Reflections on Memorial Day

I spent Memorial Day with my mother, brother and son. We visited my grandparents’ graves and said many prayers for our ancestors, as well as the soldiers and veterans who fought in years past, and those who continue to fight for our country to allow us the freedom we have today.

My grandfather, Adolph Landowski was a man of faith and integrity. As the son of Polish immigrants he worked hard for everything he had. He served in World War II as a ship navigator and made it his duty to fight for the end of the evil Hitler dictatorship.

My grandfather was so angry that a man like Hitler was able to carry out the millions of horrible deaths in concentration camps like Auschwitz and Buchenwald.

In the military my grandfather was known as Adler because he couldn't bear to have the same first name as the world's closest resemblence to Satan.

While my grandfather died the year before I was born, I've listened intently as my grandmother, my mother and my uncles repeated the stories of his life and his courage and bravery during World War II.

When he returned from the service, he married my grandmother and they had seven children. Grandpa Adolph had a strong work ethic and struggled to support his family as a farmer.

He taught his children the importance of God, Family and Country and he never let his kids take anything for granted.

He believed that any country worth living in was also worth fighting for. He never questioned his duty to serve his country. He never dodged a draft, and instead went willingly overseas to fight for the freedom of his fellow Americans and to fight for the lives of millions of Poles, Jews and other victims of the Hitler regime.

When I think about the Iraq War, I experience feelings of pride and appreciation for our military and our country.

The service men and women stationed in Iraq, Afghanistan and Kuwait, as well as Germany, Japan and so many countries in this world, sacrifice their lives for others. They sacrifice their lives for us. They have families who pray for their safe return. I pray for these soldiers, their families and for the end of this long and difficult war.

Soldiers of past wars fought for freedom. Soldiers of Iraq fight for freedom. Soldiers of the future will fight for freedom.

My mother barely understands the technology of e-mail, but she saw something on the internet that she felt was very important and enlisted the help of my tech savvy brother to send the message my way.

The e-mail read as follows:

Cindy Sheehan asked President Bush, "Why did my son have to die in Iraq?"

Another mother asked President Kennedy, "Why did my son have to die in Viet Nam?"

Another mother asked President Truman, "Why did my son have to die in Korea?

Another mother asked President Franklin Roosevelt, "Why did my son have to die at Iwo Jima?"

Another mother asked President Woodrow Wilson, "Why did my son have to die on the battlefield of France?"

Yet another mother asked President Lincoln, "Why did my son have to die at Gettysburg?"

And yet another mother asked President George Washington, "Why did my son have to die near Valley Forge?"

Then long, long ago, a mother asked, "Heavenly Father, why did my Son have to die on a cross outside of Jerusalem?"

The answers to all these are similar. "That others may have life and dwell in peace, happiness and freedom."

While I haven't been able to find the name of the author who wrote this, I feel as though the message warrants a moment of silence, praise and rememberence for all the service men and women who fought for freedom in the past, and those who continue to fight for freedom today.

Posted by Dana J. Tuszke at May 29, 2007 4:28 PM
Comments
Comment #221573

I don’t believe you’ll get any posts on here from any of the columns that disagree with what you have said.

http://www.peacetakescourage.com/index2.php?subaction=showcomments&id=1180284190&archive=&start_from=&ucat=&page=blog

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at May 29, 2007 5:17 PM
Comment #221575

Dana
Great Post.

Posted by: KAP at May 29, 2007 5:19 PM
Comment #221587

So, all wars of History was about freedom, and that’s it?! Yeah, right. Like all vets will agree with that, no doubt.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at May 29, 2007 7:00 PM
Comment #221591

Philippe
This VET DOES.

Posted by: KAP at May 29, 2007 7:30 PM
Comment #221596

Phillipe,

So does this one! And of all people posting here, you should have even more reason to thank a vet.

Posted by: John Back at May 29, 2007 7:53 PM
Comment #221600

philippe Houdoin

How many frenchmen does it take to defend Paris?

Nobody knows. It has never been tried.

Posted by: tomh at May 29, 2007 8:22 PM
Comment #221601

How beguiling to become slaves of continuous warfare in the name of other’s freedom. One of life’s great and magnificent ironies, so vast, most cannot wrap their minds around the galactic contradiction. Only a mind like that of Christ or Mahatma Gandhi can see the futility of hostile war as a path to freedom. Freedom comes not without struggle and defense, but, war only leads to death, dismemberment, and enslavement to destruction and grief and loss.

A nation whose economy is built upon war cannot succeed in being a nation of peace and prosperity and enlightenment. The profits of war will not permit that. Those needing a job in the war industry or servicing it, will not permit that. Those needing a legacy of heroism in battle, resolution in the face of the enemy, and absolute resolve to destroy those who will not yield to their will, will not permit that.

We can question our leaders, or follow them. It is not our leaders who call for war who die in war, as was once the case. If our leaders calling for war were on the front lines with those dying in it, there would be less reason to question them.

But, in these times, questioning leaders who would send others to fight their war, demands the most rigorous of questioning, and answers that satisfy the giving up of one’s family to the call.

Defending and protecting family was once the primary reason for war. We are so much more civilized now; we volunteer them without question or answer now, until after they are dead or maimed. Then rationalizing the loss is the only solace and comfort.

Posted by: David R. Remer at May 29, 2007 8:34 PM
Comment #221617

Dana, I am afraid I do not see that there is a sound conclusion here.

If you strip away all the distractions, you are basically claiming that people are dying in Iraq: “that others may have life and dwell in peace, happiness and freedom,” and without substantiating it with anything.

The persuasive element is epitomized right here:

the message warrants a moment of silence, praise and rememberence [sic] for all the service men and women who fought for freedom in the past, and those who continue to fight for freedom today.

It is an attempt at convincing readers that the Iraq war is valorous by associating it with previous and more respectable conflicts.

Posted by: Zeek at May 29, 2007 10:18 PM
Comment #221628

Zeek….speaking only for myself, I regard this particular tribute to be about ONLY the warrior, and not the war.
To pay respect and to thank them for their service, doesn’t condone the theater they are involved in.
Any loss on their part should not be trivialized because I don’t support the conflict.

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at May 29, 2007 11:42 PM
Comment #221632

All,

I’m not saying soldiers doesn’t deserve respect. But believe they always were asked to fight for freedom is being naive.

John,

Being french, should I thanks forever every US vet of whatever war on earth for being an US soldier veteran like the ones who freed my country when I was not even born, or what?

I’ve visited in the 90s a US military graveyard near D-Day landing beaches at Caen. I’ve hesitate a lot before approaching the few vets that were there to thanks them. Their respective families thanked me back, calling an anonymous french thanks the best gift their husband/dad/grandpa could receive here.

I’m glad I did it, it makes sense in such situation to me and, hopefully, for them.
But, sorry, this doesn’t make all wars about freedom only, and not all soldiers freedom soldiers. In particular when their are not defenders but aggressors, like in Iraq.

tomd,

How many frenchmen does it take to defend Paris? Nobody knows. It has never been tried.

