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  1. #21  
    Senior Member txradioguy's Avatar
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    A senior defense official told a congressional panel Tuesday that the current military retirement system is “neither unaffordable nor spiraling out of control, as some would contend,” and cautioned against proposals to replace it with a private-sector-style plan.

    Jo Ann Rooney, the principal deputy undersecretary of defense for personnel and readiness, told a House Armed Services subcommittee Tuesday that private-sector models “may not necessarily be the proper approach for the military.”

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/politi...1GM_story.html
    In Memory Of My Friend 1st Sgt. Tim Millsap A Co, 70th Eng. Bn. 3rd Bde 1st AD...K.I.A. 25 April 2005

    Liberalism Is The Philosophy Of The Stupid

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    The libs/dems of today are the Quislings of former years. The cowards who would vote a fraud into office in exchange for handouts from the devil.
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  2. #22  
    Quote Originally Posted by TruckerMe View Post
    [I only spent 8 1/2 years active, so I never retired from the military. I served in Vietnam in Operation Game Warden, 1968. 14,000 men were killed that year.]

    The problem that I see with your complaints is that it puts you in the same bucket with everyone else in America. Pay rates are frozen everywhere. Everyone's retirement is in shambles, and many of them are simply gone; no money.
    Everyone knows and everyone agrees (at least those that count) that your missions are hard. Terribly difficult, even.

    But consider that the current system was designed when military personnel were paid significantly less than their civilian counterparts. Generals and Admirals never made as much as well paid executives; Sergeants, and Chief Petty Officers never made what a competent electrician could make. So they retired early, and took home half their salary, which was a pittance.

    My, how things have changed. My father, who retired in 1959 as a Lt Commander, died in 2009, after collecting half the pay of an active duty Lt Commander for a solid 50 years. We could debate all day about how much he was due and how it should be paid, and I'm sure everyone has an opinion. But the fact is, that no system - military or civilian - can survive that kind of economic backloading. To pay someone half their salary for 50 years after serving 20 is just not affordable if they have been paid adequately. The old system - the one they are now phasing out - assumed the old military pay scale.
    Well… as I’m sure you expected, I vehemently disagree.

    My argument does NOT, as you say, “put me in the same bucket” as everyone else. I make the clear distinction that our numbers make up a very small percentage of the entire U.S. population.

    Furthermore, painting this broad-brushed comparison of Admirals and Generals to the average Enlisted Retiree is hardly accurate. Additionally, not everyone retires at the rank of Lieutenant Commander; even if we all did, so what?

    The overall total number of living veterans (both prior service and currently still in service) is approximately 22 million. That’s roughly 7% of the total population. Of that 22 million, approximately 9,800,000 receive pensions and benefits. That’s [roughly] 3.14% of the U.S. (veteran) population that receive pensions and benefits.

    Now… I think we can all agree that the percentages are small. However, the “powers that be” don’t highlight this fact. They choose to highlight dollar figures that will (appear to) justify their logic in dissolving Veteran’s Benefits. For example, it’s no secret that the average total amount of federal government spending for veteran’s benefits programs is approximately $95.6 Billion. HOLY $H!!ZZA!!! That seems like a staggering amount!! But wait… it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to do simple math.

    Let’s work it out. Take 95.6 Billion and Divide it by 9.8 Million. That works itself out to be approximately $9,755.10 per veteran / year (averaged). Of course, that’s not really a fair assessment. Not ALL veterans are getting an equal amount. General and Admirals and Lt. Commanders (obviously) receive more than the average 20-year enlisted retiree.

    Of that 95.6 Billion, $44.7 billion went to compensation and pensions (taxable income), $43.4 billion for medical programs and the remainder to other programs, such as vocational rehabilitation and education. In other words, it’s not like this astronomical figure ($95.6 Billion) went directly into the pockets of veterans. A large percentage of this money is taxable… which means a portion of it went BACK to the government. Furthermore, the remaining money was used to pay doctors and medical professionals for their services to vets, and finally, what little is left is spent to pay teachers and vocational instructors. In summary… a HUGE percentage of this money is invested back into communities by paying for goods and services that veterans NEED. Veteran’s actually “pocket” a very small sum of this money. However, If you were to listen to the spin some proponents of the “benefit overhaul”, you’d think we were all out buying small private islands to retire on.

