The GOP wasted no time in creating yet another self-induced government shutdown showdown. Not even two full months into their control of Congress, and they are pushing a critical federal department towards shutting down, all in an effort to make a political point.
Just cutting the defense budget and rebalancing to the Reserves will go only so far to make us stronger, more secure, and most of all freer. Institutionalizing national service and sacrifice will help restore enduring national strengths.
Militarism in the U.S. seems to have a gravitational force pulling a wide array of resources and sectors into its orbit. Our involvement with Iraq serves as a case study for how deeply rooted militarism is in American culture and political life.
As was entirely predictable, once Obama stood up for taxing the rich folk a wee bit more, the Republicans fired back with what they think is the biggest weapon in their arsenal: screaming "Class warfare!"
"Supporting" the soldier necessarily means sharing his desire for victory. From this perspective, there is an inherent contradiction in claiming to "support" the soldier while taking actions that undercut his efforts.
What both candidates have gotten wrong is the old adage of "Mission First, Troops Always" -- that no matter how much you want to take care of those under your command, your unit's assigned mission must come before their personal well-being.