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Thread: The controversial plan to slash military housing allowance faces opposition

  1. #41
    Administrator Mjölnir's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sandsjames View Post
    Right, because that's not what we were used to. Though I'd put our technicians up against anyone in the world.
    Concur, the USAF does have great technicians. The problem that I think the older culture created that forced the newer culture was the inability to get those technicians where they needed to be to conduct their missions in contingency operations. Circa 2001, 2002 & 2003 the USAF lost some significant contingency combat support missions because they could not deploy aircraft (mostly the support personnel) quickly enough nor could they provide over target dwell time (based on wanting to fly from more established bases in Turkey etc.) to meet the supported commanders requirements, leaving the supported commander with a decision:

    1. The 100% solution in 60-90 days but only 50% of the dwell time he wants.
    2. The 80% solution in 7 days and 100% of the dwell time he wants.

    With personnel in harms way at the time, which do you think happened? I don't think it is coincidence that the 2002, 2003 & 2004 budgets reflected upticks in money to more expeditionary services & platforms and that the revamp of the Air Force culture and push to make them more 'military' came along as well. My hypothesis: If the USAF postured for 30 or so years for a strategic fight in Europe etc. and suddenly found themselves relegated to fewer and fewer roles in Afghanistan and Iraq etc. they find themselves with smaller pieces of the defense budget and moving away from the old model helps keep them relevant ... show me the money.

    Quote Originally Posted by sandsjames View Post
    And this is where the screw-up happened. If the Army needed more Soldiers they should recruit more Soldiers. Don't quickly "train" Air Force finance guys how to operate the 50 on the Hummer and then expect them to perform like an expert.
    No disagreement. As an infantryman having 60 or 90 day 'wonders' who have rudimentary combat training is almost more of a bother/headache/danger than it is worth. Programmatically though, 60 or 90 days is much shorter than it would take to recruit someone, send them to basic training, send them to infantry school or other MOS training, attach them to a line unit etc. It is far from the best solution, but it is one solution. I also think the willingness of the USAF and USN to support Individual Augmentation was to plug into the Overseas Contingency Operations pool of the budget (emergency spending in excess of the DoD budget) ... again ... show me the money.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rusty Jones View Post
    - but I know that, for Navy, IA billets were completely voluntary, and many Sailors were eager to take them in order to go overseas and pocket some extra cash, or have a better guarantee of duty stations at the time.
    From the individual Sailor perspective, yes most (vast majority) were voluntary. I know many unit commanders who were not at all excited about losing personnel from their command for nearly 2 years (since BUPERS did not provide replacements). Big navy bought into the Joint Staff IA concept ... but at the middle management level there was a lot of bitching.
    The most important six inches on the battlefield ... is between your ears.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mjölnir View Post
    Concur, the USAF does have great technicians. The problem that I think the older culture created that forced the newer culture was the inability to get those technicians where they needed to be to conduct their missions in contingency operations. Circa 2001, 2002 & 2003 the USAF lost some significant contingency combat support missions because they could not deploy aircraft (mostly the support personnel) quickly enough nor could they provide over target dwell time (based on wanting to fly from more established bases in Turkey etc.) to meet the supported commanders requirements, leaving the supported commander with a decision:

    1. The 100% solution in 60-90 days but only 50% of the dwell time he wants.
    2. The 80% solution in 7 days and 100% of the dwell time he wants.

    With personnel in harms way at the time, which do you think happened? I don't think it is coincidence that the 2002, 2003 & 2004 budgets reflected upticks in money to more expeditionary services & platforms and that the revamp of the Air Force culture and push to make them more 'military' came along as well. My hypothesis: If the USAF postured for 30 or so years for a strategic fight in Europe etc. and suddenly found themselves relegated to fewer and fewer roles in Afghanistan and Iraq etc. they find themselves with smaller pieces of the defense budget and moving away from the old model helps keep them relevant ... show me the money.


    What people don't realize is that, prior to 9-11, the AF didn't deploy to "War Zones". We were always at least one country away. Problems with Iraq? Well, we were perfectly happy to stay at PSAB. So after 9-11, the service that had only dealt with very minor, very few and far between combat situations, was suddenly expected to perform in an AOR we weren't used to. A boxer had got thrown into the octagon with a bunch of trained MMA fighters and was expected to compete. The failure was at headquarters level, no doubt, by making the decision to try to take on more of a combat mission with a complete lack of preparation, training, or culture for doing so. Hell, we did the bike test and fired 40 M-16 rounds every 1-2 years, depending on the AFSC.

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    Administrator Mjölnir's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sandsjames View Post
    What people don't realize is that, prior to 9-11, the AF didn't deploy to "War Zones". We were always at least one country away. Problems with Iraq? Well, we were perfectly happy to stay at PSAB. So after 9-11, the service that had only dealt with very minor, very few and far between combat situations, was suddenly expected to perform in an AOR we weren't used to. A boxer had got thrown into the octagon with a bunch of trained MMA fighters and was expected to compete. The failure was at headquarters level, no doubt, by making the decision to try to take on more of a combat mission with a complete lack of preparation, training, or culture for doing so. Hell, we did the bike test and fired 40 M-16 rounds every 1-2 years, depending on the AFSC.
    Pretty much. The problem with staying at PSAB was the required flight time from PSAB to the AOR cut down on dwell time over the target that the supporting commander wanted, not to mention the Saudis became a pain in the ass about mission planning / execution and AUAB made more sense for longer range aircraft. It became less about comfort and more about meeting the demand of the supported commander. To make up for the dwell time loss required more aircraft ... aircraft not in the inventory. Simply put the battlefield had changed and the USAF had a choice. My opinion is had they not changed the way they supported combat the USAF would of had to absorb significant cuts.
    The most important six inches on the battlefield ... is between your ears.

