Navy r sum doesn't quite hold water

Navy r sum doesn't quite hold water

There are 42 comments on the Chicago Tribune story from Oct 1, 2008, titled Navy r sum doesn't quite hold water. In it, Chicago Tribune reports that:

When Vice Adm. Donald Arthur retired as Navy surgeon general, Adm. Mike Mullen - now chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff - paid tribute to a "Renaissance man." "His resume says a lot," Mullen said.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Chicago Tribune.

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United States

#2 Oct 1, 2008
Let's put Obama through this same scrutiny.

At least Arthur has held a job.
Long View

West Columbia, SC

#3 Oct 1, 2008
Cut to the chase: In a civilian world or academia, if you or I had perpetrated that kind of fraud, we would have been out the door and stripped of our retirements!

What kind of crap does Arthur expect us to believe when he says he was "naive" about the nature of the institutions granting his degrees? Anyone who has been through the rigors of undergraduate school, med school, and applying for residency programs knows full well how much "juice" an institution has: How it ranks against other institutions, how difficult the program of instruction is, how prestigious the degree is on the other side of the process. Please, claiming to be unaware and unsophisticated in the value of his degrees stretches credulity beyond all recognition. I do not accept the "40 year old virgin" thesis!

When those crooks charge him $10,000 for a term paper and then award him a degree, he knows full well what other people have gone through to get their PhD and what his degree represents: fraud. When he does it twice in a short period of time, he has established a pattern of prosecutable misconduct.

That the Navy swallowed this crap tells me that this may well be a wide-spread artifice whereby senior officers pad their resumes to win highly coveted flag-rank promotions. What other skeletons are in the Navy's flag locker? Admiral IG are you listening?

Glen Ellyn, IL

#4 Oct 1, 2008
Taxpayer wrote:
Let's put Obama through this same scrutiny.
At least Arthur has held a job.
Buying degrees? That's what McCain did by going to the Naval Academy since his father was and admiral and his grandfather had been an admiral. No one dared flunk him out. They let him ride it out and graduate at the BOTTOM of his class.

Virginia Beach, VA

#5 Oct 1, 2008
reality wrote:
<quoted text>
Buying degrees? That's what McCain did by going to the Naval Academy since his father was and admiral and his grandfather had been an admiral. No one dared flunk him out. They let him ride it out and graduate at the BOTTOM of his class.
He graduated, did YOU? hehe
Mike In Virginia

United States

#6 Oct 1, 2008
reality wrote:
<quoted text>
Buying degrees? That's what McCain did by going to the Naval Academy since his father was and admiral and his grandfather had been an admiral. No one dared flunk him out. They let him ride it out and graduate at the BOTTOM of his class.
McCain's GRADUATING last in his class from the United States Naval Academy still trumps your GED moron.
Forgive But Never Forget

Washington, DC

#7 Oct 31, 2008
What an interesting article and commentary.

Some reflections after serving with Don Arthur for 15 years, and more importantly serving with past and present members of his inner circle who would speak more bluntly after a few of their favorite beverages.

Follow his advice and guidance precisely and be rewarded with prime billets, promotion, and ultimately membership in his circle. Disagree with or otherwise challenge his assumptions and beliefs and find yourself out of contention for those choice billets and any further upward mobility in Navy medicine.

The question about his emergency medicine board certification is an interesting one. Board certification has long been held as the MINIMUM standard for a Navy physician seeking promotion to the O-5 or O-6 level. And I am quite certain Don Arthur held many to this MINIMUM standard when he served on promotion boards. Did he achieve initial board certification and choose not to recertify after leaving clinical practice? Or did he never achieve board certification? If the latter, one could argue he should never have been promoted to O-6 much less to O-9.

While he was serving as the Chief Executive Officer of Camp LeJeune Naval Hospital, there were several well documented and serious quality of care issues related to the misdiagnosis of breast cancer on mammograms and missed cancers on pathology specimens. Was the captain of this ship ever held accountable? No. He ensured several of his subordinates were disciplined and cheerfully accepted his promotion to rear admiral.

Don Arthur left navy medicine in worse shape than he found it in large part because he surrounded himself with "yes men" and "yes women" who would dare not tell him anything he did not want to hear. No surprise many of them have also been promoted to flag rank. And while he may not have done anything illegal in the strictest technical sense, his moral and ethical conduct are far below what is expected of all sailors.

