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dps
05-06-2008, 12:31 PM
http://www.breitbart.tv/html/90023.html

What do you think?

David

Cady Goldfield
05-06-2008, 07:16 PM
What do I think? I think that Mr. King needs to work on his punctuation. ;)

George S. Ledyard
05-06-2008, 08:55 PM
http://www.breitbart.tv/html/90023.html

What do you think?

David

Are you asking because you feel he said something controversial? Aside from the fact that the Army has been at the highest educational level its ever been in history for some time now, I don't see what you'd be objecting to.

The military has always been the back-up choice for the poorest folks in our society. Aside from WWII, which the only truly democratic war we've ever fought in the everyone went, regardless of class, every war we have ever been in was fought by the poorest folks in the society. The current war is no exception. The percentage of the military represented by minorities is disproportionate and representation by whites from the low and low-middle class is also disproportionate.

By having a professional army, thereby offering a choice of a career in the career military to folks who have few other good choices, allows the powers that be to make decisions about the use of force to further policy aims without fears that the consequences will hurt then with the portion of the electorate which provides their campaign funds and is most apt to vote. At the time Congress voted to go to war in Iraq, not one single representative had a family member who would have been asked to deploy.

I was the last class to get a student deferment during the Viet Nam War. It wasn't until middle class kids started to come home in body bags that the anti war effort really took off. That's why there is no motivated and effective anti war movement today. The army is all volunteer and the vast majority of the folks come from the class of society with the least influence politically.

So I don't see anything at all out of the ordinary with this statement. Looks like a simple statement of reality to me.

Buck
05-06-2008, 09:07 PM
I don't see the concern. King spoke his mind, he was coming from his generation life space to motivate kids to read to have a future in the job market. He could have said prison instead of the Army. Ouchy if he did. Really ouch, if he did a Bushism. Something like if you can't read you, can't walk, and then nobody wants a job in Iraq, or the Army. Could have been worse.

A great writer of Horror, he is not so good with the public speaking. There is the trade off. Though I gotta admit he is dated on his use of getting a point across. His point was well intended.

I would have liked to hear the question he was asked.

Cady Goldfield
05-06-2008, 09:46 PM
Funny, most of the young people I know of who lacked formal education and financial privilege joined the army in part because it would help pay for a college education when they got out.

But King doesn't seem to be talking about that type of person; apparently, he's talking about dullards. Dullards are intellectually lazy people who don't enjoy reading or engaging in mental exercise. It's not that they can't read or can't learn to read, they choose not to read or to otherwise use their brains.

Unfortunately, in calling out the dullards King implies that service as cannon fodder is one of the few career options available to people who won't read. I doubt that many dullards actually enlist, though, because they lack motivation. I mean, if you can't even pick up a copy of "Cujo" to read in the can, you're not going to make it through basic training, either. ;)

Buck
05-06-2008, 10:25 PM
Wow! Some strong opinions from watching a clip of King. I reviewed the clip to see if I didn't see it in the right way, ya know if I missed something.

1. What was the question he was asked? That isn't given. That is something I missed.

2. I missed the first time around was his body language and intonation. King clearly showed he didn't have a spot on example other then the Army. He was struggling to connect with the audience he had a generation gap with. Really the audience was not his generation. He tried to connect the best he could. He was being positive.

3. The lack of interest by the audience. The look on the audience's faces showed they where bored and cared less why they were there, and who they were listening (they weren't listening at all). Their minds where made up. They didn't want to hear what he had to say. My goodness how disrespectful. Something else I missed.

Why are we so quick to judge and be discouraging of King? The truth is if you don't learn to read the really then the only option you got is the other State University, the Pen at Folsom. Where you get a degree in shanking, special gender interpersonal relationship skills and funerals.

I think the someone who put up the video is making a mountain out of a mole hill. To move an agenda to persuade people everyone over 30 your enemy. I think it is really unnecessary. No fire here.

Buck
05-07-2008, 12:23 AM
Looks like I can't form a proper sentence, who am I to talk! Sorry about the choppy sentences. I haven't gotten use to this oversensitive mouse pad and key board. Makes typing difficult. It moves my cursor or deletes parts of my sentences, adds letters, etc. without me knowing about it while I type. Uggggh!

dps
05-07-2008, 05:42 AM
Are you asking because you feel he said something controversial?

