Tag Archives: Bryan Clark

Two fold

I was in a situation, the river has come to a branch and if I take one path, I cannot take the other (today), I preferred to do the other story, but the dice are still rolling and they will continue on rolling for a day or two, so as I waited yesterday, I am now taking the other branch. The other branch takes me to an article by Bryan Clark and Dan Patt. Defense One gives us an article called ‘The Pentagon Needs Budget Agility to Compete with China’, the article (at https://www.defenseone.com/ideas/2021/02/pentagon-needs-budget-agility-compete-china/172037/) is quite good. I have some reservations on a few matters, but that does not make their point of view false or incorrect. There is an issue with “Spending plans are built two years in advance to account for internal haggling and Congressional deliberation; and if appropriation delays require continuing resolutions, the gap between planning and execution grows even longer. Further entrenching funding choices, budgets are distributed into discrete program elements across multiple appropriation categories from operations and maintenance to procurement”, an example here is ‘if appropriation delays require continuing resolutions’ is not an incorrect statement, but there is a problem when the continuing resolution drives up the cost, not if the continuing resolution is to halt overspending (example USS Zumwalt), the other side is any project where software takes an unprecedented side of the cost (again the USS Zumwalt) and that is before you realise just how ugly that dinghy is. And that is before the larger picture becomes distorted. Should Prince Mohammad bin Salman approve my proposal to change one planned squadron to the upgraded Chengdu J-20, 1-2 billion dollars meant to go to the US treasury will not go there due to blocked arms sales, there is every indication that China will want to move in before Russia has the option. This is merely step one, the blocked deals in the US and the UK represent 4-7 billion in total (so far not all deals are blocked). Yet when we consider ‘The Pentagon Needs Budget Agility’, the Pentagon will see a new stage where agility goes to the basement. And in the end, they did it to themselves, all these one sided idiots blaming the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, all whilst the actions of Houthi and Iranian Houthis (read: Iran) are ignored is nothing short of really stupid and this year there will be a large price to pay, A stage where they all make claims that it does not really matter, yet the fact that up to $4,000,000,000 is lost to the US is nothing to snivel at. So when we are given “Almost all of DoD’s capabilities, even some innovative ideas like precision-guided weapons, are iteratively developed. These efforts suffer under today’s predictive and inflexible budget process” they seem to forget that the one option for the ‘inflexible budget process’ was a customer base that goes beyond the US. The lack of that will have repercussions, yet if I get my commissions, I will actually not care that much. Its a dog eat dog world and I am seeing the options of a nice juicy steak, so whilst silly Democrats hide behind ‘Anti-war Democrats applaud Biden for freeze on U.S. arms sales to Saudi Arabia’, I feel vindicated, because my share on selling a copy of Mario Kart is nothing compared to me selling Saudi Arabia a set of 6 Chengdu J-20’s and the loss to America is one that they did to themselves. Now if I can only muster the contacts to sell the other parts my life would soon become a lot less complex. 

It is nice to have a high moral ground, but on a bridge is it a lot harder to get all the fruit that are on the trees near the ground. Did they not understand that part?

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In pieces

When was the last time you went out and researched something? For me it started 83.4 minutes ago (roughly), to fight insomnia (meeting it half way) I decided to do a puzzle, and as I was completing the puzzle, I became mesmerised by the picture in the puzzle. The house is one of the most beautiful buildings I have ever seen. It turns out that it is a traditional maramures monk house in Romania, the image is from Adrian Domokos (at https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/traditional-maramures-monk-house-1190795452). I soon found a few other examples, but for some reason Adrian captured something the others did not and I cannot get the right words to describe it. Yet the house is printed on my mind, and as my mind is working out other things it is also converting that very same house to a Minecraft place of living. You might not get that, which is fair enough, but my mind captures things and recreates it in different dimensions, sometimes for fun, sometimes for other reasons. 

