U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Great Debates
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 02-11-2016, 01:42 PM
 
Location: Chattanooga, TN
2,773 posts, read 3,676,401 times
Reputation: 4236

Advertisements

I don't agree with forced military conscription except in cases of extreme national emergency, and WWII was the last time this happened. The country (Pearl Harbor) and our allies were being attacked by aggressive expanding empires... if you want to remain free, you fight. Neither Vietnam nor Korea qualified.

That said, I've long held the opinion that 2 or so years of some form of mandatory paid national service between high school and college would be a good thing. It could be military service, construction work (like the depression-era CCC building trails and maintaining National Parks), foreign aid work (Peace Corp), welfare/food pantry distribution, or anything that benefits society as a whole.

It would give teens a little more time to mature before making permanent life decisions, show them what the real world is like if they don't go to college, as well as help them develop independence.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 02-11-2016, 04:17 PM
 
Location: Nescopeck, Penna.
11,362 posts, read 6,783,711 times
Reputation: 14412
Quote:
Originally Posted by jwkilgore View Post
I've long held the opinion that 2 or so years of some form of mandatory paid national service between high school and college would be a good thing. It could be military service, construction work (like the depression-era CCC building trails and maintaining National Parks), foreign aid work (Peace Corp), welfare/food pantry distribution, or anything that benefits society as a whole.
No, no, a thousand times NO!

This idea violates the entire concept of foresight and individual responsibility, because it subscribes to the belief that simply because a person was born within the territorial confines of a nation state, (s)he owes something to the politicians who control it. It is an idea which has emboldened a succession of power brokers and power-seekers from Bonaparte to Hitler to Stalin, and a substantial proportion of our ancestors came here to avoid it.

I think a lot of us are willing to recognize that as our society becomes increasingly complex, certain roles and tasks emerge which are, possibly for reasons such as personal risk or horizons of time beyond the life span of the individual, difficult to fill; or which the usual interplay of supply and demand can't seem to resolve, although I regard these latter examples as very rare.

If, at that point, the state (which is nothing more than an entity vested with a legal monopoly on the use of coercion) offers additional rewards to fill those wants and needs, I see nothing wrong with it; but from that point, it is a very short step to providing a bureaucracy (which cannot answer to the normal rules of supply and demand) to expand ad infinitum by identifying new "problems" to "solve". The provision of a huge pool of conscript labor would merely feed such a cancer.

Last edited by 2nd trick op; 02-11-2016 at 04:49 PM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-11-2016, 04:53 PM
 
Location: Chattanooga, TN
2,773 posts, read 3,676,401 times
Reputation: 4236
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2nd trick op View Post
This idea violates the entire concept of foresight and individual responsibility, because it subscribes to the belief that simply because an individual was born within the territorial confines of a nation state, (s)he owes something to the politicians who control it..
Totally the wrong concept. The debt is owed to society itself, not to the politicians who control it. The People benefit from easy access to good trails and bathrooms in National Parks, not politicians, so the People should be responsible for maintaining it. The People benefit from secure borders, so the People should be responsible for defending them.

Those who benefit from society's largess have a responsibility to help maintain the society. It's the same logic behind paying taxes, but I see you claim to be a Libertarian so I assume that reasoning won't work with you.


I chose a few select examples, but any number of "service" roles could qualify. Instead of raising generations of kids who believe everyone/the government/whoever "owes" them something, show them that everyone must work.

Even during the former times of forced military conscription an avowed Pacifist (Quakers, etc.) could be granted an exemption from actual fighting, but they still had to serve in the military in some role or another.

And for what it's worth, the children of politicians would NOT be exempt from this mandate.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-11-2016, 05:40 PM
eok
 
6,684 posts, read 2,946,432 times
Reputation: 8439
When a drill sergeant is standing in front of you, dissing you loudly, you're at risk of permanent hearing loss. It's better to make it voluntary, and pay the recruits decent wages, to motivate them not to get fired, and preserve their hearing.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-11-2016, 06:55 PM
 
Location: Nescopeck, Penna.
11,362 posts, read 6,783,711 times
Reputation: 14412
Quote:
Originally Posted by jwkilgore View Post
Those who benefit from society's largess have a responsibility to help maintain the society. It's the same logic behind paying taxes, but I see you claim to be a Libertarian so I assume that reasoning won't work with you.
People who rely upon appeals in the name of "mankind", "society", "humanity", "common good" -- whatever, invariably do so because their ideas fall flat before the free exchange of goods, services, and human opinion; they "need" coercion in order to make them "work". The present uproar over "global warming" -- as opposed to a measured, but not-very-expensive (or -expansive) study of climate change is a perfect example.

I have already acknowledged that a complete laissez-faire approach is not going to provide all the answers for a post-industrial society; but that is not a justification for a return to the Age of Absolutes.

