Road to ruin

The Atlantic has a rather depressing article on The Tragedy of the American Military. Here’s the kernel of the story: the knee-jerk idolatry of the military by the American public is leading to a decline in its effectiveness and to wasteful expenditure of human lives.

If I were writing such a history now, I would call it Chickenhawk Nation, based on the derisive term for those eager to go to war, as long as someone else is going. It would be the story of a country willing to do anything for its military except take it seriously. As a result, what happens to all institutions that escape serious external scrutiny and engagement has happened to our military. Outsiders treat it both too reverently and too cavalierly, as if regarding its members as heroes makes up for committing them to unending, unwinnable missions and denying them anything like the political mindshare we give to other major public undertakings, from medical care to public education to environmental rules. The tone and level of public debate on those issues is hardly encouraging. But for democracies, messy debates are less damaging in the long run than letting important functions run on autopilot, as our military essentially does now. A chickenhawk nation is more likely to keep going to war, and to keep losing, than one that wrestles with long-term questions of effectiveness.

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Thank you, Germany

Finally, someone does the right thing.

The European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights has filed a criminal complaint against U.S. torture program architects and members of the Bush Administration. The organization has accused CIA director George Tenet and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld of war crimes and they’ve called for a German prosecutor to conduct an immediate investigation.

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Two-faced Ken Ham

Answers in Genesis has an explanation for why the state of Kentucky yanked the tax exemption from their Ark Park. It doesn’t have much basis in reality, which is probably why they presented it on Fox News this morning.

Smarmy AiG Lawyer: We have a theory about that. I think it’s because these radical atheist kind of organizations have applied political pressure, and it’s sad when that happens. It also happens to be unlawful and that’s why it looks like we may be headed to court.

Fox News host: Why is it unlawful?

Hey, that was my question! Why should it be unlawful for an atheist organization to use politics to oppose actions that are against their interests? That’s what politics is for!

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We won’t be missing Michele

Bachmann is out of office, fleeing political life one step ahead of being caught out in her ethics violations. But she’s still happy to lie for her cause, and brag about defeating liberals.

Well, telling the truth bothers them, Bachmann said. They don’t like to have the truth told about them, and that’s really what it is. I didn’t fear the left. I decided to take them on in the arena of ideas by attacking their false premises and their false narratives.

Bachmann told World Net Daily, which referred to her as a GOP legend in the headline, that she had become a media target because she had basically outsmarted her liberal foes.

That’s the best way to defeat them, by the way — defeat them with evidence and defeat them with their false premises, and I did that, she said.

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