Sunday, October 31, 2010

... and it made it to home plate even ....

Sigh.

Perfect? No. But ..... sigh.

Sunday Funnies

For Halloween I figured I would do something different. This is part of an email that is worth a chuckle. In essense - the Naval Academy Preparatory School (NAPS) uses standing Midshipmen from USNA as "sponsors" - so to speak. Those who go to NAPS are "napsters."

Well - attention to detail and hiliarty ensues. In a note to sponsors - some good advice,
If there is an accidental pairing of a male napster with a female midn or vice versa just assign a new midn and email me. Apparently there were some very creative names that made the determination of the napsters gender quite difficult to figure out.
Creative - indeed.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

A very scary Halloween, on Midrats

When you mention the possibility of an Electro Magnetic Pulse attack (EMP) - people have a reaction of, "What?" - either that or they get all fidgety or roll their eyes. Is the EMP threat trick or treat?

Join my co-host and EagleOne and me this Sunday, Halloween, from 5-6pm EST to discuss the issue with our guests Jason Sigger and James Carafano.

Our first guest will be Jason Sigger, a defense analyst in the Washington DC area. He was formerly an Army chemical officer before becoming a consultant in the mid-1990s. His specialty is chemical and biological defense issues. He runs a blog called the Armchair Generalist that discusses military issues from a progressive point of view.

For the second half of the hour, James Carafano, Ph.D., Deputy Director, The Kathryn and Shelby Cullom Davis Institute for International Studies and Director, Douglas and Sarah Allison Center for Foreign Policy Studies at The Heritage Foundation.

Of his many works, Carafano's most recent book is Private Sector, Public Wars: Contractors in Combat - Afghanistan, Iraq, and Future Conflicts (Praeger, 2008), a rigorous study of contractors' role on the battlefield and their impact on military effectiveness and civil society.

Carafano's current book project is a history of the modern military. He is editing a new book series, The Changing Face of War, which examines how emerging political, social, economic and cultural trends will affect the nature of armed conflict.

Carafano joined Heritage as a senior research fellow in 2003. He had been a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, a Washington policy institute dedicated to defense issues.

In his Army career, Carafano rose to the rank of lieutenant colonel. He served in Europe, Korea and the United States. His assignments included head speechwriter for the Army Chief of Staff, the service's highest-ranking officer. Before retiring, Carafano was executive editor of Joint Force Quarterly, the Defense Department's premiere professional military journal.

Join us live if you can, and pile in with the usual suspects in the chat room during the show where you can offer your own questions and observations to our guests. If you miss the show or want to catch up on the shows you missed - you can always reach the archives at blogtalkradio - or set yourself to get the podcast on iTunes.

Listen to Midrats on Blog Talk Rad

Friday, October 29, 2010

Do you like your computer?

Now imagine you can't.

It is Valour-IT time folks. Here's the backgrounder;
Soldiers Angels Project VALOUR-IT TEAM NAVY

Project Valour-IT, in memory of SFC William V. Ziegenfuss, helps provide voice-controlled/adaptive laptop computers and other technology to support Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines recovering from hand wounds and other severe injuries. Technology supplied includes:
  • Voice-controlled Laptops - Operated by speaking into a microphone or using other adaptive technologies, they allow the wounded to maintain connections with the rest of the world during recovery.
  • Wii Video Game Systems - Whole-body game systems increase motivation and speed recovery when used under the guidance of physical therapists in therapy sessions (donated only to medical facilities).
  • Personal GPS - Handheld GPS devices build self-confidence and independence by compensating for short-term memory loss and organizational challenges related to severe TBI and severe PTSD.
For more info, click here.

learn more

Fullbore Friday

I'm moody today.

When researching a larger story - in this case the week that was the Battle of Leyte Gulf - you can find a little vignette that in its own way is poignant. Even when it is the enemy - it makes you pause.

In less time than it took to develop the NWU, the Imperial Japanese Navy's Aircraft carrier
ZUIKAKU went from being one of the CV that attacked Pearl Harbor to - 2 years and 10 months later - the last of her kind.

She found herself at the rough end of
Halsey's Folly,
Ozawa's "Northern Force" comprised four aircraft carriers (Zuikaku — the last survivor of the six carriers that had attacked Pearl Harbor in 1941, the light carriers Zuihō, Chitose, and Chiyoda), two World War I battleships partially converted to carriers (Hyūga and Ise — the two after turrets had been replaced by a hangar, aircraft handling deck and catapult, but neither battleship carried any aircraft in this battle), three light cruisers (Ōyodo, Tama, and Isuzu), and nine destroyers. His force had only 108 aircraft.
...
The force which Halsey was taking north with him — three groups of Mitscher's Task Force 38 — was overwhelmingly stronger than the Japanese Northern Force. Between them, these groups had five large fleet carriers (Intrepid, Franklin, Lexington, Enterprise, and Essex), five light fleet carriers (Independence, Belleau Wood, Langley, Cabot, and San Jacinto), six battleships (Alabama, Iowa, Massachusetts, New Jersey, South Dakota, and Washington), eight cruisers (two heavy and six light), and more than 40 destroyers. The air groups of the 10 US carriers present contained a total of more than 600-1,000 aircraft.
At the tactical level - the results came as expected.

Things that come to mind: the desperation of the conversion of the HYŪGA AND ISE as Japan did not have the industrial base to do as we did and build proper CV.

The shortage of good if any aircraft - not to mention pilots - and the sad death of a storied Flag Ship ZUIKAKU. More than anything though - the lesson I take away is in a photograph.

Picture what was going on in the minds of these Sailors. As their Flag Ship sinks, the flag is lowered. A crystal clear, blue Pacific day.

Just ponder.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Deutschland über alles

Pick your leaders - pick your fate.
German unemployment fell slightly in October, dropping to its lowest level in 18 years as the impact of persistently strong growth in Europe's top economy continued to filter through to the jobs market.

