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Tue Feb 19, 2013, 08:11 PM

 

I don't feel proud of our behemoth military might

Sorry, I must be a bad American. I don't feel a surge of pride when I see our big bad aircraft carriers sailing manfully around or our sleek attack jets or helicopters raining destruction down on the "evil-doers". I once was like that, an English guy was visiting and I said that we (the United States) can kick any countries ass if we want to, and that is one reason my country was so great. I was in my early 20s, young and dumb. Now I have changed and I see it totally differently.

I see our gigantic, ridiculous military power as an embarrassment, not a strength. All that money was wasted and could have gone to much better things and areas, oh say like, human welfare or social areas or scientific research or medical research or energy technology research etc etc etc. Yet it never stops, the military machine marches on, what a kick-ass country we live in!

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Reply I don't feel proud of our behemoth military might (Original post)
quinnox Feb 2013 OP
cantbeserious Feb 2013 #1
kairos12 Feb 2013 #5
quinnox Feb 2013 #8
kairos12 Feb 2013 #2
Ilsa Feb 2013 #3
Confusious Feb 2013 #27
Luminous Animal Feb 2013 #28
REP Feb 2013 #4
Arugula Latte Feb 2013 #6
OceanEcosystem Feb 2013 #9
Bigmack Feb 2013 #14
OceanEcosystem Feb 2013 #20
Bigmack Feb 2013 #34
Arugula Latte Feb 2013 #35
quinnox Feb 2013 #10
Puzzledtraveller Feb 2013 #32
Warpy Feb 2013 #7
jeff47 Feb 2013 #11
dreamnightwind Feb 2013 #12
jeff47 Feb 2013 #21
dreamnightwind Feb 2013 #23
jeff47 Feb 2013 #31
dreamnightwind Feb 2013 #33
sir pball Feb 2013 #19
dreamnightwind Feb 2013 #13
Bigmack Feb 2013 #15
alarimer Feb 2013 #16
Brigid Feb 2013 #17
Llewlladdwr Feb 2013 #18
quinnox Feb 2013 #22
Llewlladdwr Feb 2013 #25
quinnox Feb 2013 #26
EastKYLiberal Feb 2013 #36
Tierra_y_Libertad Feb 2013 #24
donheld Feb 2013 #29
Scuba Feb 2013 #30

Response to quinnox (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 08:14 PM

1. The Most Honest 3 Minutes In Television

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Response to cantbeserious (Reply #1)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 08:20 PM

5. Thanks. Love that. Reminds me of the movie Bullworth.

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Response to cantbeserious (Reply #1)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 08:26 PM

8. exactly. that basically sums it up

 

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Response to quinnox (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 08:17 PM

2. Most people would be surprised to know the defense budget has essentially doubled since 2001.

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Response to quinnox (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 08:17 PM

3. Like it or not,

We belong to what is sometimes seen a a "bully club."

It could be worse. I saw an email petition from Donald Trump wanting us to take and pillage from any country we invade. The idea originally was to recover our cost of war with Iraq's oil. But why wouldn't this also mean, "enslave their children," or "rape their women"?

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Response to Ilsa (Reply #3)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 01:40 AM

27. No, it's "rape and pillage"

as the pirates said.

pil·lage
/ˈpilij/
Verb
Rob (a place) using violence, esp. in wartime.
Noun
The action of pillaging a place or property, esp. in wartime.

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Response to Ilsa (Reply #3)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 01:41 AM

28. Um. We did propose paying for the war in Iraq by pillaging it's resources...

It was presented as a cost neutral war. Yay!

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Response to quinnox (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 08:17 PM

4. I live near an Air Force base; I feel intense annoyance as they fly over with afterburners on

But no, the machinery of war gets a big "meh" from me, yet I do feel something like gratitude? maybe for all the young people who volunteer, for whatever reason - money for school, lack of jobs, patriotism - to be cannon fodder. I just wish the old men playing "Army" wouldn't throw away those lives so casually, oftentimes under flimsy pretenses to try out their new toys.

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Response to quinnox (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 08:22 PM

6. And yet even here on DU many people will jump down your throat if you dare question

the tremendous WASTE of money and lives that is the U.S. military and the U.S. military-industrial complex.

When was the last time the U.S. military was used for good? World War II is the obvious answer, and there might have been a few good limited actions here and there, but since 1945 it has primarily been used for ill.

The whole thing sickens me to my core.

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Response to Arugula Latte (Reply #6)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 08:26 PM

9. I think all of those humanitarian interventions were good.

 

Delivering food and assistance to those in need sounds like a good thing to me.


I think the intervention on Kuwait's behalf in 1990-1991 was good.

I think preventing a possible North Korean and/or Chinese takeover of South Korea in the 1950s was good.

I think fighting against Somali piracy was and is a good thing.

I think helping to prevent a major outbreak of war in Europe during the Cold War was good.




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Response to OceanEcosystem (Reply #9)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 11:11 PM

14. I dream of the day...

When the US is responsible for things like...

"Pinpoint, surgical food drops" to drought-stricken areas.

"Marines go in to protect women and children"

"Crowds cheer as US troops arrive to help refugees"

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Response to Bigmack (Reply #14)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 12:01 AM

20. Already happened numerous times.

 

Check out American humanitarian aid by the US military to Japan in the wake of the 2011 tsunami.


And American humanitarian aid, by the US military, in the wake of the 2004 south Asian tsunami.


And American humanitarian aid, by the US military, dropping supplies to the Kurds in the 1990s.


And American humanitarian aid, by the US military, to Pakistan in the wake of the 2005 Pakistan earthquake.