Direct and complete control of the time, attention and obedience of an otherwise-responsible individual represents a huge step in that direction.

There are very few economic "loose ends" which can't be addressed via direct compensation, but I see no threat in harnessing the necessary machinery of statecraft to expedite the process. Beyond that point, however, lies a very slippery slope.

Quote:
And for what it's worth, the children of politicians would NOT be exempt from this mandate.
Thank you for providing a perfect example of the appeals to petty jealousy which would-be strongmen have always used to cloak their pursuit of power.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-12-2016, 07:38 AM
 
Location: Chattanooga, TN
2,773 posts, read 3,676,401 times
Reputation: 4236
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2nd trick op View Post
People who rely upon appeals in the name of "mankind", "society", "humanity", "common good" -- whatever, invariably do so because their ideas fall flat before the free exchange of goods, services, and human opinion; they "need" coercion in order to make them "work".
I notice that, instead of countering my arguments, you're lumping me in with other "people" and attacking the group. I'm here by myself. I do not "need" coercion to make my arguments "work"; I only need logic and the ability to think clearly.

I suppose you're one of those "I built this by myself and don't owe anything to anybody" types. It must be nice to believe that philosophy (ignorance really is bliss), but I live in the real world. To start, I grew up in a lower-middle-class family that went through quite a few tough times. But I studied in high school as opposed to getting drunk on cheap beer, paid for a master's degree by working multiple jobs while studying enough to maintain a partial scholarship, and have worked continuously ever since in a professional field. I recognize that, to get ahead, you have to work at it, and I did so. Life may throw speed bumps and even roadblocks in your path, but it is your job to find your way over or around them.

Conclusion: the Libertarian part of me fully believes that I am in control of my own destiny.

However, I am intelligent and logical enough to recognize that I am not alone in the world, and no matter how hard I studied and worked, if not for the benefits of my Society I would not have made it. I was able to drive to work this morning at 70mph on well-maintained roads instead of being forced to live within walking distance (tax money for roads and traffic control). During that commute I didn't have to fight off any foreign armies (thanks, US military!). I parked my vehicle downtown in an open garage and fully expect it to be there, unmolested, when I return (thanks, local police!). I could go on and on about governmental copyright protection, the fact I'm breathing clean air in what was once proclaimed as the "dirtiest city in America", public schools, clean water, etc.

Do you honestly believe that someone with mine (or your) exact same intelligence and work ethic would be as successful in a country like, say, modern-day Syria? Or Somalia? Or Columbia? I recognize that if I had been born in one of those countries into a lower-middle-class family, I would still be a lower-middle-class laborer instead of a professional.

I'll bring up this quote of yours from earlier:
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2nd trick op View Post
This idea violates the entire concept of foresight and individual responsibility, because it subscribes to the belief that simply because a person was born within the territorial confines of a nation state, (s)he owes something to the politicians who control it.
Let's look at the bold phrase from another angle. Any human born within the "territorial confines" of the United States of America is immediately granted citizenship along with all rights and privileges that status conveys. The freedom of movement within our borders, freedoms of speech, religion, and freedom against unjustified governmental search and seizure among many, many others. Those rights and privileges are not free; do you believe that the US government owes these rights and benefits to its citizens? If you believe Society owes something to you but you don't owe anything to Society, then we're back to a very special view of reality. Likewise, if you believe that you could be as successful as you are without those benefits and protections, that's another special view of reality.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-12-2016, 10:19 AM
 
Location: MD's Eastern Shore
2,250 posts, read 2,723,490 times
Reputation: 3932
As far as the OP, no. One thing that makes our military (all branches) great is that they are volunteers. No need to fill any part of it up with people who don't want to and/or are not physically able to be there!

And as far as militerizing for any non combative purpose? No to that as well. We don't need a military state.

Quote:
Originally Posted by adams_aj View Post
I think it's time to resurrect the CCC--Civilian Conservation Corps, and use them to rebuild our infrastructure. Working to rebuild our roads, bridges, sewer, water, etc. gets you "three hots and a cot" and a small stipend. If you're able-bodied and on welfare, guess what: you're now rebuilding our infrastructure.
This I would go with and have said so all along. Not only would it improve our ifrastructure but it would also give people experience doing that kind of work so upon completion of the "program" (I think it should be for a limited time period) people would have the experience to get hired doing similar work or start their own business.


