Friday, November 30, 2018


It is sorry I am to see the light that failed at sondrakistan.

This is gone. She was the essential kibosher.

About a decade ago I asked KIP to keep her in lieu of any of the wanna-bees.

Thursday, November 29, 2018


He was the voice of the people in Congress. We will miss that voice of reason as the new Congress presents itself to we, the people. 

While a House ruled by the Nazgul will prove entertaining, it will put an end to the pursuit of equal justice under the law and preserve the right of the Kennedy's and those beyond the law to, as whossname said, maintain. Thankfully, the Senate, which holds the rule of law in its orbit still presents an almost meaningful facade of lawful intent.

Sadly, they are the ones most bought and sold by the Trusts and the plutocrats.

Wednesday, November 28, 2018


I am left wondering today if what President started with and continues with will become the minimum requirement for the nation's next president. I have included his voice on my blog roll lately because what Americans and the rest of the world see now is a ruler who speaks directly to the people without having his words filtered by his administration, his spokesman or the editors and news jockeys of the press. In other words, we get a direct pipeline from the mind of the President of the country to us without all the smoothing and spin applied, as they have been for decades, by the main stream media.

I know vast numbers of people object to his approach but I laugh at them much the way the media tries to laugh off the Presidential broadsides he levies against them every single day. No, no, I don't read his stuff everyday. I seldom look at it unless there is breaking news of that ilk and I'm curious what his take on it is. For instance, we drove by Lordstown on Monday on the Ohio Turnpike enroute to Latrobe, Penna and saw that at 1015AM, the lot was empty. It has been that way for some months as we saw GM ramp down Cruz production. It was no surprise to drive back by Lordstown at 1745 Monday and see an empty lot.

On Tuesday I read about GM's decision to let go 14,000 auto workers including everyone who worked at Lordstown. I was curious to see what the President's take on this matter would be and there it is, in the blog roll for all to see because I don't think Jack Dorsey or the other SJWs at Twitter have the balls to shut down President Trump's twitter account.

Yes, I know, there will be another loser deep in the bowels of Twitter who will decide, unilaterally, to shut down the President's account for violating twitt's terms of service. I imagine half the country is looking forward to that day and hoping for sooner rather than later.

I don't see how any candidates from the popular and progressive party of loose communism and die-hard socialism could fail to tweet their every passing thought if they hope to beat Trump at this game. Likewise, I don't see America accepting a candidate so vile and weak that he or she cannot lay out his or her thoughts in clear definitive script for all to read. Twit makes the standard obfuscation difficult to say the least and encourages clear thinking and brevity over all other considerations, even for politicians.


It's been awhile since the Law made sense in our land although we're not as messed up as formerly Great Britain and the United Kingdom For Rapist Rights.
The Supreme Court in a unanimous decision on Tuesday limited the reach of the Endangered Species Act, ruling that the government can designate a protected “habitat” only in areas where a threatened animal could currently live.
The justices set aside a ruling that restricted development in a wooded area in Louisiana where an endangered frog might be able to live in the future if some trees were removed.
At present, the roughly 100 remaining dusky gopher frogs live only in a single pond in a wooded area nearby in Mississippi.
I did not expect anything like a unanimous decision from the Court. I do, however see a downside to their ruling for the poor remaining dusky gopher frogs. I can see now in my mind's eye the dedicated eco-warriors sneaking into that lonely pond in Mississippi and capturing a few of the remaining frogs in order to release them into nice private lands in Louisiana in order to call the ruling into question. Since ECO and SJW warriors are about as coordinated as a pack of two year old kids playing soccer, I expect most of the captured frogs will die and there will be so many attempting to "save them" that all of the dusky gopher frogs will be dead in a few months.

