Mike McIntyre is going to face at least one challenger in the upcoming 2008 elections, Republican Will Breazeale. Breazeale is not new to campaigning, so in the conservative 7th, this executive officer of the 2nd Battalion, 323rd Regiment in the Army Reserves might give McIntyre a strong fight for the seat.....but I doubt it.
Yes, the district votes Republican, but so does Mike! It's going to take more than a military background to beat the entrenched Blue Dog.
Breazeale has served three tours in Iraq, according to info out there on the web. You can find his web site here with a schedule of his announcement tour. I'm not going to be able to attend any of his events, so I went looking for more information on Breazeale.
The story is from the Robesonian. It isn't about Breazeale, but about Army Reserves recruiting efforts and it is from 2004...but good googly moogly...it's an eye-opener.
The story is about the difficulty the Army Reserves has in recruiting new soldiers. The piece opens and is fairly positive. Breazeale sounds like the perfect little cheerleader for the Army. Then it gets ugly.
In addition to "beating the bushes," the Army is also implementing a change that allows certain individuals to become commissioned officers who have traditionally qualified to enter only in the ranks of the enlisted. The standard to be commissioned by the United States Congress as a second lieutenant normally requires the applicant to hold a four-year degree. However, the Army Reserve has temporarily lowered that education requirement to two years of college.
Ah yes, we're lowering our standards. How very American. I don't know about you, but I'm feeling a lot more secure knowing this.
Oh...but that's not all!
In addition to lowering the requirement to become an officer, Breazeale said the Army has changed things in other ways to entice recruits.
In other words, this is not your father's Army, says Breazeale.
"Boot camp is not nearly as tough as it used to be," Breazeale said. "We do everything we can to help a soldier pass basic training. It costs about $30,000 per recruit just to get them through boot camp. We don't want to lose that investment. We want you to pass."
Breazeale said physical requirements have been eased and boot camp instructors are no longer allowed to swear at recruits or touch them in a menacing manner.
Riiiight, because the enemy isn't going to be shooting real bullets at you or cursing you. Today's enemy invites you for freaking TEA!
Oh, yeah, we're most certainly safer since 9/11.
He also wants to ease the minds of many would-be soldiers who are scared away by a long commitment to the armed forces and the threat of dying on the battlefield.
"We don't want you in the Army if you're not happy, because that's not good for you or us," Breazeale said. "So if you want out after two years, there are ways to accommodate you.
Apparently he hadn't invisioned the military's stop-loss policy. How very short-sighted of him. Breazeale's certainly not looking like someone I want serving this state in Congress. This last statement was the kicker for me.
"And as far as being concerned about becoming a casualty in Iraq, there are a little over 1,000,000 in the Reserves and 140,000 serving in Iraq. With 1,100 killed so far, .007 percent have lost their lives. It is too many but it's not a huge percentage."
Holy mother of Pearl. Sure, let's all go run and join up because not THAT many soldiers have died for this Godawful war, built on lies by a chicken shit president.
McIntyre might not vote the way we want much of the time, but the last thing we need is another Republican cheerleader. We've had enough of those the past eight years and from what I see in this article, Breazeale does not have the judgment to serve the citizens of this state.
Lowering standards to make it easier for the military to recruit might meet recruiting goals, but it doesn't make us safer. He doesn't seem to realize that.