I am asking the question without prejudice to find out what people think.



'his generation life space'

Not sure what you mean.

David

Buck
05-07-2008, 07:04 AM
David,

I mean that King's views are drawn from a different generational experience in a different time in history. King's example that he used about the army was a truth for King during the last such major war - the Viet Nam war. I would bet King was near or at the draft age at that time. During that time and in his lifetime I am sure he had seen young adults who didn't get educated have little choices in terms of a career. His point, get an education and you will have choices.

It seems there are people who are quick to be oversensitive, and think everyone else is out to offended them. It is almost a type of paranoia. It could be there is a lack of education among them?

King's comments are overblown.

Hogan
05-07-2008, 07:29 AM
... At the time Congress voted to go to war in Iraq, not one single representative had a family member who would have been asked to deploy....

Members of Congress of who either have their child(ren) currently or recently in Iraq

Sen. Jim Webb- D
Sen. Kit Bond -R
Rep. Todd Akin -R
Sen. Tim Johnson -D
Rep. Duncan Hunter-R
Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen-R

Members of Congress who have lost relatives in Iraq
Sen. Max Baucus- D lost his nephew.

And don't forget John McCain has two sons in the Military, one of which was/is in Iraq:
http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,252167,00.html

dps
05-07-2008, 08:05 AM
David,

I mean that King's views are drawn from a different generational experience in a different time in history. King's example that he used about the army was a truth for King during the last such major war - the Viet Nam war. I would bet King was near or at the draft age at that time. During that time and in his lifetime I am sure he had seen young adults who didn't get educated have little choices in terms of a career. His point, get an education and you will have choices.

It seems there are people who are quick to be oversensitive, and think everyone else is out to offended them. It is almost a type of paranoia. It could be there is a lack of education among them?

King's comments are overblown.

Thank you for clarifying that Phillip

Just to be clear King was not eligible for the draft because of physical conditions.

Do you think King's comment apply to modern military service?
David

gdandscompserv
05-07-2008, 08:33 AM
The army is all volunteer and the vast majority of the folks come from the class of society with the least influence politically.
Don't forget all them country music fans.

MM
05-07-2008, 09:16 AM
http://www.breitbart.tv/html/90023.html

What do you think?

David

I think it's a blurb taken out of context.

But, I think he was trying to find an example and came up with a poor choice. Unless you cheat or just get lucky, anyone who wants to enter the military must take the ASVAB test.
http://www.military.com/ASVAB

I've taken the test twice. Reading and comprehension are needed to take that test, along with basic math skills. There are minimum scoring levels required to join the military.
http://www.military.com/ASVAB/0,,ASVAB_Explained1.html

A dated website about how the ASVAB is scored:
http://usmilitary.about.com/od/joiningthemilitary/a/asvabscorechg.htm

So, if you can't read, you aren't going to get the minimum score on the ASVAB. You have to be at least a functional reader to take the test.

A study of "quality" recruits in the military for years 2003-2005.
http://www.heritage.org/Research/NationalSecurity/cda06-09.cfm
"The current findings show that the demo­graphic characteristics of volunteers have contin­ued to show signs of higher, not lower, quality."

Ron Tisdale
05-07-2008, 11:49 AM
YEah, but I've seen news reports now about them dropping the standards and even discounting criminal records to get people in.

Shame really.

Best,
Ron

George S. Ledyard
05-07-2008, 03:38 PM
Don't forget all them country music fans.
Ricky,
Once Country became BIG business those folks became a lot more influential... Willie Nelson at a Presidential Inauguration? Who have thought...
- George

George S. Ledyard
05-07-2008, 04:30 PM
YEah, but I've seen news reports now about them dropping the standards and even discounting criminal records to get people in.

Shame really.

Best,
Ron

Hi Ron,
It's simply not an option for them to drop the standards too far. Today's military is so sophisticated and hi-tech that the guy who is only suited for ditch digging isn't really very useful to them.