The number of jobless fell by 3,000 to a seasonally adjusted 3.153 million, figures from the Labor Office showed on Thursday, while the headline level dipped to 2.945 million, confirming figures announced a day earlier.

The headline reading fell below the 3 million mark — a key political threshold — for the first time since November 2008, to its lowest point since October 1992.
... On an adjusted basis, the jobless rate held steady at 7.5 percent.
The German way ... the numbers speak for themselves. We went Left - and they did the economically right thing.
In June, the German government announced an austerity package Why has the German (and broader European) economy sizzled at the same time as the much touted “Summer of Recovery” in the U.S. has fizzled?
...
As economist John Cochrane puts it, belief in the efficacy of government expenditure as economic stimulus requires a world where “people make plans to consume more, invest more, and pay more taxes with the same income (emphasis added).” The “same income” point is significant because an increase in consumption for a given amount of national income naturally results in a larger trade deficit. The increase in aggregate consumption not only increases spending on imports, but also increases domestic spending on goods and services that would have otherwise been exported (see Tony Makin’s chapter).

Although no breakdown is yet available, most analysts anticipate that a major driver of the German economic expansion was an increase in net exports. Part of this is due to the decline in the value of the euro, which made German-produced goods less expensive, but some of it is directly attributable to stimulus spending in the U.S. and China. When a hypercompetitive, high-end manufacturing base like Germany sees major trading partners increase government expenditure, the optimal policy response is to do nothing. Some of the increase in external demand will translate to increased exports, providing a boost to the domestic economy without a penny of additional borrowing.
...
While the Obama Administration’s critique is reasonable from a raw arithmetic standpoint, blaming Germany’s robust growth on its failure to stimulate domestic consumption rings hollow. As the International Monetary Fund (IMF) explains in its 2010 review of the German economy, “Germany’s strong export orientation stems from the openness of its economy, its long-standing manufacturing traditions and its competitiveness in global markets.” After enduring nearly a decade of slow growth and low inflation, Germany has disinflated its way to an extremely competitive position thanks to painful labor market reforms. The cost of one hour of labor in Germany is now extremely low relative to the economic value added in that hour. Better coordination of public expenditures is not going to erase Germany’s huge competitive advantage in high-end manufacturing.

... that provided the private sector with a clear and unambiguous message that public debt levels would not grow unsustainably. This likely instilled confidence in the private sector by reducing households and businesses’ estimates of the burden of government, which leads to an increase in consumption and investment.
We can recover. All we need is the right leaders, the right policy, and time.

Sigh. They earned it.


You can use the scum in my retention pond ...

In an attempt to reduce the Navy's dependence on petroleum, engineers designed and built an experimental craft that runs on a blend of 50 per cent diesel and 50 per cent algae-based fuel.

The 49-foot command boat, which is intended for use in rivers and marshes, was tested at Norfolk Naval Station in Virginia, reaching a speed of 44.5 knots.
Ummmm ... biodiesel isn't really that new or transformational. Dude in town runs his Dodge on cook'n grease from a fish camp. Hush Puppy smell all up and down the street.

So, OK - interesting fun and all, but .... don't get all that excited.

Diversity Thursday II - USMC Boogaloo

The new Commandant of the Marine Corps, General James F. Amos has just questioned the integrity of every officer and NCO in the Marine Corps and has decided to make things better by lead the charge to bring back institutional racism - kind of.

Nice.

From the CMC's Planning Guidance's retention portion;
Improve Diversity Representation Throughout our Corps ACMC, with DC M&RA & CG MCRC in direct support - chair a comprehensive review of the current diversity posture of and issues within the Marine Corps. This review will aim to develop a comprehensive, institutional strategy:
1) to improve the accession, retention and promotion of qualified individuals and 2) to foster immediate and marked adjustments for improved recruitment of minority Marines (officer and enlisted) along with their career development and mentoring. Upon implementation of an approved Service-wide strategy generated from this study, senior leaders will conduct periodic accountability reviews with CMC. (Due: 18 Feb 11)
Let me translate for you:
1) We have not done enough to improve the metrics that the Diversity Bullies demand. Stop looking at the best recruits and rewarding the best Marines - focus on the sectarian metrics.
2) Do what ever you need to in order to make our metrics look better. Again, I don't care about the best - I just want you to make it look different than it is because others tell me I need to.

When it is all done, I am going to sit down with you and we are going to look at your metrics. If I don't see preferential treatment to those racial and ethnic groups that I approve of - then you will be held accountable. You're a Marine, you know what accountable means. So, throw away fairness - I want you to stop looking at your Marines as Marines, I want you to look at them based on their race, creed, color or national origin and evaluate them differently because of their DNA. I want the metrics changed. I don't want to hear about fairness, equality, or any irratitating truths about multi-racial Marines or racial self-identification fraud. No, I don't care. I just want the metrics on my Diversity slides changed.

Oh, and all the CMC who came before me didn't care about racial and ethnic minorities as much as I do. The did not conduct accountability reviews the way I will. I am better than they were. I think you might be a bigot - that is why I want to see your numbers. So, start acting like a bigot by counting your Marines by DNA type .... and make sure you are ranking Marines appropriately too. I want to see that as well.
Sad, isn't it? The USMC and General Amos are better than this - and I don't think he thinks this way, but this is how it reads. This AM I have already had Marines send it my way with that concern.

Good news is that it is bullet #2 under priority #4 - but it is ahead of Review and Improve Transition Assistance, Examine and Improve Reenlistment Procedures, Integrate Behavioral Health Efforts, and Improve Personnel Administration. Small blessings, I guess.

My money is that it had to be in there somewhere. In this environment, he would be calling fire on his own position if he didn't bring it up - but it still looks like throwing virgins in the volcano and will directly impact people's career in the zero sum came that it is, simply for sectarian reasons.

Sorry CMC to personalize it - but it is in your P&G. Otherwise, I wish you the best.

Diversity Thursday

There is a classic battle being fought in New York City, one that demonstrates perfectly the problem we have.

