Wednesday, August 03, 2005

A GRIM EDITORIAL

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By Elaine Meinel Supkis

This site's motto is "It's their war, why aren't they fighting it?" This is the question from beginning to end. The photo I am posting answers it: they don't want to get hurt. Look at the fearful feelings of the bereaved in today's news. The Young Republicans and their right wing ilk don't want to look at these pictures and so they are "USA, USA" flag wavers while wavering about serving like true patriots.

The blog is dedicated to shoving this war in their faces and forcing them to face reality and do their duty or join us in fighting the war mongers who brought us this disaster.
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This kid here is dead. He was blown up yesterday. Two days ago, on his off hours, he probably played video games and listened to pop music and messed around with his buddies. Laughing and joking.

Today, a box is inexorably heading home to his family. His body isn't going to be viewed, either. It is all in pieces, burned. I cannot imagine the pain his poor mother is going to feel. She just learned about this a few hours ago, all hope fleeing from her world until the day she dies, too.

The right wing youth supporting this war but hanging out at home, like Bush and Cheney did during Nam, do so because they want to live and be happy. Do whatever they want, irresponsibly. Like Bush and Cheney, the faces of pain mean nothing at all to them.

We can't shame them because they are literally shameless. Like Rush yapping about f, snark and irony is lost on these characters. We can mock them but they mock our nation. And in the end, the real question is, who is the real patiots here?

They point to their flags and their salutes and shouts of "USA" and pretend this sets them apart from us.

So what are WE?

This, only each reader here can answer. If people are coming to this blog looking only for entertainment, well, this ain't Disneyland. Or the Never neverland Ranch, either. It ain't even the Vatican.

It is merely a blog run by volunteers who give their time and effort to spread the word and maybe, just maybe, make someone change their mind.

We ask for and would like any submissions for this blog. I have my own blogs to run and can't write up all the stuff that comes here, nor should the effort fall to any one individual. So please feel free to contact me at emeinel@taconic.net if you have anything written up you want to see posted here.

Thanks in advance. Elaine

36 Comments:

At 04 August, 2005 00:43, Blogger MJS said...

Good luck to you and yours. When JC Christian began this campaign it was my heartfelt and snark-free wish that the "chickenhawk" phenomenon would end, that no more could a warmonger escape the responsibility of putting his or her body where his or her mouth is. The amount of disconnect that continues in young conservatives is not unexpected, but it is noted by many and it will be (hopefully) a remembered when more Americans suggest that those who would beat the war drums should also go and fight that war.

I happen to love snark (doh!) but August, 2005 is upon us, and the dead lay in tatters in the sands of Iraq: jokes are of no comfort. What's next is more like what used to be the province of our monotheistic religions: shame. Shame on us for bloodlust, shame on us for not understanding how far our country, our corporate society, and our dominionist/rapture citizens want us to fall. Liberals don't cackle with glee as soldiers die. Liberals don't point to war veterans and call them pukes. Liberals don't betray covert operatives for partisan paybacks. But liberals need to feel like giving a shit still matters, that one can, as Master Samwise suggested in a fairy tale, that there are good things worth fighting for in this world, and so fight for them we must.

+++

 
At 04 August, 2005 01:49, Anonymous stinkeye said...

Recently while in the company of friends with like minds and of similar vintage, Mr.S. started showing his age.

He started with the loathsome words that can send anyone running for the hills, "When we were young...". He pointed to the dirth of moral outrage, the outrage that so defined our generation. He was pissed that we weren't seeing the war played out on TV during our evening meals as we did back then.
Before he could really get wound up I shushed him.

I said that Iraq is much much more like Vietnam than he remembers. The talking heads and all of us here can point out the polysci similarities of the two wars but I was more interested in his remark about a televised war. I pointed out that although he remembers Tom Brokaw or Dan Rather or Walter Cronkite coming into our livingrooms from Viet rice paddies, we were, in fact, watching a war in its fourth or fifth year.

By the time that we were seeing photographs of naked children torched by napalm running from the very flames that engulfed them, the war had already cost many many thousands of American lives. I don't think the tally has ever been calculated of civilian women and children and elderly.

