Pros/Cons of Joining the Civil Air Patrol?

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by HighFlyingA380, Jul 2, 2013.

  1. Palmpilot

    Palmpilot Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2007
    Messages:
    13,897
    Location:
    PUDBY
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Richard Palm
    There was a proposal at one point to put CAP under DOT, I think it was, instead of the Air Force, but it wasn't very popular, and nothing came of it.
     
  2. Palmpilot

    Palmpilot Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2007
    Messages:
    13,897
    Location:
    PUDBY
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Richard Palm
    In 23 years as a CAP member, I have yet to hear anyone refer to me by rank, or demand to be referred to by their rank. Of course, the practices could be different in other units, or other parts of the country.
     
  3. MAKG1

    MAKG1 Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2012
    Messages:
    13,409
    Location:
    California central coast
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    MAKG
    No, NIMS is not a set of policies and regulations. Every Federal agency has them, not just the Air Force. Just, they don't rely on an inapplicable UCMJ in their structure, have a much flatter hierarchy, much looser uniform rules (not too different from the polo shirts), and a civilian workforce with a lot of mobile assets to manage.
     
  4. OkieAviator

    OkieAviator Cleared for Takeoff

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2014
    Messages:
    1,445
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    OkieAviator
    That is extremely common in volunteer organizations, and promotes a lot of incompetence and self serving attitudes. That wouldn't be exclusive to CAP.
     
  5. airdale

    airdale Cleared for Takeoff PoA Supporter

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2007
    Messages:
    1,468
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    airdale
    Eactly. In many cases these are people who do not have power and prestige in their day jobs for a reason. Some make stellar managers, given the chance, in a volunteer organization but most do not. It's a bit of a puzzle. You really can't live with them because of the problems some cause, but you can't live without them because they do a disproportionate amount of the work.
     
  6. weilke

    weilke Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2010
    Messages:
    11,063
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    weilke
    The source is that CAP started out as part of the military and had a military mission. I believe the organization and it's mission have sufficiently changed to do away with the military structure on the senior side.
     
  7. weilke

    weilke Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2010
    Messages:
    11,063
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    weilke
    You become a Lt in the fire department because you have the required experience, graduated the fire-officer course and you have a position of leadership on the fireground. You dont gain that rank by just sticking around long enough and clicking your way through some powerpoints.
    Contributing to the mission of the organization should be motivation enough, no need to offer colorful ribbons and ornaments. It would make so much more sense to rank members by qualifications and ratings rather than a parallel military rank that doesn't carry any command responsibilities with it.
     
  8. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2009
    Messages:
    42,677
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    DenverPilot
    He might be talking about actual organization management, but oh lord... the stories I've heard about NON-emergency FEMA procurement and management procedures would make me NOT want to touch that as a "good model" with a ten foot pole... FEMA has a pretty good thing going with ICS, but that's Operational stuff. Day to day, I've never seen any evidence that FEMA is any better or worse than any other FedGov project or agency.

    Well, other than maybe the fact that they're either way better at not having their computers and websites hacked, or they're not as willing to admit it in public as the others are. :) And maybe a tiny bit of urgency in actually getting stuff done slightly faster than others, since some of the stuff they order and stash, keeps humans that vote from dying. But even most of that is just sub-contracted.
     
  9. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2009
    Messages:
    42,677
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    DenverPilot
    Wouldn't bother me when I was working for them, but everyone in the organization knows the two aren't related. If you're crazy enough to think grade means something, you get a lovely surprise when a Senior Member with no grade at all -- tells you that you don't have the requisite qualifications to even be ON SITE at a real mission, and it's time for you to leave now...

    "Someone missed something really big at your squadron somehow about explaining your training and qualifications needed to be here, and I'll have to give you a call when this is over in two or three days, and explain if they can't. Give me your phone number. And here's mine. If he's not busy, call your Commander or Training Officer also. They can probably explain before I will have time to get back to you. Please sign the log that you were here and leave an estimate of when you'll arrive home with the cadet at the table over there... SIR. Thanks. Sorry. Have a nice afternoon." :)

    (I've actually had that conversation. Bye bye... time for you to go home now...)
     