The Diversity Industry and its cultural
Death Eaters come in three broad categories.

- First are the Money Bags who make their living promoting retrograde and outdated sectarianism - and get paid to speak at places like the USNA and the - ahem - command sponsored event linked above.
- Second are the True Believers who are mostly emotional people who try to apply the micro of their experience or what they have seen happen to others - usually decades ago - to the macro of today. Good meaning people - just myopic and wrong. Usually harmless, but when they get power they can cause a lot of damage as they punish the young for the sins of their grandfathers.
- Third are those who see Diversity as a religion. Fanatics in worst sense, they don't ignore you like a Money Bags, or get perplexed as True Believer do when confronted with modern facts of hard questions. No, like all fanatics when they don't get their way they set out to destroy. If they have access to power - they will use it in any undemocratic way possible to get what they want and validate their religion.

Meet one of the grand inquisitors of the Diversity Religion -
U.S. District Judge Nicholas Garaufis appointed himself the city’s de facto fire commissioner last week by enjoining the department from hiring any new firefighters without his approval—and he will give his approval only to the racial hiring schemes he has already tried to foist on the department.

Mayor Bloomberg has courageously refused to cave in to the judge’s quota demands—a stance vanishingly rare in today’s politically correct world. His refusal is justified, both legally and as a matter of policy. Judge Garaufis’s rulings have been capricious and biased, creating new law while ignoring facts that undercut his radical new doctrines. And Garaufis’s ultimate goal—to craft a future hiring process based on racial considerations—would put the city’s residents at risk by making skin color as important a qualification for firefighters as actual preparedness.
BZ to Mayor Bloomberg. Sure, I have some issues with him from guns to trans-fat, but on this one he deserves all the support he can get.

If only our navy thought the lives of thousands of Sailors, billions of dollars of equipment, and the maritime security of the USA was as important as NYC sees putting out a fire in an abandoned building.

Hat tip xformed.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

The answer is "YES," by Neptune's Trident "YES!"

As you may recall - he was my #1 pick last time. I think I said something about this nation needing a leader who will make tough choices and had executive experience ... maybe I was on to something .... from Politico,
... Rudy Giuliani just told me at City Hall at his portrait unveiling that "the door's not closed" on the possibility of him running for president again in 2012.

He said he won't think about anything until after the November midterm elections, and that he gets encouraged by people as he travels.

I asked, "So the door's not closed?" and he replied, "The door's not closed."
Giuliani-Pawlenty 2012; the unspellable ticket for unbearable times.

The Four Schools of Anti-Piracy

A week after the 2010 USNI History Conference; Piracy on the High Seas that I attended at Annapolis, there are two things that continue to come to mind for me; two conflicts that are for a large part responsible for the inability of the West to cobble together a solid response to piracy.

I summarize the conflicts over at USNIBlog -
head on over and give it a read.
UPDATE: Steve Carmel has make a very good response to my post in comments - you owe it to yourself to check them out.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

The post-post-racial President

If there is no other reason that President Obama should not be re-elected in 2012 - we have one now that Left & Right should unite in with disgust and agreement.

President Obama was elected in a large part because the American public had progressed to a point where they wanted to show that they had left a nasty part of their past behind - racism.

The idea that a man whose father was a black Kenyan and self-identified as black meant something. After all, how could someone call your nation racist if it just elected to the highest office a man
most people identify as "black." They were willing to roll the dice.

Part of that bargain was that President Obama was supposed to help up move further along. Solidify our growing race-neutral nation. Convince a few more percentages of people that we are what the rest of the word sees us as - Americans.

Well - in a preview of what will be an exceptionally nasty 2012 campaign - President Obama proves that he was listening all those years to
Jeremiah Alvesta Wright. The few racialist tells in his books and his statements were grounded in that mindset.

He is not a uniter - he is a pimp for political sectarianism.

First,
In a radio interview that aired on Univision on Monday, Mr. Obama sought to assure Hispanics that he would push an immigration overhaul after the midterm elections, despite fierce Republican opposition.

“If Latinos sit out the election instead of saying, ‘We’re gonna punish our enemies and we’re gonna reward our friends who stand with us on issues that are important to us,’ if they don’t see that kind of upsurge in voting in this election, then I think it’s gonna be harder and that’s why I think it’s so important that people focus on voting on November 2.”
... and then something his friends at the Justice Department must enjoy.
"We don't mind the Republicans joining us. They can come for the ride, but they gotta sit in back."
Would that be the back of the bus Mr. President?

You may have thought you were sending an inside joke - but really, that is just about a blunt and mindless as you can get. You are the President of the United States - not some shmo running for State Representative from some gerrymandered district.


Shame on you; I hoped you would be better than that. America deserves better in its Chief Executive.

Monday, October 25, 2010

WRT WikiLeaks and all that

While I was deep in the heart of Louisiana earlier today (don't ask) at about half a bar of AT&T, I received a call from the good folks at BBC World Have Your Say to see if I wanted to join them again to discuss WikiLeaks, I had to decline as the cell was weak and money called me elsewhere. Shame.

I don't know though what I would have been able to contribute to the discussion, as this is all very simple to me. First, I would not be comfortable discussing some of the things they released that I have first-hand knowledge of due to what I did my last few years on Active Duty. Even if they are open record now - I just am not going to do it as real people with real families are on the deck doing what must be done. That is my selfish reason - here is the larger one.

These people at WikiLeaks have blood on their hands. They are destructive and evil. I won't call them fools; I won't call them well intentioned. In 2010, there is no excuse. They know; they don't care. Any citizens of the USA involved need to be tracked down and arrested. Those not USA citizens we should indict and extradite. Those we can't should have a lifetime ban on travel to the USA and then we should track them so next time they go in to international waters we can send a snatch team to get them.

Yes, I am serious.

I think BLACKFIVE and I are roughly on the same sheet of music here.


War is what it is - we do it cleaner than anyone else. I apologize for nothing. If you aid my enemy, you are my enemy. It is that simple.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Next Midrats, best of show on Command

From our first show in June of this year.

