Words of Advice:

"Never Feel Sorry For Anyone Who Owns an Airplane."-- Tina Marie

If Something Seems To Be Too Good To Be True, It's Best To Shoot It, Just In Case." -- Fiona Glenanne

Flying the Airplane is More Important than Radioing Your Plight to a Person on the Ground
Who is Incapable of Understanding or Doing Anything About It.
" -- Unknown

"There seems to be almost no problem that Congress cannot, by diligent efforts and careful legislative drafting, make ten times worse." -- Me

"What the hell is an `Aluminum Falcon'?" -- Emperor Palpatine

"Eck!" -- George the Cat

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Navy Collisions

Included here are links to the reports of the collisions of the USS Fitzgerald and the USS John S. McCain.

There are things in the reports that are inexcusable: Ignorance of the nautical rules of the road among the Fizgerald's wardroom. Failure to understand the traffic routing scheme on the part of the Fitzgerald. Screwing up the steering system on the McCain, a failure that began with the CO and worked its way down. The Bridge and CIC teams on both ships screwed the pooch.

There are also bright spots. Both ships' crew responded well to the collisions. Damage control teams stood up quickly and effectively. The Navy has emphasized damage control readiness and training for decades and it paid off.

But frankly, it's still a whitewash job. The reports dump all of the blame on the crews of the ships without an even passing look at why the ships got to where they were. It was not just failure by watchstanders and their respective captains and XOs, the rot goes far deeper.

Gentle Readers, the Navy has 84 surface combatants, not counting the DDG-1000 and the execrable Little Crappy Ships. That is 84 surface warships, total, of which, maybe 25-30% are in the yards for overhaul. Thirty years ago, the Navy had more than that number of frigates, which made up half of the total number of surface combatants (which doesn't include carriers and subs).

We have ships making back-to-back deployments. The time back home (usually less than six months) is never enough to do the training and refitting required for the next deployment.

My bottom line is this: We are asking our military, not just the Navy, to do too much with too little. The congressional leadership is too focused on stupid shit and cutting taxes for the rich, instead of doing its Constitutionally-mandated job to provide for the Army and Navy (Article I, Section 8). The fuckwads in Congress want to have a global military without paying the real costs of it. The careerists in the services, those wearing stars, do not have the spine to stand up and say "Sirs, unable."

Either we sack up and realize that having a global military is going to require fiscal sacrifices or we should pull back and revert to Jeffersonian levels. Paying for repairs maintenance and training isn't as glamorous or as popular as buying new and shiny airplanes, but Jesus God, people, pull your fucking heads out of your asses for once!

If you are in the Congress or their staffers, or if you are in Ft. Fumble: Do your fucking jobs for once in your miserable lives. You ask much of those serving, it's time that you stand up for them.


Old NFO said...

Good points all! And don't forget the unfunded maintenance shortfalls, lack of IMA and SIMA support, and 'mandated' bilat exercises foisted on the Navy and other services by higher ups...

CenterPuke88 said...

Jesus, what a sorry read that was. The Fitz's bridge crew was terribly negligent in ignoring the Standing Orders and not scanning to starboard, but wow. The McCain report reads like a comedy of errors with deaths.

3383 said...

I think everyone in power knows. But they are rewarded for buying shiny pretties with our money, not for the non-glamorous stuff that does all the work.

And when you say "surface combatants except for DDG-1000 and LCSs", you repeat yourself.

B said...

I will agree with you re: funding for the military.

But lets not forget all that money that goes to social programs.

Obamaphones (actually Bush) so that our less well off brethren can post on Facebook and all.
Free birth control so Tanisha can spend buy one more drink at the club a month....
BarryCare so that we all have the same level of expensive, crappy insurance instead of only those who don't work having crappy insurance.
All this takes money the COULD be used towards the military.

Taxing the "rich" can only go so far. They already pay most of the bills,, if you bother to look.

CenterPuke88 said...

When the richest 1% in society have about half the wealth, yea, they are gonna pay more.

Funny how posting on Facebook (and seeking and applying for jobs) is limited to those with some money.

