What Military Retirement Reform Means

The Military Officers Association of America is warning that the proposal to convert the military to a civilian-style retirement system under which full retired pay wouldn’t be paid until age 57-60 could have a much bigger impact than you think.

A recent MOAA article compares the long-term value of the current military retirement system to the proposed to reforms. The following is a summary of their findings:

Under the current system a newly retiring E-7 at age 40 with 20 years of service with retired pay of about $24K a year would see his or her retirement checks grow to over $80K a year by age 85.

Under the proposed “civilianized” 401(k) plan, a retiree would not begin drawing on his or her retirement until age 57-60. Assuming a 7% rate of return, MOAA is estimating the same retiree would draw $13,600 per year until age 85.

According to MOAA, this would mean a loss of $1.6M in cash benefits over the retired E-7’s lifetime.

Learn more about MOAA’s position on the proposed Military Retirement Reform.

About the Author

Terry Howell
Before becoming the Managing Editor for Military.com, Terry served 20 years in the U.S. Coast Guard as an Aviation Electrician’s Mate and aircrewman. In his final role in the Coast Guard, Terry served as a Career Development Advisor, where he provided career, finance, education, and benefits counseling to servicemembers and their families. Since retiring from the Coast Guard, Terry has authored the book, The Military Advantage, managed the content for TurboTap, the DoD's online transition program and VAforVets, the VA's transition assistance website. Terry earned both his Bachelor's and MBA at Corban University using Military Tuition Assistance and his GI Bill benefits to help cover the cost.

134 Comments on "What Military Retirement Reform Means"

  1. Next they’ll be dipping into the pensions of those who are already retired, just wait and see.

  2. This is called BOHICA and then wait 17 years for a bigger BOHICA.

  3. How long are we going to put up with this.

  4. Well, I forsee compulsory service on the horizon. Nobody will want to enlist, or stay past maybe one hitch under this genius idea. Sure….it's gonna save boatloads of cash. But…I don't see "lifers" anymore.

  5. Politicians don't care about the military. they see the military as a means to do their bidding. if they really were concerned would they threaten not to pay us. would they cut our benefits. would they deny us care for PTSD? you bet they would.
    where is our commander in chief sticking up for his troops?
    oh he is the one that wants to deny this to us.

    Sorry.

  6. Panzer Leader | July 29, 2011 at 7:48 pm |

    And of course they will put these retirement funds in a "locked box". After SS, the would be the next fund they would raid and leave I.O.U.s. What a crock of BS. Kind of like, "Let's Make A Deal", what door would you pick. Creative financial planning brought to you by the same people who managed your SS.

  7. Panzer Leader | July 29, 2011 at 7:55 pm |

    Hey Larry, you said the magic word. Everyone goes, not just one socio economic class. Social engineering at the expense of military quality. Less $$$, social justice, followed by anti war marches, followed by a withdrawl from the Middle East. Damn, what a plan! Stack arms and turn off the lights.

  8. Fill the sky with red berets as we all exit the door

  9. Civilianized plan hmmmmmm??? I don't see civilians enduring long deployments. I don't see civilians sharing their bedrooms with 50 other people and waiting in line for a shower. I don't see civilians having to maintain a physical fitness standard. I don't see civilians instantly whisked off to a combat zone. Matter of fact I don't see civilians doing to much to start with. A Fresh batch of Kool-aid whipped up by the Obamanites. Oh how I pray for a revolution.

    RMCS (SW) USN, Ret.

  10. What I find most disturbing is the fact that no current serving senior Officers have spoken out on the behalf of the troops!

  11. I don't see anything different. What I mean- the government aways screws the enlisted men. How ?. because it does'nt affect their pay, and standing. Also
    the draw down of troops from areas of conflict is going to require discharging thousands of excess personnel.
    We're just ponds to use and discard. I have a few metals from my all expense paid trips to Vietnam; 3. I can't eat them, or take them to the bank for cash.
    All of you will be the same way, from the Civi War to todays war. In my life time there has only been 5 years in my 70 when we've not been to a conflict somwhere. So when you're standing in that line and get to the clerk who tells you that line is yours over there. NEXT!

  12. How will this affect medical retirement? If a troop gets his left leg blown off in service and gets a medical discharge lets lay 5 years in, is he stuck with the disgustingly small pay check of this new retirement plan?

  13. I am just sick at this idea. So they are going to take away medical until I am in my 60s because they say I am leaching off the taxpayers since I can get a second job after military retirement and they are cutting my pension that I wont get until I am in my 60s and everything I have been planning for, including how many children I have had knowing I will have the funds to take care of them is changed because they have no honor to hold up their end of the deal. Where is their integrity? If they are going to make changes atleast grandfather the people that have been selflessly serving since they have been in and give them what was promised. I hear so many people saying they are going to get out if this changes. I won't get out, I dont know what the state of the world will be and every little bit helps. I have a family to take care of. Im not giving up my last 13 years of service but I really do hope that riots break out if this happens. Big, flaming, angry riots. I hear they are going to take away tuition assistance…something about the Selres GI Bill as well.
    If you want a real laugh read this link. Promises Promises. http://www.whitehouse.gov/issues/veterans

  14. i agree with our military no use to stay in no benefits when you get real sick or out of service but when another country calls they say we will get our troops over asap i love america just not the politicians vote all out come 2012 take over capital white house by force in the constition it is leagal to be done same as senate congress go out to their homes have another wood stock any one who wants to contact me your more than welcome

  15. This is crap, I wont reenlist if this goes into effect…No reason for me to be in navy past my first enlistment. I already got my 80k for college and can earn more elsewhere and not in military anyways.

  16. GI SOLDIER | July 31, 2011 at 5:58 am |

    WHY IN THE HELL WOULD THE GOVT CHANGE OUR RETIREMENT PLAN……WE HAVE LOST COUNTLESS HOURS AND DAYS OF OUR LIVES AWAY FROM OUR FAMILYS TO FIGHT FOR FREEDOM…OHH BY THE WAY WE WERE ALSO PROMISED A GURANTEED RETIREMENT AT 20 YEARS…..LIARS!!!!!!!!LIARS!!!!!!!!! WHAT A CROCK OF SHIT IN MY BOOK…..IM GETTING THE HELL OUT OF THIS SO CALLED MILITARY..OR SHOULD I CALL A BUISNESS…..WATCH AND SEE HOW MANY TROOPS GET OUT..GOOD LEADERS OUT!!!!!!!! WE DESERVE A DAMN BETTER RETIREMENT PLAN DUE TO THE FACT WE LIVE A CRAZY LIFE…HOW MANY BIRTHDAYS HAVE YOU MISS????HOW MANY NIGHTS HAVE YOU SLEPT IN A COMBAT ZONE????