The SJW/ECO warriors have a long and horrifying record of laying waste to the places they attempt to save leaving behind thousands of tons of garbage, trash, human waste, bodies and that sort of thing along with their various drug stashes which they forgot about after heading to town for some munchies.
A tiny fraction of the waste left behind by eco warriors at their Dakota Pipeline protest camp

Tuesday, November 27, 2018


It seems that the resistance is allowed to toss around fire bombs with impunity. I can't recall anyone throwing one at a riot and later being hauled before the bar of justice. Admittedly, these fascists are so blooming incompetent their aim is always off, they have twig-like arms and throw like girls but still, fire bombs!

If it is not proscribed or cracked down on by the cops, can we throw fire bombs at anti-fa and BLM? I mean, it's only fair isn't it?

And besides, it's not like anybody cares what happens to a bunch of black clad fascists rioting in the streets. It is just possible that they comprehend this but then, they don't score all that high on comprehension, civilization or public decorum. Maybe we could just send them all to Cuba or Venezuela for a couple of years of finishing before letting them back on the streets in America. I'm sure they'd agree since those are well known socialist paradises. It could be like 2 years at Club Med for them.

Is Club Med still around or is that one with history?

Sunday, November 25, 2018


Whip out your coloring books. You may easily color me musically superstitious.

As Chief Engineer of a forward deployed wooden ship I had a lucky flashlight. Yes, yes, it took me 4 months to learn that I also had a lucky .45 cal pistol hanging on my door.

I was listening to music on the tube of u tonight and almost, but not quite, wandered too deeply into the past and cued up some music I know better than to listen to. As I recall, the last time I heard it a house burned down. The time before that I was using the outboard motor of a zodiac to dispel a 500 gallon oil spill from the vicinity of the guilty ship somewhere else.

When I was the sole bearer of bad news and young, there were no myths, voodoo or legends. It was only when I was a department head that they reared their ugly fanged beaks.

MInd you, it is some of the music of my youth and I like it. I mean to introduce ice to my knee in a bit and drive to Pittsburgh and beyond in the depth of morning. I'm not stupid enough to take chances. There will be no music.

What does life look like when you follow the script?
No blown head gaskets on the mains or generators for 9 months
100% availability for 9 months
Not hitting a mine because you can see them shining in the dark on sonar for 9 months
Having the engine catch fire over Saudi Arabia and making it back to Bahrain alive.
Crash landing same plane in Greece.
Crash landing same plane in Italy.

At some point, you just decide.

Friday, November 23, 2018


It's a mystery why people still give money or assets to some of the more famous organizations run by the Kleptocracy. I stopped giving to them when I learned that the head of the San Diego Red Cross was drawing a salary well in excess of a million dollars a year.  Ditto the head of United Way. There are better ways to spend my money for disaster relief. To be honest, stepping into my backyard and setting the bills on fire would be a better use of the money.

The apologists for the ruination of charities seem to think that they must pay superpeople to raise money using experts. Sadly, experience shows that people give because that's our nature. You know, except for those who don't. A lot of us? We aren't going to give anything to an organization that claims to be for the good of all but that compensates it's executives on the lavish scale of people who own townhouses in New York City.

Not going to happen.

Wednesday, November 21, 2018


We hope that you have a joyful and wonderful Thanksgiving with family and friends or just by yourselves.


Last night we went to the pool as is our usual routine for Tuesdays. While I was floating around watching the news on the big TV a woman engaged me in conversation and so we talked for a few minutes. It turns out that she is a nun and just left the job as Principal of a school in a place very well known to me several states away. It took her about 2 minutes to turn the conversation to what a complete idiot President Trump is and I could only nod in agreement in a pool full of the enemy and without weapons to hand.

She found it absolutely and utterly amazing that her brother with a severe learning handicap was outraged every time it crossed his attention that Trump beat Clinton and she herself was quite outraged that her "college educated brother" was actually a fan of President Trump. What could I do? I nodded in agreement. She almost but not quite said, why do the smart ones favor Trump.

It was interesting to meet someone in Metroparkcentralis who, while from here, had been teaching in Arlington for many years about 4 blocks from my parents house. When she told me that her school was just by the metal diner I burst out laughing and said, "the diner on Lee" and she allowed as how it was so. I probably walked by that school a hundred times.

