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25 July 2017

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AC

Would be great if this included stopping any US military involvement with providing humanitarian aid or working alongside aid agencies. It's not the role of the military and creates a dangerous situation for aid workers as they can potentially be identified with the US military presence or actions in a given country.

Fellow Traveler

Who will teach Nation Building now?

Perhaps W can do a stint at Carlisle.

mike

TTG -

About time! The Warrior Monk strikes again. Hopefully the new USD(P&R) can fend off congress. But some arm wrestling is also going to be down at the operational level where the definition of "unnecessary training" is going to be made.

confusedponderer

FT,
"Who will teach Nation Building now?"

I am old fashioned. I propose that all students interested in 'learning Nation Building' should be obliged to do smething practical, just to get a feel for that doing something involves work (so to speak: involves doing), thinking (with the brain, not power point) and some actual planning.

One can think about having the ambitionous students ... build a road (required: time, strength, workers, materials, tools and tool vehicles, suitable terrain, cooperative neighbours), or a wooden house (required: time, strength, workers, materials, nails or screws, paint, cooperative neighbours ...), walking some 80 miles through an unknown rough area with a map (required: times, hardness, brains, eyes, strength, working legs, map & compass, ability to read a map, perhaps a tent, something to eat and drink, basic medication, weather proof clothing, probably a hat) etc. pp.

All practical stuff like like that. Perhaps that approach will produce more than go to a class and learn about redoing nations or, say, rolling dice.

On the plus-plus side, even if folks won't learn anything from it, work would at least do some good to their body ... 'he's dumb as bread, but, oh boy, he can root 200 year old trees with the hands!'

That said, tree puller brigades are something that the world is so far still lacking. But think about how deterrent it would be to threaten to let it loose. No one with a functional brain would want these folks to come to a visit, especially when you live in a desert country that is short of trees.

Old Microbiologist

They need to rethink DOPMA as well. Only sycophants rise to the top in the current system.

I will give an example (I have many but this guy is one of the worst). My last (horrible) boss was a full Colonel and a Perfumed Prince but of the Texas A&M ilk and was a protege of SecDef Gates. He had never served overseas in his career and had gone from being commissioned as a Infantry Officer then branch transferred to Aviation (at CPT) and then again branch transferred to Medical Services Corps where he was subsequently sent for a LTCT PhD at where? You guessed it: Texas A&M where he basically did no actual research. After that he was assigned to WRAIR and served as a logistics officer for the Malaria research Division (recent PhD officers are required to put to use their recently acquired expertise in research but this POS was only trusted to order supplies. From there he went to West Point as a Professor and spent several years there and then returned to be our Division Director for Microbiology at WRAIR. He sucked up ass enough to be assigned as Overseas Lab Commander for our laboratory there and was relieved for cause roughly 6 months later and was quietly retired after a very quiet Courts Martial for misappropriation of funds, sexual harassment (proposed sex for promotions to 2 female lieutenants as he was also the Corps Senior Career Manager for the Micro MOS as well as consultant to the Surgeon General for Microbiology), and charged with racial discrimination (he hated orientals and had already been charged by one of my staff scientists who was Chinese who won his case). My point is that only under this current system of Officer promotions could someone so obviously horrible rise to the top. Luckily he burnt himself out but the damage he caused to our programs at the WRAIR were never repaired. My only consolation is that he was reduced to LTC for retirement and he lost the other half of his retirement in his second divorce (he lost the first 50% in his first divorce). I ran into trouble as I reused to add his name to any of my research papers as the senior author.

turcopolier

OMB

With regard to the colonel you disliked so much, how did this guy get reduced in rank? pl

turcopolier

fellow traveler

Who is "W?" pl

turcopolier

james

You suffer from a lack of actual knowledge. A great deal of extraneous business intrudes itself into the essential business of DoD even in a time of massive war commitments. pl

The Twisted Genius

mike,

I thought about how much of the "unnecessary training" is derived from the implementing instructions developed and pushed by installation commanders and others at this level of command. Much of the day today burden is the result of these commanders seeking to make their mark as doers. I think Mattis would be smart to stick to the big decisions along with changing that attitude from the top down rather than getting down to the installation-level policies. It'll take time. Maybe an energetic pruning of general officer billets could be one of the early projects.

Mattis will have his hands full with Congress. It's not just the social experiments he has to deal with. It's the unnecessary equipment purchases and unnecessary installations that contribute to the problem.

ex-PFC Chuck

"W" Is a frequently seen nick name for George W. Bush, so much so that it was used by his reelection campaign in 2004. I was aware that his father had been affiliated with the Carlisle private equity racket firm but not him. However I'm not surprised.
http://www.cafepress.com/mf/5184862/george-w-bush-04-oval_sticker?productId=13413523

BillWade

Trump tweets:

“After consultation with my Generals and military experts, please be advised that the United States Government will not accept or allow transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military,” the President tweeted. “Our military must be focused on decisive and overwhelming victory and cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail. Thank you.”

