Someone finally says it in print re CG budget
Last Post 17 Jan 2013 07:19 AM by Old Guard2. 27 Replies.
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KDUser is Offline
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12 Jan 2013 09:13 AM
    scoutdad25619User is Offline
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    12 Jan 2013 09:39 AM
    Its no different than local governments cutting money to the fire department. They expect the fire service (like the Coast Guard) to continually do more with less, that is until something really bad happens. Then people ask "why didn't they do more?". Then funding increases for a little while, the politicians get their pictures taken with us, then things slowly return to normal. Unfortunately for us, we're our own worst enemy. We manage to do whatever duty we need to, with the small amount of funding that comes our way, regardless of the amount. "They" see our ability to complete the mission regardless and figure we are an easy target for budget cuts. After all, we get the job done no matter what. Not fulfilling a mission or two would satisfy that, but it's not in our nature. We won't allow someone to suffer or worse just to prove a point.

    Getting the policy makers to understand is next to impossible, unless it affects them directly. The people who decide how we're to operate have no clue on how we operate (or not enough of them understand it to make a difference), therefore our budgets get sacrificed for something that benefits a special interest ensuring votes for said elected official.

    I applaud the Baltimore Sun for publishing their position. I wish others would go on record saying the same.

    The solution is simple: get the policy makers to see what's important. Your odds of winning the lottery, getting hit by lightining and being eaten by a shark in the same day are better.

    (I'm putting my soapbox away now...) 
    DUTY IS DOING IT, PRIDE IS WEARING IT, TRADITION IS LIVING IT. “DUTY FIRST” – CHIEF EDMUND ENWRIGHT, CHICAGO F.D. (RETIRED)
    magmamUser is Offline
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    12 Jan 2013 09:57 AM
    Do you think moving the CG from the dept of defense has hurt its mission?
    scoutdad25619User is Offline
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    12 Jan 2013 10:42 AM
    I don't believe the CG was ever part of the DoD. In my lifetime it's been part of the Dept. of Transportation & DHS. One of those more familliar could clarify, but I think that the law enforcement aspect of the CG's duty keeps it from being part of DoD. That being said, the budget SHOULD be treated as a part of the military, because of the obvious reason - THE USCG IS PART OF THE MILITARY. It's a very special branch as we know, not being combat oriented like the Navy for example, but willing to go into combat to preserve lives - and our way of life.
    I know, I'm preachin' to the chior here... It seems to me the CG has always been an afterthought, and I never understood why...
    DUTY IS DOING IT, PRIDE IS WEARING IT, TRADITION IS LIVING IT. “DUTY FIRST” – CHIEF EDMUND ENWRIGHT, CHICAGO F.D. (RETIRED)
    magmamUser is Offline
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    12 Jan 2013 10:45 AM
    thanks for clarifying... I didn't realize it had been under the DOT!
    magmamUser is Offline
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    12 Jan 2013 10:48 AM
    Here is another link I had posted about a month ago dealing with the same subject http://newswatch.nationalgeographic...-deserve-2
    scoutdad25619User is Offline
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    12 Jan 2013 11:03 AM
    I've read that one. The author is definiely a friend of the USCG. His book painted the service in a very positive light. But while the public (who's aware of our presence) is behind us, the folks who hold the purse strings don't seem to care. I can even understand a member of Congress who's state doesn't have regular contact with the service to not care (I don't agree, but I get it), but don't the majority of people in the US live close to the oceans, Great Lakes or major rivers? Logic (logic - there's an oxymoron in government, huh?) would tell you that since the majority of people live in an area that is potentially serviced by the USCG, the majority of representatives & senators would be more vocal in their support of the service and not only speak it, but show it with their votes.

