Mission Before Me: When The Warrior Class Runs For Office

At The Tank on National Review Online, I have written an article perhaps of interest to Wizbang readers: Mission Before Me: On Supporting Vets Running for Public Office. It is a continuation of a conversation with a friend on Twitter.

I’ll cut to the chase and give you the conclusion, but hope that some will read the whole thing and see – and perhaps weigh in on – just how I got there.

With the challenges facing us, from those already in existence to those being recklessly placed before and upon us and our children yet unborn, that sense of “Mission Before Me” will be the ingredient that pushes back the tide of encroaching socialism and the economic erosion that has followed every embrace of socialism in history. And with economic failure goes security and civil society as we have known it. Take a look around the world, or perhaps barely as far as Mexico, and have a look at the effect economic collapse has on both security and civil society.

Do not look for specific expertise or experience in those you elect to govern on the vast array of critical issues before us. See Mr. Geithner (appointed by those elected) and Vice President Biden, if you like. No, look for character and core conservative principles. Because if you possess both, you can err from time to time as being human requires of us, but you will always be guided in the right direction no matter the specific topic among the vast. And when it comes to elected officials, their direction dictates the direction of us all.

“Replacing politicians w no knowledge of global financial & security flows w vets with only security experience” = huge change. Because it’s about the character and principles that lead to good decision-making, not single-issue expertise in any area, security or otherwise.

In hindsight, I wish I had revisited the piece before pubbing long enough to draw proper examples of how veteran status is not an infallible indicator of character, conduct and principle. Congressman Jack Murtha (D-PA) comes immediately to mind, as does former Congressman Duke Cunningham (R-CA).

But the common quality of “Mission Before Me” among military veterans, particularly today’s generation of tested warriors, is an attribute too rare by comparison among America’s general civilian population, and enough to give an initial benefit of the doubt to a veteran candidate for office.

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