Just Asking

The short answer: I would never work with the U.S. Army in any way as long as our policies resemble anything remotely similar to what’s going on right now. There has never been a more unpopular war than now. The Army is only making its numbers by reducing its aptitude and recruiting goals. The kids it is talking to were raised in crowded media environments—they’re not the children of the ’50s who responded to ‘Be all that you can be.’ . . . It is less important to have a beloved line than strong content in its ad message. It is easy to sit in an armchair and pick off a line. It is a different experience to be across a desk from a potential recruit. . . . ‘Army of one.’ I liked that line. That told them: I am important and I am not alone. And that was huge. Up until this war, that worked great. Now they’ve seen our Army go in and smash a fairly large army in the Middle East. . . . ‘Army strong’ is a certain kind of strong. It has a null ‘you’ implied and a null ‘be’ verb. So I think ‘Army strong’ could work. I was already through the draft in 1969. They didn’t want me then and now it’s my turn not to want them. It seems to be too simple and basic. It does not imply any benefit to me as a potential member. It is a mere brand attribute as opposed to anything aspirational or challenging. In short, I think they missed on this one.

We have seen the enemy and it is us.