Command at Sea. What does it mean, how do you do it, what it takes to succeed - and more importantly - what are the responsibilities of Command at Sea?

Join EagleOne and me for a wide ranging discussion with three present of former Navy and Coast Guard Commanding Officers on the nature of Command.

Our guests will be; CDR E. A. Westfall, CDR, USCG, Commanding Officer of the USCGC ESCANABA (WMEC 907). CDR James H. Ware, Commanding Officer, VAQ-135. CDR Michael Junge, USN, former Commanding Officer of the USS WHIDBEY ISLAND (LSD 41).

Catch the show at
5pm EST this Sunday if you can, or if you miss the show or want to catch up on the shows you missed - you can always reach the archives at blogtalkradio - or set yourself to get the podcast on iTunes.

Listen to Midrats on Blog Talk Rad

Friday, October 22, 2010

Fullbore Friday

In the long war that we are in, one of the most important things we need is something that is often the hardest to find - intellectual courage.

It is easy to sell a bit of your soul to keep yourself comfortable and with the friends you have become accustomed to.

This week we saw something we should all encourage. Read it all - but study in detail what happened to Juan Williams and how he responded to it.
Yesterday NPR fired me for telling the truth.
Juan, BZ. At least you can look yourself in the mirror in the AM.

This Long War will in many ways be a war of ideas and culture. Some of our greatest enemies own a USA passport and would never think of blowing up anything or killing a fly - but they can do things much worse.

One, two, a thousand Juan Williams - we need them. Oh, and while we are needing to save money - totally defund PBS/NPR et al. Live in the marketplace of ideas or die - two can play at this game. You try to destroy Juan's income, he prospers. I guess we can try to take your income away - good luck to you.

Pondering ...

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Diversity Thursday

We know the game that goes on at Annapolis with different standards depending on what DNA block you check, and we also know how happy the USCG Academy is that they no longer have to treat everyone equally regardless of race, creed, color, or national origin. Yes, in academia - they love to discriminate. They love to punish achievement.

Sad thing is - it doesn't just impact those who claim non-Iberian European DNA. No - with a pedigree that goes back to the Jewish Quotas - the cancerous policy of active discrimination impacts any group that - for whatever reason - seems to be doing better in the classroom than "approved" DNA groupings.

You see - only in the minds of the racialist could a Vietnamese Boat Baby be considered having
unfair advantage due to birth.
When college presidents and academic administrators pay their usual obeisance to "diversity" you know they are talking first and foremost about race. More specifically, they are talking about blacks. A diverse college campus is understood as one that has a student body that -- at a minimum -- is 5 to 7 percent black (i.e., equivalent to roughly half the proportion of blacks in the general population). A college or university that is only one, two, or three percent black would not be considered "diverse" by college administrators regardless of how demographically diverse its student body might be in other ways. The blacks in question need not be African Americans -- indeed at many of the most competitive colleges today, including many Ivy League schools, an estimated 40-50 percent of those categorized as black are Afro-Caribbean or African immigrants, or the children of such immigrants.

As a secondary meaning "diversity" can also encompass Hispanics, who together with blacks are often subsumed by college administrators and admissions officers under the single race category "underrepresented minorities." Most colleges and universities seeking "diversity" seek a similar proportion of Hispanics in their student body as blacks (since blacks and Hispanics are about equal in number in the general population), though meeting the black diversity goal usually has a much higher priority than meeting the Hispanic one.

Asians, unlike blacks and Hispanics, receive no boost in admissions. Indeed, the opposite is often the case, as the quota-like mentality that leads college administrators to conclude they may have "too many" Asians. Despite the much lower number of Asians in the general high-school population, high-achieving Asian students -- those, for instance, with SAT scores in the high 700s -- are much more numerous than comparably high-achieving blacks and Hispanics, often by a factor of ten or more. Thinking as they do in racial balancing and racial quota terms, college admissions officers at the most competitive institutions almost always set the bar for admitting Asians far above that for Hispanics and even farther above that for admitting blacks.
This disgusting mindset that parallels US Navy policy to actively discriminate against those that don't fit their theory will spread in the strangest ways - like any cancer.
But what Espenshade and Radford found in regard to what they call “career-oriented activities” was truly shocking even to this hardened veteran of the campus ideological and cultural wars. Participation in such Red State activities as high school ROTC, 4-H clubs, or the Future Farmers of America was found to reduce very substantially a student’s chances of gaining admission to the competitive private colleges in the NSCE database on an all-other-things-considered basis. The admissions disadvantage was greatest for those in leadership positions in these activities or those winning honors and awards. “Being an officer or winning awards” for such career-oriented activities as junior ROTC, 4-H, or Future Farmers of America, say Espenshade and Radford, “has a significantly negative association with admission outcomes at highly selective institutions.” Excelling in these activities “is associated with 60 or 65 percent lower odds of admission.”

Espenshade and Radford don’t have much of an explanation for this find, which seems to place the private colleges even more at variance with their stated commitment to broadly based campus diversity. In his Bakke ruling Lewis Powell was impressed by the argument Harvard College offered defending the educational value of a demographically diverse student body: “A farm boy from Idaho can bring something to Harvard College that a Bostonian cannot offer. Similarly, a black student can usually bring something that a white person cannot offer.” The Espenshade/Radford study suggests that those farm boys from Idaho would do well to stay out of their local 4-H clubs or FFA organizations — or if they do join, they had better not list their membership on their college application forms. This is especially true if they were officers in any of these organizations. Future farmers of America don’t seem to count in the diversity-enhancement game played out at some of our more competitive private colleges, and are not only not recruited, but seem to be actually shunned. It is hard to explain this development other than as a case of ideological and cultural bias.
Once you buy into bigoted theories of the Diversity Industry - more discrimination is easier and easier to do.

Nice, no?

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Things on Skippy's TiVO



Hat tip URR.

