December 1, 2003
@ 12:38 PM

Doc Searles wrote

Britt Blaser is a techblogger who will never be a warblogger because he's been there, done that, and collected a lot more than a t-shirt: namely, three Distinguished Flying Crosses, including one for the legendary Fire Flight at Katum.
  His latest post is Voice of Experience:
  This post will make the most sense for those who have witnessed war and are not freaked out by the cold calculus of accepting death as a constant and the loss of buddies as gut-stirring but as inevitable as taxes. Most of the rest of the world has been forced to experience war first hand. Perhaps that's why the rest of the world is unimpressed with this administration's gung-ho attitude, so typical of raw recruits and so uncharacteristic of adults who've peered into the abyss and lived to describe it..
  I hate to diss fellow bloggers, but the warbloggers seem to have a paucity of combat experience. We would never entertain the views of programmers who've never hacked code, or historians who've never read history. Why would we listen carefully to warbloggers who've never watched tracers arcing toward their position?
  Every warrior knows that perfect safety is a fool's paradise. The premise of the current war on terror is that we can entertain our way out of the terrorist threat. It's entertainment to feel an illusory omnipotence that will hunt down every evil-doer and infidel­a kind of adolescent road rage, really. The old heads in your squadron know to protect such greenhorns from their enthusiasms, at least until they learn or die. "There are old pilots and bold pilots. There are no old, bold pilots."

The more I think about it the more I tend to feel that GW Bush's reelection is in the bag. Posts like the one linked above from Britt Blaser cement this feeling. I deeply suspect that, from the perspective of the average "man on the street" in the US who felt rage at the events of September 11th 2003, the US government has delivered in spades; retribution has been wreaked across two continents with minimal losses to US forces, the message has clearly been sent that if you screw with the US you get burned, and there have been no significant terror attacks on US soil despite several threats from terrorist organizations. This opinion is based on the general sentiments I get from reading open forums were people from diverse backgrounds discuss current affairs such as the Yahoo! Message Boards.

The position of this mythical "man on the street" is very difficut to assail even with well written posts such as that by Britt Blaser. No matter how much one disagrees with the decisions the current US adminsitration has made as part of its "War on Terror" it is hard to argue with the fact that so far it has seemed relatively successful in the ways that are immediately noticeable. The various counter arguments to this position I have seen online usually sound like Britt Blaser's, they tend to argue that the current course of action is wrong but do not provide alternatives or they claim that there will be negative consequences for the current course of actions but none of the consequences are immediate.  These arguments don't hold up well compared to the aforementioned successes of the "War on Terror". If people feel safer, regardless of whether they are actually safer or not then it is hard to convince them otherwise especially when there isn't any concrete way to justify that position one way or the other.  


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