FARTICLE15

Rhino Shit

Last week, the Air Force published their 2016 Diversity and Inclusion Initiatives.  Any guesses as to what the main goal of this latest endeavor might be?  WRONG!!!  It’s all about another PC gang rape to get another useless ass-sucking mission ineffective glory hound another promotion and our SECAF wasted no time jumping on the bullshit bandwagon.  Instead of breaking the entire thing down, let’s take their own words point by point….

Public Affairs Guidance

2016 Diversity and Inclusion Initiatives 30 Sep 2016

1. PURPOSE: To provide communication guidance to public affairs officials on the Air Force’s 2016 Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) initiatives.

2. PA POSTURE: PA posture is ACTIVE. SAF/PA will post the article in section 4 and associated video to AF.mil. Additionally, an implementation plan is expected to be released by 15 Oct.

3. BACKGROUND: In 2015, the Air Force introduced a set of initiatives designed to promote diversity and inclusion across the Air Force. The efforts were in recognition of the fact that in order to remain the world’s best Air Force, we must compete for talent, innovation, and expertise in new and creative ways. Now the Air Force is introducing 13 additional initiatives with the goal of retaining current talent while at the same time attracting new talent from across the diverse U.S. population in order to build the Total Force of tomorrow.

Okay, so right out of the gate, the author implies that the Air Force has not adequately competed for talent, innovation, and expertise while using the words diversity and inclusion without defining either or explaining what that actually means.  And what exactly is the “diverse U.S. population” and the Total Force of Tomorrow?

4. PUBLIC STATEMENT:

The Air Force’s greatest strength will always be its people. They perform complex missions every day with unrivaled talent and expertise. Our continued success critically depends on our ability to identify, attract, develop and retain such talent—anywhere we find it. The challenges we face today are far too serious, and the implications of failure far too great, for our Air Force to do less than fully and inclusively leverage our nation’s greatest strength — our remarkably diverse people. Across the force, diversity of background, experience, demographics, perspectives, thought and organization are essential to our ultimate success in an increasingly competitive and dynamic global environment. These initiatives will allow us to retain and attract the talent we need to continue to be the world’s best Air Force.

So, are we not finding the best talent now?  And why do they keep face-fucking us with the word DIVERSE?  Is the implication that any one or many groups or demographics not being recruited or deliberately excluded from recruitment?  And why the obsession with this yet to be defined “diversity?”  Once we put on the uniform, aren’t we all one team, one fight?  No one is special?  “You are all equally worthless in my eyes?”  Hasn’t the big push in the Air Force been EQUALITY for the last 20+ years?  So if we truly believe in equality, then why the sudden focus on individual differences?  Let’s keep reading….

AF.mil ARTICLE.

Air Force leaders announce latest diversity, inclusion initiatives

WASHINGTON (AFNS) – In ongoing efforts to attract and retain the most innovative, skillful, and strategically agile force today, Air Force senior leaders released the second memorandum to Airmen relaying new diversity and inclusion initiatives.

Strategically agile?  What the fuck does that mean?  Explain what that means.  DEFINE IT!!!  Some of us are intelligent enough to look beyond the popular buzz terms of the month to seek actual MEANING in those words.  Did the author get paid by the number of times the words DIVERSITY and INCLUSION were used in this publication?

The 13 new initiatives include notable efforts to engage leadership and members prior to geographically-separated military spouses, lengthen the early separation decision window for female Airmen having children, establish diverse slates for key military developmental positions, promote civilian participation in professional development programs, and better market career fields to female and minority populations that currently lack diversity.

What is a “diverse slate?”  What do you mean by civilian participation in professional development?  Are we talking about retirees or prior service civilians or civilians who have never worn the uniform and know jack shit about military professional development?  And how exactly do we market career fields to ANYONE?  Call me crazy, but when I signed the dotted line and took the oath, I took the job I was given to meet the needs of the mission and the Air Force.  Since when do any of the services specifically target and cater to anyone for specific career fields?  There is some of that on the officer side, but for the 18 year old high school grad coming in open general who brings no quantifiable or qualifiable skill to the fight, I am curious to see the data and metrics being used to support this notion of turning recruiting and job selection into a Burger King “have it your way” menu.

