Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

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Military deaths

Red State points you to this chart on deaths in the military since 1980:

Ronald Reagan . . . . . . 9163 (1981-1984); George W. Bush . . . . . 5187 (2001-2004). (via Instapundit)

Discussions - 19 Comments

Really reflects VD Hanson’s thoughts that the current war is but a blip on the richter scale of U.S. wars.
Another interesting comparison might be to compare war deaths in Iraq to civilian work related deaths over the past three years. Might be willing to bet that the work related death toll is higher.

Lots of "accidents" during those 4 Reagan years, but not many deaths (19) due to hostile action. Interestingly, relatively fewer accidents during the Bush years reflected here, but many deaths due to Hostile Action, and NO deaths due to terrorist attack.

Of course, the Bush years 2005 and 2006 would add significantly to both columns.

We should also look at the active duty columns for the two presidents, as well.

In 1983, for instance, Reagan saw 1413 accidents for 2123909 on active duty, or 7%. In 2003, Bush saw 560 accidents for 142348 on active duty, or 4%. Bush also saw 5% of active duty personnel killed due to hostile action in 2004 (737/1411287). That %age will also have increased a great deal from 2004 through 2006.

Also, what are the per capita deaths of young men of military age in the US from cause from homicide to car accidents? I posit that our sons in Iraq and Afghanistan are safer than those in the US on our streets.

I’ve seen some numbers on this. It is more dangerous for you to be a kid growing up in L.A. than it is to be a soldier on active duty in Iraq. Maybe Cindy Sheehan should be leading some protests against gang violence.

K and Dan,

Nice reasoning. So, if more people in a population die of AIDS than from Cancer, then we should pursue carcinogens, because they are safer! Or, if more kids are killed jumping on trampolines than from riding bicycles without helmets, then we should ban helmets.

As long as it is inner city Black kids getting killed in LA, I am sure you will continue to view those numbers as trivial.

Now, who is being a simpleton, Fung?

Well, I surely will not admit to it. That leaves Dan and K, I think. Can you think of a more accurate way to describe their reasoning?

Would make a difference to hear the media report a daily count of the number of people in America who die from anything other than disease?

I would disagree. There is no reason in the world to compare hostile action deaths to deaths of any other kind. Similarly, there is no reason to compare crib death prevalence to AIDS prevalence, or to shaken baby syndrome deaths.

In the case of the latter, the only acceptable number for shaken baby deaths is zero. No reasonable person would suggest that we should stop trying to reduce such deaths when they approach the level of crib deaths, or vice versa.

So it is with deaths due to hostile action. The only reasonable reference for such a statistic is the SAME statistic under different conditions, including different leaders.

It will be small comfort to the families of fallen soldiers to know that their daughter or son was statistically safer than a teenager in East LA.

I was not actually thinking of black kids in LA, but of kids I know who have died in car accidents in Geauga County. We have had a rash of those lately and a couple of suicides from romantic disappointments, too. My grown sons have survived those domestic perils as well as those in military service, so I have escaped both kinds of parental agony. Violent deaths in cities are not the only way young men die in the US, nor, possibly, are they the most common. I am only guessing, though, I have no statistics at hand.

K., I was reacting, perhaps, more specifically to Dan’s suggestion, which followed yours, or perhaps to your use of the term "streets." No matter. My sons are just now approaching the age of legal driving, and I already hate graduation time, for the awful news that it often brings of kids and cars and alcohol.

But, whatever the numbers are, I will not send my sons, nor allow them to be drafted into the invasion of Iraq. if they choose it, then so be it, but otherwise, they will not go. I would have said the same of Vietnam, but probably for no other conflict in U.S. history.

No draft to worry about. Hasn’t been around for a long, long time.

And if it hasn’t been around, that means it can never come back, right?

Worry if you want, but no one, other than Charles Rangel and other Democrats, wanted to re-institute the draft.

Talk to him about it if concerns you that much.

This from The Belmont Club Blog:

Robin Goodfellow said...

These statistics can’t be right, can they? According to multiple sources, the death rate in the US for the age group 15-34 is well over 100 per 100,000 population per year. This would indicate that, from a fatality perspective, even serving in the US armed forces during war time is comparatively safe with, and maybe even slightly safer than, just living a normal life in the US.

I’ve never tried to link like this before and just hope this works, but his sources are on the site.
">death statistics

So, if we use these stats, then the draft looks like a safety device for young men.

I’m wondering if Mr. "Bush Lied, People Died" Fung has seen the documents being released from secret Iraqi archives. Turns out, Saddam did have a relationship with Al Qaeda...we don’t yet know how deep. He was even scoping out how to contribute to French elections (i.e., ’buy’ French politicians).

I suspect that Fung and his crazed companions will owe Bush a series of apologies before too long...not that Bush should actually wait for them. They won’t be forthcoming, regardless of the level of proof.

ABC News on Iraqi Documents

Don’t forget that Bush even admitted that the information was false. He didn’t admit to lying, but he did admit that it was false. So, now, what are we to make of this?

(1) It is real, and valid, in which case Bush should apologize for telling us that his intelligence was misleading. (2) It is a plant, in which case Bush should be removed from office. I wonder why this hasen’t been picked up by more news agencies in the MSM than ABC. (3) I’ll wait and see. If Saddam was, in fact, in collusion with Bin Laden, then Bush will deserve an apology. I remember, however, that Ho Chih Minh approached the USA for support, and was turned down, before he went to the Communists. It is entirely possible that the meeting with Bin Laden and the Iraqis is simlarly insubstantial. Didn’t Rumsfeld meet with Saddam, for instance? Documentation of that meeting could be made to look very incriminating....

So, you will actually apologize if it turns out that Saddam was in league with Osama? I’ll be proud of you if that happens, and I might even forgive orientation toward political questions.

I’m pretty sure these documents are legit. Why wait so long to release them...they would have been much more useful during the election? I think the explanation is true...the State Department and CIA have been dragging their heels...they hate Bush, and the pace of translation has been glacial. Why Bush tolerated this is a question I can’t answer (yet).

Yes, I would apologize if I could be reasonably assured that the documents and the initial interpretations are legitimate.

My primary aversion to this war is because I have felt that it is both unnecessary and misguided. If it can be demonsstrated that Saddam and his supporters truly collaborated on 9/11, then I would actively support this war, and I would apologize for opposing it.

I never opposed the war in Afghanistan, for similar reasons.

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