Meta-Blog

SEARCH QandO

Email:
Jon Henke
Bruce "McQ" McQuain
Dale Franks
Bryan Pick
Billy Hollis
Lance Paddock
MichaelW

BLOGROLL QandO

 
 
Recent Posts
The Ayers Resurrection Tour
Special Friends Get Special Breaks
One Hour
The Hope and Change Express - stalled in the slow lane
Michael Steele New RNC Chairman
Things that make you go "hmmmm"...
Oh yeah, that "rule of law" thing ...
Putting Dollar Signs in Front Of The AGW Hoax
Moving toward a 60 vote majority?
Do As I Say ....
 
 
QandO Newsroom

Newsroom Home Page

US News

US National News
Politics
Business
Science
Technology
Health
Entertainment
Sports
Opinion/Editorial

International News

Top World New
Iraq News
Mideast Conflict

Blogging

Blogpulse Daily Highlights
Daypop Top 40 Links

Regional

Regional News

Publications

News Publications

 
The usual "it is worse than ever and it is Bush’s fault" story
Posted by: mcq on Thursday, August 16, 2007

It is as predictable as sunrise:
Army soldiers committed suicide last year at the highest rate in 26 years, and more than a quarter did so while serving in Iraq and Afghanistan, according to a new military report.

The report, obtained by The Associated Press ahead of its scheduled release Thursday, found there were 99 confirmed suicides among active duty soldiers during 2006, up from 88 the previous year and the highest number since the 102 suicides in 1991 at the time of the Persian Gulf War.

The suicide rate for the Army has fluctuated over the past 26 years, from last year's high of 17.3 per 100,000 to a low of 9.1 per 100,000 in 2001.
99.

Naturally, a certain segement of the blogosphere falls right in line:
I blame President Bush. Every day he keeps our soldiers in this war, more of them are going to die. The ones that survive will come back with post-traumatic stress disorders that will take years if not decades to overcome. Some of them are bound to take their own lives as well.
But, as James Joyner points out:
We had more suicides in 1991, the year of the first Gulf War, than in 2006. Granted, that was in a significantly larger Army. Still, the combat stress level was significantly lower then than now, owing to the much shorter deployment and the fact that the enemy was easily identifiable. For that matter, there was a 26% increase in active-duty suicides from 1997 to 1999, during the Clinton administration.
Additionally he points to some calculations by Marc Danziger:
Marc Danziger, whose son has recently enlisted in the military, has done some calculations and found that the Army suicide rate, even at this peak, is actually lower than for their civilian cohorts. That’s interesting indeed and speaks to the Army’s vetting process and support system.
All to say that while unfortunate, it's not the story some would like it to be. I just got off the phone with MG Rick Lynch, commander of the 3rd ID in Iraq (more on that later), and his closing comment concerned the "broken army meme", which this type story tends to support. As he said, "not the Army I'm in." And he went on to point out that this last week, all at one time, they reenlisted 134 soldiers, right there in Iraq.
 
TrackBacks
Return to Main Blog Page
 
 

Previous Comments to this Post 

Comments
Oddly enough, I got into an argument over this exact same subject on another blog, some time ago. It was contended by a poster there that Bush was responsible for an inordinately high suicide rate in the American military. Hogwash, of course. Unfortunately I didn’t keep a record of the sites I referred to then, but it was easy enough to shoot down that argument.





 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
All to say that while unfortunate, it’s not the story some would like it to be.

I think you would have been wiser to leave off the modifying words, "while unfortunate," McQ. If the sentence had just read, "All to say that it’s not the story some would like it to be," it would actually have come across as less heartless than it does when you include the pro forma "while unfortunate." We all know what "while unfortunate" means. It means "not a big deal" or "much ado about nothing." No one uses the word "unfortunate" when they are really concerned or distressed about something.
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
No one uses the word "unfortunate" when they are really concerned or distressed about something.
While unfortunate, it is not surprising that Kathy writes such an ignorant statement.
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
I have been noticing thru out the entire war in Afghanistan and Iraq. When ever the MSM talks about the enemy troops, who have seen combat, they are battle hardened. When ever they talk about our troops, who have seen combat, they are worn out and broken.
 
Written By: SkyWatch
URL: http://
While unfortunate, it is not surprising that Kathy writes such an ignorant statement.

Now that is an appropriate use of the word "unfortunate." You believe my statement to be ignorant, and you conclude that my ignorance is unfortunate. But, now, if record-high numbers of suicides in the Army are also "unfortunate," that means that an "ignorant" statement and the suicides of 99 human beings, with parents and siblings and friends who love them, are equivalent.

Thank you for proving my point.
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
But, now, if record-high numbers of suicides
But they aren’t "record high".
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
that means that an "ignorant" statement and the suicides of 99 human beings, with parents and siblings and friends who love them, are equivalent.
Wow, that has got to be one of the worst attempts at logic I have seen in a long time.

Many things are unfortunate. Nowhere in any definition would they be equally unfortunate.

