Thursday, October 16, 2008

Recruiting in the News

I meant to get this done on Tuesday but I forgot.

The Army, officially, made its recruiting mission for the year. 101% for the RA and 106% for the USAR.

As I'd mentioned last week though, while this fact was reported, it was reported as part of a large narrative about the services, bascially, bribing folks w/ several hundred million dollars in bonus money. Of course I'm yet to hear any correction or clarification on how much of that was for bonuses and how much was for things like the Army College Fund. I won't hold my breath.

Now for the next phase in the narrative. With the economy going belly up, now recruiters will no longer be portrayed as people preying on naive young people who don't understand the consquences of their actions. We will now be predators offering money to people who cannot find a job elsewhere because the free markets have failed. Of course it's not untrue what it being reported about how the volunteer military will benefit from economic troubles. The Army was always a good job, but now it's even better since, well, it's a steady paycheck, it's bonus money, it's free health care, it's college money. It's also now stable employment. Unfortunatly for the teeming herds of financial folks facing unemployment, the Army's finance field isn't exactly huge. Oh well, take what you can get.

Really though, can they make an effort at even reporting? When things sucked it was front page news. Things are good, it's ignored until someone does something stupid. Now that the economy sucks and people are hurting, suddenly recruiting is reported as being in a great position to prey on those left vulnerable.

Speaking of preying on those who are vulnerable, apparently some protestors in the Bay Area vandalized a military recruiting station while it was empty. My favorite part of that is this quote
The U.S. government has always waged a war of extermination against land-based ways of life in order to impose capitalist exploitation of the earth and its peoples.
That's a fine lot of insane nonsense right there. Who the hell actually talks that way? "Land-based ways of life"? Really? What the hell kind of inane is that? What the hell is a "Land-based way of life"? Are they hunter-gatherers? Some sort of paleolithic agrarian society? The best part though is, I can find absolutly no other evidence they actually did something. There is no reporting of it. I can't imagine how frustrating it must be to strike such a viscious blow for the good of the land and all indigenious peoples and not even get a 1.5 inch blurb in the local news section of the town paper.

The best part of it though is that, it will back fire. No one likes a thug. While the recruiters will have the damage repaired and drive on, they get to compare the quiet professionalism of the armed services with the thoughtless mob mentality of those who oppose them. The recruiters will remain there, and they will continue to successfully recruit in the area. All that the vandals accomplished was to show themselves as the immature punks they are.

Continuing with events from that part of Cali, while some children were mixing paint and acid, adults in San Rafael exercised their First Amendment rights by petitioning for the opportunity to present their anti-military views to high school students. Good on them for, rather than trying to silence the recruiter, trying to provide an opposing voice. I don't agree with them, but I'm glad they get the opportunity to say their piece.


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