Monday, May 30, 2011

Superman's Dead: Happy Memorial Day

America has become the despised superhero

Among nations, we really are a superhero.  We assimilate immigrants like no other nation, we come to the aid of everybody, destroy dictators and kill bad guys...  Our frightful military prowess is unrivaled.

No Good Deed Goes Unpunished
We've earned nothing but hatred for our efforts.  We are Batman, fighting nihilistic Jokers but pissing everybody off in the process.  They level charges of torture, illegal prisons and habitually bombing Muslim wedding parties and killing innocent civilians.

We are excoriated for invading Iraq and Afghanistan...  by the same crowd that urges us to kill Khadaffi and wonders why we didn't stand up for the Shia in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia.

I think we should respect the wishes of our critics and stop interfering in the affairs of other nations unless invited and unless such involvement is vital to our national security.

What business is it of ours if other nations choose to enslave their daughters, kill gay people, perform genital mutilations and stone adulterers?  How is it in our national interest to stop such barbarity?

Our soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines now and throughout history have fought for all that is good and right, but ungrateful bastards worldwide repay them with hatred, slander and sneering, sniveling scorn.  Our troops fought like lions and opened up opportunities for the oppressed and benighted.  It is not our military's fault that some are too stupid, too venal or too corrupt to take advantage of this gift paid for with blood and treasure and ultimate sacrifice.

Our military has served with honor, and the nation is grateful

We should show our appreciation by demanding an end to altruistic foreign policy where those we are fighting for end up accusing us of war crimes and branding our troops international criminals.  We must also honor our troops by swearing off wars to make the world safe for other nations to scoop up Iraqi oil contracts.  We must demand our government explain why we are fighting and dying in corrupt Afghanistan while China extracts that country's mineral wealth.

The ultimate thank you for our troops would be to reunite them with their families and forswear global community organizing.
* - For a related post a few years back, see Bush as Batman. I've changed my opinion since then.  I still believe we are Batman, but I think the superhero needs to hang up the cape and let the carping whiners fight their own damned battles.

** - Yes, I realize I have conflated three different superheroes...


Always On Watch said...

Our soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines now and throughout history have fought for all that is good and right, but ungrateful bastards worldwide repay them with hatred, slander and sneering, sniveling scorn.

Somewhat along the lines of the rest of the family hates the rich uncle.

Sometimes, the ungrateful bastards are not openly disdainful. Sometimes they pay lip service to our military and all that our military have done. But it is only so much lip service and doesn't matter a hoot in hell.

I find myself becoming an isolationist.

Christopher - Conservative Perspective said...

With what you state one cannot ignore what others are talking about and that is the 'One World Order'.

How else could one explain "we are fighting and dying in corrupt Afghanistan while China extracts that country's mineral wealth"?

There is much going on behind the scenes and our military is being used and abused as pawn on the chess board of the world and it is high time it be stopped!

Silverfiddle said...

AOW: I like the rich uncle analogy. Time to cut off the little nieces and nephews.

Christopher: Agreed. You know, liberals were pointing this out years ago, in all honesty. Unfortunately, many of them were foaming at the mouth rabid and half-incoherent, so we rejected the message.

Jersey McJones said...

"altruistic foreign policy"


We are not and never were Superman - or Batman, or any other comic book superhero. We are America. A vast nation and empire.

We certainly have not always acted as the good guys either. Over the course of our history, we've done quite a few really bad things to quite a few people around the world.

Altruism may been been the rhetorical excuse for some of these bad or mistaken adventures, but rarely was it the real reason. We did these things because powerful interests wanted them done - from the fruit business a century ago, to Big Oil and the MIC today.

Our soldiers, of course, don't have any special interests in mind. They just serve their country. They have no more to do with why they fight than a fireman picks where the fires will be or the police pick where the crimes will be. They're just doing their job. And for that, on days like today, we honor the soldiers. All in all, they've always done good work, a few bad apples and incidents aside.

Unfortunately, after WWII, for the first time in our history, we did not disarm. We retained a massive standing military with hundreds and hundreds of bases at home and abroad, and all the peripheral businesses that come with it. It is extremely expensive, and over time it has become seemingly inextricably entrenched.

The American people have embraced stupid jingoism, claiming that anyone who opposes the military empire must be "foaming at the mouth rabid and half-incoherent" liberals. A stupid jingo assertion. So when reasonable people suggest cutting the ridiculous military estate, the jingos accuse us of hating the military, or hating the soldiers, or hating America, because in the mind of a jingo the military are indispensible superheros fighting against a world of "nihilistic" supervillians bent on, and capable of, destroying America. A stupid jingo assertion.

