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(Daily Mail)   US Air Force facing a problem that fighter jocks would rather play in a basement. Oh and something about a $225k signing bonus for a 9 year extension   (dailymail.co.uk) divider line 83
    More: Interesting, U.S. Air Force, United States, USS George H.W. Bush, F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, Wired for War, combat aircraft, Peter W. Singer, Andersen Air Force Base  
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12305 clicks; posted to Main » on 23 Jul 2013 at 7:07 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



83 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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2013-07-23 07:10:38 AM
I'd sign up again in a heartbeat if not for what happened over Macho Grande.
 
2013-07-23 07:12:32 AM

AverageAmericanGuy: I'd sign up again in a heartbeat if not for what happened over Macho Grande.


Just ask George Zip.
 
2013-07-23 07:13:43 AM

AverageAmericanGuy: I'd sign up again in a heartbeat if not for what happened over Macho Grande.


Over Macho Grande?
 
2013-07-23 07:13:52 AM

AverageAmericanGuy: I'd sign up again in a heartbeat if not for what happened over Macho Grande.


I thought nobody could get over Macho Grande ?
 
2013-07-23 07:14:41 AM

YodaBlues: AverageAmericanGuy: I'd sign up again in a heartbeat if not for what happened over Macho Grande.

Over Macho Grande?


No. I don't think I'll ever get over Macho Grande.
 
2013-07-23 07:15:20 AM
Is it really a signing bonus if it is paid out over the 9 years?
 
2013-07-23 07:18:31 AM
How much does it cost to train a pilot and get them to competent levels?  I imagine the signing bonus is super cheap since I think decade ago they said it cost at least 1 million just to send a pilot to flight school.
 
2013-07-23 07:18:34 AM
I wonder how much of this is related to BOB and his policies related to the military.
 
2013-07-23 07:19:21 AM
How long before I can enlist to be a drone pilot from home?
I'll even pay for the highest tier internet TWC has.
/you know it would be fun
 
2013-07-23 07:20:40 AM
It looks like the sequester is working or they wouldn't have that type of money to throw around.

//I keed, they always have that much money to throw around.
 
2013-07-23 07:20:45 AM

FullMetalPanda: How much does it cost to train a pilot and get them to competent levels?  I imagine the signing bonus is super cheap since I think decade ago they said it cost at least 1 million just to send a pilot to flight school.


About $3mil per
 
2013-07-23 07:20:54 AM

Brick-House: I wonder how much of this is related to BOB and his policies related to the military.


That BOB's a riot.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fVyVIsvQoaE
 
2013-07-23 07:23:37 AM
Ah the Chair Force - not happy unless they are sitting in a shipping container stateside shooting missiles at people with towels on their head
 
2013-07-23 07:25:40 AM
I'll fly one.  Sadly...I'm too old and too blind to be a fighter pilot.  Had I better eyesight I'd have signed up in high school.
 
2013-07-23 07:26:28 AM
I thought drone pilots weren't real pilots, or something.
 
2013-07-23 07:32:01 AM

Molavian: I thought drone pilots weren't real pilots, or something.


They're not, but they get paid good money, have no loss of life threat, can get coffee and bathroom breaks during long sorties, can work much closer to home, and have a overall less stressful job.
It's no wonder many pilots are moving.
 
2013-07-23 07:32:26 AM
sharetv.org

giggity
 
2013-07-23 07:34:58 AM

Molavian: I thought drone pilots weren't real pilots, or something.


I think they should put the medal on the drone. It's taking all the risks.
 
2013-07-23 07:38:08 AM
I think the issue is emblematic of a culture shift in the air force: The old guard which promotes the lone wolf fighter jock with all of the mystique and machismo that go with it. On the other side: the new guard which has figured out that if you take a pass on the mystique and machismo you get to go home at the end of your shift and see your wife and kids on a regular basis.

Drones aren't sexy, but they get the job done, the pilot survives to fight again if he gets shot down, the drone is cheaper to replace and the pilot gets to go home at the end of his shift. And the air force wonders why they are having trouble retaining pilots for fighter jock roles?
 
2013-07-23 07:41:52 AM

skankboy: Is it really a signing bonus if it is paid out over the 9 years?


It's not paid out over 9 years. It's a $25K signing bonus, paid every year to sign up for another year, over that period. Each year, the pilots have the option of signing for the next year - and, if they do, they get a signing bonus.
 
