Give Me A Fucking Break!
Actually, I took a (fucking) break for a couple of days, since I expect to be just a bit busy once we all get to Vegas (assuming I manage to stay out of the hospital this year), and I went to the movies; saw I Am Legend (pretty much sucked except for the special effects), Juno (excellent for a movie featuring characters that don't really exist in real life although you'd want them to) and The Golden Compass (which is so good for kids and adults, I'll be writing about it later) — but before all three of them, I was "treated" to an ad for slacker moviegoers to join the National Guard.
It's a music video from a group named (IIRC) 3 Doors Down called "Citizen Soldier," and it's a near masterpiece of propaganda. Starts with a guy playing football with his pals; cut to a soldier picking up a crushed football from a mud puddle in (presumably) New Orleans; cut to soldiers fighting in Iraq; cut to the Continental Militia (which the National Guard is NOT!!!) fighting the redcoats in the Revolutionary War (note the tricorn hats and the cannon fire and the advancing British soldiers); cut to helicopters flying over the battlefield in Iraq; cut to GI's storming the beach at Normandy in WWII — all with overlaid homilies like, "I WILL ALWAYS PLACE THE MISSION FIRST," "I WILL NEVER QUIT" and "WE ARE FREE BECAUSE OF THE BRAVE." This all goes on, intercutrting and slogans, for a good five minutes.
And I'm sitting there thinking, "What is this horseshit?" For one thing, the National Guard is supposed to be just that: The force that guards the United States when it's under attack or helps out when disaster strikes (like Katrina or those tornadoes that ripped across Kansas last year that the Guard couldn't help with because ... well, you know:). It's not just another bunch of soldiers that the president can send willy-nilly to fight on foreign soil; that was never its mission. And rest assured, if anyone is stupid enough to join the Guard now, that's exactly where they will end up — In Iraq, or maybe Iran or Pakistan (or Venezuela) — because there aren't enough regular soldiers left to prosecute Bush's illegal war.
Sure, "Citizen Soldier" is a snappy tune. So was "Deutschland Uber Alles."