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February 2014

Security v. Privacy- Not an Either Or Proposition

Here are my thoughts on the tension between security and privacy.

We have become overly reliant on what are known as technical means for gathering intelligence. We scour the Earth with satellites, the airwaves with radio interceptors, and the World Wide Web with bad PowerPoint presentations (according to Snowden). There are certainly uses for all of those, well except for PowerPoint, that is never justified and possibly both cruel and unusual. But, we need to require that these tools be used in a focused manner and justified by law. Plus, didn't we actually spy on bad guys at one point? As much fun as it must be to pour through the personal emails of diplomats, someone needs to don a tuxedo, valet park an Aston Martin and do some secret agent stuff. I would attach my email address and invite our intelligence community to contact me, but I figure they already have it (just kidding, or am I?)...

There is nothing in the (fictional) international rule book that says you can only have security or privacy, not both. There is also nothing that says sacrificing one enables the other. But, we seem stuck in this endless back and forth where we are told they are mutually exclusive or categorically at odds. We are also forced to endure the endless quoting of Ben Franklin opining "They who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety." This is usually delivered in a tone of moral superiority by those with little understanding of Liberty or Safety or the healthy tension between them, or more importantly why the word "essential" sits in front of Liberty.

Operation: RangerUp!

Veteran (un)employment is a crisis.  There are a number of issues, and while the system is not broken, there are gaps that need to be plugged.  One of those gaps is in getting people practical experience for entrepreneurship.  RangerUp has a unique solution for that, and is looking to give one lucky veteran an unprecedented hands-on opprotunity.  Go check it out and do what you can to help. 


Photo: Cobra Gold Flip

Hires_140212-M-IJ457-051cSouth Korean and U.S. Marines attempt to flip a boat as they conduct amphibious operations drills during Cobra Gold 2014 at Hat Yao in Rayong,Thailand, Feb. 12, 2014. The exercise demonstrates the commitment by the United States and Thailand to a long-standing alliance and regional partnership in the Asia-Pacific region. U.S. Marines assigned to the 3rd Marine Division's 3rd Reconnaissance Battalion, 3rd Marine Expeditionary Force participated in the drills. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Sgt. Matthew Troyer

From Petty Officer to PinUp - Kelli Serio (Someone You Should Know)

For those of you familiar with the great work of Gina Elise and Pinups for Vets, you know she has a bevy of gals who reenact the elegant days of WW2 Pinups.  (Including period costumes, music, etc).


Among their number is Kelli Serio.  Smart and beautiful and fully in keeping with all things "PinUp". The bonus?  She's also a Veteran.

She's posted a biographic piece on Pinups For Vets, chronicling her transition from the US Navy


to a Pin Up, Model and fledgling actress.


What's great about her is that she's down to earth and fully appreciative of the wonderful things that are happening with her new career.  It is clear that she never forgets her military past and Service folks.  She's a wonderful person I've gotten to know a bit over the last few months.

Gentle readers, I present Kelli Serio - From Petty Officer to Pin Up

Photo: Family Evac

Hires_140212-Z-XA030-116eAir Force Staff Sgt. Matthew Wainwright, foreground, and Air Force Master Sgt. Jorge Chavez secure a child into a Humvee during a mission to evacuate a family from a home that lost power and heat as a result of a winter storm in Augusta, Ga., Feb. 12, 2014. Wainwright and Chavez are assigned to the Georgia National Guard's 165th Air Lift Wing. Georgia National Guard photo by Air Force Sgt. Michael Uribe

Some good reads worth your time

Each of these deserve their own post about them; however, there is not enough time.  Let me sum up.

Stormbringer (Sean Linnane) - The Real Afghanistan: A Marine's View

Military Times - Fallen Medic Receives Silver Star

Smithsonian - The True Story of the Monuments Men

The Shreveport Times - Barksdale Mysteries Continue to Raise Questions

Brookings - Afghanistan's Presidential Elections Go Awry

Not from the Duffel Blog - Jerusalem Post - Iranian Admiral: The US can expect heavy losses at sea should it attack Iran

Not necessarily a read but a watch...Nancy Pelosi says, "We did not treat President Bush this way!" - Um, yeah, lady, you treated him worse... - Youtube


Next, pre-order this book on Amazon or Barnes and Noble!


Photo: Navy Deck Work - Gulf of Oman vs. Charlestown, MA

Hires_140209-N-ZN848-222cU.S. sailors hose down the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman in the Gulf of Oman, Feb. 9, 2014. The Truman is deployed to the U.S. 5th Fleet area of responsibility conducting maritime security operations, supporting theater security cooperation efforts and supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.U.S. Navy photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class David Didier


Hires_140205-N-XP344-068U.S. Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Gilbert Caine, left, and Petty Officer 2nd Class Randall King shovel snow off the main hatch cover aboard USS Constitution during a snowstorm in Charlestown, Mass., Feb. 5, 2014. The greater Boston area averages 43.8 inches of snow accumulation each winter, and Constitution crew members are responsible for keeping the decks of 'Old Ironsides' snow and ice-free. U.S. Navy photo by Seaman Victoria Kinney

Photo Essay: French President Pays Respects At Arlington

Is this really the first time that this has happened?

France 1U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel greets French President Francois Hollande at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va., Feb. 11, 2014, before Hollande lays a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknowns and presents the World Ward II Unknown with the French Legion of Honor, France's highest military award. DOD photo by Erin A. Kirk-Cuomo


France 3

French President Francois Hollande lays a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va., Feb. 11, 2014, as U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, second from right, looks on and Army Maj. Gen. Jeffrey S. Buchanan salutes. DOD photo by Erin A. Kirk-Cuomo


France 2

French President Francois Hollande presents the World War II Unknown with the French Legion of Honor, France's highest military award, at the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va., Feb. 11, 2014. U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, who participated in the ceremony, thanked Hollande for the honor. DOD photo by Erin A. Kirk-Cuomo