History, Piracy, and 2010

If you don't use Twitter often, you may want to for the next day. I'm spending the day with MaryR, URR, Eagle1, Galrahn, xformed, along with many Midrats guests Claude Berube, Virginia Lunsford, Eric Wertheim, CDR Junge, and more at the 2010 USNI History Conference: Piracy on the high seas.

We'll be using the Twitter hashtag #Piracy2010.

Monday, October 18, 2010

The Dutch have second thoughts

About Coffee houses and Koffie houses.

The problem isn't the Dutch really. Just like prositituion wasn't a big problem until the Moroccan and Algerian mafia took over - the problem is those who are not Dutch - the drug tourists - who are the issue.

In any event, the Dutch instinct is to live and let live. If that fails, no harm no foul - they correct.

Oh, and standard Kristen warning on the below video.

Vindication for the Ohio National Guard

Here is a follow-up to the post from May on the shooting at Kent State following the burning of the ROTC building and general riots that took place in 1970.
A tape recording of the 1970 shooting deaths of four Kent State University students by Ohio National Guardsmen reveals the sound of pistol shots 70 seconds earlier, a newspaper reported Friday citing the work of a forensic audio expert.

The finding lends support to a theory that the guardsmen thought they were being shot at during a campus Vietnam War protest. Witnesses said at the time that an FBI informant monitoring the protest fired warning shots because he felt threatened.

The National Guard opened fire on student protesters on May 4, 1970, killing four and injuring nine others. Eight guardsmen were acquitted of federal civil rights charges four years later. Many believe the events contributed to the change in the public's attitude toward the war, which ended five years later.

The reel-to-reel audio recording was made by a Kent State student who placed a microphone at a windowsill in his dormitory, which overlooked the antiwar rally. He later turned the tape over to the FBI. A copy eventually wound up in a Yale University archive.
The next part of the story is why for so long the political establishment and the press would not investigate the whole story - and instead decided to smear and blame the men of the Ohio National Guard who were just defending themselves.
A crew from Cleveland's WKYC-TV filmed Norman running toward guardsmen and police and being chased by two men. One of the men yelled: "Hey, stop that man! I saw him shoot someone!" The crew recorded Norman handing a gun to a police officer, saying, "The guy tried to kill me." Norman later said he was referring to an assault that happened after the Guard shootings.

Former WKYC reporter Fred DeBrine and soundman Joe Butano have said they heard a Kent State police detective open the cylinder of Norman's gun and say: "Oh my God, he fired four times." The detective denied making the remark. A campus patrolman's report said the gun was fully loaded with no smell of burned powder.

DeBrine and Butano repeated their assertion this week, the Plain Dealer reported. The paper said Norman has remained elusive for decades and could not be reached for comment.
That is a story that a good reporter needs to work on. Hopefully, more will follow.

Hey, maybe Neil Young could write a song.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Friday, October 15, 2010

Fullbore Friday


The Hairy Navy at its best; a nation at its best - even when it didn't want to hear it or believe it.

I highly encourage everyone to read
the full story of the USS KIRK (then DE-1087 then FF-1087) during the fall of South Vietnam in '75.
"We looked up out on the horizon, and pretty soon all you could see were helicopters. And they came in and it was incredible. I don't think I'll ever see anything like it again," said Doyle, now retired and living in Rhode Island.

The South Vietnamese military helicopters were packed with people — pilots and their family and friends. And now, as some of the choppers were precariously low on fuel, the pilots were looking for a place to land. Dozens of UH-1 Huey helicopters flew past the Kirk heading for the larger aircraft carriers. The Kirk had only a small flight deck.
Go here as well and see the video. These are the true Vietnam Veterans - not the cr@p fed to you by school books and Hollywierd. "Global Force For Good," something new? Child please; when has the USN not been a global force for good?

Be proud of your Navy, your nation - read the details at the same link on what these refugees did with their chance.

The
93rd Congress may have brought great shame on the USA - but in their way, the crew of the USS KIRK and ships like her gained a little back - and with this brought to our shores a great cohort of new Americans.

BZ.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Diversity Thursday

From the FY11 USN Reserve Component Promotion Board Guidance's Appendix B.
1. Fully Qualified. All officers recommended for assignment must be fully qualified; that is, each officer recommended must be capable of performing the required duties of the assignment officers that do not meet that standard shall not be recommended for assignment.
...
b. The Navy is comprised of Sailors representing 24 different ethnic groups and hundreds of cultural heritages. Fully qualified officers must be capable of leading personnel from widely varying backgrounds while executing the Navy’s strategic diversity initiatives. The Navy’s ability to meet this leadership challenge depends, in part, on having leaders who reflect our very best, including performance, professional experience, education, and the spectrum of professional communities.
Huh? ... and your point is? Will the next paragraph describe how humans are born with two eyes, two arms, and two legs?

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Enjoy the view while you can ....


David Brooks nails it - or finally gets it, depending on how charitable you want to be with him.
Why are important projects now unaffordable? Decades ago, when the federal and state governments were much smaller, they had the means to undertake gigantic new projects, like the Interstate Highway System and the space program. But now, when governments are bigger, they don’t.

The answer is what Jonathan Rauch of the National Journal once called demosclerosis. Over the past few decades, governments have become entwined in a series of arrangements that drain money from productive uses and direct it toward unproductive ones.

New Jersey can’t afford to build its tunnel, but benefits packages for the state’s employees are 41 percent more expensive than those offered by the average Fortune 500 company. These benefits costs are rising by 16 percent a year.

New York City has to strain to finance its schools but must support 10,000 former cops who have retired before age 50.

California can’t afford new water projects, but state cops often receive 90 percent of their salaries when they retire at 50. The average corrections officer there makes $70,000 a year in base salary and $100,000 with overtime (California spends more on its prison system than on its schools).

States across the nation will be paralyzed for the rest of our lives because they face unfunded pension obligations that, if counted accurately, amount to $2 trillion — or $87,000 per plan participant.
A couple of years ago, the eldest of the wee Salamanders asked why when I was her age I had grown up watching rockets taking off for the moon. Why the spaceships in 2001: A Space Odyssey never happened even though the technology was there?

