Military reform, now and then: the eternal dialog

I feel that West point is a great institution although it is openly part of the Political Elite of this country. [...} Not all the military truely believes in this country or even cares about the civilian population in it. - Posting to military message board, 2004

[West Pointers] too commonly construe themselves into the elite, as made of better clay than the common soldier - General William T. Sherman in Ben Butler's Butler's Book

They seem unable to realize that this is a Republic, in which the people are above generals, instead of generals above the people. - Secretary of War Edwin Stanton in T. Harry Williams' Lincoln and the Radicals.

Look closely at the names of the officers, rotating. See how many of them are Acadamy Officers. In the army they belong to the WPPA (West Poin Protective Assosiation) Or in lamans terms "Good ol Boys taking care of Good ol Boys. - Posting to military message board, 2004

To say or imply that WP officers look out for each other to the exclusion of brother soldiers is incorrect--no more than people anywhere pay attention to others when they have known the other people for many years. - Posting to military message board, 2004

We enjoyed one set-off to the clannishness of West Point and its opposition to every high officer that was not a graduate, and to the intrigues of each to pull the other down and set up himself. This was that the Confederate Army enjoyed identically the same sort of setback from West Point, and I am inclined to think, in a degree quite as great, if not greater. - Ben Butler, Butler's Book

... the problem facing our soldier today is too many college trained "leaders", not enough "real world" leaders. - Posting to military message board, 2004

[Y]ou must let loose the citizen soldiery of this country upon the rebellion. - Sen. Lyman Trumbull in T. Harry Williams' Lincoln and the Radicals

Sad we have all the best and brightest being led by what now appears to be the dimmest and most inept - Retired warrant officer posting
to message board, 2004

[I]n God's name put no more West Point officers upon us at this time - Sen. Zachariah Chandler in T. Harry Williams' Lincoln and the Radicals