Saturday, August 31, 2013

Month 12 Day 31

The days are all starting to run together. It is getting all messed up
because I am sleeping during the days and working during the night.

At midnight.  I was awake and had midnight rations at the chow hall.
After I whad finished I came out and spoke to Brian, he was sitting
alone on a picnic table.  He reasoned that there was no point in being
in a country with good weather if one did not actually go out and
spend time in it.  I can see his point.

We had a good conversation for over an hour.  WE talked about a lot of
things Calvinism, determinism, the extent to which someone can really
be culpable for their actions if we live in a determinisc universe.
This came about because we were again talking about how Brawny
specifically but everyone else to a lesser degree is still offended at
me calling them a bunch of pussies.  We talked again about how guys
are just not willing to put the country or what is right ahead of
their careers.  We talked about how Brian could stay in for two more
years and bilk the system without fear of deploying, but he has chosen
not to.

Again we came back to the question that still plagues me.  It has
appeared in different forms, but it it always something like this.  Is
doing the ‘wrong’ thing in a system that is wrong really the wrong
thing (The specific instantiation was me calling the other guys out as
cowards for not putting what was right ahead of their careers when it
had no effect other than to piss them off, and diminished our cohesion
for the last couple of weeks).  As a matter of fact, I would say no,
there was nothing wrong with the Montgomery bus boycotts, nor the sit
ins in the 1960s, they were doing the right thing in a system that was
wrong.  Here is the problem.  If you always act like that, then you
will probably be screwed.  The saints among us don’t produce anything
that society thinks is worthwhile, they might live piously, always be
forgiving and always be generous, but they rarly make an impact.  If
you want to have an impact you need to be able to play the game long
enough to be in a position to make an impact.  For instance, when the
congressmen and sentors came and we did the dog and pony show, I could
have continued up the chain and talked to Col Schmitt, and then up
from there if they would allow it, bI could have written my
congressman, whatever.  I didn’t do that.   I brought it up with my
superior two levels up and that was as far as I went.  Was that right?
 How do you choose your ‘ditch to die in’ when should you stop
pushing a moral position.  If you don’t think that it will have any
effect should you just keep your mouth shut, and choose to fight a
battle you can win?  Does acquiescence prolong a system that is broken
and create a system in whith others need to bide their time as well
because ‘that is just the way things are done.’  If all men were
angels there would be no need for government but men are not angels
and often bad things like war need to be done for the sake of the
group or the sake of mankind.  I don’t know what the answer is.  Are
Kantians in the end just group utilitarians, if so, at what point does
the sacrifice of a few justify the death or removal of liberte of a
few for the sake of a group, my just tells me never, but it seems to
be internally consistent with a philosophy that allws you to make
morally correct decisions based on their effect.  I just don’t know.
When should doing what is right be calculated for effect?  What if you
risk the potential to do a lot of right in the long run by throwing
your hat in the ring on a morale issue in the short run?

I came back and worked on my book proposal for a while.

I wrote a bunch of lude messages to Suzan about my arrival home which
probably inhibited her workday, but they made me smile.

I took two Melatonin in the morning and crashed until 1600.

I got up, went to chow, spoke with Bobby Brumfield, he was bithching
about the ANP.  He said
“you know every one of those chiefs wwas just like  shrugging their
shoulders about what they will do if the Taliban come back.  One at
least said he would go to Pakistan, the others are like, I don’t know
who I’ll side with.”

I went to the gym and now I’m typing this, looking forward to a shower
and midnight rations again.

Oh I found out the English/Spanish name of the program they like
watching so much on Tolo TV.  Its simply called Daniela, staring

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