Obviously, this comment is taken totally our of context but I think it's very understandable. I've had these conversations with my sons, two of who are in college now and one will be in a few years. The competition for jobs which will allow you to make enough to have some level of financial security is getting greater and greater. University admissions is now a global competition rather than simply national. There would be no way I could get in to the college where I went now, nor do any of my kids have a prayer.

I have one son who is just in the process of finding out what's in store for him if he doesn't get a decent education. He's been working various part time jobs. Suffice it to say that he isn't impressed with John Q public's educational level or general ability level. This from a kid who doesn't yet have his high school diploma. I am hoping this experience will act as a motivator for him.

I heard this great old Mexican American farm worker on public radio talking about education. He said periodically his kids would start whining about school and what a drag it was. He said, if they wanted to stay home, that was fine but they had to go out in the fields and work with him. He said a couple of days of that and they had a whole new attitude about school again. For kids like that, it's always been the farm (or some equivalent) or the military. When the military went all volunteer and raised it's standards, it was no longer an option for the least educated to better themselves. They had to at least get a foundation educationally.

But on the topic at hand, during normal peace time or when there is a war which represents a battle against a clear threat to the country, the populace in general will turn out. But when the whole reason of the war and its goals are not clear, or, as in Viet Nam and Iraq, the reasons we went in were manufactured (Gulf of Tonkin Incident or WMD's) the better educated folks, the ones with better career options, stop enlisting. We have had to have a draft for every major war because there just aren't enough citizens who want to run out and get killed for those that they consider "elites". During most of the Viet Nam War kids like me from nice upper class backgrounds could afford to stay in school. I worked summers in Newark, NJ in a warehouse and almost 100% of the guys I had worked with had been in the military. Amongst the folks at the Ivy League school I went to I think the number might have been 5%, if that and they were scholarship kids for the most part.

Education remains very much a class issue. Kids who have not grown up in an America where opportunity was seriously restricted by race, access to top schools was race and class determined. etc don't always treat the issue of education in the way that their parents did. But the fact is that there is a direct relationship between education and economic success. It's takes money to get an education. So the military remains a very important avenue for those from the lower economic rungs of society to get money for education. The GI Bill after WWII transformed America. Even the post Viet Nam War saw a surge in college education for poor and minorities because of the huge numbers who had done military service.

There is nothing wrong with this whole thing per se. I am absolutely not in the least anti-military. But when the folks running the show make decisions which involve military force which are clearly based on factors which have more to do with preserving the economic staus quo and ensuring their own continued economic dominance of society than any actual threat to the nation, it's the folks at the bottom, the ones who benefit the least from the policies that these people put into action, that pay the price. They often do it for a shot at the American Dream but it's gets to be an unsustainable system when the risks begin to appear to outweigh the benefits.

Look at what is happening now. We have had a record number of career officers and con-coms retiring. These are the folks with the greatest experience. They drop out of the system when they can no longer see that what they have to contribute is actually making their country safer. So who replaces these folks? It's the folks from the next income and educational rung down the ladder.

It's the way the system has worked since the start and I don't see it changing any time soon. So an education isn't just about earning power, it's about having viable options apart from fighting in a war that few believe in and in which the folks most likely to get killed are the front line grunts and jar heads coming from the low end of our society's economic scale.

Kevin Leavitt
05-07-2008, 08:37 PM
Wow, you guys are depressing me talking about my career choice and the choice of many people as if it is some sort of "second choice" option.

Actually though it is good that people think this way.

I get a decent pay raise every year. I have basically tenure. I get good tax benefits, 30 days paid vacation that can be taken incrementally (translates to more than 30 days a year). I work for a family centric organization that actually does a great deal to take care of my family and the org values encourage "family". I get paid well, have a wonderful retirement plan, all my education was paid for. (I can read by the way). to include an AAS in Health Care Sciences, BS in Biochemstry, MS in Computer Science.

Not bad for a white boy that was the son of an enlisted man and the first person in my family to graduate from college!

My future..well I guess it is kinda of bleak. I can retire in about 8 years with 50% of my base pay with health insurance. Oh, I also get a 401K plan too!

On Iraq and war. Well believe it or not, some people, actually don't mind having the privilege of serving their country, and consider it an honor to do so.

