These truths to be self-evident, that all men are created as a member of Congress, I get to have a lot of really interesting people and the experts on what they're talking about. This is the podcast for insights into the issues. China, bioterrorism, Medicare for all in depth discussions, breaking it down into simple terms. We hold, we hold. We hold these truths. We hold these truths with Dan Crenshaw and Gallbladders. Let's dive into this.
Mike, thanks for being on. Congressman Mike Wallace on the show. I prefer colonel, but that's OK, Congressman, to, uh. Did you vote for what you did? Vote for my amendment to make the Space Force U.S. Navy ranks? I did.
Yeah, I did. I did. I think they need a big break from the Air Force, total cultural. But I think they've escaped me on this one. They have not just because the Senate's a bunch of boring old senators and doesn't want to put my amendment in.
But I'm coming for you. Space Force. Hey, I'm pro space forces. The first bill I put in no such thing as a Colonel Kirk. Captain Kirk. Yeah, it's got to be Captain Kirk. That's all right. Well, we agree.
Army and Navy, we got to get them out from under the thumb of the Air Force, though they do need a whole separate culture. On a serious note, I agree. So, Mike Walters, what district in Florida, Florida, six northeast Florida, south suburbs of Jacksonville, down to Cape Canaveral. Daytona is the is the hub. So got to love NASCAR, got to love beaches and got love motorcycles. And you're still in the reserves.
Still in the National Guard. OK, National Guard still jumping. Colonel, Special Forces, Green Beret. Yeah. Right now you have an interesting background. We came into Congress together, but you would you would sort of because you were in the reserves, you'd switch between active duty going to Afghanistan and the Special Forces. Which group?
Twentieth group. And what was what was unique about the experience is my day job. So 20th group is, you know, reserve component Special Forces SEALs also have have a reserve component. But that meant I had to have a day job. And for many years it was as a policy director under Rumsfeld and then Secretary Gates and then eventually in the Bush White House. And I had this fascinating there I was in the in the West Wing. Mr. President, this should be the policy.
Then I had to be the only idiot in Washington to go do it. And, you know, better make sure the strategy's right off your butts on the line. But the fun part would be which you could appreciate then coming back to Washington, put in the coat and tie back on and saying, hey, boss, what you said to do was not what we're doing out on the ground and to try to fix things. That's awesome.
And. Look, let's get right to it, Wilkison ruins everything.
It ruins Dr. Seuss, it ruins paw patrol, it ruins Antamina and frankly, it's ruining the military because it might also be defined in this sense as excessive political correctness.
And I think is and probably means a lot more than that, you know, critical race theory, identity politics. But frankly, that's infiltrating the military, too. We're going to talk about that. You you and I have both received plenty of letters from active duty personnel telling us what's really going on. Kind of reminds me the kind of letters that I get from parents talking about what's happening in their schools. This is really bad luck because it's kind of funny when Aunt Jemima gets canceled.
I mean, it's it's it's not funny, but it's a little funny.
But this is serious. I mean, the priorities of our military is supposed to be war fighting. And that's literally it is the Department of Defense. It is not the the Department of Social Engineering. This stuff really matters for the safety of our country, for the protection of a very, very sacred institution. I mean, the military has the highest credibility in the public right now. And we're seeing all sorts of nonsense like the Tucker Carlson thing. Like we saw that this week.
Everybody was blown up over that. We'll get to that later. I think you and I both kind of think that one's a bit silly. But, you know, there's some there's some things to unpack, some important things and there's some things to unpack. But like a lot of people are missing a lot of other stuff, some of the training going on, the funding of trans gender reassignment surgery, although I just heard the Joint Chiefs actually put a pause on that.
They're like Joe Biden, Dick. So thank you for that, Joint Chiefs.
You know, but there's a couple of seals that are coming out this way. We're gonna have hard conversation about women in the military or in the combat roles specifically. I think people need to understand that a little bit more. They don't hear from from people who understand combat all that often. And so let's have a candid conversation about that. I think so. Do you guys have an ethos in this Special Forces? You do. You know we do.
You know, you have it memorized. Oh, it's yeah. It's like no press only bear.
Yeah, no, it's Latin, so it's hard for SEALs to understand, don't speak multiple languages, but it's to free the oppressed which is so the Green Berets is saying but actually it was under was under Kennedy.
But you have a whole like list of things I forgot. Oh it's like Socotra. Yes. Soft cap mass pretty well but yeah that's that's some good stuff. So we have an ethos, right. It's definitely better than anything you guys have.
But, you know, there was an uproar because it says it says things like, I am that man.
Right. Like it's gendered. Right. Because there's only men. There's only male Navy SEALs always has been. The currently always is. And you can try out if you're a woman, but nobody only one ever has. And she was injured before she even got into training. Sure. You know, the question is like, doesn't matter. This is always the debate, right? You know what? It just give an inch. Like, what does it matter?
And I don't know. I mean, is there validity to that? Because on the other hand, it's like when you give an inch, they take a million more miles.
Yeah. For me, it's always been an issue of of standards, not necessarily gender. Right. I mean, the standards are what they are. The artillery round weighs what it weighs. You know, that rucksack is ninety pounds, throwing a two hundred pound man on your shoulders, which you need to be prepared to do and get, you know, uphill to the helicopter under fire. Those are the standards. And we've gone through an evolution in the military to say all moss', not just the supporting roles, all military occupational specialties should be open.
I'm OK. I'm fine with that. Everyone should be able to compete. And if a woman meets the standards that that we've set to be in combat as an infantrymen or as an artillery man or tank or a tank operator, fine. Well, what I found over time is that we open up those specialties. There are plenty of women there, plenty of athletic women that will out outperform the average male. But there are physiological differences and we recognize those.