  17. GI SOLDIER | July 31, 2011 at 5:58 am |

    HOW MANY FREAKN NASTY MRE'S HAVE YOU ATE????HOW MANY BOMBS HAVE BLOWN UP AROUND YOU??? HOW MANY BATTLE BUDDIES HAVE YOU SALUTED AWAY BECAUSE THEY DIED FOR THE FIGHT OF FREEDOM?? HOW MANY OF YALL HAVE BEEN PAID LESS THEN A $1,000 DOLLARS A MONTH TO FIGHT 2 WARS!!!!!HOW MANY 24 HOUR DUTYS DID YOU HAVE TO PULL WHILE YOUR SON OR DAUGHTER OR WIFE HAS HAD A BIRTHDAY….WITH ALL THIS BEING SAID DONT FORGET WE WEAR 70ILBS OF GEAR WHILE ITS A 115 PLUS DEGREES IN A WAR ZONE…SO MAD SO SAD SO HAPPY I ONLY HAVE 2 YEARS LEFT WASTED OF MY TIME IN THE BUISNESS CALLED US MILITARY……10 YEARS WASTED BECUZ SOMEBODY DOESNT LIKE THE FACT THE MILITARY USED TO BE A CAREER PATH NOW ITS A DONALD TRUMP BUISNESS…HOPE ALL OF YOU ENJOY UR FREEDOM..BECUZ THIS GUY IS DONE!!!!!!!!!!1OHH BY THE WAY IM STILL HERE IN AFGHAN WAITING TO GO HOME!!!!!!!!!!!4TH TOUR HERE AND IM SICK TO MY STOMACH!!!!!!

  18. The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have broke the economy and we all are facing hardships now. The politicians and generals agreed for the surge and increase in Soldiers now that we used them and don't need them anymore lets find a reason to kick them out of the Army! You screw those Soldiers out of his or her retirement along with everything else the government is doing to its people, I can see the US citizens rioting on a national level one day!!!!!

  19. I have served almost 20 years of loyal service. Four Combat deployments, Iraq & Afghanistan with injuries on two. One requiring surgery. I have two sons, one born during deployment, wasn't their and one in garrison. Had a fellow Soldier killed during my last deployment. It's amazing how you can watch sports center and see athletes get paid millions of dollars, us oil companies make billions of dollars, besides other big business. Now that the US Soldier has served loyally and now its time for him or her to retire lets come up with a great way to #%@& them over. As Americans we are now at a time in history were the US Government and US military is going down the toilet, bad leadership and management on both sides. I can't count how many times I had the new next generation of leaders in the military tell me and others they don't give a $%@#.

  20. Deane Gilmour | July 31, 2011 at 1:42 pm |

    Cut everyone but federal employees the hot bed of support for Unions and DEMONacrats who have refused to propose a budget for the last 6 years. Maybe it is time the Legislature and anyone else working for them gets a pay cut of 50% for anyone making over 125k annual with no raises unless a budget is met, and a minimum of 10 years at Leavenworth if prosecuted for graft. The military has been the whipping boy for legislators since WWI and except for WWII the benefits were never adhered to until now and those now are very much in jepardy of rescinsion of the promises that politicians only truely keep for their Union buddies and backers in the Military/Industrial complex made up of war profiteers backing DEMONacrats.

  21. GI Soldier: you stood up & took the oath ,nobody put a gun to your head and made you sign the paper, God Bless you Son & stop the damn whining!

  22. newly retired | July 31, 2011 at 6:38 pm |

    I note it doesn’t even give the benefits of the Federal Employees Retirement System, either the general one (1%/year of employment) or the Law Enforcement/Congress plan (you earn 1.7%/year of employment). Yet we are expected to deploy on a moments notice, are on duty 24×7. thanks to the GO on the Board who so wonderfully (/sarcasm) defended us.

  23. I wouldn't join for that system of retirement. I have already been screwed with the "free healthcare for life" lie. They do give you "Space A" dental care. However, you have to wait for a military member that doesn't show up for an appointment to get something done for yourself. I once waited all morning for a cleaning. Never again. I see some very aged veterans that go to the dental clinic prepared to wait all day. They bring things to do with them. The volunteer military is going to suffer. Once it becomes just a dangerous job without benefits……few will join. The benefits will come back, or, they will have to institute the draft…..and the quality of recruits will drop like flies.

  24. And I suppose you have met all the lifers and leaders? There are dead apples in every barrel. However, after 24 years in the AF and 10 as Navy civil service, I have met men and women I would follow into battle anyday. We would not be the most powerful military on earth if your statements were true. I

  25. There will always be bad leaders and good leaders in any job you do. I started my career in the military because I loved just doing the job. Now, I have a family that I have to put first. If this plan is goes in to action then I owe it to my family to leave the military and find a career that will take care of them. Despite the fact that the military is the only job I have ever really loved.

  26. Career Military | July 31, 2011 at 9:40 pm |

    If the military is going to sacrifice their retirement for defending everyones freedom, then I think all government employees including the Washington Bureaucrats will no longer get their pensions for merely serving a single term, but join the same 401K plan mandated by Congress and the White House and start drawing it at 57-60 years old. We've earned our pensions for the sacrifices paid everyday we serve this great nation proudly…stop the stupidity!

  27. policywonk | July 31, 2011 at 11:09 pm |

    Well, considering what a terriffic job the deregulated banking system did to the nation and its finances during the Bush Years, and the lack of republican interest in preventing it from happening again, the smart people will fight this change with everything they have.

    Privitization has caused the US citizens to get shafted financially in every case with the exception of the phone companies. What it has done, is made the doners to the party that forced it down the nations throat very wealthy, while the taxpayers got the shaft.

  28. This sounds like someone isn't really thinking. Now, how short will the military be. We wont have to worry about be the world cleaner upper anymore, cause there won't be a US armed forced. This is just crazy, because as someone earlier said, Civilians do not endure what the Servicemember do, and should not have to be linked to them. Just wondering how many of those so call civilians will be signing up to make up the military now. And guys, stop blaming President Obama for this, no one has heard him say this is what he wants. And with all the Republicans now holding majority seats in the White House, where are they when you need them? mmmm I guess holding on to the NO HIGHER TAX for the Rich.

  29. The retirement issue is but a part of the more serious issue no one is discussing. Frankly our economic and fiscal status is so diminshed that we will likely be unable to fight a major conflict with the reduced treasury and in a short time reduced equipment, parts, staffing capability. The current budget deal in truth adds another $10 trillion at current spending rates in debt.
    Secondly, we are currently in effect funding a large part of the Chinese military with the $350 billion ++ per/ yr iinterest payment on the $1.1 trillion of our debt they own.