Infact at my office, we have a "waiting list" of people that have volunteered to deploy. I have volunteered several times, but have not been allowed to deploy because they want me to do other things. My chance is coming up again though so hopefully they will let me go this time!

I have also gotten to do some really fun and cool things. I just got back from Europe doing some really fun stuff and meeting people from other cultures and sharing and exchanging ideas.

I have jumped out of planes, flown planes, go camping, hiking, and done alot of other things that people pay big bucks for, AND I get paid to do it!

I also get to spend a fair amount of my time training in martial arts. (It is a "martial" organization, you know).

Anyway, I and many others have "options" other than the military, but we choose it because we like it. I can't wait to retire and do some other things, but I know I will also be sad when that day comes.

It ain't all that bad folks....but keep thinking that way so Congress will continue to increase our benefits and pay! :)

Kevin Leavitt
05-07-2008, 08:41 PM
Oh yea....

We often talk about the "poor civilians" that have to cow tow to a boss and work 80 plus hours a week in fear of losing their jobs.

I feel sorry for those that have to wear a suit and tie and go to the office day in and day out, working in a cube for two weeks of vacation a year, that they can't take because it would not show dedication to the company.

The movie Office Space comes to mind.....

I suppose that being able to read allows you to make have this kind of lifestyle....

since we are being stereotypical and all that....

Buck
05-07-2008, 10:11 PM
Thank you for clarifying that Phillip

Just to be clear King was not eligible for the draft because of physical conditions.

Do you think King's comment apply to modern military service?
David

Hmmm...I don't know much of military service beyond having a friend or two being in the military. I have to agree that the military changes. History tells your that. There are different branches of the military, each has different recruit requirements.

For example, my cousin, who dropped out of high school (a smart kid) decided the military might be the career for him. He hit all the recruiters and was rejected by all branches except the Marine Corps, because he lacked a diploma. At the time the Marines offered to work with him to get a GED with his training. This was during peace time. Am sure it would have been a different story if a war was going on. I don't think that would have been the situation for him in the military of the 60's or before that time. Times change.

King drew from a wartime he experienced 40 years ago making mental parallels with then and now. On the surface it sounded ripe to those looking for an opportunity to play the sensitivity game. I don't think King was out to insult anyone.

Ron Tisdale
05-08-2008, 09:27 AM
Kevin, sorry you took my post that way, it's not the way I intended. A little background, perhaps.

My father, uncles, and cousins fought in every war since WWII. My father quit high school, went to war, came back and finished high school, went to college on the GI Bill, and raised a family. Worked upteen years for the FDA. My brother was in the Air Force.

I have nothing but respect for the folks who choose to make the Military their career, and no where did I say they can't read. In fact, my father qualified in the Navy as a radio operator (without having even graduated high school). They sent him to Hawaii, where the commander said "go sit in the baracks til I can get rid of you". He was shipped out as a cook on the Kula Bay in the Pacific.

He is one of the most patriotic guys I know, despite that experience. But he does NOT agree with THIS war. I'm sure if called and of age now, he'd still serve though.

Not so sure about myself...

Best,
Ron (and stay well, where ever you serve...my deepest thanks)

George S. Ledyard
05-09-2008, 03:05 AM
Wow, you guys are depressing me talking about my career choice and the choice of many people as if it is some sort of "second choice" option.

Actually though it is good that people think this way.

I get a decent pay raise every year. I have basically tenure. I get good tax benefits, 30 days paid vacation that can be taken incrementally (translates to more than 30 days a year). I work for a family centric organization that actually does a great deal to take care of my family and the org values encourage "family". I get paid well, have a wonderful retirement plan, all my education was paid for. (I can read by the way). to include an AAS in Health Care Sciences, BS in Biochemstry, MS in Computer Science.

Not bad for a white boy that was the son of an enlisted man and the first person in my family to graduate from college!

My future..well I guess it is kinda of bleak. I can retire in about 8 years with 50% of my base pay with health insurance. Oh, I also get a 401K plan too!

On Iraq and war. Well believe it or not, some people, actually don't mind having the privilege of serving their country, and consider it an honor to do so.

