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, February 20, 2013

Good News / Bad News

In good recent submarine news, USS Florida (SSGN 728) was awarded a Navy Unit Commendation for firing 45% of the TLAMs launched during the Libya operation.

And in bad but not unexpected news, we read that if the sequester takes place as currently scheduled, the 2nd submarine scheduled to be ordered in 2014 is at risk, as is work on the new Moored Training Ship. On the other hand, they'll cancel of bunch of summer Middie training, so that will free up submarine crews from being annoyed by a bunch of midshipmen.

Also, we saw last week that both the CO and XO of USS Jacksonville (SSN 699) were DFC'd mid-deployment following their collision at PD last month. The dual relief says to me that maybe the CDO was stationed when the 'scope got bent. Luckily, a frigate CO got fired soon afterward, to break the streak of three consecutive CO firings from submarines.

52 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I heard the P-CO of the Seawolf was fired before he took command. Anyone know what happened? Most likely a good story.

2/20/2013 5:28 PM

 
Anonymous MentalJim said...

Let me see if I have this straight. The sequester will make a little less than a 10% cut to DoD budget for the year. That will take spending back to what it was in 2007 or so. Back then we were fighting two wars that are now all but over and the troops are home (so says the media). On top of that inflation is well under control and there is even concern of deflation (again, so says the media). Then how can we be any worse off than we were in 2007? Did we cancel deployments then? Were we less safe than we are now? This whole mess is a contrived bit of kabuki theater with the exception that it is not entertaining.

2/20/2013 8:02 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Right now the cuts are 10% overall, but 25% to Operations and Maintenance. This is because military pay, benefits, and retirement benefits pay are untouchable, so you can't cut personnel costs (they are furloughing civilians for 22 days, though). Procurement contracts are already paid for, in many cases for the next decade. That leaves Operations and Maintenance left to find your cuts.

I'm sure that if DoD really, really tried they can find a way to move the money around, but then we wouldn't have such a "fire for effect" tactic to bully Congress into passing some kind of legislation. But it does look like Congress is about to call our bluff.

2/20/2013 8:33 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Then how can we be any worse off than we were in 2007?" - MentalJim

We cannot be worse off, you are correct, and the answer to your question us is Barack O'drama, of which the public will tire in this term.

2/20/2013 8:33 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Also to add onto that, the Navy spent money in the first two quarters of FY2013 as if the sequester would never actually happen. Oops.

2/20/2013 8:34 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon @834:

Not true. We have been under a CRA (continuing resolution authority), since no budget was passed. This doles out money in small chunks at 2012 levels in small chunks and prohibits any new (non milcon or shipbuilding) acquisition starts. It also plays hell with existing contracts, and you get charged higher rates because you can't start a new contract for a longer period.

Definitely hasn't been a spending spree.

2/21/2013 4:19 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Read the fine details of the frigate firing news announcement, the CO's relief (permanent relief is the term used, what ever that means today) is none other than the officer who was the XO of the USS PORTER who couldn't figure out the basic of the COLREGS and not turn left and get T-boned by a supertanker with a fully operational radar and a dark but clear night. Reading the safety investigation, it sounds like the CO was certainly "the cause" but sounds like he was the cause because of poor training, who is the training officer again? She had been onboard for at least many months (ie wasn't onboard for two days, I know Obama is still blaming everything on Bush but she was on board long enough where she shouldn't have anything to blame on her predecessor). She was the XO of a ship that needed $1 million in temporary repairs alone (probably doesn't figure in port costs) and limped back form deployment. May not be enough to be fired, but should certainly be enough to make this your terminal rank.

2/21/2013 6:19 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Back then we were fighting two wars that are now all but over and the troops are home (so says the media). "

Funding for the wars was paid for by seperate OCO (overseas contingency operations) funding - it was not part of the DOD budget.

2/21/2013 6:19 AM

 
Anonymous submarines once... said...

MentalJim has it pretty much right. If the true needs of the warfighter were the number 1 priority then I'm sure the cuts would look much different. The bloated defense budget survived the post Cold War Clinton cuts. Interestingly, 1985 was the peak of the defesne buildup under Reagan. The DOD budget did not get back to that level of $$ until 2006 (constant $$).