In summary, I told her the answer was simple; we started electing and accepting politicians with no vision and no desire to lead and to do what was right. They were more interested in spending the nation's money on things that made them feel good about themselves - not make them feel good about their nation. They decided that they would rather
buy votes than expand the knowledge of man (yes, I'm that kind of Dad). The wee Salamander was not happy - I told her it was the Boomer's fault too. Smart girl, she told me "I don't like Hippies, they're embarrassingly stupid." Tears of joy I tell you, tears of joy from a father ...

OK, back to the subject at hand. Now we are at the point where we steal from our grandchildren in order to ... to .... to do what? Fund more GS-13s to approve the work of GS-12s responding to metric calls from he Dept. of Edu? To fund studies to determine who will conduct the study of the impact of government studies on Ethnic Studies departments at major land-grant institutions? Really?

To fix this will take pain. It will take leadership. It will take a people willing to tell the government, "I don't want the money you just took from my children."

To quote Gov.
Mitch Daniels (R-IN) - the DOD better come up with better, more efficient plans.
As OMB director, Daniels was on the National Security Council, and as governor he's visited Indiana troops around the world; he says "it's important to support the commander in chief" on Afghanistan. But he's open to cuts in defense spending beyond those Secretary Robert Gates has imposed. "No question that the system is rigged to overspend," he says, "like health care. No question that defense dollars could be spent better."

"But back to not becoming Greece," he says. "Can we continue with every mission we've assigned the military indefinitely? Is every one essential to the safety of Americans?"

"The answer may be yes," he concedes, "but you may have to stop doing some things completely. We are now borrowing the entire defense budget from international investors."
Gov. Daniels - we have ideas here, we've been discussing them for years. Let me give you the opening chapters - shall we review?

Remove all maneuver ground forces from Europe, Japan, and Korea. Maintain only Joint/Combined training and logistics bases with our allies with a minimum footprint focused on flexible surge response capabilities.

Re-evaluate what little air and sea forces are then stationed overseas. FDNF should be the last to go - if then. Remove balance of USMC personnel from Okinawa along the same lines as Europe.

Eliminate 33% of all Flag/General Officer Staffs (GOFO). Count all personnel savings as actual real savings. Full, no N1 tricks. No transfer of personnel; existing Staffs will have to prioritize and economize. Cut personnel assigned to NATO Staff billets by same amount. Accelerate redeployment of forces from the Arabian peninsula and Iraq back to CONUS. Structure bases in the Muslim world as with Europe - if that.

Cut the ranks of GOFO and their personal Staffs by 50% - negotiate down to a 33% cut if needed. Eliminate the entire SES ranks - but negotiate to a 75% cut if needed. Eliminate 50% of GS and Contractor billets. We fought WWII with less. Let Gen. Mattis do it after he sadly retires if you must. I trust him.

Take remaining GOFO billets and reduce one paygrade except for COCOMS (i.e. Lt.Gen to MajGen). Replace the archaic Goldwater-Nichols Act with something new and better. It is a quarter-century old. If you cannot do that - reset to what worked last and adjust.

Move combat pay and allowences to a daily vice monthly basis - ditto combat exclusion tax-free time. No more "go slow to stay another day inside the line" or strange "we landed on the 30th and returned on the 2nd" trips - etc. Implement a 3-year pay-freeze for all DOD military and all DOD and non-DOD Federal civilian positions. For the next 5-year period after that - civilian raises must be at no-greater-than 75% of any military raise (i.e. military gets 2%, civ gets NGT 1.5%).

Eliminate LCS and transfer those displacing water to the USCG "slick" with their baseline equipment. Dump Mission Modules in Vernon, Michael, and Gary's back yard and move forward. Tell them to put it out with the medal recycling if they wish.

Fast track a true multi-mission EuroFrigate design to be license built here for a run of no less than 12 and no more than 24 ships until a domestic design comes on line as the DDG replacement. NANSEN or ABSALOM would be a nice start. Not perfect - but good.

Make a steady decrease to a 9-carrier force and reinvest part of the savings that isn't taken back into the larger budget for strategic lift, replenishment ships and other unsexy, affordable, and needed expeditionary enabling forces that have been neglected by the Transformatinalists over the last decade. Base two carriers in Norfolk, one in Mayport and the balance on the West Coast.

As we consolidate our forces CONUS - we need to rebuild an expeditionary mindset - one that takes strategic airlift and sea lift seriously. Fully back the AirSea Battle Concept.

The Chinese will challenge us at sea sometime in the next century at a time and place of their choosing. We will have to defeat them at sea and in the air with focused and narrow utilization of ground forces as needed (as only a fool would go toe to toe on mainland Asia against the Chinese - and we don't have to; that is why we have allies).

Europe can handle Russia as she slowly dies and demographically becomes a Muslim nation at the end of the century. If not - their problem. You can't help those who won't help themselves.

We must focus on our economic health. In the last two years we have tripled the national debt -
this will take awhile to fix, if we can. A military budget will be part of this fixing.

This is the high water mark; start to think small. Start to think smart. Remember who wasted a decade in Transformatinalist dreams that left the Navy flat footed as the Strategic environment shifted - and then don't do like they did or act with such mindless arrogance surrounded with ubiquitous lick-spittals. Some of the worst will retire soon. Hope we see better leadership that can manage this decline - a decline that is coming.

The decline can be done right - but it won't be done right if you don't think it through early enough. Like an orange tree; prune it right in the bad years when it is sick, and when things get better you have a larger and stronger tree. Ignore it - and it will die.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

USS COLE (DDG-67); 10 years on

The Commanding Officer of the COLE when it was attacked, CDR Kirk Lippold, USN (Ret.) continues to serve the Navy and his crew by keeping the story of the COLE in the public arena through today, the 10th anniversary of the attack.

