As Kevin pointed out, Jack Murtha is calling for a new draft. Of course, the military brass don’t want a draft, and every military member I’ve spoken to who has served in the conscript and the volunteer army doesn’t want conscription.
But if Murtha is so enamored of citizen service, why don’t we replace our legislature with a drafted body? At the age of 18, rather than registering for selective service, our young people will register for
KP duty congressional service. Those who can pass a basic American history and civics test get put into the system.
The first thing we need is term limits. One term sounds like enough to me. The next thing we do is get rid of the elective process, and choose people from the “Congressional Service” pool by random. So we’ll be replacing our entire House contingent every two years, and 1/3 of our Senate contingent in the same period.
Sure, Murtha will be out of a job… But can we really say that our “volunteer” legislature has been a success? How can we expect our legislators to enact good policies when they’ve been outside the real world for most of their lives, and are trying desperately to ensure they never go back to it? At least if we’re turning over our Congress, the people who make policy know they have to go actually live under that policy. Some would say that with such high turnover, Congress wouldn’t get very much done. Considering what they’re usually doing, I’d call that a Good Thing™.
Think about it: a Congress full of plumbers, secretaries, engineers, nurses, cooks, bank tellers, etc. We’re talking about people who actually know how to put things together and make things happen. I think it’s be a damn sight better than a Congress that’s about 40% full of lawyers, a class of people trained to field a debate team, don’t you?
So, Mr. Murtha, I presume we can count on your support?