About John Q. Public

John Q. Public is a project designed to enliven and invigorate an unofficial conversation about airmen, airpower, and the United States Air Force. It's also, more generally, a site devoted to hosting and providing strong, well-written content on a wide range of subjects from leadership to strategy, airpower, and veteran issues. You can provide tips or story suggestions at john.public.1947@gmail.com.


In my post-service days, I've regularly been thanked by unassuming strangers for serving in defense of our country. Like so many others, I respond as graciously as I can while harboring a sometimes poorly-masked hesitance to accept such genuinely offered admiration. These strangers view veterans as a bloc. They don't grasp that we have our [...]

By | September 16th, 2017|Air Force / Air Power|13 Comments

Want to Solve the Shortage of O-4s? Here’s How

The Air Force likes to solve things with blunt force polices that carpet-bomb a problem rather than target it discriminately and precisely. This is especially true with personnel issues, which is partially why airmen are left feeling commoditized like interchangeable parts rather than individual human beings. For about the last 15 years, the staffs have [...]

By | September 15th, 2017|Air Force / Air Power|10 Comments

Air Force Lowers Promotion Standards to Address Officer Shortages

It's been a season of relative optimism about the future of the Air Force. But the service is still prone to bouts of myopic personnel mismanagement. It will occasionally belch out a policy so bad that it beggars belief.  Its latest epic gaffe will fix nothing and create lasting dysfunction ... all the while eroding [...]

By | September 15th, 2017|Air Force / Air Power|14 Comments

Appeals Court Finds Judge Abused Discretion, Reverses Lieutenant’s Sex Assault Conviction

Second Lieutenant Paul Leonhardt was found guilty of a single count of sexual assault in a December, 2015 court-martial convened at Eielson Air Force Base. Over his consistent claims of innocence, Leonhardt was sentenced to five months in prison and dismissed from the Air Force. Dismissal makes former airmen felons for all intents and purposes [...]

By | September 9th, 2017|Air Force / Air Power|10 Comments

Will Reality Winner Walk Because of FBI “Mistake”?

A recent article shared to JQP Facebook from affiliate site Popular Military asserted that the FBI made a "mistake" in the process of arresting Reality Winner, an Air Force veteran and former government contractor charged with unlawful disclosure of classified information. The comment section lit up with legal analysis, some from laywers and some from [...]

By | September 2nd, 2017|Government and Society|4 Comments

Officer Dismissed Over Consensual Friendship

Take a look at this slice of Air Force "justice" ... chronicled recently in Stars and Stripes. Summary: Lt. Col. Denis Paquette, a deployed squadron commander, was convicted at court martial for an unprofessional relationship with an enlisted airman. He was dismissed from the Air Force after 18 years of service, losing all eligibility for [...]

By | August 29th, 2017|Air Force / Air Power|24 Comments

Quick Hit: Air Force Continues Trying to Solve Pilot Shortage With Small Ideas

In its latest attempt to stem a gushing arterial bleed with a Hello Kitty bandaid, the Air Force is now offering more flight pay to aircrew members and inviting retired geezers to come back on active duty for 12 months to hold down swivel chairs on superfluous staffs. The scant details are mentioned in Stars [...]

By | August 26th, 2017|Sidetones|1 Comment