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  #251  
Old 05-24-2019, 05:27 PM
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Originally Posted by HMS Irruncible View Post
The interesting thing here is nobody in the "yes" side of this thread is suggesting constraining what people can or can't do. We're just suggesting certain moral judgments under certain circumstances.



In particular I don't expect lawmakers to have enlistment papers ready when they vote to go to war with some country. But when I judge their decision, it matters whether they've served before. It matters whether they were asked to serve and avoided it. It matters whether their decision might cause other people's children to go to war before their own.



And I will continue to express my mystification that conservatives and republicans, enlightened centrists, formerly champions and advocates of the military, in this thread devote such special pleading that they should be able to send others to harm while they themselves recline and say "I prefer others do it for me."
Yep. Thanks, again, for explaining things differently (and probably better) than I did.
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  #252  
Old 05-24-2019, 06:36 PM
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Yep. Thanks, again, for explaining things differently (and probably better) than I did.
Well...hold on a sec. You did say you were trying to use shaming to 'constraining what people can or can't do', to quote HMS Irruncible. That's in fact, if I understand this whole thingy, the point. You can't have it both ways. Either shaming works and it will constrain people and that IS what you are trying to do, or it doesn't, in which case...well, there doesn't seem any point.

I think it's clear that this is exactly the effect you want to have, and that you do want to constrain and shape the discussion by calling people names who don't meet your criteria of who can or can't be advocates for US military intervention.
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  #253  
Old 05-24-2019, 08:02 PM
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Well...hold on a sec. You did say you were trying to use shaming to 'constraining what people can or can't do', to quote HMS Irruncible. That's in fact, if I understand this whole thingy, the point. You can't have it both ways. Either shaming works and it will constrain people and that IS what you are trying to do, or it doesn't, in which case...well, there doesn't seem any point.



I think it's clear that this is exactly the effect you want to have, and that you do want to constrain and shape the discussion by calling people names who don't meet your criteria of who can or can't be advocates for US military intervention.
I don't see it as "constraining", but in any case I described plenty of exceptions that would allow civilian control of the military with no shaming of the leaders.
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  #254  
Old 05-24-2019, 08:28 PM
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Influencing and motivating (potentially, anyway, at most) are not remotely the same as "constraining".

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  #255  
Old 05-24-2019, 09:12 PM
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Influencing and motivating (potentially, anyway, at most) are not remotely the same as "constraining".
I could probably come up with half a dozen examples that I know you would consider to be 'constraining' using the same sort of shaming tactics you are proposing (abortion springs to mind) but there doesn't seem any real point. You are basically handwaving away everything everyone is saying and justifying your stance regardless. I think there is simply a fundamental disconnect that can't be bridged wrt this subject and your OP. To me, it cuts to the heart of our democracy to do what you are proposing and smacks of elitism and license, especially the vague definitions and subjective justifications you are using. C'est la vie. It was an interesting discussion, as these things often are...saying a lot about the posters who responded, regardless of their stance.
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  #256  
Old 05-24-2019, 09:15 PM
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I could probably come up with half a dozen examples that I know you would consider to be 'constraining' using the same sort of shaming tactics you are proposing (abortion springs to mind) but there doesn't seem any real point. You are basically handwaving away everything everyone is saying and justifying your stance regardless. I think there is simply a fundamental disconnect that can't be bridged wrt this subject and your OP. To me, it cuts to the heart of our democracy to do what you are proposing and smacks of elitism and license, especially the vague definitions and subjective justifications you are using. C'est la vie. It was an interesting discussion, as these things often are...saying a lot about the posters who responded, regardless of their stance.
I have no illusion that the tactics I propose can't be (and haven't been) used for evil. Of course social shaming can be a terrible thing, and often has been. But not always -- shaming child molesters is one of the ways our society combats child molestation. I've been advocating that warmongering, at least in the vast majority of cases, should be seen similarly to child molestation -- as beyond the pale for polite society, and totally unacceptable.

No one has even tried to make the argument that shaming child molesters is wrong. If not, then everyone accepts that sometimes shame can be a positive and acceptable force in society. Then what's left is trying to convince me that warmongering isn't as bad as I'm saying that it is -- and some folks have tried to make that argument, but I remain unconvinced.

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Old 05-24-2019, 09:25 PM
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Child molestation was never part of any sort of US mainstream political discussion, so it's a pretty weak example. It was part of public shaming because it wasn't part of any sort of mainstream political discussion and was pretty much looked down on by the majority of society. But gay marriage or just being gay WAS...so was abortion. And that shaming stifled, until fairly recent history, any sort of political discourse. In the same way what you advocate would. Across the board, many things were part of public shaming and the effect was to stifle or constrain political discourse...because of said shaming people couldn't and wouldn't even stand up. Recall the Red Scare era in the 50's. This is what you are advocating. It's not like child molestation, which isn't part of and won't ever be part of any sort of political discourse in the US. Obviously, US military action is, and what you are proposing cuts out a large majority of citizens from being able to participate in that discourse for fear of being labeled coward and shamed publicly. I get that you don't see it that way, but that's what I see and you and the others at least nominally on your side haven't said anything to change my mind...as, obviously, I haven't changed yours. I didn't and don't expect to, and I suspect you don't either.
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  #258  
Old 05-24-2019, 09:29 PM
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Child molestation was never part of any sort of US mainstream political discussion, so it's a pretty weak example. It was part of public shaming because it wasn't part of any sort of mainstream political discussion and was pretty much looked down on by the majority of society. But gay marriage or just being gay WAS...so was abortion. And that shaming stifled, until fairly recent history, any sort of political discourse. In the same way what you advocate would. Across the board, many things were part of public shaming and the effect was to stifle or constrain political discourse...because of said shaming people couldn't and wouldn't even stand up. Recall the Red Scare era in the 50's. This is what you are advocating. It's not like child molestation, which isn't part of and won't ever be part of any sort of political discourse in the US. Obviously, US military action is, and what you are proposing cuts out a large majority of citizens from being able to participate in that discourse for fear of being labeled coward and shamed publicly. I get that you don't see it that way, but that's what I see and you and the others at least nominally on your side haven't said anything to change my mind...as, obviously, I haven't changed yours. I didn't and don't expect to, and I suspect you don't either.
This would bother me if I thought advocating for something like war with Iran was a legitimate political position. But it's not, or at least it shouldn't be considered as such. It should be considered as abominable and unacceptable as a proposal to legalize sex with children, IMO. And those Americans who are in favor of war with Iran might need a rhetorical shock to their system in order to rethink their abominable position.

