Keeping the blogosphere posted on the goings on of the world of submarines since late 2004... and mocking and belittling general foolishness wherever it may be found. Idaho's first and foremost submarine blog. (If you don't like something on this blog, please E-mail me; don't call me at home.)

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Failing Well Enhances Character Development

Guest post from CDR Scott D. Waddle, USN (Ret.), originally posted on the TSSBP Facebook page, reposted here with his permission:

Life isn’t fair. There will always be someone who is smarter, stronger and better than you. Your best effort will sometimes fall short and never be good enough no matter how hard you try. It seems the only equalizer in life is death. Even in death the path some follow to get there doesn’t seem fair. So why even try if failure is certain? The resilience of the human spirit is what makes us unique and separates us from the rest of the creatures on earth. When faced with failure we basically have three choices: withdraw and quit, waffle and do nothing, or try and figure out what went wrong, learn from it and try again until we succeed. Learning to fail well provides an opportunity to push beyond barriers once thought to be impenetrable and a chance to develop ones character.
I envy toddlers (children ages one to four) and ankle biters (think pre K). When kids play and begin to socialize with their peers, they have an uncanny ability to embrace setbacks, cast them aside and try again with greater vigor and determination until they achieve success. They are fearless and know no boundaries or limits. The fear of failing does not register with them.
 Playing is a vital part of a child’s life and an opportunity for them to socialize experiment and try new things. As children mature and they become more self aware, the consequences of their failures and how they deal with setbacks shapes their behavior and character.
 When I graduated from the Naval Academy in 1981 I was unable follow in the footsteps of my dad, an Air Force pilot, because I didn’t have 20/20 uncorrected vision. I chose the submarine service instead and embarked on what would be an incredible twenty year journey. Getting to command was not easy. Competition was fierce and opportunity for failure was high. Success was primarily achieved by balancing risk versus the gain. If you were too cavalier or risk averse the chances of getting to command became more difficult.
 Early in my command of the GREENEVILLE, during one of my weekly meetings with my squadron commander, I learned some of my fellow commanding officers were experiencing high turnover and attrition. The same problem existed on my boat which I attributed to command climate. In my boat’s case it was a matter of stopping the verbal abuse and hostility that existed on board. As the Captain when I demonstrated that I cared for the professional development of my crew, their personal and family well being I won their confidence and trust. The hostility ceased and the crew worked as a team. In the end my crew would be the best recruiters, pulling talent from across the globe.
 Some of my crew members were disenchanted and simply hated their job. My challenge was to help them understand the importance of their contribution to the boat’s operations, the team and mission success. Often it wasn’t easy trying to convince an 18 year old, who was scrubbing out urinals and toilets, doing some other crewmember’s laundry or peeling potatoes how their efforts were contributing to protecting our nation from the bad guys. I worked hard at it and in the end was successful.
 Other captains were giving up on sailors and kicking them out of the Navy at an alarming rate. When I shared with them my success stories they responded, “Too much effort. It’s easier to give them the boot.” Disappointed with the response I asked my squadron commander and his boss Rear Admiral Al Konetzni the Commander Submarine Pacific to transfer the hard case sailors from other boats to my command. Over a two year period 29 careers were salvaged. Those that had suffered defeat and chronic failure blossomed and succeeded on the GREENEVILLE. My crew and I embraced these sailors and found the right fit for them onboard. We knew each person was of value but they needed encouragement and guidance to succeed. Once they learned how to fail well, success for them just took a little more effort on their part. While working with these sailors I would learn that for a sailor to respect their leaders they had to first respect themselves.
 Leadership success aside; in command, the rules were simple. Don’t run your ship aground. Don’t hit anything. Don’t kill anybody (unless it is the enemy) and keep the core covered (think reactor safety). I violated two of the rules on 9 February 2001 and on 1 October 2001 was invited to leave the Navy.
 At age 41 on February 9th 2001 while in command of the submarine USS GREENEVILLE (SSN 772), an improved LOS ANGELES Class Fast Attack Submarine operating off the coast of my home port Pearl Harbor, I experienced a life changing event. That Friday afternoon with civilian visitors on board I ordered an emergency surface maneuver that caused my submarine to collide with a Japanese fisheries training vessel the Ehime Maru killing nine civilians. The accident took the lives of four seventeen year old students, two instructors and three crew members.
 After two years in command I was comfortable and confident in my ability to lead my crew. We had achieved unprecedented success up until the day of our collision. After the accident, the two week long Court of Inquiry would document the details that contributed to the cause of the accident. I was found guilty of dereliction of duty and intentionally hazarding my vessel. The actions I took that day I thought at the time were prudent. I was wrong. That’s usually the case with hindsight being 20/20.
 The accident had a dramatic impact on my life, my crew and the family members who lost loved ones. My personal failure caused significant emotional and physical stress. Despite the strong desire to preserve my personal and professional reputation, by trying to place blame elsewhere, I chose to keep my integrity and character intact. I took responsibility for my actions and the actions of my crew.
 I ended up losing the job I loved the most because of arrogance and the belief that accidents happened to other ships and not to us. My crew was extremely talented. We backed each other up. I thought we were better than those that had bitten the big bullet. Unfortunately that arrogance exists today in commands across the military and in board rooms around the globe. The challenge is to recognize the flaw and ferret it out. Nothing in my training provided me with a formal procedure or instruction as to what to do if I “fell on my sword”. All I had to go by were leadership classes at the Academy. In the operational fleet there were incident and mishap reports as well as case studies that documented collisions, groundings, equipment damage, personnel injury and loss of life. In the fleet most of the resources were part of a continuing training program that required periodic review. Learning how to balance the risk was a skill acquired through personal failure and observing others fail. I learned early in my career that it was less painful to learn from someone else’s mistakes. One of my old captains used to say, “If the heat’s on you it ain’t on me. Remember Waddle to keep the spot light off you and on the other guy.”
 Had I not learned to “fail well” early in life the choices I made following the incident most likely would have been different. Thoughts of placing blame elsewhere and trying to dodge the bullet were instinctive but I pushed the thoughts aside. The reason I chose to take the moral high ground was simple. It was the right thing to do. In command accountability and responsibility is absolute. The same holds true in the corporate arena. It is sad that most leaders that experience failure of this magnitude do not fail well. They spend their efforts covering their rear end.
 Some of the role models I had growing up were my parents, teachers, coaches, clergy, bosses and scout masters. Each offered encouragement when I failed and sometimes provided a reality check when my goals were too lofty or unrealistic. As I matured success was measured in small incremental steps. The failures served to humble me and teach me humility as well as perseverance. Over time I would learn what my strengths and weaknesses were. Dealing with weakness is tough but a necessity. I learned to shore up areas that warranted work and supplement my weakness by recruiting those who were strong in areas where I was not and openly acknowledging my weakness. The process built trust and respect with those I worked with. Eleven years later I still reflect on what could have happened or would have happened if only the accident not occurred. Most of us have had our “There by the grace of GOD go I moments.” You might call them something else. In my post Navy career I am a public speaker, executive coach and consultant. The audiences I speak before and customers are leaders who have experienced success in the past but for the first time in their lives are facing failure. The challenge for most of them is they have not learned how to fail well. My job is to help people get back on track and move forward.
 I challenge you to look in the mirror and candidly determine if you fail well. If you do not fail well find a mentor and learn how to. If you do fail well help others learn the skill. Your character development will only suffer if you chose the easy path by waffling, doing nothing or giving up.
 Many successful leaders have learned to fail well. A few of them are Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, Walt Disney, Bill Gates, Sir James Dyson and Steve Jobs. Take a few minutes and search for Steve Jobs’ 2005 Stanford commencement speech. You won’t be disappointed. At some point, you will fail. Don’t give up. Fail well!


