Truly Nutty People in Powerful Positions -- Your Stories

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    May 02, 2010 2:52 PM GMT
    OK, so another thread made me remember nutty US Army Generals I encountered during my career. I'll tell one to get started, then add your own personal experiences with wackos in positions of authority & importance, and don't omit the politicians. Do you ever wonder how they got there? Does lunacy impart certain extra talents & gifts, or do others just concede to them out of fear, confusion & surprise?

    It's 1983, and I'm at Fort Lewis, Washington, near Tacoma, to conduct 6 weeks of summer field training with Army college-level ROTC cadets. The ROTC Commander for the West Coast States region is a Brigadier General (1 star), who just took over a couple of months before.

    So it's a few days into our training and our Cadet Company of about 150 is out in the woods, when suddenly we faintly hear Wagner's Ride of the Valkyries. I'd already been in uniform 14 years at that point, and hearing Wagner in the woods was not your everyday occurrence.

    It gets closer & closer, louder & louder, and suddenly the General's private Ford Bronco (POV), painted in Army OD like our combat vehicles, bursts into the clearing where we were. On its roof are mounted 2 huge speaker cones, like giant trumpets. The General jumped out while his driver silenced the deafening music.

    I and the other Tactical Officers, all Captains & Majors, were dumbstruck. We all wanted to giggle & laugh, but we knew better. In the US Army, a General Officer is as close to God-on-Earth as human beings can aspire.

    The General harangued us and the Cadets for a few minutes, saying nothing of significance or relevance to our training, then jumped back into his Bronco and took off, this time to the blaring theme music from the movie "Patton." Patton, for gawd's sake! Is that who he thought he was? The remaining 6 weeks were equally crazy.

    Your stories?



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    May 02, 2010 3:17 PM GMT
    When I worked for an engineering company, I had a boss with a Law Degree from Harvard, and a Engineering Degree from M.I.T.




    Yet he couldn't pour piss out of a boot if you painted an arrow saying 'directions on the sole!"


    Example :
    He asked me what the elevation was of the local river. I said "250 feet above sea level."
    Him:"No, not here. Downstream about 1/2 mile."
    I looked at him and said "250feet"
    Him:"I thought it would be deeper..."
    Me: "It IS deeper, dumbass! But the SURFACE ELEVATION is 250 feet above sea level from one set of locks to the other! Christ, how did you get an engineering degree???"
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    May 02, 2010 5:04 PM GMT
    I think thats the way its suppose to be icon_lol.gif Its unfortunate, but GOD's plan 4 us will prevail in the endicon_exclaim.gificon_twisted.gif
  • mcwclewis

    Posts: 1701

    May 02, 2010 5:13 PM GMT
    My kitchen manager at one of my jobs is a complete moron. Here are some of his past quotes

    "What, do you think I was born tomorrow?"

    "Can someone get me a drink? I'm STARVING!"

    "Isn't a cucumber just a marinated pickle?"


    One day, Taylor Swift came on the radio....
    Me: "Isn't she like, 15?"
    Him: "Nah she's like 19.................... she used to be 15, though."


    Instead of saying marmalade, he says "mal-a-mard"


    My other boss, the actual owner... well, for one thing, he hired the guy above.
    In our menu it says the building is an old "flower mill"
    The marquis out front has said, in the past, "Spaghetti and Maetballs" "Befe Raviolli" "All you can eat carb legs".... I could go on... but you get the picture.


    It's like you have to be stupid to get anywhere in life.
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    May 02, 2010 6:20 PM GMT
    Another Army story, also related to General Patton, whose movie theme song I mentioned above.

    It was the winter of 1971 at Fort Knox, Kentucky. For the second year in a row we had an incredibly bad cold snap, temps into the teens, and I'm living out in the field under canvas and freezing.

    The famous general Patton's son, now a Brigadier General ( 1-star) had just become the Deputy Commandant of the US Army Armor School at Fort Knox. The story of my participating in his initial briefing is another crazy epidosde I may tell here. But right now I'm a Motor Sergeant supporting a training exercise some 10 miles north of the main post.

    Suddenly General Patton's jeep shows up one morning. It doesn't even have the canvas top up, totally open. He's wearing a fur-trimmed Arctic parka with hood, but his driver, like the rest of us, is just wearing a standard-issue cotton field jacket for that geographical region, with whatever he can layer underneath it, and he looks as frozen as we all do. I pity him.

    General Patton stomps around, yelling at everyone, and then he enters the mess tent.

    "What are you serving for breakfast?" he shouts at a cook.

    "Well, it oughta be eggs, General," answers the cook defiantly. "But it's too cold to heat the griddle. Look..."

    And the cook threw an egg down on the field griddle, and it just laid there, the surface too cold to make anything happen. To this day I remember the courage of that lowly cook standing up to this famous General. He remains my idea of the independent, brave, and unintimidated citizen-soldier, the very spirit of our nation, as unfazed by a pompous General as I would expect him to be by our enemies.

