August 1, 2005

The Resolve Of The Elite

Who's Paying for Our Patriotism?
President Bush assures us that the ongoing twin wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are worth the sacrifices they entail. Editorialists around the nation agree and say that a steadfast American public was willing to stay the course.

Should anyone be surprised by this national resolve, given that these wars visit no sacrifice of any sort -- neither blood nor angst nor taxes -- on well over 95 percent of the American people?

At most, 500,000 American troops are at risk of being deployed to these war theaters at some time. Assume that for each of them some 20 members of the wider family sweat with fear when they hear that a helicopter crashed in Afghanistan or that X number of soldiers or Marines were killed or seriously wounded in Iraq. It implies that no more than 10 million Americans have any real emotional connection to these wars. [..]

When our son, then a recent Princeton graduate, decided to join the Marine Corps in 2001, I advised him thus: "Do what you must, but be advised that, flourishing rhetoric notwithstanding, this nation will never truly honor your service, and it will condemn you to the bottom of the economic scrap heap should you ever get seriously wounded." The intervening years have not changed my views; they have reaffirmed them.

Unlike the editors of the nation's newspapers, I am not at all impressed by people who resolve to have others stay the course in Iraq and in Afghanistan. At zero sacrifice, who would not have that resolve?
Go read the whole Op-Ed by Uwe E. Reinhardt in the Washington Post.

The American Elite such as Editorialist, Media Corporations, Bush Administration and politicians advocate to the American people stay the course without themselves having to sacrifice nothing to the War effort. As long as no sacrifice comes to the elite their rhetoric or resolve will not change.

Let me repeat the question posed by Uwe E. Reinhardt, At zero sacrifice, who would not have that resolve?

President Bush
Bush emerged determined to retake the initiative and convince Americans that he's a decisive leader whether they agree with his policies or not. Offered numerous chances to second-guess his approach to Iraq, he rejected them all. "We must not waver," he said. [..]

"I hope today you got a sense of my conviction," he said as he wrapped up.
Who's Paying for Our Patriotism? Not, President Bush.


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