Quote Originally Posted by Eric
"That's why we need the draft reinstated - many more would know how to fold clothes and make the bed(g)."

Actually, I support the idea of making voting and "full citizenship" conditional on military (or civilian equivalent) service. Such a policy would provide a much needed "common experience" for Americans from all backgrounds and bolster positive nationalism/idealism. Today, the rank and file military is comprised mostly of people from the lower socio-economic strata - whose options are not as viable as those from middle and upper class backgrounds. There are many (myself among them) who would have liked to go in for a year or so, but who did not because of the tremendous competitive disadvantage a several-year committment to the military poses relative to one's peers who go directly to college and from there into the workplace. By the time a current enlistee gets out, he's several years behind his civilian peer group. Most middle and upper class kids won't buyinto that.... understandably.

"No argument there. What bothers me is the linkage of all these various databases, so the security clearance fingerprints are now available to any agency who wants to look."

Amen.

Things have gone topsy turvy - with alleged "conservatives" kowtowing to (if not cheerleading for) policies that are the antithesis of what conservatism used to mean.

When did Americans become such a spineless, fearful people?

This may sound out of left field, but it first became evident to me when I looked at our reaction to the 1973 energy crisis. That was truly the transforming event of our lifetimes in terms of a paradigm shift in the US position in the world and our peoples relative reaction to events. American drivers accepted (for quite a while) the most idiotic law ever passed by a legislative body: the 55 mph national speed limit.

There were certainly not enough freedom loving people to tell congress to stick this law where the sun doesn't shine.

I saw that as a pivotal point in our country's history. A look back again will prove me correct, I believe.