    I've only been directly involved with the CG through the Auxiliary a short time, but from what I've seen through my involvement, and what I saw growing up on the southern shore of Lake Michigan - seeing the CG in action many times, this service is full of amazing people who deserve the 100% support of the US government, because they give 100% to the people of this country every day. Not the "lick and a promise" its been getting for far too long.
    DUTY IS DOING IT, PRIDE IS WEARING IT, TRADITION IS LIVING IT. “DUTY FIRST” – CHIEF EDMUND ENWRIGHT, CHICAGO F.D. (RETIRED)
    magmamUser is Offline
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    12 Jan 2013 11:16 AM
    the only time the local representatives seem to get involved [too little too late] is when they announce a base closing. Imagine the press if the CG had been unable to provide its services when they were looking for JFK jrs plane when it went down?? I live in NJ with thousands of boaters and home to our training center in Cape May. 30minutes from NY harbor an 10min from the Arthur Kill which separates NJ and Staten Island and is home to major refineries. I am within 15 min of port Newark one of the major shipping and receiving ports on the east coast-but even I was ignorant about the service provided by the USCG until my son joined!
    scoutdad25619User is Offline
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    13 Jan 2013 12:02 PM
    The cool thing about the CG is they do the work without fanfare. It speaks volumes about the people in the service. But it works aganst them also. People have no idea what's going on in the fleet or the boat & air stations on any given day. If they don't hear about it, it didn't happen. The other services are masters at marketing their mission (and congress hears about the classified stuff that we don't). Maybe the CG needs to start bragging on themselves a little. It's not the nature of the membership, but there is alot to be proud of here. The Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines show their pride (and they should) daily in the media. Why don't we? True we're out there, be it the active & reserve components on the cutters, boats and aircraft, or the auxiliary teaching RBS or helping with an SAR mission, but the only people who see us are the folks along the water, or the maritime community. I'm not an advertising person, but a little marketing couldn't hurt.

    DUTY IS DOING IT, PRIDE IS WEARING IT, TRADITION IS LIVING IT. “DUTY FIRST” – CHIEF EDMUND ENWRIGHT, CHICAGO F.D. (RETIRED)
    KDUser is Offline
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    13 Jan 2013 07:17 PM
    I am a marketing person, and the CG needs a new ad agency, badly.
    CoochUser is Offline
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    13 Jan 2013 07:30 PM
    You would laugh at our advertising budget. It's nearly nonexistent.
    You can meet the standard, or you can set the standard. It's your choice.
    scoutdad25619User is Offline
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    14 Jan 2013 01:42 PM
    Honestly nothing would suprise me. I've been involved in the fire service for a long time, and we see the same thing. We don't advsertise, do what we do without expecting any real fanfare and that's that. The bean counters just see million dollar rigs and guys sitting around waiting for something to do. That is, until it's time to go to work... Then they like us for awhile. Next thing ya know, it's budget time. The first department that has to cut? You guessed it, the fire department. I see so many similarities between the fire service and the CG it's uncanny.

    The police, on the other hand, are out there "doing it". They're high visibility, and they make money for the town. Who do you think comes out on top?
    The fire service is suffering in the same way the CG is, and it's for the same reasons. We're our own worst enemies.
    DUTY IS DOING IT, PRIDE IS WEARING IT, TRADITION IS LIVING IT. “DUTY FIRST” – CHIEF EDMUND ENWRIGHT, CHICAGO F.D. (RETIRED)
    CoochUser is Offline
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    14 Jan 2013 02:04 PM
    It's a little different for us though. We don't advertise because it isn't necessary. We have more applicants than we know what to do with. People are lined up out the door and wait close to two years to join. Advertising would be a waste of money in some senses.

    Even if our budget is cut down from today's levels, it is still a whole lot more than we had when I first joined. The transition from department of transportation to department of homeland security came with a lot of funds. Even if we trim it back, we are still in good shape. We can always find unnecessary expenses to help accommodate the cuts.
    You can meet the standard, or you can set the standard. It's your choice.
    magmamUser is Offline
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    14 Jan 2013 02:33 PM
    I would suggest that the advertisement would or should really be spent on public relations....Cooch is right in that there are many more applicants then positions but with some positive PR and enlightenment in the public sector maybe we could get some vocal support from taxpayers who could relay their concerns to their representatives in congress. Coastal/resort communites, boaters, base communities, Great Lakes areas...these are areas I would target for support
    scoutdad25619User is Offline
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    14 Jan 2013 06:40 PM
    Chief, I understand what you're saying and I don't question your expertise, I just think it's silly that the service sees the budget cuts that they are, loosing equipment that would make your jobs easier/safer. You guys are going into harms way on a regular basis, the equipment you use should be as good as what the other services are getting. Simply put, if the Navy is getting (x) new boats, or whatever equipment they ask for, you should get a proportional amount of stuff as well.

