Heading Out

Seeking the winds that help to sail on Shakespeare's tide.

Saturday, July 24, 2004

A nagging puzzle

Thinking to start the day restfully I poured cup of tea and started in with the papers. And then I saw that there is a consolidated site for all the Democratic Convention bloggers, and so I meandered over. Earlier this morning it wasn't that busy (though it now is). And as I was strolling through it I saw a comment that one of kos readers was still working on the Lt. Bush story. The site allows a download of the new release of the pay info so, being a curious soul, I downloaded it.

As I looked at and tried to remember what it means I saw that in the comments on the kos site there was a reference that explains the numbers. Well its fairly long, but let me see if I can make this part of the story short.

When then Lt Bush joined the Texas Guard he promised to serve six years. For the first part of the time he was trained and did all the right things, but something seems to have gone wrong early in 1972. In that period he did not take a required medical (on one of the sites there is the form ordering him to take it, signed if I remember right by a General). Well he dropped out and went to Alabama where he worked on a political campaign. The debate is about what he did militarily in Alabama since he was still supposed to be showing up for training. The forms released this week show that he was in training for one weekend in October and one in November, in the entire period between April and the following January. But what I wanted to check was the code used for the way he spent the time. As the glcq site points out the 22 designation shows that what he had was Unit Training Assemblies, which are held every month, and which, by law, he had to attend for 90% of the time. In other words between April and January there were at least 8 of these UTA's and so he had to attend at least 7 of them. But the record shows that he only attended 2.

But it is more interesting than that. Because the designation apparently given for the two weekends he attended (one being a long weekend of 4 days) is that he took special training rather than showing up for the official assembly (perhaps because the UTA wasn't being held when he was available). But the question that glcq brings up relates to when he got paid. According to the pay records he wasn't paid until 1973, and the USAF generally (like everybody else) pays you at the end of the month, or the month after you do the work.

Which makes it odd. What makes it more odd is that everyone is saying that this is a new release when, as the glcq site shows, it was part of the original package, and does not include all the supporting documentation that a file of this type should have. Odder and odder. And in the end he appears to have only served 5 of his six years even if this period is considered as serving. I keep following this since it is like a detective story where you really have to see the evidence to make your own judgement on what it means and in this case it is all gradually coming out.

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