And American humanitarian aid, by the US military, to Turkey in the wake of the 2011 Turkey earthquake.

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Response to OceanEcosystem (Reply #20)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 02:30 PM

34. Oh... well then...

... that must be why they love us everywhere we go!

When the world thinks "US military".. the first thing they think of is "humanitarian aid".

Not taking away from the efforts of our military people, but if we put the effort into humanitarian aid that we put into droning civilians and generally being a bull in a china shop, we'd be the leader of the world.

In a good way.

(I have a certain amount of experience in helping the villagers and then burning the village down.)

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Response to OceanEcosystem (Reply #20)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 02:37 PM

35. That's great, but think of the tens and tens of thousands of innocents who have been slaughtered

in our name. Think of how that would look if you put them all together in one place. Little Vietnamese children, little Iraqi children, old people, mothers, fathers, maimed and slaughtered for the US of A. And why?

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Response to Arugula Latte (Reply #6)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 08:27 PM

10. yup

 

I fully agree

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Response to Arugula Latte (Reply #6)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 10:14 AM

32. You need to get on board, need I remind you

President Obama has a (D) behind his name?

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Response to quinnox (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 08:23 PM

7. I think "there goes my health insurance, my stolen wages"

We're all being robbed to support an imperial military that benefits only the rich, and the rich have abdicated their responsibility for supporting it and thrown it all onto our shoulders.

Time to shrug.

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Response to quinnox (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 10:06 PM

11. Just wanted to point out

scientific research or medical research or energy technology research

DoD is one of the only entities in the US that will do basic research on these subjects.

The glory days of Bell Labs are long gone, and we won't pay NASA or NIH to do the research. So we pay the DoD to do it.

Sure, having other entities do the research would be better, and not include the overhead of things like aircraft carriers. But lots of DoD-funded research ends up being very helpful on those subjects. Like this whole "Internet" thing the DoD invented.

Unfortunately, when people talk about DoD cuts, they rarely have much of an effect on the "operational" side of the DoD. And nobody's willing to add the DoD cuts to other agencies.

Cut a couple carriers, and send 25% of the money to DARPA.

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #11)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 11:00 PM

12. It would be much better

"Sure, having other entities do the research would be better"

Not anything on which to defend the MIC, IMHO. Oh yeah, it's also a jobs program! I hate that one, too. There are infinitely better ways to employ people.

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Response to dreamnightwind (Reply #12)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 12:19 AM

21. There are theoretical ways that are better

They have no prayer of passing Congress.

So yes, there are better jobs programs. But we need a jobs program now, with the Congress we have. Not after 2016, or even more likely 2020 when we can dump the Republican majority in the house.

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #21)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 12:34 AM

23. Here's one: pay those people to sit home and do nothing - nt

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Response to dreamnightwind (Reply #23)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 09:40 AM

31. Isn't that what we already do? I guess they're making speeches instead of sitting home (nt)

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #31)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 01:36 PM

33. I meant the military, not the Congress. - nt

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #11)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 11:46 PM

19. DARPA is one of the only places where failure is expected

They're doing so much completely outrageous, bleeding-edge, downright awesome stuff (most of which doesn't really involve new ways to kill people) that failure isn't just tolerated - if most of your projects aren't complete flops, You're Doing Something Wrong.

That being said, ~33% cut in mil spending, from the operational side, is a damned good idea. Do we really need EIGHT carriers?

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Response to quinnox (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 11:02 PM

13. Thanks for this OP!

Can't be said enough. If we could amplify this message enough, it might catch on in the public consciousness. We have a rare opportunity to do so in this time of large budget deficits and proposed spending cuts.

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Response to quinnox (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 11:12 PM

15. Neither did Marine Generals Smedley Butler and David M. Shoup. Look 'em up. nt

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Response to quinnox (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 11:18 PM

16. I agree wholeheartedly.

I've always been uncomfortable with displays of military might, like airshows. Yes, there is a certain wow factor, but the cheerleading and all that I could do without.

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Response to quinnox (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 11:23 PM

17. I feel exactly the same way.

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Response to quinnox (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 11:34 PM

18. How do you feel about the 700,000+ civilian employees of the Department of Defense...

who are slated to take a 20% reduction in pay starting in April?

Does that make you proud?

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Response to Llewlladdwr (Reply #18)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 12:21 AM

22. Its a start

 

Much more cuts need to be done though.

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Response to quinnox (Reply #22)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 01:25 AM

25. I see.

Well, thank you very much for your support. I'll explain to my family that we need to give up even more.

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Response to Llewlladdwr (Reply #25)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 01:36 AM

26. I knew you wouldn't like my answer

 

Give me a break, no pity from me for the defense industry. I think you guys have gotten enough hundreds of billions every year. I could say in reply, to make my point stark and colorful, that when World War 2 ended, a lot of concentration camp guards lost their jobs. But that shouldn't have prevented the ending of World War 2. No, I'm not comparing the defense industry to Nazi concentration camp guards. I'm just making a larger philosophical point that maybe folks in certain jobs could do other things rather than help make bigger and badder weapons or manage soldiers or be part of the war machine and so on.

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Response to Llewlladdwr (Reply #18)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 02:42 PM

36. It's a tragedy. NO budget cuts should be done that way.

 

It needs to be in small, incremental steps like the President suggested.

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Response to quinnox (Original post)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 12:38 AM

24. We're not really killing milions of people....we're helping them..whether they want us to or not.

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Response to quinnox (Original post)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 01:45 AM

29. +1

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Response to quinnox (Original post)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 07:31 AM

30. ...

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