Infact at my office, we have a "waiting list" of people that have volunteered to deploy. I have volunteered several times, but have not been allowed to deploy because they want me to do other things. My chance is coming up again though so hopefully they will let me go this time!

I have also gotten to do some really fun and cool things. I just got back from Europe doing some really fun stuff and meeting people from other cultures and sharing and exchanging ideas.

I have jumped out of planes, flown planes, go camping, hiking, and done alot of other things that people pay big bucks for, AND I get paid to do it!

I also get to spend a fair amount of my time training in martial arts. (It is a "martial" organization, you know).

Anyway, I and many others have "options" other than the military, but we choose it because we like it. I can't wait to retire and do some other things, but I know I will also be sad when that day comes.

It ain't all that bad folks....but keep thinking that way so Congress will continue to increase our benefits and pay! :)

It's a great career, don't get me wrong. But things change when there is a war. Then it becomes a matter of balancing the risks and the benefits, just like anything else.

One of the benefits is that you get to feel that you are doing some good, protecting your country, dealing some justice to the bad guys, etc. That desire to "serve" probably outweighs the other benefits in getting people to take on the high risk of combat. But when the folks on the ground start to lose any sense of purpose regarding the war in question, then the benefits typically stop outweighing the risks. No one wants to die for nothing. That's when things fall apart as they did in the Viet Nam War.

We have a tremendous military. One of the reasons I am so enraged about our leadership lately is that they have, in my mind, squandered this resource. We lose our people and it isn't making our country one iota safer from the real threats that exist. As far as I am concerned it's criminal.

But don't think I am bad mouthing the military... they are doing a fantastic job in an impossible situation.

MM
05-09-2008, 09:01 AM
We have a tremendous military. One of the reasons I am so enraged about our leadership lately is that they have, in my mind, squandered this resource. We lose our people and it isn't making our country one iota safer from the real threats that exist.


I guess we disagree on that point. I look back at all the terrorist attacks from previous presidents and I look at them after 9/11/2001. There is no comparison. Many before ... none after. Very well funded, well led terrorist organizations before ... none after. So, yes, in my reality, we have made our country 100% safer and continue to do so. We have used our military very well in our efforts to reduce or eliminate terrorism. What we have done has worked and it's worked very well.

IMO anyway,
Mark

Ron Tisdale
05-09-2008, 09:24 AM
I can't imagine that our time in Iraq has much to do with whatever success we've had. It may have provided a boost to people who would not have even been part of the major group that poses a threat. Most of the people in Iraq are really in a sub-organization. So I don't think you can make a case that the war in Iraq has contributed to whatever success we may have had.

Best,
Ron

MM
05-09-2008, 09:48 AM
I can't imagine that our time in Iraq has much to do with whatever success we've had. It may have provided a boost to people who would not have even been part of the major group that poses a threat. Most of the people in Iraq are really in a sub-organization. So I don't think you can make a case that the war in Iraq has contributed to whatever success we may have had.

Best,
Ron

Unfortunately, that's part of this war that will always be arguable. It's also one of my big criticisms of this administration. They gave us virtually nothing in the way of news about how the war was progressing. Our major source of news came from, well, the mainstream media. Which, unfortunately, is anti-Bush.

So, yeah, I guess we disagree here. I think the war in Iraq has proven vital to reducing terrorism. Saddam had billions of dollars to funnel into terrorism, which helped him because it struck at his enemies without him needing to. Iraq was a breeding ground for terrorist organizations. Yes, some terrorists and organizations have moved elsewhere, but without a major leader, a major country, and a lot of money, they really are having hard times doing much.

Do I think our actions are foolproof? No. I think somewhere, sometime, some terrorists are going to succeed and attack us here in the U.S. But, if you compare the last seven years with the seven years prior to 2001, you find a vast difference. But we'll never know for sure if that difference would have been the same if we hadn't invaded Iraq. IMO, it wouldn't. But, we all have our opinions.

And I don't mind posting them because I know between you and George (and others, just that here, I seem to be mostly replying to you two), I can have a civil discourse even if we don't agree. :)

Mark

Ron Tisdale
05-09-2008, 09:55 AM
Our major source of news came from, well, the mainstream media. Which, unfortunately, is anti-Bush.

