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View Diary: Article 1, Section 8 - Rules of Funding the Army (40 comments)

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  •  Just a reality check point (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    greenearth, goodasgold

    Back in the 1780s, armies were a different sort of creature. Sure, there were professional army types in Europe--but once the war was ove,r a great proportion of Es and Os were mustered out or put on halfpay,. which made it financially difficult to survive unless you were well-heeled (most officers were aristocrats who bought their commissions and promotions), so the end of a war saw many soldiers muster out. Back then, if you could follow orders, shoot a musket and march in a straight lien (we're talkin' Europeans here), you were cannon fodder.

    Today, though, much of our warfare is technical. Yes, we need lots of  grunts, but event he grunts tend to require more training than what the patriots at Valley Forge got (and note that vonSteuben helped whip our ragtag army into some kind of shape). It takes people who know how to repair planes, APCs, and tanks and planes. Itt akes men who know how to drive and fly the vehicles.  It ain't George Washington's army any more.

    And we need to grasp that.  Training a person to work on electronics gear for planes takes boot camp plus a 6-12 month A school.   It's not much shorter for pilots or backseaters.  That is why the military tends to demand 4-6 years out of a recruit--the training is expensive and they want to get their money's worth.

    I can't think of a nation on earth in the first world that doesn't have a standing army--for all the reasons I mentioned above. Sure we have Guard and Reserves but they are as we;ll-trained as the guys who do it every day.  Nor do they (ell, they didn't used to) have the experience either (I've rad somewhere that they have higher losses than regular troops, too).  

    Let's face it: if you had  cancer, and your life depended on your surgeon's skill, would you wan ta guy hwomaybe does the surgery occasionally--or the guy who does it every week? I know where I'd want to go.

    Practical realities DO matter.

    The last time we mixed religion and politics people got burned at the stake.

    by irishwitch on Tue Jan 16, 2007 at 02:57:25 PM PST

    •  Warfare has always been technical. (0+ / 0-)

      Why do you think one of the first rules of war in the Western Culture were:

      No sacking of the carriages and boys.

      IE, don't kill the support crew. They have always had support crews.

      And so for a nation on Earth without a standing army:

      Costa Rica.

      •  I said "First World". (0+ / 0-)

        I don't think Costa Rica qualifies for that status.  It's Third WOrld.

        ANd I DO know the uisual ruels of warfare.  Sadly, none of them ever include "Don't rape the enemy's women."

        My point is that the amount of time it takes to train soemone for modern warfare makes NOT keeping a standing army unrealistic--IF youa re a First Worl;d Nation.

        I am AGAINST thsi war. I would love to see every nation on earth disarm and place grievances before a world court--but that won't happen in my leifetime, or yorus either,a ssuming youa re younger than I am at 57.

        The last time we mixed religion and politics people got burned at the stake.

        by irishwitch on Tue Jan 16, 2007 at 05:33:03 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  "TECHNICAL" as I used it to (0+ / 0-)

        (and as I think you know)  doesn't refer to the Geneva Conventions or their brethren--but to the fact that  we use modern weapons like tanks and planes and missiles  that have a long learning curve before the wielder n becomes competent enough to be of any use.  

        As I started separately,  I have opposed this war since Bush rn up his trial balloons in 2002.  My husband, career Navy, had passed the chief's baord --and turned down the chance to put on anchors, likely make SCPO and serve out what remained of his 30 years for a 75% chunk of a much higher pay grade than what he took--because he didn't want to fight in an illegal, immoral war based on lies.

        Just because I DO understand their qualities of  what it takes to train modern soldier,e ven a grunt, doesn't mean I back Bush. And pretending that there isn't such a long lead time in training is just plain playing ostrich.  If we go back to nothign but muskets or stones and bows and spears, then, hey, no need of a standing army--but I don't think that's likely to happen.

        The last time we mixed religion and politics people got burned at the stake.

        by irishwitch on Tue Jan 16, 2007 at 05:38:20 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

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