Of course this is all hypothetical. My proposal is all but certain to go nowhere beyond this message board. But warmongering really is bad and doing terrible things to this country... and if all I've done is get some folks thinking a bit more about how damaging the conventional wisdom about military force for the last few decades has been and could continue to be, then I'll be quite pleased.

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  #259  
Old 05-24-2019, 09:36 PM
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This would bother me if I thought advocating for something like war with Iran was a legitimate political position. But it's not, or at least it shouldn't be considered as such. It should be considered as abominable and unacceptable as a proposal to legalize sex with children, IMO. And those Americans who are in favor of war with Iran might need a rhetorical shock to their system in order to rethink their abominable position.

Of course this is all hypothetical. My proposal is all but certain to go nowhere beyond this message board. But warmongering really is bad and doing terrible things to this country... and if all I've done is get some folks thinking a bit more about how damaging the conventional wisdom about military force for the last few decades has been and could continue to be, then I'll be quite pleased.
Well, again I disagree. War with Iran under some circumstances is, IMHO, a 'legitimate political position'. Saying that it isn't, across the board is...well, it's also a 'legitimate political position'. The thing is, it depends on a lot of factors, just as all wars the US has or might engage in. And our political leadership, regardless of whether they served or have some special dispensation need to be able to discuss it openly. Our citizens do too, to make their feelings on it known to their political leadership...whether you or I agree or disagree with their assertions or conclusions. As it happens, I have made my own thoughts available on this, and I'm happy that I'm able to do so without anyone trying to shame me or actively discourage me from doing so, regardless of my current or past military status.

Yes, it is just a discussion, unlikely in the extreme to ever come to fruition. You've argued your side strenuously, and if I remain unconvinced you obviously did strike a cord with several other 'dopers, and you got a multi-page discussion out of it that was interesting and informative, so you should be happy.
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  #260  
Old 05-24-2019, 09:38 PM
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Well, again I disagree. War with Iran under some circumstances is, IMHO, a 'legitimate political position'. Saying that it isn't, across the board is...well, it's also a 'legitimate political position'. The thing is, it depends on a lot of factors, just as all wars the US has or might engage in. And our political leadership, regardless of whether they served or have some special dispensation need to be able to discuss it openly. Our citizens do too, to make their feelings on it known to their political leadership...whether you or I agree or disagree with their assertions or conclusions. As it happens, I have made my own thoughts available on this, and I'm happy that I'm able to do so without anyone trying to shame me or actively discourage me from doing so, regardless of my current or past military status.

Yes, it is just a discussion, unlikely in the extreme to ever come to fruition. You've argued your side strenuously, and if I remain unconvinced you obviously did strike a cord with several other 'dopers, and you got a multi-page discussion out of it that was interesting and informative, so you should be happy.
Thanks for participating.
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Old 05-24-2019, 09:58 PM
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Just to understand your position, OP, if I advocate for a war that you personally deem to be "needless" or "senseless" or that you otherwise disagree with, theb I should enlist if I am able bodied.

What if the war has vast popular support and/or is one that you personally believe is a just war? Am I then shielded from your scorn if I choose not to enlist yet still support the war?
  #262  
Old 05-24-2019, 10:04 PM
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Just to understand your position, OP, if I advocate for a war that you personally deem to be "needless" or "senseless" or that you otherwise disagree with, theb I should enlist if I am able bodied.

What if the war has vast popular support and/or is one that you personally believe is a just war? Am I then shielded from your scorn if I choose not to enlist yet still support the war?
In all cases, if you find a way to make a significant sacrifice and contribution, then I wouldn't consider you a coward. I might still consider you a warmonger, depending on the circumstances, which would earn you plenty of scorn.
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Old 05-24-2019, 11:12 PM
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This would bother me if I thought advocating for something like war with Iran was a legitimate political position. But it's not, or at least it shouldn't be considered as such. It should be considered as abominable and unacceptable as a proposal to legalize sex with children, IMO. And those Americans who are in favor of war with Iran might need a rhetorical shock to their system in order to rethink their abominable position.

Of course this is all hypothetical. My proposal is all but certain to go nowhere beyond this message board. But warmongering really is bad and doing terrible things to this country... and if all I've done is get some folks thinking a bit more about how damaging the conventional wisdom about military force for the last few decades has been and could continue to be, then I'll be quite pleased.
iiandyiiii, by saying "thank you for your participation" you are scaring away the conversants. It seems that you understand my position, but just so you know I still do not understand your position.