;) I'm not sure they are anti-Bush...or if they are, they have extremely good reason, in my opinion.

Saddam had billions of dollars to funnel into terrorism, which helped him because it struck at his enemies without him needing to. Iraq was a breeding ground for terrorist organizations.

I'm sorry, but I just don't see any support for this what-so-ever. The current administration has tried to sell this bill of goods, and failed. Miserably. If there is evidence of this, I'd like to see it...

And I don't mind posting them because I know between you and George (and others, just that here, I seem to be mostly replying to you two), I can have a civil discourse even if we don't agree. :)

Mark

Absolutely!
Best,
Ron

Aikibu
05-09-2008, 10:23 AM
Been on both sides of the coin and all I can say is that I just lived through one of the worst if not the worst Presidential Administrations in our brief history. I have lost allot of old friends over my views.

Eisnhower was right....we can scare up 400 Billion for War and yet we can't find 5 Billion for childrens healthcare. The average NCO in the Army makes more money and has better healthcare/subsidies than the average teacher of the those kids...

We spend more more on the defense the the REST OF THE WORLD COMBINED and yet we can't beat a bunch of dudes with nothing but small arms and IED's and can't even take care of or own here at home (aka KATRINA)

Welcome to the new world ladies and gents... A state of perpetual war. Where the richer get richer off the sweat of our brows... The only real career chioce for the poor and middle class is Military Service (as long as you don't get injured or seriously hurt and end up in that other Hell The V.A.) And where (no shit) your average kid gets a 4 year education in college and graduates with a load of debt and a future full of mediocre paying jobs...

I get to spend the second half of my life trying to do something about the looming disasters one after the other just over the horizon which have eroded the average citizens way of life since Eisnhower left office before I was born...

You can believe all the lies you wish I don't care but as Tetsen Rinpoche said the other day here in Malibu The only thing you take with you after this life is your spiritual practice.

William Hazen

Misogi-no-Gyo
05-09-2008, 11:41 AM
Speaking to the thread - I think that while it is true that Mr. King gives a poor example, If you look at (state of) the audience, what he says should be of a higher level of concern to many of them than they would like to admit. However, today we also have the very lucrative avenue of professional sports and other non-classical alternatives to the 9 to 5 for 40 years generation. I mean, there is always hip-hop, american idol, or even Survivor or the lottery. I had one friend show up on Survivor and two on big brother, so I know these alternatives are truly viable.

But, I think he was trying to find an example and came up with a poor choice. Unless you cheat or just get lucky, anyone who wants to enter the military must take the ASVAB test.
http://www.military.com/ASVAB

I've taken the test twice. Reading and comprehension are needed to take that test, along with basic math skills. There are minimum scoring levels required to join the military. So, if you can't read, you aren't going to get the minimum score on the ASVAB. You have to be at least a functional reader to take the test.

I beg to differ. I took the ASVAB test when I was 17. It was a ridiculously easy test to say the least.

A study of "quality" recruits in the military for years 2003-2005.
http://www.heritage.org/Research/NationalSecurity/cda06-09.cfm

"The current findings show that the demo­graphic characteristics of volunteers have contin­ued to show signs of higher, not lower, quality."

While this was quite a long time ago, I bet things haven't changed much since then. If they have, I bet it is just like as in football and basketball, the rules have been changed to make it easier to score higher, or like in tracking movie ticket sales which are tracked in dollars rather than in number of tickets which simply skews the overall power of a movie's draw.

Back Story
I don't remember the specifics of the test. What does stand out is how the proctor ("test administrator" for those of you who failed your SAT's) spent the first twenty minutes just trying to explain how to answer the first three questions. I think those amounted to Name (Last Name first, First Name, last) birthday and which branch of the military they were applying to). These were the most basic of questions and one would expect everyone to be able to answer these without hesitation. He was constantly interrupted with questions from various individuals who just couldn't understand the simplest instructions. That was annoying to me, because I just wanted to get through with it and get back outside where my friends were waiting. What was funny though is that the proctor asked each person which branch they were applying to. Every person that was not able to follow instructions and who interrupted the test (some several times to ask the same question) was headed for the Army. Now, I am not making that mean anything, but I will say that I finally realized why they call em "grunts" as they surely made me grunt every time they raised their hands to ask another really dumb question.