  30. The military is a uniquely separate component of American society that is authorized by the Constitution and common sense. It is not a civilian workforce and carries a much bigger burden in the DOD than its civilian counterparts and it seems we're more intent on sustaining a bloated bureaucracy and "supporting" activities than the actual warfighter. These "supporting" elements are definitely intent on slitting our throats to support their careers and paychecks. Now I’m gonna slam the DOD civilian side as I just finished a year in Afghanistan where the average contractor was being paid double or triple what we are paid (and there were lots!) only to return to my current job which is 75% civilian. I keep being denigrated by these GS/contractor folks who according to a federal ranking scale technically outrank me (E7/16 years active)…..however in my dealings with them which I have done everyday for the last 2 years all I see are what would be considered equivalent to an E-4 mentality with them both responsibility and performance-wise. They don’t move unless they want to, deploy for long periods of time unless there is big money in it, are free to quit or look for employment elsewhere anytime, are able to go home EVERY NIGHT to their family, can focus solely on one job or task while having little professional requirements/standards other than their job description, have high tolerance for incompetence and aren’t required to DIE as part of their deal. All this while being slowly sidled up more and more to the military in all the “nice” spots so they can be jealous of a 20-year retirement pension which is subject to individual service stipulations and possible recall to duty. Not Fair??? The service takes a toll on its members that it seems some people just aren’t understanding so I say to all civilians who see fit to examine the military from their cubicle: GET YOUR A*& TO THE FRONT, DO IT FOR 20 YEARS AND THEN TELL ME YOUR OPINION OR PROPOSED PLAN

  31. Both sides care more about saving the face of their party and putting themselves in the forefront for the upcoming election year than they do what's best for the people. Neither one gives two s__t's about the military or their families because it doesn't directly affect them. Getting reelected DOES directly affect them, and that's their #1. Democrats don't want to cut spending because it'll make them look "less Democrat" and Republicans don't want to raise taxes because it'll make them look "less Republican." Too bad a little bit of both would benefit the American people as a whole, military families included. It's a giant p_ssing contest and I'm sick of it. Whatever happened to a government that worked for its people instead of for itself?

  32. I supported my son joing the Marine Corp and now I am beginning to regrett that decision. Our country is trouble! Our career politicians are destroying this country on greed and power. There decisions are not based on whats best for this country and especially not whats in the best interest of our men and women serving this country. If that was the case, they would stop sending billions of dollars a year to other countries. I will do my best to convince my son not to re-enlist.

  33. Sorry for my spelling…..Im just really pissed off right now and forgot to check my spelling.

  34. A fien quote from POTUS

    “For their service and sacrifice, warm words of thanks from a grateful nation are more than warranted, but they aren’t nearly enough. We also owe our veterans the care they were promised and the benefits that they have earned. We have a sacred trust with those who wear the uniform of the United States of America. It’s a commitment that begins at enlistment, and it must never end. But we know that for too long, we’ve fallen short of meeting that commitment. Too many wounded warriors go without the care that they need. Too many veterans don’t receive the support that they’ve earned. Too many who once wore our nation’s uniform now sleep in our nation’s streets.”

    -President Obama, March 19, 2009

  35. If the proposed reform becomes fact, I predict a "brain drain" from the services by those who leave the service because of the breach of contract and faith. The loss of experienced personnel will greatly affect the forces.

    The military world is nothing like civilian business and it's retirement should not be based upon civilian systems. All this talk reminds me of the "hollow force" of the Carter Administration.

    So much for the appreciation of Congress and the President for the military members.

  36. Well, I spent 22 years in the United States Navy. I retired at E-8 (was in a tight rating so even though I was pulling down almost flawless performance evaluations, I got passed over four times, with not much probability of getting E-9 for another couple of years). During my career in the 70's and 80's, we coined a phrase "erosion of benefits" to fit what we saw as a decline in the programs that were available to help Military members up to the end of the Viet Nam war. During Viet Nam years, we were totally viewed as "baby killers" and "jack booted thugs" since all anyone ever saw was the media's take on the war. That was when the real decline began. Now that we have civilians making decisions about the military, and ones who have never set foot on a foreign shore, nor slept in a room with 200 other men in 120 degree, 90 per cent humidity berthing areas (that was just the CPO berthing on Enterprise!), things are really starting to decline. WE the PEOPLE are the ONLY ones who can reverse this outrageous trend. Write and call your elected officials and tell them to get their hands off the Military. If you don't they won't.

  37. I retired from the Guard…I don't get military medical nor my retirement pension until I'm 60…..sounds like they will treat the active duty just like the Guard. PS…we deployed also!

  38. I think it may result in a mass exodus from the service. It used to be that any troop hitting the ten year mark was easy to talk into staying. hell, they were at the half way mark. Now, I wouldnt encourage anyone to stay in. I bet people would do the 8 year hitch, and then walk away fro good.

  39. Please write your government officials today and make your voices be heard! We military earned our retirement pay and medical care with our service and sacrifice and that of our families- these are NOT entitlements to be given or taken away on the whims of the President or Congress (many who never served a day in the military).
    God bless our military men and women and their families.

  40. Have any of these far forward-seeing "representatives" remembered that there is NO draft?…that military service in any branch is strictly "ALL-VOLUNTEER"?
    I'd like to be around to see what kind of remedy the Hot-Shot "Tea-Baggers come up with then…
    What a great day that would be when the Vets and G.I.s get to propose their own Constitutional Amendment (…and wouldn't be a big surprise to see all the Tea-Baggers and GOP-Anal-Retentives switch sides, or even try to claim the idea was theirs all along).

  41. Who said that? That is the most insulting statement I've ever heard…

  42. Retired and tired | August 1, 2011 at 6:17 pm |

    Ah……Timing is everything I say…..It isn't that I don't feel like the Pentagon screwed anyone who enlisted after what?……1986? Or the ones who signed on after 1 Sep, 1980…..I unknowingly happened to enlist on 13 Aug, 1980……17 days short of that cutofff which didn't exist at that time……I think everyone should start collecting their pension the day after their last day of service…Don't hate us, the timing was just right….Semper Fi!

  43. The great Idea,( change the military retirement system), sounds great. While you lazy bastards are at home all warm, with family, home for the Holidays, eatting good food, lets not take care of the active duty and retired or disablied military, sounds good to me. So if you are going to go to a civilan (like) system you have two choices, pay now or later. I say pay now, you sorry ass leaders, my Job in the navy was to run a boiler, manage up to 26 men, ensure health saftey and welfare of all below me, make 6 med cruises, and countless other underway times, stand duty almost every day of my 20 years, missed Holidays, missed my five children growing up, not to mention mine and the wifes relationship, be qaulified a professional firefighter just like every other salior, danger pay, seperation pay, 2 other non rate nec's, watch standing, work days and probably a few more that I forgot.

  44. So cancel my health insurance, and my retired pay, pay me like a civilan and the bill should come out two about, now this number is low just to be on the safe side of 20 years service comes to about 2.1 million dollars, and we will call it even O.K. Stop hitting the middle class and the Military every time your back is agianst the wall maybe the underbellies of society could take the hit like food stamps, welfare, section 8, free medical all for signing up and so on. amazing how we can play your game the out look might not look so good try to do your job, FINALLY. Plus with all your new great Ideas you think anybody will want to join, what a job.