2013-07-23 07:43:00 AM
The good old Air Farce. I like to make fun of them, but they do have the benefit of sending the zeros into combat while the enlisted stay home and sleep with their wives someone's wife.

img.photobucket.com
 
2013-07-23 07:43:24 AM

Elfich: I think the issue is emblematic of a culture shift in the air force: The old guard which promotes the lone wolf fighter jock with all of the mystique and machismo that go with it. On the other side: the new guard which has figured out that if you take a pass on the mystique and machismo you get to go home at the end of your shift and see your wife and kids on a regular basis.

Drones aren't sexy, but they get the job done, the pilot survives to fight again if he gets shot down, the drone is cheaper to replace and the pilot gets to go home at the end of his shift. And the air force wonders why they are having trouble retaining pilots for fighter jock roles?


Obviously a Top Gun sequel is needed.  Somebody call up Val Kilmer and have the special effects team standing by to greenscreen him into a flightsuit.
 
2013-07-23 07:46:32 AM

Koodz: Elfich: I think the issue is emblematic of a culture shift in the air force: The old guard which promotes the lone wolf fighter jock with all of the mystique and machismo that go with it. On the other side: the new guard which has figured out that if you take a pass on the mystique and machismo you get to go home at the end of your shift and see your wife and kids on a regular basis.

Drones aren't sexy, but they get the job done, the pilot survives to fight again if he gets shot down, the drone is cheaper to replace and the pilot gets to go home at the end of his shift. And the air force wonders why they are having trouble retaining pilots for fighter jock roles?

Obviously a Top Gun sequel is needed.  Somebody call up Val Kilmer and have the special effects team standing by to greenscreen him into a flightsuit.


Did he get fat again?
 
2013-07-23 07:53:26 AM

ChaosStar: Did he get fat again?


Val Kilmer's weight bothers me a little, as did his wooden acting in Spartan.  He redeemed himself as Gay Perry in Kiss Kiss Bang Bang.  But the thing that really puts me off of him is from his role in Heat.  He wakes up in De Niro's minimalist house, looking as rough as a badger's arse, and during the scene you can see that his right (I think) elbow has a gigantic lump/boil/buboe on it.  What. The. Fark. Is. That?
 
2013-07-23 08:06:02 AM

Petit_Merdeux: The good old Air Farce. I like to make fun of them, but they do have the benefit of sending the zeros into combat while the enlisted stay home and sleep with their wives someone's wife.

[img.photobucket.com image 450x614]


I get a kick out of this every time it's posted, but especially since my sister is Army (35G, IIRC) currently flying on J-STARS out of Qatar.

/22 aboard, including 2 full-birds, and there's apparently no coffee maker - how is THAT possible?
 
2013-07-23 08:06:48 AM

Elfich: Drones aren't sexy, but they get the job done, the pilot survives to fight again if he gets shot down, the drone is cheaper to replace and the pilot gets to go home at the end of his shift.


Also, do you think they have room to squeeze a bathroom into an F-16?
 
2013-07-23 08:07:48 AM
That really doesn't seem to be much considering how insanely smart, in shape and specialized these guys have to be. Add in the danger and extreme cost saving/human life benefits of using a fighter pilot over ground troops and one could say they are severely underpaid compared to what a civilian would make at those skill/usefulness levels.

They could just try to chill out on the whole war thing a bit though and maybe they wouldn't need as many.
 
2013-07-23 08:21:37 AM

The Envoy: ChaosStar: Did he get fat again?

Val Kilmer's weight bothers me a little, as did his wooden acting in Spartan.  He redeemed himself as Gay Perry in Kiss Kiss Bang Bang.  But the thing that really puts me off of him is from his role in Heat.  He wakes up in De Niro's minimalist house, looking as rough as a badger's arse, and during the scene you can see that his right (I think) elbow has a gigantic lump/boil/buboe on it.  What. The. Fark. Is. That?


Val Kilmer broke his arm while filming "The Doors" in 1991 when he performed a jump from the stage into the crowd and the stuntman failed to catch him. The injury has left Kilmer with an abnormal growth on his right elbow. Like you mentioned, the abnormal growth can be clearly seen many times in "Heat."
 
2013-07-23 08:22:29 AM
Top Gun is Navy...
 
2013-07-23 08:29:46 AM

ChaosStar: Molavian: I thought drone pilots weren't real pilots, or something.

They're not, but they get paid good money, have no loss of life threat, can get coffee and bathroom breaks during long sorties, can work much closer to home, and have a overall less stressful job.
It's no wonder many pilots are moving.


UAV pilots in the Air Force go through UPT just like any other aviator.

