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  • Morning Bell: Keeping Up Our End of the Bargain With Those Who Serve

    Today, we at The Heritage Foundation will honor Veterans Day by pausing to remember those who sacrifice in defense of freedom for our country. Heritage honors all who serve past and present in the United States Armed Forces, their families, and all military retirees and veterans. We solemnly remember those fallen men and women who gave the last full measure of devotion and will also not forget those who have yet to come home and remain missing in action.

    This national holiday warrants a diversion from discussing domestic priorities to take a closer look at what Congress and the White House are doing about many pressing defense issues.

    Some policymakers seem want to keep defense and military issues out of the headlines, choosing instead to continue cutting the defense budget to fund domestic programs. This observation is based on actual outcomes from this year’s defense budget debate.

    During the past few months, Congress and the President effectively shut down the purchase of next-generation equipment for the military. That includes: the Air Force’s F-22 fifth-generation fighter aircraft, the most sophisticated in the world; the Army’s ground vehicles designed to replace a combat fleet built in the 1970s and 80s; two types of helicopters-one which fulfills the unique duty of rescuing military personnel held behind enemy lines; and large cuts to the missile defense program designed to thwart the threat of long-range ballistic missiles from hitting U.S. shores and cities.

    What’s likely next year? Jack Reed (D-RI), a senior member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, recently opined that the Department of Defense should buckle up for some (more) “painful adjustments”-as if any more could be borne by those in uniform-and get ready to do the following:

    Unfortunately, Congress set a horrible precedent, having given the President so many of his defense cuts during a time of war. That just makes more devastating cancellations likely in the coming years.

    The problem is that, since they have no new weapons systems to slash, politicians will need to start eliminating equipment that today’s troops are using everyday. This includes replacements for tanks, trucks, ships and planes that are already worn out after nine years of consecutive warfare in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    In short, finding further “savings” in the defense budget would require cutting to the bone and hurting those in uniform. Having a world-class military and truly honoring those who serve requires policymakers to provide the same technologically-advanced equipment to defeat any enemy when necessary and protect those in harm’s way.

    Providing the military just enough to barely get by is dangerous, and an outright dereliction of duty by federal policymakers whose first job is found in the preamble of the U.S. Constitution: to provide for the common defense of the American people.

    Quick Hits:

    Posted in Ongoing Priorities [slideshow_deploy]

    30 Responses to Morning Bell: Keeping Up Our End of the Bargain With Those Who Serve

    1. Ken Jarvis - Las Veg says:

      I was in the Marine Corp, during the Korean War.

      Did YOU serve?

    2. okiejim says:

      Yahoo News reported this morning that the President's approval rating still remains high among Americans. I would like to know which Americans are being polled. No has ever asked me for an opinion, nor have they asked any of my neighbors. Every poll I have ever participated in without being asked, has shown just the opposite on practically every topic when the results were published. Perhaps Gallup, et.al., need to poll more fly-over country residents and get out of the big cities when conducting their polls.

    3. Mary, WI says:

      Obama and his liberal followers should be ashamed of themselves!


      This country is on a fast track to socialism….why won't people wake up. Are people so complacent they don't see what's happening? It just boggles my mind! Very frustrating!

    4. Freedom of Speech, T says:

      We went thru defense cuts during Carter, Clinton, and now, Obama's administration.

      This is the norm.

      The reason is simple. To millions of our Citizens, domestic priorities are more important that national defense; defense spending represents a nice big dollar sign.

      Far too many have no historical perspective. They have never studied history and so we repeat…

      This is not surprising since there is virtually no meaningful education on our history in the classrooms, especially at the college level. Yes, America's shortcomings will be discussed energetically and passionately. Politically correct history will be emphasized as well. But, it is sad and disgusting that America's military contributions are often approached with loathing and disgust.

      When Americans are taught and naively believe that Mao is just "full of wisdom"; they ignore the facts about this mass murderer. Reasonable Americans know what Mao was "full of" and it was not wisdom.