Anonymous News Reader said...

Bigger Navy news that this today Joel, "Fleet Master Chief (AW/NAC) Mike Stevens, currently the top sailor at Fleet Forces Command, will be the next Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy."

Navy Times.

6/27/2012 1:24 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is how Scott Waddle acted after the collision to boost himself and self-promote and somehow profit from tragedy that to me reveals a lot more about Waddle than his temporary inattention to duty and poor seamanship that caused the collision.

Still, a well written monologue by Mr. Waddle.

6/27/2012 1:30 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I thought it was determined that command climate was a contributing factor to the collision?

No mention of that here.

6/27/2012 4:24 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Edison also exhibited another important leadership trait: exploiting one's subordinates.

6/27/2012 5:18 PM

Blogger SJV said...

WTF is "Command Climate"? He just admitted that he was arrogant and didn't think the shit would happen to him. Sounds like to me in between the lines is "we cut a couple corners". Call that "Command Climate" and you've got your smoking gun. STFU.

6/27/2012 5:43 PM

Anonymous A former GreenEville Sailor said...

 I challenge you to look in the mirror...and admit how little you have done for the families of the 9 people killed. All as a result of your hubris and a command climate where no one was comfortable or willing to tell the CO 'no, let's get one more leg'. Was getting the VIP's back on time that important???

6/27/2012 5:47 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I should probably keep my "mouth" shut, but I can't take this crap. I observed Greeneville underway with Waddle and it was an arrogant boat with a "our shit doesn't stink attitude" which directly led to the collision (and two subsequent similar events in two years) due to the command climate set by Waddle and no one else. When I was in command some ten years later, I constantly used the Greeneville story on how not to think we were above failure and that bad things can't happen to us. We succeeded well because it was not about me, it was the crew. Finally, Waddle failed miserably because not only did his arrogance impact the entire fleet operations, he greatly embarrassed all of us with the way he drew attention to himself following the collision and wrote a book to try to further his well being in the aftermath of this tragedy. If you want to see sub CO's that failed well, check into the CO's of OK City, Philadelphia, San Fran, Hartford... why haven't we heard from them? Because they truly took responsibility, paid the price, and moved on to a new career where they are leaders. This makes for nice "marketing" for his attempt to sell to civilians, but mention the name Waddle to those of us who served in the boats in this era and you would find very few who would say he "failed well."

6/27/2012 5:54 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I knew this was going to be a train wreck.

6/27/2012 6:02 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

5:54 anon nailed it.

6/27/2012 6:07 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very telling how different the posts are between here and TSSBP's Facebook page.

What a difference a little anonymity makes.

Why don't you "men" man up and post those comments there?


6/27/2012 6:19 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Give me a break! To even post this sanctimonious crap by waddle is beneath this blog! Waddle violated many rules of basic submarining and only owned up to some guilt AFTER...I repeat AFTER...he was found at fault by the court.

Go back to the lecture circuit Twattle...

6/27/2012 6:26 PM

Blogger Unknown said...

The deaths of those japanese students should not be used a character development study.

This is an incredibly self-serving statement by an incredibly narcististic man.

6/27/2012 6:30 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you didn't know Waddle before the "Incident", all you would have to do is read his dumb ass book to know what kind of a douche bag that guy is. Ask him and he would tell you he was the number 1 CO ever, ask any of his superiors and they will tell you he was average to slightly above average. I am not sure what made him think we wanted to hear his ramble, but I would prefer he not speak unless spoken to.

6/27/2012 7:02 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Congratulations to all the new SCPOs out there. Well done and good luck.

6/27/2012 7:08 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks, anon :-)


6/27/2012 7:13 PM

Blogger SJV said... average CO is a d-bag? I think he was typical of the species. Not all good, not all bad. Worse CO's have made flag, better CO's have not. It's a fine line between arrogance and confidence.

6/27/2012 7:19 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Eleven years later and I still have nightmares that the lone student whose body was not recovered will rise from the depths and pull me under. I don't swim in deep water anymore. I guess failing well clears your conscience.

6/27/2012 7:38 PM

Anonymous About to be frocked... said...

Ditto the thanks to anon @ 7:08!

6/27/2012 7:54 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Most of you guys have no sack and are probably the same bunch of a** holes I left behind when I got out of the navy. Go back to your man caves and sulk you pathetic jerks.

6/27/2012 8:06 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow guys.... looks like you need to go to anger management class. Why all the deep hatred? I served with him for two years and he took care of our crew. Guess what after the accident he did all he could to meet with the families. He even flew to Japan to meet with them in private. So STFU.

I doubt, given the circumstances you could have done or would have done any better.

You guys are pathetic.

ETCM(SS) Go F Yourself

6/27/2012 8:12 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...


You must have been standing quartermaster...

6/27/2012 9:10 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree the article is well written. Why are you guys getting your panties in such a bunch over it? What he says is of value.

I was on the Key West at the time and had buddies on the Greeneville. The boat wasn't screwed up they were good. I didn't think they were arrogant either. He took more than a third of our crew on an east pac just to help out our skipper and get us sea time and training that no other boat would provide.

They ran a tight ship. The skipper saved the boat twice on that run. Once when one of our guys was on the helm during the mid watch and turned the wrong way. A second time with one of our JO's LT Matt Drag and the pilot in Pearl tried to run the boat's screw into the Cheyenne's screw while landing. I was the bridge phone talker.

Not sure where the hell you guys are getting your info from. I was there for two months of ops. It was a good crew.

Heck the XO was the one that f'd the boat over twice and caused the grounding in Saipan. It was the third CO that collided with the Ogden in the gulf. What a bunch of f ups.

I agree with some of the other posts. You guys need to chill and get a life.


6/27/2012 9:19 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...


He specifically said he fixed the command climate.

Read it again.

Are you always such a douche?

6/27/2012 9:21 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cdr Waddle is coping with a tragic mistake that all of us at some point in our career feared. What’s done is done, he is doing what anyone will do to get through the rest of his life with some sense of pride. His retrospective was honest and not selfserving as some of these posts suggest.

6/27/2012 11:45 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Guess what after the accident he did all he could to meet with the families. He even flew to Japan to meet with them in private.". And since then he has turned the biggest loss of life Fuck-up of the Sub Force into a money-making book tour and corporate speaking second career. I find that disgusting in the extreme. He 'failed well' alright. Take responsibility for it fine..but what he has done to commercialize the catastrophe sine is gauche. He writes some pretty words though. /golf clap. That boat will never pull into Japan again because of the politicall and public fallout that would result.