  45. Rich Alicea | August 1, 2011 at 7:24 pm |

    you fit the word disgruntal…if they should pass this legislation the all-volunteer army will cease to exist. In additon, it will be a leaderless Army as no leader in the right frame of mind would stay under those conditions knowing that they can benefit more in the Corporate world. I'm won't be surprised if this chatter is already affecting retention and enlistment.

  46. If you think about it, today’s politicians are the pot-smoking, acid dropping hippies of the Sixties that dodged the draft.

    Also pretty bad when two of our Commanders In Chief never had any military service.

    Then they had boneheads like J Peter Grace telling the Govt that the military retirement system was too generous.

    Lest they realize that 50 percent of base pay equates to MAYBE 25 percent of compensation.

    It is more advantageous for someone to remain on welfare vs working a minimum wage job.

    If they want to trim the fat, cut benefits to those that don’t deserve them (illegal aliens and some on welfare that are physically capable of working).

    Tax the companies that send their labor overseas.

    Make the top 1% income pay more tax by eliminating loopholes.

    Quit giving grants to study the mating habits of a fruit fly.

  47. The REpublicans have noticed that your Tricare is entirely TOO GENEROUS! Senator Coburn proposes major reductions to your medical coverage.

    REpublicans want more money to be spent on airplanes and contractors. Much better use of tax monies..

  48. Richard Alicea | August 1, 2011 at 7:36 pm |

    What saddens me is that the Army leadership has taken a camel approach to this whole mess….they stuck their face in the sand and won't come up for air!!!! Pathetic leaders who only know how to say "YES" to everything sent from above…sad!!! Where is PATTON these days!!!

  49. I have a REALLY GOOD imagination…I can just hear John Wayne say "Well pilgrim…lets give the rustlers 4 more years…and maybe they'll bring our cows back!" Yeah and Hallie Berry is going to call me for a date any day now!

  50. Retired as USAF E-8 in 1968.Retired pay was $289/mo, now up to a grand $1700/mo. Maybe not much, but it is what they agreed to pay –50% of pay after 20 years. Just looked at the 2011 pay tables — do you guys really have such a bad deal? If I was now a 20 year E-8 living off base at Travis AFB, my gross pay and housing would be about $77K a year. Not bad.
    And don't forget – it's all voluntary service.

  51. WhyOhWhy?? | August 1, 2011 at 8:08 pm |

    This is just another way to shaft the military. First, we have to welcome homosexuals with open arms, celebrate their lifestyle, pay for their HIV and now they take away our retirement system. Time to head for the door. Nothing to stay for…

  52. I think some of you are right. Change the retirement and people will stay 4 to 6 years and get out. You will never have a quality leadership base doing this. Well this only shows are country commit to the military. Not at all.

  53. don retired E-7 | August 1, 2011 at 8:41 pm |

    80k @ age 85. not if we don't get cost of liveing.

  54. SCPO (SW/AW) | August 1, 2011 at 9:03 pm |

    I must say I am seriously concerned now about my future. I thought when I retired from the military I would be okay. Now my civilian job is reduced to part time with lower pay, my state wants to increase taxes and let school districts tax income, TRICARE keeps being brought up for increases, now my retired pay could possibly be reduced in November if the new board (how many is this now) fails to be responsible the new DOD cut trigger goes forward. I think it will as when did any board ever get voted on and pass, democrats love the idea of cuts to DOD not caring that the retired get the first look for cuts. I have tried hard to maintain my responsibilities and it would be ashamed if I lose my home because of more political crap. I often write to congress and I do not think they even read it as when I say I am retired, they keep responding about the active side only. They always fail to mention the issue I am addressing. Is there anyone I can write to in congress who actually cares about us?

  55. What those complaining about us complaining about a retirement plan that was PROMISED to us fail to realize is that it WAS PROMISED TO US! If there are lazy lifers in the military, it’s their leaderships fault. There are thousands that do thus job because they are proud of what they do. We hear/read all the time about retirement benefits being taken away but we stay and continue to do our job. I have seen so many changes in my almost 26 years and I’ll tell you and anybody else, that when I first joined thus persons military, it was just a job, now it’s a way of life, no one twisted my arm to get me to go to Afghanistan, in fact I volunteered so that a new father and soon to be father could be home with their children. You want to save money, end the war. Or keep it going, just bring our Americans home. Also it doesn’t matter why people join the military, what matters is that they do a great job when they do join.

  56. You can either sit back and bitch and moan on the web or you can actually do something. Write your idiot Congressmen and Senators and let them know what you think. Write frequently and often. Here is a link to find the address of your representative: https://writerep.house.gov/writerep/welcome.shtml

    Emails are a dime a dozen, actual letters carry a bit more horsepower but don't suprised when you get some generic BS boiler plate response. It does not matter if you have a Republican or a Demorcrat as your representative, they'll both sell you down the river in a heartbeat. Personally I see this originating from the far right rather than the executive branch. The right has always assumed they own the military vote. It's time someone needs to shake them up. Personnaly I'd have done my first hitch and never looked back if the 20 year retirement did not exist. I am still amazed I stuck it out. 20 years as a grunt is just plain cruel and unusual punishment in my book.

    Write you representative and tell them what you think or this or something equally stupid will become the law of the land,

  57. SheranWheeler | August 1, 2011 at 9:59 pm |

    Completely Ridiculous! I've seen Your Comments, where are the NCOA or SGT's Association when You Need Them? I CAME IN a Whole and Healthy Person, ILeft under TDRL, just a few short of Regular Retirement… Because of What Has Happened to Me In My Enlistment! I CAN'T BREATHE! Even WITH My Retirement Pay (Awarded in Oct, after almost 2 yrs) I HAVE TO WORK to make ends meet! Base Is Not Hiring, so I'm in the civilian sector going up against 26 yr old Healthy PPL! I WOULD DIE WITHOUT MY PAY UNTIL 60, I'M 47 NOW… HOW COULD I MAKE IT? Dedicated Over 20yrs of My Life, for a Country that Only Wants to Screw Me for My Efforts! Lets ALL Band Together Like the Tea Party and Say NO!!!!! Thanks!

  58. SheranWheeler | August 1, 2011 at 10:01 pm |

    PS… Why is the Contract I Signed Under only 1-Sided (in the interest of the Politicians!) I GAVE MY ALL…. Where is Theirs? Just a Thought!

  59. You enlist and are promise a Great military Life,You serve half of your career,you are Guarantee a retirement,You have complete a 20yr.of service NOW the jokers at congress,are Threating our commitiment !Let those who serve vote so they get their retirement cut the same and wait til their @70 yr's and its a balance debt !

  60. "There were 167 veterans in the 107th Congress, 153 in the 108th Congress, 126 in the 110th Congress, and 121 in the current 111th Congress."

