Which nation did veterans fight for?
by Kevin Foley
October 18, 2013 12:00 AM | 3732 views | 14 14 comments | 46 46 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Last week I apologized to late Army Pvt. David Parman for the tea party-instigated anarchy in Washington. Not surprisingly, it drew several uncomplimentary letters.

One declared, “Foley found opportunities to usurp the dignity of a warrior, and to impute Foley’s own warped political views onto the blameless hero.”

“Foley claims that Pvt. Parman would be upset by conservatives who make their voices heard,” huffed another, “who resist what they see as government tyranny equal to or worse than that with which King George oppressed the Colonies.”

“How arrogant of you to presume a man who fought and died for his country nearly 70 years ago even shares your liberal view …” a third scolded.

These comments are interesting in light of the protest at the World War II memorial this week. I don’t mean the phony one where Sen. Ted Cruz showed up to cynically blame President Obama for the chaos Cruz and his tea party allies engineered.

I’m talking about the one Tuesday at which Iraq, Afghanistan and veterans from other wars demanded their benefits not be cut off. The protest came after the Department of Veterans Affairs warned more than five million vets and their families wouldn’t receive their checks if the shutdown wasn’t ended.

“This is a huge slap in the face,” retired Marine Jesse Bier told USA Today.

“We all stuck together when we were in combat. We put the mission first. We put our country first,” added Paul Rieckhoff, founder and CEO of Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America. “Put the country first and end this shutdown.”

“For many, these payments may be the only, or primary, source of income,” Garry Augustine, executive director of Disabled American Veterans, explained. “Posturing and playing politics with veterans is unacceptable.”

I’m pretty sure Pvt. Parman, who gave his life in early 1945 during the Battle of the Bulge, would agree with these comments and others like them condemning tea party extremists seeking to bring the nation to its knees.

They failed, of course. President Obama stood his ground, refusing to let them use the good faith and credit of the United States as a bargaining chip. The veterans will get their checks and federal employees will return to work and receive their back pay.

Those three weeks on the shutdown bridge to nowhere cost taxpayers $24 billion, according to Standard & Poor’s.

The letter writers fail to understand the battle raging in Washington isn’t between progressives and conservatives. It’s between corporate interests that back the Republican establishment and want the government to function normally and a small number of billionaires like David and Charles Koch who’d rather see the government just go away.

“The current budget brinkmanship is just the latest development in a well-financed, broad-based assault on the health law, Mr. Obama’s signature legislative initiative,” reported the New York Times on Oct. 5. “Groups like Tea Party Patriots, Americans for Prosperity and FreedomWorks are all immersed in the fight …

“The billionaire Koch brothers … have been deeply involved with financing the overall effort. A group linked to the Kochs, Freedom Partners Chamber of Commerce, disbursed more than $200 million last year to nonprofit organizations involved in the fight.”

The dysfunction and infighting inside the party, according to former GOP Rep. Joe Scarborough, has left “the Republican brand … shattered.”

With the help of Cruz, the conservative media, and ill-informed tea partiers, the Kochs nearly realized their vision: no government at all; a nation in which the wealthiest get wealthier, the middle class struggles to survive, and the desperate poor grow in ever-increasing numbers.

Pvt. Parman died to preserve one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all — not one nation, divided, for a few soulless billionaires.

Kevin Foley is a public relations executive, author and writer who lives in Kennesaw.
Comments-icon Post a Comment
EM Buckner
October 20, 2013
I'm one veteran (US ARMY, 1969-1970 active duty; and yes, I have the DD214 to prove it--and an honorable discharge earned after six years of active and reserve duty) who applauds what Kevin Foley has written.

Mike H speaks for me, at least on this.

Thanks, Mr. Foley. --Ed Buckner
East Cobb Senior
October 21, 2013
Mr, Buckner, Foley conveniently leaves out his billionaire socialist George Soros and MoveOn.org, who is financing his leftist agenda and who is trying to destroy America and its founding principles.
October 19, 2013
Let's get to point of this... argument. The recent showdown in Washington was about the ideological direction of our country. A handful of Republicans had the courage to try to face down the President and the Democrats over the direction they're taking our country... toward Socialism. Call it what you want but Obama Care is Socialized medicine. A major institution that will now fall under the central planning and control of government. And, because Chief Justice John Roberts discovered that healthcare is really a.. Tax then all of us have to participate. There is no escape. We are no longer free and independent to... decide for ourselves. The government is deciding for us. A gang of government bureaucrats are deciding for us. This is what the showdown was about. Thank you courageous Republicans/Tea Party members.

Now let's discuss all of this fear mongering. After watching all of this sound and fury and perpetrating of fear over the shutdown of the government I've come to the conclusion that the Progressive movement is the... New Ku Klux Klan. Like the KKK of the past, you progressives (the new KKK) use regionalism, racism, bigotry, hate, race bating, political correctness, threats and intimidation to frighten citizens and force them into submitting to your ideology. The old KKK burned crosses to expose, label and intimidate those in the community who were the dissenters of the KKK message. Now, those of you in the New Ku Klux Klan uses racism and political correctness to expose, label, intimidate and destroy those who dissent against your ideology.

No, the recent argument in Washington wasn't about the shutdown of the government. It was about who will own and direct the very soul of our country.