6/27/2012 11:47 PM

Anonymous Jimmy Mudd said...

Considering that every boat going on west-pac HAS to pull in to Japan that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
In fact, it’s probably a blessing in disguise. All of my west-pacs in the last 10 years seemed to turn into Japan-pacs…
Furthermore I could care less about some Japanese dying. My grandfather who was a POW hated them with a passion until the day he died. What a bunch of politically correct “steely eyed killers of the deep” we have become.

6/28/2012 5:53 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Shipmate, shipmate, tried and true, better F#$K him before he F#$Ks you!"

Mr. Waddle's previous CO's statement and the general philosophy of surviving for a career in the submarine force of today explain why we spend so much time covering our rear end. “I have met the enemy and they wear the same uniform as I.”

6/28/2012 7:43 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Of all the highly publicized submarine accidents in our history, the GREENVILLE collision with the EHIME MARU is the one in which blame the most inextricably linked to an overconfident and cavalier Commanding Officer. I find his "fail well" message to be self-serving and agree with many of the posts here that he continues to use this tragedy to his own personal advantage. He has collected well over half a million dollars in retirement pay (which should have been forfeited) and after disgracing the Navy he has the audacity to include his picture in uniform as his fb photo--please move on.

Comparing himself to Edison and Gates is another example of his narcissism. Those men actually achieved subsequent success by continuing to drive towards new achievements after learning something, not by giving road shows about their failures 20 years prior.

I would have some respect if he wasn't just leveraging his epic fail into personal gain. I'm sure in his mind he is trying to teach accountability from his mistakes, but until he learns how to be humble I will continue to see him as a pompous ass.

6/28/2012 9:26 AM

Anonymous STS@ said...

Nice to see the 20/20 hindsight in play here. I installed ARCI on that boat not long before the tragic collision. Met with CDR Waddle a few times in briefings and such and he seemed proud of his sonar division and excited to have this sort of upgrade to his boat. He didn't seem to carry himself in a way much different than any other CO I'd dealt with. Of course, I had Chris Earl as my first CO, it's nowhere but up from there.

6/28/2012 9:55 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...


"...Furthermore I could care less about some Japanese dying. My grandfather who was a POW hated them with a passion until the day he died."

I can remember not too long ago when alot of people used to say the same things about another type of brown people here in the U.S....

6/28/2012 10:55 AM

Blogger Scott Waddle said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

6/28/2012 11:45 AM

Blogger Scott Waddle said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

6/28/2012 11:46 AM

Blogger Scott Waddle said...

Thanks for the candid comments.

If you claimed ownership of the anonymous posts would your remarks change? If not, why hide behind the anonymous header?

6/28/2012 11:50 AM

Blogger phw said...

I posted earlier in this thread as "unknown" unintentionally. I have posted to this blog years ago.

6/28/2012 12:11 PM

Blogger phw said...

I might add, before you (and others) flame me...

Counciling executives and giving motivational speeches is all very nice, but what I really wish you did is follow the footsteps of those other leaders that you mention in your posts-- the scout leaders, ministers, coaches, and teachers. The thankless ones who simply dedicate their time to improving the lives of others. You don't get paid much, but sometimes you save the life of a kid who might otherwise not amount to anything at all.

Let those kids be the testiment to success after failure.

6/28/2012 12:23 PM

Anonymous Christopher O'Leary LT, USN 6400 said...

I won't make mine anonymous so here goes. Mr. Waddle, the problem I have and, I think most people on this thread have (while I don't speak for anyone here), is the abundance of hubris and complete lack of humility you display. This is apparently the same attitiude you had while in command. While your intentions may be honorable, the perception among many, including me, is that you have learned little from the tradgedy of which you were a part, and you have simply manipulated your circumstances for your own gain. You have put a perverted spin on turning lemons into lemonade that quite frankly doesn't smell very good. Aside from that, for a former submarine commanding officer, your complete lack of situational awareness is stunning. Did you think a bunch of submarine sailors would give you a pass on comments like this? Have you completely missed how far you have set us back as a community? If you can get your head through the door, try some humility on for a change.

6/28/2012 12:43 PM

Anonymous Tom Hagan, USN 1951 said...

Setback indeed…

Mr. Waddle, your arrogance set back the Submarine community years. Indeed it is still felt today. It’s a good thing you don’t have to deal with the ramifications of you actions as an active duty submariner. Recommend photoshopping the dolphins off of your chest in all pictures you display in uniform. As far as I’m concerned you bring dishonor to them.

6/28/2012 1:39 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

If it wasn't for Konetzni, I'd have had Waddle's ass! Only bad decision I think Konetzni made in all the times I worked for and with him.

Crawl back under your rock Scott...wish I could have trashed your career before you killed innocents and set the operations of the submarine force back eons!

6/28/2012 3:21 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Does his article almost sound like a step method apology attempt or, darker, a cry for help? Why after all these years would he show up on TSSBP?


6/28/2012 4:54 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Declining book sales and not enough bookings for speaking engagements but this is free press. He can't live off his pension now can he...

6/28/2012 5:37 PM

Anonymous Scott Waddle Also said...

Uh, you guys know that anyone can sign in as Scott Waddle right?

6/28/2012 5:42 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

But not with a blogger account.

6/28/2012 6:52 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Unless he didn't have one before. Then anyone could have registered it.

6/28/2012 8:10 PM

Blogger Bob Brandhuber said...

My son in law was the engineer on GREENEVILLE. I decided to go to sea the day of the event despite the direction of my boss. Cuz that's the way I roll.

The skipper was a shit hot guy with his act together.

In the end it was all my fault. Im the dumb ass.

6/28/2012 9:55 PM

Blogger Bob Brandhuber said...

I cant believe all of you homos are getting your panties in a bunch over this article. WTF?

Most of you have probably been passed over for promotion, like me, and are still pissed off about it.

Let it go. Not everybody can make flag, 06, screen for major command, make Senior Chief, Master Chief.

Not sure why you guys are so bent out of shape over this thing.

I liked the guy. Just like everyone loved me.

6/28/2012 10:01 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow. This got awkward...

6/29/2012 1:56 AM

Blogger SJV said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

6/29/2012 4:32 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Waddle - You'd be happy to know that you are still a submarine force poster CHILD!

Submarine Command Course (PCO school) uses the incident that you caused as an example of EXACTLY HOW NOT TO BE AN EFFECTIVE (OR EVEN SAFE) CO!

Pompus Ass - Check
Squashes input from team - check
wrong priorities - check
showing off - check

Pretty much the same things that the crew of the host SSN told you when you were riding as a PCO student - I remember one of my Dept Heads yelling clearly at you, "You're going to kill someone if you continue to act like that"

How prophetic that it came true - too bad PCO and SCC ops don't weed out this shitty behavior.

6/29/2012 4:38 AM

Blogger SJV said...

So I'm guessing his book tour didn't include a stop at Sub School?

6/29/2012 4:44 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bob is that really you? Who was the bull nuke on the Trident you were the Eng on, that I was an STS on?

6/29/2012 4:50 AM

Anonymous pauljose said...