On our way back to normalcy, thank God.

mike

@TTG - "Maybe an energetic pruning of general officer billets could be one of the early projects."

A much better way to go instead of past RIF's that focused on junior officers and NCOs. But it should not be a once-in-a-lifetime project. My cherry trees do best with an annual pruning, and SWMBO deadheads her roses almost daily.

The Twisted Genius

BillWade,

Well how's that for timing. I went through jump school when women were ineligible for that training. I also remember when the Marines were considering banning married people in the junior ranks. I happen to agree with Trump here. Maybe 20 years from now it'll be different, but now is not the time.

turcopolier

BillWade & TTG

I heartily agree. It will be interesting to see what Mattis thins about out of the closet gays. pl

Huckleberry

Yes, it would appear that the curriculum will be lighter at least one unnecessary class: trans sensitivity training.

BillWade

Back in the closet and all will be well. Distractions harm readiness.

Thirdeye

The same types of issues affect just about every major institution, undermining mission focus. Academia is top-heavy with administrators and social engineers that result in ballooning costs while disrupting actual skills acquisition with rotten policies. Self-serving posing is rewarded in business. The list goes on....

Thirdeye

Pitchers allowed, no catchers?

But seriously, the issues with transgenders are much more severe from a mental health standpoint.

The Twisted Genius

BillWade,

Intolerance or at least the inability to engage in tolerant behavior is also a distraction. I'm not talking about celebrating differences, just tolerating differences. The USG should not accept or allow intolerant individuals to serve in any capacity in the US military.

turcopolier

TTG

Is it intolerant to not want trans-genders in the military? pl

The Twisted Genius

pl,

If the military has to make major accommodations purely to handle trans-genders or the trans-genders make such demands on the military, then being trans-gender is incompatible with serving in the military. I don't think that's a matter of tolerance. I don't want to see women in the combat arms or in any combat units even though I am sure there are women who could do it successfully. Someday, maybe. I don't see that as intolerance, just an acknowledgement that the disruption would far outweigh the advantages of such a policy. I don't know if this is still the case, but the Air Force required its pilots to have uncorrected 20/20 vision and no metal dental fillings. Being diabetic is usually a disqualifier for military service as are many other medical conditions, although some serve in a more or less "don't ask, don't tell" or "in the closet" status. I don't find that intolerant, either.

I'm interested to see what happens to those trans-gender service members already serving. If they make themselves non-deployable or disruptive, I think they ought to go. If not, grandfather them for as long as they serve satisfactorily.

BillWade

I can only think back to when I was in the Air Force, late 60s to late 80s. There were plenty of gays in the Air Force and I can only think of a few instances where they were discharged because they were gay and it usually involved alcohol and some pretty overt behavior, straights might also have been discharged for the same behaviors. Most were ok with that "system", is that tolerant enough?

The Twisted Genius

BillWade,

Sounds plenty tolerant to me. I don't know if you watch South Park, but they did a great one in "The Death Camp of Tolerance."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Death_Camp_of_Tolerance

Old Microbiologist

You have to be in a grade 3 years to retire at that grade otherwise you retire at the last grade held for a minimum of 3 years. He screwed up in Thailand before he had his 3 years in grade. I left off the part where when he came to be the Division Director he was still an LTC. I was at that time a senior scientist at he grade of GS-15 at step 10 (Department Director) so sort of outranked him in equivalency which was dicey for him. He had never had to manage civilians before. On the other hand I was on thin ice being a retired major so technically I could have been recalled to active duty and tried for insubordination as a major despite my civilian rank. It was loads of fun.

This is better than the good old days when you had temporary and permanent ranks.

But, the system now is horrible, especially with the senior rather emphasis. I had the misfortune to have a senior rater (earlier in my career) who my second wife, at that time a finance officer, had had this guy prosecuted for pay fraud back when he was a major. It was a "framable" OER and I beat it on appeal. He was another connected sycophant who had been a General's aide de camp and was more or less immune. I have a long string of characters like this in my history. The various medical corps seem to collect the trash of the military. I have dozens of stories like these.

Old Microbiologist

There is an under-reported phenomena about sexual assaults since the gay ban ended. Over 60 % are now man on man assaults. To add to the misery STD rates are at a level never seen before in the military and bizarrely syphillis is now back in a big way.

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