I do not understand how you can support the above quoted text, but deny both 1) that you value security over liberty, and 2) that your argument is assuming the conclusion I want to debate.

Specifically, the conclusion is that society considers a particular military action to be "beyond the pale". By using ad-hominem attacks you are denying society the open debate it deserves according to the principles of liberty. I don't understand your position.

~Max

Last edited by Max S.; 05-24-2019 at 11:15 PM. Reason: minor edits (it's late here)
  #264  
Old 05-25-2019, 05:51 AM
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iiandyiiii, by saying "thank you for your participation" you are scaring away the conversants. It seems that you understand my position, but just so you know I still do not understand your position.

I do not understand how you can support the above quoted text, but deny both 1) that you value security over liberty, and 2) that your argument is assuming the conclusion I want to debate.

Specifically, the conclusion is that society considers a particular military action to be "beyond the pale". By using ad-hominem attacks you are denying society the open debate it deserves according to the principles of liberty. I don't understand your position.

~Max
I don't believe that social shaming - even the worst types of social shaming (assuming there's no legal consequences) - can affect liberty. I believe liberty is about what folks are prevented from doing be force of law, not what they are dissuaded from doing by force if societal disapproval. Social shaming can still be a very bad thing in many circumstances, and harm things like fairness and neighborliness and similar concepts on society.

I'm not sure what you mean by #2 above.

As far as your last paragraph - my position may be dissuading certain arguments, but it's not denying anything, any more than we're denied open debate about sex with children.

My position really is quite simple to understand if you accept (or imagine accepting) my supposition that, in almost all cases, warmongering is as bad as child sex advocacy.
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Old 05-25-2019, 08:36 AM
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By using ad-hominem attacks you are denying society the open debate it deserves according to the principles of liberty. I don't understand your position.
I think I do understand. It's a natural part of outgrowth of iiiiandyiiiii's general approach that debating issues is about who is most moral, according to iandyiiiii. Whoever is purest morally (same basis, according to that poster) wins. It's not about the open debate based on ideas.

It's an increasingly common formula particularly on iiiiiandyii's side of the political spectrum, though the other side has also imitated it more in recent years unfortunately.

Whether it's a good idea for the US to take military action or 'go to war' with Iran is based on whether that's in the best interests of the US and/or the world in general. It's not about any particular person's participation. As it happens it's questionable if there's any real constituency for doing that at this time, but anyway.

That's not to say one can't question US participation in any of the wars it has participated in, including the popular ones viewed as successful (the two tend to go together). War is a terrible thing, there's no reasonable debate about that IMO. And more specifically about the pattern of US involvement in the Mideast in recent decades, criticizing that is definitely not exclusive to either side of the political divide. Intense partisans on either side who worry about more US Mideast involvements or wars have to come to terms with the fact that some elements of the 'morally inferior' other side agree with them.
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Old 05-25-2019, 10:23 AM
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Well...hold on a sec. You did say you were trying to use shaming to 'constraining what people can or can't do', to quote HMS Irruncible. That's in fact, if I understand this whole thingy, the point. You can't have it both ways..
Calling out someone for being insincere or cowardly isn't any kind of constraint on someone else's freedom to speak or act.

It is very much a constraint on someone's ability to speak or act without the consequence of judgment. So this thread continues in typical conservative bizarro-world fashion in which conservatives demand the world be their safe space to act badly and not have to suffer the indignity of hearing others say they're acting badly, and it constitutes persecution if they are not afforded this safe space.
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Old 05-25-2019, 10:30 AM
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It's an increasingly common formula particularly on iiiiiandyii's side of the political spectrum, though the other side has also imitated it more in recent years unfortunately.)
Oh give it a rest. Conservatives have absolutely no problem whatsoever invoking personal cost in every single other area of public debate. This is very familiar to everyone:

Conservative men when the poor suggest higher taxes: "Well of course it doesn't affect YOU, you're too poor to make money, you parasite.

Conservative men which the rich suggest higher taxes: "Well of course it doesn't affect YOU, you have plenty of money to pay, you limousine liberal."

Conservative men when Bolton suggests men of service age should die in Iran: "Hold on buddy, no need to make this personal, let's step back and weigh this on the merits."
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Old 05-25-2019, 11:15 AM
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I think I do understand. It's a natural part of outgrowth of iiiiandyiiiii's general approach that debating issues is about who is most moral, according to iandyiiiii. Whoever is purest morally (same basis, according to that poster) wins. It's not about the open debate based on ideas.



It's an increasingly common formula particularly on iiiiiandyii's side of the political spectrum, though the other side has also imitated it more in recent years unfortunately.



Whether it's a good idea for the US to take military action or 'go to war' with Iran is based on whether that's in the best interests of the US and/or the world in general. It's not about any particular person's participation. As it happens it's questionable if there's any real constituency for doing that at this time, but anyway.