On a side note
I think I got 6 wrong on the ASVAB. Does anyone know what that translates to in terms of percentages? I then took another test for the Nuclear Power program. I don't remember the name of that test. However, that one was all math and chemistry if memory serves me right. I got two wrong on the chemistry and none wrong on the math. Pretty good considering my extra curricular activities of the times. I don't think I would fair out that well today.

.

Buck
05-09-2008, 11:54 AM
Been on both sides of the coin and all I can say is that I just lived through one of the worst if not the worst Presidential Administrations in our brief history. I have lost allot of old friends over my views.

Eisnhower was right....we can scare up 400 Billion for War and yet we can't find 5 Billion for childrens healthcare. The average NCO in the Army makes more money and has better healthcare/subsidies than the average teacher of the those kids...

We spend more more on the defense the the REST OF THE WORLD COMBINED and yet we can't beat a bunch of dudes with nothing but small arms and IED's and can't even take care of or own here at home (aka KATRINA)

Welcome to the new world ladies and gents... A state of perpetual war. Where the richer get richer off the sweat of our brows... The only real career chioce for the poor and middle class is Military Service (as long as you don't get injured or seriously hurt and end up in that other Hell The V.A.) And where (no shit) your average kid gets a 4 year education in college and graduates with a load of debt and a future full of mediocre paying jobs...

I get to spend the second half of my life trying to do something about the looming disasters one after the other just over the horizon which have eroded the average citizens way of life since Eisnhower left office before I was born...

You can believe all the lies you wish I don't care but as Tetsen Rinpoche said the other day here in Malibu The only thing you take with you after this life is your spiritual practice.

William Hazen

Ya know when you read something and after it you get this pit in your gut, you slump in your chair, and you go numb because what you read is said so true. That is what happened to me.

I am still numb.

MM
05-09-2008, 02:40 PM
I beg to differ. I took the ASVAB test when I was 17. It was a ridiculously easy test to say the least.



Hi Shaun,
I didn't say the test was hard. :) I scored 99% both times I took it. What I said was that you need to read to take it. If you can't read, you won't get anywhere. If you can't do basic math, you aren't going to fare well on the test either. And, yes, there are minimum scoring levels to get into the military. If you don't score the minimum, you aren't getting into the military.

Didn't know about having to have either a diploma or GED to get into the military either. Might have been a requirement when I went in, but I don't remember. Still, you have to have basic reading, comprehension, and math skills to get either. Unless you cheat. Or you live in California. ;)

Mark

Dan O'Day
05-12-2008, 10:37 AM
Seven years and one trillion dollars later. Over one million people killed through acts of violence and osama bin laden is still running free.

Iraq was a nation run by a dictator. Dictators operate by gaining and maintaining absolute control. No dictator running an established nation with functional operations would ever allow a fundamentalist seperate entity, such as al-queda, to exist within its borders. In the case of Iraq there were/are also complex cultural issues which would forever disallow Saddam from allowing al-queda in Iraq; the Shiite and Suni seperation being only one of these.

The American weapons inspector working for the UN mission who spent seven years monitoring Iraq, Scott Ritter, stated unequivocably that Saddam had no WMD's. The Bush administartion ignored him as they ignored Hans Blix.

The Bush administration also ignored Ambassador Wilson who discounted the claims of a manufactured intelligence report stating Saddam was seeking uranium from an African nation to enrich for nuclear weapons construction. In addition to ignoring Wilson, Dick Cheney committed treason by outing Wilson's wife, Valerie Plame, to the conservative press as a CIA agent. This was done to punish Wison for speaking out. The faulty intelligence report Wilson spoke out against was later roundly admitted to be erroneous.

The entire mideast strategy of the bush administration has been based not on any act of terror by al-queda or allegations of Iraqi WMD's. It has all been based on an ultra right wing think tank created manifesto entitled Project for a New American Century.

The manifesto, like all of its kind through the ages which promote a small ruling elite's attempts to control their fellow humans en masse, is seeped in hubris and thus is doomed to failure; though not without causing much tragedy along the way.

