Stuff on our warships was maintained neurotically and kept clean enough that you could eat your meals off any surface you pleased, or at least that was the goal: If a metal surface wasn't covered with tacky, drying paint, that's because it was due to be scraped and painted tomorrow. In light of this, I find the following article a little disturbing:
The Balisle commission does warn of the dangers of an “it’s not my problem” ethos in the surface force, which it said will make the Navy’s troubles, from Aegis to corrosion, all the more difficult to fix:
“From the most senior officers to the most junior petty officer, the culture reveals itself in personal attitudes ranging from resignation to frustration to toleration. The downward spiral of the culture is seen throughout the ship, in the longstanding acceptance of poor housekeeping, preservation and corrosion control. Over time, the ignored standard now becomes the norm. Sailors watching their commanding officer, department head, division officer and chief petty officer step over running rust, peeling non-skid or severe structure damage long enough associate this activity as the standard.”
This sounds more like the horror stories I've heard about the post-Vietnam Navy of the Carter years than it does the branch of service to which Tom Clancy wrote loopy little love notes all through the '80s and '90s.
BONUS!: Old NFO offered his thoughts on the same readiness report a couple weeks back.
(H/T to Bob at The Drawn Cutlass.)