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The Plan for Universal Service

Rahm Emmanuel talks about the plan for Universal Service.

There are certainly aspects of this which are decidedly fascist. I mean this kind of fascist, not this kind of fascist.  We have seen this before:

“CCCers… wore World War I uniforms; were transported around the country by troop trains; answered to army sergeants; march[ed] in formation… went to bed in army tents listening to taps; woke to reveille.”

These must be resisted, because they are bad ideas, that are ill suited to a nation such as ours. We do not need a new “New Deal.” I took some criticism yesterday for pooh poohing the comparison to the Nazis, but I will still stand by it. The people who are proposing this crap because they are misguided, and infatuated by their own ideas and intellect. I don’t believe these people, least of all Emmanuel, is looking to march us off to the ovens, or create a police state. They might be unwittingly laying the groundwork for something much worse, and I think that needs to be pointed out.  But we must be careful in trying to hang the swastika or the fasces on our opponents necks.

I agree with Jonah Goldberg’s proposition that our political opponents share intellectual roots with the fascist ideology, but that they are not evil, they are wrong, and dangerously misguided.  If Obama puts Bill Ayers or Bernadine Dohrn in charge of his service initiatives, then I might change my mind, but for now, all the evidence points to Obama being a solidly naive progressive, within the framework that they’ve existed within in this country for most of the 20th century.  That doesn’t mean our opposition should be any less intense, but we’re not fighting Nazis.

It’s worth remembering that the very people who created the Civilian Conservation Corps, and the National Recovery Administration, also fought a costly and difficult war against the worst horrors that fascist ideology has to offer.  We must fight what is coming, but I think we also need to be wary of strained hyperbole, which not only weaken our arguments in the public eye, but also obscure the sheer horror of what Nazism and Facism actually are.

21 Responses to “The Plan for Universal Service”

  1. Matt says:

    What Rahm Emmanuel is saying is what Israel has already done. Which is that Everbody must do Military Service.

  2. mostlygenius says:

    The CCC was a voluntary service. I don’t have a problem with service, I have a problem with conscription. As soon as a system is not voluntary it is a form of slavery. If there is a slippery slope to gun control isn’t there a slippery slope to the conscription of citizens?

    The moral issue aside, conscripts are people who would rather be doing something else, so they do the job in front of them poorly.

  3. Sebastian says:

    I agree, but what if they tie it to obtaining government loans? I agree that outright national service, aside from military service, is a violation of the 13th amendment.

  4. Navy Vet from Jersey says:

    Sebastian,

    What, do you really think Barry boy and his Obamunist drones actually give a rip about what any part of the US Constitution says?

    We now have a president-elect who said just seven years ago during a radio interview that our US Constitution is “fundamentally flawed” because it did not address the issue of “wealth redistribution”. If this type of mentality is not one of a committed socialist and/or communist, then I dare anyone to tell me what would be.

  5. Sebastian says:

    In their heart of hearts, no. But they are politicians, and there’s only so far they can follow their hearts without risking jilting the electorate. But who knows. Perhaps they are suicidal.

  6. illspirit says:

    They may not be Nazis, but technocratic control freaks are just as scary. Taken one at a time, their proposals don’t “create a police state,” but the larger pattern is disconcerting.

    Exibit 438764369836: National “congestion charges.”

    http://www.thenewspaper.com/news/25/2594.asp

    I don’t care how they spin it, “congestion charges” essentially amount to buying permits to enter (or leave..) certain areas. Yea, they might be shall-issue, at least at first, but then there’s still the whole tracking your movements thing. Whether this is an automated network of EZ Pass type things, or printed passes/stickers bought in advance, it has a “papers, please” ring to it.

    And how will the mileage tax work? Federal odometer inspectors (maybe that’s part of what the million man “security force” will do)? Or perhaps GPS black boxes?

    Granted, you could still use mass transit and such to get around, but bus/train stations and airports are pretty much Fourth Amendment Free zones now.

  7. georgeh says:

    Not Nazi?
    Will it really matter after they have marched all our children off to labor camps every summer and spent the evenings indoctrinating them?

  8. Tom says:

    IF there was anything to this other then a hitler youth program it wouldn’t be compulsory and would be open to ALL people. Like everything else “government”, it’s all about control.

    Free military training for the gang bangers, domestic terrorists like PETA and their ilk, for those with 13 years of government indoctrination…what could POSSIBLY go wrong? For the record I’ll guess the age will be either 18 or 22, right outta highschool or college. I’d lean towards the 18 age for financial, educational, and other reasons.

    Compulsory means some are likely to rebel against it, so at least there’s that.