      When elitest snobs sincerely spout that military members are just killers (as I heard in College), these elitests display they are the worst kind of social freeloader. It is the mission of our military to protect and defend America against all enemies. We do kill people so that our free way of life may exist – over the MAO's of history. Those that "kill" must bear that moral burden for a lifetime.

      If we are going to demand that our military protect us, so that Citizens have the RIGHT to study and admire monsters such as MAO, the least we can do is ensure that the tools of war, both in sophistication and quantity, are provided. Research must never be sacrificed – the consequences could mean our destruction.

      This should be common sense, but again, it is not.

    5. J.C. Hughes, Texas says:

      As military veterans, we owe our fallen comrades the constitutionally recognized individual rights and freedoms they toiled and sacrificed to preserve. The federal's primary role is to provide for a common defense. Listen up congress. This is how you're expected to promote people's general welfare by creating a secure environment so that states and free markets may prosper. My prayers are to the families who never again will see a loved service member return home. It's heart wrenching. Let us forever honor these men and women who've stood in harms way to defend our nation. As a sign of my personal gratitude and sincerest respect, I salute all our brave warriors and support personnel this veteran's day.

    6. Jonathan Seid, Willi says:

      It is important when casting one's vote, to consider the position of the candidates on things military.

      Colleagues have told me they voted for President Obama because they thought he was less likely to go to war. Such a shallow impersonation for a Commander-in-Chief.

      However, that is the criteria many utilize because they did not serve in the military and have purchased the progressive image of beating swords into plowshares.

      How does one learn vigilance except through participation in defense of one's country? Considering that many political leaders display pride in their pacifism, is it any wonder that the tools of defense are depicted as tools of war and therefore ugly, and ugliness should be denied.


      this administrations in it's entirety is a outright dereliction of duty to all Americas that love the CONSTITUTION THAT IS.


      there is no room for no other god in our constitution.

      nor will there aver be. the time has come for this ImpeachObamaCampaign.com

    8. J.C. Hughes, Texas says:

      For Ken in Vegas. The answer is yes. Lieutenant, Nurse Corps, United States Naval Reserve, Spent time off the coast of Kuwait during Operation Enduring Freedom. Also served in the Army as a Specialist Four in South Korea from 75 to 76.

    9. Blair Franconia, NH says:

      Our servicemen deserve the best. Unfortunately, the wingnuts

      in the Democratic Party, think that they're all baby killers. That mindset has held sway since Vietnam. Does the name John Murtha still ring a bell?

    10. Pat Smith says:

      You are extremely naive if you think if American does away with our defenses that you will be safer. The Fort Hood incident and 9/11 should be clear evidence to you that we are under attack by a very hate filled radical group of people who want nothing better than to see all of America and Israel to die. They have repeatedly said how much they love death. Iran is working very hard to obtain the weapons of mass destruction and they will use them. Reagan wanted to build a defense system that would have destroyed incoming missiles out in space before they hit us but the Democrats refused to spend the money. Our only hope is deterrent and better technology. Unfortunately the Dems would rather spend money on their social programs while weakening our defenses. I hope we live through the next few years and hopefully we will get some politicians who want a strong America instead of apologizing for our strength and doing everything in their power to make America poor, weak and under the control of the foreign countries.

    11. Jim U.- New nHaven says:

      Ken Jarvis, I was also in the Army during the Korean War. So what? Your frequent comments on this site tell me that you're having a problem with the dive in popularity being suffered by the guy you voted for.You seem obsessed with answering every negative posting. Why? This is not a game. Can all the negative postings be disgruntled Ne0-Cons? I think not. These are people concerned with the direction this country is going in. Sadly, time will prove us right.

    12. Mad-andy, Missouri says:

      Polls can be made to reflect any outcome desired simply by the way the question is asked. There are people out there that do this for a living and they know how to play the game.