I think it's interesting, for values of interesting, that everybody I meet just assumes I voted against Trump.  On the other hand, many people today like to portray Nixon as a great villian and way too stupid to shave a narrow margin of victory like Ronald Reagan's squeeker in '84.

Yes, both of them won 49 of the 50 states in their second elections to the office of President. Nowadays you'd be hard pressed to find anybody who said they voted for either of them.


I almost pity poor Nancy Pelosi. She has obviously had some moments on camera where reality became a little too hard for her to cope with but she soldiers on. As I read this sad article I wondered what it would be like to lead a House divided but where your side is represented by some of the dumbest clucks to ever come down the pike.  With Maxine Waters, easily the dumbest person in Congress, set to Chair the House Financial Services Committee, one can see that the Deep State is set to reign supreme in Hell (or at least the U.S. House of Representatives.)

It promises to be a hilarious year as the House feels its way all the way into full mediocrity and the various branches of the Administration do to them what Holder, Clinton and all the rest under Obama did to the House back in the days when it was a Republican House. I expect both a slow roll and a complete deluge of the archives of every single malfeasance committed during the Holder, Clinton, Obama era, when demands for records and archives are submitted. Perhaps we'll see the real records on the ATF's gun running scheme, what really happened when our Ambassador to Libya phoned home to ask for help and other interesting tidbits.

I'm looking forward to it.

Monday, November 19, 2018


I just finished reading an interesting short article, The Kind of Men Who Carry Pocketknives. It was interesting reminder of another time that is lost to history for most of us who live in or around big cities.

I got my first pocketknife from my grandmother when I was 10. She gave all of us pocketknives from her vast collection when we reached that age and no, my parents were not aghast. We were all trained to use them as tools and use them responsibly and so we did. There couldn't have been more than 20 or 30 flesh wounds between the 4 of us caused by those sharp little knives.

Back then every boy scout had a pocketknife and usually a sheath knife and a hatchet and camping gear and went camping on weekends and built fires in the woods and on the prairie and I swear, once on a frozen lake. I think the pocketknives sometimes went to school and nobody cared. In the entire time of my education from kindergarten until post college, no classmate was ever so much as scratched by a knife.

After 9/11 pocketknives were relegated to the dustbin of history here in America. One cannot board an aircraft with anything sharper than wit and you'd be well advised to keep that under control as you pass, literally, through the hands of the TSA. God help you if you caught with a simple box cutter.

One cannot enter a courthouse or a federal building or a school with a knife. My last journey by train downtown was to go to my bank near the top floor of the Federal Building but I was stopped from entering by my pocketknife. Not some dangerous thing, it was little more than a penknife. One of the 2 dozen guards screening people entering the building told me that they had no means to keep it for me while I did my business and maybe I could just go outside and hide it in the bushes and come back for it when I was done. I wonder sometimes how many people fall for that scam.

On a recent trip I arrived at an airport with my usual flight bag but I forgot that I had put my grandfather's knife in that bag when my father passed it on to me a few weeks earlier when we made a road trip to visit my parents in another state. I wasn't going to let the TSA confiscate it and fortunately they now have an arrangement where one can pay $25.00 to mail it home.

I don't routinely slip a knife into my pocket. They are handy for many things beyond most mortal ken but I'll only remember to put one in my pocket if we're driving somewhere. The little hatch in our Subaru Outback that guards the dashboard vault that holds the usb chargers sometimes gets stuck in the down position and has to be jimmied open with......a thin bladed pocketknife.

some of the dozens we have around the house

Saturday, November 17, 2018


I noticed this last week that there was an issue concerning the NRA challenging doctors and the AMA to stay in their own lane and stop trying to abuse the Civil Rights we enjoy under the Constitution. The doctors claim to be outraged about gun violence because, guns.