The collectively overwhelming and damning footage of Vietnam was what ignited the moral outrage of most of the country. Parents no longer thought that the problem was what their hippie kid was smoking, it was seeing the image of the kid next door who was never coming home again. But even as Middle America roused itself from of its mid 60's psychotropic coma and then took to the streets, the war was in its seventh or eighth year.


Our moral outrage MUST be ignited before we see many more photos like the one above. Print that photo. Put it on a sign. Rub it in the face of the next snot who's smoking a cigar, telling you where he and the little family went on vacation and then asks you, "hey, we haven't had another terrorist attack have we?" Put that photo on 20 t-shirts that you then give away to friends.

MJS speaks of shame. That is what we all deserve and should live with for the rest of our pitiful lives if we don't infect everyone we know with MORAL OUTRAGE. I'm a carrier and there is no cure.
`

 
At 04 August, 2005 05:03, Blogger Karl said...

Thank you, Elaine.

This is a useful element of the topic, concerning those strong supporters of U.S. military intervention who are themselves too old to serve:

What about your circle of influence, the people you know? Are you encouraging them to consider serving? Or are you silent? Or, worse, are you actually discouraging them?

If more Americans, especially those in positions of influence, whether inside or outside politics and government, personally knew someone in the military, especially in the enlisted ranks, we would be very careful about going to war.

And, once there, we would be absolutely certain that our troops had what they needed, including armored vehicles and enough of everything and everyone to finish the job right.

-

 
At 04 August, 2005 09:06, Blogger markg8 said...

I've been remiss about posting lately, life has been hectic. Not a valid excuse, but there it is.

But I do my part, and if need be get rude about it if I run into resistance from non reality based folks. I try not to because running down the litany of failures by the Bush admin in Iraq, especially at 11 c'clock on a Saturday night at a big backyard barbeque doesn't help, it just turns off the oblivious Bush supporters who wander away for another beer and a happier subject and bums the rest out cuz there are no good options anymore. In my view there's nothing our government can do at this point that's gonna make that country a free market democracy friendly to us.

I always try to steer the conversation to the plight of the Army and our soldiers. These individuals are paying a huge price with repeat rotations, stoploss, divorce rates, PTSD and death. It's killing the volunteer Army and chewing up the Marines too.

I present it as a cut and dry case. Either we get more people to enlist, have a draft or we pull out of Iraq next year and leave the world's second biggest pot of oil sitting under a Shiite on Sunni civil war that
that just may envelope the rest of the
world's biggest oil producing nations.

It cuts off those who think killing 'em all is the answer even if it means shutting up those who think we should walk away.

At that point if I've done it right nobody should be able to figure out my political proclivities. I'm just the hardheaded realist who wants Osama dead and a stable standing ally in Iraq so we can go finish off Al Qaeda.
I don't give anybody the chance to accuse me of being an appeaser or a warmonger.

That's when I talk about OYE. I'm almost 50 so most of the people I party with are middleaged suburbanites with kids. They're deathly afraid their sons and daughters are gonna get dragged into this cauldron. If they're old enough I'm sure over 90% of them avoided the draft with deferments during Vietnam. Most, like me and the majority of American have never been in the military.

That's when I tell 'em about OYE
and you can see the veil of gloom lift. I never ask who they voted for but you can tell.

Dems love it and when Repubs scoff I make sure they understand this is for the most politically active. Even the Repubs like the idea of getting the next generation of political operatives, the people who want to be the next Roves and Matalins to enlist instead of their kids. If they're real hardcore Rush fans they like it even better when I explain we don't need to be making anymore John Kerrys or Ron Kovics. I can take them aside and give
'em the whole righwing meme of "how we lost Vietnam thanks to guys like them.".

The key is to offer this solution as a POSITIVE legitimate effort to solve the problem. I look 'em all in the eye and give it to them straight. It doesn't have to involve any partisanship at all.

 
At 04 August, 2005 09:46, Blogger Karl said...

markg8-

Right on! OYE is a non-partisan positive message for America!

Karl Olson

 
At 04 August, 2005 09:59, Blogger -[Medic]- said...

