Real men — and the babyish guys in Hollywood movies

As you all know, over the years I’ve been fascinated by male and female roles in America.  As the mother of a very manly little 10 year old, I take male role models in this culture very seriously.  I’ve therefore noticed (and commented upon) the way in which our society consigns boys to perpetual adolescence.  Just walk down the streets, and you’ll see teen girls dressed like hookers (tight, skimpy clothes) and teen boys dressed like babies (backwards hats, falling down pants, unlaced shoes).

Hollywood is an important part of the way in which American man are infantilized.  I’ve written about this subject twice at American ThinkerIn one article, I looked at two movies with two very different messages about men:  Brokeback Mountain and The Lion, The Witch and the WardrobeIn the other, written during the primaries, I looked at manliness in pop culture generally and in the primaries specifically.

If you’ll pardon me quoting myself, in my article from the primaries, I looked back on movie males during Hollywood’s golden era and compared them to our current crop of stars:

Any analysis of American pop culture has to start in Hollywood.  If we enter the Wayback Machine, we can see that, before and during World War II, Hollywood’s male stars were grown-ups (at least on the screen).  There was nothing immature or adolescent in the screen presence of such great stars as Clark Gable, John Wayne, Humphrey Bogart, Joseph Cotten, Joel McCrea, or Walter Pidgeon, to name but a few.  These were men’s men, with strong faces and deep voices.

When the war started, the most boyish of Hollywood’s hot stars, Jimmy Stewart, ditched Hollywood entirely to serve in the war himself, which he did with extraordinary distinctionMickey Rooney, another boyish actor, also did his bit.  Nor were these two alone in abandoning the world of pretend war on the silver screen in order actually to participate in the real war.  Clark Gable, Henry Fonda, William Holden, Gene Autry, Robert Montgomery, David Niven, and a host of others enlisted.  (Ronald Reagan did too, but a hearing problem, combined with the military’s pressing need for morale boosting films, kept him on the home front, something that dogged him politically in later years.)

Today’s Hollywood stars, even when they take on testosterone packed action roles, never seem to rise above boyishness.  Go ahead – take a look at modern such screen luminaries as Brad Pitt, Leonardo DiCaprio, Orlando Bloom, or Ben Affleck.  All of them are distinguished by their chipmunk cheeks and teen heartthrob attractiveness.  The same holds true for the older, post-adolescent actors.  Whether you’re watching an increasingly wrinkled, although still quite charming, Hugh Grant; Tom Cruise with his shark-like grin;  or a goofy Adam Sandler, they all get by playing men who, for the bulk of any given movie, can barely seem to grow up.  Even George Clooney, who boasts old-fashioned silver hair and a gravely voice, shies away from emotionally adult roles, both on and off the screen.  With this type of competition, it’s small surprise that Daniel Craig has proven to be such a popular James Bond.  While his physical attractions elude me, there’s no doubt that he’s the first craggy-cheeked man to play James Bond since Sean Connery made the role.

I’m not the only one paying attention to this trend.  At Pajamas Media, Andrew Klavan has also noticed the perpetual state of immaturity that characterizes guys in way too many movies:

The guys are all children whose manhood consists exclusively in hell-raising.  The women are either fun-loving party girls or grim, death-of-pleasure wife/mommies who seem ever ready to take their little menchildren by the ears and force them to wash the dishes while they stand by wagging their fingers.  These dames remind me of  a wonderful line in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s Tender is the Night about “the American woman, aroused”  whose “clean-sweeping irrational temper… had broken the moral back of a race and made a nursery out of a continent.”

A lot of critics get all huffy about this depiction of the sexes – read the silly little fellow who wrote the review in the New York Times by way of example.  The standard line seems to be to blame it all on childish filmmakers pandering to adolescent audiences.  But you know what?  I suspect a lot of it is simple realism.  More and more often I meet young guys just like this:  overgrown kids who are their grim wives’ poodles.  They sheepishly talk about getting a “pink pass,” or a “kitchen pass,” before they can leave the house.  They can’t do this or that because their wives don’t like it.  They “share” household and child-rearing tasks equally – which isn’t really equal at all because they don’t care about a clean house or a well-reared child anywhere near as much as their wives do.  In short, each one seems set to spend his life taking orders from a perpetually dissatisfied Mrs. who sounds to me – forgive me but just speaking in all honesty – like a bloody shrike.  Who can blame these poor shnooks if they go out and get drunk or laid or just plain divorced?

