Thursday, May 21, 2009

Other Priorities

NOLA Happenings: It's a packed Memorial Day weekend! How anyone can compress the New Orleans Wine and Food Experience into a mere four days is beyond, but I'll bet that it's fun trying...

Want to chase that exquisite wine and food with some music and art? Head over to the Bayou Boogaloo...

If your tastes run to the Mediterranean, you won't want to miss Greece on the Bayou...

And if you just have to get out of town, hustle over to the Plaquemines Parish Seafood Festival...

In a typically careless piece, David Broder writes of how President Obama is "trying on and fitting himself to the role of commander in chief," "predictably" drawing opposition from Democratic party activists. One reason for this, Broder grandly claims, is that "today's Democrats really are isolated from the military." One commenter supplied this helpful if slightly dated list in rejoinder:

  • Richard Gephardt: Air National Guard, 1965-71.
  • David Bonior: Staff Sgt., Air Force 1968-72.
  • Tom Daschle: 1st Lt., Air Force SAC 1969-72.
  • Al Gore: enlisted Aug. 1969; sent to Vietnam Jan. 1971 as an army journalist in 20th Engineer Brigade.
  • Bob Kerrey: Lt. j.g. Navy 1966-69; Medal of Honor, Vietnam.
  • Daniel Inouye: Army 1943-47; Medal of Honor, WWII.
  • John Kerry: Lt., Navy 1966-70; Silver Star, Bronze Star with Combat V, Purple Hearts.
  • Charles Rangel: Staff Sgt., Army 1948-52; Bronze Star, Korea.
  • Max Cleland: Captain, Army 1965-68; Silver Star & Bronze Star, Vietnam.
  • Ted Kennedy: Army, 1951-53.
  • Tom Harkin: Lt., Navy, 1962-67; Naval Reserve, 1968-74.
  • Jack Reed: Army Ranger, 1971-1979; Captain, Army Reserve 1979-91.
  • Fritz Hollings: Army officer in WWII; Bronze Star and seven campaign ribbons.
  • Leonard Boswell: Lt. Col., Army 1956-76; Vietnam, DFCs, Bronze Stars, and Soldier's Medal.
  • Pete Peterson: Air Force Captain, POW. Purple Heart, Silver Star and Legion of Merit.
  • Mike Thompson: Staff sergeant, 173rd Airborne, Purple Heart.
  • Bill McBride: Candidate for Fla. Governor. Marine in Vietnam; Bronze Star with Combat V.
  • Gray Davis: Army Captain in Vietnam, Bronze Star.
  • Pete Stark: Air Force 1955-57
  • Chuck Robb: Vietnam
  • Howell Heflin: Silver Star
  • George McGovern: Silver Star & DFC during WWII.
  • Bill Clinton: Did not serve. Student deferments. Entered draft but received #311.
  • Jimmy Carter: Seven years in the Navy.
  • Walter Mondale: Army 1951-1953
  • John Glenn: WWII and Korea; six DFCs and Air Medal with 18 Clusters.
  • Tom Lantos: Served in Hungarian underground in WWII. Saved by Raoul Wallenberg.

