2005-10-19

Are politicians who served in the army more or less likely to warmonger?

Okay, I got an interesting email about military service. Then I sent it to my friend Greg S who is a staunch and vocal conservative. Amazingly, I find most of his reasons valid, but some of his beliefs in a few core areas just over-the-top enough that I end up rejecting a lot of his conclusions despite agreeing with his reasoning.

Anyway, here is the email, followed by Greg tearing apart of it. It is his style of tearing it apart utterly that I really like, even if I don't necessarily like everything he says.

[snip]

"THIS is an eye-opener!!!! Men who served in the military know what war is all about and want to save their children from such gore by opposing the war! Its always interesting to see how people who have lived through life altering events later project them on to what they feel others should do. In this case, those that have served in our armed forces seem much less jingoistic and anxious to send our children into war, than those that have avoided and never served in the a! rmed forces!!!

Democrats: * Richard Gephardt: Air National Guard, 1965-71. * David Bonior: Staff Sgt., Air Force 1968-72. * Tom Daschle: 1st Lt., Air Force SAC 1969-72. * Al Gore: enlisted Aug. 1969; sent to Vietnam Jan. 1971 as an army journalist in 20th Engineer Brigade. * Bob Kerrey: Lt. j.g. Navy 1966-69; Medal of Honor, Vietnam. * Daniel Inouye: Army 1943-47; Medal of Honor, WWII. * John Kerry: Lt., Navy 1966-70; Silver Star, Bronze Star with Combat V, Purple Hearts. * Charles Rangel: Staff Sgt., Army 1948-52; Bronze Star, Korea. * Max Cleland: Captain, Army 1965-68; Silver Star & Bronze Star, Vietnam. Paraplegic from war injuries. Served in Congress. * Ted Kennedy: Army, 1951-53. * Tom Harkin: Lt., Navy, 1962-67; Naval Reserve, 1968-74. * Jack Reed: Army Ranger, 1971-1979; Captain, Army Reserve 1979-91. * Fritz Hollings: Army officer in WWII; Bronze Star and seven campaign ribbons. * Leonard Boswell: Lt. C! ol., Army 1956-76; Vietnam, DFCs, Bronze Stars,and

Soldier's Medal. * Pete Peterson: Air Force Captain, POW. Purple Heart, Silver Star and Legion of Merit. * Mike Thompson: Staff sergeant, 173rd Airborne, Purple Heart. * Bill McBride: Candidate for Fla. Governor. Marine in Vietnam; Bronze Star with Combat V. * Gray Davis: Army Captain in Vietnam, Bronze Star. * Pete Stark: Air Force 1955-57 * Chuck Robb: Vietnam * Howell Heflin: Silver Star * George McGovern: Silver Star & DFC during WWII. * Bill Clinton: Did not serve. Student deferments. Entered draft but received #311. * Jimmy Carter: Seven years in the Navy. * Walter Mondale: Army 1951-1953 * John Glenn: WWII and Korea; six DFCs and AirMedal with 18 Clusters. * Tom Lantos: Served in Hungarian underground in WWII. Saved by Raoul Wallenberg.

Republicans -- and these are the guys sending people to war: * Dick Cheney: did not serve. Several deferments, the last by marriage. * Dennis Hastert: did not serve. * Tom Delay: did not serve. * Roy Blunt: did not serve. * Bill Frist: did not serve. * Mitch McConnell: did not serve. * Rick Santorum: did not serve. * Trent Lott: did not serve. * John Ashcroft: did not serve. Seven deferments to teach business. * Jeb Bush: did not serve. * Karl Rove: did not serve. * Saxby Chambliss: did not serve. "Bad knee." The man who attacked Max Cleland's patriotism. * Paul Wolfowitz: did not serve. * Vin Weber: did not serve. * Richard Perle: did not serve. * Douglas Feith: did not serve. * Eliot Abrams: did not serve. * Richard Shelby: did not serve. * Jon! Kyl: did not serve. * Tim Hutchison: did not serve. * Christopher Cox: did not serve. * Newt Gingrich: did not serve. * Don Rumsfeld: served in Navy (1954-57) as flight instructor. * George W. Bush: failed to complete his six-year National Guard; got assigned to Alabama so ! he could campaign for family friend running for U.S. Senate; failed to show up for required medical exam, disappeared from duty. * Ronald Reagan: due to poor eyesight, served in a non- combat role making movies. * B-1 Bob Dornan: Consciously enlisted after fighting was over in Korea. * Phil Gramm: did not serve. * John McCain: Vietnam POW, Silver Star, Bronze Star, Legion of Merit, Purple Heart and Distinguished Flying Cross. * Dana Rohrabacher: did not serve. * John M. McHugh: did not serve. * JC Watts: did not serve. * Jack Kemp: did not serve. "Knee problem, " although continued in NFL for 8 years as quarterback. * Dan Quayle: Journalism unit of the Indiana National Guard. * Rudy Giuliani: did not serve. * George Pataki: did not serve. * Spencer Abraham: did not serve. * John Engler: did not serve. * Lindsey Graham: National Guard lawyer. * Arnold Schwarzenegger: AWOL from Austrian army base.