It’s easy just to pass this off as meaningless pop culture, but there’s something deeper going on.  Our culture is becoming feminized.  Women now make up the majority of college graduates, and one could easily call this recession the “men’s recession,” since they’re the ones who have been hardest hit.  That hit will resonate in the home.  While Mom is still going out and earning a living, Dad sits there, unemployed and unemployable.

I’m not sure what can be done about this problem.  I’m certainly not advocating a return to some troglodyte time of brutal cave men and repressed women.  We don’t need to live as they do in Saudi Arabia.  But the pendulum has swung to far and it would be good for American society if it stopped swinging so wildly in the feminine directing and started trending back to a happy-ish medium.

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  • Mike Devx

    Let me tie this in, if you’ll allow me, to President Obama.

    Go to google, type in the words Obama Egypt Sphinx and hit Enter.
    When the google search results display, click on “Images” in the top left menu.

    You will see pictures of Obama taken during his visit to Egypt to give his speech.

    Does this man look like the masculine type Book is lauding, or like the chipmunk-cheeked womanish boys that rule our cultural milieu? It’s not just that he’s young, it’s that he has abandoned all gravitas. This is the President as high school jock struttin’ his stuff, not the President as visiting dignitary.

    Here are two of the images you can find via the search process I described above.
    (More than two links puts us in moderation hell…)


  • nathan

    Bowing before the Saudi king says it all.

  • 11B40


    For me the initial triumph of the feminization of males was when the Congress repealed the military draft. When a society goes on record to say that it is no longer the responsibility of its menfolk to protect it, the emasculation project is in full swing. You can’t discount 10,000 years of human history without incurring some type of penalty. Even now, after eight years of war, our politicians keep their heads buried in the sand and ignore the failure of our “volunteer” military. (Here, I refer to the policy, not the actual efforts of our military.) All the stories about the stresses that multiple tours in the Iraq sandbox placed on our military, no one stood up to shout that we need a return to the draft. Even within the military, its only the 10-15% female troops that kept the “volunteer” policy (idiocy?) going. And the price that went along with it is the feminization of the military via political correctness, sexual harassment restrictions, and rules of engagement.

    As much as I don’t disagree with the article’s premise, I would also like to add that this feminization of males also fits well with F.A.Hayek’s argument in his “The Road to Serfdom”. The servile state that he both predicts and warns against has no real need for any large quantity of “alpha” males. The socialist state is looking for citizens who will follow its dictates completely and directly, you know, like serfs.

  • Charles Martel

    I finally got around to watching Clint Eastwood’s “Gran Torino,” and I have to say how refreshing it was to see a very manly character who, despite his supposed racism, actually judges people by their character. There’s one scene where he rescues a neighbor girl, a Hmong, and her whigger suitor from three menacing black punks who intend to have their way with her.

    Clint’s character faces them down, steely and unmoved by any effeminate need to be liked by the black boys or to try to understand their vile way of existing. But what really stuck in my mind was his sharp words for the boyfriend, a silly white kid who thought he could gesture and “Hey, Bro” his way through a bad encounter. The kid wilts immediately in the face of the thugs and leaves the girl’s defense to her.

    Eastwood calls the kid a “pussy” for shirking his duty to defend his girl, and deservedly so. The punk thought that if he showed his respect for the thugs by imitating them (the sincerest form of flattery, no?), he could dissuade them.

    So, as I was watching a scene that takes place in Detroit, I found myself thinking of a NBOTUS (Nancy Boy of the United States) in Cairo who recently tried to disarm hostile Islamic a**holes by intoning “Hey, Bro,” and “Peace be upon him.”

    We are paying dearly for our loss of masculinity. 11B40 is correct to say that the state that The One envisions will thrive best if men check their balls at the door.

  • Jewel

    It isn’t just that the men are ‘boyish’, if you can call them that. It’s worse than that. Listen to how men these days speak. Like a bunch of preteen girls. It is sickening to hear that girlish whining coming out of the yaps of men who are supposed to be adult.
    They used to teach penmanship. They used to teach etiquette. They used to teach proper diction.
    Whither all?

  • Ymarsakar

    The military was cut down by a couple of divisions in the Clinton years. And that wasn’t due to the elimination of the draft, that was just the redistribution of funds from the common defense, which benefits everyone, to federal programs, which benefit a select group.

  • Midwest Chick

    It starts in grade school now. Masculine behaviors, roughhousing, tag, etc. are put down with discipline and drugs. The attitude of ‘benign disdain’ for men pervades our society (really watch a Home Depot or Lowes Home Improvement commercial sometime).

    I think that Kim du Toit, on his now inactive blog said it best in his essay entitled “The Pussification of the Western Male”.

    Men have to be so defensive about their actions that it’s difficult for them to act as they should (as real men) in society now.