You have now made two really stupid claims. Are you always this simplistic, or are you just trying to troll?
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
JWG, no it is just Kathy’s turn to troll this blog. Move On and all of the other Liberal Narrative true believers have rotating troll assignments and this week Kathy is on the list and has drawn QandO. You can see the list embedded within a video cartoon at "AreYouStupid.com"


/snark
 
Written By: SShiell
URL: http://
Actually, JWG, I am trying to make the point that the word "unfortunate" does not adequately convey the tragedy of U.S. Army soldiers killing themselves in record numbers.

I am trying to make the point that suicide — whether it’s in the general population OR in the military — is tragic and horrifying and terrible; not "unfortunate" — and that there are reasons for it, and we should identify them and do something about them.

I am trying to make the point that, instead of rationalizing the high numbers and trivializing the seriousness of suicide as an issue in the U.S. Army in this war, you should be taking it seriously when 99 soldiers kill themselves in one year, especially when that’s 10 more than killed themselves the previous year. You know, it’s called "supporting the troops." Keep your cute little yellow plastic bracelets and your bumper stickers and car magnets that assure everyone that you "support the troops" — and instead do something utterly unique and original:

ACTUALLY SUPPORT THE TROOPS.



 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
Maybe this will help...


Dictionary.com Unabridged (v 1.1) - Cite This Source

un·for·tu·nate /ʌnˈfɔrtʃənɪt/ Pronunciation Key - Show Spelled Pronunciation[uhn-fawr-chuh-nit] Pronunciation Key - Show IPA Pronunciation
–adjective

1. suffering from bad luck: an unfortunate person.
2. unfavorable or inauspicious: an unfortunate beginning.
3. regrettable or deplorable: an unfortunate remark.
4. marked by or inviting misfortune: an unfortunate development.
5. lamentable; sad: the unfortunate death of her parents.
 
Written By: Ody
URL: http://
ACTUALLY SUPPORT THE TROOPS.
Perhaps you should ask yourself if the troops want you brand of support.

Anyone in the military the doesn’t know it might be slightly dangerous is retarded. They don’t want or need your "protection". So either stand behind them, or stand infront of them.

I call my plan "Project: Ablative Meatshield"...
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
We all know what you mean now when you use the word "unfortunate" Kathy, thank you. How you projected that to McQ, well....

Generally adults are able to recognize that we can regret something occurring without getting theatric. We sometimes say things like "I’m sorry to hear of about your loss" when we don’t actually know the person who suffered the loss, or the person who they lost, but nevertheless we manage to express actual regret without hand wringing, rending of garments, wailing, and gnashing of teeth to show that we’re ’sincere’. More than likely you’ve done this yourself.

This is because most adults also recognize that if it hasn’t directly had an effect on us personally that hand wringing, rending of garments, wailing, and gnashing of teeth and behavior of the like is over-the-top, inappropriate, and more than likely indicative of utter insincerity.

But, I’m sure the lefty bloggers McQ was talking about were right. You can bet that every soldier who committed suicide’s last thought was akin to "that b@stard Bush! Damn his unjust Iraqi war!".
Don’t even begin to think that by attriubting this statistic to Bush and his war that they are trivializing the reasons the these soldiers probably thought they had when they ended their own lives.

 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
This isn’t news - the (antebellum) Iraqi Information Minister, fearless defender of the truth (or something like it,) knew it all along.
 
Written By: James O
URL: http://
Also, many suicides in the military are "impropperly" recorded as training accidents and the like, out of respect for the dead.

And because the survivors - I believe - get more money.
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
Actually, JWG, I am trying to make the point that the word "unfortunate" does not adequately convey the tragedy of U.S. Army soldiers killing themselves in record numbers.
To you. To me the word more than adequately covers it, thank you very much.

And why the focus on that quibble instead of the point of the post?
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
Kathy says -

But, now, if record-high numbers of suicides in the Army
JWG replies -
But they aren’t "record high".
Kathy then writes -
the tragedy of U.S. Army soldiers killing themselves in record numbers.
Read for comprehension Kathy...

Also -
I am trying to make the point that suicide — whether it’s in the general population OR in the military — is tragic and horrifying and terrible; not "unfortunate" — and that there are reasons for it, and we should identify them and do something about them.
I believe suicide is tragic and horrifying AND unfortunate. What do you want to ’do’ that is not already being done? The sad reality is, people kill themselves. They always have. There are any number of things they can do before reaching the decision they want to die. But sometimes, they just choose what they believe to be the easiest path.

And that, is unfortunate.
 
Written By: meagain
URL: http://
JWG replies -
But they aren’t "record high".
Not to pick nits, but that was me, not JWG
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
Ooh. Deja Vu. In the argument I referred to in my first comment, the response to my links and charts showing that the charge was nonsense was also an unfortunate attack on my sensitivity and compassion. Great minds think alike, as they say.

I have been looking, but cannot find the site(s) I used. Google doesn’t love me anymore! Probably because I am not sensitive enough.
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
Anyone in the military the doesn’t know it might be slightly dangerous is retarded.

