The Council Has Spoken!! This Week’s Watcher’s Council Results – 06/01/12

The Watcher’s Council

The Council has spoken, the votes have been cast and the results are in for this week’s Watcher’s Council match-up.

Memorial Day just passed and aside from America’s remembering its fallen warriors, it also marks the time when America’s electorate starts really paying attention and tuning in to the choice at hand during election years. As such, it also tends to bring out some interesting reactions from America’s pundits and public figures.

This weeks winner, Joshuapundit’s Memorial Day: An Honest Man Versus A Liar, looks at two such reactions that attracted a certain amount attention and compares them. Here’s a slice:

A big story over the Memorial Day weekend concerned one Chris Hayes, a commentator over at MSNBC who celebrated Memorial Day by announcing how uncomfortable he was with referring to our fallen warriors as heroes.

CHRIS HAYES: Thinking today and observing Memorial Day, that’ll be happening tomorrow. Just talked with Lt. Col. Steve Burke, who was a casualty officer with the Marines and had to tell people [inaudible]. Um, I, I, ah, [Steve] Beck, sorry, um, I think it’s interesting because I think it is very difficult to talk about the war dead and the fallen without invoking valor, without invoking the words “heroes.” Um, and, ah, ah, why do I feel so comfortable [sic] about the word “hero”? I feel comfortable, ah, uncomfortable, about the word because it seems to me that it is so rhetorically proximate to justifications for more war. Um, and, I don’t want to obviously desecrate or disrespect memory of anyone that’s fallen, and obviously there are individual circumstances in which there is genuine, tremendous heroism: hail of gunfire, rescuing fellow soldiers and things like that. But it seems to me that we marshal this word in a way that is problematic. But maybe I’m wrong about that.

This sounds like the sort of double talking faux intellectual rap nerdy poli sci majors use to try and get credulous freshman girls out of their panties at an Obama after party once a few joints have made the rounds.

Nevertheless, I have to give Mr. Hayes credit.

The fact is, most self-styled progressives hate and despise the military.Oh, they’ll pay lip service to ‘supporting the troops’ because, you know, it sounds patriotic and provides them a figleaf, but the attitude is fairly obvious. To people like Chris Hayes, the people that go into the military are suckers and dupes, and more than one of his comrades on the left have shown that this is exactly how they see it…especially when they think no one’s listening too closely.

Hayes, one of the editors of the left-wing fringe magazine The Nation was simply being honest, and I commend him for that.

Far less commendable were his efforts to walk things back once he came under fire from the Veterans of Foreign Wars and blogs on the right side of the fence. But then, the species is not noted for its courage.

Even more interesting were the attempts to defend Chris Hayes remarks from the left, most of them again using the usual sophistry to question whether the term ‘heroes’ is appropriate.

Let’s examine something.

At the present time, we have a volunteer military. What that means is that some young men in our society made a choice to restrict their own freedom and risk their lives to defend the rest of us..including the Chris Hayes’s of the country. Whether they actually see combat or not, there’s a degree of selflessness and honor in doing so that can only be characterized as heroic. And there’s always the chance, even in peace time or behind the lines that things can go horribly wrong.

There’s more about the honest man… but you’ll have to click on the link and read on to see whom the liar was.

In our non-Council category, the winner was the one and only Mark Steyn with a killer piece, The Facebook Caliphate submitted by The Noisy Room. It concerns the Islamist takeovers in Egypt and elsewhere and why the West is so mistaken about what’s going on there. This piece contains one of the truest things I’ve seen written anywhere about the conflict we’re engaged in:

One of the basic defects of the Bush administration’s designation of a “war on terror” was that it emphasized symptoms (bombs and bombers) over causes (the underlying ideology). In the war of ideas, the West has chosen not to compete, under the erroneous assumption that the ever more refined delivery systems for its sensual distractions are a Big Idea in and of themselves. They’re not.

Here are this week’s full results. The Mellow Jihadi and New Zeal was unable to vote this week, but neither was affected by the 2/3 vote penalty:

Council Winners

Non-Council Winners

See you next week! Remember to tune in for the Watcher’s Forum Question on Monday. And don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and Twitter… ’cause we’re cool like that!


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