  • Jose

    Today’s young men, unfortunately, have little access to traditional masculine pursuits. The combination of urbanization, computers, air conditioning, and advertising has turned them all into consumers who leave the house only to go shopping.

    My Father, on the other hand, was a product of the depression in an area where the men all farmed or mined coal. The only media figure he has ever expressed admiration for was Wallace Beery.

  • 11B40

    Greetings: especially “Midwest Chick”

    If I may expand a bit on part of your comment.

    I have a little thought experiment that I would recommend you all try. When next you settle in for a evening’s worth of TV, try keeping track of the following character types and their antitheses: 1) Stupid White Guys (SWGs); 2) Ass-Kicking Women (AKWs); and, Obviously Superior Minorities (OSMs).

    (N.B: My definition of AKW includes both the physical and the rhetorical. Not much offense intended.)

    My contention is that these “archetypes” have been and continue to be foisted upon the TV viewing public for at least a couple of decades. That means that a whole generation of white males have grown up exposed to this subliminal propaganda. If you follow the logic of it’s important for minorities to have “role models” on TV that they can relate to, then what’s the message that’s being sent to white males? In my assessment, it’s that buffoonery is your current major contribution to society.

  • Mike Devx

    Charles M #4
    >> So, as I was watching a scene that takes place in Detroit, I found myself thinking of a NBOTUS (Nancy Boy of the United States) in Cairo who recently tried to disarm hostile Islamic a**holes by intoning “Hey, Bro,” and “Peace be upon him.”

    Charles, your comparison and conclusion are completely appropriate. And completely damning to Obama.

    I’d made comments on other Bookposts about:
    – Obama referenced ‘the Holy Koran’ three times in his Cairo speech. Has he ever mentioned ‘the Holy Bible’? What we get from Obama is that we are bitterly clinging to our guns and our Bibles. Has he ever accused any Muslims of clinging to their guns, bombs, and Korans?
    – When Obama in the Cairo speech referenced the spiritual meeting, to pray, of Moses, Jesus, and Mohammed (may peace be unto them), he placed the Christian Savior at exactly the same level as Moses and Mohammed: as Allah’s prophets, which Islam dictates, and nothing more. Such a thing could never be said by a believing Christian. Furthermore the phrase “may peace be unto them” is purely of Islamic origin when used in this manner.

    That is why I say Charles’ conclusion is absolutely airtight. Obama went out of his way to do the “Hey bro” treatment, just like the worthless, cowardly “dude” in Gran Torino. Clint Eastwood was spot on in calling that craven coward a pussy. I think we can make the same judgment about Obama.

    Brilliant, Charles!

  • Libby

    Not only have movie men fared worse, look at the women. We’re now stuck with neurotic women well into their 40’s behaving like recent college grads – single, self-centered, obsessed with appearance, hyper-opinionated (with no sign of any of the wisdom that comes with failure and/or tough times) etc. They may now have high-powered jobs and money, but their personal lives are a self-inflicted mess. I’ll take Katherine Hepburn, Audrey Hepburn, Lauren Becall, and Doris Day over the immature Renee Zellweger, Jennifer Anniston, Kate Hudson, Cameron Diaz, Sarah Jessica Parker, etc. Their movie persona’s are anything but empowered.

  • 11B40

    Greetings: especially “Ymarsakar”

    The reason I attach such importance to the repeal of the military draft is that I see the draft as coming at an important time in a young man’s development. Simply put, it’s an socially acceptable way to get the young sir out of mommy’s and daddy’s house and somewhat out on his own. The military would keep him busy (and as my father used to prefer, tired), teach him some skills, expose him to some forms of deprivation, put some money in his pockets, all under some level of adult supervision. The military would, more importantly these days, provide the opportunity for our young men to get in touch with their patriotism which I believe is being subtly, and not so subtly, eradicated by our educational institutions.

    I can still remember the welcoming speech my first First Sergeant gave when I joined my initial training company. He basically said, “While you’re in this company, I will be your mother. The Captain will be your father. And, we are not married, so you know what that makes you all.” Bottom line, I guess that I see the military draft as our society’s best chance to save a large percentage of our young man and their masculinity.

  • Mike Devx

    11B40 in #9 is spot on as well.

    I’d like to expand on what 11B40 said. Not only are those archetypes important in the constant barrage of subliminal messaging, but it’s the comparisons that surround them that are important, too.

    11B40’s thought experiment is easy and worthwhile. If you want to make it more complex, let me recommend tracking these as well – extensions to 11B40’s categories.