That's not to say one can't question US participation in any of the wars it has participated in, including the popular ones viewed as successful (the two tend to go together). War is a terrible thing, there's no reasonable debate about that IMO. And more specifically about the pattern of US involvement in the Mideast in recent decades, criticizing that is definitely not exclusive to either side of the political divide. Intense partisans on either side who worry about more US Mideast involvements or wars have to come to terms with the fact that some elements of the 'morally inferior' other side agree with them.
I'll disagree with this characterization of my arguments (not surprisingly I think I usually do a good job of arguing stuff on the facts and merits), but I do like all the i's.
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Old 05-25-2019, 12:29 PM
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It’s my opinion that the OP’s opinion that using attempts at public shaming as a method of changing attitudes isn’t worth the breath it uses but my father told me Everybody’s entitled to their own opinion, no matter how ridiculous. About advocacy and opinions, he also learnt me to consider the source.

Concerning a situation in which military action is contemplated, if it’s the correct action then it’s the correct action, no matter the source/their background.

Now you can call me a coward or you can call me a hypocrite
But you doesn't hasta call me Johnson!
As always,
Ray Jay

I’m also a Navy vet (which is only 1 step above the Air Force, which is only 1 step above civilians
  #270  
Old 05-25-2019, 01:07 PM
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In all cases, if you find a way to make a significant sacrifice and contribution, then I wouldn't consider you a coward. I might still consider you a warmonger, depending on the circumstances, which would earn you plenty of scorn.
What is a "significant sacrifice and contribution"? Imagine a WWII scenario that (I suppose) would have your support. Doesn't the country still need accountants, lawyers, farmers, doctors, and teachers? What if I am one of them? Is that good enough or am I a cowardly weakling for not joining the military?
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Old 05-25-2019, 01:35 PM
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What is a "significant sacrifice and contribution"? Imagine a WWII scenario that (I suppose) would have your support. Doesn't the country still need accountants, lawyers, farmers, doctors, and teachers? What if I am one of them? Is that good enough or am I a cowardly weakling for not joining the military?
If you're looking for moral validation, WW2 probably shouldn't be your first stop. Draft classifications were a thing. I think my grandfather would have happily joined the infantry. But he wasn't called to do that because the nation decided that we needed aircraft machinists more than infantrymen. We don't have draft boards anymore, so your choice to serve (or not) only reflects your own needs and values.

Now that I think of it, I think America would benefit greatly for an Israel-style draft, with modifications. Every male between 18 and 50 must serve 4 years. Assume the Air Force and Navy fills their quotas within the first 72 hours of this policy taking effect (which it will). You can only join the Army or Marines. You could be a truck driver or cook, but those specialties will fill up fast.

If we have that kind of draft, men, how do you now feel about going to war with Iran or Venezuela or wherever John Bolton definitely isn't going but still wants to conquer? This is my only point. Legally everyone gets a vote and is entitled to representation. Morally and socially, your opinion is only worth what you personally have at stake.

Could be some folks are playing stealthy, but it seems the like the conservative/centrist men in this thread are batting 0% for being willing to back up their words with action. Like... I was reserve component, combat support, I would be very easily defeated in a dick-measuring service contest. But nobody's even trying.
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Old 05-25-2019, 01:35 PM
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First of all, might I mention that I may have some pretty serious non-serious insults to level at you, mr double i andy double double i, in the pit when I get a chance for “baiting” me into breaking my hiatus.

I started reading this thread without having a strong opinion. I thought you made some good arguments, but so did some of your opponents in the thread. I will say that if I thought that your idea would be in any way effective, then I could easily go along with it, but I see, more than the moral or ethical or “slippery slope” arguments leveled, is that it would not result in the goals that you desire.

Lets take a look first at a Mr. Edward Gallagher. Now, personally, I consider him to be a gutless coward, along with being a piece of shit. Only a gutless coward shoots at unarmed civilians and murders disarmed and injured prisoners of war. However, he meets your criteria as someone who would not be shamed as a gutless coward for advocating for war. I don't know him, so it is only speculation, but I would guess that he would advocate for wars, and he'd sign up to go fight them. However, I would consider his opinion to be worth even less than the most chicken of the hawks you could find in civilian life.

He is not isolated in this. I met a number of vets while I was in school, there on the GI bill. Most were pretty cool people, but they were mostly support logistics. A few seemed to have seen combat, but didn't much like to talk about it. The most assholish of them were the ones that looked back on their time in combat with fondness and nostalgia, telling stories of mowing down people while high on cocaine. They would also not be shamable as gutless cowards under your conditions, but I would still find their opinion to be only worthwhile as to get a measure of what to move away from.

It's not about courage and bravery. If you are in the US military, then going to war is not really that high a risk to your life. The vast majority of people who went off to war came back physically undamaged. Psychologically, OTOH, is a different matter. I am of the strong opinion, that being in combat, where you are trying to kill people who are trying to kill you, will only not cuase great psychological harm if you are already broken.

Now, to a large extent, I do hold the opinion that those who have or are serving to have a bit more informed of an opinion than those who have not served, and those higher than those who will *not* serve, but the differences I put on those weights are small, a few percent at most.

There are some wars and military actions that I am in favor of. If SEAL Team 6 had come to my door and asked if I wanted to go on the Bin Laden raid, I would have gone along and only been concerned that I would get in the way, but I wouldn't have signed up for the military just because I approved of that raid.

You have described wars of “choice”, but you are slightly misnomering them. They are wars for profit. We are sending in troops to not protect ourselves or allies from belligerent neighbors, but to protect commerce and trade, protecting oil pipelines and tankers. I am not entirely against this, but having a few ships patrolling and discouraging pirates is a bit shy of invading a sovereign country because they are accused of popping some holes in some oil pipelines.

