The Only Thing We Know




1968 was a bad year for submarines. The French, the Israelis, the Russians, and the United States all lost boats that year. For the US, the loss of Scorpion has proven to be particularly vexing. Even in Submarine School in 1982 it was discussed and debated.

At the end of the day, there are several theories as to what happened. Was it a Russian torpedo in retaliation for the loss of K-129? was it a hot running Mk 37 that couldn’t be shut down and detonated in the torpedo room? Was it a battery that exploded? Why did at least one crew member try to escape?

When everything is said and done, when we think about the loss of 99 men on this day in 1968, there is really only one thing that we know.

And that is that we don’t know…


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Feres Declined


Yesterday, it was announced that the Supreme Court had declined to hear a case which was challenging the Feres Doctrine. This is a long-standing SCOTUS ruling that military personnel are not permitted to sue the Government for medical malpractice or in the event of injury, illness or even death.

Many, including two sitting Associate Justices, have criticized the Doctrine for its unfairness. But is it really unfair?


Feelings vs Reality



There is a truth that nobody really wants to talk about. The truth is that Women’s Professional Hockey leagues are never going to compete with or even be truly comparable with the NHL. You can argue it all you want, but nobody is going to pay NHL or even ECHL ticket prices for Women’s Professional Hockey.

Look, I am not saying that women can’t play. In fact, I’ve played with some outstanding women players – at the amateur level. All I am saying is that when the rubber meets the ice, physical and biology will always rule.

At the same time, the very existence of Women’s sports is being called into question by the introduction of transgendered men into the game. Despite what Wisconsin Congressman Pocan says, it really is about men playing women’s sports and absolutely dominating them. Because in many sports, particularly contact sports, men are on the average, bigger, faster and stronger. It’s not misogyny, it’s biology.

But if it puts butts in the seats, more and more Pro and College Sports Programs are going to be more and more open to transgender athletes…


 

Moral Arguments




In the initial fallout of the Alabama Bomb come the moral arguments. for all of the debate over whether or not a fetus is a human life or just a “mass of cells,” the one that stands out to me is the “My Body My choice” arguments.

Why?

Because regardless of where you are on the abortion issue, the “My Body My choice” argument has far-reaching implications. Farther than most people are willing to consider in their white-hot anger that blinds them to anything beyond whether or not an abortion is a mortal sin worthy of ninety-nine years in jail or a choice to be made by a single person.

The bigger problem is that most people, regardless of side, would find themselves nodding in agreement with the implications of MBMC. but have they really and truly considered it as a moral argument?


When Alabama Gets The Bomb




One of my mentors in this business once told me that there are topics which should always be avoided. The number one reason for that is that nothing that I say is going to change anybody’s mind. Period. People have already made up their minds about it and anybody who says that they haven’t is lying.

That said, Alabama has passed the strictest anti-abortion law in the nation. There are any number of people who will praise this and those who will condemn it. The bigger issues will get almost no play in the discussion. First of all, as things stand today, the Alabama law is unconstitutional. Not even the people who passed it think that that is untrue. In fact, they admit it. Further, that is exactly what they want. Why? Because they fervently believe that this will land in front of the US Supreme Court and that they will come out of that with Roe v Wade overturned.

As things stand today, that isn’t going to happen. I have strong doubts as to whether or not the Supreme Court would even hear the case, let alone overturn Roe.

But let’s play the long game. What effect does this Alabama law have on the future of politics in 2020 and 2022?


For the record (again), I am anti-abortion.

I also believe that is a decision to be made by my wife and me with our Medical professional. It is not your or the governments’ place. Like a gay marriage, if you don’t want one, don’t get one. But stop imposing your morals and religious values on me.


 

The Air Force Resurrects Another B-52 From the Boneyard

“Wise Guy” is only the second B-52 brought back from retirement to flying status.

Source: The Air Force Resurrects Another B-52 From the Boneyard

The U.S. Air Force has returned a B-52 bomber retired eleven years ago to active duty service, only the second time in history that has happened. The bomber, nicknamed “Wise Guy,” was brought out of storage at the aircraft “Boneyard” in Arizona, refurbished, and returned to service at Barksdale, Louisiana. The bomber could easily spend another two or three decades on active duty.

“Wise Guy”, a B-52H bomber, was retired in 2008 and sent to the 309th Aerospace Maintenance and Regeneration Group at Davis-Monathan Air Force Base in Arizona. The facility, known as “the Boneyard”, is home to over 4,000 military aircraft in various states of storage. The hot, dry air of the southwestern desert prevents stored aircraft from developing rust or other corrosion issues. Some aircraft are stored for quick recall, while others are in pieces and slowly stripped of parts to support active duty planes.

Wise Guy was stored for a relatively quick return to service if needed. The War Zone blog states that the bomber will replace a B-52H that crashed and burned in 2015 at Andersen Air Force Base, on the island of Guam. Bringing the bomber back from Arizona will boost the B-52 fleet back to the desired number of 76 aircraft.

According to a local Baton Rouge, Louisiana news report, the bomber is destined for the 307th Bomb Wing, an Air Force Reserve unit that flies both the B-1B and B-52 bombers.

Not all B-52s are capable of carrying nuclear weapons, but it appears Wise Guy will operate in the nuclear role. The report states that the 307th includes “nuclear certified combat squadrons”, and the B-1B no longer carries nuclear weapons. A recent Federation of American Scientists report says the B-52H no longer carries nuclear gravity bombs but still carries the Air Launched Cruise Missile armed with the W80-1 thermonuclear warhead. The W80-1 has a variable yield of 5 or 150 kilotons’ explosive force.

According to The War Zone the bomber was flown back from Arizona to Louisiana with the same MT tail code that it had when retired in Minot Air Force Base in 2008. The aircraft missed some upgrades in the eleven years it has been out of service and will need to be brought to the latest configuration before going back onto active duty. The bomber also sported some graffiti left behind by the previous crew or maintainers when the giant bomber was retired.

“Wise Guy” is only the second B-52H ever brought back into service, with “Ghost Rider” leaving the Boneyard and joining the 307th Wing in 2015. An estimated dozen or so B-52Hs remain in Arizona, ready for re-enlistment if necessary.

The transcript of the pilots talking through their creation of ‘sky dong’ is even better than their drawing – Task & Purpose

The investigation, thankfully, included the in-flight conversation from a video recording system in the aircraft, and it is absolutely hilarious.

Source: The transcript of the pilots talking through their creation of ‘sky dong’ is even better than their drawing – Task & Purpose