Our Man in Powder Springs

why not
October 22, 2013
When I first read this post I thought it was a parody of a Jon Stewart parody! Progressives are the new KKK, Really? Have you ever been to a Klan rally, Tea Party or Militia meeting and see any Obama bumper stickers? When it is pointed out that conservative policy's are bigoted and are harmful to minorities, women, the poor and young people, they say "Were not bigots, you're the bigot". In their mind they really believe it. The proof of who represents the Klan can be found at the polls. The Party of Lincoln had been reduced to right wing regional party in gerrymandered districts of the old Confederacy, populated by hateful old white men yearning for the 1950's when the white man reigned supreme and there was no "Black man in the White House". The good news is that they will not last forever, like Jefferson said "someday this reign of witched will end".
October 19, 2013
There's something much bigger going on here. Much bigger than the Democrat "victory" over the shutdown. Yes, it was their victory, but what did they actually "win?" That's another topic.

I digress.

KF and the progressives are worried about the disaster unfolding before our eyes called Obamacare.

Obama and Sebelius like to speak of "glitches." Glitches? Are you kidding? This is looking like a Cat 5 Epic Fail! And, I'm not speaking only of the IT failure.

Megan McArdle at Bloomberg explains it well:

"The worry was that if insurance is hard to buy -- if you have to do your own comparison shopping and then call the insurance company, and fax in some paperwork and two years of tax returns -- that the young and the healthy simply won’t do it."

"If the pool is too skewed - if it’s mostly old and sick people on the exchanges - then insurers will lose money, and next year, they’ll sharply increase premiums. The healthiest people will drop out, because insurance is no longer such a good deal for them. Rinse and repeat and you have effectively destroyed the market for individual insurance policies. It’s called the “death spiral,” and the exchanges, like the mandate, were designed to keep it from happening."

As I said, it is not just IT, it's in the economics. Look up "adverse selection."

Obama's approvals are in the tank and polling tells us the bulk of the population thinks the country is heading in the wrong direction. This does not bode well for the progressives in next year's mid-terms.

Add to all that the impending Obamacare cataclysm and it's clear that our progressive friends are not only worried about the mid-terms, but the progressive movement.

Don't get me wrong. I'm not doing a happy dance. There is no telling how badly Obamacare will damage the insurance markets, the healthcare industry, and our economy.
October 21, 2013
So, what does Obama do today to calm our worries? He gives a speech in the Rose Garden, flanked with human props who hope to benefit from Obamacare. However, according to the White House's own mini-bios of the props, only three have successfully enrolled so far.

We expected Obama to explain what went wrong and what steps HHS will take to correct these mistakes. Instead, we get a sugar-coated infomercial, and as Scott Johnson over on PowerLineBlog so succinctly put it:

"Message to the people: He thinks you’re stupid. Message to the media: He thinks you’re compliant tools."
October 19, 2013
The "tea party-instigated anarchy", eh?

Let's compare and contrast...

Occupy Wall Street: public elimination of human waste (trying to be delicate), public sex, sexual assaults, child abuse, drug use, arrests, anti-semitism, vandalism, assaults, and unimaginable filth.

Million Vet March: barricades removed from an open air plaza and stacked in front of the White House.

If you had to choose a next door neighbor, from which of the two groups above would you make your selection?

Side bar: The National Park Service (NPS) spent tax-payer money to erect these barricades. The NPS erected the barricades the very next day. Obviously, the NPS was prepared for the shutdown and had the barricades pre-positioned and ready to go. In 2011 the NPS allowed the OWS protestors to camp illegally in Washington for 100 days. Look online for the video of Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC) grilling NPS Director Jonathan Jarvis. It'll bring a smile to your face, guaranteed.
Laura Armstrong
October 27, 2013
I called Gowdy's office and thanked him for his intelligent, scalding cross exam of Jarvis, who as much as admitted he targeted our veterans, citing them, fining them and treating them like dirt...and never once did the same for the Occupy lawbreakers.
Mike H
October 18, 2013
It's always good to hear a fact based logic driven conversation. It's always a surprise when it is in the MDJ. Thank you Kevin for your fair observations.
Samuel Adams
October 19, 2013
You don't have to read the MDJ if you don't like it.

But you DO have to buy Obamacare if you don't want it.

Hmmm, seems like something is way wrong, doesn't it?
easy answer
October 18, 2013
Without reading this article, I can answer the question Mr Foley poses. The country that our veterans fought for was the country we had before the corrupt, far left administration of Barak Hussein Obama.
October 18, 2013
Veterans did NOT fight for Obama's America, which couldn't be farther from the original premise of our Founding Fathers.

Veterans fight DESPITE Obama's America, FOR the American Dream, which Obama is destroying.

And YOU are a thin-skinned hypocrite not qualified to comment on this topic with any credibility at all.
Samuel Adams
October 18, 2013
Good try Foley, but you are wrong, and again using our veterans to make your weak points.

You claim Dem talking points that the veteran's rally last Sunday was phony? Tell that to the legless veteran who delivered park service barrycades to Obama's front yard! There was nothing phony about the printed signage, suspiciously in place at National Parks across America just hours after the government shut down. Something that usually takes weeks if not months to make happen in our bureaucracy was in place immediately. Any government employee can tell you that those signs were ordered months ago in preparation for Obama's orchestrated clash. Obama's unyielding, dictator-like refusal to respect our nation's institutions is the real problem. And you, a wealthy man by most measures, made your fortune off the very capitalism you rail against.

Yes, the Tea Party was in the fight. But you won't admit the Tea Party is made up of veterans and hard working Americans who don't give a rat's behind about the Koch brothers, your fantasy demons and point of rally. We act as individuals, because we love this country and the ideals upon which it was founded.
Old timer
October 19, 2013
This letter is too true....
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