In March 2015, the Air Force launched nine initiatives to help build teams comprised of diverse backgrounds, experiences and demographics. However, Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James, Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Dave Goldfein and Chief Master Sgt. of the Air Force James A. Cody acknowledged work remains to ensure continued success.

2015?  This shit has been going on for over a year?  What measures were taken?  What were the results?  What were the data, statistics, and assumptions going in?  If you failed to achieve the initial objective, what was that objective and what did you learn from those results to influence this new approach?

“Last year, we launched a set of initiatives designed to promote diversity and inclusion.” Air Force seniors said in the official memo. “These efforts recognized that to remain the world’s best Air Force, we must compete for, develop, and retain talent, skill and expertise in new and creative ways.”

Got it, you said this already….

The first round of initiatives included the Career Intermission Program, creating the online mentorship tool MyVector and opportunities to grow the female officer candidate pool.

Was there a shortage in female officer candidates before?  If so, then I assume there must be a quota to be reached and what is that quota?  If there is a quota for female officer candidates, then doesn’t this contradict the concept of equality and imply an administrative competitive advantage for females in order to meet that quota?  Let’s continue.

“While these first initiatives have made progress, we must do more to develop and retain the talent we have today and build the Total Force of tomorrow,” they wrote. “To succeed in meeting current and future mission requirements, the Air Force relies on access to the best talent our Nation has to offer. To compete for that talent in the future, we must place consistent emphasis on diversity and inclusion in order to attract and retain talent from an increasingly diverse population. Our ongoing initiatives represent another step in that direction.”

What is the “Total Force of Tomorrow?”  Please define that for the rest of us.  You are doing a piss poor job of sustaining the force of today.  Does the Air Force lack access to the best talent available?  How so?  How is targeting this yet to be defined “diversity and inclusion” demographic going to attract and retain talent, the implication being that talent is being ignored or deliberately not included?  How do you know we are missing out on anything?  Where is your data to support this assessment?  WHO are the people we are missing in this population?  What are we missing that they can bring to the table to enhance mission effectiveness and national security?  In which direction have we stepped as you have failed to define a clear objective beyond forced profiling and deliberate bias to satisfy a cut line on a line graph?

The newly released Air Force diversity and inclusion initiatives, according to the memo, align with Defense Department diversity efforts and recognize that the strength of the force will always be in its people.

What diversity efforts?

“We will continue to look holistically at our talent management processes for opportunities to ensure our Air Force is an employer of choice for our Nation’s best and brightest talent, and capitalizes on the unique contributions of all Airmen,” Air Force leadership said.

Holistically…Can’t shit any policy without that fucking buzzword bingo horse shit.  

Implementation guidance to include details for each initiative will be released by Oct. 15, 2016.

The memo from senior leaders is available here [hyperlink].
A fact sheet on all the Diversity and Inclusion initiatives is available here [hyperlink].

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5. THEMES AND MESSAGES:

For me, by the way, it’s not just about getting more people, though we do need more people in our Air Force, it’s also about getting high quality people, the right people. Make no mistake, we are in a battle for talent. So it’s about recruiting and developing and retaining the best among them. It’s about the quality of their experience in the Air Force. And for me at least it’s also been about paying special attention to certain communities that have required some special attention. So all of this is why we launched a diversity and inclusion initiative about a year and a half ago to try to and build an even more innovative and skillful team of Airmen in the future from diverse backgrounds and experiences, demographics, and perspectives.

Special communities who require special attention?  Who are these special people?  If you are going to make a point of singling out a specific group or groups of people who require special attention, then you must define who those “special” people are, what special attention they need, and how the Air Force and the nation will benefit from this intentional profiling initiative and how such special attention overrides the Air Force claim to be all about equality.  However, if you can do that, then you must openly admit that we have failed to adopt and implement equality to this point and why my 20 years of equality training hell was all for shit.

Soon General Goldfein, Chief Cody, and I will launch a second tranche of initiatives to make sure that we have access to future Airmen from all geographies and all backgrounds, and that all Airmen can succeed and advance according to their skills and education.

