with covid restrictions and had to help them from home station. I'd love to help out some units on the east coast. Charleston would be dope since it's home lol

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The latest from Maj Gen Wills: 

 

 

MAF Heroes,
Below is a slightly edited version of a post I added to a CAF forum that I’m also part of.  It followed a thread that commented on the release of one of the recent  AIBs.  Quite a bit of it is specific to the CAF, but I think the main points I’m trying to make apply to all of us, especially the shameless plug for our instructors.  If you haven’t read the safety reports from the past few accidents in full, I highly recommend it. There’s something there for all of us, and it isn’t all what you think. 
Offered for your consideration and in the intent of this forum.
—————————
Previous Post: 

Warriors, I’d like to add a couple of points to the recent thread regarding the recent mishap (s).  First, if you haven’t had the chance to read the actual safety reports, I highly recommend it - there’s a lot there for us to collectively consider in a lot of areas.

Some have asked “does the leadership know?” The answer is yes - declining experience levels and training cuts are at the forefront of our discussions, and specifically on the agenda going in to aircrew summit.  I won’t speak for my ACC teammates, but they’re working on plans to address the experience levels in ACC.  COMAETC and COMACC met today and this was at the top of the list.  COMACC emphasized that this is an enterprise wide problem and it will require an enterprise wide solution. 

We’ve had some great discussions here about risk.  If you’re wondering if the leadership knows we’ve accepted increased risk, the answer is yes.  We also know that the Generals are the ones who accept it and you’re the ones who have to live with it.  This is the usual arrangement, as unsatisfying as it is to all of us.  

Overall, the entire system is fundamentally out of balance, and fixes in one area tend to exacerbate problems in another. It’s an enterprise problem and it’s a little like squeezing a balloon. The previous COMACC described it as a ‘wicked problem’ - meaning you can’t work discrete elements of the problem, you have to work all of it at once.

There’s no magic solution.  We’re trying to make pilot training better, but we can’t make it longer.  There’s a lot more to this story and I’m happy to field questions on this front. Keep in mind that there is virtually zero CAF experience at UPT and it’s been this way for a long time. The MAF has single-handedly propped up pilot training for at least 10 years and we owe them a lot. 

It’s also true that ACC + AETC deliberately adjusted FTU length and fighter tour lengths to restore a healthy flow from UPT to FTU to Ops units and back to white jets and institutional requirements.  That change (and the syllabus) was coordinated, but it apparently wasn’t communicated across the MAJCOMs in an enduring way.  As the syllabus owner for a lot of these programs,  I’ll take the spear for that, and it won’t happen again. We have syllabus conferences coming up in for the F-16 and F-35; my pledge is that you’ll get a coordinated worldwide message going into and coming out of each AETC FTU syllabus conference that lays out what we’re collectively building and what it looks like.  You’ll also get a front page of the syllabus that clearly lays out the aim of the syllabus and the kind of wingman it will produce. You don’t have to like it, but you’ll at least have the intent in black and white.  Sneak preview - COMACC intent remains “The “B” in B-Course stands for Basic.  We need to focus on the basics and ensure we’re teaching folks to do the ordinary things extraordinarily well.” B courses will remain ~6-7 months long.

 Regarding AAR at FTU, we’ve made changes at the AETC FTUs to ensure we don’t graduate anyone without at least Day AAR complete. Our tanker teams are outstanding but we all know that scheduling is a challenge. It would be unrealistic to say that no B courser will ever graduate FTU without AAR again, though both ACC and AETC are working hard to prevent it.  FYSA, our team at Altus is sending a business effort tanker once a month to where it’s needed - we’ve had 3 thus far to Eglin to support the F-22 and F-35 FTUs. We’re also trying to get more out and backs from Altus to HMN to support. 

Shameless plug: Hats off to the FTU IPs out there.  Our FTU heroes are working overtime to  provide you with the wingmen you need. They’re being pulled in both directions - adjust to a less experienced input and provide a more capable output — it’s a tough task and I’m proud of those of you who are making it happen.  All of this is made more difficult by generally low FTU manning and will get harder with some of the fleet challenges we’re going to be seeing. Bottom line: FTU is tough duty and our teams are doing great work with a mighty challenge.

We’re going to be in a period of declining experience levels for some time. We can argue about how we got here, but we’re here.

That said, what are WE going to do about this?  

One thing we should all agree on right away: let’s stop saying our new pilots “suck.”  It’s probably closer to true to say that in most cases they’ve just had less training than you did.  Put yourself in their shoes. Through no fault of their own, they went through the programs at a time of tremendous turbulence and change.  The syllabus is one piece of the puzzle. Constant wash backs, fleet challenges, breaks in training and finally COVID means that their continuity in training was generally awful.  Now is the time to think about what’s required to get them to the level they need to be. Most of us weren’t born on Mount Olympus...somebody helped you get where you’re at today.  It’s our turn to pay it forward, and at the end of the day, they’re  wearing our patch...how are we going to make them better?  