      Polls mean squat.

      What the results of that poll should show you is the blindness and continued culpability of the media in advancing Mr. Obama's radical Marxist agenda. Like all dictators, he understands the need to control what we see and hear.

      How else can former world leaders get away with the horrific deeds they performed for what they saw as the "good" of their nation?

      Like Mr. Beck has stated, we need to keep diaries of our lives during this time so that if we fail to save our country, the real story can be told to the children and not some revisionist nightmare.

      I thank God every day that we have such men as our veterans to secure the future of our wonderful shining city on the hill.

      Unfortunately, it may fall to our veterans to help one more time on our own soil to halt the Marxist counter-revolution.

    13. jim toledo says:

      Wavering House Democrats held up the White House and Speaker Pelosi for millions of dollars for their districts in exchange for yes votes on Obamacare. I think this is our money, tax dollars, so, can we ask Pelosi for it back?

      Under President Obama’s economic stewardship, the United States now has higher unemployment rates than Europe. Hope and Change we can all believe in. It's a good thing the stimulus/TARP bill was passed so quickly; unemployment was supposed to peak at 8%, 10% must be better, the administration must think they are offering us another bigger 'sale'?

    14. Charles, The Republi says:

      First, my prayers & Thanks go to all that have faithfully served a Great Nation. In a world full of would be dictators & tryants it has always been the strenght of our military that has kept us free. As one who has sworn to "Protect & defend the Constitution against all enemies both foreign & domestic", I find it sad that in our schools there is more emphasis on acheivement test scores and multiculturalism than understanding the value of our Constitution. For example: Is our Sec of State in violation of Article 1, Section 6 of the Constitution? Article IV, Section 4 is supposed to protect the nation against invasion & domestic violence ( porous borders & domestic TERRORIST attacks?). Is this admimistration in violation of Article III, Section 3, by attempting to redefining the war on TERROR as a man made castrophe? Is political correctness "giving aid & Comfort" to domestic enemies? PC does infringe on the First Amendment. Being American doesn't mean coming to this nation & recreating your native land. Being American doesn't mean destroying the very things that make you free. Being American means that you are free to go as far as your God-given talents allow you. We are free because millions of men & women took an oath to protect & defend. Lastly, Happy Birthday to the Marine Corp! Where would we be without you guys?

    15. RB, Virginia says:

      First of all, Thank You to all who have served our country and their families.

      What I want to know is when did congress stop answering to the people? What's with all the arm twisting, and why is govt. being run from the top down?

      One other observation about the president's popularity, next time you are in the check-out line notice how many magazine covers are of the Obama's. And last night's ABC cameo appearance by the president on Robin Robert's interview with country music stars. Feels a lot like subliminal messaging seeing the Obama's photos every time you turn around. I'd like to see the presidential ratings after a month of banning the Obama's photos in the media and especially on guest appearances on prime-time. Doesn't he have more important things to do? Robin Roberts has an interview with Janet Jackson in a couple of weeks, I wonder if the president is going to be featured on that show too?

    16. Elaine McGee, Missou says:

      I am disappointed that the Heritage Foundation, while honoring our Veterans, does not make the distinction between Veterans' Day and Memorial Day. Sadly, somewhere along the way we have managed to combine the two. Veterans' Day is to honor those who served their country and returned. Memorial Day is to honor those who died in service to their country.

      I would hope that we can once again celebrate each appropriately as they each deserve their own identity.

    17. Jeanne Stotler, Wood says:

      I give thanks to all those who have served, a special thanks to you Granddad,(lt. Col. Elza C. Johnson, USA,ret.)WWI,Span. Amer. WAR, PFC Wilton Stotler, Phillip and James Stotler, WWII,lost their lives in ETO,Benjamin Church, hero of Kings Phillip's War, and Richard and Elizabeth Warren who pioneered in Plymouth and without, I would not be here today, Henri Mershon who was my grandmother's ancestor and his son's who were true patriots during the rev.war, and all my ancestors, Munro's(Monroe) and Johnson's who were indentured servants from Cromwell's reign. These are the true roots of this country and our first heroes.