The NRA should simply advise those in the medical profession who would deny us our Civil Rights to work harder to prevent the over 250,000 deaths every year attributed to medical practice. Guns are a pale shadow of the real killer we know as medical malpractice and maybe doctors should improve their house before attempting to overthrow our rights.

Honestly, when you look at all the so-called scientific studies just on food science that health experts got completely wrong, how can you believe anything they say? Why do we all accept that when we get a diagnosis, we should also get a second opinion? It's a common refrain in answer to a common problem which boils down to the fact that even highly educated and trained people can and do make mistakes.

I could see their point if I believed in the nanny state. If the AMA and doctors were sincere, they would also request a ban on all use of automobiles, buses, electricity, bicycles, swimming pools and beaches. Yet the only one that bothers them is the one that is Constitutionally protected.

Tuesday, November 13, 2018


I had hoped, 30 years ago, that David Palmer would write more. Sadly, he didn't. Tracking was his last work and that was decades ago.

I was denied the opportunity to try to turn my little girl into a serious menace but I strongly suspect her mother has taken care of that. Not my kind of menace, it goes without saying. I would have taught her how to sail, build a campfire, shoot, replace a tire on a car and many of those sorts of things girls should know.

I've used the picture a time or two here but one more won't hurt. If you find the book and hate it to death, please don't share it with me. A young woman, striding confidently into the future was all I hoped for when my daughter was born. She might make it still.

Mr. Palmer
has a way with words.
Preflighting the plane, including draining the fuel sumps, took a little longer. But during flight training, not departing with water in the fuel had been the subject of so much discussion, delivered with such frequency and intensity, that by now I could probably eat a bacon cheeseburger while scrubbing the temple floor bareheaded on the Sabbath with less personal distress than not verifying that the fuel was water-free before a flight.
Back when I used to fly I was most careful about getting the water out of my fuel. Later, as CHENG I was most careful to not to have that crap in my fuel. When my ENC came up to see me on the bridge, one beautiful day in the Santa Barbara ship chanel, southbound to our homeport in San Diego after our epic voyage to San Francisco, he took me out back where the captain couldn't see or hear us and he was sweating as he told me all he was getting out of our last fuel tank was water. We still had a couple hundred miles to go at that point. Things were not looking shiny.

I still remember doing a hotrefuel on the Desert Duck. It settled onto the flight deck as helicopters do and one of their aviation bosun's mates took to the cockpit a sample glass of JP-5 and held it up so the pilot could see what color his fuel was. It was as clear as water. It looked like water. This was back when nobody cared if we stripped the fuel tanks daily. There was seldom any water or sediment in our fuel samples.

Back in 1984, a pilot and only a pilot was the sole apostle of true fuel. This pilot shut his helicopter down. A hot refuel was no longer going to happen because one look at that sample of fuel convinced him it was water. What we had was some JP-5 of unusal clarity and without a tinge of color.

I was a little surprised he didn't insist on a Pensky Martens test.

I did it a few years later when a fuel barge came alongside at Sitrah to fill my tanks. I took a look at the offered fuel before I let it flow and said, no and we'll test it. What happens when one puts gasoline into diesel engines results in a diesel engine explosion and finding bits of your former engine buried in the wooden hull, if you're lucky. My counterpart on the other ship at anchor that took that fuel found that out the hard way when his generator blew to bits in the forward engine room. He was lucky nobody was killed. He still had his primary generator blow up and wouldn't be sweeping mines again for some time.

The nice thing about Cessnas, as I recall, is that you can sample the fuel in the wings just by pushing the sampler into the tank on the bottom of the wing. Water has a higher specific gravity than fuel and will be the first thing to flow out. Now that I think about it, I only ever flew Cessnas.

Monday, November 12, 2018


It was right there.


It was wear a silly hat day.

Not me. I only wear them to keep the sun off or hide bedhead.


