Friday, December 31, 2010

Fireworks, Yes! Red flares, NO!

Red flares have not made submarine news since 2007.
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We sincerely hope the safety trend continues! Loss of communications, followed by sighting of a red flare, may be a sub distress indicator.

The photo has been inverted from submariners' normal perspective, but also from a skimmer perspective. Here's the only clue anyone interested should need. Gledilegt Nýtt Ár!
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Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Dedicated to those who must soon qualify on Submarines

Were you ever around when one of your shipmates had to be reminded by a subject matter expert (hopefully never in an emergency situation) that since the shipmate was qualified he must already know the answer to his own question? While not funny, it is certainly inspirational. In lieu of Questions of the Week, here are 3 Answers of the Week. Draw your own conclusions about these questions, if you think you are qualified.
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1. What exactly is the plural of penis? I would say penises, but it seems too simple and obvious. Is it penis, like deer, or maybe peni, like fungi? Sissy, Emerald Isle, NC.
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ANSWER 1. (by The Straight Dope): Penis is a third declension noun, not second declension. These nouns often end in -is in the singular and -es in the plural. The English style -ises is sometimes preferred. Hence, we have penises (half of us do, anyway), and mantises and pelvises, but only more rarely do you see penes, mantes, and pelves, though they are not incorrect. In many cases, only the Latin form is acceptable: We have testes (some more than others) and crises and psychoses, but never testises, crisises, or pyschosises.
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2-(a) A Harvard Law School graduate admitted Wednesday to setting a fire at a temporary repository for Sept. 11 victims' remains, though he said he had been so drunk he barely recalled his actions. "I cannot explain why I acted the way I did, but I take responsibility for my actions. I am sorry," Brian Schroeder said, his voice cracking slightly, as he pleaded guilty to arson, cemetery desecration and all the other charges against him in the Halloween 2009 fire.
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ANSWER 2-(a): (by AP) - Luck
Charles Wolf, whose wife, Katherine, died at the World Trade Center, didn't feel Schroeder deserved jail. "Why ruin someone's life? He made a mistake," Wolf said.
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2-(b) Man Hit By SUV: "Frogger" In Real Life Goes Wrong
The 23-year-old man was taken to a hospital after the accident occurred around 9 p.m. on Monday. The driver will not be charged with any crimes. Clemson Police Chief Jimmy Dixon said that the 23-year-old man and his friends were waiting to cross at the intersection of Highways 123/76 and 133 about 9 p.m. Dixon said the man and his friends were talking about the video game, the object of which is to get a frog across a busy highway without being hit, when the man yelled "Go!" He said the man then darted into the highway, dodging oncoming traffic. Dixon said the man was hit by a oncoming SUV.The man was listed in stable condition as of Tuesday morning at Anderson Memorial Hospital, Dixon said.
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The man's identity and university affiliation were not immediately released.

ANSWER 2-(b): (7 Years in Hollywood) Luck, again.
There's an old saying, "I'd rather be lucky than smart."
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3. Alvin Greene, the unemployed Army veteran who suggested during his failed Democrat bid for the U.S. Senate that making action figures of himself would help create jobs, is running for office again. Greene had earlier been arrested on a felony obscenity charge accusing him of showing pornography to a student in a USC campus computer lab.
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ANSWER How does Greene do it?: (by Calvin Coolidge, 30th president of the US) PERSISTENCE "Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts [ref. 2-(a) and (b)]. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan 'press on' has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race."
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Greene picked up more than 350,000 votes (28 percent of the statewide tally) in his Senate bid, when he was defeated by popular incumbent Jim DeMint in November. Greene has now paid the filing fee to run in a special election for the House seat vacated by the death of a Democrat Representative.
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Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Credit Where Credit is Due Part 2 0f 2 (Obama)

