Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Thinking over the Palin pick

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I won’t say much more about this: the press and indeed her own state are busily toting up the drawbacks of her being Vice President. But this post by Joe Klein and this post by Steve Benen made me realize what’s up: McCain was a fighter pilot, not a bomber pilot. Bombers are crew-operated airplanes (I’m thinking WWII here, when the studies were done), and bombers fly in formation as part of a group. A bomber pilot was in those days a methodical, systematic, careful man: he was selected for those attributes. He also was a good manager—works well with others, has a crew that is loyal and respects him, and plays his part in the overall bombing mission.

A fighter pilot, OTOH, had just a wingman and was generally a daredevil sort of personality, willing to take chances to get the kill. In dogfights, there was not formation flying, and the willingness to take chances increased one’s survival odds. The last thing a pilot should be in a dogfight is predictable.

For a fighter pilot, the best defense is a good offense. For a bomber pilot, the best defense is to stay in formation so that the other bombers could provide supporting fire (and your own bomber’s gunners could support them) and provide a steady firing platform for the bomber’s gunners, who were responsible for the defense. The pilot left the combat to the gunners and focused on getting his bomb load to the target and then getting back.

For a president, one would want a bomber pilot, not a fighter pilot. For an entrepreneur, the fighter pilot might represent the better mindset.

Written by Leisureguy

30 August 2008 at 11:22 am

Posted in Election, GOP

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