Free birth control is bad because it lets women get ahead and reduces children living in poverty?

Medical coverage, kneecapped by Republican lawsuits and actions, for all is a bad thing because the poor don't deserve it.

We must spend this money on the military because...er, underwear = ? = profit.

Comrade Misfit said...

Jesus, the same old shit. "Tax cuts for the rich are good and let's smash the poor down a little bit more."

Let's see, who was the president who thought that poor people having phones was a good idea? It was some guy who used to act in a lot of cowboy movies. His name'll come to me.

CenterPuke88 said...

Don't worry, Comrade, he was a RINO...

Dark Avenger said...

You might do better to look outside the RW echo chambers and discover the
truth about such things as Obamaphones, B.


Dark Avenger said...

Oh, and B, you don’t think poor white people could use birth control as well?

B said...

If you took the increase in spending for the "Poor" (note that today's "poor" standard of living is better than "middle Class" in the 80's) from 2000 to 2015 and applied those funds to the military, you could get all your wishes granted.

At what point does a person not have to pay into the society that protects him/her? How much support and free shit does he/she need and at what point do we expect her/him to try to feed, clothe, and support themselves?

What percentage of our tax revenues should go to pay for folks who won't take advantage of the opportunities our society offers to allow one to have the freedom to succeed? How much sponging off of others should we allow?

Why does it always come to "We've spent all the money we took last time, now e gotta have some more and we need to take it from the folks who have succeeded (again), and have to give it to those folks who KEEP making bad decisions in life?

CenterPuke88 said...

It's funny, or rather sad, that it's always the fault of the poor. "Bad decisions" should be a patented Republican phrase, because they wear that shit out. The problem is study after study shows the "bad decisions" are generally caused by environmental or societal factors. B. loves to explain how he tried to help people who would be on welfare and yet afford $300 sneakers. Ok, I'll bite that the decision doesn't seem rational, but how about we look deeper? Instead of writing off an entire class or race based upon an example or two, why not look at what study after study shows, that the decision on those kicks is entirely rational within the structure that society has imposed upon the poor.

As for funding, how about we redirect some funds from incarcerating the largest percentage of our population in the world? For those playing at home, we incarcerate at 5 times the world average and 25% MORE than number two, Russia.

Why do we argue that poor in the United States isn't "really" poor because they have TV's? An inexpensive TV is a rational choice when it will distract those hungry kids, and the cost of the TV would only pay for a few meals? Since when is the care the United State takes with regard to it's poor properly compared to how the poor are treated in "X"? By that argument, women in the U.S. should be happy that can drive, why should they vote?

Why spend more on the military? We're already spending the fourth highest percentage of GDP behind Saudi Arabia, Israel and Russia (The first two are allies/not threats and the Russian spending is an unsustainable spike). We could match China and the others below us with a 33% reduction in defense spending, especially if we spent more wisely rather than as the Comgress directs to fund their district.

U.S. tax rates are midpoint or lower (varies, depending on the tax and entity) so the over-taxed refrain is simple bullshit.

Comrade Misfit said...

GOP Playbook:

Step 1- Cut taxes for the rich.

Step 2- Complain that there's no longer enough money to go around.

Step 3- Cut programs that sever poor, elderly and disabled people.

Step 4- Go back to step 1.

Thanks to Bush41, we were well on our way to Federal budget solvency until Bush43's tax cuts. But Papa Bush was probably the last rational Republican to hold down the job. The Republicans sent him and the rest a clear message: Responsible governance will not be tolerated.

Republicans love them some tax cuts, even when putting wars on the national credit card. Remember the words of Voldemort Cheney: "Reagan proved that deficits don't matter." And they don't, not to Republicans when their guy is in office.

Your side has been babbling about the Federal debt for the last eight years and now your side wants to slice taxes again, all to benefit Trump personally? For make no mistake, that's just what he's doing.

So no, B, don't lecture me about fiscal discipline. Your party wrote the book on irrational budget behavior.

Dark Avenger said...

B reminds me of the Bob and Ray paperclip factory routine:


Comrade Misfit said...

DA, thanks for sending me down the Bob & Ray rabbit hole.