Monday, September 3, 2018

The miracle of the USS Yorktown

From a different era.  Donald McClarey has the lowdown.  This was one of millions of stories in the history of the United States and what made it great.  The Japanese were sure we'd be down one carrier when they showed up at Midway.  Japan's incorrect assessment of America's work ethic cost them a crucial battle that ended up being the turning point of the Pacific War.

Today, there is no such thing as that level of work ethic.  When working as a department manager at a major healthcare company some years ago, a fellow manager was standing by a window looking forlorn.  I came up to him and asked what was wrong.  He pointed to the parking lot.  One of his team members was heading for his car.  It was 3:00 PM, and nowhere near lunch or any such thing.  The manager explained that the fellow merely emailed him a brief message: 3:00 O'Clock, time to go!   And off he went.  He was disciplined, but the company made it clear that fear of lawsuits made terminating anyone nearly impossible.  Unfortunately, the young man was not alone, as close to 50% of the employees were constantly getting in trouble for goofing off, not working, violating company policy. And that company was hardly alone.

A labor day reflection for a nation that no longer values labor.  But if we remember the better age, we might, for the sake of our posterity, be able to recapture the best of that age.

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