Tuesday, June 30, 2009

I will be off-net for the next month. Back OOA 8/1/2009. No tweets, posts, or email. Nothing. Dropping off completely. Have a gr8 month.

Dropping out, 2009 style: I will be off-net for the next month. Back OOA 8/1/2009. No tweets, posts, or email. Nothing. Dropping off completely. Have a gr8 month.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Just where have I gone?

I've gone to Twitter, actually. I'm currently enamored of micro-blogging, working to keep individual posts to 140 characters or less. Those micro-posts don't show up here, but posts here do get sent out over the Twitter stream.

You can follow along on Twitter here.

For the several dozen of you subscribed to this blog's RSS feed, you can subscribe to an RSS feed of the Twitter stream.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Monday, June 15, 2009

A recruiter who wouldn't speak about recruiting

Buried deep in Rachel Raskin-Zrihen's Uncle Sam wants you -- maybe in the Contra Costa Times was this gold nugget:
A local . . . recruiter who declined to reveal his name, said his service branch is also seeing more people wanting in, and fewer leaving once their tours are up.
Er, whatever happened to speaking about what you know? He's a recruiter, right, so everything he said was within his scope. No need to be coy.

Compare Petty Officer I'm-not-going-to-tell-you-my-name to this:
Kelly Walker of Tracy, 24, serves . . . at the Vallejo Station. She said she's been with the [service] about 1 1/2 years.

"I was living in Florida, bartending, and that got old fast," Walker said to explain why she joined the [smallest branch of the military]. "I had done Sea Cadets as a kid and really liked that, and I wanted to find a career."

Walker said she considered the Navy, but settled on the [sister service] and has not regretted her decision. She said she especially enjoys the search and rescue and law enforcement aspects of the job.

"I'm glad I joined when I did. I have a roommate who lost her job and that's an eye-opener," she added. "Compared to people trying to hack it in the real world, this is great."
That's the way to do it.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Danger Room Interviews "The Thadmiral"

Okay, well that's not how Nathan Hodge refers to Signo 1; however, Mr. Hodge does have a great post at Danger Room about the Commandant's thoughts as he looks south of the border: [Service] Chief Eyes Narco-Navy Threat
Last week, the White House released a new counternarcotics strategy for the U.S.-Mexico border that calls for better intelligence and new surveillance technology to stem the flow of drugs, weapons and cash between the two countries. But according to the head of the [United States' smallest military branch], Mexico’s vulnerable southern border is an equally serious concern.

In a conversation with Danger Room, . . . Commandant Adm. Thad Allen said that between 75 percent and 80 percent of all the cocaine moving toward the United States – on go-fast boats, fishing vessels, and narco-submarines — first goes to Mexico, where it can be broken into much smaller packages that are harder to detect.

“The southern border that should be of concern to us as well is Mexico’s southern border, between Mexico, Honduras and that area with Belize,” he said. “Once those products get into Mexico, a couple things happen that really, really increase the problem set for Mexico and the United States. Everything gets distributed into smaller loads, and it’s much harder to identify and intercept. And number two, the drug trafficking organizations are increasingly paying off their transportation people and folks in Mexico with drugs instead of money. So they are creating a user population in Mexico that creates another corrosive effect.”
Good stuff. And if you don't check out Danger Room every once in a while, you should. Always something in the way of food for thought.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Taking Charge: & now we know why it took so long for the Service to release the report

Very interesting news about the sinking of the F/V PATRIOT and the response from America's smallest military branch. From CG News: [Service] releases results of investigation into fishing vessel Patriot response efforts.
The commander of the . . . Atlantic Area here released Thursday the final action memo detailing the results of an administrative investigation into the [Service]’s response efforts during a January search and rescue case off the coast of Gloucester, Mass.

Matteo Russo and John Orlando died when their 54-foot commercial fishing vessel, the Patriot, sank about 14 nautical miles southeast of Gloucester, Jan. 3.

“Our review of this case showed that we were slow to launch search and rescue assets because of poor collection and analysis of information, and decision making regarding the Patriot’s status,” said Vice Adm. Robert J. Papp, Jr. “The remedial actions I’m requiring are designed to ensure that our people have the right tools, experience and training to be able to act quickly and decisively when emergent and unpredictable cases happen.”
Wow. Slow to launch. Poor collection & analysis. Poor decision making.

CC/RCC watches, no matter the level within the organization, can be a crucible. Often, controllers will breath a sigh of relief: "But for the grace of God, there go I..."
A copy of the Final Action Memo, which includes all of Papp’s opinions and required actions, can be downloaded/viewed at: http://www.uscgnewengland.com/go/doctype/778/33818/
Great read.
In January, the . . . 1st District in Boston initiated a Search and Rescue Case Study to review the Patriot case. But by April Papp was becoming anxious to know what issues had been found.
I'll bet. I know a reporter at a little newspaper that was hot on the trail and throwing gasoline on the fire making certain everyone knew there was more to be learned than what had already been released.
“A [Coastie/Guardian] never wants to lose anyone while on watch, and I wanted to know what issues had been found so we could begin to implement any needed changes to operations in my area of responsibility,” said Papp. “I asked for a working copy of the case study and when I noted the extent of the 1st District command center’s involvement in the case I made the decision to convene an administrative investigation. Assigning an independent, third-party investigator to maximize the amount of information available and ensure there was an additional, independent level of review, gave us a broader look at all aspects of our response to the Patriot case,” added Papp.
I applaud Admiral Papp, Atlantic Area, and the Service for taking such an open view and perspective. And, while I know the family and community was upset with the pace, hopefully they are, now that they have been personally briefed, more understanding of why the delay.
“We are committed to providing the best service possible to the maritime community, and reviewing unusual cases like the Patriot helps us to improve our search and rescue operations,” said Papp.