President Obama
M.E. Assessment March 11, 2008 - The Real Straight Talker: Obama
What we said then.... Why do so many connect with Obama, obviouly the least experienced?He believes what he says, we can tell. He carefully explains his rationale and criticisms in plain speech that resonates with a public he seems eager to unite. Even if he must later adjust to reality, he is principled, intelligent and, like Reagan, able to communicate well.
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Example: Obama Delivers Bold Speech About War on Terror In a strikingly bold speech about terrorism Wednesday, Democratic presidential candidate Illinois Sen. Barack Obama called not only for a withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq, but a redeployment of troops into Afghanistan and even Pakistan — with or without the permission of Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf.
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Are U.S. troops deployed in Afghanistan? Regardless, has Obama picked up the pace of drone attacks against Pakistani Qaeda and Taliban positions?
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Answer: Since Obama's first year as President there have been more deadly drone attacks in Pakistan than there had been during all of the previous 4 years together. Moreover, the minimum enemy confirmed kills have risen by over 100 each year since. Also, see C.I.A. Steps Up Drone Attacks on Taliban in Pakistan (New York Times).
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Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Monday, December 27, 2010

Credit Where Credit is Due Part 1 0f 2 (the real Dr. McCoy)

When it comes to applied science fiction, there can be little doubt that the USS Jimmy Carter (SSN-23) is perhaps the latest if not most impressive embodiment of scifi gadgets to reality.
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In Star Trek Dr. Leonard McCoy, aptly portrayed by DeForest Kelley, often undertook futuristic diagnoses and therapies with medicines and equipment real medical practitioners still wish they had.
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Consider efforts to eliminate the parasitic Guinea worm in southern Sudan, for instance. The fight against guinea worm has been fought by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter for over twenty years. His Carter Center has almost won.
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In the 1950s, 3-foot-long guinea worms ravaged almost 50 million people, forcing victims through months of pain until the worm exited through swollen blisters on their legs. The parasite made tending cows or harvesting crops impossible for the afflicted. By 1986, the number dropped to 3.5 million. Last year only 3,190 cases were reported.
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Southern Sudan Guinea Worm Eradication Program (SSGWEP) Director Makoy Samuel Yibi, working in partnership with the Carter Center, reports 85% of the world's 3,190 remaining cases are in Southern Sudan, as of 2009.

Like the TV character, Makoy wants to work himself out of his job. In the photo (at left) Makoy assists in the painful removal of a Guinea worm exiting a child's leg and educates villagers on ways to prevent Guinea worm disease. The one thing the high-tech submarine (SSN-23) and Makoy's work have in common is ex-President Jimmy Carter.
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Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Sunday, December 26, 2010

Hang Up the Ice Skates Here

Fiction can rarely match truth for inspiring awe. Two Christmas customs may even convince readers like yourself.
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Yes, we have corroborated our linked sources. Secondly, you will see that no ice skates are involved with either custom.
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Skate Custom #1 - Caracas, Venezuela -
In Venezuela, it is traditional for people to attend early morning church services for the nine days leading up to Christmas Eve. But in Caracas, they like to add a little fun to their worship and rather than drive or walk to church, they strap on roller skates. Roller skating to church is such a popular tradition that many of the streets are closed to cars until 8a.m. so that skaters have the right-of-way.

Skate Custom #2 -Iceland -
...[on] the last day before Christmas, known as Thorláksmessa (“The Mass of St. Thorlákur,” Iceland’s patron saint)...celebrated by eating putrefied skate and buying the last Christmas presents.... The tradition of eating putrefied skate originates in the West Fjords, but is now common in all parts of the country. The fish delicacy is usually served boiled with potatoes, turnips and hamsatólg, melted sheep fat. People who want to avoid bringing the stench of skate to their homes—it smells strongly of ammonia—order the fish at restaurants instead. Serving skate on December 23 is becoming increasingly popular at restaurants in Iceland.

Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Friday, December 24, 2010

"Though they serve beyond sight of all, they remain on very influential minds" - Juan Caruso Davenport


Dedicated to every one of our U.S. submariners at sea during the Twelve Days of Christmas.
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Passage John 3:12 - If I have told you earthly things, and ye believe not, how shall ye believe, if I tell you of heavenly things?
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Enjoy the humor.... The Twelve Days of Christmas - Frank Kelly - With Lyrics
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Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Thursday, December 23, 2010

CAUTIONS - 5 Minarets, Stone Mountain, and the New START


In 1998, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Turkey's future Prime Minister, had been tried and convicted for his Islamist sympathies of inciting "religious hatred". During a public address in Siirt province December 12, 1997 as Istanbul's Mayor, Erdoğan had recited from a certain poem:
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The mosques are our barracks, the domes are our helmets, the minarets are our swords, and the faithful are our army” [color emphasis mine].
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Fast forward 9 years after 9-11 to a movie, Five Minarets in New York. The current IMDB rating for the film drama is 6.5/10 stars. Look for a one star rating by this reviewer dated 28 November 2010, with this title Thought I was getting an action movie, turned out to be poorly executed propaganda! Pay to watch at your own risk (unless your goal is to support such propaganda).
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Trailer was the best part? Note to self - Skip this flick.
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Another caution comes from an excellent Strategy Page article, A Frustrating Shortage. It is a succinct, but interesting review of recent Islamist evolution; you will be glad you read the entire page.
The main reason for turning their attention to the West was the inability to make much progress against the rulers of Moslem states. .... now simply call for all their followers, especially those in the West, to just do whatever they could to kill Westerners, preferably in a manner that will make the network news.

And the populace near Atlanta may wish to review precautions at this one in particular.
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“The treaty prohibits the conversion of an existing ballistic missile system into a missile defense system,” said Gerald E. Miller, Vice Admiral, U.S. Navy (Ret), “We might want to do that with a Trident or an ICBM sometime in the future, particularly if the Chinese alleged threat materializes.”
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Submarines are always silent and strange.





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Wednesday, December 22, 2010

News You Probably Missed and Now Probably Wished You Had Not

All of the following news was from December 5, 2005.
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We will start with the submarines news...
H/T The Sub Report: "The divorce rate among submariners is huge - about 80 per cent."Imagine 42 men in a densely packed space for months, without privacy and no opportunity for escape. Impose rigid chain of command discipline. Then, unexpectedly introduce six women to the equation. Under pressure ....
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Still drink water; how has the quality of your water been...?
The top 10 states, listed in order of the most contaminants in their drinking water, are: California, Wisconsin, Arizona, Florida, North Carolina, Texas, New York, Nevada, Pennsylvania and Illinois, according to a survey by the Environmental Working Group released today [12-20-2005]. The EWG found 141 unregulated chemicals and an additional 119 for which the Environmental Protection Agency has set health-based limits. Most common among the chemicals found were disinfection byproducts, nitrates, chloroform, barium, arsenic and copper.
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Certainly, you had know about Iran's contingency plan.....?
Jane's Defence Weekly reported that Iran and Syria signed a strategic accord meant to protect either country from international pressure regarding their weapons programs. The magazine, citing diplomatic sources, said Syria agreed to store Iranian materials and weapons should Teheran come under United Nations sanctions. Iran pledged to supply military aid to Syria. Jane's cited technology for weapons of mass destruction as well as conventional arms, ammunition and training of Syrian military.
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How organized has the immigration war with Mexico been....?
Mexico Retaliates for Border Wall Plan. Angered by a U.S. proposal to extend a wall along the border to keep out migrants, Mexico has struck back with radio ads urging Mexican workers to denounce rights violations in the United States. Mexico has stepped up its series of radio spots aimed at migrants returning home for the holidays."Had a labor accident in the United State? You have rights ... Call," reads the ad, sponsored by Mexico's Foreign Relations Department, which has helped migrants bring compensation suits in the US. [expired link removed].
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Finally, (H/T Lone Ranger) Think about the suicide bombers and U.S. Terrorists; what do such radical Islamists usually have in common....?
SOME Muslims Know What's Going On "We are a nation that doesn't work. How can we develop if we don't work? When we do work, we don't do it professionally."
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Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Monday, December 20, 2010

Facts of Life


Very unlike the population at large, submariners have an unusual bias for action. To a man, qualified submariners who get promoted are in no small measure control freaks.