    1. SWGs (Stupid White Guys) that are in the company of WWTASTT (White Women That Are Smarter Than Them). In this way, Al Bundy wouldn’t count, because Meg (correct name?) is just as dumb as he is.

    2. AKWs (Ass-Kicking Women) that are in the company of MWAWTT (Men Who Are Weaker Than Them)

    3. OSMs (Obviously Superior Minorities) that are in the company of WMWOATT (White Men Who Are Inferior To Them)

    If you track these comparisons to 11B40’s core categories, you’ll really see the bias jump out.

    Then keep track of the reverse of each of those as follows!

    4. SWWs (Stupid White Women) that are in the company of WMTASTT (White Men That Are Smarter Than Them).

    5. AKMs (Ass-Kicking Men) that are in the company of WWAWTT (Women Who Are Weaker Than Them)

    6. OSWMs (Obviously Superior White Men) that are in the company of MWOATT (Minorities Who Are Inferior To Them)

    I bet you end up with absolutely ZERO entries in each of these last three categories.

    11B40 is absolutely right about the cultural messages inundating us.

  • suek

    Heh. We watch a lot of NCIS – though we’ve about seen them all. Still some problems, but the above doesn’t apply so much. We watched “The Unit” for a while, but the effort to include the wives and the characterization of them was so offensive that I just couldn’t handle it after a bit. Our TV viewing is getting more and more limited. Our TV set is old, and probably isn’t going to last much longer…I’ve started thinking about whether we’ll replace it or not. There really doesn’t seem to be much point. Although we did discover another goody this week “History Detectives”. Not exactly high on thrill and suspense level, but interesting and apolitical. Well…still…this last week had two historians – a female and a black male (third one was a white male – looks like 20 minute bites, more or less). The female historian was a neutral one – women have been historians for a _long_ time. But as I watched the black male, since the investigation took place on an island off a southern coast (Cat Island), it was interesting to see the interactions between him and the individuals he had contact with while proceeding in the investigation. Very equal to equal. Race was simply not a factor – they were just people doing jobs. That was a good thing…

    I’ve started counting blacks in commercials as opposed to whites. It’s also interesting to note that in all the “male enhancement” ads, the males are primarily in their late 50s or older, but it appears that their wives are 30s to 40s. They could solve their problem by marrying their age equals.

    11B40 – you raise a point that my husband and I debate periodically. I agree with you on the benefit of a mandatory draft to society, but as he points out, the military is not a social service. He had to deal with draftees in the 60s-70s, and considers it a major drag on military functioning. I can’t argue that. Certainly the morale of the military during that period as compared to the morale today is so noteworthy as to be unquestionable. Also, can you imagine how long it would be before Congress got involved because some of their voters back home didn’t like the way their “babies” got treated? Would you also draft women?

  • suek

    Oh yeah…and why do all those couples sit in separate bathtubs out in weird places? Do you suppose _that_ could be a part of their “problem”?

  • iconoclast

    When a woman gets married, she begins striving to establish control over her husband. Much like a rancher would try to break in a new colt. (Maybe this has something to do with the female fascination with horses.) This has always happened.

    Men, of course, resist the control, and eventually a balance has usually been established. In western societies, men have been far more willing to accept female control than in other parts of the world//this is partly due to the christian concept of chivalry and to similar concepts in Judaism.

    In recent years, things have gotten totally out of balance as men have been told that any resistance on their part is immoral and women have been urged by the society to exalt themselves at whatever cost to their husbands.

    What happens is that instead of only breaking her husband to her will, the wife breaks his spirit. So instead of getting a thoroughbred, she gets a broken-down cart horse. And she is angry about it. Angry and contemptuous. And sexually frustrated since she can’t be attracted to a man she feels contempt for.

    This doesn’t always happen of course//may not even happen in the majority of cases//but it happens an awful lot.

  • DCrockett

    Congradulations on cutting out (off?) Klavan’s juvenile perspective on the relationship between marriage and male interests. Your readers should review Klavan’s views on marriage (outlined in the essay linked above) and then decide if his thoughts on anything deserve more than the “attaboy” you might give a youth who lacks an adult conception of how the world works.

  • Bookworm

    DCrockett, you’re right that Klavan believes in traditional marriage, with the man in charge. That can be a very happy marriage provided that the man deeply respects the woman and her role. Indeed, I wrote a post on precisely this subject. Since Klavan claims his wife his happy, I’m assuming that he’s not a stone age brute, but is a manly man who fulfills his role, and celebrates his womanly woman.

  • iconoclast

    I wonder if maybe women who pursue serious & successful careers are usually EASIER to live with than those who do not//the idea being that if they get their sense of empowerment from their jobs as executives or doctors or whatever then maybe then don’t feel the same need to dominate their husbands and can actually be FRIENDS with them.