Macron delivered a stinging indictment of nationalism in a 20-minute speech and called on leaders to learn the lessons of the past.
"Nationalism is a betrayal of patriotism," he said.
"By saying our interests come first and others don't matter we are erasing what makes a nation precious, what makes it live, what makes it great and most importantly of all, its moral values."
You stupid flaming idiot, what part of France died at Verdun in a display of nationalism and the fact that you lost sight of it does sit in your favor? You represent France, not Congo or Egypt or Libya. What part of that escaped your refined european sense of being.


Where exactly was it spelled out that we had to lose our countries?

Oddly enough, to wish that your country survives is not racism or fascism.


Acosta lost sight of his professionalism is the news and the truth.

When his network rushed to conceal it, you screwed us out of the truth.

And the facts are, he was a little bitch.

And doesn't SNL try to make it look like Trump was the dopey one.

As Pat Healey used to say, Jim, your position has been established.


I don't fall asleep. I have to reach out to grasp it and I seldom do. It's elusive to get there. Once asleep it is hard for me to give it up. I'm something of a night owl although the only thing to fly through my window and bite me was a bat. Perhaps I'm a nightbat.

Sunday, November 11, 2018


It’s a point Ace of Spades has been making lately:

Either we have a two-way social compact or we have no social compact at all, and it’s just pure Street Power and vigilantism and vengeance raids.

I very carefully buried our social compact in my backyard before I left California.


It made it hard to find. Real hard. I wanted the fab 5

Close your eyes, look up and listen.


I used to carry but it was in its holster by my side and for use on the enemy should he come calling and outside these United States of America.

I never carried at home in these United States and perhaps my reasons were selfish. I did not ever want to be the subject of a law suit and just about every use of a gun that leaves a living corpse ends in a lawsuit.

People I know carry and I have no problems with that. What I figured to do was to avoid going to those places that made carry a practical and necessary form of dress. I just don't go to any place that I think will feature armed killers. This is somewhat harder to do now that schools, colleges and theaters are such places.

I am also, now, 29 years older than I ever thought I would be. I have, by and large, done what I came to do and if the exit is shown via a gun wielded by an enemy, that's not really anything new for me. I so don't want to lose my mind and slip into dementia and senility. I watch in quiet despair as the smartest man I ever knew slips away moment by moment. He was the smartest man I ever knew and taught quantum physics at West Point in a gap year after getting his Masters Degree and building a nuclear reactor in a swimming pool as a break from fighting the war in Vietnam.

OTGH, I almost always carry a locking blade knife whenever I leave the house. As the reader can see, closing in for a kill in a terminal attack is still an option. Short of a shot to the head, I figure I can reach or die trying.


Blatantly stolen from Ace.


Take a minute to read about the destroyer of the universe at the mouse killer.


Today is that day that ended the Great War, although yanks fought on for another year or two for no reason in Russia in the long forgotten war. I like how wikipedia still maintains the fiction that President Wilson was the one making decisions long after his brain had died and his wife Edith ran the United States as one of our unelected presidents.

It is also my mother's birthday.


There were people I never would have let hold a rifle in the field and that was my last 19 years in the Navy where we carried rifles. Given the opportunity to leave behind the useless and dangerous, I did, every single time. My wars were kind of come as you want affairs. I really truly didn't want the ones who didn't know how to shoot with me and so I didn't bring them to my little wars. I could be choosy back then.

Still, this is a date that lives forever just as 7 December does. If you have the time, watch the video to the end. On my first ship, I did have one of those guys who crossdecked to be on LaSalle. He maybe had an IQ of 80. As my CHENG used to say, "You have the smartest and dumbest sailors in your division." I used to respond, with it was "A" division. We're auxiliaries. We sort of make things happen everywhere else.


A plucky little bear.

Saturday, November 10, 2018



Wanta do a trillion dollar damage to America?

Build a fire and let it get out of control in California.

That's what illegals do.

Used to live there for 30 odd years. I used to drive this road, a lot.


