Family leave + ‘Space Force’ ~ OMG

Dear President Trump,

A little while ago Laura read me your inane monologue from today’s Business Roundtable. I especially like the parts about how unflattering the light from the new light bulbs is and how they make people look orange. Your bit about being vain and not liking to be in light that makes you look orange was over the top silly given how much bronzer make-up you use and the pukey orange tinge you rock all the time. One would think you’d be buying up those light bulbs and installing them in every light socket you can find. Oh what a piece of work….

But here’s the real thing I’m choosing to get worked up about today – the defense bill that is apparently poised to pass through the House next week that would give you a new Space Force in exchange for 12 weeks of paid family leave for federal workers. I saw the headline in the WP yesterday and couldn’t bring myself to open it, but I finally stepped up and read it this morning.

That is one hell of a pairing. Who comes up with this shit? On the one hand we have the most down to earth, common sense, positive thing ever when it comes to paid parental leave for a huge chunk of the US workforce, and on the other we have an insane out-there trophy thing for you that just perpetuates all that is wrong with warring nation-state shit. Seriously, what a mind-f*ck. And what an awful, cynical trap you’ve laid. For anyone who votes against the bill, you all will come out swinging, claiming they don’t support working families and babies, and for anyone who votes for the bill, you all will claim they LOVE your idea of being locked and loaded out in space. It is mind, and heart, boggling.

And apparently the Space Force cheerleaders, led by Mark Esper (the new Jim Mattis, aka Secretary of Defense) and Barbara Barrett (the new Heather Wilson, aka Air Force Secretary), are all in and not wasting time as they try to nail down the details. Here’s the weighty stuff the WP article says is being considered:

  • how service members would be transferred from the Air Force to the Space Force
  • what Space Force uniforms would look like
  • what rank structure would be used
  • where Space Force headquarters will be housed in the Pentagon
  • whether the Space Force will have its own security forces on the ground or will rely on other branches of service

There’s not even a nod to the possibility that this is a terrible idea that is likely to lead to yet another out- of-control arms race that will serve no one but Halliburton and the like (and whoever’s palms need to be greased for those guys, yes guys, to get the contracts they want). Not a peep about how wrong it is to turn space into yet another territorial pissing game for idiots like you. Just hey – what should the uniforms look like? Will the Space Force gang get office windows in the Pentagon?

The Space Force shit aside, you and Vladimir really have succeeded in dumbing down and coarsening the civic conversation to the point where we might as well not pretend we have such a thing anymore.

We can’t get you out of there fast enough.

May we be safe from vicious vanity projects.
May we be willing to ask the real questions.
May we not make our families’ health contingent on building yet another arsenal.
May we have the courage and resolve to stand up for peace.

Tracy Simpson

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