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Extrapolations of anthropogenic, CO2 caused climate change based upon recent measurements (only since 1895, which is LESS THAN 2% of the time since the current Holocene began) and even less since reliable, worldwide temperature and CO2-level measurements began, are guesses by pseudo scientists with an affinity for lucrative government grants.

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Suppose these alarmist took only data from today's most reliable direct measurement of temperatures and atmospheric CO2 levels instead of ice-core and tree-ring estimates. Would results be any different? That is, if only direct readings based upon the most reliable sequential measurement techniques of the past 15 years were used as baseline measurements, could these scientists predict the next 5 year's climate conditions reliably? Apparently not.

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Let's bring this home in terms everyone understands without political bias. Do you have any smoke alarm's installed in your residence? How do you determine how often to test the proper functioning of your 120 VAC smoke alarms? Does the manufacturer rely on the life expectancy of an internal power capacitor/battery, or suggest you test your units monthly?

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If you have battery-powered smoke alarms, is the answer any different? Of course not -- lives are at stake.

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M.E. has kept records of 9v battery life for every in-home smoke detector for 15 years. We just established a new record: a standard DURACELL 9v battery (shelf life expiry MAR 2009) installed 11-23-2005 lasted until today (12-20-2010). The alarm had been tested periodically for proper operation and initiated its low-power warning this afternoon. What can we extrapolate from this? We must extrapolate nothing.

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Does the performance of the record battery justify changing alarm testing frequency? Of course not, no fools here.

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Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Saturday, December 18, 2010

Food for Thought

Since its 2005 inception the following quotation has appeared in the header of Lawyer Kickers pro bono:
Well-connected local people probably don't get prosecuted as much. That's just endemic in government, including lawyers and judges. People don't like to prosecute their friends. - Professor John Corkery of the James Madison Law School in Chicago

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Readers may find this outcome interesting, if not credulity-stretching.

Are lawyers ever above the law?

Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Thursday, December 16, 2010

Suddendly, Sub Medevacs Have Been Making the News

UPDATE: Fri, Dec 17, 2010 around 9 AM
One reader e-mailed this interesting behind-the-scenes “what if…”:
Right now our Independent Duty Corpsmen are trained to do everything up to taking out an appendix if they absolutely had to. What if a woman on a submarine had a health problem that required immediate attention like an ectopic pregnancy? Right now the wardroom table is our make-shift surgical table. I heard they are going to create a set of stirrups to attach to the end of the wardroom table for emergent female examinations and medical procedures. Then there’s the interesting dynamic of the male E-6 corpsman doing pelvic exams on the female O-3.

Until recently it had been quite rare for the news media to report on submarine sailors requiring medical evacuations (MEDEVACs), unless an unusual incident (e.g. coillision or fire) causes multiple injuries, or significant damage. In those cases, or if there has been a fatality, the mainstream soon picks up the story, regardless.

For the Atlantic fleet alone, submarine MEDEVAC rates (per 1000 man-months underway) for the years 1993 - 1996, were 1.9, 2.0, 2.3, and 2.0, respectively. Of those alone, had you been aware through the general media of even 50%? Not likely for most of us.

Fast forward to 2009 and 2010, however. Not only do we read about sub MEDEVACs, we can expect release of related video to follow. The latter does not occur without sub fleet authorization.