2/21/2013 6:23 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

P-CO of seawolf got re-routed, not fired. Just normal detailing stuff.

I heard that 705 had a pretty sick depth excursion......

2/21/2013 6:41 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

6:41, any more details on when the depth excursion "may" have ocurred?

Sure that required restocking of diapers.

As to defense cuts, if any of you think we can't cut 10% off the military budget and not even skip a single beat you haven't served in the Navy.

The waste is horrific.

I read today that in Va, AK, and HI that ~20% of their economies are driven by military spending. So don't whine in one breath about reduced deficits and government spending with clawing for bloated military spending.

Our military spending vs GDP has been so far out of whack. Time to get realistic and put the check book into a locked drawer.

2/21/2013 10:30 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

@619, I don't know the details of that collision, but the RoR are very specific about situations to avoid turning left. Making a blanket statement to always avoid turning to port based on those specific cases called out in the RoR demonstrates the fundamental misunderstanding that the sub force has about the RoR. That and I have a feeling the surface Navy has the same problem as the sub force wrt over conservative standoff CPAs causing us to drive like the crazy granny on the road, which confuses the pros (it's sad that we can't call ourselves or the surface Navy the pros).

2/21/2013 3:25 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is really hard to explain without breaking security rules....705 was, I believe, doing some maneuvers for the guys in fancy gray poopie suits, and went a little deeper than they planned. I would like to hear the story on what exactly they did to cause them to go quite so far (overshot TD by triple-digits), but getting a copy of that NNIR will probably be tough.

Joel, if you think I said anything I shouldn't have, please feel free to delete this.

2/21/2013 3:59 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's simple. You take a SCP that rarely does high speed turns. Then you take an underway schedule that is time-sensitive. Because of 1 and 2, team doesn't stop when they have depth excursions the first few times and then somehow get surprised when they can't do better on the "big one."

2/21/2013 5:07 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

^^^^^^^^
How do you critique stoopidity? LOL.

2/21/2013 10:27 PM

 
Blogger KellyJ said...

^^^^^^^^^
The new CO holds the critique.

2/21/2013 10:49 PM

 
Blogger KellyJ said...

The Sequestration (at least on the DoD side) is being geared to provide the most pain and bad press as possible. Front page news of refueling overhauls delayed. A CSG deployment cancelled the night before they leave. Telling units overseas they have to be extended because their scheduled relief won't be trained. DoD civvies being furloughed 2 days every pay period (a 20% pay cut). Maintenance and training cut.
All designed to create the maximum negative press (which will be directed soley at 1 political Party that has already passed several legislative Bills to deal with the problem).
Of course the Brass and Secretaries wont do what they should do...cut the true non-defense pork that loads the Defense Budget: Millions for a childrens education progeram called "Starbase." Bio fuels that cost ten times as much as normal old school fuel. Tortoise habitata and Least Turn nesting sites on bases in California. Millions going to a company to develop Satelite technology in New Mexico. A $300 million transfer to the Department of Education for “impact aid” for schoolchildren of military personnel. $523 million for medical research - for cancer, autism, Lou Gehrig’s disease and other afflictions not related to war injuries.
The Defense Budget is stuffed with give-aways that have nothing to do with defense, but are a nice way for the Left (and individual congress-critters on both sides) to launder money to their pet projects while bypassing the agencies that should be paying for these items.
That is where the Defense cuts should be made. Kill a Congressmans earmarked project and watch how fast they pull their heads out to fix the problem.

2/21/2013 11:10 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

@3:25. Nice try at twisting what I said. Yes I very much understand the rules and it's not a blanket statement. I specifically said not to turn to port and get T-boned. As in two vessels meeting on nearly reciprocal course should avoid turning to port across their bow to avoid getting T-boned!

Believe me I fully understand when you can turn to port and when you can not. So making a blanket statement (to use your words, in fact I did not make a blanket statement) that the submarine force does not understand is clearly wrong.

2/22/2013 6:31 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

2/21/2013 11:10 PM,
Want a real example of waste?

My cousin works for Lockheed. He is simply a HS graduate. Through a friend he got a job in one of the middle eastern countries we invaded in a warehouse. He loads trucks and drives a forklift. He was not even close to being in harms way.

He was making ~130k/year being over there. He did that for about 7-8 years.

