John Kerry's private C-17 ride

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by aaronvan, Jun 1, 2015.

  1. aaronvan Suspended

    aaronvan

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    #1
    John Kerry breaks his leg in France, so his private Massachusetts physician flies into Geneva on the taxpayers dime (guess European doctors aren’t qualified to make a diagnoses on the Great Man’s leg.) So now that he has confirmed "yep, she's broken" Kerry gets a private ride on a fully-staffed USAF C-17, costing the taxpayer thousands and spewing ungodly amounts of greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere. Is this covered by Obamacare? I once flew coach, hobbling around on crutches with a broken leg. No problemo. They could have flown him home on a hot air balloon with Kerry supplying the hot air for free.

    This was not a job-related injury so Kerry should pay out of his own pocket. After all, he married into billion dollars.

    https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2...surgery-leg/UiCVeVyyoQNMLgsR9kSuiO/story.html
     
  2. Scepticalscribe, Jun 1, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2015

    Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

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    #2
    Firstly, - elsewhere I have posted about the ludicrous tendency of middle aged men to don tight fitting sports gear and suffer while puffing and panting their way to an appearance of health, instead of doing something a lot more sensible such as sitting with a load of state papers, and working your way through the lot accompanied by a generous tot of cognac or whiskey. This health fetish is frankly, bonkers.

    There were a few things our nineteenth century ancestors got right, and one of them was not to have to pretend that you are in the first flush of youth - or, that you even like all this health stuff - if you happen to be a senior political leader.

    However, when the senior diplomat or foreign affairs specialist of a country falls ill, or suffers an accident, while abroad,it is even more ludicrous not to use state funds to bring him home for medical treatment.

    John Kerry was abroad on Government business; whether or not his injury (which I think perfectly ludicrous, but then, I think middle aged men pretending to be an Adonis and seeking to prove themselves youthful to an uninformed electorate which should judge them on other, more fitting, criteria, are ludicrous) was job-related is irrelevant. You can cut yourself shaving or fall down the stairs or fall off your bicycle. If the reason you are abroad is serving your government, then, the public interest pays for your transport home.

    And, in a context such as this, to introduce an objection on environmental grounds strikes me as being a little disingenuous, in much the same way that hotels invite you not to request fresh laundry or towels 'for the environment' while simultaneously and surreptitiously paying their staff well below the minimum wage.
     
  3. vrDrew macrumors 65816

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    #3


    This fracture is probably considerably more complicated than most - since it
    occurred high on the thing, and apparently also involves the site of previous hip replacement surgery.

    As active Secretary of State Kerry is required to travel on US Government aircraft, equipped with secure communications, as well as capable of carrying his Secret Service detail.

    I'm sure whatever air wing provided this transportation will write it up as a training mission, or whatever military doublespeak they use for such activities.

    This reminds me of the brouhaha that erupted last year when the US Navy rescued a US family whose boat became incapacitated off the coast of Mexico.
     
  4. aaronvan thread starter Suspended

    aaronvan

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    #4
    True story: in the early 00s, a USAF crew flying from Germany to CONUS decided as a joke to strip down to their birthdays suits and take photos of each other flying their C-17, totally nude. Of course, they emailed the photos to their friends and eventually the photos reached some colonel with zero sense of humor and they all received non-judicial punishment.
     
  5. Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

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    #5
    I don't doubt that it is a true story, but why 1) do this in the first place, and 2) why photograph proof of such stupidity?
     
  6. vrDrew macrumors 65816

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    #6
    CONUS = Contiguous United States.

    Only the US military would come up with - and use - an acronym like that.:rolleyes:

    I'm sure that a certain degree of tedium sets in on any long training flight. And I'd like to think I was possessed of a reasonable sense of humor. But combining group nudity and photography seems like a questionable endeavor at the best of times. Doubly so aboard a military aircraft.

    They'd gotten kicked off the Business Class cabin of a commercial airplane they weren't flying. And arrested and charged once they got back to the US. All things considered, they got off lightly.
     
  7. aaronvan thread starter Suspended

    aaronvan

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    #7
    Well, it is kind of funny and those pilots were probably 22-24 year-old kids. Remember, back in the day people were still pretty clueless about the internet. In 1996-7 we had a staff duty NCO (guy who sits around all night in case the phone rings) who spent his nights surfing porn on the brigade commander's PC. Back then websites weren't blocked and deleting the browser history wasn't even a concept. Old man came in one day and went ballistic. Sergeant Knucklehead hadn't even closed the browser. :eek: I don't think those pilots suffered any career-ending punishment, probably just letters of reprimand in their local file. That, and the knowledge that those photos will last forever on the Internet probably wised them up quick.
     