Why? The current emphasis on sub MEDEVACs is part of a program to desensitize both the public and submariners to what is coming in 2012 --- women submariners. Women require MEDEVAC 1.3 times more often than men (20% - 25% of which are due to gynecological problems).

Why? Because there are The Medical Implications of Women On Submarines pdf link . What exactly are the medical implications?

- Women use healthcare at a rate 1.5 to 2.5 times higher than men. Manpower losses due to health disqualifying conditions will likely increase for submarines with female crewmembers, including anemia, gall bladder disease, urinary tract infections, and a higher rate of orthopedic injury.

- Women, who lose 50% of their bone mass over a lifetime (compared with 35% for men) are at higher risk for osteoporosis. In a submarine, CO2 levels are ten times higher than normal and can lead to osteoporosis, in addition to decreased vitamin D levels from the absence of sunlight and a relative lack of physical activity. - Hmmm! Tobacco smoking is the largest determinant of CO levels in the blood.

There is more, of course, in the 44 page document.

Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Getting to the bottom of it ...

Havens in Pakistan loom as biggest hurdle in Afghanistan
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"Pakistani sanctuaries are crucial: If you can't solve that problem, you can't win," said a senior military official who is participating in some of the review discussions and discussed the issue on the condition of anonymity. source
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"Equally deserving of blame, U.S. diplomat responsible for Kandahar, Bill Harris contends, are American diplomats and reconstruction officials in Kabul, "who have spent billions of dollars but generated precious little capacity." [ibid]
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Although the CIA has conducted scores of drone missile strikes against targets in Pakistan with the tacit approval of the Pakistani military, those operations have been confined to the country's federally administered tribal areas that abut eastern Afghanistan. The Pakistani government has not been willing to allow any strikes in Baluchistan, the province directly across the border from Kandahar. Many senior Taliban leaders are believed to be living in and around Baluchistan's capital, Quetta. - Rajiv Chandrasekaran, December 14, 2010 [ibid]
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The Julian Assange WikiLeaks Fraud
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[Julian Assange]...is playing petty games with the U.S. And his claims of creating ‘open governments’ is an illusion. If he really wanted to promote free speech he wouldn’t have targeted the U.S. But would have targeted truly closed governments. ...It must be pretty difficult to get your hands on documents from closed governments like China, Iran and Russia.
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...[If] Julian Assange was truly on a mission to open closed governments, he would have started with closed governments and continued to hack and upload their documents. You can visit the WikiLeaks website. - Leila Jones, Prime Writer Network, Hope Julian Assange and WikiLeaks, bank expose isn’t insider trading- FBI already on it, December 1st, 2010
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Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Monday, December 13, 2010

ANSWERS: Submarine Mystery Questions - 12-10-2010

For background on reported Japanese submarine sightings see original posting. - The late (d-1986) science fiction author "L. Ron" Hubbard (LRH) developed a self-help system published in 1950, called Dianetics, elements of which he incorporated into doctrines and rituals of the Church of Scientology.
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On 19 July 1941, Hubbard had been commissioned an Ensign, USN. On 21 April 1943, the date of her commissioning, Hubbard took command of the submarine chaser PC-815, a fast vessel intended for anti-submarine warfare. On June 28, 1943, off the coat of the Coronado Islands, Hubbard ordered his crew to fire the ship's 3"/50 caliber dual purpose cannon. At the time the 3" cannon was fired, the Coronado Islands, in Mexico's territorial waters, were both inhabited and in PC-815's line of fire.
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Ironically, PC-815 would later be sunk in thick fog in a collision with USS Laffey, 11 September 1945, off San Diego coast. The Laffey rescued all but one of PC-815’s crew before returning to port.
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ANSWERS:
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1) - Subject individual (LRH) aspired to the U.S. Naval academy. Was he a USNA graduate? ANS: No; after intensive prepping by his mother in order to qualify for admittance to the Naval Academy, LRH failed math. He graduated from a Virginia prep school in June 1930, but due to nearsightedness was determined unqualified for the Naval Academy.
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2) - Where did he (LRH) meet CDR J.C. Thompson? ANS: On Guam; Between 1927 and 1929, Hubbard traveled twice to his father's U.S. Navy post on Guam. While there, young Hubbard was befriended by CDR Joseph "Snake" Thompson (1874–1943), who was stationed there with the Naval Medical Corps.
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3) - Did he (LRH) die destitute or leave an estate of almost $600 million? ANS: On January 24, 1986, Hubbard died from a stroke at his ranch in Creston, California, at age 74, leaving an estate valued at about $600 million.
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Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Sunday, December 12, 2010

