Message in a Bottle S.O.S.
There is no doubt that Donald Trump has bottled the American response to the Coronavirus but for the captain of an aircraft carrier, using the C-word seems to be a dismissible offence.
Under attack, Commander Brett Crozier was dismissed after a number of sailors got infected by Covid-19 and tested positive onboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt.
The reason we are told that this man was dismissed was not that he raised the alarm about Coronavirus but because of the way he raised the alarm which included a letter, later leaked to the press.
I am not sure how the Captain communicated this message but unlike his Commander-in-chief, I doubt the Captain tweeted the message and I don’t think he said it in a podcast or radio interview.
The captain would have communicated his position and the danger of the situation to a number of people within the chain of command as he probably knew that he couldn’t afford to wait for them to take the situation seriously and rung the alarm bell, knowing full well, that he could be dismissed for his actions.
DON’T SHOOT THE MESSENGER
I doubt Capt Crozier is afraid of the “Common cold” and he probably has a good understanding of what it means to take casualties and I am sure his crew appreciates the actions that he took.
I believe 155 sailors tested positive for Covid-19 but Crozier will be accused of spreading panic.
I am reminded of the case of the USS John S McCain where a similar situation happened with chaotic communication. There were warnings missed and ignored and lives were lost when ships collided.
In had been highlighted to top brass that there was a problem with the training of new steering systems that needed to be addressed. These concerns weren’t acted upon and those who highlighted the problem were probably sidelined.
Propublica* ran a fantastic article about the ineptitude of delays and problems which lead to the death of a number of sailors onboard the McCain and sister ship USS Fitzgerald, and that happened under the Obama administration after years of personnel shortages due to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan where sailors and staff were needed elsewhere.
One of the basic issues with the shortfall of sailors was the lack of lookouts on the bridge.
More serious of course was the lack of experienced people in charge to train younger staff.
A MAN WITHOUT PURPOSE IS LIKE A SHIP WITHOUT A RUDDER
America is rudderless right now under President Trump which was evident to me from his first year in office when he failed to appoint ambassadors and senior officials to key defense positions.
The tv president has often stated that he prefers “acting” positions over permanent ones but I wonder how many of Trump’s “Best” people could actually get past security vetting.
NO TIME WASTERS PLEASE: Seriously, there was a woman whose résumé included a photoshopped Time magazine cover of herself.
She got the job and Trump is known for putting his children and their spouses in charge of diplomatic missions and peace envoys despite them being denied White House security clearance.
The Navy must be in disarray with SS Donal Trump steaming off course and no steady hand at the helm after the incredible firing of Secretary of the Navy Richard Spencer.
The Secretary of Defense lost confidence in the Navy Secretary after he dismissed Chief Petty Officer Eddy Gallagher who was accused of war crimes but was liked by Donald Trump for some reason.
Commander-and-Chief Petty Officer
Trump sides with Nazis as some very good people and fought against Republican Senator and presidential candidate John McCain.
McCain was a prisoner of war during the Vietnam War and knew that “Loose lips sink ships” and stayed airtight as both his father and grandfather were Navy captains and I think both John S McCain Sr and Jr were also admirals.
Senator John S McCain III, later had his name added to the USS John S McCain’s register.
Three generations of sailors and servicemen were honoured with the ship named after them but because of Donald J Trump’s petty hated for his fellow Republican, Captain Bone-spurs seems to have torpedoed all hope of forgiving “Heroes who get captured.”
Clear and Present Danger
When Obama’s 2008 rival died in 2018 he didn’t want the president present and when Trump was informed that 17 sailors had died onboard the USS John S McCain when it was involved in a collision, Trump brushed off the deaths by saying, “That’s too bad.”
Inspiring words from the leader of the free world as the world battles a pandemic that could kill millions of people if we fail to take decisive leadership and this cartoon clearly depicts that respect is going down the toilet fast.
Up a creek without a paddle, the British Prime Minister tries to reverse his "Herd Immunity" approach while Trump wants to open the economy by Easter Sunday despite never actually shutting down the whole country.
Maybe Mike Pence is hoping that people will come back from the dead on Easter Sunday while the rest of the world feels like they are in some kind of zombie apocalypse film and are more worried about their own Last Supper than any kind of resurrection.
Vice admiral Mike Pence has been put in charge of this pandemic despite his failure to act in Indiana when he was governor causing #Pencedemic to go viral faster than Coronavirus.
In fact, Mike Pence is blamed for escalating the spread of HIV cases in Indiana but I am sure for the sailors spelling S.O.S. on the deck of the US Theodore Roosevelt, who have seen their captain removed for his “Bad judgment” they will be delighted when Trump replaces their Coronavirus-concerned captain with Jared Kushner where the chain of command goes straight to the admiralty and daddy-in-law-in-charge.
The SS America is not looking in great shape at the moment as it drifts ever closer to the rocks.
Yes the SS America launched in 1940 was a real ship despite sounding like a racist piece of ship and I am guessing the captain-in-chief won’t go down with his shi* and will probably be busy washing his hands on Easter Sunday like the biblical governor of Judaea, Pontius Pilate.
Certainly America has never been hit harder by pilots since 9/11 and December 7th 1941.
I hope I got the date right for “A day that will forever live in Infamy” but I know nobody remembers the famous slogan, “Remember the Maine” so who cares for accuracy when we are dismissing captains for trying to save their sailors from a battle where he was already starting to take heavy casualties from the enemy while on battle stations.
BOTTLE IT UP
If you have an important message to deliver to the Commander-in-chief, don't risk your career by delivering bad news, bottle it up and write a memo outlining what needed to be done. Maybe someday someone will find it washed ashore and you can finally say, "Didn't you get the memo?"
DON'T TURN BACK: America's first black president Morgan Freeman got the memo, didn't you?
IMAGES: SS America taken from Wikipedia. Memo.gif taken from Batman Begins. John McCain/ Fitzgerald image from Propublica and unknown Up Creek picture.
OH MAN: Jack Ohman's Sacramento Bee cartoon.