One million, four hundred thousand French soldiers were killed during World War I, successfully stopping during 4 years Germans in their path to Paris. As a result, there weren’t many Frenchmen left to fight in World War II, 20 years later. Nevertheless, 100,000 French soldiers lost their lives trying to stop Hitler, 5 years before D-Day.

On behalf of every one of those 1,500,000 men, I would like to thank you, Tomh, for this clever joke. Nicest way to show me how to pay respect to soldiers memories.

Zeek,

I agree, my first post was in reaction to attempt to put freedom on every soldiers death, whatever the war, which could make some wars motivations more respectable that they’re in reality.
History is full enough of soldiers dying for their leader addiction to power, conquest, ego, greed, rage, hate, fear or even sex.

Don’t mismatch paying respect to soldiers with paying respect to war.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at May 30, 2007 2:55 AM
Comment #221644
One million, four hundred thousand French soldiers were killed during World War I, successfully stopping during 4 years Germans in their path to Paris. As a result, there weren’t many Frenchmen left to fight in World War II, 20 years later. Nevertheless, 100,000 French soldiers lost their lives trying to stop Hitler, 5 years before D-Day.

On behalf of every one of those 1,500,000 men, I would like to thank you, Tomh, for this clever joke. Nicest way to show me how to pay respect to soldiers memories.

Thanks, Phillipe, for showing how pointless the French-bashing is. I’m not French at all, but I’m really sick of the reflexive Francophobia from the right.

Yes, the French military was overwhelmed by the German military in the beginning of WWII, and allies from America and other countries had to fight to help the French regain their freedom. But why do we pick on only the French? The same is true of the Dutch, the Belgians, the Luxembourgeoisie, the Danish, the Norwegians, the Polish, the Lithuanians, the Latvians, the Estonians, the Czechs, the Greeks, the Yugoslavs, most of Russia (by population center), and others.

The military of the Third Reich was an awesome force used effectively, overwhelming nearly the entire continent of Europe, requiring the combined forces of many nations’ militaries to overcome it. Why does the unthinking right focus its hatred on one particular victim of that aggression? Why is the land that previously hosted one of the most powerful militaries in the world and was the home of one of the world’s most feared empires treated as such a weakling? Because they happened to be correct in advance that invading and occupying Iraq was going to be a mistake?

John Back and tomh, you should really be ashamed for following O’Reilly’s boneheaded lead in slandering a proud ally with an impressive military tradition.

Posted by: LawnBoy at May 30, 2007 8:53 AM
Comment #221645

Dana,

We are no longer in the 9/11 aftermath that made people feel if you question this pathetic government you were unpatriotic. Your post would have worked then. The men and women who are fighting in Iraq are doing so because of an ideology that was hatched by idiots in the 90’s and bungled by idiots now. Call it glorious all you want. We are decimating our military, we are destroying our credibility and we are killing these people because of the mismanagement of the most incopetent government in our history.

Posted by: Andre M. Hernandez at May 30, 2007 8:56 AM
Comment #221646

To all,

incompetent. My bad.

Posted by: Andre M. Hernandez at May 30, 2007 9:45 AM
Comment #221647

Lawnboy

I’m not.

Andre M. Hernandez

You missed the message from Dana. She was not talking about anybodys attitude toward a government or particular war. She was down to the basic element, the soldier and the respect that should be shown toward each and every one of them who died for you to make your statement.

Posted by: tomh at May 30, 2007 9:49 AM
Comment #221652
She was not talking about anybodys attitude toward a government or particular war. She was down to the basic element, the soldier and the respect that should be shown toward each and every one of them who died for you to make your statement.

I’ve emphased the part in your statement that is not about respecting soldiers memories but about war goals and outputs. Which are debatable, as not all of them deserve an equal tribute.
In particular in regard to Iraq War.

Basis is the soldier and the respect that should be shown toward each and every one of them who died doing their duties.
Notice it works fine too for firefighters, which is a sign such tribute statement have less political strings attached…

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at May 30, 2007 10:12 AM
Comment #221653

One million, four hundred thousand French soldiers were killed during World War I, successfully stopping during 4 years Germans in their path to Paris. … 100,000 French soldiers lost their lives trying to stop Hitler, 5 years before D-Day.

Phillipe,

Well said. I am not naming names here, but it is frustrating that some people will ridicule another country’s military (and one that has been an ally for over 200 years, no less), yet will vehemently rant and call his country’s own citizens unpatriotic just because someone objects to the current foreign policy.

Posted by: bobo at May 30, 2007 10:20 AM
Comment #221656

Sandra & Philipe,

I am not confusing supporting troops for supporting war. I was just pointing out that Dana’s e-mail supports the Iraq war via association.

Also, something I failed to catch until you two brought it up, it also tries to associate the war with the soldiers. Arousing patriotism for our service-members is a tried-and-tested method for garnering support for the war and it is being used in Dana’s post.

Again, I think this is a mistake. Not to take anything away from Memorial Day, I just hate to see it used like this.

Posted by: Zeek at May 30, 2007 10:55 AM
Comment #221657

Tomh,

The men and women who have lost their lives in Iraq did not die for my freedom. They did not die for your freedom. Dana is attempting to glorify their tragic deaths and equate them with WWII etc. These men and women have died for Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, The Military Industrial Complex, Haliburton KBR and all other profiteers of this war based on lies.
I respect their sacrifices. I respect their bravery but do not attempt to glorify their mission.

Posted by: Andre M. Hernandez at May 30, 2007 10:59 AM
Comment #221659

Andre,

Agreed. The reasons for going to war or continuing a war need to be critically evaluated.

No one in the United States I have ever met has ever argued that the sacrifices of WWII (over 250,000 soldiers were killed) was not for a good cause. But that cause was not the same cause as Vietnam or Iraq. And there are people out there (again, I am not naming names) who will obfuscate sacrifice by comparing it with the cause. That is not the purpose of Memorial Day.

Posted by: bobo at May 30, 2007 11:16 AM
Comment #221662
I’m not.

tomh,

I’m not surprised that you refuse to show shame at senselessly denigrating one of our closest allies, at intentionally ignoring the facts and lessons of history, and at disrespecting the sacrifices of over one million French soldiers who gave their lives at our sides last century, and the other thousands who fought for our revolution.

I’m not surprised at all; I’m just disappointed.

Posted by: LawnBoy at May 30, 2007 11:35 AM
Comment #221665

LawnBoy, don’t be that hard on tomh.

After all, french fought brits and died at York Town to help americans to get their freedom. I won’t blame Tomh for enjoying freedom.