– Secretary James at AFA 2016 Air, Space & Cyber Conference

  •   Recruiting and retaining diverse Airmen cultivates innovation. Like different aircraft and missions make up one Air Tasking Order, different people make the best teams when integrated purposefully together.
  •   Our continued success critically depends on our ability to identify, attract, recruit, develop, and retain such talent – anywhere we find it.
  •   These initiatives recognize that approaching problems from different perspectives and with varied insights most often results in innovation.
  •   To succeed in meeting current and future mission requirements, the Air Force relies on access to the best talent our Nation has to offer. To compete for that talent in the future, we must place consistent emphasis on diversity and inclusion in order to attract and retain talent from an increasingly diverse population.

What is a “diverse Airman?”  I thought we were ALL Airmen.  So am I less of an Airman if I do not fall under one of these yet to be defined diverse categories?  Again what perspectives and varied insights that result in innovation are we missing and what data can you provide to support that claim?

6. QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS:

Q1. Why is the Air Force making a big deal out of Diversity and Inclusion recently?

A1. Transformations are led from the top of organizations. The senior leaders of the Air Force are putting resources toward increasing diversity and inclusion in the service, and they want all those leaders below them, both formal and informal, to know that this is a priority for the service which needs to be cultivated throughout the culture. Speaking about it in public also establishes accountability to that public. (SOURCE: WAYPOINTS, Winter 2016)

Fuck, I hate being forced to repeat myself, but what do you mean by diversity?  Must I assume that we are talking about gender and minority groups?  If that is the case, how is this not profiling for the sake of satisfying a PC checklist item that has no defined objective of enhancing the mission other than doing it just to say we did?

Q2. How does diversity truly influence military readiness and national security?

A2. The 21st Century geopolitical environment is dynamic and challenging. By ensuring we have the most talented, culturally competent and operationally relevant force possible, we will be much more agile, and will be able to meet nascent requirements quickly and decisively. We should also reflect our diverse citizenry so that they can identify with us. When the country’s citizens identify with us, it strengthens us all as a nation – they trust that we will do the right thing, and our Airmen have the confidence that they are serving a population that believes in who they are and what they do. (SOURCE: WAYPOINTS, Winter 2016)

AH, THE QUESTION OF THE DAY!!!!  Wait, they didn’t answer the question.  ANSWER THE FUCKING QUESTION!!!!  You have yet to explain how this undefined initiative to target an undefined group or groups will ensure we have the most talented Airmen in the fight.  What the fuck does culturally competent mean?  What the fuck does operationally relevant mean?  How will this make us more agile?  WHAT nascent requirements?  Identify with us?  Since when does the civilian populace give two fucks about identifying with us???  They see a uniform.  THAT’S IT!!!  Beyond that, they don’t give a damn!  We are not here to be motivational speakers or guidance counselors.  We are here to protect freedom and kill every motherfucker who threatens to destroy our freedom, safety, and liberty.  Now we have to give out free hugs?  Are you fucking shitting me?!?!?!

Q3. The officer corps of the AF is less diverse than the enlisted corps, why is that? 

A3. Talented, college-bound youth throughout the United States are aggressively pursued by industry and academia to fill position vacancies. The Air Force needs to do a better job of competing with these other entities for this talent. In many cases, minorities, women and their families do not know the vast opportunities that exist within the Air Force’s many career fields, thus they don’t ever really consider it a place where they can pursue their dreams – we need to change that. (SOURCE: WAYPOINTS, Winter 2016)

Oh shit, they finally said it!  WOMEN AND MINORITIES.  Okay, took forever to get there, but at least we now know who they are talking about.  So, how do we do a better job of appealing to women and minorities without offering special treatment or incentives that would eliminate the phantom equality we claim to enforce now?  What specifically has to change and what evidence is there that we are not already getting the best and the brightest from the American population?  Okay, Gen. Welsh and E-9 Cody clearly demonstrated that failure and ineptitude can rapidly ascend you to the highest leadership positions in the Air Force, but then again, perhaps that is where the problem lies.  Maybe the leadership doesn’t know what the fuck they are doing and we are losing good people left and right as a result of their failures, but that is for another discussion.

Q4. How does the Air Force define “diverse?”

A4. The Air Force believes diversity encompasses all aspects of an individual to including race, religion, ethnicity, gender, experience, and perspectives. These initiatives are geared toward ensuring the Air Force attracts and retains the best and the brightest from across the full spectrum of individuals in order to ensure we continue to be the world’s best Air Force.