Now, this goes beyond social shaming, and would be more of a policy matter, but I would be for the idea that if we are at war, defined by having troops or materiel on or engaged with hostile forces on non-allied land, then we should go to a war tax. Call it the tax rates we had during or immediately after WWII, adjusted for inflation.

So, I would say that, before advocating for war, are you willing to pay for that war? You can sign up to fight, sure, that's one way of paying for it, but if you are sitting home on your couch, watching Fox News's coverage of bombs dropping on people half a world away, then you should have some level of sacrifice as well, and fiscal is as good as any.

I am not sure what social shaming term I would use to describe someone who is willing to ask their country to pay for the enormous costs associated with going to war, but is not willing to pay them selves is, but we can just go with general insults to their character and upbringing until we think of a specific term. Cheaphawk, misermonger, piece of shit?

As to that, while it Is certainly fun to insult those who lead our country to ruin, I do have to address my concerns on the efficacy of aht. As mentioned, when people feel insulted, they dig in. Not saying that I would have quit smoking earlier had I not been “shamed” about it, but I certainly wasn't going to quit smoking for the purpose of giving someone who had insulted me the satisfaction of knowing that insulting me had worked.

We can call 'em as we see 'em. We can give them whatever insultignames we want to, and we can get some enjoyment or catharsis out of doing so. It is even possible that others will also make sure that these insults make it back to the ears of those deserving of them. And they may even play some small role in changing a few minds here and there about their position towards unnecessary wars waged for profit.

If you feel that personally remarking to those who advocate for war without being willing to pay for it, whether in their own service or at elast in a greater fiscal contribution that they lack in character and in courage, then you are not wrong to do so, however, your idea of a campaign of shaming is, while well intentioned and not without some merit in thinking on what the goals of such a campaign would be and more effective way of achieving those goals, is IMHO, not practical or effective.
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Old 05-25-2019, 01:48 PM
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If you feel that personally remarking to those who advocate for war without being willing to pay for it, whether in their own service or at elast in a greater fiscal contribution that they lack in character and in courage, then you are not wrong to do so, however, your idea of a campaign of shaming is, while well intentioned and not without some merit in thinking on what the goals of such a campaign would be and more effective way of achieving those goals, is IMHO, not practical or effective.
... and it seems like we've found another non-service-person defending their right to send other people to war.

Seriously, the ratio on this thread is 0% of people willing to back up their words with actions. It's like bugs to a bug zapper. What's going on here?
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Old 05-25-2019, 02:13 PM
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... and it seems like we've found another non-service-person defending their right to send other people to war.

Seriously, the ratio on this thread is 0% of people willing to back up their words with actions. It's like bugs to a bug zapper. What's going on here?
If that's what you got out of my fairly long and thought out post, then I don't know what to tell you. That is the complete opposite of what I actually did say.
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Old 05-25-2019, 02:35 PM
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First of all, might I mention that I may have some pretty serious non-serious insults to level at you, mr double i andy double double i, in the pit when I get a chance for “baiting” me into breaking my hiatus.

I started reading this thread without having a strong opinion. I thought you made some good arguments, but so did some of your opponents in the thread. I will say that if I thought that your idea would be in any way effective, then I could easily go along with it, but I see, more than the moral or ethical or “slippery slope” arguments leveled, is that it would not result in the goals that you desire.

Lets take a look first at a Mr. Edward Gallagher. Now, personally, I consider him to be a gutless coward, along with being a piece of shit. Only a gutless coward shoots at unarmed civilians and murders disarmed and injured prisoners of war. However, he meets your criteria as someone who would not be shamed as a gutless coward for advocating for war. I don't know him, so it is only speculation, but I would guess that he would advocate for wars, and he'd sign up to go fight them. However, I would consider his opinion to be worth even less than the most chicken of the hawks you could find in civilian life.

He is not isolated in this. I met a number of vets while I was in school, there on the GI bill. Most were pretty cool people, but they were mostly support logistics. A few seemed to have seen combat, but didn't much like to talk about it. The most assholish of them were the ones that looked back on their time in combat with fondness and nostalgia, telling stories of mowing down people while high on cocaine. They would also not be shamable as gutless cowards under your conditions, but I would still find their opinion to be only worthwhile as to get a measure of what to move away from.

It's not about courage and bravery. If you are in the US military, then going to war is not really that high a risk to your life. The vast majority of people who went off to war came back physically undamaged. Psychologically, OTOH, is a different matter. I am of the strong opinion, that being in combat, where you are trying to kill people who are trying to kill you, will only not cuase great psychological harm if you are already broken.

Now, to a large extent, I do hold the opinion that those who have or are serving to have a bit more informed of an opinion than those who have not served, and those higher than those who will *not* serve, but the differences I put on those weights are small, a few percent at most.

There are some wars and military actions that I am in favor of. If SEAL Team 6 had come to my door and asked if I wanted to go on the Bin Laden raid, I would have gone along and only been concerned that I would get in the way, but I wouldn't have signed up for the military just because I approved of that raid.

You have described wars of “choice”, but you are slightly misnomering them. They are wars for profit. We are sending in troops to not protect ourselves or allies from belligerent neighbors, but to protect commerce and trade, protecting oil pipelines and tankers. I am not entirely against this, but having a few ships patrolling and discouraging pirates is a bit shy of invading a sovereign country because they are accused of popping some holes in some oil pipelines.

Now, this goes beyond social shaming, and would be more of a policy matter, but I would be for the idea that if we are at war, defined by having troops or materiel on or engaged with hostile forces on non-allied land, then we should go to a war tax. Call it the tax rates we had during or immediately after WWII, adjusted for inflation.

