Category Archives: Uncategorized

The Amazing Internet

What has amazed me over the years is how much the Internet – and specifically the World Wide Web, as connected people around the world.

But not only the WWW, but the search engines that put it all together. They are equally important because if you can’t find it what good is it?

A long time friend and I have been programmers – me since the early 80s, Larry since the 70s. We both talk of time to time of the creative destruction we’ve seen in our industry.

Billion dollar companies for awhile, then has-beens in the computer landscape.

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Scum stealing from soldiers angles

Beware a fake web site

Soldiers Angles real URL is soldiersangles.org

Fake site is soldierangles.org

Note the lack of “s” at the end of soldier.

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Fortunes of War

By lex, on February 24th, 2012

We remember that, as a young lieutenant, Timothy Dorsey shot down a USAF RF-4C Phantom during a training exercise, an act that was deemed both deliberate and illogical by the mishap board. The event ended his flying career, but did not derail his forward progress in the Navy. His nomination for flag rank rests with the Senate Armed Services Committee.

What we did not know, until now, was the fate of the man he shot down: *

Col. Ross, a Milton, Ga., resident, estimates he has spent well over $100,000 on medical bills, paid by depleting his savings. He lives on Air Force retirement benefits and Social Security disability checks.

In one of his dozens of surgeries, doctors three years ago performed an anterior lumbar interbody fusion. Surgeons “removed my guts” during the eight-hour operation to reach his spine, then put them back, he said.

In 2010, a flight surgeon who had begun treating him in 1991 wrote on his behalf to the Department of Veterans Affairs, which was reviewing his disability status.

“I would like to assure you that indeed his current medical problems and level of disability are unquestionably and completely attributable to his combat-related shoot down and the subsequent injuries he received in the following high-speed ejection,” wrote Lt. Col. Scott Phillips. “He can no longer walk more than a few yards without assistance.”

I bear no personal animus towards Captain Dorsey. People make mistakes, sometimes even inexplicable ones. No doubt he has worked hard and long since that fateful day to refashion himself to excellence in another career path.

Still, it’s ironic that the negligent shooter should find himself on the brink of making flag rank, and the shootee should struggle with the VA to defend  his disability payments.

No one ever said that life was fair.

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** Original link gone; replaced – Ed. 

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Sensitivity

By lex, on February 15th, 2012

The Navy’s EOD school gains some: *

The phrase “Initial Success or Total Failure” has long served as the unofficial motto of explosive ordnance disposal technicians in the U.S. military.

Until recently, the slogan hung on a wall at the Naval EOD school at Eglin. It was removed after senior EOD leaders decided the words were insensitive.

“It holds some potential insensitivity and implies that our fallen and wounded EOD warriors have somehow failed,” said Joy Samsel, deputy public affairs officer at Naval Education and Training Command in Pensacola. “We don’t want to do that to families.”

Samsel said the EOD school has never had an official motto and has no plans to adopt one.

Rear Adm. Michael Tillotson, commander of the Navy Expeditionary Combat Command, took issue with the slogan and said that “to imply that failure is an option is unacceptable.”

Explosive ordnance disposal is an exceptionally stressful and rigorous profession, and those that have chosen that path are truly our nation’s unsung heroes over the last decade. But the truth of their profession is this: If you succeed at your task, a bomb is disabled. If you fail, you pay for it with your life. It’s binary. That doesn’t imply any level of personal failure – some of these devices are truly infernal – but it is a fact that if bomb goes off in an uncontrolled fashion the mission was not successfully accomplished. Ergo, “total failure”.

Warriors do not thrive when coddled, and flag officers used to have more substantive issues to concern themselves with.

Honestly, sometimes I despair of us.

** Original link gone’ replaced – Ed. 

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Whidbey Squiblets

By lex, on February 21st, 2012

So, landed around 1515 yesterday in Seattle to low clouds and soft rain. Stepped off the curb at the rental car lot to cold wind and puddles. Which the latter are apparently a phenomenon that exhibits itself after a prolonged period of precipitation. After a bit of head-scratching, I had to admit a previous acquaintance with this anomaly.

In my pre-Sandy Eggo days, of course.

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Good Article From A Former C2 Driver

It’s a long read, but parts are humorous, parts show you the “fun” of flying such an old (50,000 hours) plane that is so critical for carrier operations.

H/T to comjam.

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Tag Alongs

By lex, on February 7th, 2012

A UK frigate and a French destroyer were a part of a US-led flotilla which entered the Arabian Gulf late last month, in defiance of Iranian threats. Today the UK Daily Telegraph reports that the international flavor of the force was, well – forced:

Defence sources have revealed that the Americans only relented and allowed a Royal Navy frigate to join the mission following an intervention from Nicolas Sarkozy, the French president.

The revelation that US defence chiefs saw little military value in UK participation will raise new questions about Britain’s international clout after Coalition defence cuts.

Amid rising tensions in the region, the Royal Navy last month deployed HMS Argyll, a Type 23 frigate, to the Gulf.

The ship accompanied a US carrier strike group made up of an aircraft carrier with a full complement of fighters, a heavy cruiser and several destroyers.

A French frigate, the La Motte-Picquet, was also part of the flotilla which sailed through the Straits of Hormuz. Iran has staged wargames in the area and threatened to block the straits, a vital supply route for oil exports…

The disparity in vessel numbers means the British and French presence in the flotilla was of greater diplomatic than military significance.

It didn’t feel that way back in 2003, when the ship on which I had the honor to serve upon in the same waters was for a time guarded by a Royal Navy air defense destroyer, and we were right glad to have her.

Times change, I suppose.

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