    I feel like these declining numbers are a big contributing factor.

  61. This plan won't affect anybody currently in the military. It will be set for the future.

    The plan to totally change military retirement away from the traditional pension is a good idea. Why? Because it is intellectually HONEST and admits finally that the Federal Govt has no interest in bankrolling military retirees for life. It's too expensive and there's no political juice in doing it, so why do it? The Political Ruling class can spend that money in an area that gets them more political benefit.

    Doing away with tradition military retirement is the honest thing to finally do, because the Federal Govt Ruling Class has been cutting the military retirement benefits for many years now, and the abuse will never stop. So, I say it's more honest to just chuck the system that they hate anyway. I'd rather they chuck it than to hear their endless lies about how much they value military retirees as they forever cut the miltiary retiree pension and benefits..

  62. Faithful Soldier | August 2, 2011 at 7:39 am |

    Wow it is amazing what people will say and do now a days. Congress and the President seem to forget that there are other ways to cut spending…. How about the Oil Companies (Sorry they are in both the Democrats, Republicans, and Mr. President's Pockets), Rich Americans (Sorry BFFs of all of the parties), and paycuts of Politicians and their retirement for one term (Sorry that would take money out of their pockets). Oh, NOW I UNDERSTAND. ONLY SERVED FOUR DEPLOYMENTS AND COUNTING while Congress and Mr. President went on vacations and flew on Air Force One…. The Military must stand up in 2012 and proclaim "NO MORE!"

  63. Can anyone explain to me why I have to spend 20 years to get half and the Jokers in congress spend one term to retain full? Or am I confused?? The military …. The back bone of a Free nation or is it the law makers (you know the guys that earn as much as 10 military people do combined.)
    Why is it that they go and CUT the worker bee when they could start with the top heavy non working politicians who are going to CUT the REAL WORKERS lifes.

  64. 99 percent of those in Congress have never served in the military. They had better things to do ie: Cheney……The draft will be back.

  65. Hay sounds like a good plan to me . Lets get it passed asap, but first lets make the new pay plan include all who are paid by the FED government.Wow what a saving plan and congress could quickly pass it with no bickering.

  66. I am a military wife. My husband and I have been together since he was a "slick sleeve". We are now in 19 and a half years and he is a SMsgt. I am shocked and disgusted that we are having to deal with the possibility of losing the retirement that we stayed in so long to get. The sacrifices that we have made are too many to count. We signed up for it so I always understood that it was our choice to make. However, we stayed in because we felt the retirement would be worth it for us to endure countless Christmas's apart, birthdays, anniversarys, summers. I have seen my parents about 19 times in 19 years. We did all of this to serve our country and to know that we had a benefit waiting for us when we got out. At 10 years we had a huge decision to make. My husband was offered a great job and we discussed getting out. We knew that once we went past 10 years that meant we would retire. We stayed in knowing we would have a pretty decent retirement deal. Now this!!!!! Really??? I feel so betrayed. I understand changes have to be made but I believe ALL service men and women who have served over 10 years should be grandfathered. I hope and pray that what they decided will be fair to everyone.

  67. SSGT Lopez | August 2, 2011 at 9:31 am |

    All the military are pawns, the government plays with us the way they want to! This is sad, we put our lives on the line and our families and we get shafted, this is B.S.

  68. Retired MSG | August 2, 2011 at 9:48 am |

    When the sons and daughters of the self-serving lawyer/politicians in DC are all in the military fighting and dying – then I'll believe their bull@#$% lies in Washington. Until that happens – I don't believe anything they say – never trust a self-serving lawyer hippocrite. Wake up Washington – cut your military's benefits and just who do you think you'll try and force to do your bidding overseas?? Have you forgotten your history?? Oh, that's right – you create your own don't you? Don't re-elect a single son-of-a-!@#$% for any position in the House or Senate. As for the Military's own leadership…….stand up and represent your soldiers you spineless sons-of-!@#$#%'s!!!!!

  69. Msgt(Ret)AF | August 2, 2011 at 9:58 am |

    Most of you on this site have good ideas, based on personal experience. Yes, we need change but it needs to be complete change. I for one am going to do what I can in the coming election. My rule of thumb is if any candidate has been in any elected position for eight years (basically two terms), they get cut. I will examine the strengths and weakness of the remainder and vote for the one who best supports what I believe in. I will not vote for an incumbant because if they are in there now and haven’t fixed the problems, they are part of it. Sure, there is the rare exception but for the most part, get rid of all of them-regardless of party.

    Boener, Reed and Pelosi are at the top of my list to get rid of. It trickles down from there. Those that believe the military budget is the thing causing the biggest problems need to pull their heads out. We need to stop giving free bees out to those who won’t work-two years on welfare, then off, no more. Illegal aliens-no nothing, no food stamps, welfare, no subsidies, no employment…they will go home or at least elswhere. Prosecute those in government who have broken the laws we are required to live by. Revise congressional pay to no more than military pay and benefits, no more free nothing. They too will go away. Those there now got in to politics for one reason-to become rich. Don’t believe it, look at Obama, Boehner, McConnell, Reid and Pelosi. They had money when they went in but they are a **** of a lot richer now. Fire them all and start over.

  70. amandahourt | August 2, 2011 at 10:10 am |

    Ok, as long as the rest of the government also waits till they are that age to get retirement. HA, we will see that that will not happen.

  71. Michael Madigan | August 2, 2011 at 10:22 am |

    Why is it they always attack the US Military let take from thosew ho serve and make huge scarfices over thier careers not to mention the long constant deployments and lost personal family times and memories. You notice that the congress doesnt mention any pay cuts of lowing any of thier benifits or pay. Why is that. The so called 401K is a joke what if the maket drops or crashes then they have nothing, and artcile mentioned if they received at least a 7% return annual. It all what if's. Stop and think America do you the best miltary force in th world to go to pot, think about your secuirty, safety.

  72. If you really take a look at what is being proposed, it is actually beneficial for current and future service members. I have 14 years of active duty service, and if the new system were to be approved tomorrow, and we could start collecting retirement immediately upon dropping our papers, the system would be great, and I would undoubtedly support it. If, however, you could not start collecting retirement until 60 or beyond, the system would be a a disaster, and would not benefit those of us who have been in for any length of time under the old retirement system. Bottom line, it all depends on when the retiree with less than 20 could start collecting their benefits.

  73. The way I see it, we work overtime for free (every day), we leave our family's for 12+ months at a time and put our lives on the line. Even cops get over time and have a great retirement. If the government wants to give us a civilian type retirement, then start paying us like civilians and give us the overtime you owe us.