Friday, November 9, 2018


I had the good fortune in the Navy to work for and with many men of outstanding wit and character. One of the best was Wild Bill Snyder. He was the one that told the story of himself at a younger age and mind you, when I worked for him he was nought but a Lieutenant Commander, so a pipsqueak in these rarefied times.

He was in a billet, chief engineer of steam, that used to be what they call a spot promotion because hard. His old destroyer was in company with a brand new cruiser fresh out of the shipyard and due to commence its full speed trial. The insolent cruiser captain sent, via a flashlight, an insulting message to the ancient destroyer telling it to try to remain within visual signalling range and set about its full speed trial.

Both ships raced to the horizon except that the cruiser suffered a crippling engineering casualty. The ancient destroyer kept blasting along until at the very horizon sent back a flashlight message of its own to the crippled cruiser.

"Slowing down to remain within visual signalling range."

A ship's captain of any rank used to have joy in getting underway. Not sure if it remains the same today.


I reread old books, all the time.

Places and time. I store memory by both because we moved a lot. This time of year, I recall, sitting on the floor, legs crisscross, as my daughter would have it, listening as my father read aloud, The Lion The Witch and the Wardrobe.

I haven't been back to Narnia in decades but it was always a friendly harbor when i was young.


The Sweep was my fourth ship. I was taut early on (yes yes, I know how to spell taught but what the hell?) My first day, the CO confirms my letters of Officer of the Deck which also means Con and hands me the deck while telling me to snuggle up to that bouy, number 5, as I recall. He comes back up from Combat and tells me no. What I need to do is have the ship embrace that buoy in the San Diego Ship channel while he and they initialize the GPS hunting 3M nav system from Hell.

Snuggle up we did. One of the things I can do well is drive a ship. When the skipper came back up out of Combat and asked where was the buoy, it was enough to point, down.

When the big movers got underway, outbound we didn't play. We'd leave the channel to the carriers and LPH and LHA. Those things are really dangerous.

Thursday, November 8, 2018


From the instapundit. Talking Obama.

He’s the bride at every funeral and the corpse at every wedding.


Oh, yeah, I'll stop the world for you.

You know who you are.


Our cars are full of them.

I would be happy to serve as a juror in any case involving anti-fa or baseball bats against the fascist thugs the press calls ant-fa. I would let anybody who beat them to death with a bat or hammer off.

Because, justice.


I missed this decade. I was there but, not quite, but I see our elite are still fulling hoping for Stalin.

Wednesday, November 7, 2018


Sessions was despicable. He reminds me of Chidi as he vacillitated to death in office. With this Senate, President Trump has a chance to nominate and get approved somebody willing to tear the livers out of his enemies and make them die. He has a chance to terminate corruption in politics now and it would be nice to see it happen in my lifetime. He should also open a corruption investigation into both Mueller and the boob at the FBI who was let go....and Brennan.

A counter to the boorish war launched by democrats with Mueller might be a re-opening of the entire case against Hillary Clinton launched by a sort of Terminator who is willing to go to the very end of the earth, or at least her server, to pillory Hillary.....and Cherly Mills and Abedin and Wasserman.

I'm looking forward to it.


I know them of old.


It does look like Nancy Pelosi (millionaire on nothing but government salary), will be our new Speaker of the House sometime this week. Couldn't happen to a more deserving bunch of people. That's all of us by the way. Trump will eat the brain dead Pelosi alive. A great, if evil mind has vanished, as they do with age. I wonder if the majority in the House will see that or simply cave, as they do, to evil. Pelosi is not half the conniver she used to be.

The XXV amendment rears it's ugly ugly head at this point. It bears close reading. Nobody actually knows what it means. Surprise!

Beyond that unhappy ginnungagap lies the fact that the succession to the office of President is clearly laid out by law. If Pelosi and anti-fa or some more God-damned actors manage to kill the President and the Vice President, the Speaker of the House takes on the office of President.

It will be Warre then. What Hobbes described will be real on Earth. Bellum omnium contra omnes.