So, if we truly want to honor our soldiers, let's remember they are human beings just like you and I. And in the future, let's try to employ their service more wisely.


Christopher - Conservative Perspective said...

Silver, The difference between a liberal and myself saying the same thing is in the definition and or the meaning.

I am positive given your background and service you know exactly what I mean without further commentary on my part.

The Born Again American said...

I'm firstly going to thank you for a great post and then I'm going to politely ask Jersey McJerk to "eat s**t and die"... You and the rest of your sniveling kind should feel free to leave this country should it be the cause of your contempt..

Silverfiddle said...

Jersey: You don't need to explain to me about our military: I served.

And this comment reveals that, again for the umpteenth time, you misunderstood what I said:

The American people have embraced stupid jingoism, claiming that anyone who opposes the military empire must be "foaming at the mouth rabid and half-incoherent" liberals.

That is an erroneous interpretation of what I said. I am admitting that many on the left grasped this before we did, but because they were so foaming at the mouth and stinky, and their language so outrageous and vile, we were repulsed.

How you present your message means a lot.

Silverfiddle said...

Christopher: See my comment directly above. I did not intend to insult you.

I completely agree with your comments. I was just observing that liberals have been saying this for a long time and we conservatives are just now coming around.

Silverfiddle said...

Born again: Thank you for the compliment, but more importantly, thanks for your excellent commentary!

Jersey McJones said...

Well, Silver, you're an odd one. I wasn't really addressing what you said, as much as attaching it to the way other people think. Though you often seem very jingoistic, you then apply a very admirable and consistant form of nationalism to your logic.

Actually, only an idiot concerns themself with the style of a message. It's the message itself that matters. Americans can be very idiotic, though.


Finntann said...

I am curious Jersey, outside of "vast nation", who do you perceive to be the subject states of this "empire"? Afghanistan? Iraq? Or perhaps Britain, Germany, Japan, and Korea?

Or perhaps you see America as part of a vaster empire run by others?

Please do tell.

Jersey McJones said...

We are an economic and military empire. We have soldiers in over 140 countries, Finntann. We can and have projected our force unilaterally when it has suited us, though more often with compliant allies, often essentailly vassal states.

Get used to it. For all practical intents and purposes, we are a massive empire.


Anonymous said...

Another great post, Silver. Part of the problem is our Presidents can commit troops whereever they wnant without consulting Congress. This is not what the Founders had in mind.

John Carey said...

Great post Silver and thank you for your service. Jim is spot on. It has become to easy to employ our military in so-called police actions. If we actually followed the constitution just maybe our President no matter what party they represent wouldn't be so quick to pull the trigger. They might actually have to justify the use of military force.

Christopher - Conservative Perspective said...

Silver,, For the record I was not insulted nor did I perceive it as such, I was simply differentiating based upon the word's you used.

I am however if not insulted but dismayed at another's political BS here and again I am sure you know of what I speak.

Anonymous said...

It's fairly troublesome, Jersey, that you constantly assert that style counts for nothing, especially in written discourse.

Style counts for a lot as it separates those who have mastered their language and its various subtleties and those who have not.

Anyone can say that "the grass is green," but it takes a true intellectual mind to say it in a different way, in a way that gets you to think about the color of the grass in a different perspective.

To be sure, the acerbic rant style is a valid one and serves its purpose, but you have to be careful that you're not getting lost in your own rant, lest you sound condescending or angry.

When you view language as being one dimensional, it's no wonder that your thought process follows suit.

Jersey McJones said...

Well, Christopher, maybe this will be a refreshing word from me. I think I actually completely agree with you guys. Here's my take on it:

The constitution says the congress must maintain a navy but nothing else. They could raise land forces, but there is no enumeration to maintain it. It seems to me the Founders are saying that the Army should only be as big as our domestic needs, while the Navy would be our permanent projection of power.

Strangely enough, this particular argument againt the constitutionality of today's executive war powers coincides with the way I think you guys would prefer to see American projection of power, as do I:

We don't need hundreds and hundreds of bases abroad. We do not need a 4,000,000-boot standing military. Congress has no legitimate reason, no grave enough threat, to maintain such a ridiculous level of force, and they certainly have the power to end it. But they lack the moral fiber, and voters are dumb enough to believe paranoid-inducing propaganda.

In the end, it is not the president, though, who should be excoriated - after all, give a man power, expect him to use it. It is and always was congress who have not behaved constitutionally, and too for the SCOTUS for not stepping in.

