I’ve never once made any bones about the fact that I spent eight years as a U.S. Navy officer because it seemed like a cool and fun thing to do. It was. I never once regretted it (quite the contrary). It was a job. I signed a contract. I performed on that contract and was paid (well) for my services.
Truth be told: I have always felt as though I got the better end of the deal.
And you know what? If military service isn’t your thing, then by all means stay as far away as you can. The flag-waving patriotic bullshit is bullshit. "Serve your country?" Fuck that. Do your fuckin’ job; do it well, or keep the eff out. If working in the military isn’t something you can respect and be enthusiastic about qua JOB, then "service to society" becomes for you an insolent and miserable self-sacrifice likely motivated by guilt you haven’t a good reason in the world to harbor.
All this to preface a letter by Donald Bourdreaux to the Washington Times responding to this Op-Ed piece. Since it’s buried in an archive, I’ll post the whole thing.
Brendan Conway is charmed by Philip
Gold’s notion that every American male "should spend some time in
uniform as a normal part of life and of citizenship" ("Selective
service," Feb. 6). I’m not so charmed.
Society remains primitive insofar as
individuals are regarded as agents to butcher for – and to be butchered
for – the collective. Society progresses only as the depraved romance
of the collective gives way to respect for the individual – the
individual whose life and property are never regarded as being at the
disposal of the state.
Donald J. Boudreaux
Chairman, Department of Economics
George Mason University