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Everything posted by jice

  1. They’ll likely do the smart strategic thing that we weren’t willing to do: overtly exploit and destroy in pursuit of their interests. Democracy, human rights, individual freedoms? Who cares. They’re not going to evacuate the leader; if he want to live, he’ll figure out a way to pay his debts to the PRC. If unable, somebody else is holding the party’s hand in the cue. Their presence will be cheaper monetarily, and they’ll be more than willing to pay in a few hundred human lives per year for a Chinese bloc to the Persian Gulf. (“The Arabs barely use it anymore, strange… we’ve renamed it for our good friends”)
  2. “Hi Afghanistan, great to hear from you! Yeah! Those long range SAMs? Remember? That was part of the deal. They’re for your protection. You won’t even notice them as they drive through on your nice new highways to help “protect” you from aggressors in the Arabian Gulf. Oh… Having trouble paying for the road? Don’t worry. You can keep it, just let us periodically plop some J-20s and H-20s at those nice long airfields you’ve got. We’ll even fix them up for you at almost no charge. Mineral extraction and export rights in perpetuity should do the trick. Good, good. Well, nice talking to you… Just give us a call on the 5G network we’ve installed if there’s anything else you need. We’ll probably have something in mind for you already; funny how that works. Oh, by the way, have you heard about how great Beidou is? No. Sorry, we’ve got dinner plans in South America tonight, but maybe tennis in Malaysia next week?”
  3. Well… if the people in the military were obese children, I imagine we’d have been giving them lawful orders to lose weight and age.
  4. Let’s not kid ourselves thinking that the government has EITHER the risk to individual or the risk to people outside the military in mind. (though! this is a fantastic PR line we should 100% adopt… “US Air Force, taking shots to keep you safe [clip of loading missiles, clip of AMRAAM leaving the rail, clip of drone spear, clip of 80% of some nonner’s work day getting a 15 second shot]…. The risk we’re avoiding by making vaccination mandatory is risk to the unit’s ability to operate world-wide outside a “break glass, COVID-positive superpower coming through” scenario. As long as COVID is the dominant issue in a region, our ability to operate is degraded for as long as we allow individual choice on the matter.
  5. I’ve never understood the reluctance to use medicine to improve performance. If I have an infection that makes me DNIF, I take antibiotics. If I have a sleep schedule that needs to be shifted to operate safely, I take ambien. Need to be awake? Go pills. (Edit to be clear for OSI: I’m describing the ideal, not what I do or current practice. Also to be clear for OSI: get fvcked.) You’re asking me to strap into a fuel-laden tube, filled with fire but balk at altering body chemistry? Thanks Nancy. Smarter, stronger, and better at our job… of killing and not getting killed. Give us the pills. Can you imagine how great the MPF could be if we gave them Dex and locked them in for 12 hour days twice a month?
  6. Anybody in the know: What’s the stated purpose of winging after phase II if they’re just going to complete phase III? The optimist in me thinks there must be a reason… right? Right? Does the training commitment still start post-winging? If so we’re buying 4-6 fewer useful months of indentured servitude. If not, this is (on its face at least) a long-term stupid-button solution for boosting 11X numbers on paper.
  7. Serious question: is there a labor economist who works for the Air Force on these things? “How much do we pay to get X result” given a set of circumstances, is a pretty mature field of study. Where do they sit? Why don’t we hear from them?
  8. Very interested in this. I’m not an expert, and from the cheap seats it is definitely striking that the standard in court as I understand Graham (not an expert or lawyer) is narrowly constrained to the moment force was used. There seems to be lots of room for failures leading up to that moment, which is troubling when we’re talking about American citizens. What do you recommend I read? What insight would you be willing to share? I’m not willing to go as far as to say that an officer must be right IN FACT when using deadly force, else face murder charges, but as [I understand] it stands right now they can be very very wrong and not pay for their mistake in the same way that an armed citizen would. Help me understand what I don’t know.
  9. The crossflow game is a bit like trying to get out of a speeding ticket... your request/argument starts the conversation, but in the end doesn’t matter much Luck, timing, and having folks who want to see you get there (luck). In that order.
  10. A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away... Past performance is no guarantee of future results; read your prospectus carefully.
  11. That’s from the SASC report; important context but not the actual law. The report goes on to say something to the effect of ‘don’t forget about the guard!’ in the section you quoted. Elsewhere in the SASC report, the committee expresses concerns over the rapid acquisition model and AFSOC/SOCOM’s ability to support. In the NDAA itself (section somewhere between 130 and 150?), there’s a prohibition on the USAF from procuring Armed Overwatch through 2023 and SOCOM through 2021. So, money where the mouth is = $0 this year A bit difficult to determine the intent and long game. Would love to chat with anybody truly in the know via PM.
  12. I mean, there was that whole deal from 1861-1865.
  13. Ha! Dude, that’s totally fair. Revision: I just thought we were classier dickheads.
  14. Yeah bros, I just thought we were better than that. Copy your rights to be dickheads. Still makes you dickheads. Call me a Pu$$y all you want and fùck you too.