    Or am I just grasping at straws here?

  • DCrockett

    Klavan wrote:

    “[M]arriage is a large sacrifice for a man. He gives up his right to sleep with a variety of partners, which is as basic an urge in men as having children is in women. He takes on responsibilities which will probably curtail both his work and his social life. If he doesn’t also acquire authority, gravitas, respect and, yes, mastery over his own home, what does he get? Companionship? Hey, stay single, dude, you’ll have a lot more money, and then you can buy companionship.”

    That’s a boy’s view, not a 50-year-old’s. It’s also a view oblivious to the greater happiness and income married men report, as compared to single men. So pardon me, if I

    *Defer judgment on the quality of the Klavan marriage until I hear directly from both of the parties in it, and

    *Doubt the value of taking seriously anything this boy has to say about manhood.

  • excathedra


    1) Stupid White Guys (SWGs); 2) Ass-Kicking Women (AKWs); and, Obviously Superior Minorities (OSMs).


    I have noticed this for the last several years and it is crazy-making.
    It also describes every dogs-breakfast movie made by the SciFi channel.

  • excathedra

    As a “gay” man, I have a particular interest in masculinity. It is a hot button issue for guys like me, whose claim to membership in the male tribe is questioned because of our erotic natures.

    Unlike too many of my rainbow brethren, however, I am unabashedly in favor of manhood. The classical combination of power, courage and skill which has defined real men across time and culture is a fundamental necessity for human life and a flourishing society. Real men are not women, not boys and not God (though they have some spark of tenderness, playfulness and divinity in them). Unless the rich constellation of manhood in its various forms is promoted and respected in a culture, that culture is doomed.

    I have been much influenced by a book called “Androphilia”, written by a young homosexual man, Jack Malebranche is his pen name, as a manifesto, in which he resigns from the “gay” community precisely because he loves men! He pungently clarifies how the social identity of gayness is shot through with anti-male feminism, leftwing politics and group victimism…none of which are, in my view, healthy for men!

    A line of his apropos of this discussion: “A society dominated by women and effeminates cannot survive.”

  • Midwest Chick

    11B40–We do keep track of those things as well. But, like suek, we watch NCIS, the Mentalist, CSI, etc. and try to stay away from most sitcoms, which is where those subliminal archetypes are being perpetuated.

    Iconoclast–you write “What happens is that instead of only breaking her husband to her will, the wife breaks his spirit. So instead of getting a thoroughbred, she gets a broken-down cart horse. And she is angry about it. Angry and contemptuous. And sexually frustrated since she can’t be attracted to a man she feels contempt for.

    This doesn’t always happen of course//may not even happen in the majority of cases//but it happens an awful lot.”

    Magazines for girls and young women try to make women think that it is correct and right for them to ‘train’ men.

    (If you want to be totally disgusted, follow this link:;_ylc=X3oDMTN1anJtaW43BF9TAzI3MTYxND).

    These things make it VERY difficult for those of us who celebrate our Men and want them to behave as men. I have some life experience that has shown me the difference. Give me a Real Man any day over some metrosexual baby.

  • Charles Martel


    I remember reading an essay years ago by a very iconoclastic Australian “gay” man who was trying to make a sharp distinction between being homosexual and being gay.

    The former, he said, was a matter-of-fact condition of life and description for millions of men. The latter, he thought, was a political/cultural stance that called for one’s homosexuality to be expressed and channeled in a highly oppressive, restrictive and stylized manner.

    I can see why you and Jack Malebranche (great name!) have rebelled against gayness, even as you remain very much at home with your homosexuality. One of the great unspoken truths of this era is how many men there are like you, who seethe at being lumped in with other men with whom they have very little in common.

  • 11B40

    Greetings: especially “suek”

    Your husband and I appear to be contemporaries military-service-wise and I would not argue that there were no morale problems during that period. I was “fortunate” enough to spend most of my time in the bush, so I was able to avoid most of it. But, it did get to the point where the racial and anti-war attitudes effected my desire to come out of the bush. And I would not come out without a “private” and/or an issued weapon.

    That said, I think that there’s a bit of going from the specific to the general in your husband’s assessment. The draft was successful in WWI, WWII and Korea and in between. Besides detaching the young sirs from their mothers’ apron strings, the draft provides a reservoir of trained and experienced men that can be called upon in future emergencies, military or otherwise, local or national. Basic skills liking shooting and not getting shot; moving over, under, around, and through terrains of varying degrees of urbanization; and, basic first aid are lifelong socially beneficial skills. But, the bottom line for me, is teaching young men that, as my mother used to say, “Life is real, and life is earnest, and the grave is not the goal.” Our world is not always or necessarily a friendly place. There will always be more than enough despots interested in eating our lunch and maybe more. Of less importance to me, but nonetheless valuable, is the bonding effect of military service, both intra-generationally and inter-generationally. My own father never talked much with me about his military service until I returned from mine.