Bob was the XO on my Usedtafish....doesn't sound like him....

6/29/2012 7:31 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The real Bob Brandhuber has never uttered the words "Cuz that's the way I roll."

Plus, Bob knows how to spell, unlike the dumbass that's pretending to be him.

6/29/2012 10:06 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Seems to me that when your foolish actions get people killed, you should go to jail, not become a motivational speaker. Why wasn't Scotty put in jail?

6/29/2012 10:23 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your February 2001 life changing event was even more dramatic for the victims and their families that your actions caused. I believe that after the collision you looked around for someone to place blame and finding no one but yourself asleep at the wheel had no other option than to fall on your sword.

Your arrogance is still in front of you and you don’t see it.

From your statements I believe that the primary emphasis you placed on your crews training and operations was to ensure you have a shiny plaything to drive vice a crew that knew and understood the issues.

You discuss 29 saved careers but fail to comment on the number you washed out. Give us the numbers along with specific scenarios so that we can compare and decide if you’re blowing smoke. Taking someone with a submarine assignment disorder that is not adjusting well in one division and sending them to a new boat to have them succeed is significantly different than having Johnny Bag of Doughnuts that continuously endangers people and turning them around. And guess what, some of your crew members are still disenchanted and will hate whatever their job is regardless of if they are still navy or have transitioned to a civilian life.

Your old captains saying, “If the heat’s on you it ain’t on me. Remember Waddle to keep the spot light off you and on the other guy.” is a key part of what is wrong with the navy and few people recognize this fact with even fewer willing to acknowledge.

I don’t see your comments as ‘moral high ground’ but as a self serving rant, much like this.

As far as placing this on Facebook, I'm an old retired bastard that refuses to use such things. I have grandkids that if they want to show me the fish they caught, they are able to hold it up and show me while it is still on the hook and line, the ball they caught will still be in their hand/s while I'm yelling their name etc...

Peaceout (An old retired bastard!)

6/29/2012 11:35 AM

Blogger Mike Mulligan said...

He is displaying bad very well. Don't we think more and it challenges way more that doing good. And here we sit in the era overwhelmeing doing goodism in our media and our lives, and never has our world been more troubled. We use altruism and doing good as the excuse for be selfish and being evil

I mean, god damn, a blatant display of being bad, doesn't that make us think and it so damn refreshing.

I think we can see all of us in his message.

6/29/2012 2:15 PM

Anonymous I am Spartacus said...

at anon 6/28/12 6:52 PM

"But not with a blogger account"

Note his On Blogger date of June 2012

6/29/2012 3:04 PM

Blogger Ret ANAV said...

"The real Bob Brandhuber has never uttered the words "Cuz that's the way I roll."

Plus, Bob knows how to spell, unlike the dumbass that's pretending to be him."

If it walks like a Duck and talks like a Duck......

6/29/2012 3:56 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't know guys, you might be being a little too hard on the guy. He was clearly the glue holding that crew together - look what happened in the year after he left. Without his awesome leadership they ran aground and had another collision.

6/29/2012 7:04 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Down goes Frazier! Down goes Frazier!!

6/29/2012 8:31 PM

Blogger dark cloud said...

Not even 80 seconds at PD before doing an EMBT blow. Steadies up on a sonar trace and then blames the FTOW. Jackass should be making gravel from boulders in KS, not littering the internet with self absorbed drivel.

6/30/2012 1:38 AM

Anonymous m.broughton said...

Amen Dark Cloud.

6/30/2012 7:04 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The rhetoric of ome of the more opinionated 'experts' commenting above have dully betrayed their lives as second-string decision makers or incompetents. Who do you wannabes think you are actually kidding?

Waddle got the CO mantle because he earned and deserved it, despite Dark Cloud's (a good handle for his own naval career?) cheerleading for a prison sentence at hard labor.

Waddle lost his command because even submariners of Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz's stature occasionally make mistakes and encounter particularly bad luck. Waddle still has more integrity than many JOs could muster on the best days after their last promotions.

Like RD, DC is relentlessly harsh in demeaning others and several notches too high on his opinion of himself. We should all be glad the relevant decision making of both is moot.

6/30/2012 1:32 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The japanese sailors were unlucky. Waddle's luck simply ran out.

For you apologists out there, please read up on article 119. The luckiest day of his life was when Fargo decided to offer him mast than send him to General Court-Martial.

6/30/2012 5:55 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...


Thanks for the lulz.

6/30/2012 6:27 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Waddles book was published by a christian publishing company that specializes in books from people who went thru an ordeal and how their faith got them thru it. I remember being annoyed form the book that the text did not mention the Ehime Maru by name, just called it a Japanese vessel. Good to see that he can use their name.

I have never been to Japan but from what I see on YouTube they seem to be a bunch of perverts and pedophiles. Don't think they deserve what happened to them.

Always wondered why he was not charged with manslaughter. Form what I heard (may have been the investigation) Waddle was a helicopter boss. Good to see he admits that his own arrogance caused the accident which I don't remember his book doing. His arrogance prevented his crew from getting better because rather than mentor them he jumped in to do their job. When it became important they did not necessarily have the skills to do what was needed.

The unfortunate thing is I see that all too often in the civilian world. It really amazes me that fatal accidents don't happen more often.

6/30/2012 8:49 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

BTW auto correct sometimes causes misspelling. Especially on an iDevice.

6/30/2012 8:51 PM

Anonymous 3383 said...

Due to my long experience online, I have earned and deserve the ability to detect sock puppets online.

Comparisons to Nimitz? Really? Even the 3 years' experienced Ensign Nimitz? Really.

6/30/2012 9:16 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow! Nimitz ran his ship aground. A quick internet fact check yields the following.

⁃ Commander: Chester Nimitz, ENS USN (22 years old).

⁃ Command: USS Decatur

⁃ Crew: Whomever he could scrounge in two days.

⁃ Aids to Navigation: A Phillipino river drawn on a scrap of newspaper.

⁃ Number of people killed: Somewhere on the order of 0.

He went to Court-Martial and got a Letter of Reprimand (but back then they were far more forgiving of the occasional boo-boo, so he got to stay in).

I wrack my brain for similarities, and I find that they both had balls, they both were in command, they both rammed their commands into objects, and they both got Letters of Reprimand. But Nimitz gets to 5 stars. Blimey! We must have been too harsh on poor Wads, so let's bring him back and promote him to two-stars. With his brilliance he'll be at five in a couple years.

7/01/2012 4:59 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Too harsh: "Jackass should be making gravel from boulders in KS, not littering the internet with self absorbed drivel." - sock puppet (= anon JO) Dark Cloud.

7/01/2012 11:23 AM

Blogger dark cloud said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

7/02/2012 3:22 AM

Blogger dark cloud said...

@Anon 11:23. I've had my CO tour. I didn't kill 9 people, I didn't run aground and I didn't hit another vessel. I had the chance to command, but even if I hadn't, well, you don't have to be a pro football player to know when a team sucks.

Many CO's have had trouble, very few have written books about how good they were...even in failure.

As for my being too tough, if your brother was on the Ehime Maru that day I'll bet you would not be as lenient.