HMS Astute Sea Trials Extended Again, Again, Again....


12th December 2010 dailymail.co.uk

"HMS Calamity: First it ran aground, then it collided with a tug. Now Britain's £1.2bn flagship submarine breaks down on its first day back in service"

The troubled Royal Navy nuclear submarine that ran aground off Scotland has broken down on its first day back at sea. ...Last night experts identified a fault in the steam plant, which affected the propulsion and the desalination system that makes sea water drinkable for the vessel’s 90 crew.
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11 December 2010 11:48 PM UKPA "Stranded sub's sea trials breakdown"

A nuclear-powered submarine which ran aground two months ago broke down on its first day back at sea, it has emerged. HMS Astute had to head back to its base in Faslane, Scotland, last week after what officials described as a "minor defect". It is hoped the vessel will be back in service this week.
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October 22, 2010 M.E. HMS Astute's Third Fishy, Publicity-Attracting, Incident in 3 months
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CONJECTURE: Sea Trials are purposefully being drawn out by the British MoD until HMS Astute can collide with her future sister ship, HMS Ambush when it is slated to begin trials next year.
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RATIONALE: This could finally prove to all subjects that: another approach to procuring large and complex weapons systems may be more prudent than home-made construction, and; that perhaps local submarine traffic is too congested to even entertain launching new fleet.
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Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Friday, December 10, 2010

Submarine Mystery Question - 12-10-2010


Partial Background (credulity has been challenged)

The son of a naval officer, he had studied at a Virginia prep school and become a limited aviator. During the Second World War, he skipped the Ensign rank and was commissioned a Ltjg in the Office of Naval Intelligence.
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Commanding the submarine chaser shown above, he reported and attacked two enemy submarines off the Oregon coast. The battle involved at least four other US vessels. Captains of two attacking Navy vessels subsequently claimed official denials of any Japanese submarine presence near the Pacific coast had been motivated by a desire to avoid panic among U.S. citizens.
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An official complaint by foreign authorities coupled with his failure to return to base as ordered, led to a Board of Investigation, which found he had disregarded orders. He was relieved of command, given a formal warning and transferred. Although he seems to have been relieved of command twice, and had received negative reports from his superiors on several occasions, he had also won praise as a "capable and energetic" officer, "if temperamental", an "above-average navigator", and as possessing "excellent personal and military character"
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In 1947, he requested psychiatric help from the Veterans Administration.
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Questions of the Week
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1) - Subject individual aspired to the U.S. Naval academy. Was he a USNA graduate?
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2) - Where did he meet CDR J.C. Thompson?
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3) - Did he die destitute or leave an estate of almost $600 million?
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ANSWERS: MONDAY (Comments Off)
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Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Thursday, December 09, 2010

Glimpse of Horrible Submarine Anomaly -1995

Former submarine CO Rubber Ducky recently said...
"vigilis: dunno when pinning whales became practice but not done that I'm aware of when I originally qualified. OTOH, drinking your dolphins was standard. "
12/07/2010 12:15 PM

Was pinning the wrong term? (In my own experiences, like Rubber Ducky's, only drinking dolphins had been standard practice.) Yes, it was actually known as tacking dolphins to a recently qualified submariner's chest. Both dolphin drinking and tacking practices had been banned by the navy as illegal hazing. Hence, the relative obscurity of related references.
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From tyjanium (age 29) 09-05-2008, 03:30 PM NAVYSEALS.com forum...

