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Comment Dated Dec 2, 2005


I heard today that the head of a defense contractor that makes body armor for the military spent ten million dollars on his daughter's bat mitzvah coming of age ceremony. If that's what's in it for some, it becomes easier to see why not everyone might be in too much of a hurry to end the obscenity of other people's kids being sent to attack countries that were never a threat to the United States. I have a suggestion for putting that right. With effect immediately, if the powers and eminencies that are entrusted with running our affairs should come to the conclusion that protection of the nation's interests leaves no alternative but to go to war, then to show their solidarity with the people and accept a proportionate share of the sacrifices they are calling for all to make, everyone--from the President down through all the layers of Congress and the apparatus of state, Pentagon generals, CEOs and management of defense contractors, through to chickenhawk pundits who sit at word processors and in armchairs telling others what their duty is--will be put on the same pay as an infantry private, with no perks or expenses, for the duration. All income in excess of that basic will be taxed as a patriotic contribution to the war effort. I predict that the current mess would be over in a week, and thereafter it will be amazing how many differences and "threats" manage to resolve themselves without the need for sending anyone off to be killed, maimed, burned, or have other reasons for requiring body armor at all.