Monthly Archives: August 2013

Pentagon Owes Veterans an Explanation!

Extremist revolutionary  general George Washington

Extremist revolutionary general George Washington

Recently the Pentagon released a training document labeling certain people as extremists, allegedly to inform Soldiers on the changing face of extremist groups. But, the people who are lumped into this new category may surprise you. The  Pentagon owes its veterans an explanation.

 

Judicial Watch, the conservative watchdog organization, obtained the document published by the Defense Equal Opportunity Management Office through a FOIA request. Within the 133-page training document is a training document warning Soldiers of individuals who may be members of extremist organizations.

The DOD document warns, that many extremists will talk of individual liberties, states’ rights and how to make the world a better place.”

 

In a section entitled “Extremist Ideologies”, the training document explains, “In U.S. history, there are many examples of extremist ideologies and movements. The colonists who sought to free themselves from British rule and the Confederate states who sought to secede from the Northern states are just two examples.”

 

Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton making comments to Fox News said he was “disturbed” by what he read in the document.

 

“It’s disturbing insight into what’s happening inside Obama’s Pentagon,” Fitton said. “The Obama administration has a nasty habit of equating basic conservative values with terrorism.”

 

Later in the interview, Fitton said, “It’s craziness! It’s political correctness run amok.” Fitton’s comments are included in a great article from Todd Starnes appearing this week in Townhall.com. Read the full article here.

 

With language like this, veterans may well raise an eyebrow, or express outright disgust, especially after serving their country and declaring their oath to the Founding Document, the Constitution.

 

“Nowadays, instead of dressing in sheets or publically espousing hate messages, many extremists will talk of individual liberties, states’ rights and how to make the world a better place.”

 

That right there is a definition of the Soldier’s duty here in the U.S., or so we thought.

One has to wonder why such a document ever saw the light of day; until one finds that it relied heavily in wording and sourcing from the Southern Poverty Law Center, a leftist organization with connections to the White House.

Veterans and Soldiers, Airmen and Marines, are forbidden by the UCMJ to comment or question their civilian leadership, and yet their leadership constantly manipulate the services for their own purposes. This is not the first time the DOD has been in trouble for labeling Christians and Conservatives as extremists to be watched. An e-mail to Soldiers from a Lieutenant Colonel at Fort Cambell Kentucky warned the Soldiers of so-called hate groups like the Family Research Council and the American Family Association, organizations the SPLC has targeted as domestic hate groups in the past. The e-mail was intercepted by Fox News last April.

 

In the e-mail, the unnamed colonel writes, “When we see behaviors that are inconsistent with Army Values – don’t just walk by – do the right thing and address the concern before it becomes a problem.”

 

If the colonel had been writing about sexual harassment or assault of women in uniform, or the harassment and hazing of minorities, I would have to agree. But in the intentional labeling of Founding Fathers such as Thomas Jefferson, John Adams and George Washington as “extremists” I would have to say, with all do respect to the colonel, “take a giant leap, Sir!”

 

The Pentagon really owes an explanation to their servicemembers and veterans of foreign wars. As a DOD trained public affairs operative myself, I have this advice for the Pentagon that I offer for free. You need to distance yourself from these documents and offer an explanation and apology to your core audience. It needs to be sincere and it needs to be in person. I recommend a high-ranking subject matter expert, like a JAG officer of the colonel rank or higher, personally addressing a veterans group such as the Veterans of Foreign Wars or the American Legion. He needs to explain that those incidents and documents do not represent DOD policy and are isolated incidents not properly vetted by command. He or she needs to assure the veterans that such documents will not be published again and they need to explain the Pentagon holds the Founders and the Founding Documents in the highest esteem, respecting the sacrifice of the nation’s veterans who fought, bled and died for the principles that they inculcate.

 

If Conservatives Want to Restore America, Stop Allowing the GOP to Compromise The Constitution and America to the Democrats!

 

 

 GOP Ass Kiss

 

Republicans voters keep wallowing in chaos while repeating mistakes that put America on the road to progressivism: Compromise to the Left for fear of alienating the Left.

