Thank You for Your Service

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Thank You for Your Service, DreamWorks Studios.

There are no human antagonists in Thank You for Your Service (out on DVD in January), the fictional film based on the nonfiction book of the same name by Washington Post reporter David Finkel. The book follows members of the 2nd Battalion of the 16th Infantry Regiment after they returned to Kansas following a tour of duty in Iraq.

Two short scenes in Iraq bookend the film, but the bulk of Thank You for Your Service focuses on the veterans' struggles against other unseen enemies—the Department of Veterans Affairs (V.A.), post-traumatic stress disorder, the aimlessness of the Iraq War.

"He did his job, now do yours!" one veteran's wife yells at a V.A. bureaucrat while trying to get her husband mental health services. A psychiatrist tells her hundreds of thousands of people are trying to get into in-patient facilities. He's a veteran, she responds. But that's what the psychiatrist meant: hundreds of thousands of veterans.

One vet suffering traumatic brain injury says he's jealous of a soldier who lost a limb, because that's a visible disability. He'd rather have an issue like that than something no one can see. "What about an ear?" No, that would make him look like "some kind of freak."

The veterans themselves can be invisible too. "Did you kick some ass?" a taxi driver asks one of the vets. It's as close to a thank-you as the film gets.

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  1. FUCK all the bahstahds and their “thank you fer yer service”!!!! THIS is why I feel that way…

    When I served in the military, they were all “Constitution this that and the other”, enticing me to volunteer to get my bod shot at with bullets? (That never happened, fortunately, but I did volunteer for it). Oaths to “defend the Constitution against enemies, foreign and domestic”, and ribbons on my chest, and what-not. Make me feel GOOD about (at least potentially) getting shot at, when it suits Government Almighty?

    But now, as a juror, I am NOT allowed to know about my historical common-law right to “jury nullification”, and I sure as hell am NOT allowed to drag my copy of the USA Constitution into the jury deliberation room!
    The Constitution is reserved for the Highest of High Priests, when it comes time to interpret it! But you never see the High Priests in the foxholes? Getting shot at, to DEFEND the Constitution, is reserved for the grunts and peons!

    1. Yes, I do sincerely believe that a prime requirement for serving as a justice on the SCROTUS, is that FIRST, ye MUST git yer ass shot at, in foxholes, defending said USA cunts-tits-ution… THEN maybe you’ll stop this utter bullshit about, “We’re not punishing YOU, we are merely punishing your PROPERTY!”

      Here’s my fave power fantasy: Put these assholes in jail, and put cups of water, and sammitches… Into their hands… In order to snatch them right back! And then explain to them, “We’re not punishing YOU, we are merely punishing your PROPERTY!”

      Maybe they’d get a clue about, property == life…

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