7/02/2012 3:24 AM

Blogger Miami Dodge said...

thanks for posting...........
Miami Dodge

7/02/2012 6:11 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have waited awhile before posting my thoughts on this incident. Foolishly I had thought this confined to the dustbin of history, but some folks just do not know when to shut up and go away. As the saying goes, "don't go away mad, just go away".

Waddle is wrong. The important part is not failing "well" is failing "fast". An important distiction that apparently escapes his analysis. Failing well leads to spectacular failures while failing fast leads to quickly figuring out what did not work so you can avoid doing it in the future (and hopefully avoid failing WELL!).

Failing fast in this situation would have meant that someone somewhere along the chain of events would have realized that this was an accident waiting to happen and prevented the set of circumstances from ever happening. Unfoturnately the Navy avoids such analysis and commanding officers of this ilk are all too common with occasional spectacular examples of failing WELL.

When this tragic accident occurred I had to try to explain to non-submariners at work exactly how in the world a submarine could run into a vessel and sink it with loss of life. Initially I thought "there but for the grace of God go I..." but after reading the analysis of the accident I realized that this was highly preventable. Who could have prevented this? I will start with the CO and work my way down from him.

Sadly this approach appears to missing from the commercial gain Waddle has made from this accident. Profiting on the accident is goulish if you ask me.

Sean O'Connor

(did not feel like posting anonymously)

7/02/2012 6:39 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"I asked my squadron commander and his boss Rear Admiral Al Konetzni the Commander Submarine Pacific to transfer the hard case sailors from other boats to my command. Over a two year period 29 careers were salvaged. Those that had suffered defeat and chronic failure blossomed and succeeded on the GREENEVILLE. My crew and I embraced these sailors and found the right fit for them onboard." - CDR Scott D. Waddle, USN (Ret.) as quoted above in "read more"

First, what's FUNDAMENTALLY different about S.D.W.'s unconventional approach to rehabilitating 'hard cases' than Navy's opening of subs to a gender with 34% higher medical requirements than males? Before shooting condescending barbs from your PC-tatooed hips, reflect on issues, facts, application and a logical conclusion, or you well deserve the dismissiveness you are due.

Secondly, what should anyone who retires as a CDR consider himself a loser as some have suggested? His career may be over, but certainly not his life. We shall see what crowns his work in the end, and gladly compare it to what you tell us crowns your own.

Rex the humble

7/02/2012 12:56 PM

Anonymous Don Martin said...

I was in the command center at CPF when this came in. The space quickly filled with senior folks, and a duty watch officer and I were observing from the edge of the action, pitching in where we could. Before anything other than the voice report was known, I told the other DO "I could be wrong, but I think I can tell you pretty much what happened without knowing anything else."

I was on the Nat Greene when it grounded. The CO wasn't as hot as Scott Waddle, but was definitely up and coming. Ultimately what happened to us is that in our rush to get a bunch of important stuff done, we (and the CO in particular) forgot that submarining is not a sure thing - it is a risky thing we do, in a risky environment. Repetition (without problems) does not make navigating underwater safe. You remove layers of protection at your own peril (and that of everyone else on the boat or near it).

There are a bunch of contributors. Personality is certainly a factor. The less input you accept from others, the more critical it is you are always right, and the more spectacular the results on the (however rare) occasion you are wrong. No one is right all of the time . . .

I personally believe the biggest factor is the way the submarine community ethos had (and I am not convinced much has changed) evolved - what, as a community, is believed to be important. How does a superstar find himself involved in a critical mishap? I think a major factor is a matter of what the real risk factors are, how they can be (and are or are not) mitigated, and how these compare to what is perceived as important. How does safe navigation stack up compared to boundary valve leak checks, or DV schedules? To cut through all the BS language above, what currently makes someone a superstar, compared to what does it take to operate the boat safely and effectively?

In the aviation community, nuggets are told repeatedly to "aviate, navigate, communicate". If you forget or mis-prioritize the basics in that environment you reliably become a smoking hole. The basics of safe operation on a boat are just as important, but usually take enough longer to bite you that we (as a boat and as a community) can get into the habit of pretending they will take care of themselves.

In Scott Waddle's case, he did everything right that he was brought up to believe was important. Everything went horribly wrong, and he found himself on the other side of the table in a whole chain of proceedings from folks who were remarkably unsupportive. In effect, his whole professional world view was invalidated.

I watched (from the front of the sidelines) the whole situation play out - multiple careers dissolve, the confidence of an entire nation badly shaken in our own national ability to protect them. The bizarre theater of two very different cultures coping with a tragedy. It (combined with the Hainan P-3 affair, a story for another time but with related lessons) brought "apology" into our vocabulary as a nation in what I personally believe to be in a bad way. I've gone out of my way to forget the details - I was not in a position to do any good, from my perspective it was a painful train wreck I had to watch but had no responsibility for and did not have any reason to dwell on.


7/02/2012 1:21 PM

Anonymous Don Martin said...

Did Scott Waddle fail well? I won't comment on specifics but will say that none of the aftermath was pretty. This was one incident in which I do not recall a great deal of nobility from anyone (with the very notable exception of the many directly performing the search, rescue, and recovery, often at personal risk and sacrifice.) .

I agree in part with Scott O'Connor (7/02/2012 6:39 AM) - this was absolutely preventable. All the same, I would caution anyone who thinks that this means "there but for the grace of God go I . . . " is invalidated. Understand, in all its texture and color, that this happened to a boat and CO who thought (with considerable validation from their entire chain of command) that they were doing everything right. While doing the essential basics horribly wrong.

I could be entirely mistaken, but I suspect the odds of any JO making Admiral are minimal if, throughout their career, they speak up when they see this sort of situation developing. So far as I can tell, doing the right thing still is generally not career enhancing.

7/02/2012 1:23 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"...I suspect the odds of any JO making Admiral are minimal if, throughout their career, they speak up when they see this sort of situation developing. So far as I can tell, doing the right thing still is generally not career enhancing." don martin

A thoughtful and sensible summary, DM. Respecting your own admonition ("The basics of safe operation on a boat are just as important, but usually take enough longer to bite you that we ... can get into the habit of pretending they will take care of themselves.") the habit of complacency leads inevitably to diminished capacity to think in an accurate and comprehensive manner.

Your belief that the submarine community ethos has not changed much also presumes it has not deteriorated. As you say, it boils down to a matter real risk factors are, and how they are or are not mitigated compared to what is perceived as important.

But the boat community ethos is certainly changing, and too many agents of such changes have not been submariners. Time has an uncanny way of keeping score for minders of real risk factors.

Submariners have been a 'breed apart' with an enviable history of service to the nation that has been overwhelmingly stellar in acumen and sacrifice. It is still a stellar service and its leaders must not allow its volunteers to be 'normalized'.

Mr. T

7/02/2012 3:19 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said..., Rex....You are an idiot.

7/02/2012 6:00 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"We shall see what crowns his work in the end, and gladly compare it to what you tell us crowns your own."

Well, Rex, I have a happy marriage and two awesome kids. Everything else is just gravy.

7/02/2012 8:14 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Failing will help us become a better person. With this we'll be able to pinpoint our faults and fix it. To be able to be successful ones should experience failure to appreciate it well.

