Full Speed, New Direction

The New York Times has an article about the Marines’ efforts to recruit gays:

The Marines were the service most opposed to ending the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, but they were the only one of five invited branches of the military to turn up with their recruiting table and chin-up bar at the center Tuesday morning. Although Marines pride themselves on being the most testosterone-fueled of the services, they also ferociously promote their view of themselves as the best. With the law now changed, the Marines appear determined to prove that they will be better than the Army, Navy, Air Force and Coast Guard in recruiting gay, lesbian and bisexual service members.

I know some people like that. As soon as they stop fighting against something, they start measuring everybody by their support for it. Arguably, it’s this mentality that provides a backbone for a cohesive society in times of change. God bless them, however irritating they can be…

Will Truman

Will Truman is the Editor-in-Chief of Ordinary Times. He is also on Twitter.


  1. I dunno. I read this with a great deal of respect for the Marines. It can’t be a change will come easily for some (many?) at first, and it looks like they decided to accept it with as much gusto as possible. I can’t help but admire them for this attitude on display in this article.

  2. I agree that this seems like a positive development.

    But there’s a little bit of “yay…now we’re at war with Oceania!” mentality that I find disturbing.

    I suppose I can always be a critic. If the alternative is just to reluctantly implement don’t ask don’t tell or, worse, implement it but encourage an intolerant or even violent culture, then I’ll take the marines’ approach.

    (Disclosure: I have never served in the armed forces.)

    • Agreed. It’s better than any alternative I can think of. It just reminds me of a lot of people in real life that make the hair on the back of my neck stand up.

      • Actually, the person who comes to mind most with this description is a certain very famous political blogger. (And yes, it would be hypocritical to deny that when he’s linked to my stuff, it’s filled me with childlike glee.) Full steam ahead! Then a rapid shift, and full steam in the other direction! And all the people that were formerly right are now wrong, wrong, wrong!!

        I’m assuming we all know who I’m talking about?

        • That reminds me! You’re a doctor! You need to analyze these pictures and tell me if this woman really looks pregnant!

          This is important!

          • I am unable to read said blogger’s posts about a certain woman. Said blogger’s obsession has gone well beyond the unseemly and into the realm of the unhinged.

        • He Whom We Are Afraid to Name Lest He Not Link Us?

          Yeah, Russell, I get it. Excitable Andy’s Trig Palin obsession would have ruined anyone else. On the other hand, I think how seriously certain people take him is an indication of how serious they should be taken themselves. I mean, for me Glenn Beck is a guilty pleasure, but I wouldn’t think of citing or quoting him in the real world.

          • There are those of us who blog because we are compelled.

            There are those of us who blog as part of trying to make a living.

            Those of us who blog because we are compelled see comments as the currency with which we are paid. Perhaps the reward is the larger audience who can read our idle musings.

            Those of us who blog as part of trying to make a living see a link from someone like HWWAATNLHNLU as, like, for real currency.

            It’s one thing to mock folks who see the link as something that will definitely improve their Esteem (or, God help them, their Self-Actualization) tier of Maslow’s hierarchy.

            It’s quite another for those who see the link as tied to their Physiological or Safety tiers.

          • Nah. I was doing the oblique reference thing because I thought it would be more rhetorically amusing to do so. I don’t have any compunction about saying critical things about ol’ Sully.

          • JB, the blogger in question seems like something from Lovecraft and so perhaps is aptly renamed/acronymed.

            Perhaps I am too hard, although there may be a substantive difference between currying favor with those who can advance our careers and remaining silent before those who could and would destroy them.

            Come to think of it, this touches on my jihad against the academy. But for now I’ll leave it with Richard Rorty’s consideration of the “professional philosopher”:


          • What’s all the banging on Sullivan? I love the guy. He’s one of the few big name bloggers out there that will link to both sides’ arguments, and admit when he was in error. (Provided, of course, those errors don’t involve obsessions about things named Trig.) Added Bonus: He posts South Park clips and Dr Who mashups.

          • He looks at both sides of the same side, Tod, that much is true. Liking him is fine, it’s the taking him seriously that is questionable. No doubt there are diamonds in the dunghill, although I doubt he’d admit the same about the people he goes after.

            “Wow, you know, Ann Coulter has a real good point here about…”

            Heh heh.