That's why we have men and women sports. And, you know, that's why we have those various differences. And what I find is the same groups pounding the table to allow women access to all of these all of these roles then a couple of years down the line are then pounding the table and saying, well, why is only a certain percentage getting through? You must be you must have systematic, discriminatory policies.
And then it becomes that's where it gets tough and then it becomes a pressure to lower the standards. Right. And now it's equity based rather than equality based. And I know you've talked a lot about that. Yeah.
And that's that's the real danger is the lowering of our standards within are what are most demanding in our most elite forces.
Yeah, the reason I actually I guess I didn't even explain to the audience what I was talking about. The reason the ethos caused a stir was. Look, it's gendered, it was it says man, like if you look up old versions of it, it uses the word man and then they change it to not use the word man. Maybe they use Cele or some gender neutral term.
And I want to get everything you talked about, about just, you know, women in combat and everything. But I'm actually starting, you know, a softer approach to that, which is like, again, does it even matter when you change little things here?
And there is is this political correctness run amuck or does it matter? And look, because I've had conversations with flag officers about this when I when I'm like, what are you guys doing? Like, why why did you let that transgender seal go on CNN? That's that's politicizing the military as an active duty seal, you know, not even out of SEAL command anymore.
Now, it turns out SEAL teams did not let him go on CNN. The Navy did because the he or she can't even be in the SEAL teams anymore because they want to transition anyway. The point is, is I have this honest conversation with people, which is like they're like, hey, we're trying to do an honest job here, like we're because my goal is still to to man equip and train and equip and train my force and make sure they're ready to go to combat.
Yes. I realize there's this whole other political world out there that want me to do this. And if I have to give a couple inches, fine. If it gets them off my back and on my side, I'm like, look, you can never give a couple inches because as you do, they ask for another mile.
They always do the work. The WOAK brigade always comes for you. And frankly, I kind of think both sides are right in a way, and I'm not sure how to balance that.
I actually don't have a problem with the kind of the the neutralisation in terms of of the language. If you're going to open it up to everyone at the end of the day, I just want the best I want the best pilots, the best cyber warriors, the best deals, the Green Berets already the best. But I want the best in the best. Yeah, right. No, we say about Green Berets, nothing handsome, great beards.
You sometimes good hair. Oh, please, please.
You're projecting great shot. Projecting what the point is. But the point is, we want the best Americans out there fighting our wars. And I think the point that a lot of people are trying to make is that the military needs to be about winning our wars, not social experimentation, period.
Because I guarantee you, I'll come back for. Yeah, because I guarantee you that's what the Russian military is about is as poor as it is. They're putting the best they possibly can. And it's definitely about what the Chinese military is about right now as we speak, their social engineering with genetic Crispi and experimenting with how to create super soldiers.
Well, one thing it's important to point out to people is women have always had a very robust role in special operations.
There's there's this idea that all of a sudden they're allowed in and it's going to like open it up to women. Women have always been part of special operations in a very profound way. Look, if you're looking at this, there's a whole other side of special operations, you know, that let's let's call it a sneak peak stuff.
Women are very quickly on the clandestine. Yeah. Clandestine side. Women are highly suited for this because this is what is what is involved in this and is talking to people. It's eliciting information. You know, maybe you need to play a role. Maybe that role needs to be a woman's role. And and, look, the transgender Navy SEAL just can't play the role.
It's just not going to work. So women have always played that role. Also, there's female engagement teams. I've done many operations in Iraq and Afghanistan where you have to bring women out.
Men are I mean, men are precluded. You're not allowed to do that with half the populace right there. Right. So we did that hawk. I mean, we would pull in nurses, military police, women pilots, you name it, anybody that that could go out and had the physicality to to go on the mission. And they were invaluable. My fiancee was a military intelligence officer with more combat tours, and I have and in both invasions.
Right. So this notion that they don't play that women don't play a critical role, I do disagree with. And they I mean, whether it's pilots, cyber warriors, intel officers, you name it. But I think where, as you were talking about, where the crux of the debate comes down is in the areas that were physicality is so important in that biological differences in that mission.
So there's there's a woman on the mission.
So your average your average person listening right now knows nothing about what we do, is probably thinking, well, if they're already out there, then why can't they just be a seal? And here's my answer to that, because a seal has to do everything required of us in in the heat of combat at any given moment and in and it gets really, really ugly really, really fast.
And if you have a trident on your chest, it means that you have to be able to to to engage in that and to activate right away.
So you might just be, again, like or a Special Forces tab.
But I take your point. Yeah. And yeah. You know, if you want to operate at that standard. But the point is, is like if you're wearing the tab, if you're wearing the Trident, things are required of you.
You have to be able to take over the squaddie. If you take over the platoon, like right away and lead people in combat, you have to be able to fight a 200 pound man off of you who just jumped on you.
You have to be able to pull your buddy out of off. The X is what we call it. It just got blown up and they're missing their legs and screaming and you have to be able to fight while you're doing that. And so, you know, not just because you're on the mission and people don't realize there's a difference.
You're an innate we call in the enablers. You're one of you're in addition to the mission. But I want to be clear, too. I am absolutely confident there are women out there who can do those roles.
There might be it's how do we how do we do that? As how do we take. That to scale right and cross across the entire special operations force and and my point has been and will continue to be, what are the standards to be a seal, to be a Green Beret, to be a ranger and whoever meets them meets them. But what if whether that's two percent of women or 58 percent of women, it doesn't matter. And but that's where we have to tow the line.
The problem is, if it's only 15 percent or 20 percent or 30 percent, then those same groups come back around later and say, no, you're being discriminatory. You got to lower the standards to let more in. That's the problem. And we've seen that over the years. Certainly hints of it in the Obama administration especially. I'm still not sure if we're going to see that now. I haven't seen hints of it. The other thing is, at least in at least in the SEAL teams, those standards have been have been set in concrete.