And how much do you think Lockheed got paid in order to have him over there.

And yet active duty E-2s are over there getting shot at and making 1/7 of the pay.

This problem is driven by the right. Sorry, but it's a fact. Congress could have fixed this long ago but the GOP's stated goal was to defeat the President and thus stonewalled at every turn. But keep voting straighline ticket and expecting things to change.

Try again.

2/22/2013 10:02 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The news keeps going on about how there are "deep cuts" on the way, and how "irresponsible" it is to take so much money out of the economy. The President had the gall to call it a "meat cleaver" approach.

Horseshit.

News flash: The sequester is cutting 1.5% of the total budget.

Yet somehow with 1.5% less money (I realize that a larger chunk of that is to the DOD), we suddenly have armaggedon where ships are welded to the pier and civilian DOD employees lose 20% of their pay.

No respectable, intelligent person should be using those adjectives to describe a 1.5% budget cut.

The real talk from news agencies should be "why can't the President and Congress pass a bill to responsibly re-alocate funds with a 1.5% budget cut that would allow units to continue to deploy and civilian DOD employees to keep their pay?" It easily can be done. I bet you could find the money in endless inefficient programs within the Federal Government.

The real reason is that the President doesn't want to. The Republicans are taking all the heat for this. I'm not saying they are innocent -- as the post above demonstrates, they also created a bloated budget with hand-outs to buddy corporations. But the President also knows what will get attention, and John Q. Public doesn't care if we cut 1.5% on the budget to research and develop the SSBN-X, a railgun on DDGs, or the next ADCAP. So the President won't submit a budget to re-allocate funds, and Congress won't force him too.

It's a political pissing contest and our Sailors are in the middle of it. Makes me sick that people can't see it, and even sicker that the media can't call a spade a spade.

2/22/2013 4:07 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's very obvious that the military is setting up the sequester to be taken up completely by things that can be easily reversed, in the assumption that the sequester will at some point be reversed.

It's easier to stop furloughing civilians and put a refuel back on the schedule than it is to say, change the contract for F-35's and pay the associated fees and then change it back again.

That said:
1) There is crazy waste in the DoD, look at the 70+% cost overruns of big procurement contracts.
2) This whole thing is the Republicans fault, you get the military you pay for. Medicare and Social Security are much more important than the DoD at the end of the day.
3) There are no bills still alive to divert the sequester (last Congress' bills die at the end of session).
4) Republicans are going to fold like cheap suits. In 2 months the sequester will just be wished away, watch.

2/22/2013 8:04 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I meant to say Medicare and Social security are more POPULAR than the DOD not more important.

2/23/2013 9:02 AM

 
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Anonymous Anonymous said...

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2/26/2013 9:42 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bummed that noone has responded about the SEAWOLF PCO... I've heard a little about how it's an interesting story, but nothing else.

2/28/2013 11:44 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"And in bad but not unexpected news, we read that if the sequester takes place..." -- You voted for him J-hole.

2/28/2013 2:47 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

And why no discussion of the current OPS Review?

2/28/2013 4:05 PM

 
Anonymous MentalJim said...

My payroll taxes going up by 2% haven't destroyed my personal budget. Of course I don't have a habit of always spending more than I take in like the government. Looks like the cuts are going to happen. Yawn.

3/01/2013 6:18 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

INSURV trials on CCC was very interesting recently...As another writer has already discussed.

Haven't seen much here except a few mentions.

Waiting to see the incident report on that one and analysis of why they continued with the test when they were woefully and inadequately prepared.

I guess it's a product of the currently useless CO and XO training program for risk management.

Thoughts?

3/01/2013 5:43 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Incident report for CCC is on the subpac sipernet website (search on intalink for NNIR).

The reason it is on the sipernet is because it is classified. Since it is classified people should probably STFU about it on the internet.

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3/04/2013 11:34 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

@ Anon 6:30

Thanks for the info - read the CCC NNIR and it was worse than I'd heard. Lucky we didn't lose a boat that day.

BTW, the NNIR is not classified - which may be a continuation of the larger issues at hand here....

3/05/2013 4:37 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Considering it lists how deep they went (to the foot) and what percentage great than test depth that was it should be classified!