I just want to say that I am a Republican, I voted for Bush, I support our troops, and I would like nothing more than to serve my country by going over in the sandbox and killing those damn muslim terrorists. Sadly because of medical issues I am prevented from doing this and every day I wish I could be over there, but I can't. I find this blog a horriable waste of space and I am ashamed that there are people such as you who are so happy to publicly display their blatent stupidity to the public.

 
At 04 August, 2005 10:18, Anonymous doe said...

Medic, there's a simple way for you to support the troops and your president, and to assuage your angst about not being able to go "over there" yourself. Encourage others like yourself, but who don't have medical issues, to enlist!

 
At 04 August, 2005 10:41, Anonymous Anonymous said...

pimple on the ass eh, medic?

 
At 04 August, 2005 11:11, Blogger Karl said...

Medic-

I apologize for the anonymous posting immediately above this one.

-

 
At 04 August, 2005 11:14, Blogger Elaine Supkis said...

The war supporters are all terribly disabled. Every last one of them. This is why all wars have the draft.

It is like when Henny Penny asks for help making the bread. No one volunteers until the bread is done. Then she hogged it for herself!

Ha.

So there!

We thought, after the Vietnam war's utter failure, the GOP would be sensible but immediately, they rebuilt their death machine using Rambo and other goofy ENTERTAINMENTS. Now, full of ourselves, we flung our volunteers into a ridiculous war.

I remember how I couldn't interest anyone pratically, in demonstrating against the war until...the draft deferment for STUDENTS was pulled. The very next day, the president of the student council on my campus came running into our Peace and Freedom Center, white faced. His draft number (remember THOSE?) was 78. He was doomed. And scared.

He then pushed for demonstrations on campus and we even had anti draft riots that had to be militarily suppressed and this isn't Berkeley I am talking about.

You can bet, all the right wing fence sitters will sit up and join us in fighting off the Bush wars if they had drafts with no deferments.

Like in a rat's ass.

 
At 04 August, 2005 11:19, Blogger Elaine Supkis said...

And today, we have to decide what this blog is all about.

Is there a serious underside to this blog? Or is it just a funny, haha, lark? I will note that 90% of the most recent postings here came from us moms who are very concerned about all sorts of things and being mothers and having eyes in the back of our heads, we see stuff younger people can't see.

We obviously are a tad more serious than some of the people here since this is, to us, a life and death matter.

I feel we must talk about the draft...a lot. They have the draft boards all set up and ready to spring into action when the next, inevitable "terrorist attack" happens. So we have to be ready, too.

And we old moms are worried. Plenty worried. And pretty pissed off, too. Like others here, we can joke, too, note my cartoons here. But this can't be merely a joke. Remember: not ONE Repub kid will sign up because of Yellow Elephant. They are not our goal.

Our goal is to shame the media every time they "USA USA" flag wave, pretending we are patriotic.

 
At 04 August, 2005 12:04, Blogger Elaine Supkis said...

I will note here the flood of articles streaming in, begging to be published....NOT.

And so it goes. My own blog got the usual 4+ stories today complete with cartoons and other thingies. Here?

Nothing. Nothing from anyone.

Again: send in those postings! If anyone likes to be heard, this is how! I will help anyone who wants to be published.

 
At 04 August, 2005 12:25, Blogger burnplant said...

Elaine,

I don't know that more posts necessarily = better blog.

I don't know that the blog needs a new direction or something has to be decided by anyone. It was doing fine the way it was, even getting mainstream mentions where most blogs don't. The goal of this blog may be too narrow to sustain 4-6 posts a day, but I think that points to it's unique vision, rather than lazy uncaring contributors.

Just because someone is jokey or snarky doesn't mean they don't care as much as others. The General's own site is only serious on occasion, but I don't think anyone doubts that he truly cares. The same should be thought of the people he chose to be here.

I doubt anyone is going to submit anything, or comment much, as long as we are being told what is right and what is wrong by anyone other than the General.

 
At 04 August, 2005 12:31, Blogger Karl said...

Elaine-

I agree with burnplant immediately above.

One or two new, concise, on-topic posts a day is quite enough. [Unless time is of the essence, I tend to save as a draft and wait for an opportune moment.] What counts is quality.

For this blog, we need to focus on asking vocal supporters of U.S. military intervention whether they have considered serving, or have encouraged their circle of influence (those they know) to do so.