Soldiers don’t commit suicide because the work is "slightly dangerous." If you don’t know that, you’re ignorant and stupid.

What do you want to ’do’ that is not already being done?

Mental health and psychological support services for soldiers who have returned home are appallingly inadequate. Seriously depressed and/or suicidal soldiers are often not taken seriously or are even actively thought to be "faking." And that belief is communicated to them, obviously.

Tours of duty that last 15 months are much too long. The combat fatigue/burnout factor in this war is enormous. Making soldiers serve continuously for 15 months and then saying everything that can be done for them is being done is outrageous. Policies that actually turn up the stress and the risk of burnout rather than alleviating it are prescriptions for suicide.

There are any number of things they can do before reaching the decision they want to die.


Like what, given that support services are practically nonexistent, and given that the official attitude within the military (as amply demonstrated by the comments here) is unsympathetic at best?

To me the word more than adequately covers it, thank you very much.

Yes, I gathered that.

And why the focus on that quibble instead of the point of the post?

I’m more than happy to focus on the point of the post, which was that suicidal soldiers in the military are no big deal and much ado about nothing.

The reason I focused on the word "unfortunate" is because that is the word war supporters always use for terrible war-related events that they don’t want to deal with or acknowledge the seriousness of. When a suicide bomber blows himself up in a marketplace, and dozens of people are killed, do you call that "unfortunate"?

This is because most adults also recognize that if it hasn’t directly had an effect on us personally that hand wringing, rending of garments, wailing, and gnashing of teeth and behavior of the like is over-the-top, inappropriate, and more than likely indicative of utter insincerity.

I don’t necessarily equate profound sadness and distress with "hand-wringing, rending of garments, wailing, and gnashing of teeth." There is a distinction to be made between that, and a near-total lack of concern or compassion, which is what I discern here.

I do think it’s true, though, that most adults do not, or cannot, feel or recognize the seriousness or significance of particular hardships or tragedies unless and until they have experienced it themselves.

In fact, I pretty much know that to be true. It’s the rare person who can understand or feel the pain of experiences they have not had.

 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
In fact, I pretty much know that to be true. It’s the rare person who can understand or feel the pain of experiences they have not had.
Then I’ll step into the minefield and ask if you’ve experienced it.

But to blame Bush personally for all this, though usual, is also, as usual, a bit much. Cindy Sheehan style, but it’s not all Bush’s fault.
That view was the cause for this excercise.

You can divert the point of McQ’s post with assuming he doesn’t give a rat’s @ss about serving members of the Army and veterans of same, but somehow I would find that hard to believe given his former life-long profession.

 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
One fourth of them in Iraq and Afghanistan?

So what’s the reason for the other 3/4ths?
 
Written By: Sharpshooter
URL: http://
I find myself wondering why Kathy has nothing at all to say on the foul-mouthed FDL post, but is whacked out at McQ for not seeming (to her, with her classic liberal sensitivity and all - which must be paraded in front of these infidels, you see, even if it requires...- well, you get my point) sympathetic enough about troop suicides.

Wait a minute! I’ve answered my own question!
 
Written By: notherbob2
URL: http://
I’m more than happy to focus on the point of the post, which was that suicidal soldiers in the military are no big deal and much ado about nothing.
Ah, now you’re a mind reader as well. Unfortunately (there’s that word again), Kathy, that’s not the point of the post.
Tours of duty that last 15 months are much too long.
Are they? How ever did we get through WWII with tours that lasted "the duration"? I had a grandfather who served in the 3rd ID from the time it landed in Africa, up through Italy and into Germany when the war ended. That was a normal tour of duty then.
The combat fatigue/burnout factor in this war is enormous.
Really? I assume you can back that claim up with more than your statement.
I do think it’s true, though, that most adults do not, or cannot, feel or recognize the seriousness or significance of particular hardships or tragedies unless and until they have experienced it themselves.

In fact, I pretty much know that to be true. It’s the rare person who can understand or feel the pain of experiences they have not had.
Really? Well let me ask you then, would 28 years as an infantryman qualify as having had enough experience to "understand"? Because that’s my background.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
Instapundit point this out:
In 2006, the overall suicide rate for the United States was 13.4 per 100,000 people. It was 21.1 per 100,000 people for all men aged 17 to 45, compared to a rate of 17.8 for men in the Army.
So the rate of suicide is actually much lower than the general populace. So Kathy dear, stick that somewhere.

 
Written By: capt joe on the road
URL: http://
Mental health and psychological support services for soldiers who have returned home are appallingly inadequate. Seriously depressed and/or suicidal soldiers are often not taken seriously or are even actively thought to be "faking." And that belief is communicated to them, obviously.
Proof please.

It not once occured to you that the psyc care is actually very good, and that suicidal soldiers are refusing to get help?

And I’ll join the rest who are pointing out that there is a HUGE difference between the average american’s suicide rate, and the military’s suicide rate.

