A society that phased out Armistice day in the 1950s. A society where decades after the lessons of Vietnam, it feels like the people who run the Pentagon specialize in undeclared/unwon wars. A society in 2023, that can’t stay out of or win undeclared wars, but has come to offer up a big Memorial Day freebies for veterans marketing campaign. Way to go guys.

This may be some sort of post-Vietnam guilt at work. The guilt doesn’t seem to work towards ending decades of undeclared/unwon wars in distant lands.

Do the companies that offer free Memorial Day 2023 chow advocate for phasing out undeclared wars?

A society where a giant flag ritual at the next ball game will make it all good.

From 2015:

Each November, school teachers across America host Veterans Day assemblies– and promote the idea that The Troops are in distant lands- fighting for American rights and freedoms.

Growing up in the 60s & 70s- veterans were all around- church, school, Boy Scout leaders, family, the neighborhood, etc. It was all just an average thing. These folks weren’t seen as a separate part of American society.

In the 60s & 70s I never attended a Veterans Day assembly at school.

There were none.

Today, in Washington State, these assemblies are mandatory.

The VA tells teachers that The Troops are Defending Liberty and Freedom.

Back in the 60s and 70s there were probably enough veterans around to remove most of the mystique, or maybe those veterans thought it was all just an average thing and did not want to be seen as a separate part of American society, or get head of the line parking spots over at the grocery store.

People weren’t stepping over to say “Thanks for your service” to my Dad- who did time in the Navy in the 50s- but looked just like anyone else out in public.

These guys weren’t lining up for free dinner promotions marketed by major restaurant chains.

Where are the veterans who don’t want free meals, discounts, head of the line privileges at the airport, etc.

Original blog:


Growing Up In The Cold War Era


The US federal government now promotes the idea that people who did time in uniform are all about making a list of free deals they can score during one of several holidays honoring those who were once considered routine Americans, but now are seen as a separate part of American society:

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It turns out that I am OK with whatever veterans and Americans in general want to do with their time during federal holidays. I am OK with whatever businesses want to do with their marketing plans.

I put together my thoughts on all this back in 2012:

Memorial Day- long weekend/BBQ guilt trips


Hostile Forces in Distant Lands

Decades After The Lessons of Vietnam

A Free and Honest Society?

Cultural Honesty

Random Thoughts – Recruiting Crisis

Most And Least Meaningful Federal Holidays

Operating A Camera In A Public Place

Moving Towards A One Size Fits All Society – Climate And Environment

Thank You For Our Freedom?

Why do we speak of the US Armed Forces as if they function as some sort of giant civil rights organization?

Freedom Comes And Goes – Joint Chiefs of Staff Play No Part








Early winter morning – Point No Point

Sadly, the Fresnel lens has gone dark.

Local info here.