Monday, June 15, 2009


Usually I write a post and sit on it for at least a week. That has seemed to work out well for me in the past. It allows me to refine it and not be such a slave to the moment. Sometimes they get trashed as a result of that week. This time however, I have ignored my usually prudent methods and am just sending this one straight out.

Someone will be offended.

So in my adventure here with the armed forces of the as yet un-named European country I have become friends with an ex-pat from a different un-named European country. It is a somewhat strange thing to me to get to a point, as this guy did, where your country stops being what it once was, what you want it to be, and you feel the need to move on.

As he put it the politicians took his once great (mostly economically) country and ran it into the ground with leftist policies. His country once was productive and prosperous. Now it is a welfare state where the government controls nearly all aspects of society and the entire country is in steep decline. It is possessed by this attitude that the greater good should be the primary focus of all ventures, public or private. It is absorbed in the mentality that to seek a profit or to be successful is an evil venture that causes the unwashed masses to remain extensively downtrodden and oppressed.

As I am knee deep in Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged I see that the country I used to know as America is headed that way. My dad brought up the same sentiment a few months ago at the beginning of all this and I somewhat dismissed the thought as premature and over-reactionary. I'm beginning to agree with him though.

I love America. I have spent the last 15 years of my life in servitude to her and would give my life should she require it. Having said that I see our country on the brink of the point of no return. I fear that this current wave of government expansion as one way, a ratchet type effect so to speak. In other words the wheel can turn to the left but the only hope the right has is to stop the turning for a short time.

I don't mean to sound doom and gloomy but that's how I see it right now. Maybe my perspective is skewed because we are in the midst of it and it's really not all that bad. I can't help but feeling that's not the case.

So I wonder, in five years when it's time to retire will I still see America as beyond hope or will things change? I tell you what, if things keep up like this I could see myself in the same position as my friend here who found himself and his ideals deserted by his own country.

It pains me to face that reality. I hope that it does not come to that. I hope that our country wakes up and elects politicians who believe in the free market and individual responsibility and not ones who's sole measure of experience lies in their ability to give a good speech. As it stands now I could easily see myself moving on and living abroad.

But were would I go? It seems to me that America is the last bastion of conservative principles, and that is rapidly slipping away. Our most liberal politicians would be considered pretty right wing by European standards. Someone once told me that Australia is a pretty conservative place. I haven't looked into it but I know their immigration policies are pretty stringent. A friend told me once that New Zealand, although a haven of social programs, is far enough out of the way and small enough that it's not such a big deal. Not too sure about that one though.

Oh well, the way I see it is America has about 5 years to straighten up and fly right. Otherwise my options are to fight the changes I see or just give up on her altogether. I'd rather not have to make that choice.

Your thoughts?

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Ho Hum

As promised folks,

This post by SFC B got me thinking about this tonight. There is so much wrong with this site it's not even funny. I've become somewhat of a connoisseur of the anti-war/recruiting movement's websites since I got into this business. You almost have to. If you pay enough attention to them you will find that the negative (read - call me a baby killer) things people say about you will almost always be right out of the anti-war/recruiting talking points on these websites. For instance watch the news or read a story on RECRUITING and you will almost always hear them refer to it as RECRUITMENT. Maybe it's just me but that word has a much more negative ring to it than "Recruiting."

But anyway what I was getting to was that almost all of their arguments are selfish. You may die. You might not get the college money they promised you. You might not get the job they said you would. etc. etc. etc. Me. Me. Me. Isn't the most important thing about service just that. SERVICE. In my experience as a recruiter most of the people that join do so mainly for that reason. Sure they like the idea of the college money or the skill training but those almost seem like justifications to their parents or even to themselves to go ahead and serve. You other recruiters out there. How many people who actually joined and shipped joined just to get a cash bonus. It seems to me that the college fund and the bonuses more often than not just get someone to either sign a longer contract or pick a job they might otherwise not have or pick the Army over another service (the last one very rarely.)

There is a reason for all of that. All of the top sales people in America will tell you that very few people buy for logical reasons. The vast majority of people buy for emotional reasons. Don't get me wrong, I'm not a salesman nor do I think recruiters should be. The point is they make this big life decision to serve based off of emotional reasons. Which is also why the anti-war crowd choose not to serve and why they base their decision on such flimsy arguments as this.

Sometimes I just wish there was a way to get to these people and explain why their arguments are just plain wrong and sometimes based completely on outright lies. Like if I could just bust through the wall of their organization like The Incredible Hulk or something and re-educate them and then hijack their servers that publish this crap. But then I remember that logic means so little when it comes to this issue. I think it's almost like the last presidential election. The media kept telling us there were all of these "undecided" people out there. I don't know about you but I couldn't find one person who intended to vote yet didn't know who they were going to vote for. I think this issue is such a polarizing one that for me to even try to convince someone that there opinion might be wrong would be a futile waste of oxygen. Just like it would be for them to try and convince me that I'm wrong.

So where does that leave me? In the same place I started when I began this thought. I guess I just have to chalk it up that there are a whole lot of selfish people out there who have no qualms about being selfish and intend to pass that ideal off to their children. Then there are people like this who intend to pass it on to as many other peoples children as they can.

So what can we do? There are organizations like the Joe Foss Institute that try to encourage young people to serve their country. We can support them. If you know someone of military age then you can let them know that it is a noble and worthy profession. Aside from that I think I am doing all that I can.

"Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more" Henry V - Shakespeare