The military’s is lower. Dispite the absolute free access to a means by which to commit suicide (bullet to the brain).
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
"The combat fatigue/burnout factor in this war is enormous."
Kathy is relying on the Liberal Narrative here. She has absolutely no (none, zero, bupkis) FACTS to back this up. Because there are none; none that is, other than the Narrative. This actually means that she is a liar. Is that not the definition of a liar; making contentions that are not backed up by factual material? Saying that x-many liberals also believe this contention does not, unfortunately, make it a fact. Kathy is, like most liberals, fact-challenged.

What actually is enormous, Kathy, is your ignorance.
 
Written By: &amp
URL: http://
What actually is enormous, Kathy, is your ignorance.
Yeah, but she supports the troops! Heh!
 
Written By: SShiell
URL: http://
Then I’ll step into the minefield and ask if you’ve experienced it.

Yes I have. Do you think I would have written that sentence if I hadn’t?

Well let me ask you then, would 28 years as an infantryman qualify as having had enough experience to "understand"? Because that’s my background.


It should, in theory.

It not once occured to you that the psyc care is actually very good, and that suicidal soldiers are refusing to get help?

No, because your statement is untrue.
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
According to Kathy’s logic, the word "tragic" can no longer be used to describe anything more serious than someone being fired since she wrote a letter to the Edwards campaign back in February concerning Amanda Marcotte and Melissa McEwen stating:
It’s tragic, what you’ve done. Not sad, tragic.
Please tell us, Kathy, how someone as morally and emotionally superior as yourself can equate the firing of bloggers to other incidents you also deemed "tragic". It’s YOUR logic, so explain it.

Clearly, you are either trolling or you are monumentally stupid.
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
Well let me ask you then, would 28 years as an infantryman qualify as having had enough experience to "understand"? Because that’s my background.
It should, in theory.
It’s your theory - so why do you sound so unsure?

Face it Kathy, you blew this one to high heaven. You came in and quibbled about a word based on some false assumptions and now find yourself in the uncomfortable position of having to defend those assumptions.

But before we forget:
The combat fatigue/burnout factor in this war is enormous.
Any factual data to back this assertion yet?

 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
No, because your statement is untrue.
You go right ahead believing that Kathy.

I mean, it couldn’t explain why the military has a lower suicide rate than the equivilant American population. Again, how do you explain the fact that it’s lower when there is 100% unrestricted access to a perfectly valid means of killing yourself?

A method that males tend to prefer...
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
Yes I have. Do you think I would have written that sentence if I hadn’t?
Well, since I knew McQ’s credentials it seemed only fair to inquire about yours, so, frankly, no I couldn’t be sure that you had any experience in this.
This is the internet - anyone can pretty much claim anything.

And I still insist that it’s a gross trivialization of a person’s reasons for ending their life to lay it all on George Bush.
That was part of the point of the post.

You’re assuming an awful lot about McQ I think, based on the choice of a single word.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
What does a smart [as opposed to sheeple Kathy] liberal have to say?
”Man, People Are So Gullible...
By Armed Liberal ...as long as the things they are gullible about confirm their prejudices.

[Unlike Kathy, he compares real statistics] ...is this a symptom of a military so brutalized by the horrors of service that they are killing themselves at an incredible rate?
What do you believe I think? Why can’t people do some freaking homework before the leap to the Isle of Conclusion - that’s what I think.”
 
Written By: &amp
URL: http://
It’s your theory - so why do you sound so unsure?

I’m not unsure. The sentence above would only sound "unsure" to someone who is completely lacking in the ability to pick up irony. I shouldn’t be surprised, but I am.

What does a smart [as opposed to sheeple Kathy] liberal have to say?

Just because he calls himself "armed liberal" doesn’t mean he’s a liberal. I’ve read that post. He’s not a liberal.

Or, put another way: Just because he shares your position does not mean he’s not a "sheeple." He’s just *your* sheeple.

You’re assuming an awful lot about McQ I think, based on the choice of a single word.


Not true. I base my conclusions about McQ’s (and everyone’s here) level of concern about high and increasing rates of suicide in the military based on everything he wrote in this post, and the things he did NOT write as well. I also take into consideration McQ’s writing in general — I can be reasonably sure from reading the body of McQ’s work over time that his belief in the rightness of the Iraq war and occupation is much more important to him than any concern he might have about suicides in the military.

Any factual data to back this assertion yet?


Mcq, of *course*! It’s all around you. There has been, and is, an abundance of articles, interviews, books, etc., over the last few years about combat fatigue and burnout in this war, and how it’s been mishandled by the Bush administration. There is no way you could even ask me if I have "any factual data" to back up "this assertion" if you had been making even a minimal effort to keep up with the news. How could what I say here possibly make a difference? I could list the articles and detail the information out there, but if you are so badly informed as to not even know of its existence, listing it for you here would not change your mind or even affect your thinking.

