Thursday, January 05, 2006

Kids, first year associates and members of the military ought to be seen and not heard... which is why I'm not pleased with General Peter Pace, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, criticizing John Murtha's comments as "damaging to troop morale and to the Army's efforts to rebound from a recruiting slump"... nor am I happy with Lieutenant Colonel John M. Kanaley's letter criticizing those in Congress opposed to the war in Iraq.

It's not that I disagree with the substance of Pace's or Kanaley's comments... it is simply that they (in a way) answer to Congress and criticizing one's boss in public is just something that isn't done. I don't expect - or want - to read of some bureaucrat in HHS criticizing either Congress or the Bush Administration. You take a job - any job, whether in the private sector or in the military, and keeping your mouth shut in public goes with the paycheck. If you feel the need to speak out, quit... you can then talk to your heart's content (assuming anyone is still interested in listening).

It's even more important for those in uniform to keep their mouths shut. First, there are plenty of people serving in policy making (i.e., political) positions (Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld and Secretary of the Army Francis Harvey) who can - and ought to - speak to Murtha's comments. Second, I don't want our military getting involved in political and policy decision-making. That's a job for those elected to the Presidency and Congress. I want our military focused solely on figuring out better ways of killing our enemies... and talking to the press doesn't help them do that at all.