I had a buddy track select for UAV....he skipped out on ENJJFPT for them. Not sure why he did it but he's now sitting out in Vegas flying drones all day and gets to sleep in his bed at night.

With the budget and sequester I'm not surprised aviators aren't staying on. They're barely getting enough hours to stay current and are flying desks most of the time.

Another good buddy just got A-10s on drop night a few weeks ago. And a week later they announced cutbacks in the A-10 fleet. It sucks and he's not happy about it.
 
2013-07-23 08:30:11 AM
Any of the military's pilot training programs are difficult to get into...steep prerequisites for health, education, and passing their aptitude tests (including the ASVAB).    That's only to be accepted into the training programs...passing flight training is an entirely different matter.
 
2013-07-23 08:31:13 AM
When I was a ranger sniper sergeant in the core, jet jocks were paid according to rank and that's all.  It was supposedly a privilege and that was your "bonus".
 
2013-07-23 08:31:23 AM

slayer199: Any of the military's pilot training programs are difficult to get into...steep prerequisites for health, education, and passing their aptitude tests (including the ASVAB).    That's only to be accepted into the training programs...passing flight training is an entirely different matter.


There's always the Korean civilian pilot program.
 
2013-07-23 08:32:13 AM

Pangit: Top Gun is Navy...


I want to fly jets, sir!

Sell it to the Air Force, Mayo!
 
2013-07-23 08:34:33 AM
War bad.  Defense bad.  Military bad.

retention,  not so good..
 
2013-07-23 08:36:14 AM
Fighter pilots become fighter pilots to fight things. They want to kill stuff. To know that they are making a difference in the military and to have a visible impact in whatever sphere they operate in. Drones are getting ALL the missions. If someone is getting greased by the USAF, its either being done by a drone or an A-10/AC-130. And we dont have that many slots open for A-10's or AC-130's.

We've been at war for over a decade now, and the only guys bragging about killing Hajj at the O-club are UAV pilots. The Raptor pilots just sit there twirling their drinks feeling like the one guy who sat on the bench the whole game after a state championship.

Brief pilots all the time and this is the BS they tell me. That tooling around in an F16 knowing that youll spend almost a year not with your family and STILL not get to drop ordnance on people kinda sucks.
 
2013-07-23 08:37:13 AM

NutWrench: Molavian: I thought drone pilots weren't real pilots, or something.

I think they should put the medal on the drone. It's taking all the risks.


Look, if Chewbacca doesn't get a medal, then drones don't get medals.
 
2013-07-23 08:37:16 AM

Elfich: I think the issue is emblematic of a culture shift in the air force: The old guard which promotes the lone wolf fighter jock with all of the mystique and machismo that go with it. On the other side: the new guard which has figured out that if you take a pass on the mystique and machismo you get to go home at the end of your shift and see your wife and kids on a regular basis.


The article is all worried (yeah, I know, Daily Mail), but this as a good thing. The Air Force is still spending years and millions of dollars training up pilots who eventually fly drones anyway, while the Army is training enlisted guy in 23 weeks to do the same thing. There has to be a shift in the name of progress.
 
2013-07-23 08:38:38 AM
The Air Force has been forcing pilots in tot he drone program for the last 8 years, they are leaving their A/C because they want to.  This is typical AF mismanagement of personnel.  They always have too many of something, so they cut huge numbers, only to realize they cut way too many, so they jam a shiat ton through a pipeline, only to realize they jammed way to many through, so they cut a shiat ton.....its cycles every few years.  They just had a pool of pilots in 2009 that they were trying to downsize.
 
2013-07-23 08:42:41 AM
ChaosStar
Molavian: I thought drone pilots weren't real pilots, or something.

They're not, but they get paid good money, have no loss of life threat, can get coffee and bathroom breaks during long sorties, can work much closer to home, and have a overall less stressful job.
It's no wonder many pilots are moving.


Hey look, someone who doesn't know what they are talking about!
 
2013-07-23 08:43:07 AM

Subtle_Canary: That tooling around in an F16 knowing that youll spend almost a year not with your family and STILL not get to drop ordnance on people kinda sucks.


kinda like being a cop who never gets to shoot his weapon at anyone?
 
2013-07-23 08:47:58 AM

Disposable Rob: Elfich: I think the issue is emblematic of a culture shift in the air force: The old guard which promotes the lone wolf fighter jock with all of the mystique and machismo that go with it. On the other side: the new guard which has figured out that if you take a pass on the mystique and machismo you get to go home at the end of your shift and see your wife and kids on a regular basis.

