"Postmodern" really isn't the right word. Rather, the question is whether humans can survive in the post-human world. The post-humans certainly won't defend their world, so they have to rely upon the humans for whom they have so much contempt. But once we run out of humans -- or the humans decide they don't want to fight and die for a bunch of self-obsessed post-humans -- I would think that's the end of the game.Posted by Gagdad Bob at June 23, 2007 11:29 AM
They are there now. Every one a volunteer. The Ashleys, Nicoles and Jasons don't want to see them. I see them.Posted by Roy Lofquist at June 23, 2007 12:33 PM
I read that same chapter (on Midway) in Hanson's book for the first time just a few months ago (March '07)-- I had the same reaction you did. I also read Hanson's chapter on the battle of Lepanto and wondered whether the contemporary West is willing to take on Islam with the same resolve it showed in the 16th century.Posted by Connecticut Yankee at June 23, 2007 12:53 PM
"One wonders if we shall ever see their likes again..."
That's a tough one. Sometimes I think their likes do still exist and they're the ones who get up and go to work every day to take care of their responsibilities and their families.
Then I find myself in the presence of someone under 30, and I watch my hopes and dreams for this nation disappear. Not all, mind you, but damn near most of the young people today have no idea of what it means to sacrifice or show respect. They have no idea that anything greater than themselves exists. Those in the military are the exceptions.
Our fine government hasn't exactly led the way in showing examples of leadership. We're currently in a crisis of the absence of it. If 9/11 wasn't enough to wake us up and make tough decisions, I don't know what it will take short of the death of a city under a mushroom cloud. Given today's appeasement mindset that may not even be enough.Posted by gabrielpicasso at June 23, 2007 1:56 PM
Gagdad Bob's comment regarding "post-human" reminds me of nothing so much as the Eloy, of H.G. Wells "The Time Machine". Is this what we have come to, a pampered people, unable to defend ourselves let alone unable to see the horror decending upon us? When will we awaken indeed!Posted by GM Roper at June 23, 2007 4:14 PM
I know a Jason that is in Iraq right now. Husbund and father of two, he used to work in my office. He had just got discharged and was trying to start his life up. We'd talk about the war and he'd show me some pictures and Iraqi money.
I felt so bad for him as he was on the bottom rung in our office just a delivery guy really. He'd come by at the end of the day and empty our trash cans and I couldn't bear to watch it. I made our Dept. empty their own trash out in the dumpster. He reinlisted after about six months of that stuff.
I read about the surge and I pray for him and his unit. I can't afford therapy.Posted by Ryoushi at June 23, 2007 7:53 PM
Gagdad, Ayn Rand foresaw that the humans would eventually decide not to fight and die for the post-humans. The end of that game looks frighteningly close.Posted by askmom at June 24, 2007 11:21 AM
One issue, and I don't know how much of the problem is due to this, is that according to President Bush we are fighting to bring democracy, liberty and free market capitalism to the people of Iraq and the middle east in hopes of giving them a better life. Making life better for the Japanese was not a goal of the U.S. government or the people of the U.S. during WWII. Yes I understand that the situation is not the same and that the threat we face is much different. Still, many people, including me, ask the question, why should we fight and die to make life better in Baghdad? At this point, the Iraq war is not about the survival of the U.S. and our way of life. The GWOT fits that description better but even in this case there is no standing army that threatens us. After 9/11, President Bush asked the nation to go shopping and we did.Posted by Barnabus at June 24, 2007 3:41 PM
Forgiveness of myself started when I began to understand that guilt was the flip side of the coin of pride. That, and the realization that I had already been forgiven, by a Power greater than me.(Pick your own) I don't think words will ever describe it. As you said, something outside yourself produced a profound change. Here's an example of a very small thing having
an large effect. It's a copy of an email from a shipmate that served with me in the early sixties. He was recently running an errand for his son, injured last year by an IED in Iraq.
Had an amazing thing happen Thursday at Walter Reed. I was walking back from the hospital to the Mologne House after picking up some meds for Ferris and as I got to the back entrance to the hotel I approach the area where some of the soldiers and their "helpers" step out to get a smoke or some fresh air. In any case as I'm walking up the sidewalk there is this young soldier in a wheelchair with both leg amputated. I think one was above the knee (AKA) and the other was below the knee (BKA). I'm wearing an old USS Forrestal ball cap with an EOD crab on it and he looks at the hat and asks if I was on a battleship. I told him no it was an aircraft carrier and he asks if I was in WWII - I guess I'm really showing my age! I chuckle and told him that I wasn't that old and then told him when I went in the Navy and when I retired. Then this kid with no legs looked at me and told me that he "really respected you guys." I couldn't believe it! I told him that I did the easy part and he did the hard part but that was about all I could get out of my mouth as I was lost for words.Posted by Dennis at June 24, 2007 10:22 PM
It is shallow and nearsighted to expect the Nicoles Ashley's and Jason's to react or repsond as the Leslies, Masseys and McCluskeys. Aferall, we created and validated their frame of reference.Posted by Son of a Warrior at June 25, 2007 7:13 AM
One issue, and I don't know how much of the problem is due to this, is that according to President Bush we are fighting to bring democracy, liberty and free market capitalism to the people of Iraq and the middle east
I only wish our government were doing that here in the U.S. Sadly, I see the opposite happening. Right now, the government is becoming the enemy of liberty in the United States. And this is across the board, at all levels of government; from smoking restrictions on private property to the reincarnation of the Fairness Doctrine. Not to mention the TSA making airline travel intolerable for normal Americans, in order to not offend Muslims.Posted by rickl at June 25, 2007 7:26 PM
It seems like, unlike some believe, Science Fiction is our modern mythology, having been robbed of our Christian heritage by poor theologists and rationalistic charlatans we're doomed to live out the futures of Science Fiction, few of which are rosy.
Most of them are much to the tune of 'I Am Legend' or 'There Will Come Soft Rains'.
We have already forgotten them; and they are but decades old. What can be remembered now?Posted by RiverCocytus at June 27, 2007 1:07 PM