By J.E. McCollough Entering the private sector after military service is rarely...
Douche of the Week: Harry Reid
By Mr. Twisted
We now interrupt our regularly scheduled program of commemorating the 10th anniversary of Operation: Iraqi Freedom to bring you a Douche of the Week special. And as you’ve probably already figured out, for us to depart from this series, something truly douche-tastic must have occurred.
Well, it did, and it came from….a politician.
I know, I know—it’s hard to imagine that a politician would be a douchebag, but it’s true. Even those noble souls who swear an oath of public servitude can disappoint us on occasion. And sometimes the imbecilic behavior can even come from the very top of the food chain. Shocking, I know.
Okay, that was pretty tough to type. So let’s get serious now. Politicians are basically making a habit now of pissing off America in general and the Veteran community in particular. This week it came from none other than Harry Reid—the Senate Majority Leader himself (a position which holds tremendous amounts of power in our current government, by the way).
After an explosion at an ammunition depot in Hawthorne, Nevada left 7 Marines dead, Senator Reid spoke on the Senate floor about how the sequester (you know, that whole failure on behalf of our Congress—the body of which Sen. Reid is a leader) was somehow connected to the deaths of these Marines.
The ever-benevolent and wise Senator stated:
“These men and women, our Marines, were training there in Hawthorne and with the sequester, it’s going to cut this stuff back, and I just hope everyone understands sacrifices made by our military, they are significant.”
Yes, Senator Reid; yes we do understand the sacrifices. And we understand them on a level you never have and never will. Now go choke yourself for assuming differently.
There are several problems here with what Sen. Reid said, not the least of which was the completely inappropriate and shameless use of the recently-deceased to further his own political agenda. The very notion of using dead service members for talking points on the Senate floor is despicable on an epic level, but the sad part is that it goes much deeper and is far more ridiculous as a whole story.
First, stop and consider what the sequester is: automatic, across-the-board cuts to government agencies that were to be put into place if Congress did not come up with a budget that reduced the ridiculous levels of spending they have engaged in for a very long time. A deal was made between Congress and the White House that involved discretionary spending, bondholders, and possibly several head of cattle, a unicorn, and the firstborn of everyone in the military.
Second, understand why we got to the point of sequestration: the United States House of Representatives—the legislative body who is, at least in theory, in charge of writing a budget for the federal government—has passed several budgets and sent them to the Senate. The Senate has subsequently failed to pass a single budget since…..April 29, 2009. This means, in real terms, that they have failed to do their job. This is the equivalent of an Infantryman not shooting any live rounds for four years, or a medic never sticking an IV.
Thirdly, let’s ask ourselves a very simple and basic question: who runs the Senate? Sure, the Senate Majority Leader doesn’t force people to vote one way or another, but the person holding that seat controls a significant amount of what happens within those walls in terms of when laws are heard, which committee hears them, and so on. Suffice to say that, in many regards, the person in that position often has more power than the President of the United States (in some ways this is a good thing—we don’t want a king and our Constitution was written to prevent that very thing).
So, what can we take from these three points? Simply put, our government has overspent for a very long time. They put a safety in place to curb that spending, and have now run into that safety. And now one of the people in one of the most powerful positions that led to this has essentially claimed that military personnel are dying because of it.
This is like a snake eating itself and puking so that it has room to eat more.
Not only did Senator Reid disgracefully besmirch the names of fallen Marines, but he did so by using a financial problem in our government that he had a big hand in creating as a possible cause and a way to gain political points for his agenda. There is low and then there is that. To top it off, Reid has held that position since 2007—so it’s not like he just walked in and was handed this sequester problem.
For any in doubt about the sequester and whether or not it could in fact have led to the tragedy in Nevada, it is helpful to understand that the sequester is not even cutting real spending. The automatic cuts are about cutting growth—meaning that the Pentagon will still technically increase its spending over the next decade, but do so at a slower pace. For Senator Reid to claim that these cuts have led to military personnel being killed means he is either completely lying and doing it for political gain or he is monumentally ignorant of economics 101. My guess is both, based on what we’ve seen out of him in the last few years.
To Mr. Reid: You are a true douchebag and are now hereby given the title of Douche of the Week, which puts you in the running for Douche of the Year—a title to be granted by our panel of expert judges at a later time and after much deliberation (i.e. probably when Nick, Tommy, and Rob are halfway through a bottle of Maker’s Mark). For now, accept this title and the fact that you are not only monumentally stupid but also disrespectful to those who work harder than you do as they deal with cuts in their benefits, all while “calligraphers” at the White House make $200k a year and you continue to become a millionaire in public office.
And this group still does their job better than you do yours. Those elected may not wish to pay proper tribute to your lives and service to our great country, but we do.
RIP Marines – Stand Easy
Pfc. Joshua M. Martino, 19, of Clearfield, Pa.
Lance Cpl. David P. Fenn II, 20, of Polk City, Fla.
Lance Cpl. Roger W. Muchnick Jr., 23, of Fairfield, Conn.
Lance Cpl. Joshua C. Taylor, 21, of Marietta, Ohio
Lance Cpl. Mason J. Vanderwork, 21, of Hickory, N.C.
Lance Cpl. William T. Wild IV, 21, of Anne Arundel, Md.
Cpl. Aaron J. Ripperda, 26, of Madison, Ill.