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Re: draft or national service?
Old 09-12-2005, 03:53 PM   #21
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Re: draft or national service?

The military's a ripoff if you ask me.* Join only for charitable reasons, to help out/defend your country.* Outside of that, you can make just as much money in the civilian life, with the exception that your life isnt at stake, and you dont pseudo sell your soul to the devil (give control of your life away).

I was an AFA cadet for about 4 months.* The experience just sucked, to be honest and blunt about it. For about 2 weeks, they begged me to stay trying to convince me the grass wasnt greener on the other side. Oh yes it was; much much better than the so-called elite military school (or one of them anyway).
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Re: draft or national service?
Old 09-12-2005, 04:31 PM   #22
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Re: draft or national service?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Martha
I really like this idea as well, despite Brewer's comments. Potential to be a great equalizer.
I like it too, but I'd be against it, because the government would turn it into garbage. I want the government to spend less. Why? I've said it before - because ultimately, most things they do turn into the DMV.

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Re: draft or national service?
Old 09-12-2005, 05:55 PM   #23
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Re: draft or national service?

If the gummit involves us in a war, it should be justifiable enough to entice patriotic Americans to join...

Fav DMV story: when I first moved to Texas, I went to DMV to apply for Tx drivers license. I filled out the form, with the blue Bic pen on the table with the forms. I stood in line for 45 minutes or so, and upon reaching the window, was told the form had to be filled out in BLACK ink...
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Re: draft or national service?
Old 09-12-2005, 06:24 PM   #24
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Re: draft or national service?

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Fav DMV story: when I first moved to Texas, I went to DMV to apply for Tx drivers license. I filled out the form, with the blue Bic pen on the table with the forms. I stood in line for 45 minutes or so, and upon reaching the window, was told the form had to be filled out in BLACK ink...
I took my 78-year-old Irish mother to Immigration (INS) to (finally) become a U.S. citizen. We entered a room with a counter full of clerks at the far end, and a maze of velvet ropes winding back and forth across the room -- the kind that you see at Disneyland, etc. to manage VERY long lines of people.

Because we got there VERY early to avoid the crowds we were the first ones in. Rather than snake back and forth across the room a couple of dozen times I ducked under the ropes.

"Go back and do that RIGHT!" shouted one of the clerks behind the counter. "If you can't follow directions you can't become a U.S. Citizen!"

"I'm already a citizen," I informed him. "See this little white-haired old lady here? SHE'S the one you get to abuse today, not me!"

Unbelieveable.

This was actually more funny than upsetting -- he didn't scare me and my English-speaking mother was well able to take care of herself in any case. But I can just imagine what some poor, limited-English, LEGAL immigrants are subject to in the process of getting their green cards / citizenship.

Next, we went upstairs to pay $90 to the cashier -- no credit cards or checks accepted. We scraped up the money between us and paid. The elderly woman behind us needed to pay the same amount but only had $20 bills. Too bad -- no change given, even though WE had forked over $90 in small bills just seconds earlier.

You've just got to shake your head...

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Re: draft or national service?
Old 09-12-2005, 09:44 PM   #25
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Re: draft or national service?

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Originally Posted by brewer12345
Nords, I sincerely hope you are right, but I cannot help but think that if the US gets dragged onto or starts another conflict that is more than a minor squabble, the existing military won't be able to handle it without either redeploying resources from Iraq or conscription. I suspect that it would be a political decision which course to take, not a military one.
Well, arguably redeploying resources from Iraq (Afghanistan, Bosnia, Korea, Germany, Okinawa) can't be a bad thing. It'd force the national command authorities to decide what "priorities" are really important. We used to call the strategy "Fight, fight, win, win" or "Fight, hold, win, fight, win" or "Europe First!" or something like that...

My spouse can attest that much of PACOM's current efforts are obsessed focused on not getting into any more schoolyard scuffles. We're heavy on diplomacy & foreign aid, baby...

