There's an editorial in the New York Times this morning about cutting military pay and benefits so the military can absorb the coming cuts without cutting substantial weapons systems.
Some of you have read a lot of carping from me about "the other 1% problem," the fact that about 1% of our population now fights our wars, and we don't hesitate to involve them in stupid and endless wars because, after all, they volunteered.
I cannot improve on a comment under the editorial signed by one Judy Allen from Beaumont, Texas, who in this comment makes me proud to claim her as a Texan:
My husband is a 33-plus year veteran who retired as a Master Sergeant from service in the U.S. Army and the Texas Air National Guard.Ms. Allen is right. We have a 1% problem in who calls the political shots and another 1% problem in who gets to go to war. President Bush II started a new tradition that says now we can go to war without even paying for it on the books...or, rather, we'll put in on the cuff so there's no immediate pain and make it up later by cutting Social Security and Medicare.
Sure, cut our retirement, deny us benefits; who are we?
We don't underperform fraudulent contracts and have a consistent record of cost-overruns, for which we are regularly rewarded with new contracts in 7 to 8 figures.
We aren't or weren't working on a project which the military decided wasn't needed, but which Congressional representatives decided must continue anyway because it benefitted their district.
Don't touch any of those expenses -- No, No, No.
The ordinary serving military are ripe for the cuts; who cares what they think about getting kicked anyway?
Some of them are still in harm's way.
If I could speak to them, I would tell them:
Put down your weapons, turn those ships around, demand immediate return to the states and walk away from whatever you were doing for the U.S.
Those in this country with their hands on the till don't care about what you endure, just so long as they don't have to go or send their kids to serve.
As a good friend said to my husband during Thanksgiving dinner, he resented that our medical care was paid for by his tax dollars.
(We did nothing to deserve it, obviously.)
That's a good tea-party Republican for you.
My husband was aghast; he returned home disgusted.
This country is being destroyed from within by partisan stupidity paid for by the 1 percent.
Bring back the draft, and the 98% who neither call the shots nor go to war won't stand for perpetual war any more. The Vietnam debacle finally ended when too many Americans had to face the prospect summed up so neatly by Country Joe McDonald:
Be the first one on your block
to have your boy come home in a box!