Sometimes it gets out of hand and bad things happen. Case in point, in 1995 a young sailor on the [USS] Los Angeles, a fast attack submarine, got his dolphins and inevitably got em tacked on. In keeping with the navy's policy, the commanding officer had made it clear that "tacking dolphins" would not be tolerated. One day underway a fellow sailor noticed the bruises on the kids chest and told his chain of command about. Ultimately the captain became aware of it and NCIS opened up an ivestigation. The kid wasn't about to rat on his shipmates, afterall getting your dolphins tacked on is a tradition and it was all done in good fun. The captain wouldn't relent and he threatened to secure liberty and not allow anyone to leave the boat when they returned to home port if this kid didn't fess up. Sure enough the boat gets back to port and no one goes home, the boat just sits moored to the pier with no one allowed to leave. This kid eventually goes on the topside watch, which is an armed sentry stationed anytime the boat is in port. Once he takes the watch and has his weapon he walks to the stern of the boat and takes his own life. [color emphasis mine]
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An accompanying link to the September 19, 1996 story by Honolulu Star Bulletin appears to have expired without online archiving.
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Given the boat's name and timeframe M.E. wondered if tyjanium's horrid story were even true.
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The initial search returned a submariner's name (2nd item listed) and rating. Also, Gunshot wound to the head.
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It is often necessary to separate truth from fiction. Sadly, a sinking feeling had set in already. My immediate condolences to his family, shipmates and friends. There is no doubt in my mind that Dennis had not only been a very good man, but a good submariner - not only qualified, but once his ship's Sailor of the Quarter.
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Why wasn't this more familiar? Perhaps because: The family contests the cause of death on the basis of insufficient investigation. [ibid]
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Readers interested in events leading up to the tragedy may find plenty here (pages 175-179 ):
The practices and procedures of the investigative services of the Department ... By United States. Congress. Senate. Committee.
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Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Admiral understates the obvious


Sevastopol - Interfax-Ukraine - Kyiv Post

Formal remarks during Ukrainian Armed Forces Day marked December 6, 2010:


In 2011 we will have more constructive aspects linked to inter-specific groups. I think that my colleague and I will again discuss what has to done. These will be worthy drills aimed at the protection of our native Ukraine and Russia here in Crimea, - Vice Admiral Vladimir Korolev, Commander of the Russian Black Sea Fleet

Thanking his colleague for training assistance provided to Ukrainian sailors on the Russian Black Fleet's submarine Alrosa [color emphasis mine]:


We are working together. They have provided significant assistance to us in training our submariners. I think that our submarine will soon also put to sea, - Ukrainian Navy Commander, Admiral Viktor Maksymov
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Notes: The Alrosa does not seem to have gotten underway on her own power since November 2009, when a minor malfunction requiring towing to port had been reported. More here. The Alrosa has often attracted unwanted attention as something of a mystery sub: The Federation's Sub Alrosa's First Mutiny ...
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Submarines are always silent and strange





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Monday, December 06, 2010

What the Chaplain Thought

NAVY black and BLUE story:


December 4, 2010 -NORFOLK - The Virginian-Pilot, Testimony: Senior chief used pepper spray, cuffs, stapler in abuse

Among the accusations made against the former head of the security department of the USS George H.W. Bush (CVN-77) during a preliminary hearing Friday, a Senior Chief Petty Officer is charged with more than a dozen counts of abusing junior sailors and disobeying orders.

Pepper-spraying two subordinates while they showered. Handcuffing sailors and kneeing them in a technique learned to subdue suspects. ...Stapling junior sailors' skin. ... regularly used an office stapler to staple into his skin, mostly on his back and upper thigh. Curtis stapled him that way more than 100 times,...

