Thomas Rick’s Big Idea

| April 22, 2012 | 21 Comments

Thomas Ricks of the Center for a New American Security writes in the Washington Post that the all-volunteer military is a thing of the past and we need to go back to the draft. If the Center for a New American Security sounds familiar, it’s because they’re the same numbnuts who started this talk about doing away with 20-year retirement for the military that we talked about almost a year ago. I guess the CNASC has a business plan that calls for one new stupid idea every year. Of course, bringing back the draft is not a new idea, it’s more like the Left clinging to their glory days.

Ricks’ ill-considered reasoning is that if we still had a draft, the US would be less likely to commit military force where it’s needed;

Over the past decade, this all-volunteer force has been put to the test and has succeeded, fighting two sustained foreign wars with troops standing up to multiple combat deployments and extreme stress.

This is precisely the reason it is time to get rid of the all-volunteer force. It has been too successful. Our relatively small and highly adept military has made it all too easy for our nation to go to war — and to ignore the consequences.

The drawbacks of the all-volunteer force are not military, but political and ethical. One percent of the nation has carried almost all the burden of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, while the rest of us essentially went shopping. When the wars turned sour, we could turn our backs.

First of all, professional soldiers don’t want a bunch of draftees who we have to babysit for the period of their service. But Thomas Ricks doesn’t know anything about that.

According to Wiki, Ricks is two days younger than me, but his experience in the military is entirely academic. He has “reported” on the military, he is in the business of criticizing the military, but he has never spent a day in uniform, so basically, he doesn’t know that the impact of his idiot opinions would absolutely destroy the military as it exists today.

So, Ricks even admits that having a draft didn’t stop Lyndon Johnson from deploying drafted American soldiers to Vietnam, but he likes to give those draftees credit for ending our participation in the war against communists there. Combat forces went to Vietnam in 1965 and it was eight years before the last combat troops left Vietnam.

Since Ricks called the Iraq War “reckless”, lets’ look at that one and compare it to his reasoning; The US invaded Hussein’s Iraq in 2003 and the last combat troops left Iraq eight years later in 2011. Without a draft. So what’s his point?

Resuming conscription is the best way to reconnect the people with the armed services. Yes, reestablishing a draft, with all its Vietnam-era connotations, would cause problems for the military, but those could never be as painful and expensive as fighting an unnecessary war in Iraq for almost nine years. A draft would be good for our nation and ultimately for our military.

Yeah, that’s the same bullshit thing that the Left uses against home-schoolers – that their children aren’t socializing with the public school students who are steeped in liberal bullshit drivel. So the same process should be applied to the military – there should be more idiot hippies in the military to “connect” the military to society. Personally, I’m not all that happy to be connected to society after my service.

Society is jam-packed with pseudo-intellectuals like Ricks who think I need to be socialized and swallow their idiot opinions whole. I probably would have strangled a whole parcel of hippie draftees if anyone had inflicted those idiots on my platoon.

The fact that draft didn’t stop Johnson from getting involved in Vietnam should be proof enough for most people, but Ricks is upset that the anti-war movement in this century didn’t get much traction, and he’s flailing around trying to give them some more relevance. He ought to wade into a crowd of college students and preach to them about bringing back the draft. I’ll happily provide the crowd with baseball bats so they can properly address his big idea.

Thanks to Marine_7002 for the link.

Category: Antiwar crowd, Dumbass Bullshit, I hate hippies, Liberals suck

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  1. As an old fart, I can recall when we would employ different methods when the need arose. We drafted because there were not enough volunteers. Times changed, pay and benefits came closer to the civilian world and the draft was no longer needed. We have a military to be proud of, (and yes, we were proud of our draftees as well), that is performing very well, that is working. To revert to the draft would be a step backward in time. Today, we can see who will and who won’t, because they are doing it voluntarily. Other than to just screw things up, why change a good thing? Dopes.

  2. Ben says:

    Lefties were completely against the draft when we had one.

    It’s almost as if they’re miserable contrarians who will never be happy, no matter what.

    Don’t try to make liberals happy. It only encourages them to think that anyone gives a shit what they think.

  3. Ben says:

    Unfortunately, I think there are way too many young people today who cannot be made into soldiers, no matter what. The military will be poorer because of them.

  4. Outlaw13 says:

    The draft is a method, they are failing around trying to find a way to keep Republican presidents from getting us involved in armed conflict. I say Republican, because you may have noticed that the cries and howls of protest with few notible exceptions have died down in the last 4 years even though we are still fighting in various places around the globe.

  5. CI says:

    The only merit to the draft would be that Americans writ large have skin in the game. They’re largely self insulated from the decisions that get made inside the beltway.

    As the not-too-old saying goes…..the “Army and the Corps are at war….America is at the mall”.

    But the downsides of a draft in effect and it’s incompatibility with general liberty outweigh the positives.

  6. OWB says:

    Nope, there is NO way of pleasing a lib. Or whatever we are supposed to call them this week.

    Typical, though. If something is working, they want to muck it up.

  7. PintoNag says:

    Let’s see…they want to bring back the draft so they have a real reason to “protest” (ie, engage in hooliganism).

    Got it.