7/03/2012 7:03 AM

Anonymous bifold doors price said...

Failing will help us become a better person. With this we'll be able to pinpoint our faults and fix it. To be able to be successful ones should experience failure to appreciate it well.

7/03/2012 7:04 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm still confused....he made an incredibly stupid and preventable error that resulted in loss of life. His command climate clearly wasn't one where people speak up when you're about to make a mistake. He caused the incident. He caused the deaths.

His actions were the direct cause of multiple deaths. So....why isn't he in jail?

7/03/2012 8:31 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"So...why isn't he in jail?" - Anon genius at 8:31 AM

Because the resulting deaths were accidental like the 30,000 plus avoidable deaths on the nations highways annually each year. What a moron! No wonder you're anonymous like most of the others.

7/03/2012 9:36 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Because the resulting deaths were accidental like the 30,000 plus avoidable deaths on the nations highways annually each year."

And if you kill someone while driving drunk, or completely recklessly, guess where you end up?


He was driving, and commanding, recklessly.

7/03/2012 9:48 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"And if you kill someone while driving drunk, or completely recklessly, guess where you end up?" the anon moron

Well let's examine the question you pretend to know the answer to among all the readers.

Taking Connecticut as our example (not only home to Groton, but it was the state with the highest percentage of drunk driving related fatalities [51%] in 2009),
you DON'T end up in jail most of the time or very long:

In Connecticut, 1st and 2nd offenses are misdemeanors, 3rd and subsequent offenses are felonies. Second offenses within a set period (7 yrs?) generally carry a mandatory jail term of a few days with extended probation and license suspension. It becomes a felony with prison time (more than a year) if someone is seriously injured on there is repeated DWI arrests.

Are you alleging (defaming CDR Waddell) that he was repeatedly reckless? NO, you are not. Rather than citing any facts or meaningful opinions, you act as if you know something you don't know at all.

You, madame, would make a fine sea lawyer!

7/03/2012 10:16 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"It becomes a felony with prison time (more than a year) if someone is seriously injured"

Perhaps I'm mistaken, but weren't multiple people more than seriously injured in this case?

I am stating that he made a series of decisions that should never have been made. I am stating that because of his command climate, no one ever pointed out how stupid his decisions were. I am stating that the horrendously stupid decisions he made resulted in multiple deaths.

People who make poor decisions such as drunk driving that end in other people's deaths are incarcerated (while I'm no lawyer, I believe that most states call this involuntary manslaughter). A submarine commander who makes multiple incredibly poor decisions that result in multiple deaths should be thrown in jail.

Is your position that Waddle didn't make a series of incredibly poor decisions that led to multiple deaths?

Or that people who make incredibly poor decisions that lead to deaths shouldn't be thrown in jail?

7/03/2012 11:23 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Had USS Miami's fire happened at EB, the Navy would already be suing for damages, but a government shipyard like PNSY easily escapes financial liability for gross malfeasance. Lots to cover up?

7/03/2012 11:24 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

And as for the facts you desire....
This should probably suffice:

7/03/2012 11:26 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

He killed nine people through his reckless actions. Nine. Nine people with families.

He tarnished the Submarine Force because of his poor decision making abilities.

His recklessness brought shame to our country.

In the end, his actions directly resulted in the deaths of nine people. That is something that cannot be fixed or explained away as "failing well". The drunk driver who killed my fiancée didn't fail well. He didn't set out to kill anyone. He made a bad decision even with a ton of available information to him that what he was doing was WRONG.

That is what it comes down to. Waddle did not make a mistake. It was not an accident. He committed a grievous lapse in judgment that killed nine people. He did wrong. He knew the right way and he willfully chose not to do it.

You killed nine people Waddle. You collect a paycheck from the American people for "honorably" serving your country. Do us all a favor, take your check, give it to a charity and fade from existence.

7/03/2012 11:35 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"He didn't set out to kill anyone. He made a bad decision even with a ton of available information to him that what he was doing was WRONG."

Anon 11:35 AM

You just unwittingly described CDR Waddle, too.

Bob H

7/03/2012 1:27 PM

Anonymous MJ said...

Ok, so he didn't mean to kill anyone. That is the exact reason why he should have been charged with involuntary manslaughter.

His training for command was adequate. You do not get to the CO-level and not know the value of watch team backup, or that ship safety comes first, or the basics of a safety sweep at PD prior to an emergency blow. Nine Japanese individuals were killed that day because of the complete lack of adherence to the basic standards; we were lucky not to have lost ~130American sailors.

7/03/2012 2:08 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Ok, so he didn't mean to kill anyone. That is the exact reason why he should have been charged with involuntary manslaughter." - mj

History is not on your side; point to one (1) example of any navy CO ever convicted of manslaughter for accidental deaths!!!!

Guess what, mouthy stooge, you cannot.

7/03/2012 6:36 PM

Blogger SJV said...

Is failure to follow established procedures willful violation or simply an error of omission?

7/03/2012 6:53 PM

Anonymous Thanks Scott!!! said...

While his post is self-serving self-absorbed pompous drivel, we should thank him for the things he did do for the submarine force:

1. Gave us "I have a good feel for the contact picture" as a snarky under-your-breath (and occasionally far too loud) retort to some poor decision or demonstration of ass-hattery

2. teaming up With 9/11, kept me free of DV cruises for a half a decade...Scott Waddle and Al Qaeda, a tag-team protecting me and my brothers from chapped ass-kissing lips.

3. Filled every fried shrimp lunch day with dread

4. Served as a text-book example of how the OOD and CO relationship should not work...not every CO has remembered the lesson...I hope we as a force don't have to re-learn it in my lifetime...I promise I won't

7/03/2012 7:11 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Richard Ashby, Capt USMC Charged, but acquitted in GCM

Donal Billig, CDR MC, convicted

Waddlle's case seems most similar to Ashby's. Should have been tried

7/03/2012 7:40 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Billig's conviction was overturned and he was restored to the rank of commander and received all of his forfeited pay.

These cases illustrate just how hard it is to convict a person of involuntary manslaughter while acting in the line of duty.

7/04/2012 4:43 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The poster "anonymous at 6/27/12 at 5:54" has said it all, but here are my comments which generally support most everyone who posted thus far:

I did not buy his book, but a fellow submariner loaned it to me to read. I feel bad for him, but also believe the very title of "Failing Well" is a direct reflection of this man's character; rather pompous. I would not write a book after killing people, and title anything in it "Failing Well".
Other COs have killed people, but have not profited from it like this guy has.

7/04/2012 9:10 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

We're probably lucky we didn't lose the good ship and crew that day.

7/04/2012 10:58 AM

Anonymous Fast Nav said...

Sometimes we miss the message for want of a good messenger.

I don't begrudge CDR Waddle his thoughts, and there's definitely something to be learned from here.

But I think the reason that it falls, not on deaf ears, but on ears full of anger, is that it was un-solicited.

I'm not saying he doesn't have anything worth saying, but nobody asked him. The reason everyone thinks this is so self serving, IMHO, is that no one asked him to post it. Therefore, it comes across as arrogant.