The second recommendation is a little closer to home.  We say we’re fighter pilots...fighter pilots are supposed to be able to ask hard questions of themselves, not just of other people. Are we asking truly hard questions?  Do we have a culture problem in addition to an experience problem? Are we paying lip service to ORM or are we really making the tough calls? Are we disciplined in execution, or have we let our own standards drop? Are we so empowered that nobody feels the need to know the rules or follow the rules?  Another way of saying ‘declining experience’ is ‘fewer adults in the room.’  We’re in a period of the Air Force where if you’re asking if there’s an adult in the room, you’re the adult.  We’re all going to need to step up. 

It’s easy to blame the machine, and the machine deserves some blame.  The machine consumed me some time ago, so I’ll take all your spears on that front.  The MAJCOMs are working together to try and build a good way ahead with the pipeline.  All the easy answers are gone, so it’s going to be tough sledding for a while.  One thing I do know is that we’re failing if we don’t look in the mirror a little bit too.  It’s our Air Force and it’s going to take all of us working together.  This is a defining challenge and it’s not going away anytime soon.
————————
Bottom line: We can argue all day long about how we got here, but we’re here. What are WE going to do?

Edited by FLEA
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1 hour ago, Breckey said:

You could try and retain the experience instead of growing yourself out of the problem.

Then you’d probably have to admit to Congress that everything isn’t good, and also admit that the retention tools you have claimed are working aren’t actually adequate to request new options from Congress. 

Edited by SurelySerious
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2 minutes ago, SurelySerious said:

Then you’d probably have to admit to Congress that everything isn’t good, and also admit that the retention tools you have claimed are working aren’t actually adequate to request new options from Congress. 

Bingo.  It requires admitting to Congress that you do not, in fact, have everything under control.

Might even require *GASP* admitting there are other aircrew members besides just pilots.

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2 hours ago, Breckey said:

You could try and retain the experience instead of growing yourself out of the problem.

Ah, but he's not interested in introspective answers. Only outward deflection. Standard careerist tool. He demands integrity and self-deprecation, but is intolerant of any (of consequence) coming his way. Fact is the guy took the mantle where that pseudo-intellectual word-salad sophistry spewing B-15 illuminati Kwast left it , and has been running on the same snake oil ever since. Problem is they have full buy-in from the CSAF, and if you raise any criticism you're a Luddite and "part of the problem" to them.

Frankly, I'm surprised heads are not already rolling on a retaliatory/deflection basis at the OG and lower level at Shaw over the oversights on the ORM and supervisor-of-flying front highlighted in the AIB. Hell, they fired more people farther away from the epicenter during the 2007 Bent Spear, and nobody died nor did any glowsticks lose USAF custody at any point on that one.

Ironically, it's the MX practices of our AF that ultimately killed him, but since those critters have their 781 signatures and TCTO extension get outta jail free cards, once again the lessons won't be learned by the correct people. Talk about the mother of moral hazards.

Edited by hindsight2020
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So, leadership is telling us that they either still won't bring themselves to acknowledge that they are both the cause and the solution of the actual root problem, or they're so steeped in their own body odor that they *still* don't know it.

They're still focusing on treating the symptoms of the cancer rather than cutting out the cancer itself.

Brilliant, fellas.  Just brilliant.

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12 hours ago, FLEA said:

————————

Bottom line: We can argue all day long about how we got here, but we’re here. What are WE going to do?

Typical non-leader shit.  Correct question is, "What am I going to do."  I hate it when the GO's came to PME, or anywhere for that matter, and pulled the "what are you going to do to fix the USAF?"

Nothing Sir, even if I gave you the answer you wouldn't advocate for it, wouldn't do it, wouldn't give it an honest wag.

The only time I saw shit fixed was when the GO's put their foot down on the Col's/Lower-GO's necks and said what was going to happen.  Then the Capt/Maj that advocated for that thing got burned in promotion/assignment unless the GO also followed their career.  Guess how I know. 🙄

I really enjoyed how he laid out these organizations that changed the standards, not the leaders that put it into effect.  Funny, I don't think AETC's LOM said, "AETC lead x, y, z in UPT 2.0 development." I'm pretty sure they used his name.

Like this, "Gen Shelton, former AF Space Commander, FUCKED cyber development for years due to petty squabbles with other GO's and an inability to grasp how the world was changing with the new domain of warfare."

Edit to say  - Thanks for you guys letting me peak into your world and for doing the dangerous jobs.

Edited by 17D_guy
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3 hours ago, SocialD said:

Oh man, you should see all the felating of the General that is going on in that thread.  Sir sandwiches and kool-aid chugging of his every word.  

You can tell who’s in the guard and who’s on AD by the responses. One side doesn’t give a shit, and the other is worried about getting their next assignment changed to Laughlin if they dare speak against the man. Funny and sad at the same time.

Edited by brabus
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