  74. Better yet, Mandatory pay cuts and benefits for all congress, senators, and the president by at least 63%. And when they retire, only give them 50% of their base pay instead of FULL pay and benefits. Think of the Billions that would save. They have themselves so well taken care of, and we who have fought for FREEDOM have little to live on after retirement, and are forced to find work in a economy that the government is largely responsible for destroying! They overtax everyone, over regulate business, and they still don’t have enough? They tax the hell out of retirement pay, mine is 700 dollars a month! I for one am sick of it and we need to fight back! Write your congressmen, and senators, let them know we are not putting up with this.

  75. pretty sad that veitnam vets cannot get school benifits they turned me down said I waited to long and now I lost all my schooling help go figure right VA is no good to us (veitnam vets )

  76. This country has the LOWEST tax rate in nearly 60 years right now. People go on and on about the rich getting more tax breaks and hiring more people and saving the economy and so on, but the rich didn't hire us, the military did. Taxes pay our salaries and retirement. With a low Tax rate, these changes WILL HAVE TO HAPPEN. If you don't like it, stop electing people who say they have your back but then refuse to allow more revenue to be generated by letting previous tax cuts expire etc. So many people in the military are so up the republican's asses, the very group touting "small govt." well, news flash, military is govt. and we can't escape far reaching cuts in a reduction in govt. size.

    It's still a voluntary service and it's not that people lied to you, they just told you what they wanted to be and hoped would be true. But things change and until we fix some things they will continue to change. Many of these benefits and entitlements have been created in the last 50 years. Bottom line though is we can't pay people well enough, continue to collect these benefits and be the best military in the world if we continue to tax people like we did in the 1940/50's.

  77. another attention whore? either that or just a bored gov't civilian that got tired of solitaire on his desktop…

  78. Old Sub Sailor | August 2, 2011 at 1:02 pm |

    What I like about this plan is, the Senators and Congressman have their pay
    cut by 25%, and the President by 50%. They all have to trim their staff by 75%,
    and the White House loses all but on servant, and that one doesn't know how
    to cook. Also the President's woman must fly coach, and stand inline to be
    searched by TSA. What about this scenario?

  79. ConstitutionAlly | August 2, 2011 at 1:17 pm |

    Our civilian masters forget that 20 years of active military service is 24/7/365 on the job, which equates to over SIXTY civilian work-years. Retirement pay in all honesty is deferred compensation, not an extra benefit. Our service members are on the job not just 8 hours a day, but can be called up without notice at ANY time, at any hour, holidays and weekends. Service members risk being shot at, disabled, maimed, and killed because that's part of the job description. This so-called "reform" is just a backdoor gutting of our national defense, the Constitution's #1 mission, to pay for popular social spending programs. Not only is it wrong, it undermines national security by making military service the nation's most dangerous job with low pay and few real benefits.

  80. The cuts to military benefits begin. Lowest taxes in 60 years? You can expect many more cuts to everything that has previously defined America…the bad, and the good. Unless taxes raise, deficit will climb and quality of life will deteriorate. Civilization (and America) is defined by government, like it or not.

  81. Bald Eagle | August 2, 2011 at 2:29 pm |

    "God and the Soldier, we adore,
    In time of danger, not before.
    The danger passed and all things righted,
    God is forgotten and the Soldier slighted."
    Rudyard Kipling
    Also read his "Tommy."

  82. The way I compare this is as follows. The closest bridge between military and civilian is the guard/reserve. Civilians have that civilian job as does the guard/reserve. They are in that environment building a career and tenure. Active duty can't do that at all. We are full in, and all about the military. Even with guard/reserve pulling more spun up time/deployed time that before, they still have a civilian job protected by law waiting for them when they return. Active duty members retire and deserve that pay for the many reasons stated above but more so because most jobs in the military do not transition to civilian life very easy. It is a hunt to find a job you can do even with a degree. Yes the job market is crap but it is even harder when your 40 and trying to START a new career that is totally different than what you did in the military. With your only saving grace on the resume being that your military service shows commitment and ability to show up on time every day and maybe manage a few people. Guard and Reserve folks can work (multitask) two careers at the same time by working a civilian job (lets use IT for example) where the member is trained, has a degree, and his certificates….and is working on the military career with benefits while he is serving and a retirement that will kick in when he is 60 something. The active duty man gets to retire from maintenance and the flight line maybe with a degree and some certifications but with 0 years of credible on the job experience required to get him even close to the take home pay of a MSgt upon retirement. Yeah we need that check now not later for this reason and for the ones stated by many others. Yes we raised our hand and took an oath, an oath like a contract held up on our end but not on theirs. You promise me something and get me to say yes and then take it from me later is a breach of contract. they can call it hard times and bad physical management of the country's money and debt all they want. The reform they plan to do on the military is still the breaking of a promise. all of this and the un-employment hand out is still 99+ weeks.

  83. Same old Song! With no middles class or skilled jobs you must become doctor, lawyer, or account. Ooops! for politicians. With not middle class jobes many will be forced to stay in, but only the best and brighest. Forgot Chinese owned companies don't like US veterans! Good Luck!

  84. It's not the Democrats who have blamed teachers, state workers and now federal workers for the downfall of our economy. Who believe bankers and wall street hedge fund managers are entitled to million dollar bonuses without paying higher taxes.

    We better decide whose side we are on. I'm on the side of the great middle class, the class that built and defended this great nation Together we stand, divided we fall.

  85. You know why we deserve a better deal than a civilian gets after retirement; because we give more of ourselves, our families, of our lives in general than any other job in this country. That 20 years in the Navy means most of us spent half of it away from this country thats about to strip us of what we have come to expect at the end of our faithful service. I am disgusted by all of this talk about the retirement benefits. If this goes down, and they change how we receive our retirement benefits, I think I would leave this country to live somewhere else.

  86. What really gets me is I haven’t read or heard of any member of the Senate or Congress suggests a reduction in their salaries, or a change to their pensions. After all these changes are coming from a group of men and women who get to vote for their own pay raises. Something is seriously wrong here.

    Now the Republicans have this radical group known as the TEA PARTY. Who claim to be defenders of the common man. These are the same people who held the country hostage during the Debt Ceiling vote because they refuse to discuses the need to raise the taxes on the riches 2% of Americans. By the way the same 2% who control over 90% of the wealth in this country. How many of these folks served in the military?

    By the way Social Security is not an entitlement. Every working American with a legal job pays into Social Security and Medicare with each paycheck they earn.

  87. It's amazing to me that we set the condition to allow the super rich to amass their wealth by ensuring freedom in this country, to win the cold war, to prevent major terrorist strikes from migrating to our homeland, and now we are having to again give the last full measure by loosing what many of us have worked towards which is an honorable retirement? Totally betrayed.

  88. GREAT. Social security is collected and saved by the GOVERNMENT for your use when you retire. Wait- No iot's not saved. It's taken by the GOVERNMENT to spend as they want. Tha's why SS is going broke. There is no SS. Now, do the same thing to our Military and take 7% of their pay and , again, let the GOVERNMENT save it for their retirement. Oh, wait, they won't save it, they will take it and spend it on whatever they want. SS scam coming again. Thanks a lot.