In particular because the french were not ther only for freeing americans from brits. They were there also to annoy the brits as much as possible. As usual. ;-)

Memorial days are to remember. Correctly, if possible, is better. Soldiers dying during their duties deserve our respect. Wars deserve no specific respect, except that we learn something from them.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at May 30, 2007 12:03 PM
Comment #221691

Andre,

“The men and women who have lost their lives in Iraq did not die for my freedom. They did not die for your freedom. Dana is attempting to glorify their tragic deaths and equate them with WWII etc. These men and women have died for Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, The Military Industrial Complex, Haliburton KBR and all other profiteers of this war based on lies. I respect their sacrifices. I respect their bravery but do not attempt to glorify their mission.”


Yes they did die for your freedom. They enlisted for your freedom; they re-enlisted for your freedom; and they (certainly) died for your freedom. That is what the military is all about; they’ve done it for centuries. And, that is what many of you, that don’t support their mission, will never (ever) understand. Ever! They don’t serve and fight in wars YOU think is right or wrong; they do it for their country’s call. And, this country called upon them to fight in Iraq. Not to mention the (majority) congress that voted for the authorization to go to war; now the same ones are recanting that vote and voted no to fund the same troops they voted to send to war. Despicable!!!

Posted by: rahdigly at May 30, 2007 4:33 PM
Comment #221698

We are well beyond Memorial day.
Now I must say this however UNGENTLY:

NO-ONE in IRAQ ever threatened my freedom.
Neither did anyone in Viet Nam.

IF there ever was a MORAL war…
it was WWII.
…and even then, the means and method of first our non-involvement, and then our involvement, was flawed in many ways.

Those dying in Iraq now, God help them, are dying in war that was begun illegally by an administration that has the greatest disregard for our country and our people than any administration in our history…and for WHAT?
OIL?
It isn’t about 9/11. Sadaam never had any connection to that.
We are losing American lives again, and for what?
Is this winnable? I cannot see how, given the fact that all we are doing is furthering the very image that Al Qeada and other terrorist organizations paint of us. ANybody that has read Uncle Remus will understand this:
WE ARE IN A TAR BABY SITUATION.
…and the briar patch doesn’t look so good either!

Posted by: RGF at May 30, 2007 5:16 PM
Comment #221701

Dana
Your grandfather was a good man. It’s refreshing to see the respect you have for him and what he did not only in service to his country, but in service to his family.
Please except my thanks in his place for his service to our great Nation.
I received the same e-mail that your grandmother did a few weeks ago. I wish I could tell you who the author is but I don’t think it was given. But it’s still a good piece.


Philippe
YES! ALL wars are for freedom. In some way or another. Someone was fighting for their freedom in everyone of them. Either to keep from losing it. Or to gain it.


bobo
The purpose of Memorial Day is to remember ALL those they made the ultimate sacrifice in service to this country in EVERY war this country has fought. Not just he ones you agree with.
Every soldier that has died in any war this country ha fought or is fighting has died serving their country weather they agreed with the reasoning for it or not. They put their life on the line in service to their country and made the ultimate sacrifice for it.
For that they deserve our greatest respect and honor.

Posted by: Ron Brown at May 30, 2007 5:32 PM
Comment #221708

RGF
Are you a citizen of the United States? Or at least a legal resident of the Untied States?
If the answer to either one of these questions is yes, then EVERYONE that has EVER died in ANY war that the United States has ever fought in HAS died for you.
They died serving their country and as either a citizen or legal resident you are this Country. That means that they died serving you, so they died for you.
It doesn’t matter if the war was or is ‘moral’ or not. The brave soldiers that put their lives on the line for their country, and died doing it, died for every citizen and legal resident of this country. Past, present, and future. This includes you. Even if you don’t want to admit it.

Posted by: Ron Brown at May 30, 2007 6:14 PM
Comment #221709
YES! ALL wars are for freedom.

I’m curious what you mean by this statement. When you say “ALL”, do you mean every war ever fought, independent of America’s involvement? And are you saying that all sides in every war are fighting for freedom?

If so, I’m curious how you interpret the “freedom” that Nazi Germany was fighting for. I guess they were fighting for the “freedom” to own the entire continent and wipe out races they didn’t like, but that’s an awfully misleading interpretation of freedom. I don’t consider a fight selfishly to preserve the ability to kill and enslave others to be a fight for freedom at all.

I’ll agree wholeheartedly that those resisting the Germans were in many cases fighting for freedom (those fighting for the Soviets against the Nazis had a more complicated case), however, that doesn’t mean that both sides were fighting for freedom, does it?

How about the Spanish Civil War, a proxy fight that was more about testing German military equipment and techniques than about the local issues. For what freedom was that war fought?

And you know what I think about your argument that the CSA’s fight to continue enslaving the black race was a form of fighting for freedom.

Posted by: LawnBoy at May 30, 2007 6:16 PM
Comment #221710

rahdigly,

They don’t serve and fight in wars YOU think is right or wrong; they do it for their country’s call.

That why I said they died doing their duties.

YOU think their duties was about freedom. I think their duties was doing what their country ask them, right OR wrong. And that why they deserve our respect.

But the wars, them, don’t deserve such respect. Wars are all about human failure to avoid resorting to violence. Memorial days are to remember. Remember soldiers who died doing their duties. And remember that every war is our failure to find a better solution than violence.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at May 30, 2007 6:23 PM
Comment #221711

I beg to differ with all of you.

Memorial Day is a day to honor those brave men and women who fought at the BEHEST of their countries.

It has nothing to do with whether the country as a whole wants them fighting (Iraq - Vietnam) but that they are doing the jobs they signed up to do and doing them with honor and pride.

It also does not matter what country they are from. Memorial Day should honor ALL those who have died during the course of being in the military, home or abroad. Whether at war or at peace.

To try to justify the WHY they have died is nonsense. To try to cast blame on other countries is equally silly.

Regardless of which side one is on in a military action, everyone believes they are on the “right” one.

I’m quiet sure the Germans believed they were on the “right” side, just as the terrorists in Iraq or the soldiers from North Vietnam believed they were on the “right” side as well. I CAN DISAGREE WITH THEM,, but they still have the right to believe what they believe. And I will HONOR that belief.

Memorial Day is ABOUT the MEN and WOMEN who have died serving their countries. PERIOD.

Memorial Day has nothing to do with freedom, right or wrong issues, or politics. It is a reminder of what ANY WAR can COST in the blood of our YOUNG people. And that cost has always proven to be very high.

Posted by: Linda H. at May 30, 2007 6:26 PM
Comment #221715

Linda H. & Ron Brown
Couldn’t have said it better myself. Thank you

Posted by: KAP at May 30, 2007 6:56 PM
Comment #221716

LawnBoy
In every war someone is fight for their freedom because someone has either taken it or is trying to take it. That would mean that not every side is fighting for freedom. But one side is.

Posted by: Ron Brown at May 30, 2007 6:57 PM
Comment #221721

Ron Brown,

In every war someone is fight for their freedom because someone has either taken it or is trying to take it.

I guess the word you’re looking for here is life, not freedom.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at May 30, 2007 7:50 PM
Comment #221722

Philippe

“I guess the word you’re looking for here is life, not freedom.”

no. the word he used was correct, there are many people in this world that are alive, but they aren’t free.