    18. Buddy Brown Wilmingt says:

      Just talk to a combat veteran about his toughest moments. Most don't want to talk about it . Because to talk is to remember. Most don't want to. But ask them about ther best times, now the'll talk. Most of those times are about there "buddy's" and what they "when"…..

      Their eyes light up, they get exctied,, Then they start to remember the ones that did not come

      back. That's the ones that we should remember , and celebrate, and thank if we could.

    19. Ron Derry NH says:

      On this day I honor the men that served and those that stand behind the meaning of their sacrifice. I choose not to use it for any other words but those for VETERANS evreywhere.

      This is my SALUTE to you all;

      The Poets Lament

      What is peace, the poets cried, Is it the end of war?

      Is it the will to move aside

      When the killer’s at your door

      Is it a day when all give in

      To powers doing harm,

      Is it the time when voices cry

      Instead of bearing arms?

      Peace on earth, are mighty words

      Voiced by humbles at their seats

      But who defends and makes amends

      For goodwill in retreat?

      Who stands against and gives himself

      To face the mighty beast?

      When evil walks

      With caustic breath

      As far as it can reach

      When men become, all wrought with self

      Forcing conceit upon each other

      Who’s the one to stand up tall

      In defense of his own brother?

      Who’s the one

      Who gives himself

      So others may live in peace

      But the man who fights

      And gives his life

      So others don’t

      Taste defeat

      Peace on earth the poets lament

      Is a sentimental thought

      But peace is gained from those that act

      and in the giving, peace is bought

      Some sing the songs

      that define a game

      where action is to refuse

      But standing up

      and defending others

      Is the life

      A savior would choose.

      To all of you who have lived as Saviors even for just one day….thanks, we have shared in the liberty and freedom that you so nobly bought! Nov 11 VETERANS DAY USA.

    20. Dr Duncan Druhl, Fra says:

      A leader who will not provide on site inspiration to his troops is doomed or a very poor excuse for a commander, one destined to lose the battles for which he is responsible. You need only read Napoleon to know this. Ft. Hood provides an example – Bush was there with Mrs. Bush Friday night for a private visit and I've heard he left office a while ago.

      The narcissist in Chief is going to re-form the USA, but it will not be the vision of the City on the Hill any longer – more like the village dump across the tracks where he and his Marxist social warriors will be comfortable if they get their way.

      You have a choice, USA: dump the clown's acolytes in Congress and elect people who believe in the USA to get it back on track OR re-elect the same folks that report to corporations and not to you. The latter is mostly what you have in Congress now; but you can alter this equation in time to reverse the mistakes of this year and next. Just be sure not to fall for the glib promises that the conservative sounding democrat in NY's 23rd made and immediately reversed when elected. Ah, but he began waffling, he explained, a few weeks before the election – if you could detect the prominent odour of Maple Syrup amongst the tidbits of slimy, liberally encrusted anecdotes used in the election.

      One really wishes that the moniker "politician" was not so often synonymous with meretricious cockroach.

    21. Vallejo, Ca. says:

      History ! I'll not waste viewers time on a History Lesson. Anyone over 60 years of age know this whole problem(s) began in the late fifties or early sixties. When we started honering people who were out to change the constitution when we the people voted to take prayer from our basic foundation of education. Our schools placed it in to motion.It now has advanced to it's not the "N" thing to do. If we place God in Our Lives as our Foundes did, we could handle all our problems. With No Foundation to believe in or Build upon, you make it Impossible to be Free American, reguardless of Race,Creed or Color. God help us turn this around be fore it's too late !

    22. Richard Cancemi, Arl says:

      Through neglect and complacency on the part of citizens, our country has been drifting towards Marxism for decades.