Conservatives keep voting for candidates the GOP insists will beat Democrat candidates, and the GOP continues losing to the Democrats!

That makes us conservatives just as guilty as the GOP Machine we’ve allowed to dupe us twice, into voting for two men conservatives did not want: John McCain in 2008 and Mitt Romney in 2012.

McCain up GOP Ass

Basically, the GOP Machine is telling conservatives that paying a Democrat hooker for sex is no different than taking your conservative Tea Party girlfriend out to dinner: “Hey, you paid for the tab!” Yes, but the piece of meat in Blue spandex is not Red Prime Rib! And you don’t pay your girlfriend for sex unless she’s a money-grubbing mistress your wife has a right to stick a fork in!

Good grief! Have we conservatives learned nothing? Maybe, because the GOP keeps pimping out votes and we conservatives keep “hooking” ourselves to the political prostitution.

Our founders must be looking down on America and thinking: “Why did we sign the Constitution if these idiots are so desperate to return their rights to kings?”

I know one thing: If Andrew Jackson were alive today, he would shoot the Democrat Party, run the Republicans through, and join the Tea Party!

The Founders, like today’s leaders, fought endlessly and nonsensically over bills on the House floor (to the point that Andrew Jackson demanded if leaders could not give an up or down vote they should duel each other), but one thing they never compromised on was framing the United States Constitution.

Many readers will insist the founders indeed compromised before signing the document. Yes, they debated how to frame a document providing The Rights of Man. They revised constantly so as not to leave out any God-given liberties, but they never compromised those liberties. That’s what modern-day Washington leaders and kings do.

The Constitution is not a compromise, it is in fact a provision of evidence upholding the laws of liberties that exist from mankind’s creation.

The Framers did not formulate what we see inside the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, God created those liberties—Natures Laws.

Federalist and Anti-Federalist were in one accordance: The Laws of Nature are laws no man or government has rights to trample, that these God-given liberties, given unto us at creation, must be upheld, promoted and provided for, sustained and protected by a limited government reined in by the people.

That’s not compromising, negotiating, or meeting halfway, as leaders of the modern-day GOP do when coping with Democrats for settlements designed only to gain votes for life-termed power versus promoting the American Experiment and individualism that made this country great. The framing and signing the Constitution was a coming together as one people to buttress the foundations of liberty on paper so all would see their rights are God-given, not government provided.

Why is that difficult for conservatives to hold onto and believe in? Are we afraid of taking care of ourselves, of making our own money we spend and save as we individually choose? Are we afraid to control of an out of control monster called government?

Furthermore, when it came to separate parties, the Founders did not believe both parties should work together. Today’s dysfunctional leadership has become one incestuous family party.

Unfortunately John Beohner and Harry Reid came together to breed Nancy Pelosi’s Flying Monkeys.  

The Founders fought each other rabidly. They did not get along or live peacefully together. They bickered, debated policies and philosophies, and tried to undermine one another, with Andrew Jackson going so far as to challenge fellow leaders to duels.

The fighting by anti-Federalists was the refusal to break the Constitution’s laws.

Here is an example of refusal to trample the Constitution: The anti-Federalists considered the President’s annual address to Congress a parliamentary act of the King of England and wanted the address abolished abolished.

Next: Congress decided to fashion and hold annual addresses! Andrew Jackson, in righteous indignation, stood up in the House of Congress, demanding both actions cease. Jackson told President Washington and Congress they were not communicating the British wrongs perpetrated against America—hijacking American ships. Washington had disregarded addressing Britain’s actions toward America trading on the high seas. Jackson insisted President Washington was acting like the British king. Thomas Jefferson and Congress sided with Jackson’s demands to abolish the annual address. Republicans agreed with the Democrat Jackson: America must never revert backward! Congress took a vote and ended the Presidential Annual Address to Congress. It would not be heard again until the Progressive Woodrow Wilson enacted it back into law.[1]

If only Modern-day GOP leaders would make uncompromising demands and stop acting like the House of Lords!

