21 October 2010

Don't Ask, Don't Care, redux...

Gays Allowed to Enter the Military - Marc Ambinder - Politics - The Atlantic

Are we at the end of this ridiculous policy? I certainly hope so. Since the President and Congress couldn't get thier act together, it took the Log Cabin Republicans to force this absurd restriction into the light. Hopefully it will wither and die.

15 October 2010

When it counts...

Okay - maybe too hardcore for a recruiting ad, but it sure captures the spirit of the Corps.

Semper Fi.

12 October 2010

Remember the Cole...

I had the distinct privilege of supporting the rebuilding of the USS
Cole (DDG 67) in Pascagoula, Mississippi. She was horribly damaged by a
small boat attack in the port of Aden, Yemen ten years ago. The
camaraderie and dedication of the civilian / military team working on
her was uplifting. The ship was refit and back in action after what had
been crippling damage.

Navy Honors Killed, Injured in USS Cole Attack
Tue, 12 Oct 2010 15:33:00 -0500

Navy Honors Killed, Injured in USS Cole Attack

By Donna Miles
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Oct. 12, 2010 - Navy officials, current and former crew
members and families of the fallen gathered today at Norfolk Naval
Station, Va., to remember the 17 sailors killed and 39 others wounded in
the al-Qaida attack on the USS Cole 10 years ago today.

Click photo for screen-resolution image
The guided-missile destroyer USS Cole arrives in Naples, Italy, for a
scheduled port call while deployed to the U.S. 6th Fleet area of
responsibility, Feb. 23, 2010. U.S. Navy photo by Petty Officer 2nd
Class William Pittman
(Click photo for screen-resolution image);high-resolution image
> available.
Suicide bombers launched the surprise Oct. 12, 2000, attack on the
Arleigh Burke-class, Aegis-equipped guided missile destroyer as it was
anchored in Aden, Yemen, for a routine refueling stop. The attackers
detonated an explosive-laden boat against the ship's port side, tearing
a 40-by-40-foot hole in the hull and sending seawater gushing into the
engineering compartment.

The attack was the deadliest assault against a U.S. naval vessel since
the Iraqis attacked the USS Stark on May 17, 1987.

Retired Navy Cmdr. Kirk Lippold, the Cole's commander during the attack,
recalled the impact of the blast.

"There was a thunderous explosion. You could feel all 505 feet and 8,400
tons of guided missile destroyer violently thrust up and to the right,"
Lippold said during a recent radio interview. "Lights went out, and
within a matter of seconds, I knew we'd been attacked."

During today's ceremonies, Navy Adm. J.C. Harvey Jr., commander of USS
Fleet Command, saluted the Cole crewmembers' quick response and valor as
they fought to keep the ship afloat and tended to the wounded while
defending against a feared follow-on attack.

Harvey said the attack underscores the importance of always being
trained and prepared, and he praised the sense of vigilance that has
been passed down to subsequent USS Cole crews.

After 14 months of upgrades and repairs following the attack, the USS
Cole made an overseas deployment in November 2003. The ship later
deployed to the Middle East in June 2006.

The USS Cole, which recently returned to its Norfolk homeport after a
deployment that took it through the Gulf of Aden, shows no visible
evidence of the deadly attack that occurred a decade ago. But below its
decks are regular reminders, including a blackened U.S. flag that
survived the attack and 17 gold stars that line the ship's "Hall of
Heroes" passageway.

As a ship's bells rang 17 times during today's ceremonies, the names of
the fallen 17 sailors were read aloud:

* Petty Officer 2nd Class Kenneth Eugene Clodfelter, 21, a hull
maintenance technician from Mechanicsville, Va.;

* Chief Petty Officer Richard Costelow, 35, an electronics technician
from Morrisville, Pa.;

*Seaman Lakeina Monique Francis, 19, a mess management specialist from
Woodleaf, N.C.;

* Seaman Timothy Lee Gauna, 21, an information systems technician from
Rice, Texas;

* Seaman Cherone Louis Gunn, 22, a signalman from Rex, Ga.;

* Seaman James Rodrick McDaniels, 19, of Norfolk, Va.;

* Petty Officer 2nd Class Marc Ian Nieto, 24, an engineman from Fond du
Lac, Wis.;

* Petty Officer 2nd Class Ronald Scott Owens, 24, an electronics warfare
technician from Vero Beach, Fla.;

* Seaman Lakiba Nicole Palmer, 22, of San Diego, Calif.;

* Seaman Joshua Langdon Parlett, 19, an engine room fireman from
Churchville, Md.;

* Seaman Patrick Howard Roy, 19, a fireman from Cornwall on Hudson,

* Petty Officer 1st Class Kevin Shawn Rux, 30, an electronic warfare
technician from Portland, N.D.;

* Petty Officer 3rd Class Ronchester Manangan Santiago, 22, a mess
management specialist from Kingsville, Texas.;

* Petty Officer 2nd Class Timothy Lamont Saunders, 32, an operations
specialist from Ringgold, Va.;

* Seaman Gary Graham Swenchonis Jr., 26, a fireman from Rockport, Texas;

* Ensign Andrew Triplett, 31, of Macon, Miss.; and

* Seaman Craig Bryan Wibberley, 19, of Williamsport, Md.

Related Sites:
USS Cole <http://www.cole.navy.mil/default.aspx>
10th Anniversary Video

Click photo for screen-resolution image
> Military Sealift Command's fleet ocean tug USNS
Catawba tows the USS Cole from the port city of Aden, Yemen, Oct. 29,
2000, after a terrorist attack that caused the ship heavy damage and
killed 17 sailors. U.S. Marine Corps photo
Download screen-resolution
Download high-resolution

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11 October 2010

The Futility of Finding Physical Explanations for Homeopathy...

The Futility of Finding Physical Explanations for Homeopathy

This post from Quackometer, covers the broad arguments against any efficacy from homeopathy. In the United States, billions of dollars are spent on un/dis-proven, fraudulent or dangerous medical therapies. Homeopathy falls into the category of disproven. No evidence exists of its effectiveness, save anecdotal testimony from patients and practitioners.

Sadly, there remain many folks who continue to espouse this waste of time, resources and possibly delay of meaningful diagnosis and treatment. Take some time to read the post and then travel to the magical land of the homeopathic believers.

Ironically, one of the most popular posts of mine is a critique of the effectiveness of a "homeopathic / herbal" cold remedy known as Sinupret.