Farewell. The Flying Pig Has Left The Building.

Steve Hynd, August 16, 2012

After four years on the Typepad site, eight years total blogging, Newshoggers is closing it's doors today. We've been coasting the last year or so, with many of us moving on to bigger projects (Hey, Eric!) or simply running out of blogging enthusiasm, and it's time to give the old flying pig a rest.

We've done okay over those eight years, although never being quite PC enough to gain wider acceptance from the partisan "party right or wrong" crowds. We like to think we moved political conversations a little, on the ever-present wish to rush to war with Iran, on the need for a real Left that isn't licking corporatist Dem boots every cycle, on America's foreign misadventures in Afghanistan and Iraq. We like to think we made a small difference while writing under that flying pig banner. We did pretty good for a bunch with no ties to big-party apparatuses or think tanks.

Those eight years of blogging will still exist. Because we're ending this typepad account, we've been archiving the typepad blog here. And the original blogger archive is still here. There will still be new content from the old 'hoggers crew too. Ron writes for The Moderate Voice, I post at The Agonist and Eric Martin's lucid foreign policy thoughts can be read at Democracy Arsenal.

I'd like to thank all our regular commenters, readers and the other bloggers who regularly linked to our posts over the years to agree or disagree. You all made writing for 'hoggers an amazingly fun and stimulating experience.

Thank you very much.

Note: This is an archive copy of Newshoggers. Most of the pictures are gone but the words are all here. There may be some occasional new content, John may do some posts and Ron will cross post some of his contributions to The Moderate Voice so check back.


Monday, May 28, 2012

The Truth Hurts

Commentary By Ron Beasley

Chris Hayes poked the monkey this Memorial Day weekend when he suggested that the valor and heroism of US troops was being used to justify war.


Doug Mataconis objected to the timing but really never condemded the message.  Doug's post generated a really great comments thread which is worth checking out.

I am a veteran and was not at all offended  by Hayes' comments.  Here is my reality based comment:

I am a veteran � a Vietnam veteran and for most of that war there was a draft. But I don�t think that the draft is really relevant. When you are in combat you are fighting for one thing and one thing alone � to keep you and your buddies alive. Are you a hero when you throw yourself on a grenade? Of course you are, but you didn�t do it for country, freedom or Democracy � you did it to save the lives of your buddies. You will never form a stronger bond than you do with your fellow soldiers � that includes marriage.
Should we recognize those heroes? Of course we should but we shouldn�t forget what was on their minds as they were fighting � survival.

Radely Balko commented:

Hayes� point is that the word �hero� connotes a noble mission. I guess I just don�t see how this is even debatable. It�s precisely the reason why we don�t call Nazi soldiers or Iraqi insurgents heroes. They too were willing to fight, kill, and die for a cause. But because we find their cause objectionable, we�d never consider calling them heroes.

IT may be the message is right but was the timing inappropriate?  Emptywheel:

But move beyond the patina of insensitivity, and Chris Hayes was quite right. We need desperately to unhinge the valor of our troops from the moral squalor of our leaders. Memorial Day may be a touchy time to hear that, but it needs to be said.

It may be insensitive to say this on Memorial Day what a better time to get people's attention. Balko talks about a "noble mission".  When was the last time we had one of those?  Certainly not in my lifetime and I'm 66 years old .  Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan are certainly not wars I would consider "noble missions". 

What better time to question war but the day that we remember those who died at war.  I lost friends and relatives in Vietnam.  They died for nothing and the administration of Lyndon Johnson knew they were going to die for nothing in 1965 but the war went on and 10s of thousands died.  Is there a better day to discuss the "moral squalor of our leaders" - I think not,

Bravo Chris Hayes for going where few would dare to go.  I am a veteran - a Vietnam veteran. and I was not the least bit offended .


  1. For us it was more "just keep the ship from sinking," but your point is well made.

  2. Damn right Hayes was correct. But, we can't have our precious illusions shattered it might mean Americans would have to re-evaluate themselves and their nation's histroy. And everyone knows this was a despoiled wastleand with no one living here until god touched Europeans to tame the savage land and bring about the most exceptional Nation ever conceived in the eye of jesus.
    But, hey when $10 TRILLION dollars was spent on various Department of War Defense bills and equipment what's a nobel lie about how honorable and noble War is?

  3. I'll meet you a quarter way or half way...whatever.
    It was when the ruling class started thumbing its nose at the
    very authentically American Monroe Doctrine that the United States began to sully its praiseworthy Euro-American ideals.