Dark Bilious Vapors

But how could I deny that I possess these hands and this body, and withal escape being classed with persons in a state of insanity, whose brains are so disordered and clouded by dark bilious vapors....
--Rene Descartes, Meditations on First Philosophy: Meditation I

Home » Archives » May 2005 » I notice a hole in his resume, though....

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05/24/2005: I notice a hole in his resume, though....

A member of a mailing list I'm on sent this to the list:

War Films, Hollywood and Popular Culture

Michael Medved
Radio Host and Author, Right Turns: Unconventional Lessons from a Controversial Life

Michael Medved is a nationally syndicated radio talk show host, best-selling author and film critic. He graduated with honors from Yale and attended Yale Law School. After working as a screenwriter in Hollywood, he reviewed films for CNN and later worked as chief film critic for the New York Post. He also served for twelve years as co-host of Sneak Previews on PBS. His daily three-hour radio program is heard in over 170 markets and his columns on media and society appear regularly in USA Today, where he serves as a member of the Board of Contributors. Mr. Medved is the author of ten books, including Hollywood vs. America, Saving Childhood: Protecting Our Children from the National Assault on Innocence (with Diane Medved) and, most recently, Right Turns: Unconventional Lessons from a Controversial Life.

The following is adapted from a lecture delivered on March 9, 2005, on the Hillsdale College campus, during a five-day seminar on the topic “War on Film,” sponsored by the Center for Constructive Alternatives.

On my radio show today, I addressed the topic of military "counter-recruiters." You know what military recruiters are ­the people who go to high schools and colleges and tell young people about their opportunities to serve their country in the military. Well, now there are also "counter-recruiters" who go to these schools and tell young people why they shouldn’t serve their country in the military. I had one of them on my show today and put one of your Hillsdale freshmen on with him, and she asked him the crucial question he couldn’t answer intelligently: "What would the world be like without the American military?" He said that the world would be a "beautiful place." But of course this would only be true if a world enslaved under Nazism or communism or Islamo-fascism could be called beautiful. Without the U.S. military in the last century, it would be one of these.
We'll leave aside the issue of the "intelligence" of the counter-recruiter's answer; I'm not disposed to defend that. But I do notice one thing, skimming that capsule biography of Mr. Medved that precedes his speech (and reading in detail his much lengthier biography on the Web) that he himself thought that the "opportunites to serve [his] country in the military" were so wonderful, and so compelling, that he gave military service a pass himself.

Fucking hypocrite.

As a veteran, and as a former Navy JAG, I am of the opinion that there should be "counter-recruiters". I know a lot of kids (most of them were clients of mine, obviously) who got bad paper (most of them bad conduct discharges for purely military offenses) and resultant federal criminal convictions (courts martial count as federal convictions for your record) that they never should have had in an ideal world, because they really weren't cut out for military service, but nobody ever sat them down and forced them to deal with reality.

I have nothing against military service; I signed up voluntarily, myself. But it's not for everyone, and it's not treasonous to point that out to potential recruits. Both the military and the potential recruits would be better served for it.

Len on 05.24.05 @ 06:23 PM CST

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