  8. Mike Kozlowski says:

    …I’m going to throw in a feature I’m reasonably sure Mr. Ricks never thought of – when a draft starts mixing people from all strata of society together, they’re going to get the same values…and take those values back out into the world. I somehow don’t think that he really WANTS his tight little world infected with values like duty, honor, and country…

    B/r,
    Mike

  9. Sh1fty says:

    Few years ago, his bright idea was to get rid of the service academies and war colleges – “in favor of civilian schools where their assumptions would be challenged”

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/04/16/AR2009041603483.html

  10. Jonn Lilyea says:

    Thanks, Sh1fty, I’d forgotten about that one.

  11. JustPlainjasin says:

    Such stupidity…

  12. Mud says:

    While I respect everyone’s perspective on this issue, and I agree that the primary argument, conscripts will degrade military effectiveness, I think there is a problem with a society when not everyone has “skin in the game.” We see this with the current income tax system where only 51% of the population pays any taxes. The 49% don’t have any “skin in the game” so there is no incentive….

    Having said that, I’m not an advocate for mandatory military service. Perhaps mandatory “National Service.” An individual coming out of high school is given a choice of civilian service or military service for 2 years or whatever.

    We all know the benefits of military service. We all recognize that not everyone is “cut out” for military service, but this shouldn’t be an obstacle for them. Consider the benefits of civilian service, working in homeless shelters, clinics, habitat for humanity type projects, there are endless needs in society for motivated young people to participate.

    I’m currently taking advantage of my GI Bill to earn a degree in Biology with follow on schooling to become a physician assistant. I would have no problem with someone doing civil service for 4 years to get similar college benefits. Its a lot better than coming out of school with $50K in debt.

    This post was long winded, but I think there is something to be said for either mandatory national service, or at least voluntary national service. Everyone gets skin in the game, so we stop being a society of 1% versus the 99%. (military vs non military)

  13. CI says:

    @Mud – This is philosophical, so I can’t wargame the ramifications in reality…but I would tack on to your thesis, the ability of only those who commit to national service of some sort [minus some reasonable exemptions] for the vote.

  14. WOTN says:

    A key basis of his “logic” is: “This is precisely the reason it is time to get rid of the all-volunteer force. It has been too successful.”

    In this he recognizes that a draft would make the military less effective, and that is precisely why he wants it. It’s the same reason Charlie Rangel wanted it.

    But not to worry, the current Administration wants a drone air force to fight wars it doesn’t call war, because then they have NO political backlash, and don’t feel the need to get Constitutional Authority to initiate the wars, er, “overseas contingency operations.”

    One nice thing about drones? They don’t vote against you in the next election. Of course you have to have a creative imagination to believe that dropping bombs from an unmanned aircraft is less of an act of war than is dropping them when the bird has a pilot, or when you send people to shoot other people. But when you can justify (Libya) blowing a commercial TV station because you don’t like what it’s saying, you already have a creative mind.

  15. Frank says:

    He may have the USA confused with Switzerland.

    All males, ages 19-34 (occasionally up to 50,) are given their basic training and sent home with their gear and personal weapons (which they are expected to maintain) and keep up their proficiency using an annual allotment of ammunition given them.

    Everybody, regardless of condition it seems, gets to participate in some way.

  16. Jonn: The fact that draft didn’t stop Johnson from getting involved in Vietnam should be proof enough for most people

    It is a detail, but not a trivial one… I believe it should be “Johnson from getting FURTHER involved in Vietnam”.

    One could argue that Kennedy laid the groundwork and The Draft was a peripheral issue initially.

    Kinda like the Blame Bush construct, but… Kennedy was killed.

  17. TacticalTrunkMonkey says:

    What would it matter?! Just like the 60’s, if your mommy or daddy had money or was a Senator, you aren’t gonna be drafted anyways, therefore, Congress wouldn’t think twice before sending us.

  18. Sig says:

    If we can’t find enough able people willing to take up arms to defend our republic, we do not deserve to keep it.

  19. Rurik says:

    Are they going to draft Americans for the army, or for a civilian forced labor corps? Trotsky did that during the early 1920s. Count on a Lib’rul to take a very dubious idea, and implement it as somethin even worse.

  20. Cedo Alteram says:

    CNAS is definitely connected to the left, the Clinton faction of the Democratic party to be exact. Ricks, Exum, Fick, Nagl, and, maybe Barno are the only people of any really note. Even that clique is far from omniscient. The rest are simply a bunch of blantant political hacks who masquerade as relevent.

    I have read three of Rick’s books, the last two being his Iraq ones, and thought they were well done. He came to many of the same conclusions I did and verified others. That said Ricks is an excellent researcher and he may have excellent sources but extrapolating beyond the obvious I don’t believe is a strength he possesses. He has a good memory for what has been successful but not the vision to contemplate what might be.

    Ricks’ argument is based on civic responsibilty and not combat effectiveness. Those who make such a point always forget the practicalities of enforcing or resourcing such a policy. They are willing to sacrifice one to create the other, in the naive belief that such would lead to less foreign adventures. The problem as Jon pointed out above, is there is no evidence to support that conclusion but there is in the potentional lives needlessly lost in such a force. Not do they factor curtailing our nation’s abilities to accomplish national objectives in such an equation.

  21. RayRaytheSBS says:

    How the heck can Ricks have used GEN Petraeus in his arguement to abolish the Service academies simply because he went to Princeton for his P.H.D? The first thing that came up on his wikipedia page was U.S.M.A Graduate. That seems to be a logical fallacy the size of the Titanic to me.

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