I am 100% sincere in this. I am NOT trying to be snarky. I really believe that anyone who asks if there is "any factual data" to back up the assertion that combat fatigue is extremely high in this war is too unwilling to open his eyes to be convinced by anything.

 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
I really believe that anyone who asks if there is "any factual data" to back up the assertion that combat fatigue is extremely high in this war is too unwilling to open his eyes to be convinced by anything.
There is a reason most of the commentors on this blog think you are full of sh*t! Nobody comes into this blog and makes unsubstantiated claims without being challenged. Nobody! Go ask a certain PhD from the University of Maine who trolls here regularly - Erb - and ask him how he is received. His expertise is only what he can back up. And in your case you haven’t backed up a single claim or statement!

I have checked and seen a lot of handwaving and moaning and groaning from the left about the "broken" military and all that assorted crap. But I have yet to see anything to back it up - like facts or such. No facts that can stand up to any scrutiny, like this Washington Post article. And hearing bufoons like Murtha, Reid, Pelosi, Kerry or Durbin make unsubstantiated claims falls in the same category. So yes, you may be able to point to all sorts of articles and opinions and such but until you back it up with hard data, you are no better than those bufoons.

To be honest you may actually be right as rain in this instance but rather than the hand-waving requirements you maintain on your own blog, here most people back up their statements or they are thrown to the dogs - where they belong. So, Kathy, put up or shut up!
 
Written By: SShiell
URL: http://
There is some difference between " articles, interviews, books, etc., " and factual data. Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland is a book. Jesse Macbeth gave interviews. At least there is a difference to some of us.

"...his belief in the rightness of the Iraq war and occupation is much more important to him than any concern he might have about suicides in the military"
"I could list the articles and detail the information out there, but if you are so badly informed as to not even know of its existence, listing it for you here would not change your mind or even affect your thinking."
"... too unwilling to open his eyes to be convinced by anything."
"I am NOT trying to be snarky."

Well, McQ, I am sure you are comforted in that she is not being snarky by calling you an ignorant, prejudiced, and insensitive.
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
I’m not unsure. The sentence above would only sound "unsure" to someone who is completely lacking in the ability to pick up irony. I shouldn’t be surprised, but I am.
You obviously missed the irony in the question. I guess I should have used a smiley face or an "[/irony]" marker since I was having a bit of fun poking at your ’unfortunate’ quibble. Apparently a little too nuanced for you.
I base my conclusions about McQ’s (and everyone’s here) level of concern about high and increasing rates of suicide in the military based on everything he wrote in this post, and the things he did NOT write as well.
Yes, we call that basing your conclusions on false assumptions, or, a ’strawman argument’ where I come from. The fact that you imputed motive with no basis in fact, doesn’t mean you are at all correct in your assumptions and resultant claims.
Mcq, of *course*! It’s all around you. There has been, and is, an abundance of articles, interviews, books, etc., over the last few years about combat fatigue and burnout in this war, and how it’s been mishandled by the Bush administration.
Oh this is a cute dodge. One more time - you made a specific assertion, i.e. "The combat fatigue/burnout factor in this war is enormous."

I’ll ask again ... do you have any data to back that assertion? For instance, I know the "combat fatigue" factor for the US Army in WWII was 8.9% (that’s a fact found in Max Hasting’s book "Armageddon: The Battle for Germany, 1944-1945", 2004, Alfred A. Knopf, pg 184). In fact, in his notes at the end of the book, he cites 5 studies he consulted to get the number.

That’s data. That is how you support such an assertion.

"Enormous" means nothing in that regard. Nor claims that oodles and gobs have been written about it.

So again, have you any data to support your assertion?
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
" Go ask a certain PhD from the University of Maine who trolls here regularly - Erb"

Oh, man! Just when I was getting my appetite back. Thanks a bunch. Couldn’t you have at least been a little more indirect?
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
Seriously, who wants to join me in attending one of his talks, just to heckle?
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
I think that we should ease up on Kathy on humanitarian grounds. She has obviously been under the thrall of the Liberal Narrative for so long that she has entirely lost touch with the world of actual fact. Locating one of them is probably a skill long lost in the miasma of all of the wonderful nonsense that makes up the Narrative, which makes up "facts" (such as the enormous rate of PTSD) or desregards them entirely in order to provide its remarkably clear dogma.

She is a victim.
 
Written By: &amp
URL: http://
Oh, man! Just when I was getting my appetite back. Thanks a bunch. Couldn’t you have at least been a little more indirect?
Sorry, timactual, I couldn’t help myself. I owe you a steak - when you get your appetite back - that is if you aren’t a vegetarian!
 
Written By: SShiell
URL: http://
So again, have you any data to support your assertion?

Sigh. Okay, FINE. Here’s one from July, 2004:

http://www.boston.com/news/nation/articles/2004/07/01/mental_toll_on_troops_detailed/

Here’s one from 2006:

http://www.courant.com/news/specials/hc-mental1a.artmay14,0,6150281.story

Here’s one from 2007:

http://heyetnet.org/en/content/view/1415/36/

Would you like me to send more? I’ll send as many links as you want me to.


