Friday, October 14, 2005

Always a pleasure
Another thorough debunking of the Chickenhawk meme, via InstaPundit. I enjoyed it, and I invite you to do the same.


Exile said...

that was about as thorough as a fart in a stiff wind (which is to say not at all). As I commented to the post, those without medical backgrounds SHOULD NOT make health policy, those without a legal experience SHOULD NOT decide what the law is, and while I would let an amateur gardener in my garden (if I had one) I would not let him run my farm.

the term chicken-hawk is appropriate because if some think a war is important enough for others to give their lives but not for themselves to do the same, they either (a) think they are more valuable human beings or (b) are hypocrites. either way they should not decide the fate of others.

return the favor maybe?

RFTR said...

You could not be more wrong. Think about this, Exile: you comment on healthcare and legal policy all the time! You comment on economic policy too—how many degrees in economics do you have?

Those who support the war have never made the argument that they are the only ones qualified to make that decision—those who oppose the war constantly make the argument that anyone who isn't willing to serve doesn't have the right to even comment.

It's bullshit, man.

Next: we have a volunteer army. No one has to give his life if he doesn't want to. If there were a draft, I might be inclined to agree.

In the meantime, yes, there are individuals who are more valuable than others in different spheres. Just like you wouldn't want an amateur gardener running your farm, I don't want Barbara Bush fighting in my army! Since I know you personally, I know you've met Barbara (we're talking about the daughter here, and referring to the call by many "anti-war" activists for Bush to send his daughter if he thinks the war is so important), do you really want her in the war?

No, her talents are best used elsewhere.

Some people do far more for this country by contributing to the economy than they ever could in the military—that's just the way it is.

Believing that a war is a just cause for trained soldiers to pursue, but not being willing to re-brand yourself as a soldier in the meantime does not a hypocrite make.

Now, if someone encouraged his or her son or daughter to dessert, or deserted him/herself while supporting the war, fine—call that person a hypocrite and chickenhawk.

Exile said...

I'd like to point out that I never said people with or without a background on an issue are not entitled to their opinion(and in the case you mentioned its me). My point about qualification being a valid criterion was that if somebody is making decisions that have an impact on the welfare of others, for instance men and women already serving in the armed forces, that person should at least have the frame of reference (read: command experience) to judge the validity of committing the lives of American citizens.

as to another point - of course I would not want Barbara in the army. what I would like is for W to have had some SERIOUS experience in the armed forces before he made the decision to push for war so might understand what it means for people to fight and die on orders.

to correct one detail, minor though it may be, I am quite certain I never met barbara the younger, though I have met her father (what a weirdo).

RFTR said...

Then you have no quarrel with anything in the post I linked to. The chickenhawk meme is not about the President. It's about claims that people like me are not allowed to support the war because I have not served in the military.

"If you support the war, then why don't you enlist. If you're not willing to enlist, then shut up." That's the line that the link is attacking, not whether or not the President needs to have served in the military.

Now, on that point, I still disagree. If we want the President to have experience with anything that affects the welfare of people, then we'll never have a qualified President, because no one individual can do everything. You're setting your sights a bit high.

Furthermore, I invite you to define "command experience." Is any officer sufficient, or need they commit large numbers of troops? Do they have to have combat experience, or is any command experience sufficient?

And by demanding command experience, are you discounting any of the many grunts currently serving in Iraq? Guys who've watched buddies die next to them, who know the rigors of combat better than anyone else are disqualified from making military decisions because they never commanded others?

And, for an article addressing the entire idea that a Commander in Chief must serve, I highly recommend this piece.