Friday, February 10, 2012

No Confidence in SECNAV

"Don't blog angry!" Well, again, I am ignoring my own advice. Here we go. I will want to reword this in an hour, but I won't. Want unfiltered Sal? Well, here you go.

What confidence I once had in the SECNAV gone, broken, unable to be supported. I was a fool to give him the benefit of the doubt. This is the last straw.

Small things do matter - as they often support much larger and critical things.
Ship names mean nothing anymore. The vacuousness, vapidity, and morally rudderless nature of our present leadership is out there clear as day for all to see. I don't even think they know it.

Naming a ship after that bucket of goo MURTHA was bad enough.
Rep. Giffords (D-AZ) was/is a fine public servant and her husband is a Navy astronaut. She was shot in the head by an insane person. None of the above rate having a Navy ship named after you. Announced on a Friday afternoon - I think even the Navy is ashamed of this classic case of immature pandering to the Overclass.
In yet another break with tradition, Navy Secretary Ray Mabus announced Friday that a new Littoral Combat Ship would be named for Gabrielle Giffords, the Arizona congresswoman who survived a January 2011 assassination attempt.

“The selection of Gabrielle Giffords, designated LCS 10, honors the former Congresswoman from Tucson, Arizona, who is known for supporting the military and veterans, advocating for renewable energy and championing border security,” the Navy said in a statement accompanying the announcement.


Forget that LCS are supposed to be named after medium sized cities; forget the legion of Navy and Marine Corps heroes who don't even have a head named after them. Just put this in your mental file whenever you need proof that we are being led by crass, cynical, narcissistic Brahmins who care for nothing but their own selfish interest. Shame on our Navy leadership for this, and I hate to say it - but the right move would have been for Rep. Giffords to decline this honor - others have deserved it so much more. Shame. Shame. Shame. Those who pinged on me in the past for my giving the benefit of the doubt to SECNAV - I now admit you were right and I was wrong. I apologize to you. When rumors first hit me about this at dawn - I did not believe them. Even 'ole Sal could not believe that his Navy could be such a whore to petty, political, feel-good desires of the unworthy. Yes I went there.

I mad at myself for my confidence in an institution that I love - evidently I love it more than it loves its own heroes and history.
UPDATE: Kristina Wong over at the WashTimes has a bit on it ... and lookie who she quotes.


That tip Tom.

246 comments:

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Casey Tompkins said...

+10.

Botox: the new kevlar.

Casey Tompkins said...

Reading comprehension is not your strong suit. Just about every commenter here has had good words for Ms. Giffords. They'ved saved all the bad ones for the Secretary of the Navy, as well as the current administration.

In fact, not only have the offered praise for the lady, but good wishes and prayers for her full recovery.

Please pay attention. :-E

Casey Tompkins said...

Spew Alert™!

Casey Tompkins said...

Naaah. That's Ron Jeremy.

Casey Tompkins said...

Sounds like a hero to me.

Casey Tompkins said...

Nope. Don't see it.

First, he got his PT boat T-boned by a Japanese destroyer. Then he very nearly started WW3 with his grandstanding during the Cuban Missle crisis.

I respect & admire Ronald Reagan, but agree with Mike M. Nuke all the civilian-named ships, and re-christen them appropriately. But I'm a paleo-neanderthal who prefers the "classic" naming system, even if fish don't vote. :)

USAF Mike said...

Way to parrot a line of bullshit, OM (although I'm really not at all surprised to see it coming from you): http://www.snopes.com/politics/quotes/giffords.asp  All the Rep was asking about was whether the DoD had any plans to adopt small-scale solar power units as a way to reduce consumption of fuel at bases around Afghanistan.

And FWIW, dependence on fuel IS a legitimate military problem, especially in a counter-insurgency where one of your weak points is logistics/supply convoys, and even more so in a counter-insurgency in a country like Afghanistan with an abysmal electric grid.

Guest said...

Are you going to attend the launching of that new carrier also ?   See if they launch it with the elevators attached or if they have to add the two, large (heavy) elevators after launching.   That large deck ampbhibious class LHA keeps on gaining weight and pretty soon they won't even be able to launch it all.   Need to put those big gators on a diet.  America is gaining another 5,000 tons over her immediate predicessor and she is now right at the upper limit that the yard can construct and launch.   But, even losing a few knots of top speed, she'll still be able to outrun her underpowered LPD-17 class who usually deploy in a group.   But still, if America can only achieve perhaps 22 knots max top speed wide open,  will that be sufficient for her to launch jets like the overweight F-35B ?

LT Rusty said...

Odd, I thought that Guest was calling the "crazy tea party nut" a dirtbag, not Ford.

Wharf Rat said...