So, I would say that, before advocating for war, are you willing to pay for that war? You can sign up to fight, sure, that's one way of paying for it, but if you are sitting home on your couch, watching Fox News's coverage of bombs dropping on people half a world away, then you should have some level of sacrifice as well, and fiscal is as good as any.

I am not sure what social shaming term I would use to describe someone who is willing to ask their country to pay for the enormous costs associated with going to war, but is not willing to pay them selves is, but we can just go with general insults to their character and upbringing until we think of a specific term. Cheaphawk, misermonger, piece of shit?

As to that, while it Is certainly fun to insult those who lead our country to ruin, I do have to address my concerns on the efficacy of aht. As mentioned, when people feel insulted, they dig in. Not saying that I would have quit smoking earlier had I not been “shamed” about it, but I certainly wasn't going to quit smoking for the purpose of giving someone who had insulted me the satisfaction of knowing that insulting me had worked.

We can call 'em as we see 'em. We can give them whatever insultignames we want to, and we can get some enjoyment or catharsis out of doing so. It is even possible that others will also make sure that these insults make it back to the ears of those deserving of them. And they may even play some small role in changing a few minds here and there about their position towards unnecessary wars waged for profit.

If you feel that personally remarking to those who advocate for war without being willing to pay for it, whether in their own service or at elast in a greater fiscal contribution that they lack in character and in courage, then you are not wrong to do so, however, your idea of a campaign of shaming is, while well intentioned and not without some merit in thinking on what the goals of such a campaign would be and more effective way of achieving those goals, is IMHO, not practical or effective.
This is not really about the power of insults, or insults changing minds... it's about an attempt to change (even if in a small way) a society and a culture that I believe sees war as a little thing -- no big deal, and no big problem. It sees war as fundamentally easy. War should be seen as incredibly hard -- for society as a whole, not just those who take part in it. It should not be an easy or flippant decision, and I think too many Americans see it that way.
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Old 05-25-2019, 02:46 PM
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This is not really about the power of insults, or insults changing minds... it's about an attempt to change (even if in a small way) a society and a culture that I believe sees war as a little thing -- no big deal, and no big problem. It sees war as fundamentally easy. War should be seen as incredibly hard -- for society as a whole, not just those who take part in it. It should not be an easy or flippant decision, and I think too many Americans see it that way.
I agree that our culture is to easy to go to war. The average american probably couldn't list half the countries that we are currently engaged in hostilities. I see that to be the problem more than warmongers is the apathy.

Would you put any insult or shame to someone who doesn't support a war, but also isn't against a war, because they haven't bothered to inform themselves about the war? If your goal is to prevent unnecessary wars, those are the ones that need to be reached, more than the ones who advocate for wars. If you would shame them, how would you do so, and do you think that it would be effective?

That's why I like my idea of a war tax. Then your average american, no how apathetic about it, is still being impacted, and may find themselves with an encouragement to learn about the wars that they are paying these taxes to support.

Last edited by k9bfriender; 05-25-2019 at 02:46 PM. Reason: question marks for questions
  #277  
Old 05-25-2019, 02:48 PM
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I agree that our culture is to easy to go to war. The average american probably couldn't list half the countries that we are currently engaged in hostilities. I see that to be the problem more than warmongers is the apathy.

Would you put any insult or shame to someone who doesn't support a war, but also isn't against a war, because they haven't bothered to inform themselves about the war? If your goal is to prevent unnecessary wars, those are the ones that need to be reached, more than the ones who advocate for wars. If you would shame them, how would you do so, and do you think that it would be effective?

That's why I like my idea of a war tax. Then your average american, no how apathetic about it, is still being impacted, and may find themselves with an encouragement to learn about the wars that they are paying these taxes to support.
I'm not sure, but I'd certainly welcome suggestions on other ways to address this problem.
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Old 05-25-2019, 03:38 PM
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I agree that our culture is to easy to go to war. The average american probably couldn't list half the countries that we are currently engaged in hostilities. I see that to be the problem more than warmongers is the apathy.

Would you put any insult or shame to someone who doesn't support a war, but also isn't against a war, because they haven't bothered to inform themselves about the war? If your goal is to prevent unnecessary wars, those are the ones that need to be reached, more than the ones who advocate for wars. If you would shame them, how would you do so, and do you think that it would be effective?

That's why I like my idea of a war tax. Then your average american, no how apathetic about it, is still being impacted, and may find themselves with an encouragement to learn about the wars that they are paying these taxes to support.
Yano, that's not a half crazy suggestion. People may be all gung-ho about sending the military to go 'kick some ass! Fuck yah!' half a world away (like it's a football game), long as it doesn't require any personal sacrifice. However, I think a mandatory tax that would require all civilians to pay for the war they might callously support would end up causing people to be less eager to advocate for it.

Also, I'm a fan of the idea that every able man and woman should be required to serve 2-4 years in some form, be it military, or a required civil/c service gig like national infrastructure projects, habitat for humanity, and various other community projects. I can only see that as being a real positive to society and economy.
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  #279  
Old 05-25-2019, 03:42 PM
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Yano, that's not a half crazy suggestion. People may be all gung-ho about sending the military to go 'kick some ass! Fuck yah!' half a world away (like it's a football game), long as it doesn't require any personal sacrifice. However, I think a mandatory tax that would require all civilians to pay for the war they might callously support would end up causing people to be less eager to advocate for it.

