I would never slag him (Barksdale), but I do the authorities who allowed it, and the authorities who desired it... The captain and the owners. Again the captain comes directly not play. A fool who didnt want a marine diesel mechanic.
"Want" may have had nothing to do with it. Walbridge may have been a man who loved what he was doing and simply didn't have the money to keep Bounty well maintained and couldn't leave the ship he loved no matter what shape she was in.
I think every boat owner here and elsewhere would keep their vessel in pristine condition, both mechanically and aesthetically if money was no object. And those who love their boat but don't have that kind of money do the best they can with what they have.
If the crew was some of the least experienced and lowest paid, one would think the primary reason was available funds. At the captain's level, it may have meant the owners gave him only enough to keep the ship afloat. (I have a hard time believing Walbridge was pocketing available funds for his piggy bank.) At the owner's level it may have meant an inability to maintain and crew the vessel properly due to lack of funds or the owners had the money but refused to put any more than they did to keep her afloat. As it has been suggested that the crew was putty in the captain's hands, it could easily have been true that the captain was putty in the owner's hands.
But give me a sailboat that makes my heart pound and enough money to do what I want with it and it will be the best maintained and best looking sailboat wherever she goes. I have a feeling Robin Walbridge would have done the same with Bounty, if he had the money available to him.
That said, it doesn't release him from allegations of being the primary reason why Bounty set sail when a major storm was approaching.