You don’t need bombs and torpedos to destroy the Navy. Political correctness and terrible senior management are the Navy’s greatest threats. And today the Navy dropped a bomb on itself, with the help of Barack Obama.
Obama’s Secretary of the Navy eliminated the 241-year-old Navy enlisted rating system. Because Obama felt the ratings were too politically incorrect? They weren’t gender neutral. Via
No more Yeoman, Corpsman, or even Fire Control Technician. No more Torpedoman or Machinist’s Mate. No more Boatswain.
Now, a sailor is just “petty officer.”
What’s the big deal, you say?
It’s a big deal. I spoke to a Navy sailor about the dictate. “The biggest problem is many sailors feel like they have lost their identities and had absolutely no say in the matter,” he told me.
The sailor countered my assertion that this is about political correctness. This source says the move was to fill undesirable jobs, known as billets. (Warning: salty sailor talk): “Even the females are pissed. It has nothing to do with gender neutrality it’s about the Navy trying to fill unwanted billets. No one wants to be a Shit Shoveler on the USS Never Home so now the Navy expects everyone to be a Shit Shoveler.”
Here’s what that means.
Say a submarine tender has an open billet for a junior Boatswain’s Mate. That job entails a lot of hard, back-breaking work like chipping paint, rigging lines. There’s little chance of promotion. And submarine tenders, while vital and dangerous, are not the sexiest ships in the Navy. Few people ask for orders to the deck division of a tender.
The Navy doesn’t assign Yeoman or a Torpedoman to a tender’s deck div. But if everybody’s just a petty officer, anybody can get those orders. Petty officer is the great equalizer.
By eliminating ratings, the Navy can eliminate a headache for its leadership while making sailors lives miserable. Management guru Peter Drucker said all problems are management problems. In this case, the Navy’s senior management solved a problem for themselves by dumping it on the enlisted community. It’s bad management 101.
Whether driven by political correctness or lousy management, the Navy’s decision will lead to future retention and quality-of-recruit problems. Quality enlisted people will likely flee in droves. That means less desirable recruits will move in, reducing readiness and increasing accidents. But the managers can go home at 3:30.
This is how you destroy the United States Navy.
And this opens up a great opportunity for Donald Trump. “Seriously, most people here I talk to don’t support Trump or Hilary, but if Trump could come out on this issue and call it bullshit like it truly is, he would gain a whole lot of support.”