If you haven't already, I encourage you to listen to his visit to Midrats last Sunday, but also to head on over to his post at USNIBlog.

He outlines simply much of the message from the attack.
Today, the military is fully engaged in a war effort to stem the tide of al Qaeda and its radical brand of Islam. As we were warned, this will be long-term fight with a determined enemy willing to die for their cause. While fortunate to date that no large-scale attacks have been successfully carried out within our borders, it is up to everyone to keep up their guard and not allow complacency to overtake the daily grind of our jobs, school and kid’s soccer games.
He's participating in comments - so stop by and add your $.02.

Three aces on three tens


San Diego triple header. Nice.

Hat tip Andrew.

Monday, October 11, 2010

The Enterprise is dead; long live the ENTERPRISE

Glad to know that Big Navy finally caught up with the Front Porch.

Pointed there by Byron in comments - from
CFFC's blog, a bit about the C2 changes that brought joy to my ears.
Amidst plenty of C2 confusion, this change essentially preserves the goodness of integration of Ech 1-Ech II, Provider-TYCOMs, and CPF-USFF via AIR/SURF/SUB FORs and re-affirms the tried and true C2 (responsibility, authority and accountability) of the Type Commanders--SURFPAC, SURFLANT, AIRPAC, AIRLANT, SUBPAC, SUBLANT.

Great idea getting rid of the "Enterprise" term that unintentionally evolved in degrading C2. In our line of work, accountability for performance must reside with an individual and not a board room.
Like I said in comments over there, the sun looked brighter when I saw the term "Enterprise" go. Only one thing in the Navy should have "ENTERPRISE" in its name - and that would be a warship.

With "Big E" on her last deployment - I hope someone already had their eye on the next ship with that name. Seriously, that should be in a Top 5 list somewhere.

With a net personnel savings of ....

Where is the optimal manning numbers for Staffs? Do we save any billets - or are the C2 PPT slides just easier to understand?
Commander, U.S. Fleet Forces Command and Commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet announced on Wednesday a realignment of the command structure for the respective fleets.

Officials say the new structure establishes unambiguous command and control and administrative control lines of authority and accountability for ship manning, training, equipping and maintenance issues.

The action includes the realignment of Commander, Naval Air Forces and Commander, Naval Surface Forces from Commander, U.S. Fleet Forces Command to Commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet. The Navy also says, since naval forces are assigned to Type Commanders and not Fleet Type Commanders, the revision includes the direction that only Type Commanders have the authority to man, train, equip and maintain assigned forces.

The Navy's action also establishes a Fleet Integration Executive Panel chaired by both Commander U.S. Pacific Fleet and Commander U.S. Fleet Forces Command, replacing the Fleet Readiness Enterprise, formerly led by U.S. Fleet Forces Command.

With the realignment, the Type Commanders reporting to Commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet include: Commander, Naval Air Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet / Commander, Naval Air Forces (AIRFOR); Commander, Naval Surface Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet / Commander, Naval Surface Forces (SURFOR); and Commander, Submarine Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet.

The Type Commander reporting to Commander, U.S. Fleet Forces Command include: Commander, Naval Air Force, Atlantic; Commander, Naval Surface Force, Atlantic; Commander, Submarine Force, Atlantic / Commander, Submarine Forces (SUBFOR); Commander, Military Sealift Command; Commander, Navy Cyber Forces; and Commander, Navy Expeditionary Combat Command.
Yep, that second paragraph cracked me up.

I guess until this MSM award citation was written we had, "...
ambiguous command and control and administrative control lines of authority and accountability for ship manning, training, equipping and maintenance issues." ... and we were cool with that for how many years? In a time of war? Really?

Might explain a lot. OK Staff Weenies - time to update your C2 slides. Chop chop.

Hat tip Tom.

Mattis over USAF Mike any day ...

Sorry fella. I know you didn't like my post last week - but I know someone who would.

From
March;
The quest for a low-cost, low-tech, irregular warfare aircraft to provide ground pounders with long loitering, on-call recon and strike got a big boost recently when Joint Forces Command’s Gen. James Mattis threw his support behind the Navy and Air Force “Imminent Fury” effort.

Mattis told the Senate Armed Services Committee last week that he was taking a personal interest in the classified project, being run chiefly out of the Navy’s Irregular Warfare Office, that is looking at small turboprop aircraft for ground support. The sought after design falls somewhere between the Vietnam era OV-10 Bronco and A-1 Skyraider. It must stay aloft for a long time for surveillance needs but also have the punch to provide precise fire support when needed; a true “over the shoulder” aircraft for small ground units doing distributed operations in remote locations.
...
“A LAAR aircraft capability has the potential to shift air support from a reactive threat response, to a more proactive approach that reduces sensor to shooter timelines, with immediate and accurate fires, providing surveillance and reconnaissance throughout a mission, while providing communication and navigation support to troops on the ground,” said Mattis.
What he said.

Hat tip Mike.

Saturday, October 09, 2010

National Insecurity Provider

So, now that General Jones is out as National Security Advisor --- you want to know what I think of his replacement?

Well, you need to head over to
BigPeace to find out.
UPDATE: It is even worse than what I put over at BP.

A little inside info from someone who was at Fannie Mae on the inside at the time:
"...he was a nice guy and a good lawyer and built up his fiefdom but he was pretty political. Like most of the senior people at Fannie Mae who had law degrees, he thought like a lawyer when it needed people with more business backgrounds. The lawyers only wanted lawyers in charge because they thought they were the smartest people in the room but didn't understand processes and lacked an operational mindset."
A great question for him is, what was a lawyer mindset with no national security background going to bring to the NSA job?

One more little nugget to let you know what an inbred line professional DC people are: the guy who replaced Donilon at Fannie Mae was David Gregory's wife. It will be interesting to see how Gregory handles him on Meet the Press.

Yep, you need to take a bath now.

Saturday Flashback

Go get a cup of coffee and come back. Wedge in a half an hour.

Bask.