  10. jimson

    jimson Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2015
    Messages:
    134
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    jimson
    You have about convinced me to look into joining CAP. Sounds like fun.
     
  11. bflynn

    bflynn En-Route

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Messages:
    3,329
    Location:
    Fuquay Varina, NC
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Brian Flynn
    The organization was incorporated in 1946 and continues to operate as the Air Force Auxilliary, so the military connection is still the same as it was 70 years ago. The missions have changed as technology changes, but it has not significantly altered. I cannot think of any event which would cause anyone to recommend changing the paramilitary structure.
     
  12. MAKG1

    MAKG1 Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2012
    Messages:
    13,409
    Location:
    California central coast
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    MAKG
    Maybe.

    But there are quite a number of insiders who think the rank structure is silly, because it doesn't mean anything.
     
  13. mtuomi

    mtuomi En-Route

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2013
    Messages:
    2,672
    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    dera
    A teacher with PhD or EdD will make $95 after 30 years of service in Teton County. Teachers with Bachelors degrees cap out at $69 after 20 years.
    The people making money are the admin people at schools. Principals cap out at 130ish, "Finance directors" can make just over $160.

    Teachers are not the ones who are overpaid. Making less than $100 a year with a doctoral degree is not that great. Benefits are fine of course (employer pays about 14% p.a for pension), but people who are in it only for the money choose other careers than teaching.
     
  14. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2009
    Messages:
    42,677
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    DenverPilot
    Might change that to say, "has been Chartered by Congress as the Air Force Auxiliary" not just "operated". Makes it sound like they have a choice. They don't.

    And Congress also removed the funding pipeline through the AF long long ago, and funds it directly. If the funding flowed through the USAF, they'd happily keep all of it and buy a single toilet seat or hammer for the annual CAP budget.

    The rank structure means exactly one thing: You met the requirements of that rank.

    In some specialties those requirements are fairly extensive. In others, not. You have to meet the requirements of your specialty track.

    Since you can change specialty tracks, someone would have to go look up how you earned it.

    But as a military grade structure, no. It doesn't work and never has. Volunteers don't have much reason to take orders from anyone, if they don't want to. They can just leave.

    You're quoting Ben from February and he hasn't been here in months. You resurrected a very dead thread.

    Same thing: Ben isn't here.
     
  15. bflynn

    bflynn En-Route

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Messages:
    3,329
    Location:
    Fuquay Varina, NC
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Brian Flynn
    That is their right. I am quite familiar with the argument, but it isn't going to change. They obviously aren't bothered too much by it or else they would be outsiders.

    Rank is some small indication of knowledge, but we know that experience and operating are what counts and we know who those people are.
     
  16. ircphoenix

    ircphoenix Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2016
    Messages:
    2,364
    Location:
    Redondo Beach, CA
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    ircphoenix
    My experience with my local CAP..

    Me: "Hey, I'm interested in joining."

    Them: "Okay."

    Me: "...So what do I need to do?"

    Them: "I'll call you Monday night."

    Me: "Unfortunately I work Monday night. Would Monday morning or Tuesday work for you?" *no reply* "Hi. Just checking in. Was wondering about that phone call." *no reply* "I'm still interested in joining. Please let me know how what I need to do."

    and like that...

    [​IMG]

    he's gone.
     
  17. brian109

    brian109 Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2015
    Messages:
    168
    Location:
    knoxville
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Brian
    I'm just here eating my popcorn. Can't we all just fly and get along
     
  18. jimson

    jimson Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2015
    Messages:
    134
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    jimson
    Sorry, I got it mixed up with the more recent one.
     
  19. MichaelO

    MichaelO Filing Flight Plan

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2007
    Messages:
    9
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Michael

    There's no "cons", per se. If you don't like the outfit you're with, just quit. no biggie.

    It's all local, everyone is different, squadrons are different depending on mission. Some have cadets, some are senior only, and all have planes. Go to a local meeting, see if it's a match or not. Easy-peasy.
     
  20. sgenie

    sgenie Filing Flight Plan

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2014
    Messages:
    23
    Location:
    New Zealand
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Genie
    I fly for Auckland Air Patrol, New Zealand Coastguard and I love it. Great time, great aircraft, great people - my only wish is to fly more often (no ill-wish here, though!) :)