Whoa, whoa, whoa…..Did you just say BELIEVE?  You were asked to DEFINE something and your response is that you BELIEVE????  So this entire campaign is based on a BELIEF and not on an actual problem that can be defined, measured, quantified, etc.?  Are you shitting me?  Do you realize how quickly every one of my officers and enlisted would be shitcanned if they ever briefed senior leadership on any topic that their conclusions were based upon what they BELIEVED?  Geared toward?  If you truly BELIEVED that your endeavors are the optimum course of action based upon facts and statistics, then shouldn’t you tell me that these initiatives WILL ensure the Air Force attracts the best and brightest?  Your own word choice tells me you don’t even have confidence in the bullshit you are shoveling into our troughs.  Full spectrum….Another Pentagon buzz-phrase bingo term that is over-utilized without clear explanation of what the fuck it actually means.

Q5. The initiatives include requiring diverse officer slates for the selection of key developmental positions. In the past did the Air Force not consider diverse individuals for these positions?
A5. The Air Force has always valued diversity across the force—we realize that in order to have the absolute best personnel in each position we must draw from the full spectrum of the population. This particular initiative is designed to ensure the applicant pool has at least one qualified, diverse candidate for this type of position. This initiative is about ensuring we get the best people and the right people in the right positions. (SOURCE: D&I memo)

I hate the question as much as I hate the answer.  What is a diverse officer slate and what is a developmental position?  And the answer is not an answer.  No actual substance at all.  Sounds like Killary trying to identify a single accomplishment she has made in her political career with a diatribe of big words and nothing but rhino shit falling out of her mouth while the listeners try to figure out what the hell she just said.

Q6. One initiative is to increase the funding of AFROTC scholarships by $2.8 million to promote career and geographic diversity. Will you be undertaking similar measures to promote diversity from your other commissioning sources? (Air Force Academy/OTS)

A6. The objective behind this initiative in particular is to attract high-performing officer candidates from a variety of backgrounds and disciplines. This initiative will fund approximately 200 additional scholarship cadets. These scholarships will be focused on highly qualified ROTC candidates from underserved and underrepresented population centers with a variety of academic skill areas to meet Air Force requirements. Additionally, this initiative will also increase college internship opportunities by 200 per year over the next five years. (SOURCE: D&I memo)

Wait, is this all about just officers?  I am starting to get that impression.  Regardless, I am still waiting for a description of these initiatives and any defined objective to which they will lead.

Q7. One of the initiatives involves dual military spouses and geographic separation. What can you tell me about that?
A7. The Air Force Personnel Center (AFPC) has a very strong track record of assigning dual- military couples to join-spouse assignments. In fact, AFPC’s placement rate for join spouse assignments is 94.4%*. However, even with the efforts made to ensure couples are assigned together there are instances in which accommodations are not available. We realize that continued service can be extremely challenging for dual military couples, and believe assignments that separate families should be avoided to the fullest extent practicable while balancing mission requirements. This initiative will require approval by the Commander of AFPC before an Airman is involuntarily given an assignment geographically separated from a military spouse. Additionally, AFPC will be tasked with tracking the number of assignments and separations that occur incident to or in anticipation of such assignments so we can further asses our joint spouse processes in the future. (SOURCE: AFPC)

Sucks, but joint spouse separation is a fact of military life that you cannot escape without implementing special privilege for dual military families, which is favoritism by definition and will lead to increased military to military marriages to avoid deployments and remote assignments.  Think such stunts don’t happen?  I can tell you some outrageous stories about the shit some of my troops have pulled to get out of deployments and remotes, but that is another FARTICLE all together.  However, my favorite was our fertility goddess.  The one who magically found out she was pregnant within 2 months of all four deployment notifications.  4 years, 4 kids.  Between child birth recovery and other pregnancy associated medical leave, she was out of work for 1 of those 4 years.  Ironically, with a stay at home husband and all of that extra time to study, she promoted twice during that time while others were doing the job and taking her deployments for her on short notice, but I digress…

Q8. What is being done to ensure all career fields have representation of diverse individuals?
A8. The Air Force is working to strengthen and broaden the pipeline of diverse candidates.

ANSWER THE FUCKING QUESTION!!!!  And I can’t wait to see that answer because I still want to know if there is a cultural, race, gender, or whatever quota to be implemented and enforced.  If that happens, then the shit is going to really hit the fan here.

