Friday, July 13, 2012

let's draft our kids...,

NYTimes | In late June, Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal, the former commander of international forces in Afghanistan, called for reinstating the draft. “I think if a nation goes to war, every town, every city needs to be at risk,” he said at the Aspen Ideas Festival. “You make that decision and everybody has skin in the game.”

This was the first time in recent years that a high-profile officer has broken ranks to argue that the all-volunteer force is not necessarily good for the country or the military. Unlike Europeans, Americans still seem determined to maintain a serious military force, so we need to think about how to pay for it and staff it by creating a draft that is better and more equitable than the Vietnam-era conscription system.

A revived draft, including both males and females, should include three options for new conscripts coming out of high school. Some could choose 18 months of military service with low pay but excellent post-service benefits, including free college tuition. These conscripts would not be deployed but could perform tasks currently outsourced at great cost to the Pentagon: paperwork, painting barracks, mowing lawns, driving generals around, and generally doing lower-skills tasks so professional soldiers don’t have to. If they want to stay, they could move into the professional force and receive weapons training, higher pay and better benefits.

Those who don’t want to serve in the army could perform civilian national service for a slightly longer period and equally low pay — teaching in low-income areas, cleaning parks, rebuilding crumbling infrastructure, or aiding the elderly. After two years, they would receive similar benefits like tuition aid.

And libertarians who object to a draft could opt out. Those who declined to help Uncle Sam would in return pledge to ask nothing from him — no Medicare, no subsidized college loans and no mortgage guarantees. Those who want minimal government can have it.

Critics will argue that this is a political non-starter. It may be now. But America has already witnessed far less benign forms of conscription. A new draft that maintains the size and the quality of the current all-volunteer force, saves the government money through civilian national service and frees professional soldiers from performing menial tasks would appeal to many constituencies.


SabrinaBee said...

CNu, are you kidding? LOL! Half of America will put Ricin in the water supply before they cut off the outsourced money flowing through the defense department. And for all the Libertarian croaking, given the option to opt out, I am sure they will pull an Ann O'Conner name change before the ink is dry. They meant those other people.

Not to worry though, we will be full of bodies so long as all goes according to plan. Tuition too high, immigrants seeking citizenry, and I don't know if you knew about this but, the Bush 'No Child Left Behind' bill has a clause that schools seeking federal funds provide a recruitment list for the military.!/entry/no-child-left-behind-by-military-recruiters,50005a487af68a84dc074801/1

CNu said...

Sistah Bee, in a world of contracting economies, resource scarcity, and increasing austerity - there is something to be said for the ancient principle of civic virtue

Dale Asberry said...

And that would be....?

CNu said...

Tell me you didn't miss the gist of y'day's arc?

Kansas City's gang bangers are violent random stooges, because they
don't have a unitary mission and just muddle through killing one another and innocent bystanders in service to a distorted, and undirected psychopathic identity. Chicago's gang leaders have been
imprisoned, so the exponentially larger gang systems in Chicago have
lost their mission, and have devolved to Kansas City style stupidity on
steroids. American Me does a fine job of depicting much of what is wrong
with the "mission" given that it's mostly fueled by juvenile detention
fear and the craving to overcome that fear by being feared (respected).
American elites have fallen very far from the WASPish Rooseveltian
oeuvre that once fueled their "virtuous" cultural aims, so the whole is now teetering on the edge of a de-evolutionary spiral.

If someone threatened you and your'n - I don't think you'd hesitate to cowboy up. Now take that personal, patriarchal, familial spirit (virtue) and apply it to as broad a polity as you're able.

For me, the issue has NEVER been about the propriety of violent conflict, rather, the issue has always been (and will likely continue to be) about the scope of those I can sincerely and unhesitatingly release the beast for. Think about it.

SabrinaBee said...

Be prepared or get run over? I'm all for preparedness, in the event that it is needed not as a utility to push these very conditions into inevitability. The ideas put forth above are good aside from the ability to opt-out. Makes it too easy for the Chandlers and the Heathers (whose government funding will be redefined so as to avoid the sizing up) will avoid the same level of detriment. How else will that type (who are bred or born into the elite) learn the consequences of the decisions they make for others? If civic duty is a must for some it should be a must for all. Chandler's daddy, who happens to own that company that won the government contract and thus the ability to triple change it, will never allow the above to take place and will pay any Congress critter huge sums to prevent it from trying to save itself a thin dime.

CNu said...

Civic virtue should be a prerequisite to vote, Chandler and Heather don't want to be disenfranchised?

But the real underlying thought was encapsulated in the NYTimes article linked in which it was opined that the elites have lost any semblance of virtuousness - which you and I both lament, whether on the level of wealthy draft dodging or military industrial welfare seeking. Like I said to Dale, we're on the cusp of a systemic de-evolutionary spiral. Folks hoped and prayed that the Hon.Bro.Preznit.Double-O was FDR reincarnated - and have been deeply disappointed by what he actually turned out to be.

Dale Asberry said...

For me, the issue has NEVER been about the propriety of violent conflict Dale, rather, the issue has always been (and will likely continue to be) about the scope of those I can sincerely and unhesitatingly release the beast for. Think about it.

Nor for I. Unhesitating, unflinching, unremorseless. My issue is for replacing one misdirected psychopathocracy with another. Not only that, but I got here by choice and sussing out the rules on my own. The hell with someone else telling me (or mine) what those civic values should be. If the rest are worthless, unvirtuous, mouth-breathers then let the killer-apes have at 'em.

Now take that personal, patriarchal, familial spirit (virtue) and apply it to as broad a polity as you're able.

Funny, sounds like you have a bit of Cap'n in you today!

CNu said...

lol, laserlike, my scope is exceedingly narrow....., I call it the goodie mafia. If members of the goodie mafia don't set standards, operate aspirationally, and look out for one another, nobody else will.

Ed Dunn said...

I believe this started in 2000 with the release of American Psycho:

"A wealthy New York investment banking executive hides his alternate
psychopathic ego from his co-workers and friends as he escalates deeper
into his illogical, gratuitous fantasies.

CNu said...

C'mon magne..., Oliver Stone called that isht dead-to-rights in 1987

Now how far does the popular cultural treatment tend to lag the liminal culture realization?

How many generations are you ahead of the constituents you're trying to move?

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