. . .

“I have personally spoken with Mrs. Russo to pass on my condolences for her family’s loss, and to express my regret for the length of time this investigation has taken,” said Papp. “I also sent a team earlier today to personally share the final report with them and answer any additional questions. The Russo and Orlando families have my commitment that this review of our response will help us perform more effectively and decisively, even during uncertainty, and may one day help to save someone’s life.”
May we, indeed, be a learning organization and take these findings, opinions, and required actions to heart, fully internalizing them.

The guardians of Liberty

The guardians of liberty?
Originally uploaded by AnotherOz
Great pic.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Moving this blog's Twitter feed to @AnotherCGBlog away from @pastinson

While the headline says most of the message, here's the gist. I've decided to move my CG-specific Twitter posts away from @pastinson over to @AnotherCGBlog. You can follow along at Twitter for both @AnotherCGBlog and @pastinson. I also, earlier this week, I created @OrgConsultant for organizational and consulting tweets. I'll be re-racking things over the next couple of days. Questions or concerns or whatever, comment below.

What the Army has done

Originally uploaded by Army.mil
From Noah Shachtman at the Danger Room: Army Orders Bases: Stop Blocking Twitter, Facebook, Flickr.
The Army has ordered its network managers to give soldiers access to social media sites like Facebook, Flickr, and Twitter, Danger Room has learned. That move reverses a years-long trend of blocking the web 2.0 locales on military networks.
Will the other services follow suit? Will America's smallest military step out and join the Army in doing what is, clearly, the right thing if we are to become nimble, change capable, agile, and learning-focused?

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

What helicopter are we giving to India?

This caught my eye:
US offers . . . choppers to India

New Delhi, June 8, IRNA -- The US has offered to lease out 12 of its ... twin-engine helicopters to India which is looking to strengthen its coastal security following the Mumbai terror attacks.

"As the acquisition process will take time, we (India) want to have 12 twin-engine helicopters on lease . . . The US has offered to lease out its . . . helicopters [which are used by the United States' smallest military branch] to us," a senior Defense Ministry official said in New Delhi on Monday, Indian official media reported.
Do we have frames just sitting in the desert along side some HU-25's just waiting to be brought back into service? Are they 60's or 65's or something else?

Monday, June 8, 2009

Well that didn't help

Give Way
Originally uploaded by jay2boat

Guess staff doesn't want this blog to sail under the radar...

Well, truth be known, the only people who aren't reading here are those people who don't know it's here. I know, that's blatantly obvious.

Who knows this is here: Well, Signo 1 and Signo 3, for sure. And the PA watch desk at OC-30. The good folks in CG-092. And the 361 people who follow me on Facebook. And the 162 folks who follow on Twitter. It's no secret, for sure.

Who doesn't know this is here, and will likely never stumble on it, at least coming from a search engine: Joe Sixpack.


Welcome, reader.

Sign that young man up

Check out this story from WXII in North Carolina.
Two Piedmont teenagers who helped save the lives of two strangers told their story on Saturday.

The two boys said they were just at the right place at the right time when they saw two men in the water after their boat had capsized in the Yadkin River Friday night.
Read the whole story or view the news clip here.

Here's hoping that a recruiter is working with young Mr. Fields...

Thursday, June 4, 2009

DCMS Blog deemed too sensitive for public consumption

The fifth military service decided that one if its official blogs was too sensitive for public consumption so the entire website has been locked down so that no one can see the divisive material:
Okay, in truth I'm pretty sure it's an oversight and someone has just toggled the wrong button.

h/t to comments at An Unofficial Blog.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Powerpoint... Come on, you know you hate it...

And you hate it because when someone is really good with it, it just blows your mind:
Sad to say, that one wasn't by an actual member or contractor the fifth military service, but rather a professional... who took a traditional, old school ppt and gave it umph wrapped in a make-over...

h/t to Ryan at An Unofficial Blog.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Fifth Military Service left off the list, again

Seems it happens a bit... and often not from where you'd expect to find it. Yes, Americans are quick to forget their are five branches of the American military.

Here's a little bit about the corps of cadets at Norwich University:
Military colleges have a long and proud tradition in American history and were not designed solely for students planning military careers. The Corps of Cadets prepares students to become competent and responsible citizens. Norwich, established in 1819, was the first of all private military colleges in the country. Our founder, Captain Alden Partridge, understood that structured military lifestyle combined with rigorous academics would benefit those pursuing careers in both the military world and the private sector. His vision resulted in the creation of the Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC). As the birthplace of ROTC, Norwich houses all four branches of the armed services—Army, Navy, Marines and Air Force. Our Corps of Cadets program allows individuals to gain military experience while earning a degree.
The reason this one pains me so is that if any school ought to know better, it's Norwich University. Afterall, the university's president, Dr. Richard Schneider, holds a commission as a general officer in the Vermont Militia... and is a retired Reserve flag officer... from that fifth branch of the American military.

Well, this certainly takes things to a different level

BERT, C-144, H-65
Originally uploaded by Tidewater Muse
When I started to read Michael DeKort's recently-filed federal law suit, I thought that it weighed in about where my dissertation ought to be right now...

h/t to Mandy Smithberger of POGO.