More often than not Republicans surrender and agree to whatever terms Democrats demand so the GOP won’t look bad in the eyes of the people they desperately want voting Republican. That compromise has destroyed the Republican Party and given Democrats the upper hand in pushing the country into socialism.

GOP Elephant Beaten

Compromise has made America lose her way on a progressive path leading to destruction.

Parties’ working together as one disbands competition and disallows each party to branch out individual ideas.

Compromise creates one big government party that overreaches its power into the states and thrusts tyranny upon the people.

It is one thing to work together to create a free country based on liberty for all and another to sell out the people’s independence for political power and control over individuals.

It is one thing for leaders to work together to trade America’s manufactured goods for prosperity and quite another to sell out American manufacturing to enemies profiting off America’s economic decline.

It is one thing for the GOP to work together with the Tea Party to tear down the progressive ideologies of the Democrat Party (as they should be doing versus trashing conservatives) and entirely another to sell out traditional conservative values for Democrat votes.

Compromise is what people are forced to do under monarchy. Is that any different than two parties working together as one? No, that simply creates a large aristocracy of government elites controlling the amount of liberty the people are allowed.

If we conservatives continue compromising to whatever the GOP tells us and we vote for whomever the GOP tells us to vote for in the 2014 and 2016 elections, its our fault if America goes down.

Sometimes I wonder why we outlawed dueling!

 

[1] H. W. Brands, Andrew Jackson: His Life and Times (New York: Doubleday, 2005), 80.

George W. Bush commemorates the 50th Anniversary of MLK’s March on Washington

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Office of George W. Bush

Dallas, Texas
August 28, 2013

STATEMENT BY PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH

Laura and I are proud to join our fellow Americans in commemorating the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington and Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I Have A Dream” speech.

When Reverend King came to Washington, D.C., in the summer of 1963, his purpose was to hold our Nation to the standards spelled out in the Declaration of Independence. He called all of us to live up to that document’s fundamental promise and the underpinning of our founding – that all of us are created equal and endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable rights. From the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, with thousands gathered around him, Dr. King looked out over the American capital and uttered simple, powerful words that changed the hearts of millions. The dream he had spread a message of hope, justice, and brotherhood that took hold in the hearts of men and women around the world.

Our country has come a long way since that bright afternoon 50 years ago; yet our journey to justice is not complete. Just to the East of the Lincoln Memorial, where President Obama will speak on Wednesday, stands the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial. There on the National Mall our President, whose story reflects the promise of America, will help us honor the man who inspired millions to redeem that promise.

Dr. King was on this Earth just 39 years, but the ideals that guided his life of conscience and purpose are eternal. Honoring him requires the commitment of every one of us. There’s still a need for every American to help hasten the day when Dr. King’s vision is made real in every community – when what truly matters is not the color of a person’s skin, but the content of their character.

Laura and I thank the King family and all who work to carry on the legacy of a great man and the promise of a great Nation. May we continue to march toward the day when the dignity and humanity of every person is respected. And may God continue to bless America.

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Wikipedia

America Our Way with Dustin Hoyt – August 28th

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When: Wednesday, August 28th, 10pm Eastern/7pm Pacific

Where: America Our Way with Dustin Hoyt on Blog Talk Radio

What: Dustin Hoyt takes on the biggest issues of the day, advocating for smaller government, liberty, common sense, and honest politicians. His insight and witty commentary provide entertaining and provoking angles on everything from fiscal policy to the most sensational statements. With a twist of Libertarianism and Conservativism that blends well to all who support the tea party and true American values. This show taps into all the things patriotic Americans love and need to hear in the battle against the left and the expansive government we fight against.

Listen to internet radio with CDNews Radio on BlogTalkRadio

The Case for Liberty and an Article V Convention – Part III

Parts I and II of this US Constitution - We The Peopleseries briefly described what an Article V Convention is, and some compelling reasons for the States to call for one. This missive will propose ideas for numerous amendments to our Constitution, the purpose of which is to restore the principles embodied in the document when it was first ratified.