    I know...Perfect world.

    Magmam nailed it with regards to where to spend some PR money. Give people an opportunity to see what the USCG is really about.

    That's just me.
    DUTY IS DOING IT, PRIDE IS WEARING IT, TRADITION IS LIVING IT. “DUTY FIRST” – CHIEF EDMUND ENWRIGHT, CHICAGO F.D. (RETIRED)
    CoochUser is Offline
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    14 Jan 2013 07:01 PM
    For now at least, we are just cutting back on unnecessary expenses. Travel budgets have been limited to mission essential travel only. That will save some money. The detailers are trying to keep people in a geographical area if they so choose. That will save some money as well. Times are tough, but I'm proud of the way we are preparing for the cuts instead of having them come as a shock to the system. You're right though, we need new ships, badly. I'm sure the commandant is fighting that battle every day.
    You can meet the standard, or you can set the standard. It's your choice.
    scoutdad25619User is Offline
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    14 Jan 2013 07:39 PM
    The job will get done in spite of the bean counters!
    S/P!!!
    DUTY IS DOING IT, PRIDE IS WEARING IT, TRADITION IS LIVING IT. “DUTY FIRST” – CHIEF EDMUND ENWRIGHT, CHICAGO F.D. (RETIRED)
    ClaytonRUser is Offline
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    15 Jan 2013 01:38 AM
    Posted By scoutdad25619 on 14 Jan 2013 02:42 PM
    The police, on the other hand, are out there "doing it". They're high visibility, and they make money for the town. Who do you think comes out on top? 


    Not looking to start a PD vs FD argument, but I think this will differ anywhere you go. My county's FD just got raises and new equipment(much needed, don't get me wrong), while my SO is working with outdated equipment and taking pay cuts...everyone is hurting, one way or another.

    But I agree...the persons who sign the checks ought to do some real learning about what those checks are paying for, and realize that those checks could stand to be a little(a lot) bigger.
    scoutdad25619User is Offline
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    15 Jan 2013 09:07 AM
    Clayton, you're not gonna start an arguement. Like you said, everyone's hurting. My dispatch office works with PD's that are so short staffed that on one of the dept's even the chief has to work outside his normal schedule - on shift as the watch commander. Cars falling apart..you know the drill. But the guys still manage to get the job done. My point was that the cops are generally better than the firefighters at getting $$. The bean counters have it all wrong. Spend money on flower-pots, not on fire trucks (or whatever)...On up to the federal government and they're doing the same thing. The "Big 4" of the armed forces are high visibility. We see them on the news every day. And God Bless them, they're doing great work wherever they are. They deserve what they get. The USCG is in the shadows, also doing great work, but nobody knows it. Anonymity is a good thing most of the time - except when it's budget time.
    It is what it is, the culture of elected government right now.
    DUTY IS DOING IT, PRIDE IS WEARING IT, TRADITION IS LIVING IT. “DUTY FIRST” – CHIEF EDMUND ENWRIGHT, CHICAGO F.D. (RETIRED)
    KDUser is Offline
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    15 Jan 2013 11:11 AM
    I see it as part of the problem when the job *always* gets done despite the deficiencies. Because it doesn't really--how much more could have been done,better, with the vessels that broke down or had to turn back on the way to Haiti?
    How much gets spent staffing and repairing 378s that are not accomplishing their missions because of broken evaps and engine fires?

    Part of the problem as well with DHS missions is the prevention and interdiction part....because the public does not see crimes *not* committed, acts of terror *not* completed. That is a true paradoxical difficulty.

    DH is tasked with courts and judicial security in our county. The safer he makes things, the fewer incidents occur that are newsworthy. Fewer incidents = less press, which = less public perception of risk. Which makes it easier to say, Nothing ever happens here, maybe we don't need (fill in the blank) after all.

