Saturday, June 14, 2008

"I said, war, huh- good God, y'all! What is it good for?," or... "a glimpse through the eyes of our elders."

Hey! You! the reader:

You don't have to hang around Crock-Town very long to pick up on the management's views regarding violence as a means to constructively solve problems. Herewithin, it has been said that our world does a worse job of collaborating for productivity than a kindergarten classroom.

And thats is just one example of many illustrations and examples of violence feeding upon itself.

Yet I know there must be things I don't understand, and powers older and wiser than I. Maybe I'm just not a good fighter, so my mind is programmed to dissuade violence, because I am a good thinker. Whatever I'm missing- it has to be something. Otherwise I would have to accept that the whole world, including the leaders of major nations, is composed of a bunch of illiterate, dumb-ass, morons.

Follow me:
After reading, No Ordinary Time, a book about Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt and World War II, I was talking with my father about how I never really grasped in my history classes how close a war it was- how easily the allies could have lost. And during this discussion dad sat up straighter in his chair, seemed to be filled with a sort of animal-like, survival fire, and with a serious-as-a-heart-attack look in his eyes, said something along the lines of, "oh YEAH. I mean, they had US ON OUR ASSES there for a while!"

The point being, I have never experienced a world where I felt unsafe in my own country. Maybe for a few months around 2001 and 2002 I came close to that state, but I have never lived in fear of a stranger coming onto the television one day announcing, "I, along with my forces of violence, am in charge of the United States, Canada, and Mexico from now on. A lot of things are going to change around here. Here are the new rules...."

That said, I recently received an email from my neo-conservative/activist/painter/sculptor/friend (yeah I know- if free-spirited neo-con is not the definition of neurosis, I don't know what is) that I found poignant enough to share.

So as promised, a glimpse into the eyes of our elders:


When in England at a fairly large conference, Colin Powell was asked by the Archbishop of Canterbury if our plans for Iraq were just an example of "empire building" by George Bush. He answered by saying, 'Over the years, the United
States has sent many of its fine young men and women into great peril to fight for freedom beyond our borders. The only amount of land we have ever asked for in return is enough to bury those that did not return.

You could have heard a pin drop.

Then there was a conference in France where a number of international engineers were taking part, including French and American. During a break one of the French engineers came back into the room saying, 'Have you heard the latest dumb stunt Bush has done? He has sent an aircraft carrier to Indonesia to help the tsunami victims. What does he intended to do, bomb them?'

A Boeing engineer stood up and replied quietly: 'Our carriers have three hospitals on board that can treat several hundred people; they are nuclear powered and can supply emergency electrical power to shore facilities; they have three cafeterias with the capacity to feed 3,000 people three meals a day, they can produce several thousand gallons of fresh water from sea water each day, and they carry half a dozen helicopters for use in transporting victims and injured to and from their flight deck. We have eleven such ships; how many does France have?'

You could have heard a pin drop

A U.S. Navy Admiral was attending a naval conference that included Admirals from the U.S. , English, Canadian, Australian and French Navies. At a cocktail reception, he found himself standing with a large group of Officers that included personnel from most of those countries. Everyone was chatting away in English as they sipped their drinks but a French admiral suddenly complained that, 'whereas Europeans learn many languages, Americans learn only English.' He then asked, 'Why is it that we always have to speak English in these conferences rather than speaking French?'

Without hesitating, the American Admiral replied, 'Maybe it's because the Brits, Canadians, Aussies and Americans arranged it so you wouldn't have to speak German.'

You could have heard a pin drop.

A group of Americans, retired teachers, recently went to France on a tour. Robert Whiting, an elderly gentleman of 83, arrived in Paris by plane. At French Customs, he took a few minutes to locate his passport in his carry on. 'You have been to France before, monsieur?', the customs officer asked sarcastically. Mr. Whiting admitted that he had been to France previously. 'Then you should know enough to have your passport ready.' The American said, "The last time I was here, I didn't have to show it."

'Impossible, replied the customs officer. "Americans always have to show your passports on arrival in France !"
The American senior gave the Frenchman a long hard look. Then he quietly explained. 'Well, when I came ashore at Omaha Beach on D-Day in '44 to help liberate this country, I couldn't find any Frenchmen to show it to.'

You could have heard a pin drop

What Is A Veteran?
A 'Veteran' - whether active duty, discharged, retired, or reserve - is someone who, at one point in his or her life, wrote a blank check made payable to 'The United States of America,' for an amount of 'up to, and including his or her life.'

That is honor, and there are way too many people in this country today, who no longer understand that fact.

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