A True Reagan: Jhaqueil Reagan

I’ve held between 35 and 40 jobs in my life. I started working when I was 14 and have maintained a job steadily (with the exception of a semester in college and six weeks during a move to another state) since then. Most of my life, I’ve had two or three jobs at once. Only by joining the Navy have I been able to focus on one career.

When I read the story of Jhaqueil Reagan of Indianapolis, Indiana, I knew the details before I reached the end. I’ve been blessed by a couple of Art Bouviers (from the restaurant Papa Roux) like Jhaq has. These are great Americans. We work in this country.

On a related topic, I serve with a Navy civilian who started interviewing for weekend retail jobs. If the furloughs happen (due to sequestration), she will not be able to weather the 20% pay cut. And she must sell clothes to make ends meet.

Sequestration Fallout

At work, we’ve spent dozens of hours preparing for the dreaded s-word, sequestration. Truly, we have war-gamed it, mapping out plans for all sorts of contingencies. The irony, if I can apply irony to naval affairs, is we would have saved a lot of money (in not planning for four-five different outcomes) if we were told our direction. This would have enabled us to plan for one future, rather than hedging bets and trying to position our program properly in an uncertain destiny. We have run drills taking all sorts of percentage cuts. Would not that percentage cut have been smaller if we had known it months ago? We would have then saved the money that went into trying to plan for a variety of outcomes.

Should sequestration occur, the following will also happen: The deployments of 10 destroyers will be cancelled, including seven tasked with missile defense. Four aircraft-carrier air wings will be “shut down.” The Navy will “Reduce Investment in ships, aircraft, weapons, R&D” by $7.75 billion. Should a crisis break out somewhere in the world in 2013, only one aircraft carrier strike group will be available for deployment.