In his book "It Doesn't Take A Hero", Norman Schwarzkopf tells how in 1988 his CENTCOM staff was updating the contingency plan for containing Iraq. The powers that be declared the plan good and in 1989 directed that it be placed in motion. That involved wiping slick the current computer database of who goes where with what and reloading the new database. Right after the "wiping" but just before the "reloading", Saddam decided to holiday in Kuwait. You can imagine the logistics chaos that ensued. "Help" was all over CENTCOM and looking over both their shoulders.

So today the military fights & dies by the TPFDD acronym. (I'm three years into retirement so I'm not sure that I'm still spelling it right, or even calling it by its correct name.) The big computer database essentially says "To do THIS, you must have THESE troops with THAT stuff on THOSE ships & planes over HERE by THEN." Donald Rumsfeld has sincerely regretted forcing Ric Shinseki into retirement over the last TPFDD debate, so the next time someone asks for a new wag the dog war the JCS will respond "OK, what do you want us to give up?" and cooler heads will prevail. In a way the decision will indeed be political. Because there ain't much military logistics options left.

Quote:
Originally Posted by brewer12345
If it were a mandatory 2 year military service term, you would also have a mass exodus of people like me to Canada.* I imagine that many of my ilk are very well educated and do high value-added labor, this would probably be pretty painful as well.
Maybe I'm being oversensitive, but did you just propose having the U.S. invade Canada and use our well-educated high-value-added labor to take over their economy? Who'd be feeling the pain here?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Laurence
I could entertain the idea if there were choices on the mandatory service. For example, if you could do Armed Services, Peace Corp. or Americorp. or other related services of your choice, that might work. But you can't have deferalls for the wealthy and/or connected.
Robert Heinlein's book "Starship Troopers" (the version without Denise Richards) took place in a society where you became a citizen and earned the right to vote ONLY by completing military service. Otherwise you were just a member of the worker class who got no respect. I think that concept would be great if it included public service like the Peace Corps or Americorps. But what would the young Latter-Day Saints think of being required to do both govt service and a religious mission? "Render unto Caesar" indeed...
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Re: draft or national service?
Old 09-13-2005, 01:40 AM   #26
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Re: draft or national service?

I have an idea. Any publicly elected official who has voted (or publicly stated his view in electioneering etc) in favour of entering into a conflict should AUTOMATICALLY go to the front of any draft list. That should get the politicos talking to resove problems instead of putting the waggons in a circle and calling in the cavalry.

Personally, I think anything other than a volunteer armed force is an anathema to freedom, democracy and civilised society.
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Re: draft or national service?
Old 09-13-2005, 07:08 AM   #27
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Re: draft or national service?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nords
Maybe I'm being oversensitive, but did you just propose having the U.S. invade Canada and use our well-educated high-value-added labor to take over their economy?* Who'd be feeling the pain here?

Robert Heinlein's book "Starship Troopers" (the version without Denise Richards) took place in a society where you became a citizen and earned the right to vote ONLY by completing military service.* Otherwise you were just a member of the worker class who got no respect.* I think that concept would be great if it included public service like the Peace Corps or Americorps.* But what would the young Latter-Day Saints think of being required to do both govt service and a religious mission?* "Render unto Caesar" indeed...
I think I wasn't clear. If the US imposed mandatory military service for all citizens, I would be emigrating as quickly as possible, most likely to Canada. I don't think I would be the only one, and I suspect that most of the emigrees would be highly educated, very high value-added workers. The brain drain would not be a plus for the US.

Hey, I am a working stiff now and I still don't get any respect.
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Re: draft or national service?
Old 09-13-2005, 08:29 AM   #28
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Re: draft or national service?

I used to say "If you gotta have a draft, draft the old pharts." Now that I am one, that doesn't seem like a good idea.
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Re: draft or national service?
Old 09-13-2005, 09:58 AM   #29
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Re: draft or national service?

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Originally Posted by Eagle43
I used to say "If you gotta have a draft, draft the old pharts."* Now that I am one, that doesn't seem like a good idea.*
Eagle 43: We'd be a force to be reckoned with!

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Re: Draft or national service?
Old 09-13-2005, 12:15 PM   #30
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Re: Draft or national service?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ex-Jarhead
We'd be a force to be reckoned with!
Old pharts defending democracy on watch. Ah, that reminds me of a sea story.

