Thursday, November 13, 2014

Thank you for your service, sucker

Who gets laid off? (Capt. Elder Saintjuste, photo by Travis Dove/NYT)
This is so classic: as the Army downsizes from the Bush wars, soldiers are getting laid off, and the bureaucracy is saving pennies by getting rid of officers who haven't served long enough to receive their full pensions so that a captain who worked her- or himself up through the ranks may have to retire, and that's have to retire, because they're not being given any choices, on a sergeant's pension. But wait wait, there's more:
an internal Army briefing disclosed by a military website in September showed the majority of captains being forced out had no blemishes on their records. The briefing, a copy of which was obtained by The New York Times, also showed that officers who had joined the Army as enlisted soldiers, then endured the demanding process required to rise into the officer corps, were three times as likely as captains who graduated from West Point to be forced to retire.
Some of the personal stories in the Times account are really sad and they're all infuriating. There really is no end to the number of clubs that, as Drifty might say, we're not in.

And who doesn't? (Wedding, Fort Myers Officers' Club).
Amanda Marcotte discusses related matters (and Springsteen!) here. I guess this is my belated Veterans' Day post.

Update 12/19/2014: These downsized veteran captains will get their full captain's benefits after all, according to a report in the Times. That's 120 officers; another 44 who are 24 or fewer months short of full retirement will not be forced to quit. Good thing, and thank you New York Times for helping it to happen.

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