    As to Mommy’s letters to her Congressperson, I think that rotating her letter through the company might well put a damper on her future efforts. Effectively administered, this type of intrusion can as often be a status deflater as an enhancer. That asserted, I have some major concerns about the effect of our modern age of telecommunications on our combat troops. How much calling/e-mailing home is a good thing is beyond my own experience. My instinct tell me that in this case, less is probably better. It’s a tough job, but tell them about it when you get home.

    As to women being drafted, I don’t think that this is a good idea. Besides its contribution to keeping the “volunteer” army illusion going, my understanding is that most of the push for women in the military comes from the feminist left in order to establish their false premise of male-female equality. If you look at organized sports at any level, you see the obvious, that women cannot compete against men effectively. This holds for military service also. (Again, I don’t mean to denigrate any individual’s service or commitment; I’m writing here about the policy only.) The basis of my calculus is that introducing women into the military equation is introducing another variable when everyone already has more than enough about which to be concerned. That the military is now devoting its time to “protecting” female soldiers from their male counterparts, is certainly one indication of how off the track we have gotten. Besides the wonder of military pregnancies, we now have two military member families as if no one could figure out that the only thing worse than a child having one parent go off to war was having both parents go off to war. Lastly, there’s that wonderful management problem when some are getting some and some are getting none. Who wouldn’t want a piece of that action, if you know what I mean.

    On a lighter note, to which is where I need to get back, I agree totally with your assessment of the “The Unit” TV program. I think that the originator, David Mamet (a born-again conservative), stepped away from the show and turned it over to his wife around the time of the emergence of “The Junior Varsity Unit”.
    It was a disappointment to me, but I have had to let it go. There wasn’t enough action or interesting “toys” once the program went 50-50. As to the “History Detectives”, I saw it enough times to rename it the “Diversity Detectives”.

  • suek


    We agree more than we disagree. On this one, though, I disagree:

    >>The draft was successful in WWI, WWII and Korea and in between.>>

    Not with your statement, but in the assumption that it worked then so it will work now. I see a much greater difference between the cultures of the military and the civilian population than I think existed in the period before the Vietnam War. I agree that the civilian youth today needs it (even more than they did then), but the culture is so different that I can see it developing into some real problems.

    I also agree with you about women in the service – though there are certainly areas where they can serve, but then you get into discrimination of a different sort. And I agree that if there are minors involved, _one_ member of the couple should _not_ be military, and if you have a single parent home, that parent should _not_ be in the military. While it isn’t the military’s problem in one sense (“if the army thought you needed a wife, you’d have been issued one”), it is. Morale is always an issue.

    >>I think that the originator, David Mamet (a born-again conservative), stepped away from the show and turned it over to his wife around the time of the emergence of “The Junior Varsity Unit”.>>

    _That_ must be an interesting marriage…!

  • Ymarsakar

    The draft was successful in WWI, WWII and Korea and in between.

    If you can find a Total War or partial war for men to be drafted into, you could emulate such results. But the current military climate does not require total war and even if it did, it would be way too short to produce any real requirement for a warm body draft.

    There is also the question of deferments. You cannot, literally, draft 90% of the male aged population between the ages of 19 and 40. That would destroy the economic sector, and even if the women will fill the gap, they cannot do so in such vital industries as engineering. For there aren’t a lot of women in engineering. Same for mathematics.

    So with that being the case, who decides who is going to go and who is going to stay? Ted Kennedy is going to decide. Barbara Boxer is going to decide. And giving such people more power over other people’s lives is never a good thing.

    To the extent that the Left wants to ban ROTC and military recruitment, it is, indeed, to get rid of the competition. However, this competition, in the current form that they despise, is focused on volunteers, thus the Left cannot subvert and infiltrate the military, because they would need volunteers to do so. Now if the government simply had the power to draft people in, and the Fifth Column of traitors continue to pull the levers of American power, then the Left will easily find malcontents, saboteurs, and traitors in the current US military.

    They have already created plants and moles in key vital sectors of the US natonal security, espionage, and diplomatic services. Those sectors leak like sieves whenever the Democrats need a political advantage. The Democrats will eventually do so with the military, because so long as they have the power, they might as well use it, from their perspective.