Looking forward to the follow up article. Many American gangsters were never found guilty of their real crimes, but the IRS eventually held them accountable for their misdeeds.
American Tax Payer


#8 Oct 31, 2008
It is sad that this fraud was perpetrated onto the American Tax Payers. I wonder how many individuals he hurt during his tenure? I'm sure there were some enlisted men and women who tried to do the right thing and got hell to pay for. I'm sure there were some Navy Physicians and Surgeons who, instead of turning away, they pointed out some wrong doings - I wonder where they are now? I hope they are glad to hear this news and I hope that their good name should and could be restored. It's the least the US Government should do to provide reparations to those who have been injured by this fraud.
A Sad Navy Day

Frederick, MD

#10 Nov 1, 2008
“The true hypocrite is the one who ceases to perceive his deception, the one who lies with sincerity”
~Andre Gide
Still Active Duty

Chevy Chase, MD

#11 Nov 1, 2008
There were a lot more perfectly valid comments on this blog yesterday - something like 50+ or so - the vast majority have been deleted. Why?
A Sad Navy Day

Frederick, MD

#12 Nov 1, 2008
Still Active Duty wrote:
There were a lot more perfectly valid comments on this blog yesterday - something like 50+ or so - the vast majority have been deleted. Why?
Still There:

But don't know for how long...
A Sad Navy Day

Frederick, MD

#13 Nov 2, 2008
Commander Butler

Wellton, AZ

#14 Nov 6, 2008
"It was a stirring testimonial, but not entirely accurate. While Arthur's bachelor's and MD were legitimate, he has no master's. The PhD came from a university whose accreditation the federal government doesn't recognize. And the JD, or law degree, was granted by a diploma mill that collapsed after its president was imprisoned for fraud." Chicago Tribune

The testimonial at the retirement means that Admiral Mullen thinks some of the degrees were fraudulent. That is his message.

Does the False Claims Act apply to Donald Caldwell Arthur: Did he make a false claim? Should taxpayers pay quite so much to Vice-Admiral Arthur, since he earned only 2 of his 5 degrees in a respected fashion, and was probably promoted in part because of them, resulting in a higher pension for taxpayers to support?

Does Main Line Health know he has 2 valid degrees, and 3 invalid degrees? If you were a doctor at Main Line Health, would you want such a man in charge of your credentials? If you were a patient at Main Line Health, would you want such a doctor in charge of your care? Would you think such an appointment to be 'Enron' corporate medicine at its most egregious?
Rum Soaked Slobs

Washington, DC

#15 Nov 7, 2008
Looks like Navy Medicine is losing interest in this matter. Big Navy doesn't care. Everybody has decided to cut their losses and run for the proverbial hills it seems. After all there is honor among thieves when everybody is trying to save their own hide. A very sad day for Navy Medicine indeed.

"I'll sing you a song, a good song of the sea
With a way, hey, blow the man down
And trust that you'll join in the chorus with me
Give me some time to blow the man down

There was an old skipper I don't know his name
With a way, hey, blow the man down
Although he once played a remarkable game
Give me some time to blow the man down

His ship lay be-calmed in the tropical sea
With a way, hey, blow the man down
He whistled all day but in vain for a breeze
Give me some time to blow the man down."
We Will Keep Coming

Washington, DC

#16 Nov 12, 2008
True peace is not merely the absence of tension: it is the presence of justice.

-Martin Luther King, Jr
May Truth Prevail


#17 Nov 15, 2008
IMO, falsifying residency training and board certification in Emergency Medicine would be the most serious charges of all. It is cause for a medical board to revoke a medical license. It would render the physician unable to even be credentialed at the hospitals he commanded. Why is something so obviously and easily verifiable still a point of conjecture? The Navy's claim that his promotions were only based on the M.D. qualifications, and not the other credentials would look more ridiculous, if the M.D. credentials were falsified. Submitting false information to a medical licensing board is a serious offense. If his M.A., which he has admitted he did not actually get, is listed on his medical license application, he has submitted false information. Medical boards take a dim view of this.

Is the Chicago Tribune looking into this? If not, why not? It seems quite important, whether the person who advanced to the highest rank in the Navy, and is now drawing down a huge pension at taxpayer's expense, did so by fraud.

Concerned Citizen
Durham, NC
May Truth Prevail


#18 Nov 15, 2008
To: Karen Arthur Lowther:

I can appreciate your unswerving, sisterly affection for your brother. You could do him a great service by responding with concrete documentation, rather than the sort of eyewash and obfuscation you've provided so far.