Founding Principles

The United States of America was intended to be a land where the principles of liberty and justice for all were paramount. What is meant by liberty? Merriam-Webster defines liberty as:

1 : the quality or state of being free:
a : the power to do as one pleases
b : freedom from physical restraint
c : freedom from arbitrary or despotic control
d : the positive enjoyment of various social, political, or economic rights and privileges

The right of ownership of one’s labor and property is implied in the concept of liberty, as is the concept of personal responsibility. When labor and property are confiscated at the point of a gun, whether by burglar, tax collector, or slave owner, liberty ceases to exist. When it is possible for one group of people to take by force, the fruits of the labor of another simply because the first group says they need it, or an intermediary says so on their behalf, we have returned to indentured servitude. It matters not how well-meaning the intermediary may be. Neither should the intermediary be able to use the threat of confiscation of property or labor to manipulate behavior, yet the current mishmash of federal tax code does just that. Neither Congress nor the Administration will ever voluntarily give up the power to control via the tax code. Yet ultimately, it is the power of the purse that allows the people to control the government, or the government to control the people.

Taxation and Spending

Ultimate control is why the US Constitution gave the power of the purse to “The Peoples House”, the House of Representatives, rather than the house of the States’ Representatives, the Senate.

An additional protection against a tyrannical government was in the area of taxation. Prior to ratification of the 16th Amendment in 1913, any tax on income had to be of the flat-tax variety, apportioned equally among the states, thereby preventing redistribution and manipulation.

Ideally Federal revenues would be voluntary, giving the people the direct power of the purse. Voluntary contribution, however, would lend itself to abuse by allowing the wealthy to manipulate the government. The closest the country could hope to get to an all voluntary tax would be a tax on consumption, or something akin to the “Fair Tax”.

Consider the following Amendments;

  • Repeal the 16th Amendment.
  • Congress shall not levy any tax on income or property, regardless how derived, nor shall congress impose any tax on estates greater than 5%. Congress may levy a tax on sales, the total of which shall not exceed 15% of the national economy. Such sales tax must be uniform across all products and services except that food necessary for living be exempt. Also the first $500.00 (indexed for inflation) of any single purchase of clothing be exempt, the first $250,000.00 (indexed for inflation) of the purchase of a primary residence or the first $1,500.00 (indexed for inflation) of monthly rent on a primary residence shall be exempt.
  • An amendment requiring a balanced budget. The text of S. J. Resolution 10 from the 112th Congress would do as it requires super majorities in both houses to raise taxes or borrow money and limits expenditures to 18% of GDP.

 

Representation

The original intent for Congress was that one house, The House of Representatives, should represent the people while the other house, The Senate, should be the voice of the State Legislatures. That system worked well for 100 years. It was thought, correctly as it turns out, that for the States to retain their power and sovereignty, their legislatures had to be represented directly in the Federal Government. If not, the Federal System would encroach on the States’ rights and eventually overwhelm them. To safeguard the States, the Constitution required Senators to be elected by the legislatures in each of the several States, thereby dividing power between the State Houses and the people.

To insure the people were properly represented, each member of the House of Representatives was to represent no more than 30,000 voters. By limiting the number of voters a congress person could represent, it was thought that people would have adequate access to their representatives and would be better represented. Today one congress person represents roughly 700,000 people. Is it any wonder they spend all their time chasing campaign contributions?

The campaign season has also extended to the point where it is continual. Politicians who have been in office for decades have built up massive war chests of campaign cash and have entrenched themselves with constituent service to the point where they are very difficult to defeat. Our politicians were meant to be public servants for a limited period of time, and then return to private life.

Consider these possibilities to correct some of the problems;

  • Repeal the 17th Amendment.
  • Limit the terms of Congressional Representatives to four terms for House members and two terms for Senators. Additionally, House members who become Senators, may serve only one term in the Senate.
  • Extend truth in advertising, libel, and slander laws to campaign advertising and speeches outside of congressional sessions.
  • Re-apportion congressional districts and extend the House of Representatives to 870 seats.
  • Except as expressly provided for in the Constitution, Congress shall pass no law which exempts members of Congress or any of their staff from any law.