So again, have you any data to support your assertion?


Sure, the "put up or shut up" approach is an effective debating tactic, even when one knows that "putting up" will make no difference whatsoever.

So now it’s your turn. Prove to me that I’m right, as I already know you will.

Yes, we call that basing your conclusions on false assumptions, or, a ’strawman argument’ where I come from. The fact that you imputed motive with no basis in fact, doesn’t mean you are at all correct in your assumptions and resultant claims.

Well, in that case, I stand corrected. I am glad to hear that you share my outrage at how serious the problem of psychological and emotional disorders are among soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan, including higher than usual and increasing numbers of suicides. I’m glad to hear you agree that, in spite of a lot of lip service, almost nothing is being done to help these men and women, and that soldiers and veterans suffering from serious post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, and suicidal ideation are slipping through the cracks, and being abandoned and ignored by the same government that sends them over there to die.

I really can’t point to anything in your post that made me believe you *didn’t* feel this way, or that you were minimizing or trivializing or denying the problem. I apologize for misunderstanding your position.

By the way, how much are those yellow bracelets? I like the idea of having an easy, no-effort way to support the troops.
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
17.8 is less than 21.1, no matter what.

Suffice it to say, Kathy, you think Majikthise is a serious source of analysis, from looking at your blog. So, uh, what more is there to say?

(Then again, hell, you think a one-year 10% increase is more than statistical noise when the total set size is only 100 out of nearly 3/4 million.

I mean, the hell?*)

(* Note that neither of these examples is an example of argumentum ad hominem, since they provide reasons to think you’re daft, rather than asserting that you’re wrong because of some unrelated quality.)
 
Written By: Sigivald
URL: http://
Suffice it to say, Kathy, you think Majikthise is a serious source of analysis, from looking at your blog. So, uh, what more is there to say?

ROFL!!! McQ, Sigivald beatcha to it, lol! :-)

(Then again, hell, you think a one-year 10% increase is more than statistical noise when the total set size is only 100 out of nearly 3/4 million.


Oh no, no, no, Sigivald, you’ve got me all wrong. I don’t think of suicidal soldiers as "statistical noise." When I think about that veteran who killed himself in northern Minnesota recently, for example? It doesn’t occur to me to think about him in terms of "statistical noise." What I actually think about is his family. His father and his mother and his brothers and sisters. I think about a post I wrote after that veteran (23 years old) killed himself that drew responses from a couple of people who actually knew him. One I think was his best friend. That’s what I think about. Statistical noise is really far from my mind at moments like that.
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
You simply don’t know what you’re talking about, Kathy.

Again, you said:
"The combat fatigue/burnout factor in this war is enormous."
Combat fatigue is not "PTSD" which is what all your links refer too (and I really liked the one about the Brits ... that applies well to the US military). As you might imagine, "combat fatigue" has to do with combat, not post-combat.

That was the point of my questioning your assertion and I knew you’d eventually try to pass off PTSD as "combat fatigue". Sorry, no sale.
Combat stress reaction, in the past commonly known as shell shock or battle fatigue, is a military term used to categorize a range of behaviours resulting from the stress of battle which decrease the combatant’s fighting efficiency.
No one is denying mental health problems or PTSD.

What you’re being asked to support is your assertion that there are "enormous" amounts of "combat fatigue". You can’t.

And in case you still want to try to equate them, save your breath:
Throughout wars but notably during the Vietnam War there has been a conflict amongst doctors about sending distressed soldiers back to combat. During the Vietnam War this reached a peak with much discussion about the ethics of this process. Proponents of the PIE principles argue that it leads to a reduction of long-term disability but opponents argue that combat stress reactions lead to long-term problems such as post traumatic stress disorder.
They are separate problems. And you aren’t going to find any data or cites which supports your contention that there is "enormous" levels of "combat fatigue/burnout in this war".

That’s why you were called on it.

So I’d say, to this point, you are oh for everything concerning "combat fatigue" and your assertion is unfounded nonsense.
I am glad to hear that you share my outrage at how serious the problem of psychological and emotional disorders are among soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan, including higher than usual and increasing numbers of suicides.
And I’m satisfied you still don’t understand the term "false assumption" or where they can lead you although you continue to exhibit enough examples of such flawed thinking that even the slowest among us should be able to learn the lesson involved.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
Combat fatigue is not "PTSD" which is what all your links refer too (and I really liked the one about the Brits ... that applies well to the US military). As you might imagine, "combat fatigue" has to do with combat, not post-combat.

I know what combat fatigue is. It’s when you get tired of seeing corpses and human body parts hanging from trees. Of course it only happens in combat. And as soon as the soldiers are not in combat anymore, and/or have gotten a good, solid night’s sleep, the combat fatigue is gone.

As for post-traumatic stress disorder, there is absolutely no connection between that disorder and combat fatigue. When PTSD happens to soldiers who have been in combat, it happens because they have been in combat and have seen bad things happen in combat, but it has nothing to do with combat fatigue. As I noted above, combat fatigue is about getting sleepy when you see corpses and body parts and it’s strictly temporary — goes away as soon the soldier is back in barracks.