          • Tom, wasn’t trying to steal your thunder–hadn’t read your post above, but knew it had to be Handy Andy. Ask Tammy Bruce sometime about Handy Andy’s repulsive ADs seeking fisting and Golden Showers. Sullivan’s just a very, very sick, man. Once, while being a guest on Maher’s show, he got up and pretty much flipped the bird and started picking his ass–it was as nauseating as anything I had ever seen. Is there anyone in this world who wants to see Sully pick that bubble butt ass of his?

          • Yes, Tod, that’s the other side of the same side. In fact, it’s the same side of the same side. And of course, nice technique, using Coulter to slam the GOP, although birtherism was never mainstream GOP. Cheap.

            Mr. Heidegger’s charges above about the personal Mr. Sullivan are ugly, but not disputed, I think. They would have ruined any other man without Andy’s demographics: gay, HIV, protesting Catholic, conservative apostate. On the right side of every issue until the wind blows, and then poof! he is praised for his open-mindedness in changing to the winning side.

            There are those [some at this blog] who seem to want to emulate The Excitable One’s semi-successful career path; I suggest he’s one of a kind. They would be better served sharpening their analysis, even-handedness and writing skills than believing that they could possibly get away with the product and conduct that he has.

            There’s only one Andy, God love him. As for the rest of us, we have to play it—forgive the expression—straight.

          • As to Sullivan’s personal stuff, I can’t say as I know or care. As to his semi-successful career path, I’m unsure which I am more surprised by – that you find his blog “semi” successful, or that you think I wish to emulate him. Aside from the fact that I don’t get into one line posts, this isn’t actually my career – not would I want it to be.

            But birthirism was never mainstream? Seriously?

          • We’re supposed to forget that whole month time period where Donald Trump was a serious contender for the Republican nomination, Tod.

            As for Sully, I don’t have a problem with him. As long as you remember he’s a Tory. Which means when compared to your average Republican, he sounds sane, but I remember the loving paeans to Paul Ryan’s plan because hey, it was SERIOUS~ and Obama didn’t have a REAL PLAN~ as everyone else with a calculator was looking at Ryan’s plan and saying, “um.”

          • Oh, and as for Trig. Palin’s proven herself to be such a carny grifter that I wouldn’t completely throw the idea that Bristol got knocked the first time and Sarah took the kid completely out of the picture. Especially when you look at how Palin acted when she was supposedly pregnant.

          • How come we’ve never seen Trig’s long form birth certificate?

          • dailykos can produce some startlingly accurate, and often uncovered news. (fishgrease among others produces damn fine work)
            Occasionally they produce things like this Palin thingy — which was mostly just gossipy rumors that made lefty bloggers happy.

          • From what I’ve read, and I admit I’ve paid little to no attention to this, Bristol was taken out of school for the time period that lines up with when Palin was supposedly ‘pregnant.’ So, Bristol finds out she’s pregnant, Sarah pulls the kid out of school, all of the sudden Sarah is ‘pregnant’, the kid has the baby, and then boom – there’s Trig.

            Now, I put the odds at this at around 5-10%, but the fact it’s a thought at all shows how much of a con artist Palin has turned out to be.

          • Jesse,

            For that to work, Palin would have had to successfully keep an infant sequestered for two months. And she would have had to keep Levi Johnson from squealing (he doesn’t seem to be biting his tongue with regard to the Palins). It also relies on the foreknowledge that Bristol would turn around and get pregnant again and that the two-month delay in Trig’s birth would turn out to be exculpatory. Or, alternately, taking a really big chance on trying to pass a two month old baby as a newborn. There are a lot of loose ends to tie up.

            Regardless of what we might think of Palin’s moral character, I just don’t think she’s that competent.

            I would actually find this conspiracy theory oddly comforting, if it were true. It would mean that she is a more capable person than I believe her to be. Even the morality of it doesn’t bother me all that much. Snapping up a grandchild and pretending its yours used to be quite common. I actually thought it might be true before the second pregnancy was announced too soon for it to come from the same woman (hence the new fold to the conspiracy theory, that Trig was born two months before the announcement) and it really didn’t bother me on any moral level. I can find as many ways for it to be endearing as I can outrageous.

            In any event, either she is as dumb and incompetent as her critics say she is, or she is as disciplined and clever as the conspiracy theory suggests. She’s not both.

          • I know I will be the only person on the planet to say or think this but…

            If it’s true that Palin lied about Trig’s birth; that she risked her professional trajectory at that moment to take the heat and some of the consequences off of her daughter – well, it’s still none of our business, but…

            It may be the first thing about her that makes me like her.

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