 
Executive Branch Overreach

Increasingly, the administrative departments of the Executive Branch have been putting in place rules and regulations that have the force of law. The bureaucrats making the rules were not elected nor have they been accountable to anyone, other than the President.

Congress has abdicated its responsibility to legislate, happily passing on this function to the aforementioned agencies. Often these rules have adversely affected large segments of the population, yet the people have been powerless to stop them.

Congress has also abdicated its responsibility with regard to military action. The Constitution grants Congress the power to declare war, not the President. Even the War Powers Act, which many believe to be unconstitutional, requires the President to seek advise and consent from Congress within sixty days of beginning hostilities, yet two years later bombs are continuing to drop in Yemen. The President has yet to seek approval from Congress for that action.

Possible amendments to return power to its rightful place might be;

  • No rule or regulation issued by any Federal Agency and having the force of law shall take effect unless it has been approved by both houses of Congress by up or down vote.
  • Congress shall have the power to repeal any rule or regulation put in place by the Administrative branch by up or down vote in both houses.
  • Excepting the event of a direct attack on the United States or its territories, the President shall not initiate any military action without a Declaration of War, or Letters of Marque and Reprisal issued by Congress. In the event of direct attack, the President must seek and receive such declaration or cease hostilities within ninety days. No funds from the US Treasury shall be used to conduct military operations past ninety days if no declaration or letters exist.

 
Obama Care and the Commerce Clause

The original intent of the Commerce Clause in the Constitution was to make commerce regular between the States, that is, to prevent one State from charging tariffs or duties on the goods of another. Yet this clause has been used repeatedly to justify whittling away at States’ rights. The most glaring case has been The Affordable Care Act. Justice Roberts had to, in effect, re-write the law; calling a penalty a tax to avoid the abuse.

Here is a suggested amendment to end Obama Care;

  • Congress shall pass no law requiring any citizen or entity to purchase any commercial product or service, and any such law in existence at the time of this amendment’s ratification shall become null and void within six months after ratification.

The Supreme Court

Often the Court has taken it upon itself to ignore the original intent of the framers of the Constitution when making its decisions, thereby creating new law where none exists. This has almost always been done by a five to four vote. Matters of such weight should require substantial unanimity among the members of the court.

Therefore consider these amendments;

  • The Supreme court shall consist of twelve members, appointed by the President and ratified by the Senate.
  • Supreme Court members cannot be removed from office except by impeachment for high crimes and misdemeanors.
  • Court members terms shall be limited to fifteen years.
  • All constitutional decisions by the Supreme Court shall require at least a two-thirds majority.

 
States Rights

Prior to the Civil War, the United States was a collection of sovereign States who agreed under the Constitution to do together what could more easily be done collectively. The Constitution was clear in Article I Section 8 what the powers of the Federal Government were to be. All else was left to the States. This intent was emphasized in the 10th Amendment.

Through federal mandates on everything from light bulbs to toilets to school curriculum and lunch requirements, from healthcare to voting to immigration enforcement, the US government has been usurping State sovereignty and dictating policy.

Consider these amendments to return power to the States;

  • The Federal Government must enforce immigration and naturalization law. If the Federal Government fails or refuses to enforce said law, the States have the right to enforce the law in lieu of the Federal Government, and to pass the necessary State laws to carry out said enforcement.
  • The States may require such reasonable proof of citizenship as they deem necessary in order to vote.
  • Any State has the right to peaceably secede from the union upon passage of a resolution by three-fourths vote of the State legislatures, signature of the respective Governor, and ratification by three-fifths vote of the people of the State.
  • No funds shall be used from the Federal Treasury to mandate State behavior as a condition for receipt of said funds.

 
Religious Freedom

Freedom of religion was never meant to be freedom from religion. In fact the First Amendment specifically states that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof ;”. Yet the court system has prohibited the free exercise of religion in many circumstances and locations, and has all but established Atheism as the National Religion.

The following changes to the First Amendment are offered for consideration;

  • Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof, regardless of venue, and including the display of religious symbols in the public square and on Federal Property; or abridging the freedom of speech including politically incorrect speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

 
Conclusion

The forgoing suggestions are offered for the reader’s consideration. What is important are the ideas expressed. There may well be other amendments worthy of inclusion, and the wording and inclusion of those offered in this article are certainly open for discussion and debate.