Guest, I'm nuthin' but a naval enthusiast, so you're asking the wrong guy those questions.  I did talk with the LHA design team at the Keel Authentication ceremony and they told me a couple of things - that originally the LHA class was supposed to be 921' long, but they couldn't justify the combination of cost and capability against the current length of LHD 8 and what she could do.  LHA 6 and LHD 8 will be closer sisters than LHD 8 and the rest of the Wasp Class big decks, even w/LHA missing a well deck.  You speak of the elevators - according to the design team, they won't fold up.  Other than the Panama canal, there was no reason to do it.  And with LHD 8 going around the Horn with the capability of the elevators folding and didn't run her through the canal on the way to her homeport, even giving folding elevators to her was questioned.

As for the weight questions, someone better than me will need to answer.

Wharf Rat said...

<span>And as for your F35B questions - I reviewed the video of the tests on USS WASP LHD 1 recently, and those things can fly.  That said, I realize they're not set for combat with fuel and weapons.  But I have ever confidecnce the design team will make it happen.  
 
I do remember a story on Navy Times about two years ago when about 12-14 Marine Harriers flew off a British carrier (that no longer is commissioned) and they loved the ski jump flight deck.  If memory serves, part of the reason we don't have them is our flight decks are longer, and no one in the US Navy likes the look of a ski jump: :) .  With a ski jump, you also lose a huge area for Helo ops, just sayin'.  So - if you're asking if the F35B can take off, yes, but I suspect the guys/gals who fly them would rather have the ski jump for help, into the wind of course :) .</span>

Wharf Rat said...

any number of Essex class and CVL names are missing from the fleet.  Hornet - still incredible that this name is missing right now.  Hopefully they'll set things right and at least put it on LHA 7.  I can live with that.  Hornet and Enterprise need to sail together again in the future.  I will blow a cork if they name a big deck ampib 'ENTERPRISE'.

MR T's Haircut said...

We still have time to rename it the USS Whitney Houston....

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Yeah, she was heroic enough to be a filthy-rich drug addict and kill herself early. 

Much more of a tragedy than someone who is stupid enough to get killed serving his country.

MR T's Haircut said...

Perfect criteria for a plaque on the Quaterdeckm wouldnt you say?  Her ship sponsor could be Lindsey Lohan...

ewok40k said...

Yup, and that after being the president to make racial segregation in units end... But for the extreme left any former US president by default is a nazi since he did not start a communist revolution. This will eventually include Obama, too. 

ewok40k said...

Sorry if I offended, but given trends in naming this is worryingly close to reality. That's why old traditional names (Enterprise anyone?) should come back, along with war heroes. I wonder if we coul put a Facebook page "say no to ships named after politicians"?

Byron said...

No offense, but where I come from, it's considered impolite to speak ill of those who passed. They're gone, and nothing you can say can make them feel bad now or hurt them. There's still those left who mourn her like Aretha Franklin who is as class an act as there is.

Skippy-san said...

No, John Dalton still holds that honor-but Mabus is working hard to equal it.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

What I am offended by, Byron, is the elevation to hero status of those whose wealth and excesses are either ignored or glorified, and who are held up as admirable and to be emulated. 

Someone who works 70 hours a week, earns and invests his OWN money, with all the hard work and concomitant risks of failure, and accumulates great wealth because of his ingenuity and effort?  He (or she) is now Public Enemy Number 1.   Selfish and heartless, no matter how many people they employ and how much is contributed to charitable causes.

But someone else, an athlete, performer, or actor, who is rich beyond wildest imagination before age 25, and because of "angst" and "demons" destroys him/herself with drugs and alcohol and hedonism?  Why, they are the very definition of magnanymity.  And their loss, unlike that of a hero in uniform, is a "terrible tragedy" that requires weeks-long coverage and tribute.

I am tired of it.  It is a symptom of a disease of our society that is potentially fatal.  Besides, accounting the facts is not "speaking ill".

LT B said...

Well, the ship's ladder will have 12 steps, and we can take the broken steps from the USS Howard to symbolize how well it worked for ol' Whitney. 

MR T's Haircut said...

Byron,
It is tongue in cheek cynicism.. Whitney was an example of personal responsibility and after the next few days, you will see hero worship like you cannot imagine when the hollywierds gather around her memory.. so hey when gathering, I choose to use her life as an example to illustrate the naming of a ship.. watch.. it will be suggested in the media... that is how far we have declined....

Impolite? No she lived her life publicly. We all get a say on how we feel about it.

WCOG said...

I see a workaround. All we have to do is convince the people of Flagstaff to rename their city "Gabrielle Giffords", and then the ship name will be correct again. This is the obvious solution, right?

Kristen said...

Hey Mr T, I might have used different language, but I agree completely with your point.

Guest said...

My dad used to follow 70's politics very closely.  Dad admired President Ford immensely for one reason:  Jerry Ford veto'd a very large number of bills sent to him from Congress.  Both my Dad and President Ford thought that the United States had plenty of laws already and didn't need a whole pile more added every year by Congress.   VETO !   Something every President should do to at least 80 percent of whatever Congress sends to him for signature.    Someone once said that no man's life or property was safe whenever Congress was in session. 

