Why is it news that some leftist talking head is “uncomfortable” with calling our soldiers “heroes”?
A blogger at The Right Sphere, who noted he is a veteran, wrote that he “can’t quite bring myself to be angry about it.”
Good! Because if someone cares about whether or not he’s called a hero…he’s probably not a hero. Spoiled two-year-olds have no idea of the efforts it takes to keep them alive. Likewise, neither does Chris Hayes. Treat the one much like the other, except with an attitude of amused contempt. Chris is a funny guy!
“I feel uncomfortable about the word hero because it seems to me that it is so rhetorically proximate to justifications for more war. “
And apparently he means it. That’s some serious grammar-density there. Now, you’re probably looking at me thinking, “It’s the cooking vessel calling the water-heater non-light emitting.” But my…admittedly difficult…vocabulary and grammar are for the sake of precision. You can’t write something that can’t be misunderstood, but I feel obligated to try.
(Caveat: obviously I complicate things for fun. My pride in having renamed the lowly switch the “binary-state topology manipulator”? Vast.)
But Chris pulls out complex lingo to disguise a lie, not illustrate the truth. Rhetorically proximate! Let’s see:
I’m uncomfortable with calling firefighters heroes because it’s rhetorically proximate to justifications for more arson.
You see why he said “rhetorically proximate”? Because if he said “nearly” or “almost the same” or even “in the same ballpark” everyone would look at his claim and say, “…um…no, it isn’t.”
Lightning is “rhetorically proximate” to a lightning bug. “Soldiers are heroes” is not rhetorically proximate to “war is good!”
But Chrissy “Wordsmith” Hayes doesn’t worry me at all. This does.
A staggering 45 percent of the 1.6 million veterans from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are now seeking compensation for injuries they say are service-related. That is more than double the estimate of 21 percent who filed such claims after the Gulf War…
Given a universal standard of disability, is it likely that today’s soldiers are getting crippled twice as much? Doesn’t seem likely. I’m not saying they’re not; IEDs and the like are vastly advanced from the 90’s and of course this has been a war of attrition.
But isn’t the entire culture much more wussified than in our youth? Mine, anyway. Many of the precautions are wonderful; if I’d worn hearing protection for my juvenile lawn-mowing business my tinnitus probably wouldn’t exist today.
That said….the West has both wussified itself and instilled a feeling of entitlement in general public. Obviously our soldiers aren’t wussies. In the field, they’re as good or better than ever. But back in entitled America, are they becoming less stoic along with everyone else?
If so, it’s scary.
Obviously, every ex-soldier with a legitimate claim gets aid and relief. And when in doubt…they get aid and relief. We must cut 10/10ths of federal “discretionary spending” before I’d even consider looking at soldiers’ benefits.
And even then, I wouldn’t. Not when the Fed has so much land and treasure to auction off.
If I had to guess, I’d say a lot of it is due to joint damage; lots of infantry action and patrols, and carrying those kinds of loads through bad terrain over those distances… Once met a guy with 82nd Airborne, at that time had two tours in ‘Stan and one in Iraq, and had real problems with knees, back and shoulders. And son has mentioned a number of guys with various problems of that sort.
Would agree with the too heavy load. Now you need 30-40kg of protective gear just because you will run into blast situations. Before it was easier, as most of the time it was just run them down ( a defined antagonist) and shoot at them. Now body armour, rifle, ammo for a shoot out, water, MRE’s, radios, grenades, medkits, tents, and the whole kitchen sink as well.
If I had to carry that I would basically not be able to move. I know SO guys who would never carry that.
Cut 10/10ths of discretionary spending before touching Veteran’s benefits?
All military spending, including Veteran’s Benefits, is DISCRETIONARY spending.
Right now nondiscretionary spending is around 60% of the Federal Budget. Right now Taxes and Revenues to the FedGov cover 60% of the Federal Budget. The remaining 40% of “discretionary” is really “borrowed.”
The FedGov is insolvent, and unless “nondiscretionary spending” is changed (Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid) then y0u could cut the entire Military budget (including Veteran’s Benefits) and still not balance the budget.
Yes. You are entirely right.
I certainly have no expectations of fiscal wisdom, or even responsibility, from the powers that be. And it’s always the same approach, at every level of government. Spend like crazy on non-essentials, then ask budget-balancers why they want to cut police and firefighters. Er…we seldom do. We want to cut everything else.
The place to start cutting, obviously, would be every regulatory agency possible. That would cut costs and energize the private sector simultaneously. The Fed should also have to start selling unnecessary treasures. I’ve proposed starting with the Hope Diamond. If you and I are insolvent, we don’t get to keep our expensive baubles.
Neither, of course, will happen until the entire edifice collapses. And as you say, it wouldn’t make a difference anyway, without “entitlement” reform. Which also won’t come until the collapse.
My issue is a different one. The men fighting in WW2 saw horrors that today have nothing even remotely similar. Nothing since WW2 has been even remotely like that. Vietnam was bad but what the men in the Pacific and in Europe saw and experienced finds no parallels in military history since it happened. This is a simple fact.
