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CMR Sitrep
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
Obama's "Universal Service" Threatens National Security

In a July 20, 2008 American Thinker article titled "Obama's Civilian National Security Force," Lee Cary described the elaborate plans of Barack Obama to transform America "into one, giant, community organizer's sandbox at enormous cost to taxpayers."

Mr. Cary, who has personal experience in volunteer community organizing, noted the expansiveness of Obama's "Plan for Universal Voluntary Public Service." Starting on page 59, in small print, the plan amounts to mandated, universal volunteerism-a contradiction in terms. The ultimate purpose is to convert Americans' current volunteer spirit and efforts into what Cary described as "cogs in a gigantic government machine grinding out [Obama's] social re-engineering agenda."

Essentially, Obama would co-opt Americans' present volunteerism and coerce additional "service." Not only would this mean dramatic increases in spending for new government-sponsored "volunteer" programs, it also would inculcate in its participants the notion that they owe volunteerism and service to the government, and the government likewise owes them something in return. The perpetuation of such a concept would actually erode and endanger true volunteerism and public service by tainting the motivation behind civic-mindedness. The expectation that service should result in some tangible reward weakens a sense of duty.

The tradition of "service as its own reward" is nowhere more important than in our military, which depends on volunteers who have a strong belief in country and freedom, and service to both before self.

The fiscal consequences of Obama's service program demand scrutiny, but Obama's plans extend further than simply adding new government programs. His inversion of the incentives that underpin our nation's institutions, especially the military's, threaten to redefine traditional notions of volunteerism and service. Regardless of who wins the election today, Americans need to soberly and seriously consider proposed plans for universal national service.

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Interested readers, including members of the military, are invited to comment through the "Confidential Contact" site on this website, Nothing in the CMR SITREP Blog is intended to aid or hinder elections or the passage of legislation before Congress.
posted by CMR Editor @ 11/04/2008 05:31:00 PM

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