Then-defense secretary Robert M. Gates stopped bagging his leaves when he moved into a small Washington military enclave in 2007. His next-door neighbor was Mike Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff at the time, who had a chef, a personal valet and — not lost on Gates — troops to tend his property...Further information at the Washington Post.
Of the many facts that have come to light in the scandal involving former CIA director David H. Petraeus, among the most curious was that during his days as a four-star general, he was once escorted by 28 police motorcycles as he traveled from his Central Command headquarters in Tampa to socialite Jill Kelley’s mansion...
The commanders who lead the nation’s military services and those who oversee troops around the world enjoy an array of perquisites befitting a billionaire, including executive jets, palatial homes, drivers, security guards and aides to carry their bags, press their uniforms and track their schedules in 10-minute increments. Their food is prepared by gourmet chefs. If they want music with their dinner parties, their staff can summon a string quartet or a choir...
When he was at the Pentagon, Gates wanted to trim some of the perks but ran into resistance. It was, he said, the “third rail” of the Defense Department. “You don’t need a cadre of people at your beck and call in an age of austerity, unless you are a field commander in Iraq or Afghanistan,” a former top aide to Gates said on the condition of anonymity.
19 November 2012
Show of power
I have previously expressed my reservations about the use of elaborate motorcades as a show of pomp during presidential travel. Now it appears the "imperial presidency" accoutrements have been extended to generals as well:
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Why should we be different from any other banana republic?ReplyDelete
Just substituting one set of royalty for another. Our royals are billionaires and the generals and congressmen that serve them.ReplyDelete
I mostly agree. So why do humans do this, elevate certain of us to high positions of esteem and wealth, such as showering them with millions of dollars for a song, just a song, or for playing a sport, such that if they spend it right, they would never have to work another day in their lives? While so many other humans, many who are far smarter, prettier and nobler, live out their lives in obscurity and barely get by? It's a weird custom that persists across many different societies and we can't seem to make it extinct. --A.Delete
Why are you mentioning musicians and athletes when you know that they aren't billionaires and don't influence policy making?Delete
Because I enjoy your attention, of course. --A.Delete
All power corrupts, and ultimate power corrupts ultimately.ReplyDelete
I don't doubt it, sadly. Once a system of entitlements gets established, it is very hard to trim them back. I wonder how many of this perks are supplied by contractors. Because of all the groups that resist moderation, theirs is the most successful at keeping their contracts status quo. If only correction of contract abuse were supported by our court systems, rather than protecting even despicable agreements just because it was signed by both parties. And humans grow accustomed to the high life a little too readily, which may be why we tend to believe in the virtue of someone impoverished, who has never tasted luxury.ReplyDelete
I'm also not surprised that now that Gen Petraeus has been revealed to have feet of clay, the moonbat left (at The Dish et al, I mean) is eager to advance other agenda items intending to weaken the status of our military in our eyes rather than to strengthen it.
And the band plays on.... --A.
*of these perks --A.Delete
This has absolutely nothing to do with "entitlements", and The Dish is a conservative/libertarian site.Delete
Steve at 804p, you think The Dish is conservative?! LOL Slash Libertarian?! Maaaaaybe libertarian on days starting with T and conservative on days starting with Some. Gute lawd. --A.ReplyDelete
In case you are wondering how mr Putin is getting to work:ReplyDelete
They stop and clean off all streets well in advance of cortege.
Interesting. Thank you, Aleksejs.Delete
I watched the youtube vid and what struck me first was how similar it is to how presidents get around in an armored limo. Of course, some measures are for safety. It made me want to ask if the Russians think life is better, the same or worse post-USSR. --A.ReplyDelete
This is how president motorcade looks in Latvia. The traffic is not stopped (although policemen are quite nervous and shouting - let the convoy through):Delete
In Latvia streets are usually cleared only when some important foreign figures arrive:
Regarding Russia, I've heared that they are considering flying them with helicopters...