It wasn't always the case that all the crazy crap we did in training and Budd's was was justified and attached to an actual mission requirement.
Now, it is like like this is why we carry logs up and down the sand berms. This is why we freeze ourselves. I don't think you're seeing it in the SEALs yet, but the Army, a much bigger force, they are starting to see it. It's always driven me nuts that we have men's physical fitness standards and women's physical fitness standards like, wait a minute, the tank, the artillery round, you know, the the the rucksack there, they're all the same regardless of gender.
So the Army's now move to which was a big move in the last couple of years to say, you know what, the standards for physical standards for infantry is very different than, say, a personnel clerk. And we're going to make those standards different and we're going to combine it's all it's all one standard regardless of gender. Well, now, here we are a couple of years later and and various activist groups are coming back and saying, wait a minute, you can't.
You can't. A woman can't get promoted in the infantry or in the armor artillery because these physical standards are too high. So therefore, you need to lower. So actually, we are we're seeing that in the combat arms. I don't think it's it's really happened yet in special operations, but I fear it's coming. Yeah, well, special operations, I think, is inoculated itself better because we saw it coming, but you're absolutely right about what you're saying.
You know who agrees with you is Capt. Kristen Geist. So she wrote an op ed in February of this year where she talks about the first female ranger. Yeah, she's. So she got her Ranger tab in 2015.
So just to be clear, people need to understand, like Ranger School, frankly, probably should have always been open to everybody because it's it's not a it's not a selection course.
People don't realize that. You don't you don't graduate Ranger School and you're a ranger. That's not how it works. You go back to whatever unit you're from. So a lot of guys go to Ranger School. I think she was a pilot.
I'm not sure. I think actually she was infantry in the National Guard. She was so infantry.
But there was another pilot woman who it's a it's a it's primarily a leadership school. It is.
That starves you. I mean, I lost thirty one pounds that sleep to provide you. I probably should.
It's a good diet, but you know, it puts you under the most extreme duress and says lead your men and women who are also starving, sleep deprived, sleep deprived, you know, hallucinating over that mountain, across that stream. Conduct the mission to standard. Right. Get the job done. It has a very high attrition rate, but at the end of the day, it is about finding, you know, digging deep within yourself, finding your own flaws and then and being able to dig deep and lead in the most extreme conditions that you probably find in training.
And, yeah, like it's a leadership course. Yeah. Again, I think females always should have been in it. But anyway, they have been for a while now, a few have made it through and but she argues one of the worst things you can do is these different standards for men and women in combat roles like I in the Navy.
I kind of get it because there's a lot of jobs look like warfighting is 95 percent logistics. Like there's a lot of jobs where you're at it, you're at a radar the entire time. So so I kind of get the different standards for men and women to to allow everybody to.
But I think those are different standards by what kind of job you're doing. Sure. I mean, but man or woman for infantry, this is different.
And this is the point that that that she is making here. That you agree with that I agree with, which is for these kind of roles, you have to be the same.
And like she makes it from a feminist standpoint, she's like, look, I don't want to be ostracized because people think I have a lesser standard than they do. I want to operate at the same standards so that I'm not ostracized. I need to be part of the team. This is extremely important for unit cohesion, for mutual respect. That's an emphatic, reasonable thing to say.
Think she's she is she's speaking out against tokenism. And tokenism is is demeaning to women. It really is.
You know, it's it's it's worth pointing out some of the stats on this. The stuff has been studied quite a bit. So calm did look at it. Marines looked at it. Look all male, all male rifleman squads outperformed mixed mixed gender squads by some kind of margin. Injury rates are double for women than they are for men. So. Look, there's there's things that you can't escape in the data, interpret that how you will I do tend to agree with you that the best way out of all of this mess is to simply standardize it.
And like the standard doesn't change. It has to be very, very high because our lives are at stake and the defense of our country is at stake. And whatever happens as an outcome based on those standards happens, maybe maybe a woman will make it through Buddz. I don't know. One woman just made it through USCIRF training for the course. That's right. Yeah. Yeah, that's right. And I think that's a I'm I'm fine with that as long as there's been no downward pressure on the standards.
And if it whether it's one or whether it's 100, that's OK. Now, it is worth pointing out, I mean, you know, people are like, well look, there's, there's a lot of women out there who could kick most guys butts. That's true. But that's also not the question. You know, the question is, can they kick most Navy SEALs butts in in every single category? Right. Like there's a lot of female power lifters that would absolutely destroy me, but they certainly can't outrun me and outswim me, you know?
And the question is, is like, you know, is it a matter of all three? And you get to a point where there's a lot of overlap between men and women. But but the question is what's happening at the at the tail ends of the spectrum? And is there really overlap there? And but again, it's like to standardize it, to standardize it. You're good. All right, let's move on.
But I think I think that helps the audience understand, like, you know, from from an operator's perspective, like what we're really dealing with and frankly, what the solutions are.
I want to go back to some WOAK ism.
There's so much to talk about, so much to talk about. I tweeted about this recently, the Navy reading list, the Navy official reading list had on it a book in the found the different sections in the reading list. And one of them is, you know, foundational like foundational to your character.
And on this list with with Choco's book with with a book about stoicism is Ibram Kennedy's how to be an anti-racist.
What on earth do we do about that? Is the Army doing anything like that? Actually, I just had I just had someone send me a screenshot from a West Point cadets computer where they were doing a course on how to the title across was dealing with white rage. So, so critical race theory.
And things along those lines have infused our academies, have infused our force. And we're now seeing the defense secretary come out and say his top priority is dealing with extremism in the ranks of what have you gotten?
