Seven M's for Military Recruiting


John Kennedy, in 1962 said, “We choose to go to the moon … and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard…” He was exhorting the nation for a moon shot. But he could have been talking about military recruiting, as difficult as it has been.

Each of the service branches has recently met recruiting goals. Barely.

Why is this business so hard? Especially during a war? When normal red-blooded American men normally would queue up at recruiting stations. As they did for wars past. But not now.

What can be done?

Here are 7 points to make the military more attractive. Not by making it pretty. But by making it ugly.


The Hemispherical Engine1) Muscle. Men have ’em. Girls don’t. The basic training of female service members is not the same for men. Which creates a problem. Political Correctness demands that physical training be “gender normed” where women have lower standards than men. The military made easy. The males know this and know that the sisters are “differently abled” soldiers. Because there is no challenge, real men will not bother.


The HummerTestosterone engorged men are consumed with building bulging muscles, muscle shirts, muscle cars. The man has a Hemi. The boy has a Yugo. Arnold Swarchenegger drives a Hummer. Bill Maher has a hybrid sissy car.

The Band of Brothers has become the Band of Siblings.


The Army of One2) Marketing. The slogan is wrong. It is not an Army of One. We should not have an Army of individuals as the message attempts to convey. The military must not be made up of solitary independents. The culture and liberal politics has embraced this radical notion of the god of the individual. Here, the military cannot reflect the culture. The Army is a collection of teams, acting as one unit for one mission.

This Clinton-era sloganeering is little more than social engineering. To redefine unit cohesion.

3) Money. Cash has never been a motivator for patriots. It not about the (private) Benjamins. Income is not necessarily the motivator in any employment sector. Americans are not mercenaries.

The Army Times recently wrote about big bonus bucks for motivating soldiers. Where “warrior pay” rewards difficult and dangerous tours of duty. As it should. But this should not be a recruitment strategy. The number one reason people leave a job, is not the lack of money, but the lack of appreciation.

4) Mirror. When I was in the Army, back in the days of the horse cavalry, a full-length three-quarter profile photograph was a part of a soldier’s record. Image is everything. This emphasis changed during the Clinton era: now we work to avoid hurting the soldiers’ delicate self-esteem. “I oppose black hats –berets — for the entire Army. You cannot improve the morale of the force by just changing hats.”said Steve Buyer, (R) Ind., a former member of member of the House Armed Services Committee.

The Army has every soldier wearing the beret. What used to be coveted headgear of elite units. The beret has become as worthless as the trophies presented to every 6-year-old soccer player.

It’s too late to do anything about the head cover. But it’s not too late to stop cosmetic fixes to make the military mighty.


No time for war:

The Army goes bird watching;

celebrating Earth Day, 20065) Mother Earth. “Each year, the US Army celebrates Earth Day at approximately 200 major commands, installations and organizations in the continental United States and around the world.” Earth worshipping messages from Green Peace are chanted by war-time generals. General Schoomaker and Army Secretary Harvey have issued “An Earth Day Message” directing the military to devote scarce time, talent and treasure to politically correct nonsense “…to protect our environment.”

This is the ad campaign, “Sustaining the environment for a secure future,” where we leave a clean planet for the Islamofascists to rule.


The Army can’t recruit. But it can recycle.

Terrorists are sawing off the heads of US soldiers. While the Army separates glass, paper and plastic.

6) Mensch. The military is composed of stand-up guys. Disciplined warriors. War fighting is a violent activity requiring violence from men. Men killing men. Bayonet drills. Rifle butt to the chin. Boot to the groin. Making men makes for unit cohesion.


Bayonet DrillNot in today’s Army. No time. Soldiers now have to sit through gender sensitivity training.

A man wants a Mensch as a mentor. To learn to win. Drill Sergeants that, heaven forbid, cuss.

The military is an exclusive club. It’s not for everyone. There should be high barriers to entry. Only a few good men make it in.

And the also-ran, ne’er-do-wells should be sent home. If you want winners, there must be losers. Every American male should watch the beginning of the 1976 movie, Baby Blue Marine.

It’s about a Marine washout who failed basic training during WWII. The failures were issued light blue fatigues and a train ticket home. The world knew they didn’t make it in the Marines. The light blue fatigues were designed to humiliate. No one wanted to fail. The military personnel selection process was nearly as brutal as the fighting.

The world was at war. We won.

7) Momma. The military is not your mother. There should be no soft, feminine side to life in the barracks, life in the trenches. Military men leave their women behind for the brotherhood of arms. A new recruit expects his Drill Sergeant to treat him differently than his mother. A kinder, gentler DI is not what challenges a young man. It’s too easy.

And if your mother, sister, or girlfriend is fighting alongside you, then maybe the military isn’t that tough.

The American male senses this. And really doesn’t want to join the soldier sorority sisters. Hangin’ with the girlfriends and homosexuals.

Maybe combat today is too easy. If girls can do it. Let them. The men will stay at home.

Kennedy’s speech also reminded us that “we intend to win.” Let us pray our armed forces give us more than good intentions.


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Thank you (foot)notes:

More on Baby Blue Marine at the jump.

Mudville has Open Post.

Tapscotts Behind the Wheel hosts the Car Car.nival. Best reading for real men: Car Guys.

Blue Star Chronicles has the Carnival.