      The ONLY good thing about the current government is that it has awakened the sleeping giant of the majority of Americans who believe in Jeffersonian America, not Marxist Obama World Socialism!

      They denigrate the efforts of these good people because they fear them.

      I hope that the revival of "Americanism" continues and we remember in the next election times to rid our government of the cancer of liberal socialism/progressivism.

      And as for Ken Jarvis, I don't think the USMC will be happy to hear you were one of them. And yes, I did serve my Country as a physician stateside during the early days of Viet Nam!

    23. J. White, retired [c says:

      I sincerely pray that the God above us who knows who love Him, keeps our members of our armed forces safely in His Hands. Keep them safe. dear Lord, inspite of what these cowards in Congress are trying to do by denying them the means to win.

      The cowardly president says that HE?? is uncomfortable with the "concept of winning"?? It is NOT up to him!!! Damn him!

      I am an ardent supporter of our ability to defend ourselves. While this excuse for a president sits in an Office which he never deserved to be in in the first place, his arrogance and that of his fellow democrats place us in danger of falling behind in our ability to defend ourselves and our troops.

      Those set upon destroying the ONLY bastion of freedom in the world are steadily advancing their own weaponry….often copying or stealing OUR ideas….

      Just like the worst Attorney General the USA ever had- Janet Reno-, as with her, may the blood of those killed at Waco be on her sou; and, the same with those who deny our troops what they need to win.

      My greatest regret in life, was failing the physical during Vietnam and not be able to be in our military. I, who am the descendant of European aristocracy/royalty was the first in generations not to serve the nation of his birth.

    24. Ella QUINN N.C. says:

      Yes my husband served in the navy.mr ken jarvas.I wondered how you got your beliefs so mess up after serving in the military.Your beliefs are so far left it is crazy.

    25. Freedom of Speech, T says:

      Mr. J. White,

      Although this special day is for our veterans, your statement is important for all Americans.

      The fact that you were "willing" to serve is all that matters. Patriotic Americans come in all stripes. People who still believe in and love the freedom for which America stands, the greatness that she is, the opportunities she bestows – that is what is important.

      All military members have ever asked for is respect from their fellow Americans. Those of us who served are no better and no worse than our civilian brothers and sisters.

      The most important title one can have is – an American.

      May God ease the pain of so many veterans and families who have lost loved ones.

      Semper Fi

    26. Pingback: Morning Bell: Keeping Up Our End of the Bargain With Those Who Serve

    27. Lynn B. DeSpain says:

      Both the Houses, meaning Congress, under Article 1, section 8. of the Constitution,"The Congress shall….provide for the common defence and general Welfare of the United States.

      To proved and maintain a Navy.

      These people are our public servents, not our leaders. They represent our will, not theirs.

      We all now live in a time when we can take our Declaration of Independence, substitute the name Obama for every reference to the King of England, and the circumstances remain the same.

    28. Dean-Texas/Alaska says:

      173rd Airborne Infantry, Ben Hoa, Republic of Vietnam. 65-66

      Tea Party supporter activist 2009–

    29. Judith in Michigan says:

      Thank You to all of the veterans in this country.

      I have traced my ancestry to the Revolutionary War, and have had relatives in each war from that time to today's conflicts. My son-in-law just returned from his 3rd tour in Iraq. I'm very proud of him and my heritage.

      The most humbling experience in my life was to walk among the grave sites sitting high above Omaha Beach in France. How can anyone forget?

      The administration today couldn't care any less than they do. They look at the military with disdain and contempt. The day will come when the military will be needed to save their sorry behinds, but it will not be able to because they, the cowards in our midst, decimated it. All in the name of social justice, and votes.

    30. Tom Rodberg, Utah says:

      We have the best form of government in the world, however in recent years it has become poluted with too many Republicans and Democrats that appear to be too self serving. Its time to stop voting for incumbants until they start agreeing to term limits, among other issues.

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