Have you dove into that? So we'll get to the reading list. Well, actually, was Shaquill quick reading list.
This is a bunch of crap like, you know, the pure and simple How to be an Anti-racist is an extremely divisive book.
Right. It basically tells you that the only way you're an anti-racist is if you acknowledge your racism, you're a racist and then acknowledge your privileges and see everything through a lens of race where race there, where it's where it's so dangerous is that he takes the the next step and says and you also must admit that America is inherently misogynistic, colonialist and racist. And there's no stopping it.
There's no doubt that that's right. There's no way there's no solution here. And there's no you know, there's no redeeming things that the United States has done, like lifting billions out of poverty. But so you must admit all of those things. And therefore, to be you have a duty to be anti-American. This is what we have our new sailors reading as they come into the United States Navy as a foundational foundational book so that the country that they are going to risk their life to defend is fundamentally flawed and therefore you have a duty to be anti-American.
It's a great way to put it. And, you know, I called on the CNO to immediately address it. You know, it's do they not know what they're seeing? Is it happening under their noses? Look, it's I don't know the explanation, but I want one. I'm on the Armed Services Committee and we're going to get one.
Let's ask when they come asking for their budget. Yeah, that's going to be a question.
Right. What is your priorities?
Because you guys have a budget full of, you know, bombs and missiles and pay raises and personnel. And it seems all good, but it doesn't seem like it's a priority.
Public what has me so what has me so concerned, aside from the system, how they view the country that we're asking them to defend.
But, you know, Dan, you and I know when you're on the black helicopter in the middle of the night going after al-Qaida on the other side of the world, nobody's asking you. You're not looking at your teammates and say, are you black, white, brown, Jewish? Nobody cares. You certainly don't care about political party, right? It's about mission. It's about country. It's about our values. It's about getting the job done. And what he talks about in that book is antithetical to the mission based, mission focused, merit based military that that you and I came up in is what and what made us the best military in the world.
Goal of that book is to make it about race. Right. That's the literally the stated goal of the book. It's like you got to stop looking at people as the content of their character. You have to stop being colorblind. We need you to see color at all times. I can't imagine a more toxic thing to do to an institution that relies on social cohesion and and seeing each other as a fellow Marine or a fellow sailor or fellow American.
I mean, the old adage the enemy's bullets could care less about black, white or brown. All they care about is whether you're American or not. I mean, the enemy doesn't care, like the Soviet Union came back to life and populated the Navy reading list because this is exactly what they talk about, about Demoralize.
I mean, did you ever seen that interview with this old KGB agents? The interviews from nineteen eighty four is amazing interview. Everybody should watch. I can't remember the guy's name is, but if you like Google KGB agent nineteen eighty four, you'll find it. And he talks about the steps the Soviets took to demoralize Americans. And it's basic and that's what's kind of started the 60s revolution.
It's what the North Koreans did and they're brainwashing camps where they had multiple American soldiers, you know, get on on international television and sign statements denouncing the United States. But they use societal wedges, the biggest one being race. Right.
And we have them. We talk about North Vietnam now, what? North Korea and North Vietnam. Both. Yeah, both. Both. Yeah, yeah, yeah. That's exactly right. It's like it's easy to screw with us and we can't feed into it, you know, I think that's the point. OK, what we say about the West Point, we'll finish that. Well, it's it's it's a parent of a West Point cadet that sent me a screenshot from one of their classes that said how to deal with your white rage.
That's the class, you know, the critical race theory class that they're taking. But I think at a bigger level, we now have a you know, when a new secretary comes in and you know this, darn it, just as a new commander of a unit, the first couple of things you do really sets the tone in terms of your priorities. Yeah, so. Terry Austin has ordered an operational stand down across the entire force, that's what we want to deal with extremism in the ranks.
And I want to be very clear. We we always want to root out extremists in our ranks, but it's all kinds of extremists, he said in his memo, specifically white supremacy. We should root out all extremists, whether you're anarchists, whether you're a West Point cadet. So it didn't mention intifada, whether you're anarchists, communists, you name it. But he didn't say that. He said extremists, particularly white supremacists, like the question I have for him.
If he was sitting right here right now, what evidence do you have that we have a white supremacy problem in the military if you're going to accuse hundreds of thousands of people of being a part of this, because that's what you're doing by saying you're going to root it out whether you like it or not, or that it claim that it's of such scale that it's infiltrated the military.
I mean, it has been there. It is there. And it should always be dealt with. And there's regulations defining what an extremist is and all commanders should up should uphold those regulations. But is it of such scale within our military that it has to be one of the first things that you do as a new defense secretary? So I'm looking at it in terms of priorities. Right now. We have the Chinese navy that's larger than ours. Now they're building ships every other month at a rate five to one outbuilding us.
They launched more into space last year than the rest of the world combined. They're literally biologically making super soldiers. Their president is telling their military to prepare for war and invading Taiwan. And this is the first thing and the most important thing that he's focused on. So it just really caused me to raise an eyebrow in terms of his priorities.
And what do you think they're doing to quote unquote root it out? I mean, are they are they just looking through social media posts? Like, I'm not exactly sure what they're doing at this point? Doesn't seem like a whole lot. I think that's good news. You and I know what an operational stand down in terms of a training problem. If you have a fratricide, if you have a maintenance problem, say, in your aircraft, in an operational stand down, so you're stop and training and everything you're doing is military to then root out extremism.
Yeah, I mean, that's a great question.
What is it like in the past? It looks like this is not a PowerPoint. Yeah, no, it really is in the past. So but but, you know, this just drives people apart, right? Like, if that's if that's it's just it's going to lower morale considerably. I bet. If we I bet if we took the temperature on morale in the military a few months ago versus now, I think I know exactly it would be happening.
