Of course the bromide premise of that old song is bogus, even if many still cleave to it. War is good for absolutely nothin’, unless you have a problem with a distant King who sends his Officers to eat out your Sustenance, or who kidnaps your merchant seamen, or with pirates, or more pirates, or even more jeezly pirates, or an institution that gripped millions in the unchristian bonds of slavery [pdf], or a small dictator of a big country, a big dictator of a small country, or a repellently gross dictator of a teeny-tiny country. Then war comes in rather handy, actually.
After the war, though, the warriors are faced with reintegrating in society. But fear not, returning vets. The great white father in Washington has provided for you. The President, the Empty Suit at the head of the Veteran’s Administration, and a grifting old pol now heading up the Department of the Interior have created the Veterans Job Corps, and they’re funding it with one billion dollars, of which about $450,000,000.00 doesn’t even exist in this country and will be borrowed from
some chumps errr, no, one of Tony Soprano’s loansharks, no, no, our lender of last resort, the People’s Republic of China. Or borrowed from ourselves, in the quaint way that the Fed enables Weimar inflation yet to be scheduled.
No word on whether the Chinese insisted on holding the title to Obama’s $2.2 million campaign bus as collateral, like any other
greedy 1%-er errr, no, typical white person, no, no, payday lender.
But it’s the jobs themselves that tell you what this cabal thinks of veterans. The up-to-20,000 make-work jobs? Manual labor, shoveling manure or whatever in parks for near-minimum wages. The kind of jobs that high school dropouts and ex-cons have to take. That’s the kind of job they think our vets need and want. Or as the White House puts it, “help veterans build the lives the (sic) deserve.” Gee, thanks. Do you have a shovel for us or do we gotta bring our own?
You know what? Vets have a lower-than-average unemployment rate. You know why? First, they’re generally smart and motivated. Employers know they know how to show up on time and work hard. They know how to be part of a team, and usually how to lead one, and they’ve done it. They don’t need minimum wage shit-shoveling sinecures, and the idea that any of these Washington panjandrums think they do shows that they’re completely out of touch with our forces today.
Not that that will shock anybody.
George Patton famously exhorted his men to fight and told them, they don’t want to be telling their sons that, “during the war, son, I shoveled shit in Biloxi, Mississippi.” Those vets didn’t come back to shovel shit in Biloxi, either — they changed the nation and the world (and then trashed it all by turning the baby boomers loose on it, but hey, nobody’s perfect). Now Ken Salazar and Rick Shinseki, and yes, Barack Obama, think it’s a step up for our guys (and now, gals) to come home and shovel shit in Biloxi.
Good luck with that.
Our prediction: no significant number of vets will take these meaningless jobs, and no one will get a meaningful one, through this billion-dollar boondoggle. But they will manage to blow the whole billion before the swindle has run its course.
If you’ll excuse us, Edwin Starr is getting to the very best part… “War has shattered many a young man’s dreams… made him disabled, angry and mean…” And it’s good for absolutely nothin’. Except that without war, some julep-sipping pasty cretin would still have owned Mr Starr. There is that.