  9. Tom says:

    Here’s something I couldn’t find while typing up my above comment.

    Seems rather appropriate

    http://www.lewrockwell.com/orig4/harris-sharon1.html

  10. travis bickle says:

    This whole notion that we have a “duty” to our country really pisses me off.

    If my kids don’t want to participate, I will stop at nothing- NOTHING- to keep them from being forced into “service”. And I don’t care if that sounded like a threat, because I truly mean what I say.

  11. Sounds like three months of liberal indoctrination. I have a suggestion for Emanuel’s group; Obama Youth. their uniform can be khaki shorts and a shirt and they can raise the arm high to salute the fuhrer, I mean president.

    http://gonegunrights.blogspot.com/

  12. mariner says:

    I don’t really care whether the people proposing this are evil or misguided. Either way, their proposals are very, very dangerous and we must stop them from being enacted.

    Let’s concentrate on opposing them, instead of insisting that everyone who opposes them uses only words you approve of.

  13. Sebastian says:

    Well said Mariner.

  14. Nylarthotep says:

    Some basics for argument against this need to be further outlined.
    What will this cost?
    Who makes up what the training is?
    What review of the indoctrination will there be?
    What about those conscripts who fall under the American’s with Disabilities act, how will they be dealt with?
    Can one be a conscientious objector? How will they treat objectors?
    What civil rights do conscripts have? Are they identical to the military? What laws apply to them?
    What do you do with conscripts with violent criminal records?
    Once trained, what obligations are forced on the individuals? Do they have to report for service in a national emergency?

    No doubt there are many more questions that could be asked and the unacceptable answers defined.

    The other thing to think about is how to subvert this effort should it become reality.

    How would dissent be dealt with by the indoctrinators? Does the 3-4 months of “service” get you something that you need in the future? Could a strong dissent twist such a training to become it’s opposite?

  15. Some basics for argument against this need to be further outlined.
    What will this cost?
    Who makes up what the training is?
    What review of the indoctrination will there be?
    What about those conscripts who fall under the American’s with Disabilities act, how will they be dealt with?
    Can one be a conscientious objector? How will they treat objectors?
    What civil rights do conscripts have? Are they identical to the military? What laws apply to them?
    What do you do with conscripts with violent criminal records?
    Once trained, what obligations are forced on the individuals? Do they have to report for service in a national emergency?

    None of that matters. What matters is that this precedent be not established. Once it can be done for some reason, it can eventually be done for any reason.

    I have two sons. I say this: Never.

    My life, my fortune, my sacred honor. Such as they are.

    III

  16. ka says:

    “Will it really matter after they have marched all our children off to labor camps every summer and spent the evenings indoctrinating them?”

    So this is a way of picking up the homeschoolers who “missed out” on all that indoctrination, eh?

    What I can’t figure out is from the video Emmanuel says that those trained will respond in the case of terrorist attacks or natural disasters. Does that mean after 10 years or so of this program we shouldn’t rely on the Government to save us any more? Also, if all those great people can save us during disasters, can they also finally be trusted to save us from the holdup guy at 7-11?

  17. DirtCrashr says:

    We found through our Vietnam experience, that in a country of this size and demographic variability — from Location to Education — the notion that everybody MUST-DO military service was really a bad idea and imposed a lot of limitations and difficulties on our Military.
    Even with the volunteer corps who compose our present branches of service, among people who ostensibly WANT to be participating, there is still a huge and time consuming educational and training drain just by itself.
    It’s a lousy idea and doing it simply as a means of instituting some kind of “solidarity” or “patriotic” message or psychological alignment is actually a poor reason for so doing.

  18. Nylarthotep says:

    @ Oldsmoblogger

    It doesn’t matter? Right. Hide your head in the sand. People with some attachment to reality make contingency plans. Asking such questions when the opposition is trying to enact this would also be helpful in defeating such a plan.

    But hey, You go on with your screaching and don’t bother preparing for the fight.

  19. Nyarlathotep–I guess I need to use small words for you.

    What it costs does not matter.

    Review of the indoctrination does not matter.

    Special treatment for conscientious objectors Does. Not. Matter.

    What matters is that the idea is immoral on its face, whatever the details are. This must not happen. There are no “good answers” to those questions that would make it okay.

    It wouldn’t be okay if Ron Paul or George Frakking Washington wanted to do it.

    That’s the point.

  20. Sebastian says:

    I don’t think Oldsmoblogger is someone you could argue isn’t preparing for a fight :)

  21. To be sure, Sebastian, it’s the next to last thing I want (that last thing would be subjection), but I fear it’s one of those “politics is interested in you” things.

    Hope — and work — for the best, be ready for the worst. ;-)

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