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Terrorism Funds May Let Brass Fly in Style

 

Luxury Pods for Air Force Debated

 

The Air Force's top leadership sought for three years to spend counterterrorism funds on "comfort capsules" to be installed on military planes that ferry senior officers and civilian leaders around the world, with at least four top generals involved in design details such as the color of the capsules' carpet and leather chairs, according to internal e-mails and budget documents.

 

Production of the first capsule -- consisting of two sealed rooms that can fit into the fuselage of a large military aircraft -- has already begun.

 

Air Force officials say the government needs the new capsules to ensure that leaders can talk, work and rest comfortably in the air. But the top brass's preoccupation with creating new luxury in wartime has alienated lower-ranking Air Force officers familiar with the effort, as well as congressional staff members and a nonprofit group that calls the program a waste of money.

 

Air Force documents spell out how each of the capsules is to be "aesthetically pleasing and furnished to reflect the rank of the senior leaders using the capsule," with beds, a couch, a table, a 37-inch flat-screen monitor with stereo speakers, and a full-length mirror.

 

The effort has been slowed, however, by congressional resistance to using counterterrorism funds for the project and by lengthy internal deliberations about a series of demands for modifications by Air Force generals. One request was that the color of the leather for the seats and seat belts in the mobile pallets be changed from brown to Air Force blue and that seat pockets be added; another was that the color of the table's wood be darkened.

 

Changing the seat color and pockets alone was estimated in a March 12 internal document to cost at least $68,240.

 

 

full text ---> here

 

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the evils of military procurement run amok.

 

I'd like to see the JCIDS documentation for that junk!

 

If we could only just go out and buy commercial off-the-shelf executive transport aircraft......

 

waaaaaaay back when on the old NEACP (still hanging in there) we had the executive "Gold Room" on the aircraft which we all thought was nice, comfortable stuff. If that was good enough for Regean - why wouldn't it be good enough for the top brass now?

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I wonder what a real general like Curtis LeMay would say about this?

 

 

Bet he's been spinning in his grave.

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#1 on the list for cutting wasteful spending. For the price of $68,000 the brass can deal with brown leather.

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Bet he's been spinning in his grave.

 

HA! After the meltdown of nuclear surety standards the rate of rotation should be enough to power the nation's electrical needs if we could him up to a generator!

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Where they might be also getting some funds for their luxury items is here: Going Chute-less

The story is titled: Going Chute-less: Air Force pulls parachutes from KC-135s, By Tech. Sgt. Jason Schaap

"At the same time, a lot of time, manpower and money goes into buying, maintaining and training to use parachutes. With the Air Force hungry for cost-saving efficiencies under its Air Force Smart Operations for the 21st Century program, commonly known as AFSO 21, the parachutes were deemed obsolete."

Hey, somebody call AFSO 21 and give them some more cost-saving ideas such as doing away with seats in aircraft because why sit when you can stand? The crew can just wear their civilian clothes and velcro or duct tape themselves to the bulkheads, airframe. Well you get the idea. I'm sure we all can come up with some great cost-saving ideas so the upper command structure can live the life of Riley because hey they deserve it more than the enlisted ranks do.

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Where they might be also getting some funds for their luxury items is here: Going Chute-less

The story is titled: Going Chute-less: Air Force pulls parachutes from KC-135s, By Tech. Sgt. Jason Schaap

"At the same time, a lot of time, manpower and money goes into buying, maintaining and training to use parachutes. With the Air Force hungry for cost-saving efficiencies under its Air Force Smart Operations for the 21st Century program, commonly known as AFSO 21, the parachutes were deemed obsolete."

Hey, somebody call AFSO 21 and give them some more cost-saving ideas such as doing away with seats in aircraft because why sit when you can stand? The crew can just wear their civilian clothes and velcro or duct tape themselves to the bulkheads, airframe. Well you get the idea. I'm sure we all can come up with some great cost-saving ideas so the upper command structure can live the life of Riley because hey they deserve it more than the enlisted ranks do.

