The Jury Talks Back

1/30/2009

“Civilian Expeditionary Workforce”?

Filed under: Uncategorized — Scott Jacobs @ 11:19 pm

In what might be the first step in an attempt to cut the defense budget, I give you this.

The move is seen by some as an initial step towards fulfilling president Obama’s promise to form a civilian national security force as powerful as the U.S. military.

Wow.  I really can’t even begin to tell you how warm and fuzzy this makes me feel inside.  You think the uniforms will be brown?

And how about this little gem?

The intent of the program “is to maximize the use of the civilian workforce to allow military personnel to be fully utilized for operational requirements,” according to a Defense Department report.

I’ve seen less drivel come off of corporate memos.

The directive, which is effective immediately, states that civilian employees of the DoD will be asked to sign agreements stating that they will deploy in support of military missions for up to two years if needed.

Workforce members, who are divided into different designations under the directive, will serve overseas in support of humanitarian, reconstruction and, if necessary, combat-support missions.

You know what we call people like that around where I live?  Military personel.  Soldiers, sailors, and Marines.  And while “every effort will be made to reassign the employee to a nondeploying position” should the employee not want to deploy, there is a lovely loophole:

Management retains the authority to direct and assign civilian employees, either voluntarily, involuntarily, or on an unexpected basis to accomplish the DoD mission.

So don’t go making plans there, civie…

And I love how it’s “up to two years” for overseas deployment.  I recall the Left going insane over military personnel shipping out for 12 months, and they want to make civilians go for up to two years?

Yeah, there is no way this can end badly…

Literary Criticism Doesn’t Have to Be Stupid (Either)

Filed under: Uncategorized — Fritz @ 5:19 pm

Over at Acephalous, SEK takes Ben Shapiro to task for being such a stupid curmudgeon at such a young age.  SEK writes,

There’s much Updike wrote I won’t defend—Toward the End of Time deserved the slagging it received—but for Young Master Shapiro to choose, from a hefty body of work, the opening paragraph of Rabbit Redux to bury Updike beneath should stand as the object lesson in why movement conservatives whose tastes range from Forsythe to Uris ought not be writing about literature.

Read it for yourself.  And then think about where your expertise lies before you post.

Picture of the Day: Work Accident

Filed under: Uncategorized — aunursa @ 4:08 pm

Abdul Rahman Al-Khatib, a Gaza cameraman, was seriously burned after getting too close to the torched US and Israeli flags.

Via Michelle Malkin

An Ethical Quandry

Filed under: Uncategorized — Fritz @ 3:38 pm

At the breakfast table this morning I asked myself, why, oh why, would a woman with 6 children, all of them under the age of 10, a set of twins being the youngest, undergo fertility treatments?  Is that ethical?

I think that a distinction needs to be made between a woman with six young children who becomes pregnant naturally (oops!), and one who takes extensive, expensive, and, strictly speaking, medically unnecessary steps.  With the medications, doctors visits, ultra-sounds, various procedures, etc…, fertility treatments, rarely covered by medical insurance, start at around $10,000 and can go up, way up, from there.  This woman must have been fully aware of what she was doing and undertook great cost and great effort to do it.

I don’t know this woman’s particular medical history, but I do know that in IVF even if you have 8 (or more) viable embreyos that make it to the 5 day stage, you don’t need to implant them all.  The storage technology has come a long way and the loss of, for want of a better word, potency, is minimal.

The woman refused selective abortions to reduce the number of fetuses.  This seems to me to be the only obviously morally unobjectionable decision made by anyone involved in this case.

A lot of discussion that I’ve seen on various blogs skips right to what many believe to be the heart of the matter.  Is there alimit of the number of children one ought to bear or a limit to what you may do to bear them?  One blogger asks,

When so many children are dying of starvation and disease around the world, and when so many childless couples are trying hard to have one child, isn’t it selfish to produce eight more?

The first question, whether in light of world poverty this sort of thing ought to be allowed, seems sort of silly.  I’m finding hard to imagine what effect 8 more children in the U.S. will have on the poor and benighted of the world.  The second question is even worse.  I don’t think that there is such desperate need for fertility drugs such that a ration should be put in place to make sure that “truly deserving” couples receive them.  There is as much and as good left over for others to use.

It’s my position that children ought to be born or raised for their own sake; they are not merely ends to satisfy the desires of the parents.  In addition, the state has an interest in the cultivation of the young.  This may mean staying out of the way of good parents, and not allowing bad or poor parents to shirk their responsibilities, but it may also mean not allowing something this extreme to take place.

In the end, I object to her behavior, though it may be out of pure prejudice, which according to Kirk isn’t always a bad thing, and I’m not quite willing to prescribe some sort of legal sanction, but I’m still trying to formulate the exact ethical principle at work.


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