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Posted by Jolly on July 23, 2013


No, you don't have to be a rocket scientist to figure out that our current fighter pilotJohn-Wayne-p15.jpg shortage has everything to do with PC run amuck and nothing to do with money. Hell, back in the day most of us would have done this job for beer money.  But our politically correct managers are now trying to figure out how much it will cost to keep warriors in the military to endure the pain of the political correct cancer in our ranks.  Geez, it's like the Duke said, "Life's tough, it's tougher if you're stupid."  Here's an article from the Air Force rag that makes me sick.  

Air Force offers fighter pilots $225,000 to stay in

By Jeff Schogol 
Staff Writer

The Air Force is opening its wallet to keep more fighter pilots for a longer period of time, even as the service faces serious budget cuts that may continue for years.

About 250 fighter pilots are eligible to receive a $225,000 bonus in exchange for a nine-year commitment under the latest change to the Aviator Retention Pay program, said Lt. Col. Kurt Konopatzke, chief of rated force policy. Pilots can take half the money up front in a lump sum payout of $112,500, minus taxes. The rest is paid out over the nine years of the contract.

Previously, fighter pilots could only sign up to five-year contracts for bonuses of $25,000 per year, so now they can receive nearly twice the amount of money to stay in the Air Force, Konopatzke said. Other aviators also are eligible for the retention bonus, but for contracts of no more than five years, at up to $25,000 per year for a maximum of $125,000.

Fighter pilots who have completed 10 years of service after pilot training have until Sept. 30, the end of the fiscal year, to decide whether to sign a nine-year contract, Konopatzke said. The Air Force hopes about 162 fighter pilots — 65 percent of those eligible — will take the new option. That would cost the Air Force about $36.675 million, with a payout this fiscal year of $18.337 million.

The reason the Air Force is being so generous is that it has a current and projected shortage of fighter pilots, Konopatzke said. Last year, the Air Force allowed fighter pilots to take half of their retention bonus up front if they extended their contracts for five years.

“As we started looking at the data through FY 13 and in the out years, we realized that the shortage hasn’t gone away, and as a matter of fact, as we look at our projections, we think that shortage is going to continue for the next several years,” he said.

That led the Air Force to up its offer.

In April 2012, Gen. Hawk Carlisle — then a three-star general — told Air Force Times the pilot shortfall was because instructor pilots had been needed for combat missions, limiting the number of pilots coming through the training pipeline.

“In years past, we couldn’t execute all of our peacetime training flying hours that was a requirement because we were deployed too much,” Carlisle said at the time. “We’re trying to get that balance right. As things draw down, and hopefully to some extent the downrange flying decreases, we’ll increase home-station flying hours and concentrate on that.”

The Air Force also has a retention issue with fighter pilots, Konopatzke said.

“The fighter pilots in FY 12 took slightly less than their other rated counterparts who were eligible for the bonus: 60 percent vs. 65 percent,” he said. “Why they’re doing that, honestly is anecdotal evidence, I don’t want to speculate on why they’re electing to not take the bonus and separate.”

The option for fighter pilots to sign nine-year contracts comes with slightly more than three months left in the fiscal year. The delay is due to the automatic spending cuts that took effect in March, known as “sequestration,” Konopatzke said.

Forced to cut money from its budget, the Air Force had to figure out what special pays it could offer this fiscal year, he said.

“The Air Force leadership had to take a look at where those cuts would come from and which programs we would have to either cut or not,” he said.


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Posted by gat1537 on
Publicizing bonuses like this is pretty desperate. After I left the Air Force as a career fighter pilot, I went to work for a civilian company who made you sign a hiring agreement that if you disclosed your pay to other employees they would cut your gonads off.

The Air Force has enough problems without throwing gasoline on the fire. When I was still on active duty, the "support" Air Force was bitching pretty loudly about the pilot bonuses back then. I know some support fields like medical get bonuses but I can only imagine the grousing and bitching that will be going on about this most recent desperate measure.

Jolly's got it right that the underlying reason for getting desperate like this is a b.s. climate of p.c. to the hilt. What a crock.
Posted by LieSniper on
Don't worry. The girls & queers will save us! When I signed up, being gay verboten. While I was in uniform it became optional. I just thank God I left before it became mandatory. Most of the people running the show don't know what makes a warrior tick, and those that do are too afraid speak up. A fighter pilot is like any other endangered species. If you destroy the habitat that is essential to his existence, you shouldn't be surprised that the breed is dying off.

Perhaps we should do a little experiment. In some squadrons, bring back pin up calendars, strippers in the club of Friday nights and cigars in the club, then compare the morale and retention rate to the Shirley Temple Wings . . . Nothing sexist or anything. It's just the empirical scientist and academic curiosity coming out in me. Just sayin.
Posted by arlo on
If there is any truth to the legendary tale of an Eagle driver and a male crew chief checking out each other's "pee-pees and wee-wees" in a bread van on the Kadena flightline circa 1982, any fan of irony would get a sardonic chuckle how differently that case would be handled today. In our modern enlightened environment, this young pilot would be lauded as a social pioneer breaking unjust stereotypes and forging the path forward.
Posted by Doc on
There is truth to the "Kadena Affair"! Am an Ol' Fart that was around for that. Brought Aluminum Overcast driver's moral way down that they had "packer" in their ranks. Provided grrreeeaaattt laughs for us Viper brethren! Still laugh about it.
No shoot 'em in the lips calls, Cycle the ECC closed when taxiing by an Eagle...ect.
Posted by Jolly on
From Bill:

My definition:
"Political Correctness is a doctrine, fostered by a delusional, illogical minority, and rabidly promoted by an unscrupulous mainstream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a turd by the clean end."
Use it on your website - it's soooooo true…..
Posted by arlo on
I know what you mean. If you ever needed an Eagle driver to shut up about a 150 mile Fox 1 kill, all you had to say is, "If the breadvan's rocking, then don't come knocking."

However, those were the dark days before we embraced the ministrations of the likes of Les Aspin and Patsy Schroeder. Instead of offering comfort and solace to a fellow military member, we defaulted to the "Fear, Sarcasm, and Ridicule" paradigm of which we were all accustomed. We all see how wrong that is today. Let's face it: The discipline was just too rigid. The negative peer pressure enforced on anyone who stepped out of line only hurt unit cohesiveness and unfairly damaged someone's self-esteem. TOTs were set without any consideration for a crew to get their favorite latte, or browse the selection of embroidery books at the BX. It took years of therapy for me to get over some of the personal attacks made on me in the squadron doofer book.

(For the record and without going into details, I made Patsy sit in a Huey on the ground for an extra 20 minutes in the hot New Mexico sun ~20 years ago. It made my mother proud.)
Posted by VD on
1. Just round up to a cool 250K, that way the pilots can do the fractions!

2. Y'all are getting a bit rainbow phobic here, the Eagle guy and his crew chief weren't wrong for batting for the either team it was wrong because is was fraternization! Bwahahahahaha!

Besides the "torch" has been passed to the RCAF and the creepy freak they caught in thier ranks stealing womens underwear among other things.


Posted by NutatingFeedhorn on
67FS Cocks. The bros wore patches that said it wasn't me. The other squadrons 12FS/44FS patches said not my squadron. Those were dark days for the community. Viper guys would put the EEC/BUC switch into BUC so the nozzle would close whenever an Eagle taxied behind them. The perpetrator became a nonperson with his name scratched out of every bar. Even his RTU class photo in the Jester bar had the image blurred out.
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