RAAF Radschool Association


Vol 32

August, 2010

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Sadly, in the few months since our last issue, we have once again lost some very good mates.


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We've got our lovely Page 3 girl again, and some photos of courses from long ago, plus a photo of some old Phan Rang war horses.


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Karinne Cilento

Sam Houliston

With Office 2010 just released, Sam tells us where we can get a copy and at a very reasonable price, and if you've just updated to Windows 7, you might want to bring back some XP menus - if so, Sam tells you how.


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We have the results of our TV survey, and John Mackesy tells us about his pet 618T. And, if you like music where you can understand the words and sing them aloud in public, then that authority on old stuff, Laurie Lindsay, has just the site for you.


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Laurie Lindsay

Ted's got some good advise on what to do if your snags catch fire on the kitchen stove and if you're an old codger like he is and you're over 60, you should join the Seniors' Club. Ted tells you how.


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Gary Kimberley tells us his story, and shares his experiences living and working in Vung Tau where he had many memorable moments flying the Caribou.


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Gary Kimberley

Allan George

Trust the Chinese to invent a train that doesn't stop - see it here and if you're about to trade in that digital photo copier, you should read this first.


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This is the first of what will become a regular column on Health and Life Style issues. This issue we discuss the recent Federal Budget and what it means to you and me.


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John Laming

In John Laming's excellent book, "Tales of the South Pacific" he talks about the old Lincoln, we've pinched that bit and you can read it here.


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The Djinnang people got together again in May, and we've got some photos.


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John McAllister and Jeanette Kiergaard

The RAAF Engineer Officers' Association got together for their mid year luncheon in June and Noel Hadfield sent us some pics.


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We're looking for a few people, perhaps you can help.


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Your say

This is where you have your say. We look forward to getting your letters - so please keep them coming.


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If you've got a reunion coming up, or if you've got some news, let us know and we'll publicise it.


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Officers - who needs them???


A few of us were sitting around a camp fire recently, cooking a bit of meat, having a drink or two and telling a few yarns and as often happens, late into the evening, with a few aboard, we set about solving a lot of the world's problems. One topic that came up and which caused a bit of heated debate was the way the Air Force is (or in our case was) run.


Next day I got to thinking about our 'intelligent' discussion from the previous night, and I think we might have hit on something. None of us could understand why officers were needed in today's modern technological Air Force. All the inclusion of Officers in today's Air Force seems to do, as far as we could see, is divide the Air Force into two separate classes. It's a form of segregation. It just doesn't make sense. Why should a (for instance) Pilot Off EquipO have authority over a Flt Sgt Sumpie. If push came to shove, neither could do the other's job so why is one given so much authority over the other. Is it a big stick thing, do the powers that be think that the only way to get men and women to do their job is to 'order' them around. The civvy contractors that do the major servicings on the RAAF's aircraft don't work like that, yet they get the job done and do it well. Job satisfaction beats a big stick as an incentive every time.


Surely it's not a pay thing??  We all understand that different jobs demand and deserve different pay rates, but you don't need an officer class for that - firms like GMH, Caltex, BHP etc have thousands of workers, all on different pay rates, yet they don't have 'classes' of employees. And, funnily enough, all these thousands of people know what their job is and get on and do it without the presence of an officer - how is that possible??


Is it a case of "It's always been that way!!" - could be. Years ago all aspects of life were very class conscious, from the King down, we just evolved that way. But not today - we've outgrown that. In today's RAAF, with all its sophisticated equipment, the job is the important thing - surely. When the crew of a C-17 leaves an airport for a 4,000 Klms flight over water, their only concern should be whether the ground crew serviced their aircraft properly, not that some impudent avionics tech had on dirty shorts or didn't salute correctly or didn't call me Sir!! 


But it happens.


Is it perhaps kudos?? Are officers needed because people like being and playing Officers?? If so, why not have everyone an officer. We personally know of a women, married to an officer, who used to introduce herself as Mrs Sqn Ldr XYZ.


Why should a group of people, all with the same purpose, be divided into two segregated classes. Each class will certainly contain some very talented people, yet because of the structure, one class cannot fully utilise the talents available in the other. We have fond memories of squadron detachments where one or more aircraft, with their relevant air and ground crews, would be away from base for two or more weeks. All personnel worked as a team, everyone helped everyone, rank was acknowledged but not enforced, people worked, lived, ate and socialised together and the job got done very smoothly and very efficiently with each man relying on and respecting the other's skill. For that reason, Detachments always ran a lot better than normal squadron activity back at base.


When you think about it - why have rank at all???


Who knows, perhaps one day.......


We'd love to know your thoughts on the matter - please drop us a note telling us what you think.





We recently applied for a grant under the Commonwealth's Veteran and Community Grants Program to enable us to purchase a new computer and printer. The little Toshiba is making hard work of it, trying to juggle Frontpage 2003, Paint Shop Pro, Office and Excel 2007 and Windows Commander while trying to put together this magazine and occasionally it digs in its heels and refuses to go any further. We submitted the application back in April, and laughingly were told at the time that it would be processed in a few months, the only thing that would hold it up would be an early election.


As they say, the rest is history.





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