Are Republicans REALLY the War Mongers? The Numbers Say No

Discussion in 'History' started by BluePhantom, Nov 19, 2011.

  1. BluePhantom
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    BluePhantom Educator (of liberals)

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    Since Republicans are accused so often of our “war mongering” I decided to have a look and run some numbers to see just how “war mongering” we are compared to our bleeding heart liberal friends. I have to say I was quite astonished at the results on my research. I looked up every significant military action the United States has been involved in since Andrew Jackson (who founded the Democratic Party) and I have to say I think it’s quite the opposite. I was so surprised in fact that I ran the numbers twice. Then I figured it must be simply a modern thing so I ran the numbers limited to events happening in “the modern era” (which I defined as being after World War II). It actually got worse for the Democrats.

    Below are my main findings. I will post my methodology in a follow up post. Read 'em and weep, liberals.

    Since Andrew Jackson (March 4, 1829)

    Number of Days in Control of Executive Branch
    Democrats: 30,572
    Republicans: 33,563

    Total number of significant military actions that can be assigned to a given party
    Democrats: 16
    Republicans: 10

    Number of days in a significant military action that can be assigned to a given party
    Democrats: 18,557
    Republicans: 12,250

    Percentage of time USA is involved in a military action that can be assigned to a given party
    Democrats: 61%
    Republicans: 36%

    Average length of military action that can be assigned to a given party
    Democrats: 1,160 days
    Republicans: 1,225 days

    Estimated US military casualties of military actions that can be assigned to a given party
    Democrats: 524, 473
    Republicans: 38,103

    Estimated civilian casualties of military actions that can be assigned to a given party
    Democrats: 4,013,684
    Republicans: 926,894

    Estimated total casualties of military actions that can be assigned to a given party
    Democrats: 7,142,067
    Republicans: 1,082,884

    Estimated US military casualties per day of power that can be assigned to a given party
    Democrats: 17
    Republicans: 1

    Estimated civilian casualties per day of power that can be assigned to a given party
    Democrats: 131
    Republicans: 28

    Estimated total casualties per day of power that can be assigned to a given party
    Democrats: 234
    Republicans: 32


    In the Modern Era (since the end of World War II)

    Number of days in control of Executive branch
    Democrats: 10,135
    Republicans: 14,541

    Total number of significant military actions that can be assigned to a given party
    Democrats: 7
    Republicans: 6

    Number of days in a significant military action that can be assigned to a given party
    Democrats: 6,173
    Republicans: 3,773

    Percentage of time USA is involved in a military action that can be assigned to a given party
    Democrats: 61%
    Republicans: 26%

    Average length of Military Action that can be assigned to a given party
    Democrats: 882 days
    Republicans: 629 days

    Estimated US military casualties of military actions that can be assigned to a given party
    Democrats: 501,143
    Republicans: 37,097

    Estimated civilian casualties of military actions that can be assigned to a given party
    Democrats: 4,003,019
    Republicans: 926,894

    Estimated total casualties of military actions that can be assigned to a given party
    Democrats: 7,064,802
    Republicans: 1,080,681

    Estimated US military casualties per day of power that can be assigned to a given party
    Democrats: 49
    Republicans: 3

    Estimated civilian casualties per day of power that can be assigned to a given party
    Democrats: 395
    Republicans: 64

    Estimated total casualties per day of power that can be assigned to a given party
    Democrats: 697
    Republicans: 74
     
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    Last edited: Nov 19, 2011
  2. BluePhantom
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    BluePhantom Educator (of liberals)

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    Methodology
    For those who are interested in how I reached all these numbers

    This was not an easy thing to do. First I created a list of “significant military actions” the United States has been involved in since the Jackson administration. Anything before that is irrelevant since neither the Democrats nor the Republicans existed. Once I had assembled my list I researched the causes for each operation. It struck me that simply because a given president was in power at the time it didn’t mean the conflict was necessarily his fault. No one, for example, can blame World War II on Franklin D. Roosevelt simply because he happened to be the president at the time. We were attacked at Pearl Harbor and Congress voted 470 – 1 in favor of war. How can either party be blamed for the Philippine-American War when we were attacked in territory that was ceded to us by Spain following the Spanish-American War? How can either party be blamed for the Gulf War or the Afghanistan War when they both had overwhelming bipartisan support in Congress?