The purpose of an Article V Convention, after all, is to debate ideas in order to mold our founding document into a basis of government that works for all of the States in the Union, and their citizens. To do nothing in the current climate is to continue down the road to Totalitarianism at warp speed.

The next installment in this series will discuss the necessity of great diligence in choosing the delegates to an Article V Convention and suggest some possible conferees.

The Confederate Corner with George Neat August 27th – Patriotism, the Professor and Putin

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When: Tuesday, August 27th, 10pm Eastern/7pm Pacific

Where: Confederate Corner with George Neat on Blog Talk Radio

What: Yes there are Confederates north of the Mason-Dixon line, and George Neat is one of them. And we’re happy to bring his views to you in the “Confederate Corner” radio show.

For more information on George and his political views, please drop by the Confederate Corner at GoldwaterGal.com. (http://goldwatergal.com/goldwater-gal-media/confederate-corner/)

Tonight: George will be talking about ObamaCare, Patriotism, a VA Tech Professor, and Obama vs Putin. Of course there will also be a Soldier Salute, Music Moment, and a “nearly-infamous” Crack Pipe Moment.

Listen to internet radio with CDNews Radio on BlogTalkRadio

Obama Is Proof That Any Tom Dick Or Harry Can Be President

Once again, Obama is on the campaign trail, traveling the country putting down the Republicans for wanting to defund Obama-Care. As I sat there trying not to puke, I said to myself, “How can anyone in this country still believe a word this guy says?” I just don’t get it, Obama has lied about practically everything that comes out of his mouth. There are people that say he is disingenuous or they say he is not telling the exact truth, let’s call a spade a spade, Obama is a liar, plain and simple.

Nancy Pelosi famously said that we had to pass Obama-Care so we could find out what was in it, well now that we are finding out what is in it, we are finding out everything that Obama told us about the bill was a lie. We can keep our doctors, we can keep our same health-care plan, premiums would go down, everyone would be covered, it would add nothing to the deficit, it will create millions of jobs, and the quality of health care will improve. Yes Nancy Pelosi, we are starting to find out what is in it, and it is all lies.

However, can we blame Obama for the lies? After all he did not read the bill either, he was only telling the American people what he was told to tell them, what he was reading off his teleprompter. Let’s face it, Obama is no leader, every time there is a big job to do he just passes it off to someone else. Look at   the $787 billion stimulus package it was largely written by members of the Appropriations committees, with concessions made to the three Republicans whose votes were needed in the Senate. Health care bills were being fleshed out by Chairman Max Baucus and ranking Republican Charles E. Grassley in the Senate Finance Committee, and by Democratic committee chairmen in the House. The administration has proposed cap-and-trade legislation to limit carbon dioxide emissions, but the sole working draft made public has come from House committee chairmen Henry A. Waxman and Edward J. Markey.

How can we forget every time Obama presented his own budget, it received ZERO votes, his own party said it was a joke. So, how can Obama be called an effective President, how can people in this country still support him? It beats the hell out of me.

This much I do know, if Obama can be President, any Tom, Dick, or Harry can be President, even my aunt Tilly form Jersey City could be president, as long as they have the right protection. The only thing that keeps Obama standing is the fact that he has people around him that are willing to protect him, let us not forget the press has been on his side from day one. One of the jobs of the press is to keep a watchful eye on Government, to warn the people when Government is corrupt and doing things that would hurt the people, alas, the media has failed the American people.

Let’s face it, after a President like Obama it is clear anyone can be President of the United States, you don’t have to have brains, just the ability to read a teleprompter. Let us not forget that you must also be willing to lie to the American people. Well let’s not call it a lie, because if you are told to say something that is not true, how can it be a lie if you didn’t know it was, plus it doesn’t hurt to have media people getting a thrill up their leg whenever you speak either.

“What Kind Of  Society Are We Leaving Our Kids” Available Here.

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This is one man’s opinion.