    As a strategy against Leftist cultural indoctrination, it is plain to see that the reactive 2 or 4 or 8 years of military service is not going to eradicate Leftist anti-Americanism. They will have 20 or 18 years with which to indoctrinate the current or future generations. This war cannot be won on the defensive by slow reactions which don’t even invest the same amount of time to de-program people that the Left has spent in programming them. The strategy lacks OODA attributes. Instead of getting inside the Left’s OODA, a military draft would allow them to set policies and thus get inside the military’s OODA loop. I don’t see this as all that likely of producing victory against the Left and their goals.

  • 11B40

    Greetings: especially “suek”

    In terms of the cultural adjustment, I don’t think this would be significantly different. My understanding is that the military has somewhat toned down its act in terms of training. Even with the “volunteer” military, there are still rejects and wash-outs. The military has a couple of hundred years experience in turning citizens into soldiers and the numbers needed these days would probably allow for a good deal of post-draft/early training selectivity. The son of a guy I know went in the Army and was back out in about 6 weeks, so they’re not batting a thousand in the “volunteer” system. I’d be okay with them getting some kind of appropriate discharge. As a fallback, there’s always the stockade or the brig for the serious knuckleheads.

    As for the women who really want to serve, well, every soldier wants his own special nurse. And I’m sure there are administrative jobs that could be so filled. But my difficulty with the concept stems from what we used to call “strap” jobs. These were rear (or relatively rear) jobs that we would try to fill with combat troops who had done more than was expected of them or, alternatively, than they could handle. A lot of “clerks and jerks” positions were filled this way so some guy could finish out his tour for a couple of weeks or months. If these positions are filled by women, this administrative asset dries up as they would be in the position for their full tour. In the case of a more “asymmetrical” situation, you’re providing a higher value target for your opponents to focus on. Think Jennifer Lynch, et al. For myself, I would have a much harder time dealing with the loss of a female soldier than a male.

    (P.S.) I don’t have a clue where to start with “Ymarsakar”. I think that I’m going
    to have to sleep on that one.

  • Mike Devx

    My problem with a draft is similar to those raised by suek and ymarsakar.

    Civilians *were* different prior to the 60s. They’ve been well indoctrinated into anti-military, even anti-human thought since then. My generation, born early 60s, was effectively indoctrinated in this manner. By high school the “creative writing” I was doing was science fiction of a sort, and generally about evil humans and how wonderful nature was, especially without humans. (Take a look at Andre Norton’s execrable ‘Breed To Come’. I *loved* that story back then; it thoroughly disgusts me now.) I did not develop anti-human ideas on my own from a vacuum; I was indoctrinated. In the schools. It can only have gotten much worse since then, especially due to the nature of the anti-global-warming crusade, in which the evil humans that are systemically destroying Dear Mother Earth, depleting all natural resources, and for which the only acceptable solution, really, is massive human depopulation. Yes, that is all sarcasm on my part, I hope you all hear it.

    With a draft, you’ll get them for two to four years. Our military is much more technological and complex than it was through the 50s. From my limited understanding of Vietnam, even then the new draftees were remarkably ineffective and too often died quickly due to wet-behind-the-ears syndrome. The drug culture appeared to in fact be rampant. Heck, I knew an Airborne Ranger in the early 90s who, after the downsizing of the military hit him, loved nothing more than to get high on pot many times each week, and as far as I can tell loved it while in the military, too. I’m not sure the military could effectively handle millions of useless, whining brats coming in via a peacetime draft; I fear the endlessly whining brats would end up transforming the military instead. But perhaps I’m just defeatist and pessimistic. I *like* what I see in our volunteer military; the cameraderie and professionalism; the fact that they reenlist out of duty, honor, loyalty to their fellow professional soldiers… and because they find fulfillment in the soldiering life. Being surrounded by millions of whining brats who lack even the desire to develop a professional soldiering attitude would probably have a negative effect.

    And after two or four years, the vast majority of the whining brats would still be whining brats and would thankfully be gone back into the civilian world. I think today’s military benefits from the skill level of the reenlistees, from all the skills and professional attitudes that they maintain. During that two or four years, what would we do with them? It would be most useful to train into skilled positions those who appear likely to remain; it would be a waste on those who just want to get back home. So in the event of conflicts, our whiny brats would end up on the front lines, precisely where they’d do the most harm.

    Too pessimistic, probably, I know.

  • Ymarsakar

    I wouldn’t wish to put a finger on the exact percentile that the military can successfully convert or de-tox. Certainly it is more than 25% and less than 75%.

    However, there are several sayings in the military lexicon. “No plan survives contact with the enemy”. “The enemy has a vote too”.