I wonder what fucktard approved that as being unclassified.

3/05/2013 12:14 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

^^^ Who signed it? There's your answer!

3/05/2013 2:49 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, depth, speeds, angles, AND % of test depth. Saw it today. Dipshits. It was a fun read tho'!
I think retard rodeo would be the best term that comes to mind. Who was the senior officer onboard at the time??? Hmmm.......

3/05/2013 10:48 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

^^ The senior officer on board is there just for ride time and to feel important. Obviously not any value added - as we all know from years of experience, but we do it anyway.

Would be interesting to know though, other than the INSURV Senior Member who "Told me to do it"

3/06/2013 4:38 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Were there any post Command Officers and staff on JAX during their recent collision that resulted in the DFCs of the CO and XO?

And were they there to evaluate the ship for C5F / CTF54?

First trip into the gulf and the staff is there to "help".....

We really have to ask why we keep doing this "help" stuff and not hold the Fuc*s accountable for their interference.

It's hard enough being on the front lines and going to sea without useless second guessing and corrective actions Plan of Actions and Milestones required by clueless ISICs. Most COs are burdened with multiple POA&Ms, that are provide relatively no use.

Need a POA&M to track all those POA&Ms!

3/06/2013 5:52 PM

 
Blogger Ed Mahmoud said...

The sequester is a 2 week delay in the projected growth of the budget. Obama has made DoD the one part of government he will actually cut, but the cancelled deployments are for affect. I see the owner is a Democrat, I hope I'm not banned for being a surface type, or noting unlike all Republican president before, even though they didn't agree with the War Powers Act, passed over Gerald Ford's veto post-Watergate, Obama is the first President to ignore it.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with getting on board with GDP. Military and GOP politics are the biggest oxymoron. It's ironic that the preponderance of service members sway to the right denouncing large government while collecting a paycheck from the largest government budget/bureaucracy. I am thankful for the opportunity to serve but unlike many will not transfer to the DOD civil service/contractor soup kitchen when I retire. We need to be great builders and devise alternatives to compete with cheap labor instead of whining about it. I get it. We promote peace, freedom and democracy around the world, but our sense of entitlement needs to be checked at the door.

3/14/2013 9:48 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Agreed. The US govenment has built a military around a capability that's nice to have -- ability to strike anywhere on the globe within 24 hours -- vice one that's required -- defend the shores and sovereignty of the United States.

Realistically, few countries have the resources and logistics to wage a total war with the US anyway. Even Japan and Germany in WWII had no realistic chance of waging an invasion on US mainland, just as we had no realistic chance of waging an invasion on Japanese soil. We just happened to scare them enough with nuke bombs into submission, and we were only successful in Germany because they wasted all of their resources trying to get to Moscow.

So we have a massive military force capable of 24 hour global strike anywhere for what? So we can restrain our use of them and wage decade long wars in 3rd world countries, that's what.

3/14/2013 8:31 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

^^^"...vice one that's required..."

Why is it that careerist or too-long-in-the-military types use "vice" when they mean "versus?"

Maybe they grew up thinking that "vs." was short for "vise?" ;-)

In the spirit of "English as a First Language--Again--For Dummies," here's the Merriam-Webster definition of "vice":

1a : moral depravity or corruption : wickedness
b : a moral fault or failing
c : a habitual and usually trivial defect or shortcoming : foible [suffered from the vice of curiosity]
2: blemish, defect
3: a physical imperfection, deformity, or taint
4a often capitalized : a character representing one of the vices in an English morality play
b : buffoon, jester
5: an abnormal behavior pattern in a domestic animal detrimental to its health or usefulness
6: sexual immorality; especially : prostitution

So "learn-a da language", folks...you mean VERSUS not 'vice.' Do us all a favor and remind the next mil-non-std-language bonehead that uses this in a sentence that he needs to keep a dictionary near his place of work.

3/18/2013 1:00 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Jackass - next time try reading all the way to the bottom of the page:

Vice (preposition)

Definition of VICE:

in the place of (I will preside, vice the absent chairman); also:

rather than


This is from merriam-webster.com. One of the hints that "rather than" is an acceptable usage of "vice" would be in the term "Vice President" - but that would have required you to actually think, vice spout off in an ignorant manner.

Jackass.

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