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1
Might not have been a great idea for Vietnam vets but this seems pretty cool.
Posted by cliche on September 1, 2011 at 6:32 AM · Report this
2
And I can sure think of some spots on the Pacific Crest Trail that need some help....
Posted by StuckInUtah on September 1, 2011 at 6:55 AM · Report this
3
Smart, thoughtful, economical and compassionate.

Good job, Patty.
Posted by Smartypants on September 1, 2011 at 7:05 AM · Report this
TVDinner 4
Yes, MOAR!
Posted by TVDinner http:// on September 1, 2011 at 7:17 AM · Report this
California Kid 5
@3 which means the GOP will fight this tooth and nail
Posted by California Kid on September 1, 2011 at 7:31 AM · Report this
6
@ 5 -- thanks for bursting the bubble, but you're probably right. On the other hand Patty, since she's co-chair of the Super-Congress Budget Committee, she may be able to push it through as long as she's willing to be a dick right back and cut Republican pet projects if they don't go along.
Posted by Smartypants on September 1, 2011 at 7:46 AM · Report this
7
B.S. Out of everyone's sight and everyone's mind. Just like what happened to them when they were in Iraq, Afghanistan, Vietnam. You might as well put them in prison.

Posted by Fairhaven on September 1, 2011 at 7:50 AM · Report this
8
@7: Yes. The woods are just like prison.
Posted by Ben on September 1, 2011 at 8:02 AM · Report this
9
Almost nobody in this country gave a damn or sacrificed when these men and women were sent to Iraq, Afghanistan, Vietnam, you name the place. Now you want to further isolate them? Why don't you feel the need to welcome and support them at a level that recognizes that their sacrifices and efforts were suppose to benefit your general welfare?

Send them to some wilderness area? Keep the separated from society? What an incredibly ignorant and callous idea.
Posted by Fairhaven on September 1, 2011 at 8:12 AM · Report this
Reverse Polarity 10
@7 & 9,

Combat veterans sometimes have a hard time reintegrating back into a non-violent civilian role in a crowded society. For some people, spending time in an uncrowded natural environment is extremely soothing and mentally healthy. In the article, veterans themselves are praising the program.

Nobody is forcing veterans into this; it is entirely voluntary. It is helping some veterans. I can't see how anyone could possibly complain about this.
Posted by Reverse Polarity on September 1, 2011 at 8:42 AM · Report this
TacomaRoma 11
I think this is a great idea. Get the VA endorsement and go after more funding. Also, how about say, $15/hour for the vets?
Posted by TacomaRoma on September 1, 2011 at 9:07 AM · Report this
12
@10

It is an example of how little is given to those who have sacrificed so much by the overwhelming majority who sacrificed virtually nothing.

Sorry, but we owe these people a heck of a lot more than $8.00/hr and a tent in a wilderness area.
Posted by Fairhaven on September 1, 2011 at 9:22 AM · Report this
MacCrocodile 13
@12 - How about forty acres and a mule that shits gold?
Posted by MacCrocodile http://maccrocodile.com/ on September 1, 2011 at 9:51 AM · Report this
Westlake, son! 14
This is an awesome idea.

@7 I'm looking forward to camping 12mi from the nearest road this Labor Day weekend. Can't say I'd be equally excited about prison.
Posted by Westlake, son! on September 1, 2011 at 10:17 AM · Report this
15
Uhhhhh, looks like a plan to put active duty troops into areas known to be favored by CANNABIS CULTIVATORS to me. Color me weird, but I am not in favor of active duty military in my forests...seems to violate several rules of law and order. Oh yes, BTW, I am a cannabis cultivator, but legally, thank you.
Posted by pupuguru http://www.godsweed.org on September 1, 2011 at 11:20 AM · Report this
Soupytwist 16
This is brilliant... finding some purpose after being institutionalized is incredibly hard, and this is a great way to help bridge that transition. Makes me sad that we don't do more.
Posted by Soupytwist http://twitter.com/katherinesmith on September 1, 2011 at 11:49 AM · Report this
internet_jen 17
I read a news article about how the Japanese have a term that translates into 'forest bathing'. It's when they take trips to wilderness areas to relax and reduce stress. It's shown tangible benefits in terms of blood pressure, heart rate, ...other stress signals. It's been a cultural practice to go enjoy the beauty of nature, but only recently has any tried to quantify it's benefits.
Posted by internet_jen on September 1, 2011 at 11:54 AM · Report this
keshmeshi 18
@12,

Veterans get many benefits from the government at the state and federal level: preferential hiring, low interest mortgages, low interest loans for down-payments on their homes, and that's not even including what the feds are contractually obligated to provide.

I'm sorry you're so ignorant of what this society provides to its veterans. If you are a veteran, I suggest doing some homework to find out about all the benefits you're entitled to.
Posted by keshmeshi on September 1, 2011 at 12:25 PM · Report this
19
@18
I am a vet, keshmeshi, and only a vet would understand what I am talking about. Integration into society would be a lot easier for returning military personal if there was a common understanding of shared sacrifice by everyone in society. There isn't.

I don't need to read your lecture about vet "benefits". They are nothing more than payoffs to satisfy the ego and guilt of those who didn't and wouldn't make those sacrifices.
Posted by Fairhaven on September 1, 2011 at 1:27 PM · Report this
Soupytwist 20
@19 - Your view on the benefits provided to veterans is interesting, as is the assumption that "common" people don't empathize with our veterans. It suggests that you wouldn't be satisfied with any measures that "common" society takes to assist veterans. Am I mistaken?
Posted by Soupytwist http://twitter.com/katherinesmith on September 1, 2011 at 3:13 PM · Report this
21
Yes, you are quite wrong. Having empathy for military folks and their needs doesn’t necessarily correlate to a VA loan on a house...and only if they financially qualify for it.

What you and other posters fail to understand, it that when someone joins the military, they are writing a blank check to you and me with their life. That sacrifice isn’t and hasn’t been shared in recent history by those who you refer to as “common” people. Common society gives little more than lip service of “supporting the troops“ when the military is sent overseas. It is nothing more that an overused, empty slogan.

We send these people off to a series of never-ending conflicts and absolutely do nothing to support them while their lives oscillate from incredible boredom to extreme fear and terror. They wonder why nobody back home is attempting or trying to sacrifice like themselves. Instead our world goes on like they are of no consequence while they are living day to day hoping not to be maimed or killed.

We completely ignore them when they really need us, and it is shameful. My
disagreement is that common people haven't and don't put any skin into the game, and I believe that is morally corrupt.

Like I said before, the "benefits" are just payoffs to make us all feel good about ourselves.
Posted by Fairhaven on September 1, 2011 at 5:03 PM · Report this
22
This is how the Great Ocean Road along the southern coast of Australia was built. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Ocean…
Posted by epunch on September 1, 2011 at 11:18 PM · Report this
Soupytwist 23
@21 - Sorry, but everything you wrote supports my impression of your feelings about "common" people. You're argument that unless everyone makes the exact same sacrifice as everyone else, we're incapable of empathizing and helping each other -and your assertion that the average person has "no skin in the game" rings false in a society with a volunteer service made up of "common" people.

You can't possibly know where the average person's sympathies lie. Do we do enough for our veterans? What's enough?
Posted by Soupytwist http://twitter.com/katherinesmith on September 2, 2011 at 6:07 PM · Report this

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