You Are Among The Elite!

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

And In The Left Corner, Wearing The Clown Suit.... William Arkin, whom I have never heard of before. I actually missed this in my semi-isolation over the weekend, but he said this in a web editorial for The Washington Post:

"I've been mulling over an NBC Nightly News report from which a number of soldiers expressed frustration that with opposition to war in the United States.Through every Abu Ghraib and Haditha, through every rape and murder, the American public has indulged those in uniform, accepting that the incidents were the product of bad apples or even of some administration or command order. So we pay the soldiers a decent wage, take care of their families, provide them with housing and medical care and vast social support systems and ship obscene amenities into the war zone for them.and their attitude is that we should in addition roll over and play dead, defer to the military and the generals and let them fight their war. [This] NBC report is just an ugly reminder of the price we pay for mercenary — oops, sorry, — volunteer force."

Let me first say that I have no idea what "obscene amenities" he is talking about. I am proud of my service during the Gulf War I. The only amenity that I remember receiving is ice, and that was only after the war was over. My unit was ordered to deploy the Tuesday before Thanksgiving in 1990, and we arrived in Al-Jubayl, Saudi Arabia on 26 December. On 10 Jan 91, I took a shower, ate breakfast, and headed for "the berm" which was the border between Saudi and Kuwait. The next shower I had was about the third week of March. My recollection has always been 76 days, but it may have been a tolerable 66 days, I am not positive. I wore the same set of desert BDUs from 26 Dec until I returned home at the end of May. Literally, the same set. We only had one. During that time the only amenity I received was a few warm Pepsi-colas and some bootleg Jack Daniels miniatures that a buddy received in a care package.

Anyway, this comment really irritates me. But the worst part is the rant about a decent wage(compared to______?) and how their families are taken care of and they have massive support programs. This is a bad thing? This is something for which they should bow before the nation and be humble?

The thing is, these same things can be said of the welfare state. We provide food, and housing, and employment services, and medical care, and education. We provide tax incentives to employers for hiring from the welfare rolls. The left in this country becomes angry and blue in the face when we attempt to modify and restrict the free ride that so many get with no incentive to pay their own way. How dare we expect them to actually get a job, when the country owes so much for its history of racism and the American evil de jure. They should be allowed peace and dignity.

But the same respect and courtesy is apparently too good for our troops. In my eyes, these guys pay their way. They shouldn't be grateful for their families being able to shop at a commissary, or get medical care while they are serving. WE should be grateful and humbled and in awe that such men and women live. We should be willing to give them more than we already do.

The reality is that if we were building swimming pools then the average guy on the ground would only get to swim in it a couple of times a month. If we built elaborate country clubs the guy on the ground would only get to dine there once a week, and eating dehydrated rations the rest of the time. If we build Jack Nicholaus designed golf courses, the guy on the ground would only get to use it when he had a metal detector to probe for mines and carrying an M-16 to search the rough for his ball.

The reality is that Arkin has enjoyed more relaxation taking his morning shower today than the guy on the ground will get all month. Maybe instead of insulting the troops and trying to embarrass the President, he could use his bully pulpit for something useful, like raising money for college educations for those who died, like Sean Hannity does every year. Maybe he could raise money for medical treatments for our injured heroes.

But I guess Arkin must think that an "amenity" like a prosthetic limb is too much to give.

4 Posts From Readers:

Nicho said...

You mean to tell me that a political commentator made an inflammatory remark that rubbed you the wrong way?

Oh get over it. He's funny.

At least that's been your attitude about other more noteworthy political commentators.

(For the record, Arkin is talking out of his ass and doesn't represent the left in any way shape or form. Got it? That's how it works. When someone from your own party says something despicable, you call them on it. You don't give them a pass.)

Robert said...

He DOES represent the left, as he has been active in wacko causes like Greenpeace and several others which slip my mind at the moment.

I don't think calling our military forces mercenaries because their children are getting medical care is funny.

BB-Idaho said...

"and several others which slip my mind at the moment." How about
"Arkin served in the U.S. Army from 1974-1978, and was an assistant to the Deputy Chief of Staff for Intelligence of the US Commander Berlin. He was engaged in a number of covert intelligence collection projects and was the primary intelligence analyst for the West Berlin command. He has been an adjunct professor at the US Air Force School of Advanced Airpower Studies." Hugh
Hewitts blog 1-31-07. Hard to believe there are patriots on the left also, isn't it? It's all part of living in a democracy...

Seth said...

Arkin's comments coming from a veteran with the record BB cites are even more bizarre. Reminds me just a bit of Jack Murtha, who also turned traitor somewhere along the line.

Freedoms, even in a democracy, can be abused.

Robert --

Spot on; the fact that folks representing the left, who are traditionally more outspoken and downright verbally abusive of the government are so quick to trash the very people who make their continued, highly abused freedom of speech possible says a lot about them. For example, that they are Americans by citizenship and nothing more.

They don't care at all that the enemy watches CNN and other media venues and it boosts their morale and otherwise sends them messages that cause them to hold out, prolong the conflict and kill more American soldiers and Marines. That is about the only resemblance between Iraq and Vietnam.

The left can argue all they want, but they are as responsible for numerous American deaths as are the terrorists.

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