Their Finest Hour with Allan Bourdius – August 26th

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When: Monday, August 26th, 10pm Eastern/7pm Pacific

Where: Their Finest Hour with Allan Bourdius

What: Those who don’t know history are doomed to repeat it – or to not repeat the parts that should be. We’re in a solemn hour in the cause of freedom, and yes, we’re only ever one generation away from losing it. Allan Bourdius of the Their Finest Hour blog (theirfinesthour.blogspot.com) brings his conservative/libertarian fusion (“conservatarian”) perspective to the events of the day and contextualizes them with facts and history to arm the forces of liberty to better our communities and our society, open eyes, and win converts – so that one day our children, still with freedom intact, can look back and say of us, their parents: “This was their finest hour.”

Tonight: Allan will be talking live from the road. He was in Washington, DC at the Medal of Honor presentation ceremony for Ty Carter. Sequestration might be keeping the public out of the White House, but Allan ended up there today! One thing is for certain – you don’t want to miss tonight’s show!

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Engaging Young Voters on Defense Issues

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A study released recently by the national leaders of Young Republicans (YRNC) polled young voters on numerous issues, including defense and foreign policy. The study reports that only 17% of youngsters believe that protecting the country should be the government’s top priority; that defense is “the place to start” budget cuts; that 35% of young voters, including 45% of young independents, believe defense spending should be cut [further]; and that in general, many if not most young voters want to reduce the size and budget of the military, withdraw it from foreign countries, and entrench America behind the oceans.

Why do so many youngsters hold such mistaken views? I believe this is due to confusion, as well as Republicans’ failure to clear up that confusion and explain why America needs to stop cutting its defense budget, retain the military at no less than its current size, and generally remain involved in the world.

This article aims to explain these issues and clear up the confusion. If you are a young voter, please give me 10 minutes of your time to explain.

Firstly, why shouldn’t the US cut its defense budget further?

Because, quite simply, significant cuts would seriously weaken the US military. There are many building bricks of military strength: brave troops, good training, competent leaders, world-class equipment, force size, a steady supply of ammunition and other provisions – but other than bravery, none of this is possible to have without sufficient funding. Without an adequate budget, the military will be very weak.

An army marches on its stomach, as Napoleon said – or more precisely, on its budget. To have an adequately-sized military, quality training and care for the troops, decent base and housing infrastructure, a sufficient supply of goods, and world-class weapons in sufficient quantities, you need adequate funding.

The military is not too big; if anything, it’s too small. The Navy, with the smallest ship fleet since 1915, is able to meet only 59% of Combatant Commanders’ needs for ships; the Air Force is strained beyond hope, flying its smallest and oldest aircraft fleet (average age: over 24 years, meaning the USAF’s aircraft, on average, were produced before you were born; they’re older than the pilots flying them). The Marines are on track to shrink to 182,100 men – but if sequestration sticks, they’ll have only 145,000 – not enough for even one major operation per the USMC’s Commandnant. The military is a shadow of its former self; in the Reagan years, it ahd over 2.6 million personnel and the Navy had 600 ships.

Some question why the US spends as much as it does compared to other countries.

But in all non-Western countries, one dollar can buy several times as much as it can in the US. And in countries like China, central governments pay only for capital military expenditures like weapons development and acquisition, while basing and personnel costs are borne mostly by regional governments. Thus, China’s military budget (up to $215 bn according to the DOD) is actually worth several times that amount. In Russia, the Defense Ministry gets much of its property as “free goods” from other ministries.

Moreover, total US military spending, including Afghan war costs, are only 4.1% of America’s GDP, the lowest share of GDP going to defense since 1948 (excluding the late Clinton years). That was a time of total military demobilization. Speaking of which, history shows that everytime the US has deeply cut its military’s size and budget, it later had to rebuild the military at a high cost when a new adversary perpetrated, or threatened, aggression – after both World Wars, Korea, Vietnam, and the Cold War.

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Moreover, the US has a much larger economy (the world’s largest) and the 3rd largest population, so its natural that its military budget, in raw dollars, would be larger than those of other countries. Proportionally to its economy and population ($1,990 per capita, compared to almost $2,500 per capita during the Reagan years), the defense spending burden is quite low – especially by historical standards.

