No Bucks – No Buck Rogers

By Major Patrick Westmoreland

The quote, “no bucks…no Buck Rogers” comes from the movie and book, The Right Stuff by Tom Wolfe.  As a kid I watched this movie relentlessly as I dreamed of becoming a pilot.  I never realized just how true and applicable this quote was to become. 

While flying helicopters over “LA” or Lower Alabama, I was worried about applying my emergency procedures in simulated emergencies, while trying to navigate and eventually land all while using the correct verbiage, in word for word order with someone asking me unrelated questions about engine systems.  I was unconcerned about what an MDEP or FAD was.  To be honest, I didn’t know what an MDEP or a FAD was, I had never heard of it.  Nor did I really care how the fuel in my tanks got there; other than the guy with a hose at the airfield we landed at for lunch.  A swipe of the card and we were on our way, what a deal, I’m getting paid to spend Uncle Sam’s hard earned dollars.

In today’s Sequestration Era, the term ‘resource management’ is tossed around without regard to what it really means.  Many soldiers and civilians take it for granted that someone, somewhere, knows how to manage our financial resources.  This skill does not come easy and the Army, especially to the Army National Guard, and the ARNG is quickly realizing that it is beyond just the Finance Corps or their local Comptroller to work this issue; trained and proactive Resource Managers are needed everywhere and now. 

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