Quote:
Originally Posted by ocnjgirl View Post
And what happens to all those men and women who currently are employed doing just that..give the decision makers a chance to use a bunch of people for free, or pay their own men a living wage including overtime and benefits...guess what ALL the paid employees will be gone. These type jobs are NOT the jobs no one wants. What happens to them when you give all their jobs away? Good luck getting an okay from Unions to go along with this, also.
I can see your point but there are sections that are not getting any work done and wouldn't cut into anything. I live on the coast and when we have storms come through our beaches can get hammered. Let those locals on welfare come in and work for their welfare check by cleaning up the place. Look at graffity covered walls in rough inner city sections. Let the local welfare recipients clean that mess up for there check. Rural areas along interstates with trash thrown all over? again, have those locals receiving welfare come in and clean that up. None of these quick examples, or many other similar ones, will be taking work away from anybody.


There are a lot of places that can accommodate local welfare recipients without cutting into anybody's current work. We can start cleaning up our country again. And it just might (yes I acknowledge there are no guarantees here) return pride to some people and make them realize, perhaps, that being lazy and collecting government cheese that the rest of us pay for just isn't cutting it anymore and that they might as well go back to work!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-12-2016, 10:55 AM
 
8,305 posts, read 8,580,329 times
Reputation: 25923
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2nd trick op View Post
Conscription (a/k/a "the draft") has been diminishing in use since the end of the two World Wars and the fall of the last of the authoritarian states which made heavy use of it. Of the 27 major European nations, only six still have it, but two (Denmark and Norway) have a strong tradition of the concept of "national service" and a third with a similar orientation (the Netherlands) abandoned it only as recently as 1997.

And as we all should recognize, the advancement of industrialization tends to identify a category of "jobs nobody wants" and the present surplus of refugees and displaced persons notwithstanding, the pool of "bottom off the barrel" labor will continue to shrink.

So I want to pose a question (to people of any political orientation) here? in return for personal access to a more generous set of social benefits (health care, insurance, pension, etc,) would you be willing to surrender 2-4 years of your future to the government in a militaristic (but not combative) environment dedicated to filling undesirable roles? Comments as to why, or why not, are welcome.
I think its a great idea. Personally, I would like to see it occurring when we are both young and old. Young people should give up two years for this purpose and there should be various options. They should be allowed to choose traditional military service, building homes for those without one, work as a teacher's assistant in a poor area, forestry and conservation work, service in a hospital as a nursing aide, etc. However, I also think older people shouldn't be exempt unless their health makes it impossible. After retirement, they should be required to help as well for at least one year. I might exempt those who have previously served in the military. National service for older people should primarily involve teaching, daycare for children, and perhaps just even picking up and disposing of garbage.

We have focused too long in this country on the notion that citizenship brings rights. Citizenship ought to bring responsibility as well as rights. I think a program like this that involves people of all ages would be an excellent teaching tool. People really need to understand that freedom isn't free. Its the result of hard work and sacrifice.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-12-2016, 11:58 AM
 
Location: Chattanooga, TN
2,773 posts, read 3,676,401 times
Reputation: 4236
Back up a second... This is from the OP:
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2nd trick op View Post
So I want to pose a question (to people of any political orientation) here? in return for personal access to a more generous set of social benefits (health care, insurance, pension, etc,) would you be willing to surrender 2-4 years of your future to the government in a militaristic (but not combative) environment dedicated to filling undesirable roles? Comments as to why, or why not, are welcome.
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2nd trick op View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by jwkilgore View Post
That said, I've long held the opinion that 2 or so years of some form of mandatory paid national service between high school and college would be a good thing. It could be military service, construction work (like the depression-era CCC building trails and maintaining National Parks), foreign aid work (Peace Corp), welfare/food pantry distribution, or anything that benefits society as a whole.
No, no, a thousand times NO!

This idea violates the entire concept of foresight and individual responsibility, because it subscribes to the belief that simply because a person was born within the territorial confines of a nation state, (s)he owes something to the politicians who control it. It is an idea which has emboldened a succession of power brokers and power-seekers from Bonaparte to Hitler to Stalin, and a substantial proportion of our ancestors came here to avoid it.
You pose a position to be debated in the Great Debates forum and state that "Comments... are welcome". I respond by basically saying that not only do I agree with the opening position, I think it should go farther.

You counter by immediately invoking Godwin's law, comparing my position to Hitler????
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-12-2016, 01:53 PM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
18,885 posts, read 8,860,357 times
Reputation: 18290
Quote:
Originally Posted by jwkilgore View Post
Back up a second... This is from the OP:

You pose a position to be debated in the Great Debates forum and state that "Comments... are welcome". I respond by basically saying that not only do I agree with the opening position, I think it should go farther.

You counter by immediately invoking Godwin's law, comparing my position to Hitler????
This is a tactic the OP has used more than once -- posting what seems to be a fairly good and interesting question, and then attacking posters who oppose the philosophy he slowly iterates as the thread develops. If he really wants an open discussion, I would suggest that the OP should reconsider how he responds to posters who respond to his posts.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Great Debates
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2018, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top