And yet, despite this, that generation came home from the war and went back to their normal lives, practically as if nothing happened. Of course there were issues, but when you look at the entire mass of men, and women, who had seen combat, then the number of psychological problems is amazingly small. They came home and had other things on their mind. Their thoughts were focused on more pressing issues than “omg, I killed a Nazi.” The same applies for their opponents. My grandfather came home from the prison camps (which were a million times worse than a thousand Abu Graibs.) He didn’t have time to even remotely think about getting PTSD. He had a country to rebuild. On the other hand, the smaller the wars become, the less intense the overall fighting is, the more advanced the backup for the soldiers is, the more problems arise when they come home.
I’m not saying that the combat in A-stan isn’t intense, but there is no way in hell that it can be even remotely as nagging on your mind as riding a frigging landing craft towards a beach, under constant mortar and artillery fire and then storming that beach, with all its fortifications from positions with little to no cover. Or airdropping behind enemy lines, knowing very well that, wherever you turn, there are thousands of well armed, well trained bastards wanting to kill you, or clinging to a small volcanic island against a frighteningly superior force, or watching literally thousands of tanks converging on your trench with tens of thousands of infantry behind them while thousands of Stalin organs play their tune.
Maybe there is too much care, too much preparation. The massive rise in PTSD certainly points at that. And of course there is too much political correctness, too many ridiculous rules bogging them down from actually fighting with the media screaming at everything a soldier does while the fascist, mass murdering enemy gets a pass every single time.
For example: Back in WW2 neither side showed much hesitation when it came to shooting a church to bits if there were enemies inside it. Today? You can’t just call an air strike on a mosque because there are enemies in it. You have to storm it with your infantry, because someone might piss himself when you just blow it up. The troops on the ground have been abandoned, not only by the usual suspects (the whiny media and fascist loving retards moaning about “American imperialism), but also by the politicians and, yes, their commanders. The entire system is broken.
“Reserves and National Guard made up a greater percentage of troops in these wars than they did in previous ones.”
This is actually a bogus claim. The majority of GIs serving in WW2 were career, reserve or NG. They were civilians who flooded the recruitment offices after Pearl Harbor.
Oh, here’s the difference, something I’ve heard from several US veterans. It was a different war, different times. The US was attacked, though that sounds familiar, doesn’t it? There was a scream that went through the country, sounds familiar too, right? But what came to it? While back in 1941 the Americans stood up and brought out the ugly stick, in 2001 none of this happened, and yet the 2001 attack was significantly worse than Pearl Harbor. How so? Pearl Harbor was a military target. It was absolutely legitimate. Some civilians were killed, yes, but there were just as many civilian casualties from US rounds that were duds or came back down. 9-11 was an attack on a civilian target. And it didn’t take long for the appeasers and political correct crowd to whine. Remember the whole “No blood for oil” BS? The same people who screamed “No blood for oil” were quick to scream for a US military intervention in Uganda just recently (there’s oil in Uganda, btw, and the “acting president” there is just as bad as that Kony fellow.)
10 years later, the whining crowd is in charge. You can’t fight a war under such conditions. If today was 1941, then the US would apologize to fascist Japan for not having the carriers in Pearl so that they could sink them as well. D-Day would never happen, the US would leave the war after the first costly battles in the Pacific and Africa. People would protest and demand negotiations with Hitler and Tojo.
And there is the problem. How many WW2 veterans have protested for ending the war against the German nazis and Japanese fascists during the war? And how many veterans of Iraq are protesting against the war in Iraq? I’ve never heard of anyone in WW2, but against Iraq, many.
Then the politicians come out and whine “We’re not at war with islam!” In 1941 FDR could have said “we’re not at war with fascism in general”, same thing really. Luckily, he didn’t.
There is the problem. If a country becomes pussified, the military will be so too. The fighting capacity of the US military is still great, easily greater than any EU country, but the problem lies much, much deeper. It’s not even Obama who is the problem. He’s just the symptom.
The greatest generation has produced the babyboomers, who are, generally, a bunch of whiny wankers. The whole 1968er “movement” goes back to the boomers. Now the boomers are in charge. The people who spit on Vietnam vets as they came home for the war, who collected money and blood for North Vietnam are now running the country (mind you, the veterans from that war, statistically, have been doing significantly better than their civilian counterparts, the suicide rate, for example, of Vietnam vets is BELOW average.) Their offspring, which is my generation, is generally focused on entitlement. And the generation after us? Let me just tell you, it’s not the praised Age of Aquarius, it’s the Age of Entitlement and Whine.
I’m not saying there shouldn’t be help for veterans. Hell no. But the entire system needs to be redone. It’s utterly broken, just like everything else. The entire government system is broken and not just over there.
We’ve reached a point where I actually understand the writing of special attack force pilots in their secret diaries. Many of these boys were the brightest Japan ever brought forth, and the fascists sacrificed them for nothing. There’s a recurring theme in their diaries: the dream of the utter destruction of the Japan they knew, and rebuilding the country as something better.
From all I’ve heard about the trench warfare of WWI, it sounds like it can hold its own with any horror of war. But when you get to these extreme cases, I guess it’s more of a personal reaction than a universal one. Some soldiers who got lifelong yips from the trenches might have slogged through Pacific jungles with much
more easeless unease.