    Now…

    The approximate number of individual WELFARE CASELOADS in the United States is 4,963,771. Now… a “caseload” can entail anything from a single person to a household of people but…for the sake of discussion (and my limited math skills), let’s just “assume” we’re talking about 1 person per case. That equals out to about 1.59% of the population. Now… who in the class wants to guess what the annual expense for this group is? Any takers?

    FOUR HUNDRED and NINTEY FIVE BILLION, SIX HUNDRED THOUSAND Smackeroos! (That’s just too awesome to not spell out.) HOLY BEEJEEBUS!! That's nearly a HALF-TRILLION DOLLARS!!! Seriously though, that works itself out to around $99,843.45 per “caseload” per year. The only problem is…. It’s not really per year; it’s more than that. It’s climbing. Every year we spend more… and MORE.

    Tell you what…
    There are currently about 13 BILLION DOLLARS in earmarked funds JUST FOR “highway improvements” that can never be spent because some bonehead congressman/woman tried to earmark money for roads that don’t exist. Some “bean counter” caught the “mistake” and the funds are now just sitting there…locked in an escrow account, un-invested and wasted. Well… I got a road. It’s called the ULTIMATE EXPRESSWAY to Erik’s Totally Kick Ass Retirement Party and Private Island. I’ll even invite every Friend on my FaceBook Page and their friends too!! Heck… I’ll split it evenly with every member of my Battalion. That’s about $18 Million apiece. Not bad… and I’ll tell you what, Mr. “Military Pension Revamp Man”, you can keep mine. Just toss me one of these absolutely LUDICROUS demonstrations of totally wasted taxpayer money, and you’ll never hear from me again!!!
    "War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made so and kept so by the exertions of better men [and women] than himself." ~John Stuart Mill, 1806 - 1873
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  3. #23  
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    Quote Originally Posted by txradioguy View Post
    You know...nah never mind...
    You may not want to discuss it, but it is clearly open for discussion.

    Mind you that I don't actually have a hard and fast position on this at the moment, merely that there is a sauce for the goose factor to it, and you can't simply declare that only the military is goose and everyone else is gander. The military retirement system was designed at a time when active duty military compensation was quite different from the present. It's not surprising that when one thing changes other things will change as well.

    Besides, we are being told that unlike nonmilitary jobs (including police, fire, and convenience store clerk) , changes will not affect those currently enrolled. So the changes, if any, will be part of the decision to make a career of the military, as they always have been for some people.
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  4. #24  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Witmaster View Post
    ....................
    Welfare and highway expenses aren't relevant to military expenses, or the cost of the IRS for that matter except that spending cuts have to come from somewhere. What the politicians are saying is that everything is on the table, and what you are saying is that one thing should not be on the table, and should only be increased. What some others are saying is that if you simply entertain the question, or god forbid disagree, then you must hate the military. Bullshit. The military budget is and has always been in play, and that includes the cost of the personnel.

    Besides, this is probably some cloak and dagger thing anyway, with some force in Congress wanting to shut something down and getting resistance, so they fire a shot over the military retirement system, the same way they fire a shot over Social Security or Medicare to get some traction.

    Serving in the military is a noble and patriotic thing, fortunately the young men and women of America haven't traditionally made the decision to join based on their expected paycheck.
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  5. #25  
    Quote Originally Posted by Novaheart View Post
    Welfare and highway expenses aren't relevant to military expenses, or the cost of the IRS for that matter except that spending cuts have to come from somewhere. What the politicians are saying is that everything is on the table, and what you are saying is that one thing should not be on the table, and should only be increased. What some others are saying is that if you simply entertain the question, or god forbid disagree, then you must hate the military. Bullshit. The military budget is and has always been in play, and that includes the cost of the personnel.

    Besides, this is probably some cloak and dagger thing anyway, with some force in Congress wanting to shut something down and getting resistance, so they fire a shot over the military retirement system, the same way they fire a shot over Social Security or Medicare to get some traction.