Also, I'm a fan of the idea that every able man and woman should be required to serve 2-4 years in some form, be it military, or a required civil/c service gig like national infrastructure projects, habitat for humanity, and various other community projects. I can only see that as being a real positive to society and economy.
I'd gladly endorse the second of these ideas; I'm not convinced about the first but I'd consider it.
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Old 05-25-2019, 03:52 PM
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I'd gladly endorse the second of these ideas; I'm not convinced about the first but I'd consider it.
The first does not preclude being called out as a coward. It just puts an additional financial price on it.
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  #281  
Old 05-25-2019, 04:46 PM
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I don't believe that social shaming - even the worst types of social shaming (assuming there's no legal consequences) - can affect liberty. I believe liberty is about what folks are prevented from doing be force of law, not what they are dissuaded from doing by force if societal disapproval. Social shaming can still be a very bad thing in many circumstances, and harm things like fairness and neighborliness and similar concepts on society.

I'm not sure what you mean by #2 above.

As far as your last paragraph - my position may be dissuading certain arguments, but it's not denying anything, any more than we're denied open debate about sex with children.

My position really is quite simple to understand if you accept (or imagine accepting) my supposition that, in almost all cases, warmongering is as bad as child sex advocacy.
In my opinion, liberty is the freedom to do something so long as you do not deny other people's freedom to do something. Would you agree, or care to offer a better definition?

~Max
  #282  
Old 05-25-2019, 04:51 PM
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In my opinion, liberty is the freedom to do something so long as you do not deny other people's freedom to do something. Would you agree, or care to offer a better definition?

~Max
Sounds like a good definition to me. I don't believe what I propose denies anyone else's freedom.
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Old 05-25-2019, 05:10 PM
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Sounds like a good definition to me. I don't believe what I propose denies anyone else's freedom.
Good, now we have to define what is just. Would you say that a valid criticism is justified, while an invalid criticism is unjustified?

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Old 05-25-2019, 05:11 PM
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Good, now we have to define what is just. Would you say that a valid criticism is justified, while an invalid criticism is unjustified?

~Max
In general, sure.
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Old 05-25-2019, 05:32 PM
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In general, sure.
Now then, you will not deny that I have the freedom to express my opinion without fear of retaliation, no matter the source. This is the right to freedom of speech.

Liberty does not guarantee freedom of speech in all cases. For example, yelling "fire" in a crowded theater when there is no fire would lead to physical harm, and would unjustly infringe on people's freedom of physical safety. Do you agree?

~Max

Last edited by Max S.; 05-25-2019 at 05:32 PM. Reason: Do you agree?
  #286  
Old 05-25-2019, 05:41 PM
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Now then, you will not deny that I have the freedom to express my opinion without fear of retaliation, no matter the source. This is the right to freedom of speech.

Liberty does not guarantee freedom of speech in all cases. For example, yelling "fire" in a crowded theater when there is no fire would lead to physical harm, and would unjustly infringe on people's freedom of physical safety. Do you agree?

~Max
What does "fear of retaliation" mean? If you mean legal restriction, than yes (barring very rare cases like threats of violence and yelling "fire" and the like). But people are free to respond ("retaliate") with speech of their own, including very negative speech.
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Old 05-25-2019, 05:48 PM
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Now then, you will not deny that I have the freedom to express my opinion without fear of retaliation, no matter the source. This is the right to freedom of speech.

Liberty does not guarantee freedom of speech in all cases. For example, yelling "fire" in a crowded theater when there is no fire would lead to physical harm, and would unjustly infringe on people's freedom of physical safety. Do you agree?

~Max
Sounds like you want speech free from consequence of that speech, which is an entirely different thing than freedom of speech.

I know how it is, I've seen many conservatives make the same mistake when they, with absolutely no sense of self awareness, claim that we shouldn't have the right to criticize racists.
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Old 05-25-2019, 06:32 PM
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Sounds like you want speech free from consequence of that speech, which is an entirely different thing than freedom of speech.

I know how it is, I've seen many conservatives make the same mistake when they, with absolutely no sense of self awareness, claim that we shouldn't have the right to criticize racists.
No, actually I want to say public debates would ideally have speech free from invalid (ad-hominem) retaliation, but for some reason I can't think straight and show how this follows from the general principle of liberty.

~Max
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Old 05-25-2019, 06:35 PM
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No, actually I want to say public debates would ideally have speech free from invalid (ad-hominem) retaliation, but for some reason I can't think straight and show how this follows from the general principle of liberty.

~Max
If people aren't free to make "invalid" or ad-hominem criticisms, then those folks don't really seem to have liberty to me.
  #290  
Old 05-25-2019, 06:40 PM
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What does "fear of retaliation" mean? If you mean legal restriction, than yes (barring very rare cases like threats of violence and yelling "fire" and the like). But people are free to respond ("retaliate") with speech of their own, including very negative speech.
Let me try again. Ideally I would have the freedom to speak without fear of retaliation from anyone. That is what I consider the freedom of unfettered speech, not to be confused with the constitutional principle. We don't have that freedom, but ideally I would have it and you wouldn't, just like every other freedom.

That's why we go for liberty instead. I have the liberty to speak, but I don't have the liberty of unfettered speech because that would mean you do not have the freedom to speak back at me. I have the freedom to yell "fire" in a crowded theater, but I do not have the liberty to do so unless there is actually a fire, and I can be imprisoned for that speech. Do you agree with this?