  15. I met somebody who looked like that at a party once. Turns out that person was an accomplished economist who redesigned the banking system of Monaco to accommodate crypto-currency. 8/10 would hang out with again, but I’m not interesting enough to get the invite. Millionaire many times over. Their partner also looked like that... and was a total mess. Is there more context here? Is BO.net a place we go now to make fun of people for how they look and the t-shirts they wear? That’s some high-school lunch room bullsh1t. I think most here would be happy to engage in a discussion of “black trans lives matter” (and most would likely agree with what I’m assuming you think about it). I’d also be disappointed if this has become an acceptable place to just be plain mean to somebody in a random photo.
  16. You’re right. There is absolutely a lack of knowledge about the long term effects of a COVID-19 vaccine. There is also the same lack of knowledge about COVID-19. The risks are not the same, not equal, and not currently knowable. I’m sure those who developed the vaccine could tell you why [they’re reasonably sure] the vaccine is safe. Would you trade 4 years of economic ruin and decreased life expectancy to call them on it?
  17. Ah yes, the old “if you recognize the impending dumpster fire we’ll pay you to leave” trick. Sun Tzu and Clausewitz were both huge advocates. Check and mate.
  18. [Last post from me in this derail, I really do appreciate the contrasting view and recognize that it’s an unpalatable and unpopular view]: We don’t have to actively threaten now with a massive buildup; a long term presence is the threat. Well aware that the current posture doesn’t provide options in a peer threat war. But! When we leave, Beijing will be there ($50 says Xi or his successor shows up for a high profile visit within 24 months after the last US troops are out) and they’ll have zero concerns about immediate instability. They will be looking 50 years down the [belt and] road and won’t harbor any illusions of helping the people or government of Afghanistan. (Except as required to manipulate the people and government of Afghanistan). Not leaving means we tell China that we recognize their game and aren’t going to let them walk East and west simultaneously. Here’s a picture of the Shanghai Cooperation organization. Members in Green, Observers in Blue (Afghanistan included). It isn’t getting any smaller. It contains most of the people on earth and by 2040, potentially most of the GDP on earth.
  19. (Funny you should say that; lots of folks saying the Chinese play go while we play chess). The Chinese know we’re all more familiar with chess than go. They’re playing a very different game. I’d say that if it forces the adversary to consider a wholly different axis than the one they’ve been absolutely dominating (the Western Pacific) that it isn’t a waste. They are clearly facing East WRT the US, currently and aspirationally. No (though we’ve likely all already played that game before). I’m saying that ceding influence and control in the ‘Stans forces us to look at China from the direction they’d like us to see them from. I’m not saying that we need to continue combat operations in Afghanistan at all. I’m saying that the pressing problem of our time is a rising China. We should make decisions based on what we need in 2040, not what would have been prudent in 2003. No disagreement with the first point here. Losing people senselessly is a horrible thing. Again, not advocating for continued combat operations or any aspiration of fixing Afghanistan. Fock ‘em... I just need to be able to plop aircraft, weapons, tanks, tankers, and Americans with Rifles in a place that lets me get to China’s western frontier quickly. If we’re doing distributed basing in your country from MOLs in Afghanistan, your pacific A2AD becomes a neat prize at the end of the war. Unpopular, I know, but being in Afghanistan doesn’t have to be about Afghanistan.
  20. I think anybody who grew up playing Go would disagree.
  21. I understand the sentiment, but is having an enduring presence in an “unconquerable” land that borders China in the West worth (some) blood and treasure? Maybe even some embarrassment in negotiations?
  22. Had a contrasting experience. Learned a lot about the folks I work with. Never thought about a lot of what was discussed. A number of people brought to tears with a significantly poignant story. Overheard one of the staunch “the best way to end this problem is not to discuss it” people tell the person who organized the training “thanks, I’m glad we had this talk; I think I need to listen more.” We didn’t have a 100% talking rule and attendance/tracking was intentionally obfuscated... and by that I mean we definitely had 100% attendance to meet the mandate.
  23. Totally agree with you. I’m skeptical of the rationale that’s being repeated in this thread re: the justification behind an “America Class.” No offense intended to student pilots, but has anybody in a position to speak to the decisionmakers’ rationale provided insight? “Checking washout rates” seems like a massive misunderstanding of social science and statistics or something coercive with subversively racist intent. (I have faith the latter isn’t the case and hope the former isn’t either... though “no class As for X years!... don’t notice all the Bs and Cs” doesn’t build confidence.) In any case, @brabus’s comment is a perfect reason that we shouldn’t let anybody (to include the young guns at work) see us roll our eyes at the seemingly clumsy and overtly progressive “first all XYZ ABC” stories. Those are exactly the reactions that give people confidence in saying “it’s going to be harder for you; don’t bother.” The only ones with actual SA are us.
  24. @12xu2a3x3 Data is ~6 years old; take it for what it’s worth. Wichita Falls has no shortage of old, kind of shitty, but super cheap apartments in the old downtown area (12 minutes to base). You could pick one up for less than $700 a month back in 2014. Some for less. It’s also the closest piece of civilization to some extraction operations (though not as booming as Midland/Odessa can be when the price of oil goes up), so long-term rentals at campgrounds are fairly common. (Good luck buying a camper at the moment though; COVID has made that market go crazy.) If you want to commute, having a place in WF is doable on a budget, and you could probably work the schedule so that you can spend one or two weeknights at home regularly during the week.
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