Any Hope for the American Government?

These days our government has been veering far off from what our founding fathers had wanted. The government is run by the big corporations on Wall St. more than it is run by the citizens of the country. Almost every politician is funded in some way by lobbyists for  big corporations. When these corporations give all this money to their candidates to help get them elected then the corporations have the real power. Then politicians will change their view points during campaigns to tell the voter what they want to hear. Not to mention all these legislations that directly conflict with our Constitution and civil liberties. These are the biggest problems with our sytem of government. As long as these Wall St. corporations keep pumping money into Washington so they get politicians that will give them more money then the system will stay just as messed up. Since the Supreme Court says corporations have the smae rights and are equal to people it will be hard to get them out of politics. Not only do they control the politicians but because of their greed and riskiness/idiocy they caused the greatest financial crisis since the Great Depression and barely got punished. Right now they are doing the same things they were doing before the crisis, so another melt down is not unlikely yo happen again. Luckily we have Ron Paul running for president, and he is picking up steam. He has been in politics for 30 plus years and he is the only politician to have voted consistently on everything. He does not change his views based on what others want to hear. He also is a firm believer in the constitution and civil liberties. Though he is running as a Republican he does not really fit in the two party system, and that is a problem he faces because he does not conform strictly to Republicans or Democrats therefore receiving criticism from both sides. He is the only candidate that does not affiliate with the big corporations because he realizes how bad they are for the government and economy. He is the only canidate with military experience and the only one that wants troops back home, while other candidates are talking about going to war with Iran, yet they have no idea what it is like to spend one day in the military. I could get into more of his platform but it would simply turn into a huge essay, I encourage anyone and everyone to at least do research on his ideas and you will see he is the “common sense” candidate. He was often overlooked and dismissed but with recent polls he is consistenly in the top three and on his way up. He is one of the last honest politicians there is out there. Even when President Obama spoke of change in his campaign he has not achieved it. He is a “status quo” politician that in the end helps Wall St. get money. Only time will tell if Ron Paul gets elected as the next president, and if he does I truly believe it will be good for our government.


Quit Calling Me a Soldier, I’m a Marine

The title of this is self explanatory. Do not get me wrong I respect all the branches of our military, but I do not like when civilians confuse what we as Marines are. We are totally different from anyother branch of the military. The number one thing is we are instilled with a warrior spirit and esprit de corps more than anyother part of the armed service. We seem to take more pride in our Corps than any soldier, sailor, or airman takes in each of their respective branch of service. You can ask, as I have before, someone from these other branches, the date their service was founded and the liklihood they will know off the top of their head is very small. Then ask them where the location that they were founded and that will be truly impressive if they know. This is not like the Marines at all. You can ask any Marine, from the newest Marine out of boot camp to the oldest World War II veteran, the date and place of birth of the Corps, and without hesitation any single one will tell you November 10, 1775 at Tun Tavern in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. We take pride in the entire history of the Corps. We know of imprtant battles that span all the way back to our beginnings. We take pride and feel apart of what Marines in past generations have done, just like Marines of future generations will feel. We are not actually needed by our country, in fact there has been talks many times throughout history to completely get rid of the Marine Corps, yet we are still here. If we aren’t actually needed than why are we around. I can answer that simply, it is because America wants the Marine Corps. Our excellence in battle is what we pride ourselves in more than anything. In the Marines we will send our cooks out to kick in doors. If you ask a soldier what he does he will say something like “I’m a mechanic, or infantryman, or doctor,etc… in the army”. If you ask a Marine what he does he will simply say “I am a Marine” and that will be a good enough explanation for him/her. We take pride in being the smallest of the military services under the Department of Defense. Right now we have just a shade over 200,000 Marines, which is currently in the process of being cut down to about 175,000, as compared to the 2 million plus soldiers in the army. That makes the average quality of Marine out of boot camp better than that of other branches. We have the ability to be very selective in allowing who we will send to boot camp, making our standards just to sign up even higher. Also we take pride in having the longest and most strenuous boot camp. Ours is 13 weeks and the next closes one is the Navy with 10 weeks. If a Marine wants to switch to a different branch of the military he does not have to go through that branches respective boot camp. If a sailor, soldier, or airmen decides later he wants to join the Marines, then they must go through our boot camp. I hope this helps to explain why we as Marines may be somewhat offended or offput when a civilian calls us soldiers or looks at the Marines and the army as the same, because or whole culture is completely different. It’s like calling Americans and Canadians the same because we are both in North America. I even have to tell my own close friends sometimes, when they say soldier or army. At this point I’ve got my family to understand and they know not to bunch us together.