One of my old shipmates is a Chief Machinist's Mate nicknamed "Grandpa" because, well, because he is one. He was born in 1941, enlisted in 1958 as a nuclear mechanic, separated in 1966, bummed around for years in a variety of low-end jobs, and rejoined in 1982 as an auxiliary mechanic.

By the time I encountered him in 1992 he was past his prime. He'd spent a few too many years in noisy engine rooms without earplugs and was probably lip-reading. He always spoke in a booming voice, I think because he could hardly hear himself speak. He smoked like a chimney and I'm sure he took some serious REM in his younger days so his night vision was not what it used to be. (I wonder if he was dealing with early symptoms of macular degeneration.) However he was a very enthusiastic guy, easy to get along with, a moderating influence on his division's young hooligans sailors, and a wizard with refrigeration equipment. So we put up with his physical imperfections.

Until one night when we were getting ready to go to periscope depth. The chief petty officers wanted to try him out as Diving Officer of the Watch so he was under instruction with another chief for his first trip to periscope depth. We'd already come up to 150 feet and cleared our baffles but getting up to PD still risks colliding with a quiet surface contact like a sailboat. The DOOW is supposed to coordinate his team to quickly get the sub up to PD during a fairly dangerous time.

When going to PD at night the sub's control room is totally blacked out to preserve the OOD's night vision. The only visual reference is the depth gages (lit in a dark red) for the DOOW's team. The OOD is supposed to keep his eyes on the scope while the rest of the watchstanders call out their reports. The DOOW is supposed to call out the depths as the sub comes shallow so that the OOD can correlate what he's seeing and know when to expect the scope to come out of the water. I started pushing around the periscope, seeing nothing but black at that depth, and ordered Grandpa to come to PD. The control room fell silent. I could tell that we were coming shallower but he wasn't calling out the depths. I heard the other chief whisper "Hey, chief, you're supposed to be calling off those depths." He had to repeat himself to be heard by a functionally deaf guy. Grandpa's response, booming out in the darkness, was "CALL the depths? Heck, I can't even SEE the depths!"

"Uhm, Dive, make your depth 150 feet. Let's regroup and try this again." Grandpa didn't stand watch in the control room anymore, and he retired just before his next physical...

With the insight of a few more years' perspective, I realize he was only seven years older then than I am now. Yikes.

The Navy has stopped letting people stay on active duty forever, like Grace Hopper & Hyman Rickover. I think that's a good thing!
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Re: draft or national service?
Old 09-13-2005, 04:04 PM   #31
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Re: draft or national service?

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Originally Posted by Nords
Woops, you hit my button.*

My point is that Powell's obstinance ain't nothin' compared to the howls of outrage & mutiny you'll hear from the military's flag officers if Congress or the President try to reinstate the draft.*
Not only at the flag level but at the field grade level.* I don't know of anyone that I serve with wanting to see the draft reinstated.* Now don't get me wrong we are getting more busy everyday and doing things that 5 yrs weren't even a possibility but I think things are ok overall.* There is no doubt there would be some good draftees if it occured.* Our force today is so trained, skilled, and talented and yes they are volunteers. Some volunteered for school money, no other options, etc but everyone has the opportunity to excel.* I am constantly amazed at the calibur of people we bring into the military.* The level of professionalism and competency is incredible.* As I do more joint functions I see this across all the services at all rank levels.* There is no service rivalry, no what is best for my group, just a sense to do whatever it takes to get the job done.*

I too shudder at the thought of having to lead/train folks that might not want to be there but if it happens I am sure the folks already in uniform are up to the task.

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Re: draft or national service?
Old 09-15-2005, 02:35 PM   #32
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Re: draft or national service?

Heavy on the foreign aid and diplomacy is right...just returned from Europe and that's what I did - political-military analysis. Nuff said.

As for the draft, most of our senior leaders shudder to think of going back to that - plus the expectations nowadays for recruits is so much higher and would be difficult to meet if we had the draft.

As for old pharts - well, what do you think all those stars are? But as for being in ops, except for a few rogue "I'm a fighter pilot, GD, and I'm going to fly fighters," most were senior executive leaders working/fighting Washington, Pentagon and running back and forth to Congress 'splaining....

