Leadership Critique Censored on CAP Subreddit

By CAP Members | Reddit

[Editor’s Note: We received this submission today from an AuxBeacon Reader and a Civil Air Patrol Redditor.]

Attention AuxBeacon Editor(s):

Your staff and contributors are right on target with regard to the cover-up of corruption and failed leadership in the Civil Air Patrol. An important comment from Hyperion_Might detailing reasons for membership decline was recently deleted from the Civil Air Patrol subreddit. We are sending you the before and after pictures so that you can expose this to the remnant Civil Air Patrol membership at large.

The comment was made in reply to CAP’s National Recruiting & Retention Manager Lt Col Darin Ninness who stated that

“We’re not seeing a “massive drop” in recruiting & retention. Over time our recruiting (ie. “new members”) and end strength have varied up and down, but our retention levels have remained fairly flat. At the moment, we’re actually doing a slightly better job of retention, but over the past year, the number of new members we’ve recruited nationally has been down…”

Hyperion_Might 2Lt responded with

[–]Hyperion_Might 2Lt

The same as every other organization: poor leadership.

The ones who tend to stay in CAP long enough to reach the positions powerful enough to change things are often the same ones who find the current status-quo just fine; the ones who want to change things for the better are quickly run out of CAP or break within a year or two. If you rock the boat, you are targeted.

My SQ/CC personally warned me to leave things alone when I reported a cadet contacting me anonymously about a cadet protection policy violation in another squadron. The reason I should leave things alone? The cadet “may be a trouble maker”. Thankfully I was able to find a way to help the cadet and stay within CPP compliance with the difficult nature, but that was a wake up call and a frustrating time.

My GP/CC has refused to take action after a SM reported our SQ/CC for inappropriate romantic remarks, including calling her on her private number to confess his love to her and later refused to promote her for 6 months after she reported him. She has now left CAP after feeling unsafe visiting the main squadron.

My WG/CC has refused to grant my flight a charter status as they don’t believe we deserve one even though for two years now we’ve been ready to separate from my squadron. We have a facility, personnel, uniforms, and experience… but they still find random things to deny us. Unofficially I have been informed by personnel in wing that our flight is shit-listed by the WG/CC for some reason and now they basically ignore us.

CAP is dying. The leadership needs to be held accountable. But they won’t.


This comment has since been deleted in the subreddit.  Why?  Because bullies, liars, forgers, sociopaths, pedophiles and unsafe pilots permeate this sick organization.


[Editor’s Note: Other comments that support the original are provided below.]

[–]RedSnoopy Lt Col[S]
There are a ton of intricacies with CAP, just like the Air Force. What I do find is many commanders aren’t selected from a pool of qualified candidates. Rather they are the ones that have reluctantly agreed after no one else wanted the job. Many of them Ill prepared to take command. I just saw in your comments a CPP, an EO, and an IG complaint. Commanders should be able to take action. And just because there might be work involved, does not give them a reason to ignore or turn a blind eye.


[–]in_the_corner C/Maj
I agree with your sentiment, and can relate to your experiences. I’ve had several experiences within the past two years similar to yours in my wing, and people whom I talk with feel the same frustration. Unfortunately there is cronyism, and it’s gonna take a long time for these issues to resolve. If I knew how to change it I would.


[–]kcebnaes Maj
Yes. Totally seeing this problem. I am in charge of our wing’s smallest group(numbers-wise.) We’re so small because of poor recruiting and retention efforts in the past. Some root causes: poor leadership on all levels(in regards to R&R); over-stating CAP; giving false promises(promotions that are against the regs, “you’re unit will have an airplane to use however you want,” etc.) and a few more. What are we doing right? We have a kick ass cadet program, when done properly. We have the ability to send kids up in the sky and show them a love of aviation. We can assist the Air Force and local authorities with search and rescue efforts, and disaster relief type stuff. What are we doing wrong? We don’t follow our own rules. We let things go, that we shouldn’t turn a blind eye to. Like I already mentioned, we give false promises of things we shouldn’t. We aren’t encouraging our members to stay or move up in ranks. We encourage laziness(members barely show up, care, or want to participate.)