  89. sporte1111 | August 3, 2011 at 1:03 am |

    If that is true why did our national debt double under George Bush 5 trillion to 10.7 trillion now that a dem is in office it's so important to make cuts??? All Bush did was use our Military to protect the very rich and his family's foreign interests to export jobs and use slave labor in other countries. Average overall cost the US taxpayers pay for each soldier per year is $1.2 million and the soldier only get about $30K out of it the rest goes to the rich who get all the tax cuts leaving the average Joe to pay all there taxes for them.

  90. Grandfather ….Grandfather…Grandfather….You know when Sec Gates left, he said of the Thrift Savings Plan/end to 20 year retirement–that it wouldn't affect those currently serving….huh????? Anyway I just saw a Powerpoint presentation today that lays out this unthought out plan. Thanks Mr. Gates!!

  91. MR GATES I think you should have at least suggested a grandfather clause—not a partial grandfather clause—but a full-on one. It would have been nice if you could have given us an exit plan on this—especially for those who have spent 17 or more years serving –to tell us that now we're not going to be getting our 20 year retirement. Instead of implementing this new plan ASAP, why not give us several years to mull it over before it gets thrust on us? Why should we wait to age 57-60 to see the fruits of our labor? For those of us who have already spent 14-20 years in, why not give us a lump sum now to whet our appetite–how bout some compensation for the 50 months some of us lost through deployments? Why not something similar to the $30,000 some people opted to receive at the 15 year mark when people get out after 20 years. In other words when someone gets out at 20 years, at least give them something immediately–like a lump payment and then give them the retirement at 57. If this plan goes out there like it is—I foresee a mass exodus of great senior leaders as well as many mid-term troopers leaving. As a senior leader I see myself leaving if this goes into effect as is.

  92. The Tea Party wants a smaller government that is less intrusive in peoples' private lives. They are generally the most patriotic members of our society who whole heartedly support our military. If some whack job said this than he certainly doesn't speak for everyone in the movement. And FYI don't call me or anyone else you don't know a "Tea Bagger." Let's try to bring a little civility back to our country.

  93. David Bennett | August 3, 2011 at 10:02 am |

    I find it interesting that our government continues to try to apply a civilian retirement system to the military. If this retirement reform becomes policy, many talented Soldiers will walk away from the military early in their careers, leaving a large leadership void within the ranks. It is impossible to grow experienced senior NCO's and officers. If all of the talent opts to take their TSP and run at 10 years, who will lead the military of tomorrow?

  94. David Bennett | August 3, 2011 at 10:02 am |

    I find it interesting that our government continues to try to apply a civilian retirement system to the military. If this retirement reform becomes policy, many talented Soldiers will walk away from the military early in their careers, leaving a large leadership void within the ranks. It is impossible to grow experienced senior NCO's and officers. If all of the talent opts to take their TSP and run at 10 years, who will lead the military of tomorrow?__

  95. This is the beginning of the end of U.S. military. No benifits whatsoever and you won't see and person in their right mind join and risk being killed or come home without arms/legs/brains. If Washington can't see the future in this decision they really are blind and the'yll get just what they deserve. NOTHING's, DRUG ADDICTS, AND A MILITARY DRAFT. We have already been there, done that, don't they remember.

  96. A. Bouchard | August 3, 2011 at 3:10 pm |

    [Under the cur­rent sys­tem a newly retir­ing E-7 at age 40 with 20 years of ser­vice with retired pay of about $24K a year would see his or her retire­ment checks grow to over $80K a year by age 85.]
    This statement from above is not correct. You max out at 75% of your base pay. Show me an E-7 that makes $80,000 on active status!
    How many civilian jobs have to be 24/7/365? NONE!

  97. They might as well come up with a new mandatory service plan or a new draft law also, because very few will volunteer to serve. Especially if they will have to wait until they are 57. Let's face it, our leadership are only concerned about one group's retirement, their own!! I think our country should have a mandatory service requirement anyway. Even if it's to serve in the military as a non-combat medic or purely admin, behind the lines, so to speak, kind of service. Then maybe some of the future leaders will see first hand what it's like to serve your country in the military.

  98. Where are all the associations I pay dues to? Are they in lobby mode?

  99. I hope there is at least a majority of politicians with the integrity to honor the promises and committments made to our troops. Many of us have lived our lives and turned down more lucrative opportunities in reliance on the contracted for retirement plan that has been sold and promised to us. Altering this would be a grave travesty of justice.

  100. Gomer Pile | August 3, 2011 at 8:27 pm |

    Next they will take the retirement from those already collecting it. Nothing is guaranteed in this world. What the military men need is a good lawyer to fight those bastards in Congress.

  101. Come on now, you know you were the one who was lazy and couldn't hack it so you chose to get out. Don't worry, I am sure you will eventually get promoted at your position at Taco Bell.

  102. MidwestMAJJim | August 4, 2011 at 5:30 pm |

    The retirement system will be changed because the ultra rich who control the country don't want to pay for it. They've attacked private pensions, public pensions, unions who try to protect pensions, and now military pensions. Retirees and active duty members who continue to cheer and elect Tea Party anti-tax Republicans will reap their just reward, and lose their benefits. Remember when Bush praised those serving in Iraq and Afghanistan, then cut VA funding. If you voted for the GOP stop complaining.
    It's time America paid its bills, and that requires a modest increase in taxes for the top 1%-2% who now control 90% of America's wealth. Even Obama and the Dems were willing to make a real long term debt deal, with some cuts, but the Tea Party wants blood–your blood. We even could return to the tax rates of Reagan or Clinton and balance the budget. (And they created jobs too!) I now pay higher taxes than General Electric. And GE is sending jobs to China (Communist China). Americans are now paying the lowest overall level of taxes as part of the Gross Domestic Product since the Korean War. But the corporate controlled media won't tell you that. The relatively low taxes haven't created jobs, and they allow the debt to grow. And you will lose your retirement. Thanks for your service.

  103. This whole thing sickens me. My husband is in 18yrs. now getting ready to go on his 6th deployment. He has missed so many important milestones from our children's lives just like so many other soldiers. They sacrifice so much and this is how our government repays them? These back to back deployments what were they for? What did he stay in for? For a pat on the back on his way out the door.Why would anybody stay in now? What a joke it is to see Michele Obama to TV telling people to support our troops. Why don't you? Why isn't our government? Now with the economy sinking even more into recession and jobs being scarce how is a serviceman suppose to support his or her family? We're quick to go send help to others in need though. What is happening to our America?

  104. It makes me sick to know that the founding fathers of our country gave up their life and their fortune to make our goverment. They wrote our constitution without getting an eighth of the pay our congressmen get just to uphold the constitution. their would be a goverment shut down if we asked our congressmen to do what was asked of Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, And James Madison. Those are the true leaders of this country.