I am a big believer in some kind of national service - makes one appreciate their country as well as understand how it works. It's a huge bureaucracy that is hard to start and stop (witness Katrina mess).

Nords, I love the book "Stormship Troopers" - great action and great ideas - hard to believe Heinlein got so weird later on - another great book "Ender's Game"- by Orson Scott Card - just heard him on his audio book talk about how he came up with the idea at 16 and then how he developed it, wrote it and has been working to make it a movie for over 20 years.

Bridget
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Re: draft or national service?
Old 09-15-2005, 03:34 PM   #33
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Re: draft or national service?

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Originally Posted by Tomcat98
There is no service rivalry, no what is best for my group, just a sense to do whatever it takes to get the job done.*
JDW
I heard that along with banishing interservice rivalry the DOD has brought back the Tooth Fairy. Have you run across her?

Ha
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Re: draft or national service?
Old 09-15-2005, 04:46 PM   #34
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Re: draft or national service?

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Originally Posted by HaHa
I heard that along with banishing interservice rivalry the DOD has brought back the Tooth Fairy. Have you run across her? Ha
Tomcat was referring to the military spirit OTHER than the Army-Navy-Air Force football rivalry.
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Re: draft or national service?
Old 09-15-2005, 04:55 PM   #35
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Re: draft or national service?

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Tomcat was referring to the military spirit OTHER than the Army-Navy-Air Force football rivalry.*
Oh Gosh, I didn't realize that.

Ha
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Re: draft or national service?
Old 09-17-2005, 01:21 PM   #36
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Re: draft or national service?

Ed the Gypsy wrote:

Quote:
Are you confident that conscription will not be reinstated? I am not so sure. As I am working out of the country today, I do not have my finger on the pulse and I can't trust anything in this foreign press on the subject. These clowns don't have a clue about reality in a country with a real army doing a real job.
So I can't help but ask....If you feel this way, why did you choose to emigrate somewhere where you must live amidst clowns? Clowns of the worst kind....clowns without Rush Limbaugh or Fox News "fair and balanced" Clowns that only have 1/10 the people per capita locked up as in the US, and don't have a budget deficit. A whole nation of bozos!!!

It must be tough living in a country that places a high value on negotiation, cooperation, and international law, and doesn't appreciate the value of regular bombing of brown people and illegal invasions. I can sure understand why you wouldn't trust CBC for news with those kinds of screwy attitudes..

I'm tempted to say "love it or leave it". No....can't make myself say it for real...just thought it for a fleeting second. But you might want to be careful how long you stay lest those Canadian values infect you or your family
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Re: draft or national service?
Old 09-17-2005, 01:28 PM   #37
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Re: draft or national service?

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Clowns that only have 1/10 the people per capita locked up as in the US...
So you all let 9/10 of your criminals run free on the streets? Maybe all the criminals migrate to the good ole U. S. of A. because that is where all the good stuff worth stealing is located.

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Old 09-17-2005, 01:51 PM   #38
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Maybe all the criminals migrate to the good ole U. S. of A. because that is where all the good stuff worth stealing is located.

Maybe. Then they get into politics or go to work for Haliburton.

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Re: draft or national service?
Old 09-17-2005, 10:21 PM   #39
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Re: draft or national service?

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Originally Posted by brewer12345
Uhuh, but aside from this fuzzy notion, what would this actually accomplish?* All I see is a colossal waste of manpower and a huge cash gummint outlay (all those conscripts would require food, housing, etc.) to accomplish not much beyond the further militarization of our society.* No thanks.

I'm with you on this one, Brewer. There's a warm, fuzzy feeling that would come from all economic classes devoting the same thing -- X months of their lives -- to the country. But the buracracy organization required to pull this off and to actually utilize people's talents in a meaningful way would be hugely expensive. The Devil is in the details on this idea.
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Re: draft or national service?
Old 09-18-2005, 09:57 AM   #40
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Re: draft or national service?

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Maybe.* Then they get into politics or go to work for Haliburton.* *
Same thing...
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