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Re: [xml-dev] RE: XML As Fall Guy

Speaking of the kind of professionalism that spotlights unsafe
practices, in my own mind that's exactly what Manning and Snowden did.
They spotlighted practices unsafe for any country that loves liberty:
they shined a bright light on the normalization of deviance from the
Rule of Law (and in Manning's case, also on the reassuringly high
professionalism of *some* of U.S. thinking and communication), and the
normalization of deviance from the Separation of Powers which occurs
when the Executive Branch knows everything about everything, and nobody
else does.

It's ominous that we're still waiting for any official revelation of
what is going wrong, much less any reforms like SUBSAFE.  Meanwhile the
U.S. is cruising at deeper depths than ever before.  I wonder what the
crush-depth is, and whether the creaky old U.S. Constitution, which was
not designed for its current environment, is already too deep to come
back up.

Americans adapted beneficially to the Thresher and Challenger disasters.
 Why not to the war crimes, the NSA intrusion, and the ongoing campaign
finance disasters, each of which is much more threatening to liberty and
justice for all?

And is this question relevant to discussion about XML's development and
promulgation?  I think very much so, and for the same reasons that I've
been deeply involved in XML, nee SGML, since 1986.

On 12/03/2013 10:05 AM, cbullard@hiwaay.net wrote:
> Referring to Admiral Rickover:
> "*He* was the one in charge, he had the authority and the backing, and
> apparently he had good managerial skills.  And every Tuesday without
> fail we and every nuclear contractor had to send a letter addressed to
> him *personally* that would begin"
> See USS Thresher.  "Too far, too fast." and look up the term Scope of
> Certification which came into use after that failure.
> Look up "normalization of deviance".
> http://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/Professionalism/The_Loss_of_USS_Thresher
> Letting the bean counters have the final say:
> "The shipyard then stopped testing due to deadlines and increasing cost."
> Relying on standards:
> "What probably happened was that quality control and safety standards
> were all right down to operating depths of pre-Thresher subs. But when
> they built one to go much deeper, the standards just weren?t good enough
> anymore? The implications of the deeper depth weren?t totally grasped."
> Living with the culture:
> "One interpretation of the case is that the Navy acted rashly sending
> the Thresher to test depth, knowing the low chances of survival and
> impossibility of rescue if an incident occurred. But naval customs and
> military indoctrination of strict chain of command diffused
> responsibility among the Thresher's commanders, crew, and technicians.
> This situation created either unawareness of dangerous conditions, or
> unwillingness to assume the risk of reporting risks and defying orders."
> Living with the failure:
> "The loss of loved ones is always difficult to bear, but military
> families typically take comfort knowing their loved ones died valiantly
> serving their country. The Thresher incident was different: the
> submarine sank during what should have been a routine test. But even
> now, 50 years later, families of those lost in the Thresher disaster
> take comfort in knowing that the incident provoked major overhauls in
> naval safety. "We are so appreciative that something good came of this,
> with the creation of the SUBSAFE that the Navy has taught us about all
> of these years later. USS Thresher changed history.""
> Software is a very different business if you have to look into the faces
> of people you will kill by being too self-centered and unable to see the
> big picture.
> What should we learn:
> "There are several lessons from this case that shed light on
> professionalism. Professionals must exercise constant vigilance to avoid
> the effects of normalization of deviance. This is a personal
> responsibility, but also must be ingrained in programs such as SUBSAFE.
> Management must uphold consistent standards of quality, without
> diffusing responsibility. Professionals must also be willing and able to
> spotlight unsafe practices, despite personal risk."
> Most of us are in the shoe business and aching feet are just a fact of
> life.  It's a bad attitude in any profession.
> len
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