Warm Southern Breeze

"… there is no such thing as nothing."

Posts Tagged ‘Navy’

Can Donald Trump Ever Stop Screwing Up?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, December 28, 2018

Yet another COLOSSAL blunder from POS45, the Idiot in Chief.

This time, his Twitterific highness compromised the identity of SEAL Team 5 members in Iraq by posting a video to his Twitter account of them, faces plainly visible, wearing night vision goggle equipment atop their helmets.

How much of an idiot does one need to be to do that?

While the POTUS has the authority as Commander in Chief to declassify anything, it is not always good or prudent to do so. And it is painfully crystal clear that his posting was made with reckless disregard for potential security concerns. In other words, NONE whatsoever.

He was being who he was, and that is the Caricature in Chief, the Reality Show President, ever-seeking attention to overcome his seep-seated insecurity.

And since Read the rest of this entry »

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Remember American Nurses: 100 years ago WW I’s first casualties – Edith Ayers & Helen Woods

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, May 21, 2017

Mrs. Edith Ayres, Illinois Training School Nurse of the Class of 1913. Mrs. Ayres was the first American female casualty of WWI, and was buried with military honors at her home in Attica, Ohio.

Among the first casualties of World War I were two Army Nurses – US Army Nurse Corps Edith Ayers, of Attica, OH, and USANC Helen Burnett Woods, of Evanston, IL who were attached to Base Hospital 12 aboard the USS Mongolia – a passenger vessel which was converted into an armored troop carrier and hospital for the Army March 1917 – en route to France, and died 20 May 1917. Also wounded was Miss Emma Matzen, of the Illinois Training School, Class of 1913.

Miss Helen Burnett Wood was a Nurse graduate of the Evanston Hospital Training School, and was one of the was the first two casualties of WW I.

At that time, military Nurses held no rank.

Woods was attached to the U.S. Army Base Hospital, No. 12, also known as the Northwestern University Base Hospital, because a majority of its personnel came out of the university. In May 1917, she received her official orders to join the Base Hospital staff on its way to New York where the staff would embark for Europe.

The two women were on the Mongolia’s deck observing various weapons firing and were struck by fragments of the 6-inch gun’s propellant caps which had ricocheted off a stanchion.

Their deaths were so shocking to the nation, especially to their respective communities, that following their accidental, and untimely deaths, a Senate hearing – “Casualties Aboard Steamship “Monogolia”” before the Committee on Naval Affairs – was conducted. {Local file, PDF: Casualties Aboard Steamship Mongolia Hearings}

Mrs. Edith Ayres was a graduate of Read the rest of this entry »

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LOGIC: If bin Laden is not dead, there was no @realDonaldTrump #GoldenShowerGate. Here’s why.

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, January 12, 2017

Most would agree that Osama bin Laden is dead, that he was killed by a TOP SECRET CIA-led joint U.S. Military operation code-named Operation Neptune Spear, which was executed by the U.S. Naval Special Warfare Development Group, aka DEVGRU, or commonly as SEAL Team Six.

DEVGRU and the Army’s 1st Special Forces Operational Detachment-Delta (1st SFOD-D), aka “Delta Force,” are the DOD’s elite counterterrorism task force units, both which operate under the Joint Special Operation Command (JSOC).

Also involved in Operation Neptune Spear was the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne) “Nightstalkers,” (SOAR(A)) from Ft. Campbell, KY, and the CIA’s Special Activities Division (SAD), the most secretive of all clandestine agencies, whose members – if compromised – are denied by the United States Government.

But it was the United States Naval Special Warfare Development Group’s DEVGRU that was Operation Neptune Spear’s fatal piercing point for Osama bin Laden.

The general public has not ever seen images of Osama bin Laden’s corpse. Nor are they likely ever to see them. At least not in this lifetime.