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    Senior Member Rainmaker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mjölnir View Post
    the Overseas Contingency Operations pool of the budget (emergency spending in excess of the DoD budget) ... again ... show me the money.
    You Gotta love the term "emergency spending".....16 years later & we're still in a state of "emergency". That Bullshit has been one of the biggest self-inflicted wounds of the never ending forever war.

    Because, you can't buy end strength or even hire civil servants with supplemental O&M $. So, DoD's had to hire a virtual army of Staff Augmentation contractors just to conduct its core missions which should've been done by the military itself or at least classified as inherently governmental and conducted by government employees.

    So, while the Military cuts pay& benefits for its own personnel to the bone. They'll continue pouring a $170 billion a year into contracted services. So, that inept/corrupt Admirals and Generals (who suck not only at war planning but, logistical & procurement planning as well) can keep raping the American Taxpayer and channeling the gravy to their buddies (and future employers) in the Defense Industry.

    Quote Originally Posted by sandsjames View Post
    So after 9-11, the service that had only dealt with very minor, very few and far between combat situations, was suddenly expected to perform in an AOR we weren't used to.
    This applied to all the services.
    Last edited by Rainmaker; 06-07-2016 at 09:10 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rainmaker View Post

    This applied to all the services.
    Right, but the other services, Army and Marines specifically, train for that shit.

  6. #46
    Senior Member Rainmaker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SomeRandomGuy View Post
    Ironically, BAS for Officers is actually lower than for enlisted. Currently Enlisted get $357.44 per month and Officers get $246.24.

    Maybe Officers eat less?

    In any event, I agree with your take agreeing with mine. There isn't a legitimate reason that a lower ranking person needs worse living quarters. Set the rates based on the fair amount for the area and give it to everyone. If they don't think it is enough they can go live in the privatized (or on base) housing that IS the same for everyone. Boom! problem solved.

    P.S. The most likely reason Enlisted BAS is higher is because DFAC contracts are somewhat based on those rates. Enlisted meal deductions are set to an amount slightly lower than what the member receives for the full month. I don't know the current rate but it probably amounts to about $325 of the $357.44 that Enlisted receive. That money goes to the DFAC to provide the meals. If Enlisted BAS were as low as Officer BAS they probably couldn't find a contractor or they'd have to charge more for the meal card than what the member actually gets.
    If the Joint Chiefs are really serious about reforming pay and improving morale, then they should just get rid of BAS altogether and go back to a traditional ration system, where each man gets a loaf of bread, a 24 oz cut of beef or pork and a 1/2 pint of whiskey or a quart of beer each night!

    https://www.navycs.com/charts/1794-navy-rations.html
    Last edited by Rainmaker; 06-07-2016 at 08:33 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rainmaker View Post
    If the Joint Chiefs are really serious about reforming pay and improving morale, then they should just get rid of BAS altogether and go back to a traditional ration system, where each man gets a loaf of bread, a 24 oz cut of beef or pork and a 1/2 pint of whiskey or a quart of beer each night!

    https://www.navycs.com/charts/1794-navy-rations.html
    It would have to be updated for today's military.

    Bread must be gluten free, replace the meat with quinoa, and ensure the beer is a "craft" beer.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sandsjames View Post
    It would have to be updated for today's military.

    Bread must be gluten free, replace the meat with quinoa, and ensure the beer is a "craft" beer.
    And the meet must be both Kosher and Halal so as to not offend muslims...

  9. #49
    Senior Member Rusty Jones's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by garhkal View Post
    And the meet must be both Kosher and Halal so as to not offend muslims...
    At least Rainmaker would've had the balls to say "and Jews."
    "Well... Uber's going to "driverless" cars soon, and their research probably shows that they're a natural fit (when it comes to getting paid for doing nothing)."
    -Rainmaker, referencing black males

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    Senior Member efmbman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rainmaker View Post
    If the Joint Chiefs are really serious about reforming pay and improving morale, then they should just get rid of BAS altogether and go back to a traditional ration system, where each man gets a loaf of bread, a 24 oz cut of beef or pork and a 1/2 pint of whiskey or a quart of beer each night!

    https://www.navycs.com/charts/1794-navy-rations.html
    Quote Originally Posted by sandsjames View Post
    It would have to be updated for today's military.

    Bread must be gluten free, replace the meat with quinoa, and ensure the beer is a "craft" beer.
    Quote Originally Posted by garhkal View Post
    And the meet must be both Kosher and Halal so as to not offend muslims...
    Reminds me of a time back in 1999. Me and a good friend were tasked to spend 4 weeks in Baumholder, Germany, to be instructors / graders for the Expert Field Medical Badge testing cycle. The Office in charge was a real good idea fairy, constantly looking for solutions to problems that did not exist. Once of his "problems" was that we should contact each unit sending candidates and ask about dietary concerns (just like the ones you guys listed). After talking about this for about an hour, my friend spoke up and said "Well, me and him (referring to me) are Pagan. Can we get a goat to sacrifice on the night of the full moon?"

    I guess you had to be there...

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