Right, because everybody feels like they're being the other.
And I think that a lot of people are really concerned about is the line that the administration is drawing, the very fine line between. Between white supremacist, extremist, conservative and Trump supporter is very, very thin. Oh, yeah, well, they've been doing very time. Right. And but to now have the leader of the United States military kind of seeming to maybe slip down that road, it's not clear to me yet, is concerning.
It's extremely concerning. I'm going to read I'm going to kind of summarize. I've gotten so many letters along these lines. And so I'm going to kind of summarize all of them. But they basically people emailing me about the officer training that they deal with.
So so, you know, in the Navy pilot is the Army to at about the may not for you to do anything for over five level. You do like you know of, you know, mid-level intermediate training. You know, just learning how to be that next level of leader is how I would describe what is usually a couple of weeks of training. You kind of retreat out there.
It's a mixed people, pilots spears might be like SEALs do a specific one, actually, a couple of weeks and drinking tea and worries such better profits and the army that it's we don't need it, but we do it anyway.
But, you know, what I never did was unconscious bias training. One of the reasons I don't think we ever did it was because unconscious bias is voodoo pseudoscience. Crap doesn't actually mean anything.
But this is what we're doing apparently in our military now, unconscious bias training. I, I got some of it at Harvard. I remember that. Right. And they put you through this, sort of debunked it. It is totally debunked. There's there's no evidence that this shows there's a link, a causality between unconscious bias and actual behavior, actual choices that are made. But any way we do it anyway, because everybody's everybody's bad and everybody needs to be told that they're racist.
Right. And then they need to read how to be an anti racist in order to redeem yourself.
This has become almost like a religious doctrine. And we're putting it in our military and they're going through this and they're asked like certain questions, like, OK, you see somebody on a train like, what are you thinking about them? Like, what would you would you do this? What would you do here?
This is evidence that you're a racist. This is evidence that you are biased. And this is this has the potential to affect your decisions even if you don't know it. And so you're guilty no matter what. Yeah. Well, and and here's you play that forward into a combat scenario. Right. And and you're in a situation where where you've got to run through the hail machine gun fire to go get your buddy and to drag him back. And you know darn well you may die before you ever get there or you see someone take that action or not take that action in that instant.
I mean, I've seen someone literally curl up into a ball and start crying. It was in the face of fire.
It was it was not me.
It was an awful, awful night in all seriousness. But here's in all seriousness, here's where that so so we're now going to start planning that seed and our soldiers, sailors, marines of maybe maybe they didn't go get that guy because he was black or he was brown.
Yeah, that's toxic. Right? I mean, that is truly, truly toxic because everybody reacts in different ways. And those scenes in those scenarios and some far better than others. But what we can't have seeping in at a very basic level. I mean, this is in basic training. This is an intermediate officer training. This is at the academies. Is that race or religion has something to do with that? And it is that is that it will eat away like termites at the foundation of our military, like we have to get back to basic liberal principles of.
Logic and due process wherein, you know, if if you indeed are going to accuse somebody of this, there has to be some amount of evidence in linear reasoning to get you there.
You can't just say, well, it's unconscious. You don't know you're doing this wrong, but you are. Well, then how can I ever get better? You just you literally can't. And in fact, it's it's like it's like the movie Inception, like the idea is in there. So you're probably thinking about it much more than you otherwise would have. And and if you're a minority, well, now you're constantly thinking about it. Now you're attributing every single action to this this really toxic commanding officer or sergeant.
You're your squad mates to your left and your right to create suspicion. And everything that we are trying to do and should be trying to do in the military is overcome all of that and build that unit cohesion and say leave all of that aside. It's all about merit. It's all about performance in training and then on the battlefield. And this is this is heading in the exact opposite direction. It really is.
And it's all B.S. I mean, you know, they'll throw unconscious bias studies out of court because this is this is science has been completely debunked. And if you're listening to this, instructors who are putting this on, better have some answers. We're coming for you. We're coming. Mike's on the Armed Services Committee, Pentagon. All right. Let's I've got so many topics of politicization in the military. We're going to I think we're almost done, though.
Maybe let's go ahead and get to the. Oh, transgender stuff. OK, let's talk about this quickly, because I did a whole podcast on it, but I'm just going to read some non deployable medical conditions, right. If you have this, you can't deploy asthma, seizure disorders, diabetes, heat stroke. Mental problems can't forget the dental and mental problems. You don't got dental. Oh, my God. Everybody's nightmare. Something you can you can be super cool.
If you've got if you've got bad teeth, you're not going anywhere. Musculoskeletal conditions, all sorts of sleep apnea. You know, I mean, flat feet are an issue. Non deployable psychiatric conditions, psychotic, bipolar disorders. Suicide attempts, substance abuses, any kind of psychotic hospitalizations. Of course, there's a lot of different things under psychotic and bipolar disorder. Like there's obviously a lot of categories there. Look, there's there's going to be and to be clear, before before you deploy for combat, we go through all of these evaluations.
Right? You go through a whole series of them, the dentists, the psychological through physical evaluations. We have all of these body mass index. I mean, there's a lot of things if you have any of these, you're not going to deploy. And eventually if you can't deploy, you get thrown out of the military.
And so let's go over real quick. What Trump's transgender ban actually was. It wasn't like a complete ban. A lot of people think it was OK. It's a history of diagnosis of gender dysphoria in less stable for thirty six months, no gender change, stay deployable and attainable or you're grandfathered in between Obama opening a new policy. So the disqualification was mainly surrounding an actual medical transition and those without history, your diagnosis may continue to serve and their biological sex.