Pundits & Preachers

* Sean Hannity: did not serve. * Rush Limbaugh: did not serve (4-F with a 'pilonidal cyst.') * Bill O'Reilly: did not serve. * Michael Savage: did not serve. * George Will: did not serve. * Chris Matthews: did not serve. * Paul Gigot: did not serve. * Bill Bennett: did not serve. * Pat Buchanan: did not serve. * John Wayne: did not serve. * Bill Kristol: did not serve. * Kenneth Starr: did not serve. * Antonin Scalia: did not serve. * Clarence Thomas: did not serve. * Ralph Reed: did not serve. * Michael Medved: did not serve. * Charlie Daniels: did not serve. * Ted Nugent: did not serve. (He only shoots at things that don't shoot back.)

Please keep this information circulating --Illinois State Sen. Howard W. Carroll

---------- Forwarded response ---------- From: Greg S

Yea, I just find this pretty stupid. Anyone can come up with slanted political propaganda like this. I could easily find 50 republicans that did serve and 50 democrats that didn't. This doesn't appear to be a comprehensive list of every republican and democrat that holds a political office nationwide along with demographic breakdowns and statistical analysis. Also the descriptions next to the people's names are biased towards democrats, as an example look at how the entries for Al Gore and Dan Quayle are phrased:

* Al Gore: enlisted Aug. 1969; sent to Vietnam Jan. 1971 as an army journalist in 20th Engineer Brigade.

* Dan Quayle: Journalism unit of the Indiana National Guard.

The Al Gore entry includes more information in order to carry more "weight", while Dan Quayle's is phrased to sound dismissive. I'm not saying Dan Quayle actually did anything as he is a big douche, I'm just pointing out the use of language. Also the Bush description is the dishonest leftist version. If Max Cleland were a Republican the description of his service would probably have included something along the lines of "blew himself up while taking a beer break with his buddies" in order to belittle his service.

Now the main thing is there is no point to any of this, it's a strawman type attack. It assumes that in order to lead your nation in a time of war, it's a requirement that you have served in the military. Anyone with a rudimentary knowledge of US history would find the very concept ridiculous. Had military service been required to lead the nation into war, the world would be a much different place as the War of 1812, the Mexican American War, The Civil War, World War I and World War II would never have been fought. The vast majority of our presidents have been life long, career politicians usually studying law and then moving directly into government. Hell that describes most of our politicians (and to me that's a big part of our problem).

This is the problem I have with the typical attacks on Bush or Republicans coming from the left. It's just an attack that avoids argument of the issues. It's geared towards either convincing stupid people who just don't know any better by appealing to emotion or their lack of knowledge and logical reasoning skills or to rally political partisans as a type of slogan. They might as well just go around yelling, "Bush has smelly nads and fucks his dog!" Overall, it's just childish and amateur. But what can you expect, this is the kind of crap that has been driving our political system since basically it was founded, and especially after Martin Van Buren engineered the modern political and government systems along with the creation of the Democrat party.

So if people want to go at Bush over the War on Terror, fine, but come up with a view and argument to back it up. I just don't get why the left continues with these vapor arguments when there is so much you can legitimately attack the guy on. I could go down the line of almost every issue and attack the crap outa Bush and Republicans on it. Is this the best the left can come up with? Pathetic. If I had the time I could write an essay on the things I think the Bush administration is doing wrong in the WOT, but who was in the military and who was not doesn't have anything to do with the argument I would lay out. Here, I'll give you a good blog entry I! read the other day on the topic. http://nicedoggie.net/2005/index.php/?p=1010 [Clint's note: I disagree with the linked blog and the mentality it portrays.]