PTSD is a reliving of unpleasant experiences a soldier has had in combat, and combat fatigue is sleepiness or exhaustion caused by unpleasant experiences in combat, but they are not related except that they both are caused by things that happen in combat. PTSD happens after combat is over, and combat fatigue happens only during combat and is gone as soon as combat is over. Combat fatigue is just simple physical exhaustion, cured by rest. It has no psychological or mental health component AT ALL. And besides, how could they be related if PTSD happens after combat and combat fatigue happens in combat? Soldiers suffering from combat fatigue don’t get PTSD, and soldiers with PTSD are not combat-fatigued. So that’s why the two (PTSD and combat fatigue) are compleely separate and unrelated things.

It’s important to be precise about these things.

Well, okay, I have to go now. I have a pin waiting for me in my office and I have set myself the task of figuring out how many angels can dance on its head.

See ya later!

P.S. I forgot to mention: About that Brit thing: The Brits are different. I mean, war affects them differently. They are anatomically different, if you know what I mean. Anyway, they are not U.S. citizens, so you can’t use combat fatigue and PTSD rates in British soldiers to discuss the incidence of combat fatigue and PTSD in U.S. soldiers. Brits and Americans are two different nationalities for goodness sake.
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
I know what combat fatigue is.
No.

You don’t.

That’s the point.

You certainly pretended you did, but with every attempt at rebuttal it became more and more obvious you didn’t. And your "evidence" finally removed all doubt.

Next time you choose to blow in somewhere and throw around terms you don’t understand and lecture people you don’t know remember this. It might temper your unfounded arrogance just a bit.
P.S. I forgot to mention: About that Brit thing: The Brits are different.
P.S. I asked for data to support your assertion about the US military ... or did you miss that?
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
I have a pin waiting for me in my office and I have set myself the task of figuring out how many angels can dance on its head.
Kathy, first you ran away from your own logic and refused to explain how firing a blogger is equivalent to a person being killed.

Now you are trying to argue that the clinical differences between combat fatigue and PTSD are irrelevant.

You definition of "critical thinking" must be breathtaking.
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
I have a pin waiting for me in my office and I have set myself the task of figuring out how many angels can dance on its head.
Good. Therapy of that sort can be quite effective and subjects like that are certainly more appropriate to your intellect!
 
Written By: SShiell
URL: http://
Now you are trying to argue that the clinical differences between combat fatigue and PTSD are irrelevant.

No. You are trying to argue that a mental health problem and one of its major causes are different entities, like apples and lampshades.

To wit:

No one is denying mental health problems or PTSD.

What you’re being asked to support is your assertion that there are "enormous" amounts of "combat fatigue". You can’t.

Implying, in other words, that mental health problems and PTSD (which, by the way, CAN become symptomatic in combat situations) ARE real and serious problems in the military, but combat fatigue is not.

That’s like arguing that lung cancer is a serious problem, but smoking is not. Two separate things.

Obviously, you’re doing this so you don’t have to admit that combat fatigue is a significant problem among U.S. troops in Iraq — which proposition is an absolute no-brainer. There was an article about it just the other day in — I think — the New York Times, and I’ve seen any number of articles about it and have seen it commented on by people with relatives in the military. I would bet that it’s even been discussed as a serious issue within the military.

Rather than admit your position is untenable, you will go through leaps of illogic that are absurd on their very face. Like this quote:

"Throughout wars but notably during the Vietnam War there has been a conflict amongst doctors about sending distressed soldiers back to combat. During the Vietnam War this reached a peak with much discussion about the ethics of this process. Proponents of the PIE principles argue that it leads to a reduction of long-term disability but opponents argue that combat stress reactions lead to long-term problems such as post traumatic stress disorder."

which you bizarrely believe *proves* your point, rather than undercutting your point, which is what that quote actually does. Obviously, if (a) combat stress (a synonym for combat fatigue) is a major risk factor for posttraumatic stress disorder; and (b) it is agreed that posttraumatic stress disorder exists and is a serious problem in the military (as well as in other areas of life, of course), then it clearly follows that combat stress, aka combat fatigue, is a serious problem in the Iraq war. Really, there is no war situation that includes extended periods of combat in which combat stress or fatigue is NOT a serious problem. They just go together. Military leadership can alleviate it or manage it either better or worse, but it’s not going to go away.

Your blind refusal to acknowledge a widely reported and recognized phenomenon resulting from the Iraq war and the way it’s been managed is only matched (and I would say exceeded) by your monumental condescension and arrogance in telling me I don’t know what I’m talking about. You need to take the blinders off your eyes.
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
Implying, in other words, that mental health problems and PTSD (which, by the way, CAN become symptomatic in combat situations) ARE real and serious problems in the military, but combat fatigue is not.
Can’t you get anything right?