In addition to President of the United States Barack Obama, one of the less-than-fifty-people who ever saw them was Republican Senator James Inhofe, who described in part what he saw to CNN: “One of the shots went through the ear and out through an eye socket, or through the eye socket and out through the ear and exploded, that was the kind of ordinance it was. That caused the brains to be hanging out of the eye socket. Absolutely no question about it. A lot of people out there say: ‘I want to see the pictures,’ but I’ve already seen them. That was him. He’s gone. He’s history.”

President Obama, who ordered the mission, said in part to CBS News that, “Keep in mind that we are absolutely certain this was him. We’ve done DNA sampling and testing. And so there is no doubt that we killed Osama bin Laden. It is important for us to make sure that very graphic photos of somebody who was shot in the head are not floating around as an incitement to additional violence. As a propaganda tool.”

Following President Obama’s White House announcement May 2, 2011 that bin Laden had been killed, speculation quickly arose that the death was falsified, that it – like some imagine the Moon Landing – was somehow “faked.”

Lack of publicly available images and details on the TOP SECRET Operation Neptune Spear only fueled specious speculation which, like wildfire, spread throughout the tinfoil-hat-wearing conspiracy community.

It was nearly two years later, in February 2013, that Read the rest of this entry »

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What are taxes for? Who should pay them? Should you pay more, or less?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, July 31, 2015

Kroger Tools for Schools Drive sign

Kroger Tools for Schools Drive sign

It infuriates me to see signs & posters like these, because THAT is what taxes are for!

And, if there aren’t enough taxes collected from the wealthy (and obviously, there aren’t), then we see “drives” and other collection points like this.

Just this evening, in conversation with my neighbor, she shared with me about how her co-worker – a young, single mother – recently confided in her, and said that she didn’t earn enough money to make ends meet – to pay the rent, keep the lights turned on, and feed her family and that she regularly has to go to a local food pantry (which itself often runs out of food because the need is so great) to augment her meager ability to purchase food – and that she, herself, didn’t have supper because she chose to feed her children, instead.

My neighbor remarked, Read the rest of this entry »

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A Father’s Day Essay

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, June 15, 2014

This year, 2014, my Pop will begin his 82d year of life in good health.

I am blessed, fortunate, happy and to be envied to have him with me now. Some of my peers’ fathers have been long departed.

A friend once said to me that “we never truly become men until our father dies.” In that sense, I suppose I’m still a youth… even though my teen years have been long departed.

My Daddy - v42

My Dad – When he looked at this photo, he said with a smile, “Who’s that? I’m going to have to get a new mirror!” I love my Pop. He’s a swell fellow – a real gentleman – with quite a life’s story! Raised in poverty in rural West Alabama, he knows how to pick cotton by hand, remembers when electricity came to his family’s house, the electrician’s name who wired their house, and so many other hard-scrabble stories of a life unknown to many of us in this day & age.

My dad is a Southern man. Having grown up in abject poverty in rural West Alabama, he was not merely acquainted with “everything but the squeal,” but was intimately familiar with a very real daily struggle for existence, where food was precious, and life even more so.

On occasion, I still hear him recall with utter amazement how much food he saw wasted – literally thrown into the garbage at San Diego Naval Station – where he attended Basic Training before shipping off to serve in the Korean War aboard the U.S.S. Juneau – CLAA-119, also known as “The Galloping Ghost of the Korean coast.” To his then-18-year-old eyes it was a culture shock which he remembers to this day. In his first day there, he saw more food thrown away than he had ever seen in his still-tender life. The adage “waste not, want not” is practically embedded into his DNA.

For those unfamiliar with the term “everything but the squeal,” it refers to the use of every part of the hog for food, and material. Nothing would be wasted. The fat would be rendered into lard, some of the meat would be preserved by smoking, while some parts were made into sausage. It was also time in which neighbors would help one another in the preparation of the animal. (If you’re interested in seeing & reading about some of the various aspects of hog butchering, see here.) It was only many years later that electricity came to my dad’s house – and he remembers the electrician’s name, and date the house was wired.