I am (at times) hesitant to let the mind wonder freely, not merely because it tends to lead to insomnia, in other cases it got me to design something to sink the Iranian fleet with (one needs goals after all), yet when I was rethinking the weapon and its delivery system I considered that this solution would also work on that ugly American contraption called the Zumwalt class, and lets be fair, that thing is way too ugly to not make it sink, especially as Defense News gave us yesterday ‘US Navy eyes new design for next-generation destroyer’, as such we get “I don’t want to build a monstrosity. But I need deeper magazines on ships than I have right now,” the chief of naval operations said. “I’m limited with respect to DDG Flight IIIs in terms of what additional stuff we could put on those ships. … So the idea is to come up with the next destroyer, and that would be a new hull. The idea would be to put existing technologies on that hull and update and modernise those capabilities over time”, the added “To avoid another costly failure, such as the canceled next-generation cruiser or severely truncated DDG-1000 program, the service is harkening back to its successful Arleigh Burke program, the mainstay of the Navy’s surface combatant program for the past 30 years”. A program with in mind building 32 dinghy’s and 29 of them got cancelled, the there three never properly worked. A wasted $22.5 billion, well, let’s consider that it is not much if you say it fast (I dare you). And when we consider that “the Zumwalt had been sold to Congress based on unrealistic minimum-cost estimates. Eventually, program costs exceeded the budget by 50 percent, triggering an automatic cancelation”, so in light of the unrealistic minimum cost estimates, did anyone go to jail? Did these estimators get paid? So we have a stage where my 5G solutions require ‘assurances’ for the $25,000,000 initial part whilst the $22,500,000,000 sails into the deep end without any problems (or assurances for that matter)? Oh and that is all before we consider these so called smart bullet, the ones that Congress would not approve as it was well over $1,000,000 per shot, How much was sunk into that part? 

So the rebel rouser in me thought it might optionally be a nice idea to try the new weapon system called ‘Gordian One’ on the USS Zumwalt, you know, before we piss off all the Iranians, and lets be honest, there might be some congratulatory slap on the back in it for me from an American Admiral or two (isn’t that why we tend to be innovative?), ahh well, such is life I say!

And lets face it, no one asked anything about the Zumwalt class and what the need was to ignore the Arleigh Burke-class destroyer. We know that the Zumwalt was designed and build for a very different kind of war, one that it was not able to do in the first place, but let’s not haggle on those details. And all this is before you realise that the Zumwalt class (compared to the Arleigh Burke-class destroyer) is almost 987% more expensive, so how exactly do we need to see the setting of ‘minimum-cost estimates’, me thinks that someone was buttering their bread on both sides other thickly, yet that is merely my personal train of thought. 

So whilst we look at one and the other, why was there so much about some traditional maramures monk house in Romania? Well, that is linked to the topic of Copyright Law and the nice setting of some silly bugger registering a few pieces of paper and forgot a setting or two with a few documents, which gave me the idea as I looked at the hull alloys and you see, the setting of a Tumblehome wave piercing hull sounds nice, but there are constraints too and that is where I started to wonder, if it sinks the Iranian fleet, the Zumwalt might not really have a chance either. In addition, even if Gordian One does not do its intended purpose, the stability of the Zumwalt will change enough for it to sink itself (which might be poetic justice in its own right). 

So whilst the USNI News reports that ‘Navy Lacks ‘Clear Theory of Victory’ Needed to Build New Fleet, Experts Tell House Panel’, I decided to gain victory by building a weapon system that achieved more than one goal (not telling the kids at present), and as that is shown to work and the delivery system works (not tested yet), we see a stage where Bryan Clark, a naval analyst and a senior fellow at the Hudson Institute gives us “We don’t really have that clear theory of victory or operational concept today”, OK, here at this point I take one step back and if I misreported on his quote then I apologise (I tend to not have access to confidential US Navy events), yet if I did voice it correctly, we have a much larger problem. If it is true that the Navy is in doubt on ‘clear theory of victory’ or on ‘operational concept’, which flagrant yahoo of a milk-dud admiral approved the stage of the extremely sinkable Zumwalt Class? It seems to me that clear stages leading to victory and a natural need of irrational concepts is essential for any new boat, submarine, dinghy or pleasure cruiser (Spearhead-class). And if the staged speculated theory of victory is not visible, no Zumwalt class should ever exist. That was clear from day one, was it not? Here we go back to the beginning, traditional maramures monk house in Romania had a set stage, a stage it still fulfils almost a century after it is build, the Zumwalt has been unable to meet basic standards from day one, and people wonder why I want to test a new weapon system on it? Well, consider that I would never test it on the Blue Ridge, as that ship after 47 years is still working to near perfect levels of excellence, the USS Blue Ridge (LCC-19) is expected to get its retirement in 20 years, however there is every chance that it could function until deep past 2055, when we see these events, when we see these parts of success, can we at least begin to understand what an utter failure the Zumwalt class is? 

So with the stage of the Zumwalt being uglier than a really old building in Romania and less functional than pretty much anything in the US Navy, I leave you to try and tackle my other needs. Have a great day!

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