So so let's break that down. In layman's terms, it basically says that might look, if you're part of my team and the next day you come to me and you're like, I am not like I am. I am. You're going to do that. I'm Mandy, OK? And I say, Michelle, can we go with Michelle? You're Mandy and you're Mandy. Just kind of I like Mandy, all right. And I say, Mandy, just get back to work.
And that's it. That's the policy.
Get back to work, my Mandy. And you're like, whoa, whoa, I'm going to go get a medical transition. So you can't do that, OK? You have to you have to serve as Mike, but there's no don't ask, don't tell policy.
Like, you can't be fired for it. You get to be you. But but but just like you can't get tattoos on your face, OK, like if you're Mike still and you're like, hey, Dan, I want to get tattoos on my face, you can't get tattoos on your face.
And I want a ponytail down in my butt. You can't get a ponytail, don't wear seals can because we're cooler than you. But but you can't.
All right. Because, like, there's there's a lot of aesthetic standards in the military. There's behavioral standards. And I think this is the right way to talk about the transgender issue.
I think that we should love every human for who they are. Right. If when I see a trans person, I'm like, you're just a person to me. You're a person. I see you as a person. I do not want to dehumanize anybody. But if you behave differently now, I judge you according to that behavior. And if you're definitely behaving vastly different than you were yesterday, OK, you can't expect me to just simply tolerate that.
Right, because now you're infringing you know, now you're interacting with me in a different way.
I hope that makes sense for people. And I think it's the right way to think about these difficult policy discussions when when we're discussing this. But in the context of the military, I mean, the medical stuff and the medical side of it, that's why I started off reading that list of of reasons you can't be in the military in reasons you can't deploy is because medical complications in the transgender with somebody who's transitioned are extreme.
And I don't say that lightly. I mean extreme.
We again, we did a podcast on that where we had a woman who transitioned to a man.
And the complications that, you know, that that she talked about are just sorry he talked about because I'm not trying to make gender anybody. Right.
He's a he now. And they're extreme, like they're extreme. And he's like, there's no way that somebody in my condition could possibly serve in the military. You just can't you know, for me, the answer on this one is, is relatively it's a complicated issue in terms of what they have to go through. But the answer to me continues to be in the kiss principle. Keep it simple. It's about mission and it's about standards, and if you can hit those standards and you can accomplish the mission, then fine.
I don't care what race, religion. Socioeconomic background, gender in between gender that you are, I think there's a real question of whether the taxpayer needs to foot the bill for you to get there. That's the question. That's one.
But number two, because you're putting you're footing a bill to make you unemployable, you know, and it's out there. You just read a whole list of medical conditions that the military is determined. If you have those conditions, you can't do the job that the military needs you to do. And that's it. What we can't have and this slippery slope that we're going down is starting to change the standards or or adjust the mission so that we can check a box.
Right. And that's the bottom line. The standards, the standards, the mission is the mission. It can't be discriminatory. You know, the same the other side of that is the military can't modify those because they don't want certain people. And I mean, they did that in the past, whether it was on race. They've done it in the past, at times on on gender. We need to decide what the mission is, what the standard is, and that's it.
And whoever fits, that fits it.
Yeah, we need a military to fight and win wars.
And but I but I will say that is true. But I would also say we should not deliberately allow somebody to. To undergo a medical procedure that makes them that ensures that they cannot meet. Absolutely, yeah. If they don't meet the standard after that procedure, that's it.
Right. OK, let's let's. At the Tiger Carlson thing. So he got in hot water because I mean, quote, one of the things he said and it kind of the whole spiel is sort of along these lines. So so we've got new hairstyles and maternity flight suits. Pregnant women are going to fight our wars. It's a mockery of the U.S. military. Yeah.
So I'm trying to see his broader point.
I think he was just trying to I think was obviously he started allocative. He started out the peace with the threat that is the Chinese military. Right. And how they're creating super soldiers, how they're you know, I mean, they really are kicking our butts across the board when it comes to the new drone, you know, the new stealth fighters, the rolling out the ships that they're building, it's we need a wake up call to the Cold War that we're in as a military.
He's right about while. He's absolutely right about that, I disagree with him. The role of women have been, I think, fantastic in the military. But we can't have a military that's more about social engineering than it is about winning wars. I think that's what he was trying to get at, I think is very an artful the way he got there. I think he would.
And I don't agree with what he said, to be clear, because, again, as we said earlier, cyber warriors, pilots, logisticians, intel officers and ones that meet the standards, special operators, infantry and infantry men and women, fine. But we need the best of the best to deal with this threat. Yeah, yeah. I'm definitely of multiple minds about this entire controversy. We're going to impact the military's response to it. But like, he would have been better off sort of being like, look, the Chinese are over here prioritizing this.
And then he should have listed all the things that we've literally talked about on this podcast. Like, you know, we're concerned about when a trans when somebody can transition. We're concerned about a reading list being woak enough. You know, we're concerned about all this nonsense. And the Chinese are talking about supersonic missiles and and satellites that can, you know, zap us like, you know, invasion from Mars or whatever.
The movie I get that they just signed an accord with Russia to have a manned station on the moon and they're on track to do it.
Why is the why is that comedy show space for us so foretelling and prescient?
I mean, OK, so, yeah, he's definitely in artful and I don't think he realizes that, like, you know, like Congress funded different uniforms for pregnant women.
And I think that's wholly understandable because they have to buy different clothes.
I actually I actually co-sponsored an initiative on maternity uniforms because the military was wasting so much money. I mean, these women were literally buying a new uniform as their pregnancy progressed every month. And we said, hey, military, why don't you just loan them some for a month and take it back and loan it to another woman saving millions, millions of dollars.
But it's the wrong example to choose if you're going to choose why the military screwed up, like there's always going to be a bunch of things.