Posted by: dbs at May 30, 2007 7:59 PM
Comment #221723

rahdigly, that’s a crock. Every soldier DOES NOT enlist for duty, honor, or country. Many enlist as a means of affording education, others enlist to get the $40,000 sign up bonus, which they could not dream of in the private sector. Many enlist out of shame to not to enlist. Many enlist to learn a career.

These facts are indisputable, as many soldiers themselves will tell you these were their reasons for enlisting. But, none of this detracts from the willingness and determination to uphold their contract even during the heat of battle and threat to personal life or limb. Nor does it detract from the pride nearly all soldiers experience in being able to serve their country, which they do in addition, to their other reasons for enlisting and staying in the service.

One need not make altruistic gods of our soldiers, to honor them and thank them for their service. But, I never met the soldier yet, who said they signed up to die or lose their legs or brain. They did not sign up to make those sacrifices. Those sacrifices are the luck of the draw, the risk one assumes while at the same time denying that oneself will be the one to make that sacrifice.

The soldier who consciously decides to give up his life for his comrades or the mission is rare, which is why there are medals and ceremonies reserved for just such rarities. Being a soldier is a complex set of commitments, decisions, rewards and trade-offs.

I believe it does no honor to write soldiers off as simple one track minds who cannot wait to give their lives or limbs in order to be a hero. That cheapens and dishonors the intelligence, the difficult decisions and commitments which make up a soldier in an all volunteer force. They are far smarter than that, and far more sophisticated. They are not order-taking automotons living by a do or die simple maxim.

Posted by: David R. Remer at May 30, 2007 8:12 PM
Comment #221724

Philippe
6 million Jews lost both life and freedom during WW2. Do they count? You said 1.5 million Frenchmen lost their lives and freedom in both world wars. Do they count? 100,000 shitte Muslems died by Sadams chemical weapons. Do they count? We can go on and on about every war that was ever fought in the history of this world. Yes they were all fought for life and FREEDOM one way or another.

Posted by: KAP at May 30, 2007 8:14 PM
Comment #221727

Ron Brown,

What you seem to be espousing is the High School Pep Rally school of politics and wars.

Preposterous to say the least.

NOBODY has EVER DIED for ME!!!!

Nothing good comes from violence. NOTHING.

Yes. I am a US citizen.

I reiterate:
No-one in Iraq EVER threatened my freedom.
Neither did anybody in Viet Nam.

Posted by: RGF at May 30, 2007 8:32 PM
Comment #221728

Linda, those are the kinds of things we should be thinking whenever we go into war. Treating Memorial Day as a special time to contemplate the costs of war rather makes me think of New Years’ resolutions that usually petter out and die within a month.

Posted by: Zeek at May 30, 2007 8:50 PM
Comment #221731

RGF


“Nothing good comes from violence. NOTHING”


actually the violence of war is what won this country it’s independance. it also freed europe from the nazis. you may not like it, but it does have its place. the sole purpose of any fighting force is to have the ability to inflict so much violence on an enemy, so as to be a deterent to an attack in the first place. to say nothing good ever comes from violence is false. with out a strong military this country would have been overrun a long time ago.

Posted by: dbs at May 30, 2007 8:53 PM
Comment #221732

dbs,

NOTHING good from violence.

This country WAS overrun already.
I have many relatives who will reaffirm this fact for your consideration.

As for this country’s freedom? That has more to do with Britain being distracted with concerns elsewhere.
As for the Nazis and the evil they did -
We, and our allies, arrived too late for 6 million Jews.

NOTHING GOOD comes from violence. NOTHING!

Posted by: RGF at May 30, 2007 9:00 PM
Comment #221734

Dana,

I of course agree with what you say, and that we owe people who put their lives on the line, however I don’t think it’s appropriate to compare Jesus’s crucifixion with people who fight in wars. What Jesus did, and preached, was fundamentally different from someone who fights or supports violence, in the form of war. Jesus didn’t fight for a government or do anything comparable to a soldier’s mission.

David,
Finally a post with common sense, that recognizes that this isn’t just a black-and-white situation.

Yes, of course soldiers need to be honored for the risk they take, however that doesn’t mean we need to worship soldiers or make the people who honorably serve into some kind of automaton. I only wish certain Republican politicians spent half as much time making sure our soldiers have good medical care and proper equipment as they do “supporting” them by accusing anyone who disagrees with Bush of treason. If people tend to be tired or skeptical of “support the troops” type of rhetoric, I think it’s only because of what Bush and his cronies have done to the concept.


“The point of public relations slogans like “Support our troops” is that they don’t mean anything… That’s the whole point of good propaganda. You want to create a slogan that nobody’s going to be against, and everybody’s going to be for. Nobody knows what it means, because it doesn’t mean anything. Its crucial value is that it diverts your attention from a question that does mean something: Do you support our policy? That’s the one you’re not allowed to talk about.”
Noam Chomsky

Posted by: thom at May 30, 2007 9:15 PM
Comment #221739

RGF
There’s nothing high school about it. It’s just plain hard facts. Something you don’t want to be bothered with maybe. Just facts anyway.
As a citizen of this country you are the country. Just like every other citizen of this country is. This country, or any other country, is not made up of the government. It is made up of people.
It is the country that sends it’s troops to war. And the troops fight and die for the country. That means THEY DO die for you. Like it or not.
Every soldier that ever fought for this country has fought for you. And every soldier that has ever died in one of this country’s wars HAS DIED for you. Just like they have for me and every other citizen of this country.
It’s just a shame you can’t be more appreciative of the sacrifice they made for you.

Posted by: Ron Brown at May 30, 2007 10:30 PM
Comment #221741

Philippe
No, Life isn’t the word I wanted to use. I would have used it if I did.
Like I said, In every war someone is fighting for freedom.
But then, while they’re fighting for that freedom they are trying to stay alive.

Posted by: Ron Brown at May 30, 2007 10:34 PM
Comment #221742

Ron,

Yes, we very much appreciate the sacrifices of the Union soldiers that fought for us and for our freedom.

Posted by: LawnBoy at May 30, 2007 10:35 PM
Comment #221744

RGF

as for the first statement, not sure what you mean, my guess is your of native american heritage, in which case i understand your point. the other option would be your talking about illegal imigration in which case i agree.

as for the other two, we fought a war for our independence. the british didn’t just turn thier backs and walk away. in fact we fought two wars if you include the war of 1812.

we may have arrived to late for 6 million jews, but managed to get there in time to save many. your all or nothing attitude in this respect makes little sense. the fact that we can win a war in order to liberate the people of europe, means those who died did not die for nothing. this is proof that violence is somtimes nessesary to restore peace, and good can come of it.

Posted by: dbs at May 30, 2007 10:49 PM
Comment #221752

I read this article and many of the posts from the righties here, and to me, it sounds exactly like you’re all taking turns playing the world’s smallest violin. Seriously, you should be ashamed of yourselves for spouting off so much maudlin, jingoistic bullcrap.