Their responses are the key to the effectiveness of this blog.

If you'd like to share something interesting that doesn't fit the topic, please create another blog and post away! [And feel free to include a link in a brief comment. No problem at all.]

Thanks very much.

Karl Olson

-

 
At 04 August, 2005 12:39, Blogger Karl said...

PS. If the Young Republicans and College Republicans all put themselves where their politics are, our country wouldn't even be considering a draft:

http://www.unconfirmedsources.com/index.php?itemid=1044

-

 
At 04 August, 2005 12:59, Blogger Elaine Supkis said...

Yup. As always.

Question is, what are we going to do about this? We can't make news at home, just like in the sixties, we had to go out and do stuff.

The grannies in Tucson did things.

You can do things, too, that make the news. Like leaflet the Operation Yellow Elephant on campus when the freshmen come in next week for orientation!

 
At 04 August, 2005 13:01, Blogger Elaine Supkis said...

Oh, if you want to email the general with your articles DO SO.

He can then take the time and trouble to deal with it all. Heh.

 
At 04 August, 2005 13:01, Blogger Elaine Supkis said...

And one article a day here?

OK. What is it today? Who is writing it? Hmmm?

 
At 04 August, 2005 13:21, Blogger Karl said...

Elaine-

Thanks for your question.

I did post an article July 31. Since then we've had a large number of not-very-on-topic posts, which is why we are having this discussion here.

Too many long posts tend to bury the earlier ones, even if they are from the same day. That's why I think it's best to stick to just one or two per day. Concise, on-topic posts keep interested readers coming back.

That leads to the idea spreading, etc. At least, what I've seen the past couple of days will definitely not serve this shared goal.

Thank you.

Sincerely,

Karl Olson

-

 
At 04 August, 2005 13:23, Anonymous Anonymous said...

ELAINE IS RIGHT ON ALL WARS HAVE THE DRAFT EVEN THOUGH THERE HASNT BEEN A DRAFT IN 30 YEARS OR MORE AND THERE HAVE BEEN MANY WARS THERE WILL BE A DRAFT AND IT WILL BE RETROACTIVE TO THE WAR AGAINST BROWN PANAMANIANS THE WAR AGAINST BROWN YUGOSLAVIANS THE WAR AGAINST BROWN AFGHANIS THE WAR AGAINST BROWN GRENADENS THE FIRST WAR AGAINST BROWN IRAQIS AND ALL THOSE OTHER WARS BECAUSE THEY ARENT OVER YET

 
At 04 August, 2005 13:23, Anonymous Anonymous said...

DO SOMETHING YOU SELF-RITEOUS BITCH!

 
At 04 August, 2005 13:31, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Like using lower-case letters?

 
At 04 August, 2005 14:11, Anonymous JTN said...

Elaine,

I have always thought the most galling part of the Army recruiting debacle is not just the fact that the right wing war wongers don't feel the need to enlist and fight their war, but that even our vaunted war drum beating political leaders make no calls to Americans to enlist. The Army will be short a whole division this year, but not a peep. They even try to hide how badly recruiting is going. Georgie porgie made one hollow statement that "people who want to enlist should." All those "patriot" ministers? Why aren't they herding their flock of witless sheep into the recruiting offices? Where are the Uncle Sam posters? Rush's call to dittoheads to serve their country? The answer? The right wing is terrified that Americans, and especially their chickenshit supporters, will realize that there IS a war and that young men and women like them will be dying tomorrow and for years to come. After thousands have died needlessly, some Republican President will abruptly declare victory and cut and run just like they always have, in Iraq, episode I, Lebanon, Vietnam, Korea. Hell, the only "war" a Republican president has won in the last 100 years was Panama. The Rush, Hannity, O'Reilly bunch would see their ratings plummet if they started calling their rabid listeners to actually serve their nation in any other way except shopping. The Republican party is most afraid of having to take on OYE's cause. They would probably rather restart the draft (with all the Cheney, Bush, Rush ("medical") exemptions reinstated to protect the trust fundees.) You will see that Bush will cut and run from Iraq before he calls his loyal cult to bleed for him. The military will be a hollow core before anything changes.