What am I learning? I’m learning exactly what not to do, and to implement policies and a new culture in my group that is turning the ship around, away from the waterfall of death.


[–]neuromancer1987
Speaking from personal knowledge, the quality of the CAP “experience” has taken a huge nosedive in the last 10 years. This is at least true for my locale here in the greater Los Angeles area. I am about 30 now and I was recently considering rejoining as a Senior Member. After seeing the sorry state of affairs at so many formerly great squadrons, I decided against it. I mean, its really abysmal: a lot of squadrons have shut down or are barely functioning in no small part due to absent or neglectful leadership. I’ll take my lumps for not wanting to be an agent of change, but why would anybody want to be a part of this? I understand Lt Col Ninness’ argument above that we are simply in some sort of recession… but, I don’t think so. This is something else entirely that is happening in this region. Perhaps it is the zeitgeist of the anti-military, pro-stay-at-home-on-your-Xbox mentality, but I think CAP may have its greatest days behind it.


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5 Comments on "Leadership Critique Censored on CAP Subreddit"

  1. It’s the same thing on CAPTalk… if I would post anything remotely critical of CAP I would get “piled on” by the cheerleaders for CAP… which is what that site is for, cheerleaders.

    I have never posted on the Reddit site but it sounds like much the same mentality.

  2. IG investigations into CAP leadership corruption have been destroyed because their sustained findings so badly embarrassed the US Air Force & Civil Air Patrol.

    Member complaints were deliberately blocked by CAP-USAF’s Col Paul D. Gloyd II & his staff during the 2011-2015 run-up to the Total Force Announcement. We are sending evidence of this under separate cover.

    Younger members attempting to publicly defend their leadership in the Civil Air Patrol Subreddit & in Captalk forums have yet to experience the vile tactics & reprisals suffered by those who reported crimes & regulatory violations up their chain of command & then on to congress or local media when CAP National took no action.

    The most glaring case is the Ed Zayas forgery and cover-up attempt with threats and reprisals against FAA check pilots (Jack Dixon) and commanders (Bobby Hill) in Hawaii Wing. The back-stories behind recent Civil Air Patrol suicides (more than three) & the three former National Inspector Generals (Merle Starr, Ken Parris, Tom Kettell) are also important for newer members to understand.

    Ombudsman & exposé sites like Blue Penguin, News of the Force, Sky Graffiti, AuxBeacon & all the others are a very predictable reaction to widespread, uncorrected abuses in an organization that uses state and federal tax dollars to the personal benefit of some while harming others.

    • I second the observations made by GreyFox.

      I have served in Civil Air Patrol for over 3 decades, on the ground and in the air. I have seen it all and most recently AEM teachers who became full members and then learned too much about the safety problems, accidents, failures, cover-ups and illegalities. They get pushed-out and replaced with naive toadies.

      I am sorry to say this, but the organization cannot be defended or saved through some Phoenix Plan because there are sociopaths malingering deep within it and around it who have learned “techniques” that are not honorable, not at all true blue.

  3. RedditorAlpha | February 14, 2017 at 21:27 | Reply

    Editors, you should know that the CAPster running the Civil Air Patrol Reddit is stating that Hyperion_Might deleted his/her own comment. He’s also claiming that your AuxBeacon site is a CAP “hate” site for aggregating and hosting all the genuine news articles about crashes, abuses and suicides in CAP that their commanders and legal officers try to have removed from other content providers.

    If Hyperion_Might felt pressure from Civil Air Patrol members to delete his damming comment on CAP leadership wouldn’t that fall under self-censorship imposed under duress? Who has the power to do that to another?

    Check your email, we sent you all the commentary and we recommend you run it through a psycho-linguistics risk filter because of the language used.

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