I recall tales he shared with me of his youth of “hog killing time,” which refers to the first enduring snap of cold weather, which was the proper time to slaughter a hog because the preservation of it’s parts would be more readily facilitated. That is, spoilage would be significantly reduced, because it could be stored in cooler conditions. Their “refrigerator” was an ice box – literally. ‘What’s an ice box?,’ you may ask. An ice box is literally a box into which a 100 pound block of ice was placed to cool food items. Not many items, mind you, because the creek was still a location where food items which readily spoiled were placed. Milk, dairy, meat and select other foods were regularly stored in a special box made to keep critters out, and keep food cool by the running water.

Naturally, not having electricity also meant that the meals were prepared in a “wood cook stove,” literally an implement which had to be tended night and day by his mother to prepare the family meals. Temperature regulation was achieved by moderating the amount of wood, the type of wood (seasoned dry or unseasoned green), and the variety of wood (species, such as oak, hickory, pecan, birch, pine, etc.).

Suffice it to say, his was a hard scrabble life. And it’s certainly neither joke nor exaggeration to say that they were so poor, someone had to come from Washington to tell them there was a Great Depression going on!

Dad honored his father and mother. He was Read the rest of this entry »

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DoD says Climate Change is National Security Risk

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, September 7, 2012

Here’s an item from our “Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Climate Change file.

While there continues to be much frothing about the mouth from conservative and libertarian types about climate change, there remains no doubt of its existence.

Some – mostly Republican & Libertarians – continue to assert that climate change is as much a hoax as the Tooth Fairy, Easter Bunny or Great Pumpkin. However, to be certain, there is no doubt that change has occurred, and continues to occur. The reason(s) why, and causes of the same are subjects of valid scientific debate and research. But there is no disagreement that change has, and is occurring.

The United States Department of Defense, Read the rest of this entry »

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Authorities & others find K2 is not the Spice of life

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, January 31, 2012

“He stood there holding a sandwich in front of him with no clue as to what to do.

He opened it up, looked at it, touched it.

I took it, and folded it over, and then he took a bite out it.

But then we had to tell him, ‘you have to chew.'”

That’s the tragic story of a sailor whom came in with his wife after he had smoked K2 Spice, a synthetic substitute for marijuana.

It was related by Lt. Commander Donald Hurst, a fourth-year psychiatry resident at San Diego Naval Medical Center whom witnessed it.

Recently, the actress Demi Moore was admitted to a hospital suffering from convulsions after “She smoked something — it’s not marijuana, but it’s similar to incense, and she seems to be having convulsions of some sort,” according to a female then present whom spoke with a Los Angeles 9-1-1 operator.

Pentagon military officials are so alarmed by the appearance and use of those compounds and substances by their service members, that they have Read the rest of this entry »

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In Memory on Memorial Day

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, May 31, 2010

My Great-Grandfather Michael emigrated from Ireland to the United States, and enlisted in the Union Army in Corinth, MS, 1862, and served the United States of America in the First Alabama Cavalry as a farrier. For more history on Union soldiers from the South, and the 1st Alabama Cavalry United States Volunteers, specifically, please see: http://www.1stAlabamaCavalryUSV.com

Age: 38
Birthplace: Langford, Ireland
Rank at enlistment: Private
Rank at discharge: Corporal
Company Assignment: C

12/6/1862  Enlisted, Corinth, MS
12/22/1862  Mustered In, Corinth, MS
12/17/1863 Mustered Out, Memphis, TN

My Great Grandfather, my father – a Korean War veteran of the Navy …Continue…

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Veteran’s Day 2009

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, November 9, 2009

I’m proud to have served my nation in the uniform armed services, having done so voluntarily. I think every young American should do similarly. And, I believe our nation should provide significant benefit to those whom so choose.

