Thursday, August 4, 2016

Muscular Deferments : Trump (and Florey)

Viewing news photos & videos, I am always amazed at just how many prominent military-service dodging 'chicken-hawks' are big, tall, muscular and verbally aggressive.

Or, not surprisingly, how often they garnered outstanding athletic records as young men.

Only to discover that these outstanding athletic achievements were won at the very same time as their military service deferments were 'won' : on account of newly discovered 'medical' conditions.

One has only to note the small size of many front line infantry conscripts in press photos, something replicated in every nation in every big war, to wonder how on earth do young men so excel as sports and yet fail a medical test that even the small and weedy pass ?

I don't think for one moment that all top athletes set themselves up to fail the military medical -- only those with a desire to not risk their futures by serving their country and with well to do, well-connected parents in agreement with that notion.

We all know the concept of smart lawyers winning their case by astute 'judge-shopping' --- well off well connected people, in times of the draft, can do the same with doctors.

For there are always doctors who are eager to curry favour with prominent people on the same side of the political, ethnic and religious fence as themselves --- and the unusually fat fee doesn't hurt either.

One just has to work to find them - and then top athlete Donald Trump - presto ! - has minor bone spurs that just won't let him serve his country, even in a rear echelon supply formation, but will let him play hard enough to win many quasi-combat-like sports.

Another chicken-hawk: Sir Howard Florey.

(He won the Nobel prize from the war-dodging Swedes for trying to prevent the use of 'impure' natural penicillin during WWII.

In WWI, he was equally an outstanding and very combative young athlete at the very same time some friendly doctor found he was totally unfit to serve his country.

Interestingly, chicken-hawks more often than not, are not only outstanding athletic draft-dodgers as young men : as middle aged men they are unusually physically combative with colleagues (who are usually smaller and lower in the professional hierarchy than themselves).

One thinks here of Florey and Vannevar Bush both punching out colleagues they disagreed with.

So big, so fit, so aggressive, so patriotic in times of peace --- so unwell in times of war...

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