I see that Michael Kelly has decided (pehaps unwisely) to revisit the “chickenhawk” issue, and that Glenn Reynolds has provided an approving link. Kieran Healy dissents, with a link to Matthew Yglesias. Kelly’s attempt to make the question one of civilian control of the military is utterly unconvincing.

Having added my two cents’ worth to this debate some time ago, allow me to bring it to your attention once again. To summarize: not having military experience is no disqualification for leadership in wartime. Having chosen to avoid service in a war that you supported while other people your age were fighting it also isn’t a disqualification, but it’s nothing to be proud of either. There’s a name for the willingness to shed other people’s blood unaccompanied by a willingness to risk one’s own skin, and that name isn’t “courage.”

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact:

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