I’m Captain of this Ship, now Shut the Fuck Up!

The appropriate amount of time has passed between then and now. It’s time to finally write up a little bit of commentary on recent events. However, since the following rant may have very little relevance to many people, read on only if you understand the context. Otherwise, do not, because it is not going to make much sense to you.

I am the head admin of a couple of projects that have been near and dear to my heart. One of which has existed for over six years, the other for nearly five years. Both projects involve(d) some of the same people, and both projects were related to one another. One is actually dependant on the other. As I said before, both projects involve some of the same people and so when a person abandons one project, it’s somewhat of a disappointment and tends to affect the other project some.

As a head admin, I’m given to making certain policy decisions that not everyone is going to agree with. In fact, being a leader holds those tougher decisions as a primary function. When something is working against the greater good of the project, you have to do whatever it takes to get the group back on track by either resolving or eliminating the problem. If that problem happens to be a member of the group who does not carry their own weight, then you have to dismiss them from the group outright, and either reallocates the resources you currently have or find new resource upon which to draw from in order to pick up the slack left behind by that person.

The decision I made a couple of weeks ago resulted in not only the loss of one, but two people. Do I regret making that decision? Abso-fucking-lutely not. Why? Because the group was suffering due to the inactivity and lack of consistant contribution to the project. One was hardly there to begin with, and was in fact dragging the reputation of the group down due to their absence. The other had displayed such utter illogic in their demands for “rectification” in my decision, which they found fault with, that they left the group in protest. That’s fine. I’d rather they leave than continue to act as obstacles. It had gotten to a point where there was no support for either to remain, though the abrupt departure (rather than dismissal) was just that. In the end, though, the subsequent actions of that individual in relation to the other project, has further solidified my stance. It was definitely time for them to leave and find other things to do with their time. To bring a larger sense of finality to the whole ordeal, it appears that we were better off. Things are flowing far more smoothly than before, though some of the sweeping changes that have been made are a little outside my expectations… they seem to actually be working better than I could have hoped. The new people brought into the group have not only made up for the detriment, but have also exceeded the expectations I had set upon them. If they remain consistant, I don’t see why we would not excel toward our goal above and beyond our deadlines.

Contrary to the belief of one, I am not the same person of old. This is not then, and accomplishments notwithstanding, what you do now is as much important to the goal as what you have done… if not, then it is more important than you realize. If you do not like the way I run things, then all one has to do is leave. However, do not look back at what you left and pine away by lingering on a lack of reason or the supposed hypocrisy of others. You are no better than the other as far as being a hypocrite is, so inasmuch as I love listening to people making judgments on others, I think they need to recognize the faults within before pointing the old finger.

As head admin, it’s my job to make the tough decisions. If in making that decision, I require opinions or suggestions, I will ask for it, listen, and then come to that decision after the last suggestion has been made. Therefore, when I make those kinds of decisions, I expect them to be followed or else the person in question can leave. There are not two head admins for this reason, and if I do not want to spend time having to justify my decision, then I will not. Those who are unwilling to submit to that kind of authority or leadership need not continue to do so. So long as they do, however, then they need to understand something about who has the final word in any decision regarding these projects:

“Mr. Hunter, I’ve made a decision. I’m Captain of this ship, now shut the fuck up.” — Michael Schiffer, Crimson Tide (1995, Hollywood Pictures/Simpson & Bruckheimer Films).

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    • hawking on May 31, 2003 at 03:49

    And if you recall in that movie that you chose your quote from, the Captain was wrong in his decision and choice, despite his decision being upheld by policy and procedure, which was the point of the movie. Choose a different quote next time. 😉

    I’m not going to talk about this subject anymore because the subject is dead. You’ve made your decisions, I’ve made mine. That’s all there is to it.

    • jetblack on May 31, 2003 at 05:48

    Which is why you chose to remove the comment feature from your post. I did not. And the choice in quotation is still sound. Regardless of your opinion, once the decision is made from the final authority, that’s it. The decision is made whether you like it or not.

    — ZC

    • jilarson on May 31, 2003 at 10:05


    I wanted to respond to you somewhere. While this may not be the most appropriate place to do it, I feel that the response needs to be made in a public forum as well.

    I am sorry that you felt it necessary to leave WNOHGB. In some aspects I wasn’t surprised that you decided to step down, but on the other hand I was shocked at your response to it. I felt that the decision made was justified by the lack of activity that was being shown. For a long time we all covered for this person and offered our support, expressing our understanding that Real Life gets busy and that we would fill in until they were able to spend the time necessary again. Several offers of help from me personally were declined, and when I did attempt to help or make a decision, I got a very terse reminder that it was not my responsibility to help and that it would be appreciated if I just kept to my own business and that the work would get done. That didn’t happen, two responses in 1 year is unsatisfactory, for any of us. I would have expected no less.

    It’s my understanding that an off-line agreement had been made that activity would pick up again, the fact that I found out about it after the fact, and that I was surprised that the agreement had been made, well, that doesn’t speak well for the party at hand.

    The recent events, were not out of distrust or paranoia. They were for administrative purposes. We all understand the financial investment that was made. But with your departure, we all felt that having the central location being somewhere where an active member of the community could have direct access to the hardware was important. This wasn’t a snap decision, and it was talked about extensively before the subject was brought up to you.

    Again, I’m sorry that the situation has led to your decision to step down.

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