Thursday, October 07, 2010

VADM Miller, USNI Alumni, & Diversity

Want to get a look-see at the new Supe at Annapolis? Want some good news about the USNA, and even - perhaps - see a vision of a new look at Diversity?

Could we be turning a corner - or at least taking an oblique?

Well - go over to USNIBlog to read my last post there and find out.

Happy Birthday Navy, at Midrats

Why wait for 13 OCT for the Navy's 235th Birthday party when you can get your Navy on the 10th?

Join EagleOne and me this Sunday, 10 OCT at 5pm EST as we get you ready for the Navy's birthday on the 13th. As our gift to you, we offer two guests that will get you ponder'n.

Since the end of US involvement The Vietnam War almost 40 years ago, there are just a few USN Commanding Officers who know what it is like for a warship under attack; one of the handfull will be our first guest, CDR Kirk Lippold, USN (Ret.). He was the Commanding Officer of the USS Cole (DDG-67) when it was attacked while in port Aden, Yemen 12 October 2000 - the 10th anniversary will be this Tuesday.

His assignments prior to the USS Cole included Executive Officer of USS SHILOH, an Aegis-class guided missile cruiser. His department head tour was unique in his assignment to the crew that commissioned USS Arleigh Burke, the Navy's first Aegis guided missile destroyer. He served as the Operations Officer responsible for the training and operation of a next generation $1 billion warship with a crew of over 300 Sailors. He had two division officer assignments, which included a tour on USS Yorktown, an Aegis class guided missile cruiser. There, he completed a lengthy seven and a half month deployment to the Mediterranean, where he participated in the Achille Lauro aircraft seizure, Black Sea Freedom of Navigation operations against the Soviet Union, and Attain III combat operations in the Gulf of Sidra off Libya that followed several Libyan sponsored terrorist attacks in Europe. His initial division officer tour was in USS Fairfax County, a tank landing ship, where he completed a deployment to Beirut, Lebanon, in support of the US Marine Corps and the Multinational Peacekeeping Force when terrorists attacked the American Embassy and severely damaged it.

He is a 1981 graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy. He attended the Navy Postgraduate School from 1987 to 1989 where he received a Masters of Science in Systems Engineering (Joint Command, Control and Communications). He is a 1994 graduate of the United States Army Command and General Staff College and is also a 2001 graduate of the Joint Forces Staff College. He has also served as the Administrative Aide to the Secretary of the Navy. He subsequently served on the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Directorate for Strategic Plans and Policy (J-5), where he was instrumental in crafting detainee policy for the war on terrorism during its initial stages following the 9/11 attacks. His last assignment was in the International Strategy Division in the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations (N5IS). Commander Lippold retired from the Navy in June 2007.

We will discuss his experiences then as well as the work he has done since his retirement with senior military fellow with
Military Families United, and any other topics that fold their way in to our conversation.

Our second guest will be from the shadows of the Navy EOD world,
Steve Phillips. After graduating from Annapolis in '92, Steve found honest work as a SWO, but then transfered into EOD where he served as an Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technician at EOD Mobile Units Six, Eight, and Ten. He is the author of Proximity: A Novel of the Navy's Elite Bomb Squad which received a Gold Medal from the Military Writers Society of America in 2008.

Some of the proceeds from Proximity support the EOD Memorial Foundation which provides scholarship to the children of EOD Technicians who made the ultimate sacrifice.

If you like his work, Steve is currently working on a non-fiction account of EOD Technicians in our current conflict with a working title of
Improvised: EOD Techs in the War on Terrorism. The first two of the chapters for the non-fiction work are available at: "The Birth of the Combined Explosives Exploitation Cell" and "A Remembrance of 9/11."

Join us live if you can, and pile in with the usual suspects in the chat room during the show where you can offer your own questions and observations to our guests. If you miss the show or want to catch up on the shows you missed - you can always reach the archives at blogtalkradio - or set yourself to get the podcast on iTunes.

Listen to Midrats on Blog Talk Rad

Diversity Thursday

The mask slips in DC - and discrimination is enshrined at the Coast Guard Academy.

I have told you for years that Diversity has nothing to do with civil rights or the fair treatment of all Americans, just the opposite.

Diversity has everything to do with raw, unadulterated racism and sectarianism - red in tooth and claw. Where once bigot wore sheets - now they wear name tags with "Diversity" in the job title.

A national disgrace.
Buried in the annual Coast Guard authorization act passed this week by Congress is wording that would strike from the U.S. Code the statement that all appointments to the Coast Guard Academy "shall be made without regard to the sex, race, color or religious beliefs of an applicant."

Under current federal law the academy is "race neutral," but the change would put it on the same footing as other colleges and universities in balancing its enrollment by admitting students from specific groups.
Read the whole thing and wallow in the shame it brings to all of us.

Pathetic. Alas, the USCG Academy is lost.
Simply striking the sentence will not increase diversity, said Antonio Farias, the academy's director of diversity affairs.

"We have to get out there and recruit," he said Thursday. "Having the sentence simply gone doesn't mean more qualified applicants from diverse backgrounds will apply. What it means is it gives us latitude in how we shape classes so we're on par with the Harvards, MITs and other highly selective colleges that are not under a race-blind arrangement, and gender blind and religious blind. We have had all these blinders on."

Farias said minority students would still have to meet all of the qualifications, and then their background becomes a "plus factor," as it would for a football player or a cellist.
Yes, in 2010 we actively discriminate on the basis of race, creed, and color. If anyone tells you otherwise, they are lying to you - as an institution we admit it. Those who are promoting racist policies are not wearing hoods and sheets though, or brown shirts - but have Congressional parking spaces or have "Diversity" somewhere in their job title.

I hope they sleep well at night. If I were them I would vomit in disgust that I would sell my integrity so cheaply - but hey - maybe their price point is different. Maybe they enjoy abusing people born during the Clinton Administration for being born with certain DNA. Their conscience.

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Nuclear

OMG. Gold, pure irradiated gold. The last line is the best.



Hat tip RedState.