For pity’s sake folks, MOST of us have had members of our families fight, be wounded, or die in wars. And if we are honest with ourselves and with each other we should be able to admit that too few of those wars were really about fighting for freedom.

World War II was a war about trying to hold onto freedom or else surrender the world to fascism and tyranny. My husband’s uncle gave his life fighting that war, and two of my uncles fought, though only one of them was seriously wounded. Every one of those men knew exactly what they were fighting for.
Unlike them, my cousin, the son of one of my uncles who fought in WWII, was drafted and sent off to the senseless war that was Vietnam where he had half his arm blown off. Both he and my uncle know damn well that he fought and was maimed not for “our freedom”, but rather because a bunch of power-mad, thoroughly wacked-out men didn’t think twice about playing tin soldiers with real mens lives.

Today in Iraq, we have the very same scenario being played out before our eyes: senseless war and occupation (again where the people don’t want us there), and lots of killing and maiming, and sacrificing of the lives of our own people — for nothing but a bunch of power-mad, thoroughly wacked-out men and their nutty, unrealistic dreams of conquest and victory.

Iraq is not a war for our freedom. It’s not even a war about Iraqi freedom — because if it was, the Iraqi people sure as hell wouldn’t be marching through the streets chanting ‘Death to America’ and they wouldn’t be shooting at/blowing up our soldiers every chance they get.

Are our soldiers brave? Yeah, they are. And should we honor what they do? Yes, of course we should. Because regardless of whether or not we agree with the war they’re being made to fight now, every single one of us knows that one day, maybe even tomorrow, they could in fact be fighting for our actual freedom, rather than simply because our current nut-job leaders ordered them halfway around the world to fight for no damn good reason.
Our soldiers are also good at following orders, and have been trained to fight whenever they’re told to — because that’s what it has always meant to be a soldier. Even when they think that the men who are commanding them are power-mad and wacked out, and have nutty unrealistic dreams of conquest and victory. It’s a hell of a job, and they deserve a lot of credit for being willing and able to do whatever it is they’re told to do.

That being said, we are civilians, and we have equally serious responsibilities as well. One of the most important is to let our leaders know that they can’t use and abuse our soldiers on behalf of their mad, imperialistic fantasies. And so we must speak out, and write letters and articles, and sign petitions, and protest, and be civilly disobedient whenever we feel they are using their power unwisely and abusing our soldiers lives and well being.

Many people consider such dissent horribly and traitorously wrong (meanwhile, the rest of us know full well that dissent is as American as apple pie). You seem to feel that in times of war, Americans must always follow their leaders blindly and unquestioningly. Obviously you aren’t grasping that holding such an attitude is highly ironic. That you’d be continually mouthing the words “Freedom” but clearly without understanding or appreciating the concept of freedom at all. Without understanding or appreciating the responsibility and duty we all have as free citizens to question our leadership and demand that they keep in mind the fact that they’re supposed to be working for US.
We the People. A government by and for the people. With the Constitutional right of free speech, freedom of the press, and the right to petition our government for a redress of grievances.

And now I’ll let you get back to passing around that teensy red, white ‘n’ blue violin, but before I do, let me briefly acknowledge all the excellent replies and points being made here. I especially liked what Andre, David Remer, Linda H., Lawnboy, Philippe, thom and RGF had to say.

Posted by: Adrienne at May 31, 2007 3:30 AM
Comment #221755

There are warriors fighting for freedom in Iraq. Freedom from what they view as occupation by an oportunistic greedy foreign power.

Posted by: PorgyTirebiter at May 31, 2007 4:55 AM
Comment #221762
There’s nothing high school about it. It’s just plain hard facts. Something you don’t want to be bothered with maybe. Just facts anyway.

No, Ron, your argument is based on propaganda and rhetoric, not facts.

You claim that all wars are fought (by at least one side) for freedom. Then which side was fighting for freedom in the Spanish-American War? While high-minded rhetoric might have been used to defend it, the war was really about which colonial power would get to rule over Cuba, Guam, the Philippines, and Puerto Rico. The freedom of the participants wasn’t really a consideration.

What about the Eastern Front of the European Theater of WWII? Was it the Hitler or Stalin that was leading forces fighting for freedom? In reality, neither was. At the beginning, the Germans were fighting to conquer and the Soviets were fighting to survive, but the tables turned later (so is mere survival your definition of freedom? Do you define the loser of any war to be fighting for freedom). And no matter who won, the areas conquered by the victor would end up with less freedom than they had before the fighting. Remember that many Soviet citizens initially welcomed the Nazi armies as liberators because of their hatred of the Communist regime, and then welcomed the Soviets as liberators later when the tide turned. Both sides were just that bad.

How about the wars that made up the Scramble for Africa? Various colonial powers fought each other over the rights to subjugate parts of Africa. Who was fighting for freedom then?

Really, your argument that all wars are for freedom is reductionist to an absurd level. Wars are fought for many, many reasons, including ideology, resource competition, jingoism, humanitarian concerns, ego, and (yes) freedom). However, freedom as we modern Americans conceive of it is a relatively new concept, and it is not the reason for the majority of wars, no less ALL wars as you claim.

War can be noble in rare cases, but to claim that all war has the noble cause of freedom behind it is just part of the “High School Pep Rally school of politics and wars”. It’s propaganda.

Posted by: LawnBoy at May 31, 2007 8:39 AM
Comment #221763

The purpose of Memorial Day is to remember ALL those they made the ultimate sacrifice in service to this country in EVERY war this country has fought. Not just he ones you agree with.

Agreed. That is why I write that I object to those who associate the sacrifice with the cause, particularly a war we are currently in (and which, at the present moment, a majority of the citizens oppose). We can honor their sacrifice and oppose the war at the same time, all the while remaining completely loyal citizens.

Posted by: bobo at May 31, 2007 9:09 AM
Comment #221773

Soldiers do not fight for freedom. They don’t fight for Nations. They don’t fight for glory. They fight for their brothers in combat.

“They don’t hate us for our freedom” -Ron Paul

The Republicans ignore his candidacy at their own peril. He is the voice of the real America.

Posted by: barneygoogle at May 31, 2007 12:04 PM
Comment #221784

Here is what an enormous number of our soldiers really think about the Iraq War:

“When are we going to get out of here?”
“I didn’t want to come back… . We’re waiting to get blown up.”
“We’re not making any progress. It just seems like we drive around and wait to get shot at.”
“It’s just more troops, more targets.”
“It’s like everything else in this war. It hasn’t changed.”
“We don’t feel like we’re making any progress”

But all of you tiny violin players would no doubt rather read how Lieberman thinks the exact opposite is true. That instead everything is going splendidly in Iraq and how leaving would be a complete disaster,
so here is the link to the entire story.

Also, your fingers holding that miniature bow are sure to quiver with patriotic pride when you read about how Bush thinks our Army should remain in Iraq for 50 years just like we have in South Korea.

