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Prime Directive Federation
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Steve Cole
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2011 2:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There are historical cases for young O6 and O7 and even O8 people, none of which really apply to 2011 USA, but perhaps with a stretch one might apply to SFU.

The times involved a huge expansion of the military for a major multi-year war. Take the civil war (going from an army under 20,000 to a total military north and south over 1.5 million. Take WW2, when similar things happened.

Adolf Galland made Major General (the Germans did not have a one-star Brigadier) at the age of 30, but then, he was a fighter ace and fighters were a fairly new thing in the overall scheme of things.

Lots of people made general at or before 30 during the American Civil War, and zillions made colonel. When Texas created itself, they grabbed a dozen people with some (or in some cases no) military experience and made them colonels.

One could argue that the fairly small Star Fleet establishment in Y170 compared to the massive Star Fleet in Y180 would mean more than a few hot shot officers made O5 (the rank for most ship captains) before they were 30 and at least some made O6 (commander of a major warship, CC or better).
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aramis
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2011 7:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Question, SVC...

Shouldn't most CL & CA skippers be O6's prior to 170 as well?

(At present, almost all USN cruiser CO's are O6; many destroyer CO's are O5, but some are O6. Most CVA's are also technically O6 CO, but have the O7 group CO on board.)

I can understand the O6's being put on the newer CC's... tho the Flagship's Captain traditionally was a junior captain, not a senior one, as the Flag Officer can provide a lot of guidance.
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Steve Cole
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2011 2:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The USN doens't have that many cruisers, and most destroyer skippers are O5s. (The few O6s got their promotion orders after a year in command.)

It's not Y170 that sees young captains, but Y180. In Y170, you still have the old farts, senior O6s in cruisers and junior O6s on frigates.

More ships drives the need for more skippers (and a LOT more new ships means a lot more skippers needed), which drives the ranks down to 05 (senior O4s on frigates) and drives up the speed of promotion.

Remember that when the American Civil War began, regular army captains and majors were being promoted directly to brigadier general and major general before the first shots were fired. When Lincoln called for 300,000 volunteers, do the math on how many brand new generals you need (assuming at least one brigadier per 5,000 and at least one major general per 15,000). They came out of thin air, mostly. And it did not stop. When they decided that the Union had to do something about having a real cavalry arm, they found the some captains who were real ripsnorters and promoted them directly to brigade command as colonels. (Custer among them, and he did pretty well in the civil war: "Come on, you wolverines!")

Back when I was in ROTC, we were told that we'd been majors in 4.5 years. When I graduated, the war was over, making captain in 4 years was not guaranteed, and thousands of cadets were sent home without getting commissions at all (including me) and thousand more became 2nd lieutenants for 90 days and then became civilians.
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aramis
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 03, 2011 8:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A good GM you might consider is a rough timeline giving base classes (CA, BC, DD/SC, etc) and the CO grade range by year for at least the Feds and Klingons.
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lincolnlog
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 11:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sgt_G wrote:
In theory, you can have a child prodigy get his degree by age 18 and then get a direct commision via OTS / OCS. That shaves off three years, and it is legal to promote from 2LT to 1LT in 18 months vice 24. Ergo, the absolute youngest a person in modern-day US military can theoretically make O-6 is age 30-1/2 years.


I believe by law, one must be 21 to receive a commission in the US armed forces. So the child proidigy age redction wouldn't work.

But agreed the appointed to Captain before you even officially graduate the academy was just pushing things too far. The original character of Capn K was modelled from Captain Horatio Hornblower's character. As you know Hornblower was a child prodigy so to speak. But he was still allowed to collect experience and develop as an officer before being given a command of his own.

An 06 in command of a frigate in the current US Navy would most likely also wear a second hat, such as Squadron Commander. The Navy has a TDA (table of distribution and allowances) just as the Army does (MTO&E) which dictates what ranks are allowable for various command positions.

The TDA or TO&E normally dicatates the minimum/maximum rank that the holder of the position may be. Normally command slots are given to people in the maximum grade. Since there is a list of officers in line for command slots, more than there are hulls.
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Steve Cole
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 5:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

When comparing star fleet to the USA, you need to get the time periods matching.

Normal star fleet = 2011 USA, ok, more or less.

General war star fleet = 1944 USA, more or less.

Kirk making captain as fast as he did is pure fiction, but makes a rollicking good story. If gamers want to do that, let them.
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Ravenhull
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 10:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the key is that if you decide to play fast and loose with promotions and commands, I'm pretty sure that Steve isn't gonna come visit your gaming session with a bat... fairly sure... Wink
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leathernsteel
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2011 12:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

When considering age, also consider different species in the federation. 21 years old on Earth ain't the same as 21 years old on Vulcan, or the Andorian home world for that matter. A Vulcan may be mature enough to serve as a zero at age 16, perhaps due to their rapid maturity. Just a thought.
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Dal Downing
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2011 2:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The folowing are a few names I picked up poking around.

Christian, David A. - 2nd LT at age 19 (Vietnam)

Hackworth, Dave - field promotion to Captain at the age of 20. (Korea)

Inouye, Dan - field commission to Captain at the age of 20. (WWII)

Bush, George H W - LTJG at 19, youngest pilot in WWII.

