Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by Winchester 73, Apr 17, 2008.
Could their management still be dumb as a stump? I can believe it.
Wait a minute...You're going to pay them to let you be an air marshall?
The only thing that has changed post 9/11 with regard to homeland security is additional baggage screening at the airport. We are essentially no safer today than pre 9/11 and there is no plan for coordinating effectively between federal, state and local first responders after a major attack and we certainly don’t need to mention the shortage of equipment & training for first responders. The Air Marshals’ are mostly ineffective. The program is PR feel-good stuff for the public.
Which, of course, is why it won't happen. It doesn't create a new agency and give some political appointee a big budget and a huge department to control, so it has no sales appeal inside the beltway.
WANT the best & toughest to be in the U.S. Air Marshal Service. But, since we're still operating in a free-market economy, we've got to PAY them at least as well as the Private Sector is willing to offer. As the old racing saying reminds us..."Speed costs money. How fast do you wanna' go?"
Nice Mad Max quote.
Pay isn't really a great factor as far as these guys leaving the FAMs. A lot of the initial post-9/11 FAMs left other federal LE positions and received some sort of pay incentive to do so.
A ton of the FAMs came from the Border Patrol right after 9/11. They were promised and, for a time, received a pretty nice deal. It went something like 3 days of long flights, 1 day of training, and 1 day of admin time per work week. They were taking the kinds of flights that would be most risky to have hijacked (big plane, lots of passengers, and lots of fuel).
Later, some FBI higher-ups took over the reigns and wanted to boost numbers. So, instead of doing fewer flights on large juicy targets, they were taking lots of flights on commuters. Eg from Las Vegas to Phoenix to LA to Reno, back to Vegas. Also, their admin and training days were cut down drastically, in order to get in more short flights.
So, numbers up, morale drastically down, and mission not really any better accomplished than before.
That's pretty universal, according to the 20 or so former FAMs that have I've spoken with and know.
Mad Max stole the quote from the legendary Junior Johnson (who stole it from someone even older) .
You obviously know a LOT more about the Air Marshall situation than do I. But the various (all) Government Service organizations need to realize what we employers in the Private Sector already know. If you want to RECRUIT & KEEP the best pros available, you've got to PAY & TREAT them...like you KNOW they're the BEST. You won't fool them & they won't fool themselves. Skilled, smart, honest, capable folks are getting harder & harder to find. Ditto for people to MANAGE those folks. When you throw into the mix the general apathy of Public Service Administrators AND the legislators who fund them...it's no surprise the morale & performance levels are disappointing to both the Marshals AND the people who depend on them. Again, it's bureaucrats (lower & higher level) who keep the front-line from doing their job. It almost always is! Leadership (like crap) runs downhill. Responsibility, however, runs from bottom to top.
After the course work was done we all did some informal shooting. FWIW, the FAM guy was absolutely lights out. One of the best draw and fire shooters I had ever seen.
So go ahead, rag all you want. But if you're on a flight and trouble breaks out, you'd want this guy on board for sure.
Don't mess with the Zohan.
Where in this thread has this been said or even hinted at? The discussion of physical fitness standards was raised in the context of other sets of law enforcement standards that have been lowered to let less-qualified candidates qualify. The original post on the subject had nothing to do with tying physical fitness to shooting ability, and neither has any other post in this thread other than yours.
It's even more difficult when you consider that the average candidate isn't going to leave money on the table to become an air marshal. For a screener or a guard, a position as an air marshal isn't a pay cut. For your former soldier or former police officer, the air marshal service pays less than you could make in the private sector.
I haven't seen such a belief put forth. However...
I perfom fine motor tasks under significant stress routimely as part of my job, often after having to physically exert myself. A solid level of underlying physical fitness is a huge asset in being able to do so.
If a person wants to be able to accurately shoot when his symathetic nervous systen is all riles up, being in shape only makes sense. An employer looking for such has to set benchmarks and standards.
Anyone flown lately and experienced the low morale of airline employees ? Anyone had their bags lost ? Anyone experience slow and miserable service on board a long haul flight ? Anyone had their flight canceled and been rerouted through God knows where to get to their destination ?
Forget it. I wouldn't want this job for nothing. There was a time when flying was really something to experience. You dressed up to board a plane and once on board was treated with respect, plenty of smiles and great service.
Now days, because of low fares, you have the Greyhound bus crowd flying in pajama's, some are half drunk, screaming for service and acting like spoiled brats. The rest wouldn't understand airline travel etiquette if it bit them in the a*&.
No thanks, they can keep their FAM job. I have a lot of respect for these guys and gals who do it. I get stressed out of my mind flying from FL to Michigan from just wondering if I will arrive during that week and where my bags may end up.
The Air(head) Marshall that I know couldn't poor manure out of a boot!
Most military and LEO personnel would experience a significant pay increase in accepting a position as a FAM, if not in the first few years, over all. If you see a FAM, you're seeing a low 6 figure g-man, most likely.
Is there an avenue available in the private sector for former military and LEO personnel? Certainly, and the incentives can be impressive. But there aren't that many such oportunities and... those taking them are typically out of the game at that point, anyway. They are "golden parachute" positions, more or less, for the few. IN the game? There's a relatively short list of non-supervisory 6 figure LEO jobs and FAMs are on it.
But there's more to life than pay, and that's the root of any hiring and retention problems the FAM program may or may not have.
All you need is a plane full of falling plates...
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