Violations of the Constitution

Recently since the attacks on Spetember 11, 2001, the government has been passing legislation to help deter terrorism within the United States. I, being in the military, obviously want America to be a safe place. The problem is these pieces of legislation are taking away constitutional rights of the citizens given to all citizens under the bill of rights. It originated with the US Patriot Act put into effect during the Bush administration. It took away certain aspects of privacy given to citizens under the Bill of Rights, because now the federal government can listen in on private phone conversations because there is a possibility of terrorism. This has not even been effective in catching domestic terrorists and has just violated the rights of random citizens. What is even worse is the legislation that was just signed into law by President Obama a few days ago. Now the government can detain US citizens without trial for an indefinite period of time, based on the grounds that they are suspected of being terrorists. This takes away the rights of Habeas Corpus to these citizens because know actual evidence is needed to detain them. This also directly conflicts with the 6th Amendment which is the right to a lawer and a speedy trial because under this the government can hold these “suspected terrorists” without giving them a trial. The Constitution and Bill of Rights were written by our founding fathers because that is what they wanted our society to be like. I am in the military and what people do not realize is that we take an oath to uphold the Constituion asssuming that our government will do the same. Time after time though, there is legislation passed that directly conflicts with the Constitution and our individual freedoms, and for some reason our representatives and president keep writing and passing these.

How to do a Proper Pull-Up

Pull ups are a great way to test and build overall strength. There are many different ways that one can grip the pull up bar and the different grips will work on different muscle groups. Doing different variations of pull ups will be beneficial in buildint overall strengths. My favorite pull ups are with the palms of the hands facing away from the person. These pull ups are usually more diffictult to do and largely focus on the back muscles along with some muscles in the upper arm. The most important thing when doing any pull ups is to make sure that you come all the way down so that the arms are extended and then go up until the chin is over the bar. When someone is trying to do as many pull ups as possible it is recommended that once the chin gets over the bar that they just let their boday drop. This helps in a couple of ways. First, your body is using muscle strength when it is lowering the body down as well as on the way up. If the person just lets their body drop most of the strenght that would have been used to lower the body slowly is now conserved. The second reason it helps is that the person can use the natural elasticity of their muscles to give them a little advantage on the way up right after they come to a dead hang. The other most common variation  is with the palms facing towards the person doing the pull ups. This works mostly on the bicep muscles and is usually easier. The same fundamental concepts are used when doing these pull ups. There are also variations in which someone can have a grip with hands very close ore very far apart, utilizing different muscle.

The Arrival at Marine Corps Boot Camp

By far, the most challenging thing I have ever done in my life so far was Marine Corps Recruit Training down in Parris Island South, Carolina. I knew it was probably the worst time of the year to go down too, considering it was the length of the entire summer down in the heat and humidity of South Carolina. Not to mention the sand fleas that eat away at all the helpless recruits during this time of year. Right from the bus that took us from the air port crossed the bridge onto the island at about 2300 on June 6, it really hit me what I was getting myself into. The bus stopped at the main entrance of the islan and two Marines came onto the bus and yelled at us to put our heads down and hold up our forms of identifcation. From there the bus drove for at least another 15 minutes while we were stuck in that uncomfortable position. The next time the bus stopped I knew what was going to happen. It was our first encounter with a Parris Island Drill Instructor. He ran onto the bus and started yelling at all of us to get of his bus. Now that we were in Boot Camp nothing was ours and everything belonged to the drill instructors. So all of the new recruits get off the bus, scared out of our minds, and stand on the infamous yellow footprints of Parris Island. The first two or three days we did not sleep even for one minute. It consisted of getting all of our hair cut off, aqcuiring the gear we would need for the next three months, and most of all being yelled at constantly. I will never forget the night that I took my first steps to becoming a Marine.

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