Posted by: Adrienne at May 31, 2007 1:39 PM
Comment #221786

Barney:
““They don’t hate us for our freedom” -Ron Paul

The Republicans ignore his candidacy at their own peril. He is the voice of the real America.”

Plenty of Liberal Democrats have been saying the same thing for YEARS now. Oh, but how could we forget, liberal voices aren’t allowed to be the voice of the “real America”, isn’t that right?

Posted by: Adrienne at May 31, 2007 1:54 PM
Comment #221788

barneygoogle

just checked out the ron paul website. looks good up front. i’ll have to keep an eye on him. thanks for the info. thus far none of the other repubs look worth a damn, and the dems look even worse.

Posted by: dbs at May 31, 2007 2:35 PM
Comment #221794

dbs,

Many see him as a long shot. He’s not well known. I’m from near his district in Texas, and Socially I’m progressive. I don’t agree with Ron Paul on abortion, though I understand his stance that it’s a state’s right issue and he is morally opposed to it.

While in the past, I’ve felt Libertarian Constitutional strict constructionists were overly idealistic, I have come around to his point of view. We need to get back to basics. Government spending and intrusion into our lives has grown out of control. This care-taker attitude has led us down this special interest path that also led us into Iraq. It’s time for a change. Don’t let the milk toast RINO’s convince you that Ron Paul is fringe. He is dead on target.

Adrienne,
I think the labels liberal and conservative have become completely meaningless, except as an epithet slung about by Rep and Dem team players, while our Republic is sold to the highest bidder.

Posted by: barneygoogle at May 31, 2007 4:34 PM
Comment #221797

Barney:
“I think the labels liberal and conservative have become completely meaningless, except as an epithet slung about by Rep and Dem team players,”

Only those who think they are meaningless labels consider those terms epithets.
I don’t. I’m very proud of being a Liberal thinker and voter and I know exactly what that means.
Btw, if you hate being labeled a conservative, and you don’t care at all about the Republicans, then why on earth would you come to the Republican and conservative side of this blog to stump for a Republican who labels himself a conservative?

“while our Republic is sold to the highest bidder.”

I think is very true of the majority of Republicans, and of the Republican Lite Democrats (aka DLC Dems, Blue Dog Dems).

Posted by: Adrienne at May 31, 2007 4:53 PM
Comment #221798

Oh, and Barney, what did you mean by the term “real Americans”?

Posted by: Adrienne at May 31, 2007 4:54 PM
Comment #221801

Adrienne,

Every Republican labels himself a true conservative, which is why the term is meaningless.

You seem to be offended by the fact that I am avering for a Republican. Do you know his positions? Do you know mine?

The problem I have with both parties is that in the last 25+ years neiher party has done anything but expand government and cater to special interests. Neither party has made serious effort to end this debacle in Iraq.

By “real Americans” I’m refering to Joe Blows who go to work everyday, never get rich, don’t get involved in big social or political issues, take care of their families and leave their neighbors alone. They don’t hire tax attorneys to avoid taxes and don’t expect to Uncle Sam to pay their bills. They live and let live, and take care of their own. I’m refering to the Americans that have begun a ground swell of support for Ron Paul.

Posted by: barneygoogle at May 31, 2007 5:06 PM
Comment #221807

Barney:
“Every Republican labels himself a true conservative, which is why the term is meaningless.”

But obviously not to those who consider themselves true conservatives like Ron Paul, since he uses that label and doesn’t consider it meaningless.

“You seem to be offended by the fact that I am avering for a Republican.”

No, I’m offended that you aren’t aware that there have been plenty of Liberals amongst the Democrats and those in the Green Party that have been saying exactly what Ron Paul is saying — that it isn’t our freedom we have become so hated for, it’s our foreign policies. I’m also rather offended that you think you have so much authority that you get to define what a real American is.

“Do you know his positions?”

Pretty much, yes. He’s a dog-eat-dog Libertarian who calls himself a conservative Republican, and who is against the Iraq War.

“Do you know mine?”

Only what you just wrote:
“I’ve felt Libertarian Constitutional strict constructionists were overly idealistic, I have come around to his point of view.”

“The problem I have with both parties is that in the last 25+ years neiher party has done anything but expand government and cater to special interests.”

Not precisely correct, after all, Clinton did try to limit the expansion of government. I agree there is too damn much catering to special interests. It’s taken over our government, and it needs to be stopped.

“Neither party has made serious effort to end this debacle in Iraq.”

You’re right, and it’s nothing but madness.

“By “real Americans” I’m refering to Joe Blows who go to work everyday, never get rich, don’t get involved in big social or political issues, take care of their families and leave their neighbors alone. They don’t hire tax attorneys to avoid taxes and don’t expect to Uncle Sam to pay their bills. They live and let live, and take care of their own.”

That covers the vast majority of people in this country. And they come in every political stripe imaginable.

“I’m refering to the Americans that have begun a ground swell of support for Ron Paul.”

No, sorry but you don’t get to designate everyone who doesn’t support Ron Paul as something other than a real American. It’s too ridiculous.

Posted by: Adrienne at May 31, 2007 5:39 PM
Comment #221811

I haven’t labeled anyone who supports someone other than Ron Paul a non-real American. That is your illogical extension.I didn’t set up a category of real and non-real Americans. I simply described reality for most of us.

The difference between Ron Paul and those who “tried” to reduce government and our involvement in Iraq, is he has held office and consistently voted No to these bills. He has earned a nickname of Dr. No. Except for Kucinich, who wants immediate withdrawal from Iraq? He will not reduce government. The Green Party hasn’t yet held National Office. They will not reduce government.

You Say Clinton tried to reduce government…ummm How? Isn’t he/she DLC according to your definition?

As to dog-eat-dog Libertarian, I think that’s an unfair description of someone who ascribes to Jeffersonian democracy. I acknowledge that was my initial fear of him, but one must realize he would have to deal with Congress, and he has filled out his positions more thoroughly by acknowledging that a transition would have to take place.

Stop the madness, Adrienne, look into Ron Paul.

BTW, I think a real Liberal is a Libertarian. That should piss you off.

Posted by: barneygoogle at May 31, 2007 6:03 PM
Comment #221816

barneygoogle

i would think if you take the term liberal literaly, it would be someone who believes in live and let live, not trying to over regulate the lives of others, not to tax any more than nessesary to provide for infrastructure, in order to keep gov’t out of peoples lives as much as posible, and especially not to take the rights of others away because you don’t agree with those rights. this word really doesn’t describe either of the two major parties as far as i can tell. both seem want to practice thier own brand of control. the greater good should not take presidence over the constitution, or the god given rights of individuals to live thier lives in piece, so long as they don’t bother anyone else.

Posted by: dbs at May 31, 2007 6:56 PM
Comment #221820

Okay Barney, I’ll let your comments regarding “the voice of real America” and “real Americans” go — though I disagree with the very idea of someone wanting to define things that way. I guess because usually it just means someone is defining their own beliefs as being the best, and the most authentically American.