I've got a warm fuzzy. I don't know about you. I do need to buy some more ammunition.

Tuesday, November 6, 2018


But don't vote for the crazy ones.

Sunday, November 4, 2018


This pretty much nails it. 
A tale of a backseat car rape, saying it “was a tactic” to try to derail the judge’s confirmation to the Supreme Court. 
Sen. Chuck Grassley, chairman of the Judiciary Committee revealed the fraud in a letter to the FBI and Justice Department Friday, asking them to prosecute Judy Munro-Leighton for lying to and obstructing Congress. 
Mr. Grassley said Ms. Munro-Leighton is a left-wing activist who hijacked another “Jane Doe” anonymous report about a backseat rape and claimed it as her own story, calling it a “vicious assault.” 
“I am Jane Doe from Oceanside CA — Kavanaugh raped me,” Ms. Munro-Leighton wrote in an Oct. 3 email claiming to have been a victim of the judge. 
Mr. Grassley’s investigators tried to reach her for a month but were unsuccessful until this week, when they spoke to her by phone and she confessed that she was not the original Jane Doe, and “did that as a way to grab attention.”
She admitted to the false allegation, and said she has actually never met Justice Kavanaugh.



I used to see the CIA offices all over town. Oh sure, people said that it was the Culinary Institute but I know butter.

Saw this yesterday on the way home from the orchards out east.


Found this on the internet. An interesting retrospective on nation and one that is lost to history.


They never stood a chance.

Abide With God


I think they started in Love Field but I flew them all the time because cheap and friendly worked for me. They had an every hour, on the hour, flight from Oakland to San Diego which was where I was going and flying back from and were an actual pleasure to fly back in the beginning when the planes were less than half full. They had their own terminal, #2, in Oakland and the metal detectors there didn't work so I never had any trouble taking 4 pounds of surgical steel through them without getting stopped even once, for years. They really did have flight attendants just like this on many of their flights and they played games with free drinks for passengers in the winning row. It was all good.

For a few years I flew them a lot to Texas and back to San Diego and flying was easy even after 9/11.

Saturday, November 3, 2018


I found this gem last night after watching 'Educating Rita' and thought it was hilarious. It's sad that nobody under 50 will have a clue just how bad this makes Acosta look since none of them have ever heard of the Mary Tyler Moore Show.
Anyway, it's difficult to imagine the pain and heartbreak Mr. Acosta has felt over the past two years. All he wants to do is get the facts by making a spectacle of himself in front of a camera. He's an old-school journalist who gets the story by making himself the story. He's Ted Baxter without the brains or shame or self-awareness. He bravely speaks truth to power, regardless of the complete lack of risk to his career or person.

Friday, November 2, 2018


There are still those who say that the point of any inspection conducted by the echelons above command is to determine the actual readiness or worthiness of a subordinate unit. We call those guys losers. In the real world, inspecting is done with an eye to destroy by admin what cannot be destroyed by operations. We have a fair but low opinion of it and that's why we all decided to join the inspection hunting crew. It's a lot like hunting grizzly with a bow and arrow. One arrow. You go up against the odds and to win is to win and survive. Losing is for losers.

I was an early advocate to the navy's hunting program. The powers that be (COMNAVSURFLANT) decided that one of the ships under the administrative control of COMPHIBRON TWELVE must be given an Operational Propulsion Light Off Exam  (OPPE) in the Middle East, which was her homeport for many a year. They came, they saw, they got an arrow. The Chief Engineer on the ship was an LDO. The other officers in Engineering other than me and the Main Propulsion Assistant were LDO and Warrants. The CO (Captain) was a prior enlisted Hospital Corpsman. Those guys from OPPE and the Propulsion Examining Board never stood a chance.

"After all," said the Chief Engineer, "what are they going to do? Weld us to the pier?"

SURFLANT, unabashed, followed up with an INSURV. I admit, I have no idea how ships are sacrificed to the board of Survey but LaSalle was tossed into the blender and came out, as expected, unwelded to the pier.