~Max
  #291  
Old 05-25-2019, 06:43 PM
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Let me try again. Ideally I would have the freedom to speak without fear of retaliation from anyone. That is what I consider the freedom of unfettered speech, not to be confused with the constitutional principle. We don't have that freedom, but ideally I would have it and you wouldn't, just like every other freedom.

That's why we go for liberty instead. I have the liberty to speak, but I don't have the liberty of unfettered speech because that would mean you do not have the freedom to speak back at me. I have the freedom to yell "fire" in a crowded theater, but I do not have the liberty to do so unless there is actually a fire, and I can be imprisoned for that speech. Do you agree with this?

~Max
I don't think I follow this. Maybe you should just get to the final point you're trying to make. "Free speech" in my understanding means freedom to say what you want (barring a very few things already discussed) without legal consequence. It doesn't mean freedom from consequences, such as losing one's friends or even one's job (though anti-discrimination laws can protect certain types of speech, most prominently religious speech, from employer retaliation).
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Old 05-25-2019, 07:05 PM
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I don't think I follow this. Maybe you should just get to the final point you're trying to make. "Free speech" in my understanding means freedom to say what you want (barring a very few things already discussed) without legal consequence. It doesn't mean freedom from consequences, such as losing one's friends or even one's job (though anti-discrimination laws can protect certain types of speech, most prominently religious speech, from employer retaliation).
Well the point is that you should not be using ad-hominem attacks in the theater of public debate unless there is consensus that you are justified in doing so. And in this case, your calling someone a coward is only possibly justified if the debate were already resolved in your favor - if the war or military action is unnecessary. Therefore, you are jumping the gun and your proposal is assuming the conclusion, therefore invalid and undeserving of support.

~Max
  #293  
Old 05-25-2019, 07:08 PM
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Well the point is that you should not be using ad-hominem attacks in the theater of public debate unless there is consensus that you are justified in doing so.
I don't see why this should be the case.
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Old 05-25-2019, 07:19 PM
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I don't see why this should be the case.
I was about to write something long, but it turns out my argument still stands without that sentence.

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And in this case, your calling someone a coward is only possibly justified if the debate were already resolved in your favor - if the war or military action is unnecessary. Therefore, you are jumping the gun and your proposal is assuming the conclusion, therefore invalid and undeserving of support.
~Max
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Old 05-25-2019, 07:21 PM
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And in this case, your calling someone a coward is only possibly justified if the debate were already resolved in your favor - if the war or military action is unnecessary.
I don't see why this should be the case either (depending on what you mean by "resolved"). It should already be "resolved" that starting a war with Iran would be unnecessary (much worse than unnecessary, in fact).

Last edited by iiandyiiii; 05-25-2019 at 07:21 PM.
  #296  
Old 05-25-2019, 07:31 PM
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I don't see why this should be the case either (depending on what you mean by "resolved"). It should already be "resolved" that starting a war with Iran would be unnecessary (much worse than unnecessary, in fact).
But sir, the entire public debate is whether the war with Iran is necessary or not. The fact that debate isn't shut down, as it would be for the subject of child molestation or genocide, is evidence enough that the issue is far from resolved.

~Max
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Old 05-25-2019, 07:50 PM
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But sir, the entire public debate is whether the war with Iran is necessary or not. The fact that debate isn't shut down, as it would be for the subject of child molestation or genocide, is evidence enough that the issue is far from resolved.

~Max
That debate is over, for decent and intelligent and informed Americans.
  #298  
Old 05-26-2019, 12:34 AM
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That debate is over, for decent and intelligent and informed Americans.
iiandyiiii, am I to understand that you will jump into a debate with the attitude that you are right, and people who disagree with you are indecent, unintelligent, or uninformed? Do you even consider the possibility that you are wrong?

~Max
  #299  
Old 05-26-2019, 05:56 AM
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iiandyiiii, am I to understand that you will jump into a debate with the attitude that you are right, and people who disagree with you are indecent, unintelligent, or uninformed?
Not for the vast majority of issues. But there are a tiny number in which the other side are indeed "indecent, unintelligent, or uninformed" IMO. Presumably, you'd agree with me for certain issues - advocacy for white supremacy, for colonialism, for torture, and a few others.
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Old 05-26-2019, 08:38 AM
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I understand your theory, but it has issues........

*As you stated, not everyone who backs military decisions or those who join the military are able to be "on the front lines" as it were.
*If everyone was on the front lines of the military, there wouldn't be anyone to cook for them, medically care for them, manage them, or do all the office work that military needs in order to be organized.
*Not all people are suited for "front line" activities, mentally or physically, even though they back the military and those who join. That doesn't make them cowards.


And the biggest issues with your theory.........

*Not all people who apply for the military are accepted. That doesn't make them cowards.
*Not ALL military positions are actual military enlisted jobs, they are civil service jobs. These people back those who actually DO get enlisted. That doesn't make them cowards.




My personal opinion is, that the military is a voluntary organization, and those who have the gumption to attempt to enlist are worthy of the backing of those who cannot or don't. That doesn't make them cowards.

What about organizations like the USO? They help active troops by providing a "bit of home" as well as entertainment to on-duty personnel out in the fields. They aren't enlisted military personnel, but they are out there doing what they can to help these enlisted people.
Are they cowards?


Your theory has it's credits, it also has a lot of "holes" in it.
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