Friday, June 8, 2018

Every Confidence

The Navy has commissioned yet another of their endless and pointless studies.  This one involved simulator tests of Junior Officer basic seamanship.  The results were what one would expect.

“A three-month internal review conducted by senior U.S. surface fleet leaders found some or significant concerns with the ship handling skills of nearly 85 percent of its junior officers …” (1)

This shocked the Navy.

“Brown [Navy’s top surface warfare officer Vice Adm. Richard Brown], who leads Naval Surface Force Pacific, termed the results “sobering.” (1)

Really?  This was what you found “sobering”?  Two collisions and multiple groundings didn’t bother you but this was “sobering”?  Blithering idiot.

What kind of result did you expect after two collisions and multiple groundings?

All right, mocking aside, the Navy now has some actual data to look at which confirms reality (see how that works, Navy) and let’s the Navy put a number on the magnitude of their ineptitude.  Fine.  So, what are you going to do about it?  Reports have been issued, a few wrists have been slapped, and a seemingly endless list of recommendations have been issued – as they have been many times in the past whenever a shiphandling incident occurred (remember the Port Royal grounding?).  None of those accomplished anything so why will any of the current reports and recommendations accomplish anything?  They won’t.

As far as I can tell, the 7th Fleet is still sending unqualified ships and crews to sea.  Nothing substantive has changed.

Come on Adm. Brown, I’m asking you, man to man, why is this going to be any different?

Want to know why nothing will change?  Here’s why – after all the collisions, groundings, and horrific test findings, here’s what Adm. Brown had to say.

“I have every confidence in our current generation of Junior Officers.” (1)

Really?  Every confidence?  I wouldn’t trust these incompetents to sail a rubber ducky in the bathtub and reality attests to that assessment.

Now, I don’t believe the Junior Officers are mentally challenged.  They simply haven’t been given the training to succeed.  Until they receive that level of training, only an idiot would trust them as a group.  If Adm. Brown has every confidence, I guess that tells me what I need to know about the good Admiral.

By the way, Admiral, I have one more question for you.  If the Navy is so determined to improve and to identify problem areas, why didn’t you run the same simulator test on the senior officers and Captains?  I guess those results would be just a bit too embarrassing, huh? 


(1)Defense News website, “Troubling US Navy review finds widespread shortfalls in basic seamanship”, David B. Larter, 6-Jun-2018


  1. I read about ship or submarine commanders being replaced for seemingly stupid reasons (was there a carrier commander replaced for some minor transgression over a comment on the ship intercom?), in that environment why would they risk training juniors? Training always involves risk, I remember the only time I threw a live hand grenade - dodgy.
    The USN seems to have the officer corps it deserves.
    So, would half of the commanders be replaced early in the next war like the USN submarine commanders in WW2? There would not be enough time for that.
    I also read somewhere that a renowned USN admiral grounded his destroyer (1920s),he wouldn't get the chance to become a renowned admiral nowadays.

    1. Yes, when war comes we will have to replace most of our combat commanders.

    2. Comment on the intercom?
      "The Navy permanently removed Capt. Owen Honors as commander of the aircraft carrier USS Enterprise today for what an admiral called an "exceptional lack of judgment" in making controversial videos when he served as the carrier's executive officer four [more than that] years ago.
      But hes firing back

  2. Excellent closing comment! See if the leaders can do it!

    Too many times I worked for senior people that had no clue how to do the work that they expected junior personnel to do. Worse they just said get it done! And THAT passed for good and determined leadership.

    I am not sure I would trust the current crop to EVEN BE IN the bathtub because the leadership culture they have served under is sooo bad.

  3. "By the way, Admiral, I have one more question for you. If the Navy is so determined to improve and to identify problem areas, why didn’t you run the same simulator test on the senior officers and Captains? I guess those results would be just a bit too embarrassing, huh?"


  4. Shouldn't they just increase simulator training in the beginning of the careers of those officers ?

    1. They can't. It would cut into the training time for gender sensitivity, sexual assault awareness, transgender acceptance, diversity, and green energy issues. These are the priorities for the Navy.

    2. And manning these ships so that there is enough time for the people to get more simulator time or training would cut into all those cushy and important shore slots waiting and doing all the things those admirals want. Yes I am salty about it.

    3. "Yes I am salty about it."

      But you're not wrong!

  5. All I'm getting from this (and I am guessing everyone else also) is that the Navy has now blamed someone for the problem and is now making excuses for their own incompetence.

    The Navy has become rotten to the core when it comes to its officers. I really hate to say that. To many years of running the fleet like its a business and not enough war fighters and competent doers.

  6. I did not know the story of USS Port Royal grounding. I am not a member of the Navy, nor a professional sailor. I am just a yachtsman interested in all ships and I like to read this blog. The story is very interesting. It looks like these guys relied on devices instead of taking bearings and plotting fixes. I will tell this as an example of what will happen if you do so.

  7. To repeat my post from a few weeks ago:

    "Until the Surface Community adopts higher training standards, NATOPS, anonymous safety reports, etc. these accidents are going to continue. "

    Or to put this in proper perspective:

    Percentage of jr. aviators currently qualified for duty: 100%
    Percentage of jr. watch officers currently qualified for duty: 15%

    Old reserve OOD/Navigator/XO


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