    In this circumstance, who is the enemy? The enemy is the Left and their Democrat shills, dupes, and useful idiots. Think of them just as you think of AQ when planning strategies to obliterate AQ.

    So is AQ going to stand by while we create prosperity, security, and democracy in the Middle East? Will our plans simply grind to ultimate victory there with AQ just sitting on their thumbs? No. And so the same is true for the Left.

    11B has a strategy or at least a proposal concerning key aspects of political indoctrination and patriotic or cultural allegiances. But the Left is not going to be passive while this plan is carried out. No, they will interfere .They will infiltrate. They will betray, backstab, lie, deceive, sabotage, and destroy.

    And they will be the masters. Because they will be the leaders, the politicians, the economic billionaires. The ones that decide where defense contracts will go, with preferences given to Boxer’s husband, for example. They will be the ones that tell the Generals “Call me Senator or you will lose your stars”.

    The military won’t be able to do a damn thing if their Boot Camp detoxification program is dismantled. The military won’t be able to do a damn thing when political favoritisms are given out to certain draftees over other draftees. Why? Cause the military is beholden to civilian command, and in that war, the military ain’t going to win.

    No, you first have to get the draftees OUT of the military for them to do a damn bit of good in this fauked up nation we call the Obamanation full of OBamafaukingcans and not Americans.

    The Left should be destroyed. I want to destroy the Left. I want it so bad I can taste it. But that’s why I have to see it from the Left’s perspective. To predict their actions, in order to annihilate them. To defeat an enemy, one must learn to think like the enemy. And the more you hate the enemy, the more you have to think like them.

  • Ymarsakar

    The military would keep him busy (and as my father used to prefer, tired), teach him some skills, expose him to some forms of deprivation, put some money in his pockets, all under some level of adult supervision. The military would, more importantly these days, provide the opportunity for our young men to get in touch with their patriotism which I believe is being subtly, and not so subtly, eradicated by our educational institutions.

    All that 11B has described here is true.

    Yet it is also true that our nation is a good nation, a great nation. That elected Obama.

    The military will be able to save many people from the ravages of nihilism and anti-Colonial European ideologies and religions.

    But will it be enough to save the nation from its own people? My analysis of the future says not.

  • suek

    >>depleting all natural resources>>

    This one is interesting. If a tree falls and there’s no one to hear it, does it make a sound? What _are_ natural resources? You can have all the ingredients for a magnificent dessert in your refrigerator, but if you don’t take them out and _do_ something with them, you have garbage in your refrigerator. Likewise “natural resources”…if you don’t _do_ something with them, they’re not really resources…they’re just chemicals – or _stuff_ – or something. The fact that someone calls them “natural resources” indicates that they are the raw material that can be used to produce something. But only humans can produce things – and in order to do so, yes, they _will_ deplete the source. So…either it’s a substance which can be _used_ or it’s just a substance. Without human endeavor, it’s just a substance. It’s just _stuff_. The old story of King Midas comes to mind. All the gold in the world and not a drop to drink.

    >>Yet it is also true that our nation is a good nation, a great nation. That elected Obama.>>

    You know…I think I disagree with this. We _were_ a good and great nation. And that goodness/greatness was based on the fact that the majority – the moral majority – were imbued with the Judeo-Christian ethic. 50 years ago, I don’t believe Obama could have been elected, and that’s without any regard to his color. His ideals simply wouldn’t have been adequate. So I think Obama was able to be elected because we have too many people who no longer can defend the J-C ethic as being the only acceptable one. I’ve said it before – you need both religion and law to maintain an orderly society. Only one or only the other and you will have a tyranny. Control of behavior is either internal or external. The goal of J-C ethic is the internal control of behavior. Without it, you have only external control which is the force of law.

    I don’t know if we can take a step back, but if we don’t, the only way forward is not one I’m happy with.

  • Ymarsakar

    Don’t worry, Suek. We still have our guns. For now.

  • Gina Maria

    At first I thought the boyish-men phenomenon was just something new that only effected the man-boys of my generation (I’m in my early 30s) and earlier. But as I gain more experience in the professional world I’m beginning to realize it effects all men, and it’s really pretty pathetic. I am so sick of feeling like the only rational person at work. I work with only men, and they’re mostly in their 40s and 50s, and the amount of whining that goes on is mind boggling. I have these little internal fights with myself to keep from slapping some sense into these “men” all the time. “Seriously?! You’re crying about working late, when you get to go home early 9 days out of 10?! Snap out of it, man! Grow a pair and do your freakin’ job!!” AAGGGHHHHH!! Sorry, just needed to vent for a second.

    Love your blog, by the way!