America must always lead on the world stage. If we don't, no one else will. The military that you have joined is, and always will be, the backbone of that leadership. But U.S. military action cannot be the only - or even primary - component of our leadership in every instance. Just because we have the best hammer does not mean that every problem is a nail.
Personally, I think government is a tool, like a hammer. You can use a hammer to build or you can use a hammer to destroy; there is nothing intrinsically good or evil about the hammer itself. It is the purposes to which it is put and the skill with which it is used that determine whether the hammer's work is good or bad.
When we hit a nail with a hammer the whole of the shock received by the large head of the nail passes into a point without any of it being lost, although it is only a point. If the hammer and head of the nail were infinitely big, if would be just the same; the point of the nail would transmit this infinite shock at the point to which it was applied. Extreme affliction, which means physical pain, distress of the soul, and social degradation all at the same time, is a nail whose point is applied at the very... Read more »
Steed threatens steed, in high and boastful neighs Piercing the night's dull ear; and from the tents The armorers accomplishing the knights, With busy hammers closing rivets up, Give dreadful note of preparation.
The serious reader in the age of technology is a rebel by definition: a protester without a placard, a Luddite without hammer or bludgeon. She reads on planes to picket the antiseptic nature of modern travel, on commuter trains to insist on individualism in the midst of the herd, in hotel rooms to boycott the circumstances that separate her from her usual sources of comfort and stimulation, during office breaks to escape from the banal conversation of office mates, and at home to revolt against the pervasive and mind-deadening irrelevance of television.
Do as little harm to others as you can; make any sacrifice for your true friends; be responsible for yourself and ask nothing of others; and grab all the fun you can. Don't give much thought to yesterday, don't worry about tomorrow, live in the moment, and trust that your existence has meaning even when the world seems to be all blind chance and chaos. When life lands a hammer blow in your face, do your best to respond to the hammer as if it had been a cream pie.