You claimed "combat fatigue" was an "enormous problem". I asked you for data to back up your claim. You instead gave cites for PTSD, which you acknowledged later, wasn’t the same thing.

I "implied" nothing other than a) you didn’t know what you were talking about when you used the term "combat fatigue" and b) you had no data to back your assertion.

And despite deploying a school of red herrings and enough strawmen to populate a small city, that remains the case.

So you can continue to project, impute motive and pretend you didn’t say what you said until your fingers bleed, but the fact remains I was correct to challenge your assertion and you’ve still provided nothing to back it but an incredible amount of irrelevant BS and psychobable.

Period. Full stop.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
I was wrong about that recent New York Times article. It was an article by Peter Beaumont of the British paper "The Observer."

I’m anticipating your argument that "The Observer" is a left-wing communist paper and all the quotes and interviews were made up and everything in it is a lie, but you know that old saw about leading a horse to water...
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
Sorry, forgot to put in the link:

http://observer.guardian.co.uk/world/story/0,,2147052,00.html
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
If you decide to delete this, I hope you’ll at least read it and think about it.

At least I’m not the only one who is under the impression that combat stress and PTSD are related. CNN does, too. Here they mention combat stress and PTSD in the same article, as if they had something to do with each other.

http://www.cnn.com/2004/HEALTH/07/01/post.traumatic.stress/index.html

Here’s an article from the Boston Globe about civilian contractors coming home with the same combat-related mental health problems that U.S. troops are afflicted with. Are combat-related mental health problems a sign of combat stress? Or is it something else about combat, and not the stress, that creates the mental health problems.

I’m really trying to understand where you’re coming from here.

Here’s a BBC article that says combat stress is common in war. Who knew? The article also connects posttraumatic stress disorder with combat stress. Apparently, combat stress leads to PTSD. And the PTSD induced by the stress of combat has long-term effects. Do you think that’s true? If so, isn’t it valid to discuss combat stress and PTSD as not just related, but inextricably connected phenomena?

I’m just trying to pull *some* kind of common sense out of this discussion.

Here’s a 2006 WaPo article about high levels of combat stress among U.S. troops in Iraq who serve multiple tours of duty, and the very first sentence actually links combat stress to PTSD. Amazing, huh?

Here’s a final link, to a Frontline piece about the use of combat stress teams in Iraq. I can’t find a date on the article.

Frontline article link:

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/heart/readings/telemedicine.html

Boston Globe article link:

http://www.boston.com/news/world/articles/2007/07/05/combat_stress_afflicts_civilian_contractors_returning_from_iraq/

BBC article link:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/4124558.stm
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
At least I’m not the only one who is under the impression that combat stress and PTSD are related.
Good lord, woman, quit this while you still have some shred of dignity left, will you?

No one here is going to accept your goalpost shifting.

It is clear to any reader of this thread that you were challenged on a specific point ("combat fatigue" was an "enormous problem") and asked to produce data for the claim.

You didn’t and you haven’t. End of story.

Now, go away and bother someone else, ok?
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
You didn’t and you haven’t.

Actually I have, but I can’t compel you to agree that I have. That’s not within my control.

My dignity is not at risk here. Your insistence that I have not supported my argument does not mean I have not supported my argument. It merely means you are convinced I haven’t. Since I can’t change that conviction, you’re right that it makes no sense to continue the "discussion."

 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
Actually I have, but I can’t compel you to agree that I have. That’s not within my control.
McQ, she is right. She has answered you. But to her it doesn’t matter that her answer amounted to nothing more than her repeating "Neener, Neener, Neener!" over and over again.
 
Written By: SShiell
URL: http://
Actually I have, but I can’t compel you to agree that I have.
Actually you haven’t, regardless of how many times you claim you have. Like the other, the data (or lack thereof) doesn’t support your claim.

The fact you can’t figure that out is telling, and the fact you insist on demonstrating your cluelessness is, frankly, becoming boring.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
"As I noted above, combat fatigue is about getting sleepy when you see corpses and body parts and it’s strictly temporary — goes away as soon the soldier is back in barracks"


??????
"about getting sleepy..."????

" Combat fatigue is just simple physical exhaustion,..."?????

"Soldiers suffering from combat fatigue don’t get PTSD,"

You truly are too ignorant to debate on this issue. Google is your friend. Use it.

"It’s important to be precise about these things."

Agreed.
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://

 
Add Your Comment
  NOTICE: While we don't wish to censor your thoughts, we do blacklist certain terms of profanity or obscenity. This is not to muzzle you, but to ensure that the blog remains work-safe for our readers. If you wish to use profanity, simply insert asterisks (*) where the vowels usually go. Your meaning will still be clear, but our readers will be able to view the blog without worrying that content monitoring will get them in trouble when reading it.
Comments for this entry are closed.
Name:
Email:
URL:
HTML Tools:
Bold Italic Blockquote Hyperlink
Comment:
   
 
Vicious Capitalism

Divider

Buy Dale's Book!
Slackernomics by Dale Franks

Divider

Divider