  • Dennis Hastert: did not serve.
  • Tom Delay: did not serve.
  • Roy Blunt: did not serve.
  • Bill Frist: did not serve.
  • Mitch McConnell: did not serve.
  • Rick Santorum: did not serve.
  • Trent Lott: did not serve.
  • Dick Cheney: did not serve. Several deferments, the last by marriage.
  • John Ashcroft: did not serve. Seven deferments to teach business.
  • Jeb Bush: did not serve.
  • Karl Rove: did not serve.
  • Saxby Chambliss: did not serve. "Bad knee." The man who attacked Cleland's patriotism.
  • Paul Wolfowitz: did not serve.
  • Vin Weber: did not serve.
  • Richard Perle: did not serve.
  • Douglas Feith: did not serve.
  • Eliot Abrams: did not serve.
  • Richard Shelby: did not serve.
  • Jon Kyl: did not serve.
  • Tim Hutchison: did not serve.
  • Christopher Cox: did not serve.
  • Newt Gingrich: did not serve.
  • Don Rumsfeld: served in Navy (1954-57) as flight instructor.
  • George W. Bush: failed to complete his six-year National Guard; got assigned to Alabama so he could campaign for family friend running for U.S. Senate; failed to show up for required medical exam, disappeared from duty.
  • Ronald Reagan: due to poor eyesight, served in a non-combat role making movies.
  • B-1 Bob Dornan: Consciously enlisted after fighting was over in Korea.
  • Phil Gramm: did not serve.
  • John McCain: Silver Star, Bronze Star, Legion of Merit, Purple Heart and Distinguished Flying Cross.
  • Dana Rohrabacher: did not serve.
  • John M. McHugh: did not serve.
  • JC Watts: did not serve.
  • Jack Kemp: did not serve. "Knee problem," although continued in NFL for 8 years.
  • Dan Quayle: Journalism unit of the Indiana National Guard.
  • Rudy Giuliani: did not serve.
  • George Pataki: did not serve.
  • Spencer Abraham: did not serve.
  • John Engler: did not serve.
  • Lindsey Graham: National Guard lawyer.

  • Sean Hannity: did not serve.
  • Rush Limbaugh: did not serve (4-F with a 'pilonidal cyst.')
  • Bill O'Reilly: did not serve.
  • Michael Savage: did not serve.
  • George Will: did not serve.
  • Chris Matthews: did not serve.
  • Paul Gigot: did not serve.
  • Bill Bennett: did not serve.
  • Pat Buchanan: did not serve.
  • John Wayne: did not serve.
  • Bill Kristol: did not serve.
  • Kenneth Starr: did not serve.
  • Antonin Scalia: did not serve.
  • Clarence Thomas: did not serve.
  • Ralph Reed: did not serve.
  • Michael Medved: did not serve.
Broder has it exactly wrong: It's the party whose members had "other priorties" than military service who pushed us into the debacle of Iraq. Perhaps if their personal experience had been "less isolated" from the military, we wouldn't be there...

Papi homers! More here, here, and here...


Ima Wizer said...

Damn the PUNDITOCRACY! Those chickenshits.

Scrumpy's Baker said...

You're going to inspire me to get back to New Orleans one of these days. I've only been once, with my father. We went to just about every gay bar in town. Something tells me there's more to New Orleans than just gay bars...

Roy said...

Man, I'll bet you could feel the relief in Fenway last night when Big Papi let that one fly!

Isn't it interesting that the biggest opponents to the war all served in the military, and many of them in combat. And isn't it even more interesting that the proponents all, except for John McCain, didn't serve, and many of them actually got deferments, which is draft-board-ese for coming up with excuses why they shouldn't serve. Chenet was the worst of all. During a campaign interview in the 2000 race, when asked why he didn't serve, he said he had "other priorites". Yeah, I'll bet. No wonder he's such a lousy shot!

As for the punditocracy, I'm not surprised. In fact, ol' Bluto the Rushbo got a medical deferment because he had an open lesion over his coccyx, and you get that kind of lesion from consistently not adequately wiping your butt. Why doesn't that surprise me?

But really, for the poll on the punditocracy to be "fair and balanced", you really do need to look at the military records of people like Keith Olbermann, Bill Maher, and Jon Stewart. Out of that particular trio I have a strong suspicion that only Olbermann might have served.

K. said...

Scrump, there is definitely more to NOLA than gay bars! I recommend Jazz Festival: It's actually all kinds of music, not only jazz. I prefer the first weekend myself, although the big national acts usually play on the second weekend. It's just a great time.

K. said...

Roy, I heard Joe Castiglione call Papi's homer through the magic of satellite radio. I wanted to be there!

There's some twisted psychology at work among the chickenhawks. The most egregious example of it was Bush landing on the aircraft carrier in the flight suit, like he was a nine-year old playing army.

Renegade Eye said...

Broder is usually wrong. His last article was so off base, you could only wonder what he could been thinking? It was part of the psyche of the country, being repelled, when Bush wore the flight jacket.