Some years ago, I envisioned what I called a “234 Plan,” which would:

  1. Double pay grade for two years up to pay grade E-3 for initial enlistees;
  2. Require a minimum of Four Years of service;
  3. Pay for four years of higher education, up to and including Ph.D., with the ability to transfer benefits to first-degree relatives;

and perhaps most importantly,

4. Provide such income as federally Tax-Free, forever.

At current pay rates, that would be slightly under $76,000 for a period of two years at pay grade E-3 – not a bad nest egg. And then, there’s the 30 days paid vacation, head-to-toe health care, incentive/bonus pay for skills, BAH (basic allowance for housing), and a host of other remunerations and fiduciary potential – all of which are added to Basic Pay, thereby increasing take-home pay. Potentially, managing money wisely, a young enlistee could emerge from a four year commitment with very nearly $125,000 in pocket, VA health benefits, GI Bill benefits, and more.

The money could be used wisely, or squandered. But the principle would forever be federally tax-free – and I think it should be at the state level, as well. It’s well known that young enlistees have high levels of “disposable” income. But WISE fiscal management could yield significant benefits to them individually, and by extension, to our nation.

Part three of the plan I envisioned – higher education – was implemented when President Obama signed the Post 9/1 G.I. Bill, providing the most comprehensive expansion and provision of educational benefits our troops have received since F.D.R.’s presidency.

I recollect a report entitled “Young Virginians: Ready, Willing, and Unable to Serve,” having read and saved it September 2, this year. It was authored and advised by an impressive cadre of Generals, Admirals, field-grade officers, and senior executive NCOs, from all branches of the service, and “supported by the Pew Charitable Trusts, and Pre-K Now, campaign of the Pew center on the States.”

Interestingly, NPR has only recently reported on it.

The problems the report addresses are from a thorough examination of Virginia, though it’s findings can be extrapolated to the United States at large.

According to the report, the three greatest problems disqualifying American youth from service to our nation include:

1.) Criminality – felony and serious misdemeanor offense;

2.) Education – failure to graduate high school, and low achievement in reading & math, 30% unable to pass the Armed Forces Qualification Test; and

3.) Health – specifically obesity, although asthma, eyesight, hearing, mental health, ADHD and additional health problems factor in, thereby disqualifying over half of all young adults.

Additional disqualifiers include single custodial parenthood, and drug or alcohol abuse.

These are all social ills.

Mission: Readiness – Military Leaders for Kids is a bipartisan, nonprofit, national security organization of more than 80 retired generals and admirals,” whom “accept no funds from federal, state, or local governments,”  and “call on all policymakers to ensure America’s security and prosperity by supporting interventions proven to help America’s youth succeed academically, stay physically fit, and abide by the law. Pre-K Now collaborates with organizations and policy makers to lead a movement toward high-quality, voluntary pre-kindergarten for all 3- and 4-year-olds.”

In recent political history, social programs have been an “easy target” for many of the Republican stripe whom have seriously reduced or eliminated such programs’ funding, effectively or outright killing the very programs that could have done much to have prevented these anathemas.

Ironically, prison construction and maintenance is a capital expenditure. And of all the world’s nations, ours has more incarcerations per capita than any other, having exploded (doubling 2.5 times) since 1980 (though incarcerations remained relatively stable since 1920, according to the U.S. Department of Justice).

How’s that THAT for the so-called “Reagan Revolution?” It sounds more like a “Contract on America” rather than “with America,” to me.

Wonder why no more.

Governance is much more than infrastructure expenditures, and military readiness includes a strong social component.

Our Constitution calls it providing “for the common defense,” by promoting “the general welfare,” to “secure the blessings of liberty.”

Healthcare is an integral and unequivocal part of that equation… as we can now painfully, and plainly see.

I suppose it would be apropos and germane – though perhaps trite – to conclude with a line from advertising: “You can pay me now… or, pay me later.”

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