LISTEN TO TLR’S LATEST PODCAST:
There sure are a lot of libertarians in the military. It’s hard to say if they are drawn to service or if the military catapults folks far away from what they thought their views were right into the liberty movement. Either way, here are 9 struggles of libertarian servicemembers:
9. Opposing the Drug Wars
Why don’t folks understand one can support ending the drug war without actually being on drugs?
8. Government healthcare
The first, second, and third line of defense is always ibuprofen… and water… a lot of water. Oh, and heaven forbid you need to see a specialist.
7. Raging nationalism
For as many liberty-minded people you find in the military, you can find an equal number who would bleed red, white, and blue regardless of the military’s mission. Many folks who would otherwise be great mouthpieces for libertarianism struggle with the propensity toward the groupthink encouraged in such an environment and can’t get past their nationalistic penchant.
6. Standardized pay
Everyone gets paid the same. It doesn’t matter if you are a paramedic or a food server. La-dee-da-dee-every-body. Well, except for those who don’t… like if you’ve been in longer than someone else (even if you suck worse at your job); or if you are an Officer (even though an increasingly large number of NCOs have degrees); or if you are a reservist on deployment who lives at home with his parents but since he lives in boston he is making more money than anyone else on the squad because of “Basic Allowance for Housing” …. not that that has ever happened. #eyeroll
Even when you do get paid, it comes in as fast as it goes out – usually on new uniforms or replacing some piece of bullshit equipment that all the bleach in the world couldn’t clean to standard.
5. Rank structure
Being told what to do is one thing, but being told what to do by someone who has no idea what they are talking about is even worse. Libertarians respect one another for what they bring to the table and not what bullshit title they put before their name. Titles don’t necessarily equal experience, knowledge or intellect.
4. Waste, fraud and abuse
There is plenty of waste, fraud and abuse where it doesn’t need to be and a complete lack of funding where it is completely needed. Chances are, any servicemember you know has had to exhaust resources “to make sure we aren’t shorted next fiscal year.” If not, they probably know of a few servicemembers’ whose mere existence were a waste of government funds, but they are retained because …numbers.
3. Forfeiture of Civil Rights
Yes, again. We volunteered for this. Although, no one understands how badass the Bill of Rights is until it no longer applies.
2. Already being against the next war
Chances are we don’t agree with whatever is going on foreign policy wise. Swearing to uphold the Constitution against all enemies – foreign and domestic doesn’t involve being the world police. Seeing what war does to a country is terrible. Having to live through that is even more terrible. Seeing what it does to the country being invaded, seeing what it does to the servicemembers doing the invading (especially the ones with the blind nationalism issues) – these variables, and many others, make it easy to be #antiwar.
1. Questioning Authority
Even though we volunteered for this – which we have to remind ourselves of every day – our inner libertarian still screams at the top of its lungs every time we are told what to do.