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Re: Word from Iraq

> From: cathy carpenter <cathyc@rnet.com>
> As you say, when you join the military, there are no guarantees,
> because what the government gives, the government can take away.
Well, Cathy, I think all of our opinions (on anything) are colored by
our personal experiences, which, of course, differ considerably.  But
the bit of your message quoted above is so VERY true.  I think people
either don't realize this or forget it.  

Historically, governments have never been particularly good about
taking care of their war veterans.  Once disbanded, generally
forgotten seems to have been the rule from time immemorial in most
countries.  After the WWI, there were marches on DC by veterans
trying to get the pay they were due - or was it pension - something
they'd been promised that had not materialized and these people were
really hurting - no jobs; no money; no food, etc.  There weren't any
real safety nets in those days as there are today.  They were very
roughly treated by the government in response to their audacity in
demanding their due; tents burned in the Mall and all.  

Today, I think most people expect that the government is going to do
more for them than they are actually going to get in most cases.  The
government is very good at taking, but very selective about giving.

I don't remember who made the comment about the payouts for those who
lost family members in the 9/11 disasters.  While losing those people
was a tragedy, I have to agree that the amounts paid were ridiculous,
especially compared to the compensation offered for those losing
family members who died as a result of serving their country.  I put
it down to the general hysteria that followed upon 9/11; the flames
of which, I might add, are still being fanned whenever our
illustrious leaders want to move public opinion in some direction or

Marge Talt, zone 7 Maryland
Editor:  Gardening in Shade
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