Reflections after over 7 Decades of Acquiring Knowledge from Academia and Real life.

I was always way to smart for my own good and, because I was an Alpha Male, it took a while to get myself under control.  So after I graduated from Ohio University in 1965 after taking every economics course the school offered and getting an A in all save one course, economic history where I got a B because what could those old guys possibly know so I didn’t really pay attention,  I was drafted. Well now my real education started so the government needing lots of young Lieutenants talked me into applying for Officers Candidate School (OCS) and of course I accepted and I went to the last class that was actually trying to make good officers, meaning that we only graduated about half the class of some 220 plus that started.  That class was composed of either college gads or existing army Non Commissioned Officers (NCO’s) so we were the best there were. I graduated in the top  15% as I remember it

After getting my Commission (O5 331 798, today SSN) I went to Jump school and then to Special Warfare training  and by the fall of 67′ I was a First Lieutenant Green Beret (MOS 31542, today 18A) and on my way to Vietnam. I was assigned as Executive Officer (XO) of Special Force camp A-341 (today it would be ODA-341) Bu Dop in III Corps on the Cambodian border. It was a hot area as the infiltration into the south was in full press in preparation for what was to be TET at the end of January 1968 (Google it).  After two months of steady combat on patrols our camp was attacked and I and two other Green Berets were blown up when rounds hit an ammo dump. While in the hospital in the states I experience something that changed me forever.

On the night of December 7/8 1967 I was mortally wounded (all mortal wounds don’t kill you immediately). I was medivaced and sent to a hospital in Texas where I meet the grim reaper soon after arriving. He told me he was coming for me but I told him I wasn’t ready, he laughed at me and said he was going to come anyway. I told him it didn’t matter whether he came or not I just wasn’t going with him. But he wasn’t to be denied and so he visited me every night in the form of a large Bengal tiger and we battled all night for the rights to my soul. He was a very vicious and determined tiger and he tried his best to rip my soul from my body with his sharp teeth and claws but I was strong and stubborn and I would not let go. This battle lasted for two months and he chewed me down to 95 pounds from the 185 I was but in the end I prevailed and he disappeared and I was not dead and he had to settle for taking the souls of the two men who were standing next to me in Vietnam. God bless them I have still not forgotten them and hope to join them again some day in the not to distant future.

As I stated when I started to write this post I was a bit arrogant in the beginning and I was prideful of my intelligence and I had dismissed the belief in any GOD. But what I experienced in the previous paragraph showed me that my mind was totally dependent on my sensory input and that when something changed the input (shock from the wounds) that would change my world and I would slip into another reality and the worse part was I did not know I was in that dream. Those dreams were real!

Why does this matter well It taught me humility and the fact that once you have died and come back there was nothing on this earth that could ever bother me again; except maybe piss off my wife (that is not a good thing to do).  The other thing it taught me took a bit longer as a couple of decades later in the 90’s I started to do research on why we were in Vietnam since it was such disaster to the country (I lost over 58,000 brothers), how could that have happened.

My Team in Nam

Well now that research opened a real bag of worms!

It started with reading a bunch of books had been written by then and since I was a former Green Beret I used those old record as a start. Back in the day Green Berets were trained to be dropped behind enemy lines and start Guerilla resistance operations against who we would be fighting; much as the WW II OSS as that was our heritage.  Each group had a specific area of the world that we studied in detail and language training always part of the training.  So why was this important, we’ll its very simple; we were trained in methods to bring down a sitting government in another country; this presupposes that we are at war with them. The reason Green Berets were in Vietnam was the military assumed that if we were trained to be guerillas we would be good at fighting them. That might have been true, in theory, but it would have also been required that the Green Berets were running the show not the regular army and that the operation was not micro manage by the politicians.  But enough on that disaster, its a story for another day.

So back to my story, so after I had read several dozen books on the war I came to the conclusion that our government had no clue what they were doing or even how to do what they thought they were doing.  Along the way before I actually understood that I did write a book about my experiences in Vietnam, albeit from a naive point of view.  After finishing my first round of research I wrote a second book on how to prevent another Vietnam which obviously no one read as we are now in another long war with no end in sight.

In 1997 one of my daughters bought me a books as she knew I loved reading about history politics and government it was called The Fourth Turning and it was written by William Strauss and Neil Howe, who were the ones that coined the terms Generation X and the Millennials. This book should be read by everyone as it has predicted very accurately all that has happened over the past 21 years. So especially after 9/11 and then the economics crash of 2008 I was reading extensively about everything I could get my hands on on climate change the war on terror and politics. below is a sample.

I have read four anthologies on Moral or Political Philosophy which are: Classics of Political & Moral Philosophy first and second Editions by Steven M. Cahn, History of Political Philosophy Third Edition by Leo Strauss and Joseph Cropsey, On Politics by Alan Ryan and my favorite Natural Right and History by Leo Strauss. I have also read Smith’s The Theory of Moral Sentiments and most of the other better individual works from St. Tomas Aquinas, Machiavelli, Hobbes, Locke, Montesquieu, Rousseau and of course Plato and Aristotle to name a few. Related but not directly is Alexis De Tocqueville’s Democracy in America one of the best books ever written on why America is great.

Just A sample of my books.

With a major in economics I have read and studied Adam Smith’s The Wealth of Nations, Karl Marx Capital Vol I, II, and III, and John Maynard Keynes The General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money and lastly Milton & Rose Friedman’s Free To Choose.

But before I continue, but keep in mind that I now have a deep distrust of the Federal government (both parties), I was designing fuel cells for the Department of Defense (DOD) before 9/11 and since I was working in the energy field and since I also thought global warming was a real concern since environmental issues. pollution, were real I thought I would read up on the subject. Since I had worked at GE building electric vehicles I have good knowledge in energy related issues and it wasn’t hard to find the sources to get caught up on the subject. So I started to read about global warming, as it was then called, and the more I read the more I saw that something was seriously wrong . I will say that I was surprised at what I found as I am a very technical person who watched on TV man walk on the moon and I never suspected that science had been taken over by the politicians. But I will tell you now with certainty that what we are being told about climate is a total fabrication. I did take Climatology in college by the way.

What I writing here now is a prelude to a book I’m now writing on Moral Philosophy and I think I will finish it by the end of next month. When I do I’ll start putting sections or chapters on my blog so I will be able to get my view out. It is in line with the started purpose of my blog to inform the public to the best of my ability on current subjects.

I will add one more thing as a teaser — if you remember I explained when I started writing this post how back in the late 60’s the US Military taught me how to bring down a government. Now just so it isn’t misunderstood that is a massive effort that one person can not do and I am a bit to old for that kind of work. What I am saying is that since I was trained to do something its easy to see when that training is being used somewhere.

My Office

More to come later.

One comment on “Reflections after over 7 Decades of Acquiring Knowledge from Academia and Real life.

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