The United States Military has been disrespected and abused by the bush administration; an administration which has at its helm a proven AWOL offender from the Texas Air National Guard and in the position of vice president a man who chose deferment after deferment to stay out of any service during Vietnam.

The bush administration has absolutely no concern for the type of combat scenario they have forced upon the hundreds of thousands of troops who serve/have served in Iraq. A scenario where to protect oneself and one's buddies one must often kill innocents since there are no clear lines of who is who and what is what with regard to enemies and armaments.

It is very common for a returning soldier to experience grave difficutlies in assimililating back into society after having experienced such events.

The bush administration has grossly violated the public trust at every turn and quite frankly I am very surprised a ranking commander within the US military has not yet initiated an act to challenge bush's supposed legal, ethical and/or moral right to serve as commander in chief.

By continuing this war in Iraq the bush administration does accomplish one very important thing, however. Whenever the military is used and people are dying it becomes very difficult to speak out against the grain. This is one of the primary tools of despots through the eons. It is one very effective method in keeping the masses divided and thus, conquered.

Though I believe today there is a growing awareness of the extreme folly of bush's war and it has become much easier for people to publicly express their concerns, though the corporate media does not yet pay enough attention to it for fear of not giving us enough on Brittany Spears, I guess.

OK...can I tell you how I really feel now?

Thankfully through our history humanity has developed many programs of self enrichment and unity of which aikido is but one, to counter the madness and insanity waged upon us by ourselves.

May we all prevail in that ageless battle.

dragonteeth
05-12-2008, 02:29 PM
Sorry but today's military is way too high tech to be the last refuge of the illiterate. I know a teenager who was not able to pass the ASVAB (scored a 40) and was turned down flat despite his high school diploma, no waivers available even for the sanitation crew jobs. The younger illiterate folks I have met have gone into landscaping, cooking, janitorial/housekeeping, and construction labor. However, they are permanently stuck at the bottom rung of those ladders without being able to read.

In addition, if someone is coming from a disadvantaged background and has crappy credit, they may not be able to get a security clearance which will certainly keep them out of service. The folks I know who have gone under waivers have gotten them for age, weight, eyesight, petty crime, juvenile records, or minor illicit drug use.

I support the troops no matter what, and the strain they are under is incredible. I won't argue whether we should be in Iraq or not, but I do think it would have been a lot more effective and a lot easier on our forces had we truly finished the job in Afganistan first rather than fighting a two front war. I shudder to think of what it would be like should someone sitting in a comfy chair inside the beltway decide we need to go play in Iran's or Syria's sandbox too. That might very well necessitate a real draft, not just the back-door draft that stop-loss has become.

George S. Ledyard
05-13-2008, 01:17 AM
Been on both sides of the coin and all I can say is that I just lived through one of the worst if not the worst Presidential Administrations in our brief history. I have lost allot of old friends over my views.

Eisnhower was right....we can scare up 400 Billion for War and yet we can't find 5 Billion for childrens healthcare. The average NCO in the Army makes more money and has better healthcare/subsidies than the average teacher of the those kids...

We spend more more on the defense the the REST OF THE WORLD COMBINED and yet we can't beat a bunch of dudes with nothing but small arms and IED's and can't even take care of or own here at home (aka KATRINA)

Welcome to the new world ladies and gents... A state of perpetual war. Where the richer get richer off the sweat of our brows... The only real career chioce for the poor and middle class is Military Service (as long as you don't get injured or seriously hurt and end up in that other Hell The V.A.) And where (no shit) your average kid gets a 4 year education in college and graduates with a load of debt and a future full of mediocre paying jobs...

I get to spend the second half of my life trying to do something about the looming disasters one after the other just over the horizon which have eroded the average citizens way of life since Eisnhower left office before I was born...

You can believe all the lies you wish I don't care but as Tetsen Rinpoche said the other day here in Malibu The only thing you take with you after this life is your spiritual practice.

William Hazen

Take a look at War is a Racket by Major General Smedley D. Butler, the most decorated Marine in history.
War is a Racket (http://lexrex.com/enlightened/articles/warisaracket.htm)