Benjamin Franklin nailed it when he said, "Fatigue is the best pillow." True story, Benny. There's nothing like pushing your body so far past exhaustion that you'd willingly, even longingly, take a nap on a concrete slab.
As the government shutdown drags on into its third week, the Coast Guard is the only branch of the military whose members will continue to serve without pay. And not everyone thinks that arrangement is acceptable.
In a recent essay for Proceedings Magazine, the 23rd Commandant of the Coast Guard, Adm. Thad W. Allen (Ret.), criticized the shutdown, calling it "political theater" before slamming elected officials for losing sight of their "constitutional responsibilities," even as coast guardsmen across the country continue to serve in austere and dangerous situations.
I am not a film critic. I’m just a guy with a Netflix account and a lot of opinions. I also haven’t seen every film and television show about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan from start to finish. For example, I only made it about a quarter of the way into Robert Redford’s tedious 2007 Iraq War drama Lions for Lambs before I decided to count my own farts instead. And while I did somehow manage to make it all the way through the first episode of Fox’s short-lived Enlisted, I had already erased every second of it from my memory by the time the credits started rolling.
The explosion of mobile technology, social media, and video has been baffling to me, a simple soldier. I was cool when it was just a bunch of kids Harlem-shaking and cinnamon-huffing their way into our hearts. But millennials aren’t the only ones creating weirdly specific viral content. There has been a new hot genre in the recent years spreading across YouTube, Facebook Live and Periscope — hot enough that I needed to investigate it further.
The late French filmmaker Francois Truffaut once said, or at least he’s credited with saying, that “there’s no such thing as an anti-war film.” Interpretations vary, but most take the quote to mean that movie depictions of battle, no matter how gruesome or conscientious, will inevitably glorify combat and the camaraderie forged in the trenches. I disagree. Anti-war films can and do exist, it’s just that they very rarely get made, and when they do nobody sees them. Truffaut wasn’t making a grand statement about the limitations of film as an artistic medium. It was simply a casual observation.