As those who know me best know well, I’m a kvetcher. In other words, I like to complain. Complaining doesn’t necessarily mean I’m unhappy; it may well mean that I’m engaging in something that is pleasurable in itself. My goal when I complain during a conversation is to be amusing — sort of like Joan Rivers, except without being vulgar, vapid or gossipy. I never lose sight of the fact that, with a few exceptions, my life is pretty damn good, and that my complaints are more decorative than real.
Some people, though, have legitimate gripes, and at Si Vis Pacem, Para Bellum, written by a milblogger serving in Iraq, you get an earful of the really irritating things that can drive an active duty guy (or gal) crazy. These gripes range from on-the-job irritants (such as pettifogging bureaucrats and bosses who don’t recognize your abilities) to more global concerns, such as politicians (Democratic) who make insane demands merely to posture before the camera:
I am tired of the Democrats whining for months on T.V., in the New York Times, and in the House and Senate that we need more troops to win the war in Iraq, and then when my Commander in Chief plans to do just that, they say that is the wrong plan, it won’t work, and we need a “new direction.”
I am tired of every Battalion Sergeant Major and Command Sergeant Major I see over here being more concerned about whether or not I am wearing my uniform in the “spot on,” most garrison-like manner; instead of asking me whether or not I am getting the equipment I need to win the fight, the support I need from my chain of command, or if the chow tastes good.
I am tired of CNN claiming that they are showing “news,” with videotape sent to them by terrorists, of my comrades being shot at by snipers, but refusing to show what happens when we build a school, pave a road, hand out food and water to children, or open a water treatment plant.
I am tired of following the enemy with drones that have cameras, and then dropping bombs that sometimes kill civilians; because we could do a better job of killing the right people by sending a man with a high powered rifle instead.
Read the rest here. I’m not going to quit my whining (it is, after all, my hobby), but I certainly am going to hold tight to the thought that I have little to whine about.