Does he think that the people on TSSBP Facebook DON'T know who he is or what happened? That would be incredibly naive... So what was the true point of posting it if not to draw attention to himself and his new career?

7/04/2012 5:23 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't know Waddle, never met him, and I read his book. Maybe he was/is a pompous ass, but that's not what I took from his book or the post. Maybe he fooled me (most people don't).

7/04/2012 7:22 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Guess the comic strip artist Jeff Bacon reads TSSBP. See his latest cartoon? Timely topic.

7/05/2012 10:48 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Looks like the Submarine Forse has "Failed Well". Navy probe concludes that there is no truth to exam-cheating claims.

7/05/2012 10:52 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon at 10:52 AM probably answered your question, with a similar example, Fast Nav, undoubtedly it generates publicity for book sales, of course.

7/05/2012 11:45 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I served on the GREENEVILLE for five years. Two years before CDR Waddle arrived and one year after the collision with the Ehime Maru.
I was a second class nuke MM and selected for Chief before I left the boat after the 2002 WESTPAC.
The years preceding his arrival were difficult with our CO Bob Guy. He clearly thought of no one but himself. The JOs and Dept Heads (especially our Nav and Weps) were treated like crap. The XO LCDR Jim Hertlein was the glue that kept us together that is until CDR Guy finally left and Waddle arrived.
Under Waddle’s leadership attrition enlisted and JO pretty much ended. Our inspection grades were above average to Excellent. We did a lot of good things and had a lot of success in our operations.
I was an escort that day for the VIPs and was in the Control Room before and after the collision. No one saw anything that day that would have indicated we were about to collide with a surface ship the Ehime Maru. The SUBPAC Chief of Staff was on the CONN next to our skipper. CDR Waddle told everyone what were doing and about to do. I just wish our FTOW would have said something when we were at PD minutes before the collision.
No one picked up that there were three surface contacts in the control room. Im not sure how the ball got dropped but it did and nine people died.
All accidents with 20/20 hindsight are preventable. This one included. No excuses. We didn’t do our job good enough. Our captain never had a problem if we challenged anyone on our crew if we thought something was going wrong. We backed each other up.
Not sure what happened that day. It was a blur and the aftermath even worse.
CDR Bogden got fired along with the Nav and XO. CDR Hankins should have gotten canned too. He didn’t listen to us just as CDR Guy didn’t listen to us.
Waddle isn’t the screw up many of you claim he is. What a disappointment to know you shallow minded fools were submariners once. …or at least say you were.
If you read the facebook site Waddle’s article was written by request for the Air Force Academy Center for Leadership. He has presented twice at their NCLS symposiums.
I have great respect for Waddle and little for those of you who I doubt would have been half the man he is or was.
MMCS(SS) George

7/05/2012 3:50 PM

Anonymous Ret QMSS/ANAV said...

The unfortunate thing here is that all of the comments here are being farmed for Waddle's next speaking engagement/book writing. I have to give him props for being cunning and devious and probably making more money now then he did while he was a O-5.

The sinking will always be remembered as a terrible tragety that should have/would have/could have never happend if Waddle would have actually used what he was taught to do instead of relying on the "big ocean" theory.

7/05/2012 5:47 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

MMCS George, you DUMBASS! Waddle is exactly the screwup people say he is. Have you ever seen a guy trying to impress a girl by talking all knowledgeable about something but you knew he was full of crap and had no clue what he was talking about? Same thing with ole Waddle. Sure could talk a good game, but when it came down to it, couldn't perform as trained. Unfortunately the Navy let someone of his caliber make it to command. LCDR Morrison

7/05/2012 6:23 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Submarine Force has had more than its share of screamers. Screamers typically get little to no backup from their crew because nobody wants to be at the tip of the flame. Many screamers eventually fail because they get into a situation where they need backup, but they've conditioned their crew not to give it to them, and so they don't get much backup, if any.

CDR Waddle had a much different approach, but with similar effect. According to the MMCS's statement, the crew liked his approach a lot. But he had conditioned the crew so that they thought he was almost always right, and so he didn't get sufficient backup either.

According to the MMCS's statement, he was in the Control Room during the collision. So were a lot of other people, way too many people (picture the sardine can that is Maneuvering during ORSE drill sets). The CO was briefing the evolution, but much of that was a show for the VIPs. The CO rushed the evolution and the "small submarine, big ocean theory" failed him. Had it not, CDR Waddle had an excellent chance to make flag.

Recognize that the "small submarine, big ocean theory" allows submariners to become complacent. So they sometimes get away with poor periscope technique, rushing to periscope depth to conduct evolutions, failure to follow proper navigation procedures, etc. But every once in awhile, that theory fails with disastrous results. This was only one example, albeit one with tragic consequences.

7/05/2012 6:56 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Of the four COs discussed in the MMCS's statement, I know two of them personally. I find it interesting that the two identified as not listening to the crew would both be characterized as extremely competent nukes. So I could see how those two COs could be perceived as "not listening" to members of the Engineering Department.

Not doubting the veracity of the MMCS's feelings, but it would be interesting to get the perspective of some coners from the Greeneville on that particular issue.

7/05/2012 7:06 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

CDR Waddle was handpicked to replace CDR Guy. CDR Bogdan was handpicked to place CDR Waddle. CDR Hankins was handpicked to replace CDR Bogdan. A collision, a grounding, and another collision. Multiple firings of senior personnel over an exceptionally short time period. At some point, the bleeding on the Greeneville had to stop.

Eventually, CDR Hankins and LCDR Pyle (XO) stopped the bleeding, apparently after the MMCS transferred. CDR Hankins's subsequent Admiral Stockdale Award and LCDR Pyle's subsequent John Paul Jones Award tend to indicate that the MMCS doesn't have the whole story.

7/05/2012 7:17 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

He was an MM2 during CDR Waddle's tenure as CO. The average MM2 doesn't deal a whole lot with the CO from a watchstanding perspective. There is no open mic in ERLL, the CO isn't 10 steps from the ER, and an MM2 isn't going to observe the CO 'mentoring' the EOOW in maneuvering.

Observing the man conduct award ceremonies and monitor nuke training doesn't make you an expert on his command climate, nor does it give you any real insight to how he treats his subordinates in stressful situations.

7/05/2012 8:16 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

And an MM2 in Control as a VIP escort wouldn't know a good Evaluation of the contact picture before an EMBT blow from a hole in the wall.

7/05/2012 9:29 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm still shaking my head that the IG can't find any evidence of cheating. Anybody who has served in the last ten years knows it is be ause they do not WANT to find any evidence. There's cheating on easily 50% of boats. I'd bet well over 80% blaze at least some portion of their training plans, or "massage" the numbers. I did it, my crew members did it. Nearly every other JO I served with in any capacity before or after did it.

In a sense, I regret it now, because it is against my personal values, but the system is set up (on most boats) that you have to cheat to pass some combination of qual or continuing training exams.

7/06/2012 1:08 AM

Blogger Mike Mulligan said...

Well, every one knows he and the Navy was roller coastering and thrill riding the boat in front of influential people for the new Bush administration, so they could advocate for more funding for new submarines and navy monies...