    "Good training!" barked General Patton, as he turned on his heels and went off to terrorize other soldiers. Well, ya know, that's not my concept of leadership. I only got to be a Colonel, the rank just below Patton's at that time before my health failed me. But if I had witnessed his behavior as his superior I would have relieved him on the spot.

    With leadership comes responsibility, not personal indulgence. I was trained that you are given a privileged position for the benefit of the organization and those in it, but never for yourself. When you pamper & gratify yourself, you are little better than a thief. That was once the ethic of the US Officer Corps; I can't say what it is today.
  • Celticmusl

    Posts: 4330

    May 02, 2010 6:34 PM GMT
    mr_peanut.png
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    May 02, 2010 8:57 PM GMT
    Celticmusl saidmr_peanut.png

    Yes, but what is your story? You met Mr. Peanut?
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    May 02, 2010 9:22 PM GMT
    Celticmusl saidmr_peanut.png
    Jimmy Carter was stupid?
    Oh wait, he was a Pres. Of course he was stupid. icon_razz.gif
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    May 02, 2010 9:26 PM GMT
    Margaret Thatcher. Need I say more?
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    May 02, 2010 9:28 PM GMT
    paulflexes said
    Celticmusl saidmr_peanut.png
    Jimmy Carter was stupid?
    Oh wait, he was a Pres. Of course he was stupid. icon_razz.gif

    No one was talking about stupid. Well, until you opened your mouth.

    What a lame attempt at Republican propaganda. What the HELL does Jimmy Carter have to do with this topic? Do go back, try to read it slowly, and see it you can understand what I wrote. And you call OTHERS stupid??? icon_rolleyes.gif
  • rnch

    Posts: 11524

    May 02, 2010 9:29 PM GMT
    george herbert walker bush, who answered to a "higher authority", who said on tv that he never made one mistake in his 8 years as President. icon_rolleyes.gif
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    May 02, 2010 9:31 PM GMT
    Red_Vespa said
    paulflexes said
    Celticmusl saidmr_peanut.png
    Jimmy Carter was stupid?
    Oh wait, he was a Pres. Of course he was stupid. icon_razz.gif

    No one was talking about stupid. Well, until you opened your mouth.

    What a lame attempt at Republican propaganda. What the HELL does Jimmy Carter have to do with this topic? Do go back, try to read it slowly, and see it you can understand what I wrote. And you call OTHERS stupid??? icon_rolleyes.gif
    Well ain't you just on the rag today.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    May 02, 2010 9:32 PM GMT
    rnch saidgeorge herbert walker bush, who answered to a "higher authority", who said on tv that he never made one mistake in his 8 years as President. icon_rolleyes.gif

    A world-class wacko, I agree. But what I asked was:

    ",,,add your own personal experiences with wackos in positions of authority & importance..."
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    May 02, 2010 9:56 PM GMT
    I was with the owner of the company I work for and he was buying a $300 pair of cufflinks. While pulling out his Centurion (black) American Express card, he asked if they could ship them to him because "that would save on sales tax right?"
  • Celticmusl

    Posts: 4330

    May 02, 2010 9:58 PM GMT
    Red_Vespa said
    Celticmusl saidmr_peanut.png

    Yes, but what is your story? You met Mr. Peanut?



    Let's just say that if this legume ever asks if you like peanut butter on your bread, just say "No"!
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    May 02, 2010 11:35 PM GMT
    Red Vespa:

    re: Patton, I saw the movie with George C. Scott, and he came across as a nut and a egomaniac who seemed to think World War II was nothing more than a convenient vehicle to show off his supposed brilliance. Sounds like his son was much the same way. Am I correct, or were either one of them better than that?
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    May 02, 2010 11:46 PM GMT
    I once worked in New Orleans for a woman that was in a position of power and she was also a coke whore. When ANY OTHER WOMEN would get near her, or if she percieved them as a threat, you would inevitably start hearing rumours about them. The funniest of which was a rumor once that this certain woman "liked to take it in the ass," which if you knew her, made a complete fool out of her, but the statement alone would even make the most serious person laugh.

    So, her MO was to humiliate those who would attempt taking any power away from her, which I guess is also why she used cocaine.

    Justifying your existence can get ugly. LOL
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    May 03, 2010 12:50 AM GMT
    jdwhiskey25 saidI was with the owner of the company I work for and he was buying a $300 pair of cufflinks. While pulling out his Centurion (black) American Express card, he asked if they could ship them to him because "that would save on sales tax right?"

    That is indeed tacky. One of my pairs of cufflinks was custom made for me, from the buttons off my Army Officer's tunic (jacket), as a memento for me. They're sorta visible in my RJ main photo. Their value is way over $300, because of the cost to make them, though their intrinsic value is negligible, just simple buttons.

    A gentleman does not try to beat the tax on things he buys. That diminishes him. I judge your boss to be a classless character. Money alone does not a gentleman make.
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    May 03, 2010 12:51 AM GMT
    xuaerb saidJustifying your existence can get ugly. LOL

    Do you know what became of her?