 
At 04 August, 2005 14:34, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Part of me agrees with Mr. Caps Lock up above. All this talk about a possible draft isn't helping OYE. It's only making those who run this site look like nut-jobs. And what's with all the talk of purpose? OYE's purpose is plastered everywhere! Sign Up or Shut Up! I think that some people are trying to turn OYE into something bigger then it needs to be. Its original goal of exposing hypocrocy on the part of young republicans was enough! Attacking videogames alienates you from a large portion of thse that would be your supporters! Not to mention that thats completely beside the piont of the blog. What's really a shame is that OYE had the potential to actually change something. It could have made a difference in American politics, but instead it's become nothing more then just another blog for liberals to rant about everything but the issue.

P.S. Elaine if you hate videogames and Rambo movies why not post about that in one of your other 1,000 blogs?

 
At 04 August, 2005 15:10, Anonymous Stefan said...

Elaine - sorry that you are not in a humourous mood, I can understand this. However the way OYE could work is by making fun of republican warmongers. Funny articles are read, complaints are not read. A funny article can get the message out: those who want this war are not willing to serve and are not to put their own lives at risk for their empire-building policies. An angry passionate article will go nowhere and won't make a difference, however justified the anger may be.

 
At 04 August, 2005 15:11, Blogger Karl said...

anonymous-

Well put. Let's keep Operation Yellow Elephant on-topic and on-target.

Sincerely,

Karl Olson

-

 
At 04 August, 2005 16:51, Anonymous Oscar Wilde said...

The ease that old generals send young men to their deaths knows no end.

To Bush and Blair I leave this.

Sneak home and pray, you'll never know, the hell where youth and laughter go.

Siegfried Sassoon. 1917.

 
At 04 August, 2005 19:21, Anonymous Rachel said...

elaine is never in a good mood

 
At 04 August, 2005 22:30, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I started writing this post last night but then erased it when I thought, what the hell.

It was and this is a response to Elaine's remonstrations urging that this site keep a somber tenor. I felt a little sting because what I had written earlier in the day was a bit of the old gallows humor. Whistling in the dark only gets me so far and anesthesia seems a poor other choise.

Other than the pitiful few who come attempting to draw blood, only people with good intentions write here or at its sire, JG. All Sturn und Drang all the time makes for very weary foot soldiers.

The cause is noble and pure. Lightening up doesn't mean letting up. Yo, Karl, see ya in the funny papers. And, Elaine, you da kine for your massive heart and your dogged commitment.
`

 
At 04 August, 2005 22:34, Anonymous stinkeye said...

Hey, I've never been anonymous in my life! Full credit for the above is due the terrible stinkeye.
`

 
At 05 August, 2005 22:42, Anonymous Anonymous said...

castrate all republicans!

 
At 06 August, 2005 22:56, Anonymous Anonymous said...

and take out their assholes so they cant be fags

 
At 07 August, 2005 16:23, Anonymous Anonymous said...

they would still be fags and they would still eat shit out of there colostomy bags

 
At 07 August, 2005 18:40, Anonymous Jo Fish said...

Hey, Medic, what exactly is the nature of your "disability"? IQ issues? What part of the whole Preznit Wasted Salary's foreign policy and invasion strategery do you support?

And what in your mind constitutes a "good use" of the internet? Publishing the meeting times for cross-burnings, lynchings and excutions of those suspected of mutiny and sedition? Grow up and get over it. Open your eyes and look around you, everything your precious Preznit has told you has pretty much turned out to be a lie.

I'm pretty proud of my military service to this country, it's what defined who I am in large part. But now the 1600 Crew has made me ashamed of what we have done: use of gratutitous, overwhelming violence and force to satisfy the infantile rage and ranting of a spoiled, half-wit rich kid who always failed upwards because rich daddy and domineering mommy were there to break his fall.

So, Sign up or Shut up. It's that simple.

 
At 09 August, 2005 13:24, Anonymous Anonymous said...

proud of your service? how many poor and brown people did you kill in illegal imperialist wars?

 
At 10 August, 2005 00:01, Anonymous Anonymous said...

YOU DONT HAVE AN ANSWER DO YOU YOU STINKING SHIT EATING PUSSY

 

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