Hamilton, Alexander - appt captain, Continental Army, 14 Mar 1776 - age 19.

MacArthur, Arthur - appt lieutenant, 4 Aug 1862 - age 18.

Murphy, Audie - field commission 1944 - age 20.

Sabin, Albert - appt lieutenant 19 Feb 1862 - age 19.

Wilkinson, James - appt captain, Continental Army, Mar 1776 - age 19.

Joseph Burger, Pvt 2nd Minnesota Infantry, won the MoH at age 15 and was immediately given a battlefield commisison to Captain (1863).

Arthur MacArthur Jr. - 1st Lt. 24th Wisconsin (1862) age 17 - Awarded MOH for action at Missionary Ridge 11/24/1863 age 18 - Major (1864) age 18 - Brevet Colonel (1865) age 19.

To be honest none of these offucers above or any such officer a player campaign may generate would overly concern me. Now a non discript civilian who has the Acces Codes to the Ships Weapon Locker, Captians Ready Room, a Omega Code for your ship and, a order autherozation code from the Admiral in charge of the 5th Fleet, that would concern me.
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terryoc
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2011 7:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
When considering age, also consider different species in the federation. 21 years old on Earth ain't the same as 21 years old on Vulcan, or the Andorian home world for that matter. A Vulcan may be mature enough to serve as a zero at age 16, perhaps due to their rapid maturity. Just a thought.


I think Vulcans take longer to mature because they live longer (and being super intelligent, have more maturing to do).

Klingons, on the other hand, mature early and die young. A sixteen year old would be beginning his military service.
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Mr_Tricorder
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2011 1:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I thought it was established (though I don't remember when or where) that Vulcans mature at about the same rate that humans do. It simply takes twice as long for the effects of old age to take its toll on their bodies.

As for Klingons maturing more quickly and dying young, I think that has more to do with their culture than their anatomy. Here on earth 16 used to be (and still is in some cultures) considered adulthood. Also, in TOS we were never really given an opportunity to see any "Klingon elders", but later on in Trek canon it's pretty well established that they can live as long, if not longer, than humans.
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Jean
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2011 3:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Klingon aging is in the PD20M core rulebook.

1-9 is a child (human 1-11)
10-13 is young adult (human 12-15)
14-29 is adult (human 16-39)
30-44 is middle age (human 40-59)
45-59 is old (human 60-79)
60+ is venerable (human 80+)

Vulcan (I believe) doubles the numbers for humans.
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lincolnlog
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2011 8:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Steve Cole wrote:
When comparing star fleet to the USA, you need to get the time periods matching.

Normal star fleet = 2011 USA, ok, more or less.

General war star fleet = 1944 USA, more or less.

Kirk making captain as fast as he did is pure fiction, but makes a rollicking good story. If gamers want to do that, let them.


I agree it does make a rollicking good story. I think the original story behind Kirk in the TOS is also plausible. Although I enjoyed the last movie, I found appointing a cadet as a major starship commander, not so plausible. I'm still looking forward to the next movie, even though I felt that was to incongruous with TOS.

As far as gaming goes, yes, we as the players need to put our own spin on it. If we were all playing the exact same game, what would be the point?

And in the post with all of the young comissioned officers, the US has always broken it's own policies during time of crisis, but as it has been mentioned earlier and in Steve's post, 2011 versus 1944 = different situations. Prior to WWII a college degree was not required for commissioning. Many state National Guards are still commissioning High School grads with college defferment, then the newly commissioned officers have so many years to achieve a degree.
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Carthaginian
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2011 4:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

lincolnlog wrote:
Many state National Guards are still commissioning High School grads with college defferment, then the newly commissioned officers have so many years to achieve a degree.


Though following this path, the officer in question 1.) cannot be promoted beyond O-2 [no exceptions] until degree completion and 2.) will immediately revert to enlisted if they fail to obtain a degree in 4 years [barring deployments].

The fastest climbers I met in the Guard were the private 'military academy' grads- they are commissioned under the same basic rules, but already had the equivalent of an associate's degree. One year of overloaded semesters would allow them to complete their degree obligation and continue to be promoted... and a few made O-3 (via waver) by their 4th year.
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Mr_Tricorder
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2011 4:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Carthaginian wrote:
lincolnlog wrote:
Many state National Guards are still commissioning High School grads with college defferment, then the newly commissioned officers have so many years to achieve a degree.


Though following this path, the officer in question 1.) cannot be promoted beyond O-2 [no exceptions] until degree completion and 2.) will immediately revert to enlisted if they fail to obtain a degree in 4 years [barring deployments].

The fastest climbers I met in the Guard were the private 'military academy' grads- they are commissioned under the same basic rules, but already had the equivalent of an associate's degree. One year of overloaded semesters would allow them to complete their degree obligation and continue to be promoted... and a few made O-3 (via waver) by their 4th year.


As an enlisted man in the Army National Guard myself, I would be very nervous about having to follow an O-3 with only 3 or 4 years of service.
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