To be clear, there's all kinds of reasons where our military is falling behind. The Chinese women isn't one of them, and pregnant women isn't one of them. They're like, you know, again, that's not the issue.
But he I think he was in artfully getting at what we have this low comment. That's what I want to do, the social engineering and and that focus.
And I go back to where are our priorities? I want us focused on building more and better ships, launching more and better rockets, having the best soldiers. I don't care what race, religion background they come from that can beat the other guy or deter them. This is what the left never understands about a strong militaries, the peace through strength concept. Right? They think I if they think they can beat us, that is actually going to lead them and that's going to lead us closer to war.
Yeah. Now I think that's right.
OK, let's talk about the the military's response. Right.
This is where it all got interesting and there was a lot of outrage over it. And like so the so the claim is that, well, there's a politicization of the military because the military is not going after a conservative journalist. Now, there's there's there's again, there's kind of some truth to that.
And I would also say, like taking another step back, like Biden is the one who made this a big deal by having a press conference about the new uniform. He's done other press conferences that are very woak in nature regarding tripping over himself.
Like, look at me, I, I made two women and I think minority woman, like, in charge of this command.
Doesn't that that's really annoying, actually, because it takes away from that woman's accomplishment.
It's token treat her like everybody else. How about you stand up and say. This general is the best general in the military to lead this command. Oh, by the way, happens to be a minority woman, but I'd love to ask you the best general to make her evaluation, because it would make me feel like crap.
You know, it would make me feel like I didn't get it out of my merits. And I bet I bet she did. I bet she honestly did get it out of her merits on the merits.
And, you know, but that should be the story. Well, I know the two women that he was referring to. I know them by reputation. Their reputations are fantastic. They are fantastic leaders. They are great generals. And I think you're absolutely right. By having the first thing come out of your mouth that they were a minority or they're a woman is frankly insulting.
I think it's extremely insulting. OK, so I forgot. I wanted to make that point. OK, but then then the Pentagon started talking. Look, some of these responses strike me as as commanders kind of just defending their people, like in defending their institution.
And I'm like, you know, if somebody was talking crap about the SEAL teams and I was still active duty, yeah, I might hit back. So so some of it strikes me is that, however, on the Pentagon's website, it it leads with what does seem like a highly politicized response.
Let me read it real quick. So, you know, this is right on the Pentagon's website, it says, press secretary smites use the word smites smites host that dissed the Navy word, I think Smiley.
That's when they use a lot in the Navy, is it? He's an admiral, the press secretary.
So it must be a big time navy. It's pretty funny on the reading list. Like it's again, can they are they allowed to defend their institution? Yeah, but this is how it leads. The United States military is the greatest in the world. This is the greatest the world has ever seen because of its diversity. Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby said during a news briefing this morning. So that's where you got WOAK, brother. That's where you got work.
So, look, he's absolutely right that it is kind of it does seem true that Tucker degraded the role of women in the military. I do see that. And I think it's wrong. And we've already talked that we've hit that point when you have a very exceptional and important role in the military.
But this press secretary is absolutely wrong. It is not the greatest because of diversity. That is that is a completely false statement.
And if it is in it, if that is your position, that I want you to back that up very clearly with facts and explain how we got there, because I would actually point you to some Harvard sociologists that have really studied this and show that it's really the opposite.
It actually, you know, the more diverse the community is, the more problems they tend to have. They tend to they don't they don't like mix up and get to know each other. That's not what happens. They end up going into different clicks. It causes more issues. So that's on the that's on a sociological level.
But there's but there's no there's no even there's no way to reason your way through that or like why would diversity within a SEAL platoon make it better?
You know, standards make it better.
Everybody from all diverse backgrounds having to go through a certain selection course and kind of trial by fire to make it to a certain standard and then trained together. That makes you an excellent force. And we've proven that over and over and over again. So that's proven. But this guy saying diversity now, now, now we all know it's just buzzwords, right? This is just what it's kind of like the sort of, you know, religious mantra that is repeated over and over again.
We're stronger because of diversity.
And if you repeat it enough times, it becomes totally true. Well, I want to know why it's true. I mean, I really do. So I mean, so it's just to take a step back.
I mean, I think there's two fundamental sacred aspects to our military. One, civilian control of the military and our republic that makes us different than many countries in the rest of the world and to is an apolitical military.
So I think you're I agree with you. I think you're right. And kind of defending the role of women, as we've talked about, and the great contributions that they make in our service. But I think where he crossed the line is then going after a journalist or opinion leader or what have you on on a political point. If you want to take a defensive stance, fine. But that's not what that headline is. It leads with press secretary smites smites naveh word journalist.
Yeah, they could have handled it better. Like I defend your institution, I get that, but like don't get all silly about it.
So I think both sides, you know, if we had a grade had this whole controversy I'd say like that both sides kind of screwed up on this one a little bit. Yeah.
Yeah. OK, so the way I want to end this is more broadly, what do you think about flag officers in general just voicing their politics? You know, active duty, obviously off limits. Yeah, not in uniform, but non-active duty.
I mean, you know, retired a lot of retired admirals writing letters against Trump, retired generals and admirals supporting Trump. Same with Biden. But, you know, it doesn't elicit that kind of attention, just generally speaking.
But we have a long history of. Former military officers being fantastic, continuing that service and and continuing to lead the country and bringing all of the things that they learned in their military service, not just the experience overseas, but leadership, followership, teamwork, mission, focus, a perspective on how this, you know, maybe a country that always needs to approve but truly is an exceptional country. I mean, that's why you and I have talked a lot about how we need more veterans in our politics.
Yeah, I don't I'm not only fine with that, I encourage it in uniform. Absolutely off limits. Once you're out of uniform, roll up your sleeves and continue to serve. You can't just sit at the VFW and tell war stories or write books in your case.
