Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Response to StB, Part I

"Criticizing and questioning our government is the responsibility of every patriot" - Theodore Roosevelt

Response to StB: Part I

Hitler Youth? I have read that article a couple of times. How that one
sentence suddenly inspires the kids of the Third Reich is mysterious. What
about these sentences:
“The entire program is designed for teens who may be teenage parents,
juvenile delinquents, low income, or coping with a learning or other
“There is no tuition, and the campers, mostly 11th and 12th graders, are
paid minimum wage so that they can spend these hours learning instead of
flipping burgers.” “
“When the eight-week program ends Aug. 23, graduates will be certified in
first aid, CPR (both human and animal), and what organizers call "terrorism

What about these sentences--
What about them? I have no quarrel with kids being certified in first aid or CPR, a point I specifically addressed in my first response which evidently bears repeating:

Do I think that volunteering to help out one’s community is evil? Certainly not. In bringing up the subject of Hitler Youth, do I mean to imply that the children of our country that want to do good works are Nazi’s? Most. Certainly. NOT.

My assertions were not an indictment of volunteer work. Rather they were and are meant as an indictment of government run and/or funded volunteer service programs in the context of the horrifically aggressive government and intelligence apparatus of the last six years (minimum).

StB continues…

Sounds like the kids are being taught skills that they may be able to use
later in life. In fact that is what is happening. The program is funded by
the Kentucky Office of Employment and Training. Not Homeland Security.
Fact is, the Department of Homeland Security has nothing to do with the
camp. Neither would I consider learning CPR or first aid part of a
“horrifically aggressive government and intelligence apparatus”. It is just
camp. Why read into it?

Again, my reason for reading into it has been stated. I specifically pointed out in my first response the following sentence from the original article, a sentence and point that you failed entirely to address in your rebuttal:

And those skills include math: "If I have 40 acres of forest," runs a typical problem, "how many search dogs will I need to find a fugitive?"

Call me nuts if you like, but I’m not particularly comfortable with the idea that a camp ostensibly promoting volunteer service and community outreach has within its curriculum instruction on enforcement methodology. I’m also pretty uncomfortable with the fact that said enforcement is being taught to juvenile delinquents and the learning disabled. Intellectual prowess is not a trait generally associated with either of these groups (and yes, I freely acknowledge that there are exceptions--perhaps many, but not enough-- to this, as there are exceptions to most groups or subjects). It is an abuse of the volunteer youth civil service concept (of helping people, not hunting them), and has great potential to become nothing more than a breeding ground for a force of intellectually devoid and wholly indoctrinated stormtroopers for the future War on Terror.

What is next? Are the Boys Scouts part of the conspiracy? After all, they
learn the same skills that these campers are being taught. Maybe computer
camp should be banned so the next generation won’t become minions of
Microsoft. If you aren’t meaning to compare these kids to Nazis, then why
bring up the Hitler Youth to begin with? The inference has been made.
You’re right, an inference has been made, but not the one you assert, as evidenced in my previous specific statements. I am not comparing the kids to Nazi’s; I am inferring the programs themselves have a growing Nazi stench about them. I don’t see how I can be much more specific than I have been already. In the same way that Hitler took advantage of impressionable youth (many of which, no doubt, joined the group with the best of intentions), so also do these programs show increasing potential for the same.


There is another part of your response I would like to deal with more specifically.

The program is funded by the Kentucky Office of Employment and Training. Not Homeland Security. Fact is, the Department of Homeland Security has nothing to do with the camp.

Of course these are not being funded by DHS directly—they already tried that with the TIPS program and people were so pissed off about it the government was forced to rein it in. Bush and pals have shown respect for no law other than their own whims. Do you really think they gave up on the original aims of the program?

The Kentucky Office for Employment and Training is an agency of the Education Cabinet.

Now, take a look at the Education Cabinet budget sheet and see Federal funds under Expenditures by Fund Source.

And in other "benign volunteer program" news…

Page 7 displays Homeland Security funding—take note of the column headers.

Citizens Corps is coordinated by FEMA. FEMA is directly under the umbrella of DHS.

Read about Citizens Corps affiliate programs:

Department of Education
Office of Safe and Drug Free Schools
OSDFS administers, coordinates, and recommends policy for improving the quality and excellence of programs and activities that are designed to provide financial and technical assistance for drug and violence prevention and to promote the health and well being of students in elementary and secondary schools and institutions of higher education. Additional areas of focus include student-led crime prevention; health, mental health, environmental health, and physical education programs; crisis planning and emergency planning, including natural disasters, violent incidents and terrorist acts; and programs relating to citizenship and civics education.
Learn more by visiting

And finally, take a look at this org chart for the Federal Government.

(By now everyone has a headache and is wondering what the hell is my point, so I’ll get to it.)

The federal government, per the org chart and the few above financial examples, is a massive, sprawling, and powerful beast of a thing that spreads around a metric fuckton of money. It is increasingly complex in its inter-agency dependencies and roles, and this goes double when it comes to government financials and accounting. Not a single one of us will ever find a sheet of paper simply stating that DHS has given x amount of dollars to so-and-so’s civic volunteer organization. The system is specifically set up so that the average citizen becomes completely discouraged and fails to care due to their not having personal team of forensic accountants at their disposal (and this is assuming complete governmental transparency, which is only believed by fools to exist).

It is quite simple. Some things have no hidden meaning. Just a job program
helping kids attain skills that may help them later in life. They are not
becoming secret minions to be called into service at a later time.

In the face of this ever-increasing governmental complexity our politicians and media encourage thinking in simple terms, and this flies directly in the face of our duties as American citizens. In this unbelievably politically charged climate, rare is the occasion when the action of any agency or department won’t have something to do with the current (and never-ending) War on Terror. Anything to do with the War on Terror will certainly have a path leading to DHS or one of its attendant agencies—to think that any agency, regardless of sector, will not cow to DHS dictates(by way of the Executive) displays maximum foolhardiness and perilously blind trust. Agencies that take money from the federal government to support their own bureaucratic machines are expected to comply with Federal rules, regulations, dictates, and laws—that they would not suck the Federal tit isn’t even a consideration today.

In its sheer size, complexity, corruption, secrecy, and growing brutality, the Federal government is a testament to our true downward spiral as a society. Wallowing in our ignorance, laziness, and fear we have begged for government to take control and they have been only more than happy to oblige. It is now at the point where states are merely extensions of an increasing Federal arm; an arm that grows day by day in scope and power, leaving state and individual citizen independence far, far behind.

(Part II forthcoming)