    I shall rephrase: the CG doesn't need a new ad agency, it needs a serious lobbyist. Or advocate, if 'lobbyist' offends.
    magmamUser is Offline
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    15 Jan 2013 01:51 PM
    KD-I agree ith your last line BUT the best lobbyists would be taxpayers and voters....and without them knowing the risks and benefits support is not there. A lobbyist has something to barter...campaign$, something. Only taxpayers can really act as unpaid lobbyists hopefully willing to take on a cause.
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    16 Jan 2013 02:38 PM
    Posted By magmam on 14 Jan 2013 03:33 PM
    I would suggest that the advertisement would or should really be spent on public relations....Cooch is right in that there are many more applicants then positions but with some positive PR and enlightenment in the public sector maybe we could get some vocal support from taxpayers who could relay their concerns to their representatives in congress. 
    How much has the Weather Channel's Coast Guard shows helped with applicants?

    Do you think it is doing anything to enlighten the public sector?
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    16 Jan 2013 05:02 PM
    Anything that paints the service in a good light can do nothing but help, but CG Alaska is really big in avation and I have to believe (Kodiak vet's chime in here) there's more going on in 17 than Jayhawk medivac calls... CG Florida seems to balance avation and the boat forces pretty well, but what about the blue-water fleet, the Grate Lakes, the inland fleet... That's the visible end of the service - OS, IS, environmental protection, HITRON...
    DUTY IS DOING IT, PRIDE IS WEARING IT, TRADITION IS LIVING IT. “DUTY FIRST” – CHIEF EDMUND ENWRIGHT, CHICAGO F.D. (RETIRED)
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    16 Jan 2013 05:07 PM
    I would think that any postitive exposure is good for theCG and helps to educate te public. Truth be told the Weather Channel is so far up my channel line up I rarely see the show
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    16 Jan 2013 06:07 PM
    My kid got me hooked. It's pretty good TV. You guys who do it every day may think different. I haven't seen ANYTHING negative on it.
    DUTY IS DOING IT, PRIDE IS WEARING IT, TRADITION IS LIVING IT. “DUTY FIRST” – CHIEF EDMUND ENWRIGHT, CHICAGO F.D. (RETIRED)
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    16 Jan 2013 06:37 PM
    I stopped watching once I realized it was all about aviation. It only furthers the stereotype that the CG is nothing but pilots and rescue swimmers. In reality, they are only a small portion of our service, but they seem to get all the accolades.
    You can meet the standard, or you can set the standard. It's your choice.
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    16 Jan 2013 06:43 PM
    I can understand that. I don't watch fire programs. Same thing, I suppose. I'm new to the Aux, it's an interest, and I understand there's more to the USCG than aviation. But I don't live it everyday; makes a huge difference.
    The Florida show does do a pretty good balance, but Alaska definitely does nothing for the surface forces. My son doesnt like the Alaska program. He's a boat guy. But if the programs help the service...
    DUTY IS DOING IT, PRIDE IS WEARING IT, TRADITION IS LIVING IT. “DUTY FIRST” – CHIEF EDMUND ENWRIGHT, CHICAGO F.D. (RETIRED)
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    17 Jan 2013 07:19 AM
    I watched it the first season. It was good... I watched it more to see Kodiak. I miss that stupid island. I haven't watched any more of it because the CG isn't ALL aviation. I haven't watched the Florida one because I'm not interested in Florida. LOL I also DESPISE the name of the show. Coast Guard - Alaska, Coast Guard - Florida... It should be United States Coast Guard in Alaska/Florida. To say Coast Guard - Alaska it sounds to me more like a state militia then a national force. Gee, why do people think the CG never leaves the US? Because shows like this call it by a state name and just the way they say it, I don't know what it is, sounds more like a state run agency, like Alaska State Troopers. So I watched it for a while, then lost 100% interest in it. Well 98% interest... I might stop on the channel if I see it is on, I never record it and I never watch a complete episode.
    Sector NY, Staten Island


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