Terrible crimes have been committed in the name of the United States, and doing us national injury to ourselves. The bad actors should be held constitutionally accountable. Congress and the courts have done nothing.

To congress, it's pork spending, and to the courts, it's career suicide. To the president, it's a ticket to ride.

If we pared down to a Naval-based power, heeding our incredibly prescient Founders, we could project all the air, marine, and naval power we would ever need to deal with the vast majority of foreign problems we standardly have to deal with.

It would at first be expensive to shift more to the navy, but I believe it would be far, far more cost effective than maintaining an endlessly standing million-man army - most of them at peace, not war. So much for the constitution.


Jersey McJones said...

I have two problems with the way Silver and a couple of other conservative bloggers I like put so much emphasis on style:

1: The style of the people they endorse strikes me as almost identical to the people they oppose. Different audiences, different messages, same style. Pull 'em at the anger-strings.

2: They demand a certain particular etiquette, ironically deriding other people's mirror demands. Everyone complains about the way everyone says things they don't like.

Yes, there is a place for style. But don't let it cloud your judgement. Remember, Silver just reminded us that people like me have been calling for a pared-down, constitutional military for generations now!


Jersey McJones said...

Oh - sorry - Jack, that last comment was for you.

Oh, and also...

All you vets! Thanks guys! It's almost ten o'clock and I almost completely forgot that!

That's because you all are a lot of fun to debate with. Crazy ol' Americans like me always appreciate you guys, much more than you will probably ever think. But that's okay. You fight for us anyway. We fight for you too.


Silverfiddle said...

Yeah Jersey, we're all on the same team at the end of the day.

God bless...

Most Rev. Gregori said...

Sooner or later, one just has to cut moochers loose to shift for themselves. This is true for those on welfare as it is for those in foreign countries who live off the largess of the American tax payers. When individuals or nations show no inclination to build themselves up and become self-sufficient, then the perhaps the kindest action of all is to turn off the money spigot.

If people didn't like to have their women treated like cattle and genitally mutilated, if they did not want their gays executed, their thieves having hands chopped off, etc.,they would stop it.

Maggie@MaggiesNotebook said...

Silver, this is a very powerful post. I sadly agree that we cannot and will not prevail in Islamic countries because our government isn't willing to do what the troops can do to really free the people. So, let's bring them home and let us never go to their aid again. There is no freedom in it.

MathewK said...

One difference between you and batman is that while batman catches the scum and locks them away, only to have them break out and start the dance all over again; you folks catch the scum, shoot them in the face and toss their corpse in the sea.

That way you don't have to do the same dance with the same scumbag again and again.

"Our military has served with honor, and the nation is grateful"

So are those of us not among you, but i see where you are coming from and in a way i think it would do the world a bit of good to have America share some of the heavy lifting. Plenty of ungrateful rats in need of a good lesson out there.

Finntann said...

I have to respectfully dispute Jersey's definition of empire, were we imperial, we'd probably be a lot better off.

A base in a foreign country does not make it an occupying power, really now? Do you think we are going to project military force against the UK or Germany from Lakenheath or Ramstein?

It is not the US military overseas that makes us an empire, in fact the greatest risk of us becoming an empire is here at home. We were created as a Republic, the consolidation and centralization of the majority of power in the federal government is what puts us at risk of imperialism.

Anonymous said...

I for one am sick of giving so much for people who turn around and spit in our faces. That being said, I'm grateful for everyone who has made the sacrifice of service.

Anonymous said...

I don't judge someone's arguments based on their style entirely, but it helps to judge their clarity of thought and command of the material. Content and style go together.

I don't have a personal preference for style as long as it is intelligent and thought provoking. Even an acerbic rant can be intelligent and thought provoking, you just have to present it correctly or your message will be lost.

Silverfiddle said...

Jack and Jersey: I agree with Jack, and Jersey misunderstood me... Again!

As you all know, I don't scold people for how they express themselves here. I am a free speech libertarian.

My point about the loony lefties who were shouting about this years ago is that their tone and appearance and over-the-top provocations drove people away and completely ruined their message.

Who are you more inclined to listen to, Jersey? Someone screaming at you or someone politely addressing you?

That's my point.

Anonymous said...

I think in this instance it's not the style that counts, it's whichever content you agree with more. Jersey likely thinks that the over-the-top liberals are right on target, even though an objective eye would say they've gone off the deep-end. The same could be said for the conservative side.

So I suppose Jersey is right in a way, that style doesn't really matter to people who have already permanently made up their minds.

But as for people like me, for whom permanently making up one's mind is intellectual death, style does matter an awful lot.