    So I separated the actions into three categories: 1) Democratic initiated, 2) Republican initiated, 3) No one’s fault. Anything in the third category I ignored. The following is my broken down list:

    Democratic Initiated Military Actions
    First Sumatran Expedition
    Black Hawk War
    Second Seminole War
    Mexican-American War
    Third Seminole War
    Red Cloud’s War
    Spanish American War
    Occupation of Haiti
    Siberian Expedition
    Korean War
    Occupation of Dominican Republic
    Vietnam War
    Operation Uphold Democracy
    United States Operations in Bosnian War
    Operation Noble Anvil
    2011 Libya Bombing Campaign

    Republican Initiated Military Actions
    Modoc War
    Great Sioux War
    Nez Perce War
    Occupation of Nicaragua
    1958 Lebanon Crisis
    Persian Gulf Escorts of 1987-1988
    Grenada Invasion
    1986 Bombing of Libya
    Invasion of Panama
    Iraq War

    Military Actions that cannot be blamed on either party or both had equal blame
    Dakota War
    United States Civil War (though I was VERY close to putting it in the Democrats column)
    Philippine-American War
    Boxer Rebellion
    World War I
    North Russia Intervention
    World War II
    Gulf War
    Somalia
    Afghanistan War

    From there it struck me that some of these engagements were pretty short bombing campaigns and there’s a big difference between an engagement that lasted a couple months and one that lasted multiple years, so I decided to break down the number of days each action lasted. This took a lot of research and sometimes the dates are not very clear. The Bosnian War for example had been going on for quite a while before we got into it and we had military advisors in Vietnam as far back as the Truman administration even though we didn’t get rolling until the Kennedy administration and didn’t engage in our first recognized battle until the Johnson administration. Sometimes setting the dates was a real bitch so I used the date that a) war was officially declared, b) hostilities began involving US military personnel, or c) the earliest recorded battle involving US military personnel whichever was earliest. To determine the end it was very similar: a) the last recorded battle involving US military personnel, b)the last recorded action of US hostilities, or c) the date of surrender whichever came last.

    I still had another problem though. How, for example, can I assign “days of war” to Nixon for Vietnam, or to Obama for the Iraq War when it wasn’t their party that started it? So I decided to assign “days of war” to whichever party initiated the action. This created some weird situations such as the Occupation of Nicaragua which saw US involvement for an assigned 7,665 days (roughly 21 years) even though the Republican Taft (who initiated it) was only involved for about a year and Wilson (D) dealt with it for his entire administration. At the end of the day I decided whoever started it owned it regardless of how long it lasted. From there it was just doing the math and adding everything up.

    The next thing that occurred to me was that a long war doesn’t necessarily mean it was a bloody war. That Occupation of Nicaragua for example may have lasted about 21 years but it only resulted in 116 documented US military casualties. The Korean War by comparison lasted about three years but was a particularly bloody affair. The problem is figuring out how many people were killed or wounded in a given conflict is a major pain in the ass because it’s usually just an estimate and for some wars (such as the Seminole Wars) there’s absolutely no way of even giving much of an estimate because the Seminoles carried off their dead. So what I did was to look at each conflict and gather as much information as I could find regarding US military casualties, enemy casualties, and civilian casualties and average them all out. Sometimes the estimates were given as a range (i.e. 30,000 – 60,000) and in that case I split the difference (in the example of 30,000 – 60,000 I would assign 45,000). I included dead, wounded, and missing as the number for "casualties". From there again it was just doing the math and adding it all up.

    Finally, I wanted to reflect everything against the amount of time each party was in power. It was easy enough to just look up the dates each president was in office and calculate the total number of days each party held the office. The rest was just a lot of basic arithmetic.
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2011
  3. Ropey
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    Ropey To Life! Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

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    [ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SrjMkeXGfGM]My god! Are you STILL talking?! - YouTube[/ame]
     
  4. syrenn
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    syrenn BANNED

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    Just a rules note BP...... so you know how things work here and not get your self into hot water with the mods.

    you may not quote an entire piece of someone else work....you may quote only parts of them.

    And.... you must link to the original.


    :)



     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2011
  5. rdean
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    rdean rddean

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    As long as they follow leaders who are war mongers, then yes.
     
  6. zzzz
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    zzzz Just a regular American

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    A little more simpler explanation is that Republicans are seen as hawks while the Democrats are percieved as weak. This simplistic perception leads foreign leaders to shy away from antagonizing Republican led administrations and to disregard Democratic administrations and the result is the Democrats have to go war.
     
  7. dblack
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    dblack Gold Member

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    Wow!

    Stepping back from the partisan tit-for-tat, and looking at that list - man, we sure do loves us some wars.

    Go team!
     
  8. BluePhantom
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    BluePhantom Educator (of liberals)

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    I don't understand what you mean. I ran all those numbers myself and the analysis was my own. Took me several days.
     
  9. BluePhantom
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    BluePhantom Educator (of liberals)

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    Aint that the truth...and if you look all the way back to Washington the period between Washington and Jackson is just as bad. I think the longest we have gone without being down someone's throat is about 20 years between the Hayes and McKinley administrations just on a quick glance.

    We're a nation of scrappers, that's for sure.
     
  10. Ropey
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    Ropey To Life! Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

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    So, this is your own opinion BP. When you post history, you don't cite information dumps in order to support your opinion and turn it factual?

    OK
     

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