Saturday, March 05, 2005

Anchors Aweigh

I'm generally against change because it usually makes things worse, but I was pleased to see a special order speech in the U.S. House this week by Rep. Walter Jones, a Republican of North Carolina, who has introduced H.R. 34 (available here as a PDF file), which would rename the Department of the Navy the "Department of the Navy and Marine Corps". Jones spoke about this on March 1, 2005, in the House. See the PDF file of his remarks (in the center column) here.

I applaud this legislation as it would accurately reflect what the agency does. And on that note, the Department of Defense itself would be better served by assuming the Department of the Army's old name: the Department of War. As we've seen in the past five decades, DOD does little defending and a lot of war-making abroad. That name would accurately describe its activities. Plus "the War Department" simply sounds better. But they have no sense of euphony in Washington for the original name of the DOD was the "National Military Establishment", an unfortunately chosen acronym. (Go ahead, pronounce it.) Jones's bill previously passed the House but died in the Senate. Let's hope he gets it on the statute books this Congress.


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