Thursday, January 03, 2008
Military Speaks About Bush Administration
by: Brandon Friedman
Fri Dec 07, 2007 at 01:20:21 AM EST
| Way back in the day, many of us voted for George W. Bush. Personally, I cast that fateful vote for him in 2000--when I was 22 years old, and just over a month away from being commissioned as an Army officer. I figured I was doing my duty. I thought that Republicans supported the military. |
But I didn't make the same mistake in 2004. After one deployment to Afghanistan and another to Iraq, I'd finally learned my lesson.
But some of us who've served in Iraq, like former Marine Kent Fletcher, took longer to see the light. An active member of VoteVets, Kent only turned on the Bush administration in 2006. In an article today, Bloomberg covered Kent's transition from being vehemently pro-Bush administration, to being one of its harshest critics. Along with new poll data, the article uses Kent as a case study to examine how military families' support for the Bush administration has eroded throughout the course of the war.
The lesson of the Bloomberg piece is this: On a long enough timeline (and despite what they say), the Bush administration will piss off and alienate every single living member of the United States military and every single living member of their families.
Details below. . . .
|Brandon Friedman :: What Military Families Think of the Bush Administration|
|The Bloomberg piece, written by Christopher Stern, is based on a Bloomberg/Los Angeles Times poll of active-duty military, veterans and their families. The pollsters found what we in this community already know: Bush administration policies have been disastrous for the U.S. military. Here are some of the highlights: |
Among active-duty military, veterans and their families, only 36 percent say it was worth going to war in Iraq. This compares with an Annenberg survey taken in 2004, one year after the invasion, which showed that 64 percent of service members and their families supported the war.
64 percent down to 36 percent--and this is after the surge. This is called "cratering." As in, military families' support for the Iraq War is "cratering."
The poll conducted Nov. 30-Dec. 3 also finds that 37 percent of military-family members approve of the job Bush is doing as president, a little more than the general population. The 2004 poll by the University of Pennsylvania's Annenberg School of Communications in Philadelphia found that twice as many military families approved of Bush's performance.
No surprise there.
The same trend holds true on the question of the treatment of active-duty military, veterans and their families. The poll finds that only 29 percent of all poll respondents say they believe the Bush administration is doing a good job handling those needs. Among military families, who directly benefit from those programs, 35 percent say the administration is doing a good job.
Translated: Two out of three military families think the Bush administration treats them poorly. Big surprise? No.
At the same time, a plurality of military-family members, 39 percent, say they believe Democrats are likely to do a better job handling those issues, compared with 35 percent for Republicans.
Think about that for a second. More military family members think Democrats are better at handling military issues than Republicans. My question is this: How absolutely fucked up as an administration do you have to be to create a situation like that in the wake of 9/11?
The answer? Pretty fucked up, I guess. I mean, these guys have turned an ardently pro-Republican military into a huge bloc of Democratic voters.
In 2005, Fletcher, the Marine who switched party affiliations, published an editorial in the Huntington, West Virginia Herald-Dispatch newspaper scolding critics of Bush, who he said were also insulting the U.S. fighting forces.
I'd like to hear everyone's thoughts on this. And I'd love to hear from any Bush administration-supporting troops or veterans who are lurking here. I'd be interested to hear why you're holding out. Seriously.
|Tags: VoteVets, Los Angeles Times, Bloomberg, Kent Fletcher, George W. Bush, (All Tags)|
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"I think that people want peace so much that one of these days government had better get out of their way and let them have it." Dwight D. Eisenhower
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