The Admiral's Full Circle: Welcome Aboard Sir!

Vice Admiral John C. Harvey, Jr. took his first plunge into the blogosphere at the USNI blog where he commented:

... With respect to your comment concerning participation in the blogosphere and the upcoming milbloggers conference, let me speak pretty plainly - most of the blogs I've dropped in on and read on a regular basis leave me pretty cold. Too many seem to be interested in scoring cheap, and anonymous, hits vice engaging in meaningful and professional exchanges. There is also a general lack of reverence for facts and an excess of emotion that, for me, really reduces the value of the blog. Incorrect/inaccurate data and lots of hype may be entertaining for some, but just doesn't work for me.

My best example of a truly worthwhile blog, worthy of our time and intellectual engagement, is the Small Wars Journal. The tone is always professional, the subject matter is compelling and the benefit from participating is significant.

All that said, here I am - I recognize the reality of the blogosphere and the potential that exists for worthwhile exchanges that enhance our professional knowledge and overall awareness. My intent is to continue to participate when I can and where I see I can make a contribution to a professional exchange, but my view today is that the bloggers generally see their activity as far more meaningful than I do right now. I do, however, remain hopeful...

Since then, and still finding time to drop in here for a comment or two, Admiral Harvey has been blogging at USNI and most recently, and most importantly, put up his own stake at the US Fleet Forces Command Blog.

First, thank you for your encouragement and your patience as I continue to learn the best way to run this Blog so that we can have an honest and robust dialogue...

Welcome aboard Admiral - fair winds and following seas...

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I hate to be the buzz kill on this, but what's up with the straw man argument here:

. . .most of the blogs Ive dropped in on and read on a regular basis leave me pretty cold. Too many seem to be interested in scoring cheap, and anonymous, hits vice engaging in meaningful and professional exchanges. There is also a general lack of reverence for facts and an excess of emotion that, for me, really reduces the value of the blog. Incorrect/inaccurate data and lots of hype may be entertaining for some, but just doesnt work for me.


. . .but my view today is that the bloggers generally see their activity as far more meaningful than I do right now. I do, however, remain hopeful...

His first "plunge" into the blogosphere is to tell us how useless blogs are? Nice. Does he have any examples?

That sort of dismissive broad-brushing straight out of a 2004 stereotype not only insults the talented active and former military personnel who've paved the way for people like Vice Admiral Harvey in staking out ground in new and social media, but it's also the kind of remark that glaringly says, "I don't read blogs and I don't know what I'm talking about." Are there blogs out there like the ones he described? Of course. Do we take them seriously? I don't think so. In this instance, Vice Admiral Harvey has demonstrated a lack of awareness for sites that have enhanced the profession: Abu Muqawama, the bloggers at Foreign Policy, the CAC blog, Democracy Arsenal, Danger Room, and countless other individual milbloggers who ply their trade diligently and professionally.

Hopefully Admiral Harvey will stop for a while and have an actual look at what's taking place around him--instead of hanging out on RedState.com and the Code Pink website, as his description of blogs makes it seem as though hes doing.

The Navy made a change after the Cole attack. It removed from United States Ships the traditional Jack of the United States (50 White Stars on Blue) and replaced it with a Don't Tread on Me regional jack from the early revolution. This was unusual as previously after events such as Pearl Harbor, the Navy stayed with the Union and the traditional and achieved a historically monumental naval victory across two oceans. It seemes to have fought that quite well.

Why go, I wonder, to a flag which implies being a victim, not a victor, and only represents 13 States(not the present 50) and a talking snake? Suspect it was a of use in defense of the Delaware River but where after?

I hope this is a trend-setter with other flags. A bit of heart to heart conversation goes a long way and mitigates a lot of unnecessary speculation and the rocky road of perceptions becoming fact merely by exposure.