February 11, 2002 - Harrisburg Patriot: Reply tepid to national service call

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By Admin1 (admin) on Tuesday, February 12, 2002 - 9:20 am: Edit Post

Reply tepid to national service call

Read and comment on this op ed piece from the Harrisburg Patriot that says that the glow of self-sacrifice that flowed from Sept. 11 is already fading and that if the president is serious about instilling the idea of public service in a self-obsessed culture, he will have to do more than give a few speeches at:

Reply tepid to national service call *

* This link was active on the date it was posted. PCOL is not responsible for broken links which may have changed.

Reply tepid to national service call

Feb 11, 2002 - The Harrisburg Patriot Author(s): Cynthia Tucker

What a relief.

Somewhere between the news headlines dedicated to basketball megastar Michael Jordan's marital woes and the racial fracas in New York City over a memorial to firefighters, it became clear that the nation was back to normal.

Sept. 11 didn't really change us much after all. As a culture, we are as superficial, petty and self-absorbed as ever.

That does not portend well for President Bush's call to national service, issued in his State of the Union speech. Speaking eloquently of "a nation that serves goals larger than self," the president asked for volunteers to fill the ranks of his new USA Freedom Corps -- an umbrella organization that would combine and augment the Peace Corps, AmeriCorps and Senior Corps, all existing volunteer programs.

Bush's aides claim the president is dedicated to the idea of building on the spurt of patriotism and volunteerism that followed the Sept. 11 terrorist atrocities. Indeed, he launched a two-day trip to several Southern cities, including Atlanta, to reinforce his proposal, and he has created an eight-person White House office to oversee the volunteer initiative.

But if the president is serious about instilling the idea of public service in a self-obsessed culture, he will have to do more than give a few speeches. The glow of self-sacrifice and generosity that flowed from Sept. 11 is already fading. Church attendance has dropped back to usual levels, according to surveys. Neither police forces nor the armed services have registered significant increases in recruits. Patriotism has become, once again, a spectator sport.

Indeed, the nation's reluctance to invest heavily in the ideal of public service can be measured by the resounding silence around the subject of reinstating the draft. Though a few politicians, including Sen. Zell Miller, D-Ga., have gently suggested it, none has seriously proposed it. While politicians across the political spectrum hawkishly insist on taking the war on terror around the world, very few of them plan to send their sons and daughters. The nation's volunteer armed forces depend heavily on the working classes; the sons and daughters of the powerful and affluent rarely sign up.

Even Sen. John McCain, D-Ariz., who made a call to "serve a cause greater than oneself" a part of his presidential campaign, has not been willing to call for a draft, either for military service or other forms of public service. Instead, McCain and Sen. Evan Bayh, D- Ind., introduced a bill to expand the volunteer AmeriCorps, often referred to as a "domestic Peace Corps." That proposal, though modest, has not gained widespread support.

Indeed, until quite recently Bush was no big fan of AmeriCorps. A pet project of President Bill Clinton, AmeriCorps was criticized harshly by Republican members of Congress, including McCain, who tried to kill it. Sen. Rick Santorum, R-Pa., dismissed AmeriCorps as a program for "kids to stand around a campfire to hold hands and sing Kumbaya at taxpayers' expense." Asked about the program during the presidential campaign, Bush said he would want to "evaluate its effectiveness" before deciding whether to continue its funding.

But the events of Sept. 11 and the uplifting, if brief, outpouring of public spiritedness that followed convinced many American leaders that citizens were looking for a way to serve. Perhaps that's true; perhaps we're just seeking leadership.

Perhaps the ideal that President Bush proposed -- two years of service to "your neighbors and your nation" -- can thrive, but that will happen only if the president uses his widespread popularity to make it a part of the civic culture. Cynthia Tucker is editorial page editor for the Atlanta Constitution.

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By Kevin Gaudette (thinksystems) on Friday, February 22, 2002 - 5:57 am: Edit Post

CIA Futurist Report--most optimistic scenarios assumes the FAILURE of the Peace Corps 3 Principles--in 3rd World and in USA!!!
Self-fulfilling Prophecy!!!


In an unclassified National Intelligence Council study, Alternative Global Futures:2000-2015,
cosponsored by the US Department of
State and the CIA, several dozen government and nongovernment specialists in a wide range of fields developed the following scenarios for the future:

Scenario One: Inclusive Globalization:
A virtuous circle develops among technology, economic
growth, demographic factors, and effective governance,
which enables a majority of the world's people to
benefit from globalization...A minority of the world's people¡ªin Sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle East, Central and South Asia, and the Andean region¡ªdo not benefit from these positive changes, and internal conflicts persist in and around those countries left behind.

Scenario Two: Pernicious Globalization
Global elites thrive, but the majority of the world's
population fails to benefit from globalization.
Technologies not only fail to address the problems of
developing countries but also are exploited by
negative and illicit networks and incorporated into
destabilizing weapons. The global economy splits into
three: growth continues in developed countries; many
developing countries experience low or negative per
capita growth, resulting in a growing gap with the
developed world; and the illicit economy grows

Scenario Three: Regional Competition
Regional identities sharpen in Europe, Asia, and the
Americas, driven by growing political resistance in
Europe and East Asia to US global preponderance and
US-driven globalization and each region's increasing
preoccupation with its own economic and political
priorities....Given the preoccupation of the three
major regions with their own concerns, countries
outside these regions in Sub-Saharan Africa, the
Middle East, and Central and South Asia have few
places to turn for resources or political support.
Military conflict among and within the three major
regions does not materialize, but internal conflicts
increase in and around other countries left behind.

Scenario Four: Post-Polar World
US domestic preoccupation increases as the US economy
slows, then stagnates. Economic and political tensions
with Europe grow...Over time, these
geostrategic shifts ignite longstanding national
rivalries among the Asian powers, triggering increased
military preparations and hitherto dormant or covert
WMD programs....Given the priorities of Asia, the Americas, and Europe, countries outside these regions are marginalized, with virtually no sources of political or financial support.

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