The emergency blow and joy riding was trying to influence the big military contractors, congress and the president...

It sounds like Waddle couldn't say no!

7/06/2012 11:21 AM

Blogger Mike Mulligan said...

Right, they were on a day tripping ride on a billion dollar submarine for tourist...they couldn't get far enough out in the ocean in a few hours to where it was inhabitable and safe to play these kinds of games.

They didn't have a Navy independent eye and surface ship out giving the all clear in a heavily congested area...

This was a grave organizational fault too...

It is like the Air France just can't put a operating crew into every Tom, Dick and Marry increasing complexity situation. There is a limit to the complexity to what a good crew can take. It is the job of seasoned crew outsiders to protect the vessel and crew. A broken/defective device or inappropriate emergency blow in congested waters you protect the crew by limiting the complexity around a operation before the crew is dropped into a stew of complexity they can't understand.

Right, we are brother and sisters of the sea...we are family...we protect and love each other as sea going family members.

7/06/2012 12:27 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

LCDR Morrison?!

Right, when Hell freezes over. You are a juvenile impostor with no naval experience at all and would not be eligible to ride boats, my pathetic little pretender.

7/06/2012 4:58 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think the above anon is trying to tell you in an offhanded way that it is still a federal crime to impersonate a commissioned officer.

Just maybe it might be a good time for all of you little impersonators to take notice of federal law.

7/06/2012 6:32 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's not against federal law to say you're a military officer on this message board you fucking moron. STFU.

7/06/2012 9:10 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is if you are active duty...

7/07/2012 12:13 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Waddle is a twit.

FADM Nimitz

7/07/2012 12:44 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"It's not against federal law to say you're a military officer on this message board you fucking moron. STFU." - little anon impersonator

Want to bet?

7/07/2012 3:40 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Want to bet?" - anonymous dickless sea lawyer.


7/07/2012 6:32 PM

Blogger SJV said...

And...what if you're a commissioned officer impersonating a CO underway on a DV cruise?

I think more than anything else, this illustrates that even though the CO is responsible for all that happens onboard, he is not able to control it all directly. He must establish habits and skills in his subordinates that enable them to take independent and appropriate action in operational situations. I believe your comments are presumptive in that they assume that this failure was from ignoring procedures due to your arrogance, when the more relevant cause is that you didn't build a crew that would stand up and say stop when they got in over their heads. And it would be lots easier to believe that you were sincerely interested in preventing similar failures if you lived off of your pension and donated proceeds from your consulting and speaking gigs to the Ehime Prefecture.

7/07/2012 8:59 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

anon @ 6:32

You need to provide some sort of evidence other than your idiotic ranting that he's actually an imposter.

7/07/2012 10:05 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"You need to provide some sort of evidence other than your idiotic ranting that he's actually an imposter." anon @ 10:05 PM

Really? You need to ask NCIS, but a female submariner-impersonator like you, does not even know what NCIS is, and would not be mature enough to name and quote an authoritative source.

Shame on you kids; if you can't grow a pair, cutie, at least grow up!

7/08/2012 6:58 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Attention idiot:

I've been wearing my dolphins for five years and counting. More importantly, you don't need to talk to a lawyer or a cop to know that criminal prosecution requires actual evidence, not your blind assertions of what you think you know. If you have evidence that Morrison is lying about his rank, by all means provide it. Otherwise you should stay anonymous since you may be putting yourself in a rather actionable position. Hint: look up "libel."

7/09/2012 5:18 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Non at 5:18

You may be wearing dolphins, bud, but did you ever qualify to wear them? Libel CANNOT apply to criticism of an anonymous comment because it is not actionable.

Statements by person impersonating commissioned officers can be actionable, however, depending upon what they say. And if believe your anonymnity can be maintained you have a surprise in store when you step over the line, junior. Get it?

7/09/2012 7:51 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

What is that, a threat? Don't be ridiculous. Good luck finding someone to take action on that crap....trudging through the internet to find out who is committing whatever crime you think they're a joke man, a joke.

7/09/2012 11:21 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Good luck finding someone to take action on that crap...trudging through the internet to find out who is committing whatever crime..." - juvenile anonymous imposter

Just watch what you say as a supposed commissioned officer, champ!
You need to keep up with related news if you believe you cannot be identified. (nothing personal, here)

7/09/2012 12:58 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maybe you two lovebirds should go get a room or something LOL.

7/09/2012 3:21 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Libel CANNOT apply to criticism of an anonymous comment because it is not actionable."

If "LCDR Morrison" in fact used his real name he's not anonymous, you twit. If that's the case you have also falsely accused him in writing of a federal crime and of being a liar. Either of those by themselves would be sufficient to complete the tort of libel. The former is defamation per se - no proof of damages required. All that would be necessary is to connect you to the IP address that made your comment.

This is now the third time I have asked you to provide solid evidence of your claim. You have no incentive not to provide it, as it would prove your point and make me look foolish. That you have not done so is telling. Take some friendly advice from a non-lawyer and stop digging.

@3:21 There seem to be at least 3, maybe 4 of us now in the conversation, as this is my first comment since this morning.

7/09/2012 3:43 PM

Blogger SJV said...

Why should he provide proof to make you look foolish when you both are doing such great work on your own? Looking foolish, that is. Lighten up, Frannie!

7/09/2012 3:57 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Grounding in Saipan was caused by someone using the wrong chart. USS Ogden was responsible for that one. I was a Sonar man on the stack at the time. I was there so let's not pass blame. Moving ahead has proven easy.

7/09/2012 5:45 PM

Blogger David said...

Stand onboard USS GREENEVILLE SSN 772 outside the CO stateroom and look at the plaque, shaped like the State of Tennessee and read the brass plaques with previous CO names. There are 4 Names, Waddle thru Hankins within a year. I relieved as NAVIGATOR in 2006 and tell you that ship was still decimated by its accidents. It was treated with KID GLOVES by its SQDN and by SUBPAC and lead by the hand through everything.
I do not know Scott Waddle, but worked for Capt. Hankins as he was my SQDN CO and SUBPAC COS during the last 2 duty stations I served prior to my retirement. He too believed he was God's Gift to the Submarine Force, bolstered by the fact he was found to have not been at fault and not relieved for his collision. How could you relieve a 4th CO within a year and ever expect a submarine command to survive. Take that for what its worth.
I am not supporting nor am I criticisizing Scott Waddle for his post Navy career and the fact that people seek him out as a motivational speaker. What sickens me to no end is the fact that we submariners (I earned Silver Enlisted Dolphins in Sept 1990 and Gold Officer Dolphins in Dec 2000) will not stand up for our statements. Man up (guess I have to use a more gender neutral term from now on) and sign your name. Are you afraid to post your name, you can't be persecuted for your opinion. Use the backbone you grew to earn your dolphins and post your name if you have something to say.

7/11/2012 2:43 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I assure you Dave, that if I express my opinions properly I can indeed be prosecuted for them.

7/11/2012 4:19 PM

Blogger miami said...

This is an amazingly self-serving declaration by an amazingly narcististic man.
Miam Dodge

10/14/2012 11:35 PM


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