  8. Scepticalscribe, Jun 1, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2015

    Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

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    #8
    My thoughts also.

    To those who cite 'humour', as a defence, or cavil about 'lack of humour', there is a further point here, which is that when you represent your government - or your administration - or your country abroad, irrespective of whether you are a civilian or in uniform as military personnel, your conduct and behaviour needs to be cognisant of this fact.

    This is because you are not travelling in a private or personal capacity and therefore, in a situation where you are answerable to nobody other than yourself, your family, and possibly, your company or boss. Instead, in your person you are presenting a presence that is - whether or not you like it - when you wear the uniform, you are seen as representing your country.

    I'd be underwhelmed, too.
     
  9. Scepticalscribe, Jun 1, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2015

    Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

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    #9
    No, seriously, it is not.

    Do that stuff in your private space, on your personal computer, but not when you wear the uniform, and not on company, or government or work time, or on Government property or equipment. That is asinine behaviour; there are days in my life when I think stupidity should be made illegal.

    When you wear the uniform, you represent your country, and it doesn't matter if you are a 22-24 year old kid. Somewhere along the line, you have to grow up, and learn that there is a time and a place where you can behave like an idiot, and there are places - which includes any and all work places - where you cannot and it isn't even funny..
     
  10. vrDrew macrumors 65816

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    #10
    I consider myself somewhat fortunate to have come of age at a time when creating viewable photographs required, for most people, the intervention of a trained third party with chemicals and special equipment to develop and print them.

    This tended to make the taking, and collection, of risqué photographic images of oneself and acquaintances quite rare. I have definite memories of returning from one trip to a Jamiaican resort and finding that my local 1Hr Photo lab had taken it upon itself to destroy any pictures showing the - topless, naturally - German young lady who had made a habit of parading up and down the beach in front of our villa.

    These days, taking a selfie "au naturel" - and trading them with ones friends - seems to be almost an expected right of passage. What God hath wrought, indeed.
     
  11. aaronvan, Jun 1, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2015

    aaronvan thread starter Suspended

    aaronvan

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    #11
    I went to Italy with some buddies. Got back and took my 35mm film to the shop. A week later I picked up my prints, the old German guy giving me an odd look. Turns out my "buddies" got my camera, passed it around, and exposed an entire roll of film: 24 photos of Harry Johnson. I had to admire their chutzpah.
     
  12. aaronvan thread starter Suspended

    aaronvan

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    #12
    Although I believe everyone has leeway to make mistakes--especially in youth--you are 100% correct.
     
  13. JamesMike, Jun 1, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2015

    JamesMike macrumors demi-god

    JamesMike

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    #13
    Just a minor point for you. The Secretary of State is not protected by the Secret Service, he is protected by the Diplomatic Security Service.
     
  14. vrDrew macrumors 65816

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    #14


    Getting back to the original topic, I guess I'm going to disagree you with on this issue.

    From my own personal experience and observations, I cannot overstate the value - to anyone engaged in mentally or emotionally taxing work - in partaking in some form of vigorous physical exercise.

    As an enthusiastic bicycle rider, and the owner of a few pairs of ludicrous lycra shorts myself, the mental and physical benefits of a hour or two of road cycling at the end of a stressful work day are considerable. Because road cycling (as opposed to using a stationary bike in a gym) requires a fair amount of attention to traffic, grade, road surface, etc. one's mind can take a break from whatever may be bothering you at work. Food tastes better, and one definitely sleeps much better at night.

    I for one applaud senior Government officials that insist on a daily dose of physical exercise. And I believe that criticism of politicians - be it President Obama playing golf or pickup basketball; President Bush riding his mountain bike, or even Reagan clearing brush on his ranch - is misplaced.
     
  15. JamesMike macrumors demi-god

    JamesMike

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    #15
    Having just turned 65 years old, I enjoy my physical training even though I'm semi-retired. To me it adds balance to my life, plus working in the security business, you don't want an out of shape security person trying to kick in your door to rescue you. As it concerns the Secretary of State, I like him doing the biking, seeing his security detail having to keep up is fun for me, I worked for DSS many years ago...LOL!
     
  16. lowendlinux Contributor

    lowendlinux

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    #16
    I had the same SGT Knucklehead except he was watching it on the TV after the incident the only thing we were allowed to do on staff duty was to read regulations. You can read a 670-1 thee times in a 24hr period.
     
  17. Robisan macrumors 6502

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    #17
    Umm, you do know that the Secretary of State travels in US government aircraft dedicated to the SOS, right? And that US Government aircraft is maintained and operated by the US Air Force (e.g. "Air Force 1"). The only issue here is which US Air Force plane was used to fly him - his traditional civilian (probably) Boeing or the C-17 transport. This is a panty bunch over nothing IMO.
     

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