One of the scariest incidents he experienced was being strangled inside his office. When Edmonds entered the room, he said, Curtis grabbed a 4 -foot-long elastic exercise band, wrapped it around his neck and pulled it tight.

"The longer he held it, the more I couldn't breathe," Edmonds said. His vision began getting hazy, and he couldn't speak. Curtis stopped only when another master-at-arms shoved the senior chief into a door, Edmonds testified.


An angry e-mail even came from the ship's chaplain who thought the Senior Chief was out of line.


Was it a red stapler?


Submarines are always silent and strange.





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Thursday, December 02, 2010

A SECNAV's Imminent Dilemma

UPDATED (Friday 3 Dec 2010)

Without providing actual service dates, his US Navy Biography states, "...[he] served as a Surface Warfare Officer in the U.S. Navy aboard the cruiser USS Little Rock." The Surface Warfare Pin was first proposed in 1972 and, the Surface Warfare Officer (SWO) Qualification Program was not introduced until 1975. Lt(jg) Ray Mabus's naval service was from 1970 to 1972. (This is not a criticism of the SECNAV as much as example of embellishing his bio). Does Mabus's SWO claim cheapen the qualification not only of SWOs but of qualified submariners whose dolphins the SWO 'qualification' was designed to mimic?
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The last thing Navy Secretary Mabus wants to do before assigning women officers to subs late next year is to draw any more attention to female officer disciplinary problems this year. Which will attract more adverse publicity for the navy, allowing Capt. Graf to continue her Navy service, or discharging her like Capt. Lisa Nowak 2 months ago?
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Ray Mabus has already insulted male sailors of the 60s-70s era with his now infamous quote about his navy experience. He said, we never left port without leaving a couple of guys behind in jail.
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It is difficult to guess which "greater good" will inform lawyer Mabus's final decision on Holly Graf.
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The board of inquiry reconvened today at the Washington Navy Yard to hear the remainder of Capt. Graf’s attorneys’ witnesses. The panel is expected to make its recommendation on Graf's future by week's end, but it won't become official until Navy Secretary Ray Mabus accepts or rejects it. UPDATE: Panel Reccomends general discharge ( Friday 3 Dec 2010 ).
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If Mabus keeps Capt. Graf in the navy over the board's recommendation, he becomes toxic for sailor morale. Can the panel be influenced by legal loophole to recommend retention of Graf? The health of Mabus's carefully hyped women on subs program could be harmed. The oucome is going to be momentous, perhaps even career-ending, for SECNAV Mabus. Could this be what Nostradamus had predicted? Time will soon tell.
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Fortunately for everyone involved, Capt. Graf could not have been assigned to a submarine.
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Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Prostate Medical Study - Digit Size Apparently Matters; Submariner Digital Reaction

Every few months M.E. happens upon medical news with implications for the submarine service. Most recently, we covered Venous Risk (in pear-shaped females) and Submarine Service for you.
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What's the latest medical news? British Journal of Cancer , (30 November 2010) Hand pattern indicates prostate cancer risk [emphasis added].

Conclusion: Pattern of finger lengths may be a simple marker of prostate cancer risk, with length of 2D greater than 4D suggestive of lower risk.


Men whose index and ring fingers were the same length -- about 19 percent of those studied -- had a similar prostate cancer risk, but men whose index fingers were longer than their ring finger were 33 percent less likely to have prostate cancer.
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Other scientific studies of people's finger measurements (2D:4D ratios) produced conclusions of more relevance.
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Lesbians' finger lengths were, on average, more like men's. ... [W]e did not find a difference between gay and straight men in ring-to-index-finger ratios, but we did find a more masculine ratio in men who had more than one older brother when compared to men who had no older brothers...(Breedlove) - source
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What do digit ratios have to do with submariners? Illustrated in the panels below are digit ratios of some typical submariners past and present.
Submarines are always silent and strange.



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