And and and I have one to read a book if I knew you were going. But so not only fine with it, encourage it from Zachary Taylor to Grant to Eisenhower. We can go down, you know, we can go down the list.
I could argue it both ways. You know, I. Because it kind of depends on how they do it, I think it might be maybe the better answer, like it sort of depends. Some some do it well and honorably. In others, you know, especially when it's like a list of generals writing a political letter, because now you're not really speaking as a civilian.
You are speaking with the rank of general or admiral because because you all grouped together danger there.
And the danger there is now with so few people serving as compared to previous generations, a lot of people, frankly, don't understand the difference to your point. And I think you have to be very clear when you're retired and when you're out of service and when you're in.
Yeah, there's you know, a lot of people think like the military politics and the politics of former officers are kind of interesting. The military leans conservative, generally speaking. I think that's because the conservative disposition is risk taking. I've done I've done I've written a lot about this. I've got some research to back. We just take physical risks.
It actually kind of explains the lockdown controversy. Why why the red states prefer to be open and free and take that risk and why the blue states not. We're just more comfortable with physical risk taking.
Yeah, I think there's some institutional things, but I also think there was a lot to do with where we were in history and anti Trump ism and just reacting. And there's a whole slew of explanations. Sure.
And it's an interesting conversation, a psychological one.
But but, you know, people who are already conservative tend to say, OK, I'll join the military, I'll join law enforcement, I'll be a lumberjack, I'll do physically risky things. This is borne out in the data. So that might be why they end up dispositional be more conservative. But there's a lot of very liberal people in the military, too. And I think one of the attractions of the military is that it's the largest bureaucracy in the world.
And there's this sense of like I can just decide to do things, I can centralize this control and I can do things that I love that. So people ask because I'll get that question from constituents sometimes, like how they're from the military, how are they so liberal?
And I'm like, well, think about it because because the bureaucracy is so extreme.
And so it really lends itself to a more liberal set of policy making. Let's get it out, get it out. Got it, her directions should be anybody.
So that's my theory anyway, you know, and I think that, again, because it's a mix, right? Like you see liberal, I, I don't see a lot of flag officers in Congress, which is there's a lot more people like mid career types like us.
What do you think that is? Because I think that they've since invested so much. You've drug your family around for so long in the Army's case to so many horrible places in the middle of nowhere where you can run around and tanks and and, you know, in the countryside where the town is typically built up around the base. So you sacrifice so much at that point. Whereas I think for for us, we got out of the military for a lot of our frustrations where we see like minded individuals with confirmation bias promoting like minded individuals, really what it takes the sacrifice and the all volunteer military to get to that flag.
Officer rank where? And really the corporate leaders are ladders that you have to climb, the boxes that you have to check. And I think, frankly, folks like you get frustrated with that. When I lost my eyes and ears and I go, well, there's that, too.
You said the word corporate. And that reminded me. I did want to bring this up, maybe to wrap this up, which is one of the problems. And with with the way I see too many flag officers acting is they act too much like CEOs.
And actually, that's one of the reasons I think they don't even get into politics, is because they've they become very corporate. And we use that word different than a manager and a leader. Right? Yeah.
And sort of highly risk averse, which is very corporate. Right. The goal this is why this is why corporations given to WOAK cancel culture so fast, because they're like, what do I have to do just to have nothing else happen?
Now, I think that's bad long term thinking because, yeah, it's going to be painful for like a few days and oh my God, all the tweets. But then then it's over. Right. And everybody's buying GooYa. OK, like it work. Standing out to cancel culture actually works and I see too many flag officers. The reason we're doing this podcast is because I think there's way to. OK, fine, let's put it on the reading list.
OK, fine. Just do the you do the confirmation or the unconscious bias training. Just, just do it. It's fine. Like if we do it then we'll look, they'll, they'll think we're one of them and we can.
It's like, it's like the Walking Dead where you like drape blood and guts all over you and the zombies around you think that you're one of them. That's like the same with world culture. So no, no. But you raise a great point in the terms of risk aversion. And I actually have a whole chapter that in my book you talk about it. No, it's all good, but I have a chapter about it in combat where you know, where that one year deployment on an otherwise very promising career.
You're just on the cusp of promotion. The driving forces don't screw it up, don't have a base overrun, don't have your soldiers losing sensitive items, don't have, you know, any kind of sexual harassment charges or anything along those lines that the default reaction to controversy becomes in action or becomes a lack of action and risk aversion. And it is I think it is because in an all volunteer. Well, think about it. The draft force, we are pulled out of your life, pulled out of your career, your business, and sent over there.
You're incentivized to take every risk necessary to accomplish the mission when the war so you could get back home. But now on the all volunteer force or the career force it becomes, don't screw up the promising career that I've sacrificed so much for my family and become in risk aversion has seeped through our entire force. And I think that's that's a great point to draw that line, connect the dots between that and the WOAK ism. It's just keep giving because otherwise I don't want to get blown up.
I don't want to get canceled and I don't want my promotion ruined. Yeah, it's the safe route. And frankly, one of the reasons I wanted this podcast, the reason I've been speaking out this week is because I don't want it to be safe anymore. Right. No more safe spaces for four wokingham in the military. It's not safe on the Armed Services Committee, at least not on behalf good. It shouldn't be. And, you know, it's time we step up that that's why we're doing this.
And it's it's it's going to get fought for. Like we have to fight for our institutions that protect our country. They're the most it's one of the most important we have. Try and fight and win wars, that needs to be the focus and be a Navy SEAL, not a Green Beret. OK, that's it. All right, thanks, everybody. Thanks, Mike. That was awesome. Appreciate it. A go Army Navy. All right.
We'll give you that last word.