Many young voters are certainly frustrated with the waste in defense (and nondefense) spending. Believe me, so am I. That is why I’ve written, over the years, the largest DOD reform proposals package ever devised by anyone. But there isn’t enough waste in the DOD budget to pay for the budget cuts being contemplated by many young citizens – or those scheduled under current law. Because, you see, under the Budget Control Act of 2011, defense spending is on course to be cut by $1 trillion over the next decade (through FY2022, $550 bn of that under a mechanism called sequestration – which, making matters worse, doesn’t distinguish between legitimate defense priorities and waste, and instead requires cuts across the entire defense budget by 10%, in missile defense as much as in DOD bureaucrats. The DOD has zero legal flexibility to distribute those cuts.

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Before the sequester, the BCA had already mandated $487 bn in defense budget cuts; before that, Secretary Gates cut $178 bn in “efficiencies”; and before that, he had already killed over 50 weapon programs, including the F-22 fighter, the CG-X cruiser, and the Airborne Laser. Defense spending, in short, has already been subjected to deep, excessive cuts during President Obama’s tenure – while nondefense spending had not, prior to sequestration, faced any cuts (and even under sequestration, nondefense spending cuts will be shallow). And a full 60% of sequestration’s cuts are from defense.

Moreover, you could eliminate military spending entirely, and there still would be huge budget deficits for perpetuity. So defense spending is the wrong place to look for further cuts. It’s time for entitlements – which are exempt from sequestration – to face reductions now.

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Furthermore – and most importantly – defense is the most important function of the federal government, indeed its highest Constitutional duty, as made clear by the Constitution’s Preamble and Sec. 4 of Art. IV, and by the fact that half of all enumerated powers of Congress listed in Sec. 8 of Art. I of the Constitution pertain to military matters. Defense is therefore far more important than, say, farm aid or mass transit. And that is what the Founding Fathers believed.

George Washington told Congress in 1790 that “Among the many interesting objects which will engage your attention, that of providing for the common defense will merit particular regard. (…) To be prepared for war is one of the effective means of preserving the peace.” John Adams said wisely that “National defense is one of the cardinal duties of a statesman.” James Madison asked in one of the Federalist Papers: “How could readiness for war in times of peace be safely prohibited, unless we could prohibit, in like manner, the preparations and establishments of every hostile nation?”

Some will say, “But the US should do less around the world. It should be less interventionist.”

But less is not better. More is not better, either. Only better is better.

The US, of course, shouldn’t make every conflict around the world, and every nation’s governance or security problems, its own. But in crucial parts of the world, the US needs to intervene when (and only when) its interests or its key allies are threatened. Who rules in Bosnia, Zambia, or Lesotho is irrelevant to US interests.

But when North Korea tests nuclear weapons and missiles and threatens US allies and Guam; when China bullies and threatens countries across East Asia; when Russia flies bombers close to US airspace practicing attacks on the US; when Israel’s security is threatened, the US cannot stand by; it must do something. The key is to determine what constitutes an American national interest and thus when and where to intervene, if at all; I’ve attempted to do so here. Also, if and when the US intervenes, it needs to achieve victory quickly and then go home. Prolonged wars don’t serve the national interest.

You may ask, “What about Iraq and Afghanistan, then?” I believe the invasion of Iraq and the nationbuilding campaign in Afghanistan were big mistakes. The US, like other countries, sometimes makes them. But it’s crucial not to shift to the other extreme of the position spectrum and oppose any overseas interventions completely. The right path lies in the middle; the US should sometimes intervene, but only in defense of its vital interests and allies. Historically, that has been the policy of Republican Presidents such as… Ronald Reagan and his Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger. The latter officially enshrined this policy as the Weinberger Doctrine.

Dear Young Reader, if you’ve read all of this to the end, I want to thank you – even if you don’t agree with me completely, or even in 50%. The US military needs the engagement and support of every US citizen – especially young citizens, who are the future and the hope of any nation and its armed forces.