A Tale of Naval Intrigue. Skip Vogel uses his 20 years of Navy experience to weave an intricate tale of life aboard a major warship in the 1970's.
The aircraft carrier USS UNION is the stage on which Vogel's story plays out. It's the 1970's, and several civilian judiciary systems have taken to allowing convicted criminals to serve in the military instead of serving their time. While this experiment bears fruit with a small percentage of misguided youth, by and large it results in several criminal and psychotic personnel being inducted into the Navy in general and onto the UNION in particular. Against this tide of dishonor stand Admiral Yorel, YN3 Byrd, and some other good sailors, chiefs, and officers who realize that they are in dire straits, and who set out to make it right. Vogel does an excellent job of capturing the leadership challenges involved, and also the frustration of the lead characters as they fight not only a criminal element in the crew, but a bureaucratic Navy that is more concerned with paperwork and political correctness than it is about national defense. Well written and engrossing, this book illustrates the conflict that sometimes ensues between public policy and defending this country. Suggested for Navy veterans, leadership students, and those interested in social justice.
Reviewed by: Rob Ballister (2007)
Skip Vogel's CONSTANT BEARING - DECREASING RANGE: The Collision of Public Policy and National Defense is a compelling character-driven story of intrigue, tragedy, honor, and humor within the U.S. Navy as it was undermined by the questionable efforts of American politicians and social engineers as they attempted to integrate low aptitude personnel and criminals into our naval forces, and the unfortunate consequences that resulted from these policies.