Thursday, August 28, 2008

A Step in the Right Direction

Crew chiefs and other aircraft munitions troops and maintainers will not move into operations groups, senior Air Force leaders decided Wednesday. Kudos to the new Chief of Staff, General Norton Schwartz, for leading the fight against the move.

With Wednesday's decision, a return to flawed reorganization schemes of the McPeak-era has been delayed--but not prevented. If Barack Obama wins the fall election all bets are off, since General McPeak is a senior advisor to the presidential nominee, and angling for a senior defense post in a Democratic administration.

Just one more reason to vote for John McCain.


OldSarg said...

I wish you knew what good news that is to me.

billmill said...

Thank goodness common sense has prevailed. Now if we could get the AF to bring back Warrants we may end up with real experts running maintenance organizations.

SMSgt Mac said...

Now all the new Chief has to do is recall all those maintainer 0-2s and 0-3s who were RIF'd because they weren't going to be needed....if they'd be willing to come back to a capricious and rudderless AF. Hope the new Chief can fix that.

This OPs-Maintenance tug-o-war has been going on for decades. The first time I experienced it was in the 70's and some bright boy decided munitions loaders should belong to the flying squadrons. Overnight, incidents that involved loaders mishandling munitions went from a section-to-section chief resolution process to a section chief-commander-commander-section chief process.
Guess how that worked out?

There were other instances of ops types overriding maintainers to the detriment of the maintenance, but that was the first.

Lela said...

Amen to all the comments so far! It's wonderful when good sense we just need to keep Senator Obama from winning in order to keep McPeak's hands off the Defense department!

Ed Rasimus said...

Out to post this under the heading of "Wheels--Re-invention of,"

It all goes back to the LeMay AF when the focus was on big bomber ops and the tactical forces were low on the food chain. Curt set up a bomb wing with maintainers far detached from ops and they "delivered" airplanes when they had them available. It wasn't that big a problem with a B-52 base that has 9 airplane squadrons that mostly sat on alert and only flew one or two sorties per day.

When we got to SEA and more intense ops the trend had been to package tactical squadrons with their maintenance. It made sense for deployed operations, but the "delivery" issue crippled sortie generation.

That got us re-organized in the late '60s with maintainers under a Deputy for Logistics--AGS, OMS, MMS and Supply were separate squadrons and didn't report to the Operations folks.

It worked like a charm!

Then came the Perfumed Prince of the Pentagon, Tony McPeak who apparently lost all the common sense he had when he was a Captain and Major fighter pilot. (And Thunderbird.)

Common sense returns. Ron Fogleman got the uniform reverted (almost as good as it was) and worked a lot of the issues. I really wish they would have given Ralston a shot at Chief of Staff--or maybe Chuck Horner. Can't go wrong with an old Thud Driver.

Schwartz is on the right track, but I wish we'd found a warrior tactical type for the slot.

Cerulean Bill said...

You must be kidding. McPeak's an idiot, granted. The cancellation of the move is excellent, granted. But voting for McCain for any reason?

Only if you assume things are pretty much okay now.

SMSgt Mac said...

No, McCain is an arrogant, (insert a few expletive adjectives here) insensitive jerk at times (which also makes him a very unique former POW in my experience), and NOT my favorite guy in the world..but he is definitely NOT an idiot.

An idiot would do idiotic things like...oh say, closely associate themselves with a rabid America-hating 'pastor' or a known unrepentent convicted terrorist or be against a successful military campaign even AFTER it was successful, and expect the electorate not to care.

I wouldn't go fishing with McCain....but I wouldn't want to be in the same zip code with Obama.

Ed Rasimus said...

All fighter pilots are arrogant, and we take great pride in our insensitivity.

I've been at joint reunions of Red River Valley Fighter Pilot Ass'n (River Rats) and NamPOWs on several occasions and find that John is held in high respect by a great majority of them.

If guys like Bud Day and Paul Galanti support him it says a lot.

Last May we had a live telephone hookup to McCain at the start of the reunion formal banquet. John took some time out of his busy schedule (it had to fit when we got seated, not when he was ready), to talk to the gang for about ten minutes. And it wasn't self-serving hope and change drivel.

SMSgt Mac said...

I am more than a little familiar with the fighter pilot swagger... being also a son-in-law to a ~9000Hr F-89/101/4C/D/E flying, combat Gunslingin'(366TFW) Fightin' Fuujin(4TFS)- a man who was in my dating-his-daughter days was a nail-spitting archtype Luke IP who made the Great Santini look like a Wuss, and one by whom I have felt honored to be thought of as a 'good puke' for these past 35 years. And believe me, Col Day's opinion of McCain carries a lot of weight with me as well.
So, my thoughts on McCain are already tempered by 'awareness' of his background. When McCain is President, he will have to grow a little into the job or he'll have everyone so PO'd at him before a year is out he'll be ineffective. I contrast that mild caution of course with one for his opposition, who I think is in waaay over his head with nothing but really bad Marxist leanings and who would be a rubber-stamp stop for every lame-brained and ruinous idea Pelosi, Reid, and Co could dream up.