“The difference between Ron Paul and those who “tried” to reduce government and our involvement in Iraq, is he has held office and consistently voted No to these bills.”

Well since I’m not a conservative, or a Republican or a Libertarian, I myself prefer the difference between Russ Feingold’s ideas for reducing government and being fiscally responsible in contrast to the majority of the people in the Democratic Party.

“Except for Kucinich, who wants immediate withdrawal from Iraq?”

Most of those who just voted against giving a blank check with the Iraq spending bill want a timetable and a speedy withdrawl from Iraq. You may not realize it, but there are plenty of Dems who have been consistent in their votes against this war. And truthfully, if it wasn’t for them, I’d no longer be a Democrat.

“The Green Party hasn’t yet held National Office.”

Well, neither have the Libertarians, but doesn’t mean either aren’t capable of proving themselves up to the task of governing. Personally, I’m hoping one day we’ll have more than only two parties in America.

“They will not reduce government.”

If you would be so kind, define “reduce government” for me. Because if you really are like most Libertarians, that means pretty much doing away with anything with the word “Public” or “Federal” in it. It means doing away with anything that helps those who weren’t born with silver spoons in their mouths, or those who managed to get rich some other way. To me too many of the Libertarian’s positions mark them as not seeming to care at all if a lot of their fellow citizens suffer or go without opportunities in many ways, and for a multitude of reasons.

“You Say Clinton tried to reduce government…ummm How? Isn’t he/she DLC according to your definition?”

Yes, they both are DLC, and yes, being a liberal I can’t stomach Republican Lite for the most part. But I always try give credit where it is due — and since he try to reduce government in many ways and did manage to create surpluses (that Bush squandered), I give his administration points for that.

“As to dog-eat-dog Libertarian, I think that’s an unfair description of someone who ascribes to Jeffersonian democracy.”

I don’t think its unfair at all, nor do I think Libertarianism shares much in common with Jeffersonian democracy.

“I acknowledge that was my initial fear of him, but one must realize he would have to deal with Congress, and he has filled out his positions more thoroughly by acknowledging that a transition would have to take place.”

All president’s have to deal with Congress — well, except for Bush who got a rubber-stamp for most of his tenure from the GOP. Care to elaborate on what Paul means by “transition”?

“Stop the madness, Adrienne, look into Ron Paul.”

He seems the best among the Republican candidates Barney, but I can’t and won’t vote for him, seeing as I’m a Liberal.

“BTW, I think a real Liberal is a Libertarian.”

Ah, I see you’re referring to “Classical Liberalism.” That is an outdated and not very apt term for what the Libertarians have come to represent. Really, it makes about as much sense as the Neocons considering themselves “New Conservatives”.

“That should piss you off.”

Nah, I’ve heard it before.

Posted by: Adrienne at May 31, 2007 7:51 PM
Comment #221832

I beg to differ that Clinton “tried” to reduce government. He talked it to death, but in the end he didn’t come close, no cigar. (pun intended)

I also disagree that he produced a surplus. That’s only true if you ignore the unfunded SSA benefits and other long term commitments. That kind of accounting landed some Enron folks in jail.

He did reduce the deficit and definitely did a better job at containing government growth than Bush has.

Jefferson was the original anti-federalist. It’s Hamilton and Adams that screwed things up.

My point about Ron Paul is not that I believe that A) He could return the government to the original idea of small government.
B)He truly believes he can accomplish this in one term or even two.
C) He is talking about the reality of budgets and governmental intrusion.
D) He is the ONLY candidate taking us in the right direction
E) If I’m not willing to sacrifice my pet pig then I can hardly expect anyone else to sacrifice theirs.
F) Ron Paul is not a pacifist who believes if we are nice, then everyone else will play along. The one role the federal govenment must play is defense of our borders from real enemies.

I’m sorry that you feel simply because Paul is Republican, you cannot support or even look at him as a candidate. That seems rather small tent of you.

Liberalism was born of a yearning to be free of religious and corrupted state interests. We are at that place once again. The state is so engorged on it’s own power and wealth, that it cannot be trusted to pursue the interests of the people. Politicians know they must wield power to have relevance, and can only achieve that through submission to monied interests.

I am not an advocate of letting the rich run things, at all. If we wish to regain a government that responds to the proletariat, we must disengage it from the pig trough that the rich are feeding upon. That is what Ron Paul is selling.

We didn’t go to war because the Nation cried out that we should attack Iraq. Who benefitted from the “Neocon” premise?

I want to stop this Liberal/Conservative division that the media generates. The ideas are not antithetical. Jefferson knew this. We need to relearn it.

Email me at barne_y@hotmail.com and I’ll tell you a secret.

Posted by: barneygoogle at May 31, 2007 10:06 PM
Comment #221852

Barney:
“I’m sorry that you feel simply because Paul is Republican, you cannot support or even look at him as a candidate. That seems rather small tent of you.”

Barney, my own party is currently full of GOP Lites who seem to be acting more and more like Joe Lieberman every day. Trust me, the Democratic circus tent is already too bloody large and bursting to let out more seams. I also have to admit that I’ve grown weary enough just standing beside so many cowardly nail biters who are not only afraid of the Fox News/Karl Rove slime machine, but are even petrified of calling themselves Liberals.
So, I’m not voting for a Republican.

Look at it this way, America has got to have some opposition toward the nation constantly moving ever rightward — even if it’s only to keep Ronnie Raygun’s face from being carved into Mt. Rushmore.

Btw, I agree that Jefferson was anti-federalist, yet I still don’t see how you figure that Libertarians are his latter day philosophical brethren.

“Email me at barne_y@hotmail.com and I’ll tell you a secret.”

Hmm… Okay, but first you have write back here and promise not to get too weird on me.

Posted by: Adrienne at June 1, 2007 12:54 AM
Comment #221858

A better way to understand what liberalism and conservatism really are is to look at them both through history and see what each side’s goals and motivations really are, as opposed to the current policies or proposed legislation of either. In a sense conservatism and liberalism are really just relative. Liberalism is the desire to increase freedom, justice, and opportunity for the many (often including groups you have no personal stake in). Conservatism is the support of the status quo, authority, gaining and keeping power, and tradition.

The real reason why “classical liberalism” and pure laisseiz faire capitalism isn’t liberalism today I think has to do with how societies change, and how it doesn’t work as well today. Back then, the economy in America was largely based on agriculture and labor, while of course there were other business opportunities most citizens (meaning white male landowners at least) made their living from the land they owned. Before the industrial revolution large corporations with immense power and influence on the government and control over peoples’ lives didn’t exist as they do today. Business activity wasn’t capable of causing widespread environmental damage, nor causing widespread hunger and poverty as easily as in the Great Depression. And of course relatively self-sufficient landowners weren’t dependent on large businesses for nearly every need (whether transportation, communications services, etc). So yes classical liberalism certainly was liberal then, in the sense of ensuring people had control of their future and there wasn’t a large entitled aristocracy. But nowadays the same ideology would lead to a loss of freedom because of the nature of modern coporations and the control they have, while of course being desirable to anyone whose number one goal is to make as much money as possible no matter the cost to anyone, whether the public, environment, or even democracy itself. Since it only works well for the few at the expense of the rest of us, that’s why “reducing government” when meaning eliminating things like accountability, environmental protections, progressive taxes, and minimum wages, is now conservative.