    Serving in the military is a noble and patriotic thing, fortunately the young men and women of America haven't traditionally made the decision to join based on their expected paycheck.
    You've missed my point... almost entirely.

    This government squanders trillions of dollars of frivolous and ethically imballanced "projects". Welfare fraud, waste and abuse is just one ov the many areas we hemmorage our tax dollars.

    My (Highway fund) statement was another example of how billions of funds funneled into special interest projects that would have never been funded otherwise.

    I never ONCE made the claim that anyone who disagrees with me "hates the military" so you can kindly shove that thought back up your ass. ;)
    "War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made so and kept so by the exertions of better men [and women] than himself." ~John Stuart Mill, 1806 - 1873
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  6. #26  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Witmaster View Post
    You've missed my point... almost entirely.
    I saw your point, and consider it historically unsupported.

    Quote Originally Posted by Witmaster View Post
    This government squanders trillions of dollars of frivolous and ethically imballanced "projects". Welfare fraud, waste and abuse is just one ov the many areas we hemmorage our tax dollars.
    By "this government" I have to assume you mean the United States government. Can you point to a time when the government didn't spend great sums of money in ways that displeased those who didn't directly benefit? We worship the "robber barons", and if you study them you will find that with few exceptions their wealth was in some way created with US tax dollars. That's what the government does: it taxes everyone and makes millionaires out of some. This has not changed since the King of Egypt built the granary.
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  7. #27  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Witmaster View Post
    My (Highway fund) statement was another example of how billions of funds funneled into special interest projects that would have never been funded otherwise.

    The assumption being that military expenses do not fund millionaires and special interests, when in fact they do. Much wealth is made by being a vendor or contractor to the US government.


    They also fund lots of little people who own stores and rental properties next to obsolete bases which are kept open in a kind of collective welfare. Whenever someone tries to close one of those bases, pictures of Biafran babies and suburbanites scrounging for food are played in Congress.
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  8. #28  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Novaheart View Post
    Should all retirement plans be rated for risk?

    http://www.beforeyousignup.info/joining/army/54-danger
    If you want to put it that way, sure.

    When you need to fill ranks that your putting your life at risk for on a frequent basis, what incentive are you offering when your rewarding the exact same thing to people who sit at a desk in their home city easy peasy for their whole lives.

    The retirement plan was a HUGE reason I joined the military, and have STAYED in the military.

    Offering me a 401k that I could have gotten anywhere, I would have had no reason to stay beyond my first enlistment. And believe me, I was doing some serious thinking about getting out. Hell, I'm coming up on my second reenlistment right now, and I was again doing some serious thinking.

    Military is going to lose a lot of people hands down with such a plan.
    In most sports, cold-cocking an opposing player repeatedly in the face with a series of gigantic Slovakian uppercuts would get you a multi-game suspension without pay.

    In hockey, it means you have to sit in the penalty box for five minutes.
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  9. #29  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Witmaster View Post

    I never ONCE made the claim that anyone who disagrees with me "hates the military" so you can kindly shove that thought back up your ass. ;)
    That would be why I said, "Some other people .... ". The English language is an amazingly precise one, try learning it.
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  10. #30  
    Quote Originally Posted by Novaheart View Post
    The assumption being that military expenses do not fund millionaires and special interests, when in fact they do. Much wealth is made by being a vendor or contractor to the US government.


    They also fund lots of little people who own stores and rental properties next to obsolete bases which are kept open in a kind of collective welfare. Whenever someone tries to close one of those bases, pictures of Biafran babies and suburbanites scrounging for food are played in Congress.
    OK...

    Now YOU are talking about something completely different, and ironically, we'll probably agree on quite a bit. I've seen the astronomical level of spending and abuse in the military. I see the outrageous salaries we pay to contractors (although not all contractors are "millionaires" as you would imply), and yes, I've seen the arguments to keep military bases alive because of the financial impacts to neighboring towns and cities (although I don't recall pictures of babies scrounging for food in front of congress)

    However, I opened this thread to address MILITARY RETIREMENT BENEFITS. Go hijack someone else.
    "War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made so and kept so by the exertions of better men [and women] than himself." ~John Stuart Mill, 1806 - 1873
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