 

OK, here I go on the wrong side of the majority. However, this is an open forum and I get to toss in my two cents worth too, right? I have been on extended build up missions where the work never stops (17-20 hours) and only a very few in the crowd are tasked with making all of the decisons for the op. They need to be as fresh as possible and able to get all relevant information, think fast, huddle with the right people, and get our forces doing all of the right things. This is not possible from the drop seat in the rear of a C-130. The noise alone would fight all attempts to speak or think. Now I never sat in that seat and never had to shoulder the decisions for vast operations, but out at the end of the whip where I served a great deal of my time in, my hopes and prayers were that those tasked with that responsibility were making good decisions affected as minimally as possible by environmental factors. If the boy needs a big comfy seat to help him make good decisions as to when and where he sends my pink body in harm's way, give him the best in the business. Rank has its privileges, but it is all too often it is forgotten that along with those privileges goes the responsibility for lives, equipment, and success.

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All Lemay would have needed was Comm with all of SAC(For Chewing Butt) and a BIG ashtray for his cigar.

 

I flew C-117's(Super DC-3's) my last 6 months in the Corps. One was outfitted pretty plush for the Generals. The only thing we were told was to add power slowly on takeoff so as not to spill the coffee or the drinks in the back. Carry lots of power coming in for landing,to grease it on and not bounce.

If we did that it was a good flight.

 

The C-130 squadrons had a pod they would put in back rigged plush for VIP's.

That was 1973,so the plush pods have been around for a while. :blink:

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Comfort and isolation from things like prop noise etc is one thing, but to be pissing money away on making the leather air force blue instead of the existing brown and more on making things aesthetically pleasing for top brass?

 

Beyond making sure things aren't some mind numbing pattern or color scheme (every day private jet trim does just fine) its wasting time and money. Has our high command really become such sissies? someone needs to give these guys the spartan treatment.

 

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OK, here I go on the wrong side of the majority. However, this is an open forum and I get to toss in my two cents worth too, right? I have been on extended build up missions where the work never stops (17-20 hours) and only a very few in the crowd are tasked with making all of the decisons for the op. They need to be as fresh as possible and able to get all relevant information, think fast, huddle with the right people, and get our forces doing all of the right things. This is not possible from the drop seat in the rear of a C-130. The noise alone would fight all attempts to speak or think. Now I never sat in that seat and never had to shoulder the decisions for vast operations, but out at the end of the whip where I served a great deal of my time in, my hopes and prayers were that those tasked with that responsibility were making good decisions affected as minimally as possible by environmental factors. If the boy needs a big comfy seat to help him make good decisions as to when and where he sends my pink body in harm's way, give him the best in the business. Rank has its privileges, but it is all too often it is forgotten that along with those privileges goes the responsibility for lives, equipment, and success.

 

actually, I agree with you up to a point. My earlier comment was based on what we had in the NEACP for our high level group. There is none higher than who were, and sometimes did, pick up. We had very nice accomodations on the aircraft for them, and for us for those very, very long missions.

 

I know of what you speak and agree with you.

 

Where I break is just how nice they have to be and at what cost. They should be comfortable after several days of flight ops. But more importantly, how much is to be contracted for. The suite cited above seems a bit further than needed. The accomodations on the NEACP/NAOC for the President are not as good as what is being laid out above and the cost seems out of line. My earlier comment that we should be able to get off the shelf stuff is that should be the benchmark for cost. The bit about changing the color for 80k is not reasonable in my view even through our broken aquisition system. That really is what is behind my earlier comment.

 

---------

 

On the parachute question. That is a Red Herring and really not a valid comparison. The survivability of bailing out of a 135/707 airframe has long been questioned and the AWACS, just one example, removed the parachutes for that reason long ago. I am quite positive that no one is taking the cost of the executive suite out of the survivability equipment for other aircrews nor out of the hide of enlisted support accounts. That really is not a reasonable conclusion or valid comparison.

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