These are both good and worthy inspections and worth the time and effort put into into them but they lost any sheen of meaning for me as inspections, per se. They were games and ship's company played one side and the inspectors were the enemy. We played to win. We used all the means a navy at war would use to win against an enemy. We did the same thing when the 3M team came through to give us our 3M inspection on my last day on LaSalle. Finding deficiencies was a down check and led to failure so, war to the knife against the inspectors.

I followed through as I had been taught when I was inspected later in every realm. From 3M inspections to COMSEC to OPPE and Boiler Inspections, it was a game. We played to win. That's one of the things about games. When, in the rare event you do run up against a rule mongering aggregate creature from Hell, you tend to play by their rules. You just have to know them better and be willing to outflank them without a moment's notice.

And so we did.

There are some things you can't play. You better be ready at a moment's notice to conduct shore bombardment because that's the way my ship played it. Wait until the last day before the qualification expired to actually haul ass out to the range and shoot. Prior to the shooting one had to prove that one could acquire the beacons from the gunnery direction teams ashore. That required radios. Naturally, on the day this became a requirement and must fill, none of the ships installed radios worked. There's a way around that sort of crap and that's what the portable radio program was there for.

If you are required to light off right now and get underway to shift berths so an LST can take your spot on the pier, well, that's why you only open one reduction gear at a time for annual inspection PMS. You can always get underway on one shaft.

We were exempt by direction of COMNAVSURFPAC from all inspections during the Mine Battle Force rotations to the Persian Gulf. There really wasn't much point and the staff knew it. Our Immediate Superior in Command at MINEGROUP ONE had a hardon for my ship and threw us to the wolves, inspection-wise. We passed them all with about 15% of ship's complement. It was an exciting time. I can see why big game hunters get such a rush.

In the space of 3 months we passed a Boiler Inspection, a Diesel Inspection, a SURFPAC 3M inspection and were only spared an INSURV and OPPE because it was a foregone conclusion and the Board of Survey and the Propulsion Examining Board declined to inspect a ship built in 1954 that they knew was bound to fail every single category because designed and built to a Navy specification obsolete long before INSURV reared it's ugly head.

I don't know how they play the game these days. Based on collisions in the Sea of Japan and western Pacific I suspect that the fleet staff started playing the game and that is probably not a good thing. I used to go to the Third Fleet scheduling conferences and the Vice Admiral and his staff were not so much taken up with making sure that operational commitments were met since that was Seventh Fleet's issue and concern. Third Fleet staff was there to make sure that all the required Training and Certifying was scheduled in order that only certified units made their way into the operational control of Seventh and Fifth Fleets. I think the guys on the Blue Ridge gamed the system and that was a mistake.

Nobody was terribly concerned about the games we played. On the first ship, it was too late to whine about any shortfalls or deficiencies of staff. My time in San Diego was spent on non-deployable ships that weren't on anybody's real list of concern. Harry W. Hill was going into a 9 month dry docking in Seattle. The mighty Pluck was a very good ship, arguably, before the Rotations, the best on the west coast, but it wasn't going anywhere with it's obsolete and knackered Packard engines. Everybody knew that. They were amazed it made it to Canada and back on all 4 of those engines.


These were the temporary rules in effect during World War II at the Richmond Golf Club in England.

That's golfers for you. Whatever happens, they'll gut it out to finish play and get to the beer at the 19th hole.

Thursday, November 1, 2018


I had occasion to remember this quote this morning and repeated it for one who had never heard it before, so I thought, why not put it into this fount of knowledge I maintain.
"Those who are clever and industrious I appoint to the General Staff. 
Use can under certain circumstances be made of those who are stupid and lazy. 
The man who is clever and lazy qualifies for the highest leadership posts. He has the requisite nerves and the mental clarity for difficult decisions. 
But whoever is stupid and industrious must be got rid of, for he is too dangerous.”
This really applies to all organizations and not just the armed forces.