25A Voluntary Draft vs. a Mandatory One
- May 8, 2002What are your thoughts about making the IDF a voluntary army, and about
voluntary draft vs. a mandatory one in general. The recent situation
seemed to inspire me a lot in this regard. I recall that Ayn Rand opposed
a mandatory draft, but I don't know in what book she expressed her
sentiments against it, nor read this particular text of hers.
In any case, here are my thought on the issue:
1. First of all, a military with a mandatory draft has little motivation
to improve the conditions it offers those who join it, improve the way
they are treated and they feel about it, etc. It tends to put people in
arbitrary positions, regardless of their capabilities or desires, and
other such non-competitive side-effects.
2. More over, a malicious government can decide to abuse a military so it
follows its whims, and involve in an activity that its soldiers and/or the
public in general does not approve of.
3. The word "must" is a very big de-motivator. We can see it in the
increasing number of people who choose to get a release from the army in
a myriad of ways. I got a release too, (albeit I actually wanted to join
the army in the first place), and since then I heard from many people who
served their before their academic studies, that I missed very little, and
that their service was a waste of time. I've encountered a very small
number of people who claimed they enjoyed their army service.
4. I'm not sure that a non-mandatory draft necessarily implies less people
joining. I take the stand that the majority of people out there are
responsible and would voluntarily join the military if they see it fit.
Those who do not wish to join only de-motivate the rest and make the lives
of those who do miserable, anyhow. Would you like to be forced to work in
your workplace? (If only the Technion understood that and gave me a 4 1/2
years/115 points degree - ;-)).
An army can also work for creating a tradition of joining the army,
voluntarily, willingly and happily a posteriori to making it voluntary.
5. The army can potentially get more qualified engineers or other
qualified people of such sort, because some people would decide to join it
only after they finish their studies.
Naturally, you can see that I'm almost entirely convinced that a voluntary
army would be a good thing. What are your thoughts about it?
Shlomi Fish shlomif@...
Home Page: http://t2.technion.ac.il/~shlomif/
Home E-mail: shlomif@...
He who re-invents the wheel, understands much better how a wheel works.
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