The article is all worried (yeah, I know, Daily Mail), but this as a good thing. The Air Force is still spending years and millions of dollars training up pilots who eventually fly drones anyway, while the Army is training enlisted guy in 23 weeks to do the same thing. There has to be a shift in the name of progress.


i wonder, though, if a fully trained-up pilot could keep a drone in the air and complete its mission as stuff degrades due to weather and AAA, where a 23wk drone-only jock would toss it in as soon as anything goes wrong.
 
2013-07-23 08:50:28 AM
www.demotivationalposters.org

/ most wasteful branch of the military, BAR NONE
 
2013-07-23 08:51:12 AM
Good that pilots are weighing the risks and refusing the riskier job.  It's the first tiny step towards everyone refusing to have anything to do with killing people.  Next, the PTSD of drone work will drive people out of that.  Then the ground troops will say, "WTF am I  doing here, shooting and getting shot at so Halliburton's stockholders can get richer?"

Don't enlist, kids.  It's a deal with the Devil. If you're drafted, flee to Canada.
 
2013-07-23 08:52:43 AM

Pangit: Top Gun is Navy


Er, that too.
 
2013-07-23 08:56:32 AM

Brick-House: I wonder how much of this is related to BOB and his policies related to the military.


Don't mess with BOB

img.timeinc.net
 
2013-07-23 09:01:16 AM

Disposable Rob: Elfich: I think the issue is emblematic of a culture shift in the air force: The old guard which promotes the lone wolf fighter jock with all of the mystique and machismo that go with it. On the other side: the new guard which has figured out that if you take a pass on the mystique and machismo you get to go home at the end of your shift and see your wife and kids on a regular basis.

The article is all worried (yeah, I know, Daily Mail), but this as a good thing. The Air Force is still spending years and millions of dollars training up pilots who eventually fly drones anyway, while the Army is training enlisted guy in 23 weeks to do the same thing. There has to be a shift in the name of progress.


UAV operator used to be an enlisted AFSC back in the day when they were unproven and fighter jocks were scoffing at the idea of what to them were RC planes doing REAL piloting. Then we started dropping weapons from them and getting shiat done and the brass swooped down to take control of it. The culture of the USAF is that enlisted men are peons barely fit for the uniform they wear while any of the REAL jobs can only be done by a rated officer. An enlisted weather guy goes through 30 weeks of meteorology training, about 2 years of OWS forecaster training and experience, an additional 3 months of observers school and by the time he is reaching E-6 better have a BS in climatology and have at least another 2 specialist schools under his belt but the second a butter bar with wings tells him about how weather 'really works' he's expected to STFU and defer to his superior.

When the plane becomes a terrain feature the blame list normally follows
-Maintenance guys
-Life support guys
-weather guys
-bad luck
-
-
-
-
-
-maybe he was just a shiat pilot
 
2013-07-23 09:02:01 AM
Thanks Obama!
 
2013-07-23 09:04:05 AM
www.hotflick.net

I can fly. I'm a pilot
 
2013-07-23 09:09:07 AM

Subtle_Canary: Disposable Rob: Elfich: I think the issue is emblematic of a culture shift in the air force: The old guard which promotes the lone wolf fighter jock with all of the mystique and machismo that go with it. On the other side: the new guard which has figured out that if you take a pass on the mystique and machismo you get to go home at the end of your shift and see your wife and kids on a regular basis.

The article is all worried (yeah, I know, Daily Mail), but this as a good thing. The Air Force is still spending years and millions of dollars training up pilots who eventually fly drones anyway, while the Army is training enlisted guy in 23 weeks to do the same thing. There has to be a shift in the name of progress.

UAV operator used to be an enlisted AFSC back in the day when they were unproven and fighter jocks were scoffing at the idea of what to them were RC planes doing REAL piloting. Then we started dropping weapons from them and getting shiat done and the brass swooped down to take control of it. The culture of the USAF is that enlisted men are peons barely fit for the uniform they wear while any of the REAL jobs can only be done by a rated officer. An enlisted weather guy goes through 30 weeks of meteorology training, about 2 years of OWS forecaster training and experience, an additional 3 months of observers school and by the time he is reaching E-6 better have a BS in climatology and have at least another 2 specialist schools under his belt but the second a butter bar with wings tells him about how weather 'really works' he's expected to STFU and defer to his superior.

When the plane becomes a terrain feature the blame list normally follows
-Maintenance guys
-Life support guys
-weather guys
-bad luck
-
-
-
-
-
-maybe he was just a shiat pilot


If an E-6 can't handle a butterbar, he may as well hang up his stripes.
 
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