I don't and never will know if this story is true. Back when I had divisions, not one single one of my Petty Officers in any work center had a colateral duty. The colaterals were something that the officers didn't enjoy much but they were pretty much assigned only to officers. It might be worth taking a look at the SORM and seeing what the explosion of SAVI, and SAPR and urinalysis and all the rest have done to make life unendurable for those who actually want to fix stuff.
The worst thing we could do to sailors in my day was to send them mess cranking. That wasn't a colateral though because it became their complete and total duty. I suspect that the people who like to bother other people have made being a sailor much harder than it has to be. That was the unofficial motto of a Group I was once affiliated with. "Making things Harder than they Have to Be." (think about it) and no. They got rudder orders from a thousand miles away and 3000 miles away.