Plot Summary for

Baby Blue Marine (1976)

A would-be Marine fails basic training, and is sent home wearing the “baby blue” fatigues of a washout. En route, he is mugged by a battle-fatigued Marine Raider, who leaves him to hitch-hike home in an undeserved hero’s uniform. A small Colorado town takes him in, treating him like the hero he appears to be.

Full Cast and Crew for

Baby Blue Marine (1976)

Directed by

John D. Hancock

Writing credits (in alphabetical order)

Stanford Whitmore

Cast (in credits order)complete, awaiting verification

Jan-Michael Vincent …. Marion

Glynnis O’Connor …. Rose

Katherine Helmond …. Mrs. Hudkins

Dana Elcar …. Sheriff Wenzel

Bert Remsen …. Mr. Hudkins

Bruno Kirby …. Pop Mosley (as B. Kirby Jr.)

Richard Gere …. Raider

Art Lund …. Mr. Elmore

Michael Conrad …. Drill Instructor

Allan Miller …. Capt. Bittman

Michael LeClair …. Barney Hudkins

Will Seltzer …. Pvt. Phelps

Kenneth Tobey …. Buick Driver

Lelia Goldoni …. Mrs. Townsley

Marshall Efron …. Cook

Barton Heyman …. Barber

Adam Arkin …. Rupe

Damon Douglas …. Dobbs

Barry Greenberg …. Idiot #1

John Blyth Barrymore …. Idiot #2

John Calvin …. Paratrooper

Richard Narita …. Masamura

Evan C. Kim …. Harakawa

Keone Young …. Katsu

Phyllis Glick …. Girl Behind Bus Counter

William Martel …. Bartender

Warren Burton …. Second Serviceman

Abraham Alvarez …. First Serviceman

Bill Sorrells …. Coach

Carole Ita White …. Girl on Bus

Duncan Gamble …. Sailor

Tita Bell …. Girl #1

Lani O’Grady …. Girl #2

Barbara Dodd …. Mother

Tom Lee McFadden …. First S.P

James Lough …. Second S.P

rest of cast listed alphabetically:

John Drew Barrymore …. (uncredited)

Produced by

Leonard Goldberg …. producer

Robert LaVigne …. associate producer

Aaron Spelling …. producer

Original Music by

Fred Karlin

Cinematography by

László Kovács

Film Editing by

Marion Rothman

Casting by

Linda Otto

Production Design by

Walter Scott Herndon

Set Decoration by

Marvin March

Costume Design by

Madeline Sylos (as Madelyn Sylos)

Makeup Department

Dorothy Byrne …. hair stylist

Gary Morris …. makeup artist (as Garrett Morris)

Production Management

Norman Henry …. executive production manager

Ric Rondell …. unit manager

Russel Wiles …. post-production supervisor

Second Unit Director or Assistant Director

Michael Daves …. first assistant director

Jerry Grandey …. second assistant director

Art Department

Bill Bates …. property master

Richard Reseigne …. construction coordinator

Sound Department

Glenn E. Anderson …. sound mixer

George Brand …. music editor

Raul A. Bruce …. boom operator

Tex Rudloff …. dubbing mixer

Keith Stafford …. sound editor


David R. Ellis …. stunts (uncredited)

R.A. Rondell …. stunts (uncredited)

Other crew

Richmond L. Aguilar …. gaffer

Bobby Byrne …. camera operator (as Robert Byrne)

William C. Carruth …. associate film editor

Wayne Fitzgerald …. title designer

Richard La Motte …. wardrobe supervisor

Leonard Lookabaugh …. key grip

Nolan Miller …. wardrober

Rocky Moriana …. music supervisor

Karen Rasch …. script supervisor

Marcia Warwick …. production coordinator


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5 Responses

  1. Jack Yoest says:

    Dear Jack,

    With over 2,500 dead and 20,000 wounded in Iraq…most from America’s Army…do you think the U.S. Army Soldier is “worthy” of the black beret or do you still buy into the BS zero sum thinking that someone has to lose (look like feces wearing the class “a” uniform c*nt cap) so a few can feel like “winners” and wear a beret?

    If you still prescribe to BS us/them snobbery, what kind of so-called “officer” were you who has no clue about teamwork and is such a narrow-minded snob?

    Furthermore, did you ever study military topics when you were in? Are you so d*mn clueless to not know we’ve had amphibious swimming tanks for decades?



  2. Mike says:

    Mike, re: beret, it is the less looking down, as looking up. Like looking up to the Airborne Badge.

    re: snob, yes, my people would do all the work, and I would get all the credit. It was more than this sinner deserved.

    re: clueless, yes. I couldn’t get any of my three Sheridans to float. See:

    There’s a question in that post for you…



  3. Michael Church says:

    Some of these points are well taken, but I think you miss the big picture. Give Americans a war worth fighting — one with clear, achievable goals that self-evidently defend American democracy — and they’ll come out of the woodwork to fight it. Including the best of them.

    But give Americans another Viet Nam — a war fought on false premises, whose terms of victory seem to be in constant flux and whose role in homeland security is at best debatable — and the best will hang back.

    The war against Islamofascism is the most serious thing in the world; the war in Iraq is at best a distraction from it, and at worst a training ground for our enemy. Of course its hard to get people to fight a war like that!

  4. beth says:

    I included this post in the Carnival of Blue Stars #15. I can’t get the trackback to work so I wanted to let you know it’s in the Carnival. I’d appreciate a link back to the Carnival to help give exposure to all the post highlighted.


  5. SOG knives says:

    Interesting ideas… I wonder how the Hollywood media would portray this?