Here’s a very good article (while admittedly very biased) on the subject:
http://polaris.gseis.ucla.edu/pagre/conservatism.html

A devastating critique of libertarianism and similar philosophies:
http://world.std.com/~mhuben/libindex.html

An FAQ on one view of liberalism:
http://www.huppi.com/kangaroo/ShortFAQ.htm


Liberals certainly have made mistakes, and of course many conservatives have good ideas. In many ways these are just different ways of looking at things, one person may see an EPA official as infringing on a businessman’s freedom while another might think children have the right to breathe clean air. Perhaps more fairly, things like affirmative action to ensure group diversity at the expense of fairness and equal treatment to the individual. While labels of communism and the like have always been strawmen, I think liberals may have went too far in regulating interactions between individuals (political correctness, multiculturalism, etc.) which can cause people to feel resentment. In general though it’s pretty accurate to say conservatism supports the status quo and the people in power, while liberals generally to oppose it and view it with suspicion.

Posted by: thom at June 1, 2007 2:22 AM
Comment #221864

Adrienne,

Ron Paul quotes Jefferson all the time. His belief in the limited powers of the presidency are an important part of his campaign. The checks and balances of the Congress and the need for Constitutional amendments rather than end runs of the Constitution are major reasons I am supporting him.

While I do not see Jefferson as the all around hero of the American story, he had the understanding of limited powers….even if he overrode some of those in his own presidency.

I see Ron Paul as changing the debate.

You may think I’m weird politically, but you’ll have a laugh at what I have to tell you.

Thom,

Thanks for the links. I only skim read these, as I am somewhat bothered by their obvious slants. They attack Libertarianism by first defining it as wacko, then proceeding to affirm their own biases.

Jefferson allowed for amending the Constitution not making end runs around it. If the Congress finds it too difficult to amend, then don’t “reinterpret” it to mean what it doesn’t say.

I do not believe we can reasonably return to a Jefferson sized government and I do not a responsible Libertarian that does. Libertarians do not propose making a signing statement abolishing government and taxes. There is that small body called Congress, the people’s representation, that must be involved.

Saying Classic Liberalism no longer applies is simply saying you don’t believe in Classic Liberalism and now want to apply a new definition to it. This is the same dishonest game that Republicans have done to Conservatism. Fitting everything, including the kitchen sink into a word, simply makes it a pejorative term, it doesn’t redefine it.

Posted by: barneygoogle at June 1, 2007 8:55 AM
Comment #221897

Ron,

I understand your point. However, I disagree. While I cerainly do appreciate the sacrifice our veterans have made, both those that made it home and those that did not, I also abhore that fact that they made it at all. Especially so uselessly.

Again I must reiterate:
Nobody in either Iraq or Viet-Nam ever threatened my freedom.

Further I will assert:
We have done much to threaten those in Iraq and in Viet-Nam.

I respect the sacrifice made by our soldiers and I am disgusted by those that required such a futile waste of life and limb and peace from so many their own fellow citizens.

OUR CONSTITUTION may have benefitted from not being subeject to the crown of England (like other commonwealth nations), but it stands on its own merits. Perhaps our life without any possible interference from the crown was born of war, but our freedom was not. We merely shifted our allegiences through war.

The Constitution itself was born of peace.
NOW, it’s dying of neglect by those who have sworn to uphold it. …as a result of violence born of lies and injustice specifically contrary to the Constitution and all that it stands for.

Posted by: RGF at June 1, 2007 2:55 PM
Comment #221928

RGF
Did anyone in Europe threaten your freedom? Did anyone in Japan threaten your freedom? And I know no one in Korea threatened you freedom. Yet our soldiers went over there and fought and died for this country. Is their sacrifice any nobler than the one made by those in Vietnam or Iraq?
It doesn’t matter the war was fought or why. The fact is our soldiers have always stood and delivered when called on. And some of our soldiers have died answering their countries call.
We can’t pick and chose those we will honor and those we won’t. They all made the supreme sacrifice in service to their country and deserve the undying gratitude of their fellow countrymen.

Posted by: Ron Brown at June 1, 2007 8:39 PM
Comment #222217

Ron Brown,

Did anyone in Europe threaten your freedom? Did anyone in Japan threaten your freedom?

Hitler and Japan navies attacked and sunked Americans commercial ships before your country entered in war against them.
North Koreans, North Vietnameses and Iraqians never did.

Your citizens were attacked first vs North Koreans, North Vietnameses and Iraqians being attacked first. If all wars are for freedom, then in these later cases they were NOT for YOUR freedom, but their.

It doesn’t matter the war was fought or why. The fact is our soldiers have always stood and delivered when called on. And some of our soldiers have died answering their countries call. We can’t pick and chose those we will honor and those we won’t. They all made the supreme sacrifice in service to their country and deserve the undying gratitude of their fellow countrymen.

True. THEY DESERVED our respect.
But wars DON’T, whatever the cause.

Stop trying to associate them, and we’ll fall in agreement. Eventually.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at June 4, 2007 10:20 AM
Comment #222268

Ron,

Japan attacked us. Germany declared on us first. But…War is still war and I still abhor it completely. NOTHING good comes from it. Violence begets only violence ultimately leaving the whole world blind and toothless.

I disagree with you. What I feel for those who made the sacrifice, both those still alive and those that are not, is closer to respect for what they went through and concern that they were asked to it in the first place. THUS, how can I not evaluate the validity of the criteria employed by those who would ask for that kind of sacrifice?

I do NOT mean to detract from any veteran alive or dead. However, I ABSOLIUTELY will not be drawn into some rediculous process of non-thought that deifies the violence they endured and offers up such FALSE glory for the purpose of justifiying war. I feel respect and sadness for all of our country men and women who endured such sustained violence of human agaianst human. WAR, on the other hand, has no positive purpose and accoplishes NOTHING good. No exceptions. No construct or abstraction of human creation is worth the life of even ONE human being. No exceptions.

Posted by: RGF at June 4, 2007 7:18 PM
Comment #222780

The is another serious side to Memorial Day as seen from the perspective of those who have lost loved ones as a result of someones serving patriotically in other peoples countries.

It does not diminish the sorrow felt for U.S. citizens who have made the ultimate sacrifice. One my click on the URL below for an article on a church outreach site.
God bless,
sincerely,
jay

http://www.peacetaskforcenyc.org/PTFnews2.htm#Meditation

Posted by: jay janson at June 10, 2007 8:50 PM
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