I believe in holding beliefs and argue on issues. Since the 1820s there really hasn't' been much room for arguing issues in American politics, and that's by design. I consider myself a Conservative Libertarian. I'm for a very small and non-intrusive government, maximum personal liberties, minimalist spending with a minimalist "fair tax" system, constitutional originalism and strict constructionism, legislative power over executive or judicial, local power over federal power, strong military/foreign policy, free market capitalism, etc. That is basically the opposite of the left. The left considers Libertarians the farthest wacko right you can get. They are for a huge all powerful government that intrudes directly into every life making many decisions for them, subjugation of individual liberties in favor of government, massive taxes to support their huge government, ignore everything the constitution says and what the founders intended in order to make up what it says on the fly so that it fits in with their agenda, power wherever they get their way (right now they like the judiciary), weak military and a foreign policy that subjugates the United States to the UN to further the creation of a one world government, communist/command economic system. Pleny of room for argument on issues there, but debate seems rare expecially in politics. Gotta come up with something bland so I can go after that "undecided" voter, or come up with some bullshit to say so as to skim x% of y demographic from my apponent. Where are you when we need you Thomas Payne, we could sure use your "Common Sense" again!"

1 Comments:

Blogger ClintJCL said...

More comments from my friend Greg S:

Hehe thanks... I just don't have it in me to do a blog. Nobody is gonna care what I have to say on anything and I spend enough time emailing congressmen, senators, president when shit pisses me off hehe. I had to send one out today. I'm a big supporter of the FairTax. There is just no reason not to implement the FairTax. Every second we keep this lame ass income tax in place is a second where we loose.



http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0060875410/103-8961314-7339003?v=glance&n=283155&n=507846&s=books&v=glance



Yesterday Bush's fucking piece of shit tax reform commission out right rejected the concept of the FairTax for reasons that are easily pointed out and easily refuted in the FairTax book. The commission might, possibly consider a VAT... well the VAT fucking sucks. Britain and Germany have it, it sucks, and the people hate it, it allows the same kind of public manipulation by politicians that the income tax does. Probably what they are gonna do is just slightly tweak what we have now... in other words talk alot, do nothing and claim credit for everything. “We reformed the tax code, America is saved!” Shut the fuck you, you guys didn’t do shit.



The income tax is the best tool government and politicians have to rip us off without us realizing it as well as try to manipulate our behavior to their will. The income tax combined with withholdings puts all of the power in the government’s hands. They use the tax code to reward their allies, hurt their enemies and line their pockets. Worst of all it allows them to implement class warfare putting American against American, rich against poor, black against white… so that we are all distracted and distrustful of each other instead of the government which is the one causing the problems in the first place!



The way the FairTax works is so sweet and elegant. It’s kind of like a national sales tax on products and services but only at the original sales point. For example if you buy a new car you pay FairTax, but if you buy a used car you don’t since the tax has already been paid on it. Tax costs are embedded throughout our entire economy and built into the price of every product we buy. That total embedded tax currently runs around 23%. With the FairTax, the embedded taxes would disappear completely because all taxes at the federal level would vanish. The IRS would go out of existence; FICA and Medicare would be covered! under the FairTax. No personal income tax, no corporate tax, no capital gains tax, no inheritance tax… all gone. It turns out the percentage rate needed by the FairTax to match our current tax revenue would be about 23% coincidentally. So what the overall affect to you is you would no longer have any federal income tax, and the products and services you purchase will cost the exact same as they do now. There are a lot more benefits to the FairTax such as economic growth, encouraging foreign companies to move to America, making outsourcing less attractive, getting tax revenue from illegal behavior and so on… I highly recommend reading the book as it will not only give you an understanding for how our current tax system came about and how it functions, but what the FairTax is and how it would benefit all ! of us. It explains it much better than I can and is short and a quick read.



The FairTax is just that, fair and equal to everyone and everything, and that is probably why the Bush tax commission doesn’t like it. It takes that manipulative capability out of the politician’s hands, and well we can’t have that. They’ve gotta be able to play favorites, line their pockets, exercise power, make people do what they want and overall fuck the American citizen in the ass!

10/19/2005 03:13:00 PM 

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