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

URR, agreed.  Houston's life and death is a tragedy; however, she will be celebrated like a hero because the media is to chickenshit to tell the full story in order for children to learn from it.

And so are the "leaders" of the Black community.

I said it.

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

ABC is in full damage control mode over this one.....
http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2012/02/navy-announces-uss-gabrielle-giffords/

Sean said...

Pretty brutal when the comments are massively against this naming...

Sean

UltimaRatioRegis said...

What was it Archie Bunker said about Ford?

"He's doin' a hell of a job for a guy nobody voted for!"

Dave Foster said...

There's a problem getting engine spares onboard also.  Too big for unrep, and perhaps also vertrep.  Beg pardon but 90% of all boat stuff goes in one ear and out the other but a colleague who pays attention to these kinds of things recently reported some spare engine replenishment hangups.  I've spent more time on the weapons bay and overall loadout/bring back.  Porch, please pitch in with additions/corrections.

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

Unfortunately too big as well to do an engine swap in the hangar...you have to do it topside.  Which, in turn, means that you lose your flight deck while you are doing your engine change out.  So, to recap: No engine spares.  Bird goes down, you have two options: hangar queen, or VERTREP a new engine onto the deck, hope that you have stable enough seas to do the changeout, and lose your flight deck while you are doing this.  Total time off station: 24+ hours.

Ouch.

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

Skippy, great historical reference, Sir!

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

Dalton presided over the destruction of the American Navy back when the SECNAV had power.  This SECNAV--while not of enough power to destroy the navy--is doing his best to poison the culture / tradition and gut its fighting spirit.

SCOTTtheBADGER said...

If he were alive today, I suspect JFK would be a Republican.  Truman understood the evil of communism, so perhaps he would be, as well.

SCOTTtheBADGER said...

The Little Coffin Ships are 75% the size of a CLEVELAND, and carry less armament than a late war 80 foot ELCO PT boat

ewok40k said...

Not surprisingly back in the day they were labelled as defeatists and leftists for not unleashing Le May's formidable fleet of bombers into my side of the Iron Curtain... Many didnt  believe containment will work (and it took decades of steady US policy, a miracle of sorts...).

Grandpa Bluewater said...

Not in her district. The city to rename would be Tucson.

P.S. Wallace said...

Oh, agreed. At this rate, with the criteria becoming "honoring a woman of courage, resiliency and spirit", maybe we should name a ship after Oprah.

Or name her CNO.  

P.S. Wallace said...

Agreed, that is, to the idea of a USS Whitney.

Philbob said...

hey SecNav where is the USS Fallujah? Perhapes its time for the mil-naval bloggers and veterans groups to start bombarding his facebook and twitter.

George said...

With the questionable leadership in DC now, it isn't surprising that this would happen.  One wondes if those in the Pentagon are more concerned about their next star than they
are with valueable Navy traditions.  Bummer!

UltimaRatioRegis said...

George,

One doesn't wonder at all.  To wonder whether the senior leadership in the Pentagon is more worried about their next star/assignment is akin to wondering whether the sun will come up in the east tomorrow morning...

KenofSoCal said...

Dear SECNAV,
  Why don't you name LCS-10 after somebody who served in and did something for the Navy.  Somehow this must have missed yout desk...again.
http://www.navytimes.com/news/2012/01/navy-nimitz-ldo-regina-rogers-mills-dies-trying-help-crash-victim-012812w/
USS Regina Mills sounds better.

Anonymous said...

So happens that I was just a table away from the good Congresswoman and her family the other day...

She is still in a quite fragile state, and up close and personal, you can't help but admire her courage and stamina.

None of this is on Rep Giffords or jer husband.

Not sure how Mabus can look at himself in the mirror after having put these fine folks into the position he has.

--sid

KenofSoCal said...

The LCS's are garbage and death-trap in peace and war.  The PHM's had more firepower and (by the time the LCS program is done) less shore support needs.

sid said...

So happens that I was just a table away from the good Congresswoman, her husband, and some other intimate folks the other day at a little breakfast spot...

While still in an infirm state, you can only admire her stamina and courage when you see her up close and personal.

Got to thinking, none of the criticism of this bad descision should be on them. If she were to refuse, then it would be seen as a crass political ploy on her part. Accepting is arguably the lesser of two evils for her and her fine family.

And God knows, they have been through enough.

Compared to the recent choices of Warner, Murtha, and Chavez (Ford had at least some tenuous precedent attached), she is arguably the one with the most pluck that all can look up to.

No. This is all on Mabus (if his story of it being his idea is true...Gotta wonder). Even if he was doing the bidding of higher authority, I'm not sure how the guy can look himself in the mirror.

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