Whether your RN be recognized or not in any number of states is an argument beside the point at issue, whether Donald Arthur's degrees be legitimate. My e-mail address is listed as my "name." I can't use the actual address because the period and the at-sign are impermissible symbols. "Dt" means dot, "at" means the at-sign. My mailing address is P. O. Box 13934, Gainesville, FL 32604.

Your first step should be to urge your brother to provide me hard copies of his law-degree, JD, his master's degree in genetics, MA, and his PhD in health care management, hard copies of his master's thesis in genetics and of his PhD thesis in health care management as well as hard-copy documentation of the accreditation of the institutions that issued those degrees.

According to the Chicago Tribune story, in the interview he had with the reporter, he denied having received the master's degree in genetics.

Reporters sometimes get things wrong. Did he affirm having received a master's degree in genetics? The answer is either yes or no. It is not too much to demand a firm answer, one way or the other.

If he did, the documentation he sends me should verify it. If he did not, did he submit the claim of a master's degree in genetics to the New Jersey College of Medicine and Dentistry, from where he got his MD? If so, he gained admission there by fraud and that institution should retract his MD. Whether it will, I cannot predict but I would recommend that action.

Please provide the same sort of hard-copy documentation for his JD-degree and his PhD in health care management. That documentation should not be difficult to provide, if it exists. I will happily forward it to the Chicago Tribune and to other concerned persons and media to correct the record.

Please also provide whatever waiver and authorization from your brother it would take to permit me to access the documentation of the Navy-investigation that allegedly cleared him of all wrongdoing, the investigation that one of the correspondents, supra, has claimed examined all his qualifications under a microscope. All such documentation should be readily available public record but it probably is not. If is is, please advise how I may access it myself.

It is probably confidential. If so, it would take at least a signed and notarized waiver of confidentiality and a request from Donald Arthur, himself, to permit me access to it.

Upon receipt of that investigative file, I would forward it to as many public media as will publicize it, the better to trumpet to the world the truth of the matter. If he is, as he claims innocent of all wrongdoing, that publicity should settle the matter in his favor and no further questions should follow.

If he be guilty, as some suspect, then he deserves the strictest discipline and penalties that the law allows. Whether some enterprising US Attorney would prosecute the case is a separate question.

In the meantime, the court of public opinion should at least receive the Truth of the matter for its information and should be able to mull it over.

Eric N. Grosch, MD
Jacksonville, Fl
[email protected]


Ocala, FL

#19 Nov 16, 2008
This fraud was instrumental, during his tenure as SG of tne Navy, for the "disestablishment: of my parent group, the Navy's Dental Corps. My family had over 75 years of service in this Corps across two generations beginning from WWII. This organization contributed greatly to the health care needs of our service members with quality and devotion. Further, given the type of individuals that were recruited and served, many went on to distinguished careers in universities and other professional service. Arthur ended that. He did vet his appropriate minions within our Corps to carry out his wishes and they did. Despite some hard fought battles by our retired group of officers before the American Dental Association and other organizations, we ultimately failed to prevent his organizational folly. The effects are now telling in all manner of ways and were quite predictable. But this is but one example of how this individual applied the full powers of his office and his "credentials" to effect long lasting policies in the naval health care system. They are now certainly worse off in the realm of dentistry by his hand. Any of his major policies on his watch should be reexamined with a hard,critical eye. Of course he was damn sure promoted to THE highest level of the Navy's executive medicine tree because of these "degrees". Now all those decision "fruits" are poisonous.

Orlando, FL

#20 Nov 17, 2008
George O'Leary had his contact for the head coaching job at Notre Dame University rescinded for falsifying his resume. Are we to conclude that football coaches are being held to a higher standard of ethics than the most senior medical officer in the US Navy? The tenure of Donald Arthur as SG marks a very dark period in the annals of Navy medicine.
Diagnosis and Treatment

Frederick, MD

#21 Nov 22, 2008
The prescription for this mess is quite simple really; forgive if you have been wronged. Make amends if you have wronged others.
The Truth In You

Washington, DC

#22 Dec 12, 2008
I seek the truth in you
The weak lie is not you
So speak up, yes you

The truth hurts but it works
The truth simplifies and dignifies
The truth sooths preserving your youth

I ask the truth of you
Cry now, take a tissue
So speak up, yes you

The truth signifies and modifies
The truth is within and the best way to begin
The truth is a good start especially for sweethearts

I need the truth of you
Simply choose your venue
So speak up, yes you

The truth to any degree
Is a starting point to be free
Just like one and two make three
So speak up, yes you
If you agree

Copyright 2006 - Sylvia Chidi

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