Q9. Who owns the implementation of these initiatives and how will they be tracked?

A10. The Assistant Secretary of the Air Force (Manpower & Reserve Affairs) will conduct a one-year accountability review to track progress on the entire set of Diversity & Inclusion initiatives. In addition, the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force (Manpower & Reserve Affairs) will issue more detailed implementation guidance no later than 15 October 2016.

Having worked on an HQ staff, let me translate.  “We really aren’t doing shit, just making a lot of hollow promises we can’t keep because we have yet to define those promises we have no intention of keeping in order to satisfy some bullshit PC hard on so we look good and cover our asses at the same time to avoid being called racist or sexist as an organization, rather than focus on accomplishing the mission and treating every Airman in uniform like a human being, no better or worse than their wingman, because some assholes promotion is on the line here and we are the 300,000+ strong guinea pig in their social experiment where the results are irrelevant.”

6. POINTS OF CONTACT: Maj. Bryan Lewis at DSN 260-2786 and/or SAF/PAO at DSN 225-0640.

Sucks to be you, Maj Lewis….

Now that I have torn this official Air Force correspondence to shit, allow me to elaborate on my position.  While I have my own personal reservations about the intent behind this initiative, I do not dispute that there is a problem, nor do I acknowledge that there is a problem as explained in the above PA snot rag.  All I am doing is asking questions.  I want to know specifically what the problem is that would warrant the full weight of the SECAF, CSAF, and the CMSAF to make such a fuss that will no doubt lead to more useless CBTs, God knows how much funding to support this undefined initiative that could go for desperately needed training and equipment, and likely lead to the wrong people being rewarded with promotions and other accolades they did not earn because they are identified as being from one of these diverse groups.  Not recipients fault, but we have all seen the wrong people get the praise for the wrong reasons and this is just going to amplify that deplorable practice.

I want to know what the problem really is.  I want to know how they plan to solve it.  I want to know how it will enhance the mission and national security.  I want to know that if it really is a problem, is it the Air Force’s problem or is it a problem that is beyond the Air Force’s control or influence and we are trying to address it for the sake of stealing some PC spotlight.  In 23 years of active duty and civilian service, I have had the honor and privilege of having been surrounded by men and women of all races and cultures, be they U.S. Military or coalition members and foreign partners from all over the world.  As the overprivileged white devil who grew up in a sheltered environment who has been charged to interact with and lead such a DIVERSE mix of individuals, I ask a lot of questions so I can better understand who they are and how to best optimize their performance so I can get the best out of them and help them be the best of themselves FOR themselves.  To this day, I am still asking questions and learning harsh lessons of cultural paradigms and misperceptions I never imagined possible.  I have learned much and I still have much to learn.  Our tax dollars are being wasted and the mission further compromised while the actual problems that do exist remain unresolved.

Based on what I know, what I have observed, what I have experienced, and what I have learned, I am comfortable saying with high confidence that this diversity and inclusion bullshit is exactly that.  BULLSHIT.  As I stated above, I do not deny or acknowledge the problem that remains unidentified in this PA toilet paper roll.  Based on my own experiences and observations, there are problems that need to be addressed, confronted, and solved, but this endeavor has zero intention or design to do anything productive at all.  Just look at all of the irony of the metaphorical anal intrusion the whole sexual assault training nightmare has been like the last few years.  Nothing accomplished whatsoever, but god dammit, no commander will ever be held accountable because you watched that video and looked at those slides 15 times a week!  Fuck the actual problem or actually addressing or trying to solve it, long as we put that CYA stamp on senior leadership evals, then the services can declare victory while others continue to be victims.

The problem is real.  Bigotry and gender bias does still exist and military leadership, despite great strides and the best of intent, are addressing their perception of the problem, but doing nothing productive to acknowledge, understand, confront, and solve the actual problem.  Just paying lip service as a formality of obligation.  Nothing more.  Just blue falcons with shinier accouterments and fancier suits.  Defenders defend.  Warriors fight.  Leaders LEAD.  Words are hollow without action.  Not action for the sake of taking action, but action based upon conviction and commitment to do what is right.  Integrity first.  Service before self.  Excellence in all we do.  Don’t say it if you don’t believe it and refuse to live it.

FLASH

FLASHTAG: TALKISCHEAP

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