  105. What year were you forced to get out? Or how many times passed over? Those low performance reports really kill any chance of promotion, don't they? As Sam said, hang in there, I am sure Taco Bell will eventually realize your true potential. Smells like a troll.

  106. A_Free_America | August 6, 2011 at 10:35 pm |

    TO: geronimo: if this new retirement plan goes through…….1) no one will enlist. 2) America will have no way of defending itself against others w/out military. 3) everyone who is able will have to enlist. 4) maybe one day when your # gets called from the mandatory enlistment registry, they WILL HAVE to put a gun to your head to make you serve, and I hope the trigger doesn't accidentally misfire.

  107. As retired men and women of the Armed Services of the United States of America we have learned in our branch of service that we lead by example and that to be a leader it starts at the top. It is a shame that our so called leaders from the president on down through the congress and senate do not themselves take cuts in their pay for the lack of decision making, Lack of Leadership, and overall job performance. If it were you or I out here in the job world performing like our leaders we would be fired or reprimanded for the lack of job performance or worse. Our leaders forget the sacrifices that were made by our families and each and every soldier, sailor, marine and airman/women. If they are true at what their forked tongues say then again they need to start at the top to make the cuts! Because right now their job performance is below par. Our government talks big but their actions speaks louder than volumes. To each and every retiree out there contact your elected officials and voice your concerns. In another 2 years these guys may be out on the street. One last thing, my opinion, the good ole senate boys need to be limited to a 2 term seat, this carreer politician crap just aint working for the U.S. And old saying "give'm enough rope and they will hang themselves." And Tricare, some of us where we are located have only this unless we travel 3 to 4 hours away from our homes to take advantage or other retired benefits.

  108. John Vasko, Jr | August 7, 2011 at 4:56 pm |

    it is rather disturbing that after serving 28+ years there are still elected officials that believe we don't deserve the retirement pay that we receive. Just think, had I run for office and won, I could have served my term and then had the government support me and mine for the rest of my life. What a joke. They have also forced a medical system on tme that they are not required to adhere to. Wake up America, This administration is corrupt! God Bless America and all of the REAL Citizens!

  109. This is just another slap in the face. If they want to save money,someone needs to step in and make some new laws on how Congress gets paid,then we need to stop ALL aid to other countries,stop hiring civilians to do the work of the military and paying them twice what we would get,and stop the outrageous enlistment bonuses. When my husband joined he did it becasue he wanted to and he didn't get one cent. It doesn't take a genius to figure it out. But,no one wants to ruffle any feathers. And no,no one stuck a gun to his head and made him enlist,but he enlisted under the promise of atleast 50% retirement for life and free medical for life,in exchange for sacraficing 20 years of his,mine and our childrens life!!! If this goes through,it's a breach of contract!!!

  110. This piece of trash retirement plan is supposed to save $254 billion in 20yrs?! Are they serious! The government spends that much money in a single week. What happens to those of us who are getting ready to retire now? I don't read no grandfather clause for us. This is the governments means of forcing us to depend on them when they are already undependable. I stuck it out for nearly 20 yrs for this pension. Government needs to cut their BS programs and quit giving taxpayers money to foreign countries and the enemies to the U.S.

  111. So glad I got out before investing another 10 years for something like this.

  112. Army Officer | August 10, 2011 at 5:35 am |

    Don't waste time and energy posting comments on the open web. Send these comments to your elected officials. Write letters and make phone calls. By the way, it isn't just the current administration that is eye-balling military retirements and benefits. The Tea Party would have us cut down to nothing as well and the GOP is now beholden to the Tea Party. They are all in it together. What won't be sacrificed is the bloated and unnecessary billion dollar defense contracts. Those guys pay for political campaigns, Soldiers pay with their lives.

  113. As a Korean vet 1952-1953 I figured that I made aproximately 17 cents per hour 24/7. I would gladly do it again, and No I did not avail myself of any benifits after I was seperated, other than the VA Loan. We were told at the time of seperation " This country owes you nothing". That stuck with me and I never applied for anything including medical care at the VA hospital.

  114. How are they going to persuade people talented along with the untalented to stay for 30 ??? The highest rank would be E6 or 03 throughout the services. Whoever cooked up this plan has no idea the BS members of the military put up with and smile.

  115. Just another incident where those who have no knowledge of what we sacrificed for our country
    are trying to eliminate those benifits we were promised and dedicated our lives in order to get them. How many members of congress have made the miltary a career? Yet they get full beneifits if they only serve a few days or one term. Free medical for the rest of their lives. That SUXS big time. They also get lifetime pensions guaranteed from day one. How ridiculose is this? Also they voted to give themselves aoutomatic pay raises but we haven’t gotten any in 3 years nor as has social security.How fair is that? Enough said. Fire their asses and lets get back to what is right. God Bless the USA!!!!!!!!

  116. If this plan ever goes into effect,i can,t see anyone staying after their first tour of duty,if they do there craze as hell,I,m wondering if this goes into effect for the top brass or did they grant themselves a golden parchute.

  117. In addition to many comments above,

    If this plan was to take place immediate with no grandfather; I know of many folks that will not show up to work the next day and there after. As yes they have VOLLUNTEERED to join, but with the certainty of conditions. If those conditions are betrayed, the personal feeling is, "they broke their end of the deal, therefore, I can break mine".

    I personnally can empathize with this attitude, as I and many others have sacrificed many more things than a person that has never served can understand… IE; Your RIGHTS (freedom of speech, freedom of expression,and more i cant think of right now), If OBAMA says "Your going to Afganistan" and your wife says "NO!!!" Guess where you are still going, lol….

    We protect freedom, but dont practice it. The military is a dictatorship and not a democracy.

    PS; do we really want to piss off a full generation of seasoned warfighting experts? I wouldnt.

  118. It appears, once again, the prostitutes in the congress and senate still don't get it. A career in the military is NOT the same as a career in civilian life. First off, the pay is not even comparable, neither are the sacrifices. It would save more money if the prostitutes would look inward. First, they are already millionaires by the time they are sworn in, plus their asses are for sale to whomever is paying the most, so they should forego their AUTOMATIC pay raises and any retirement. Here is a new concept, why not let public service, be just that instead of selling the country down the river. Its about time that Americans start to view politicians as what they are–ASS PEDLERS. They are selling your ass and my ass down the river, and we're paying these bastards pretty well to do it. The American people need to come together and redefine the role of our politicians. I believe that since they act like whores, they should be treated like whores with the same kind of compensation.

  119. the only way to bring about change is to lobby your elected officials while there's still time! in approximately 6 months, the "feedback" period for the proposals will be over and the issue goes to Congress when they reconvene. NOW is the time to be proactive in contacting those officials who make the biggest difference. Attend town halls, phone your congressmen/congressowmen's offices, write emails, organize rallies, contact local news outlets. we must be PROACTIVE if we wish to have any sort of effect on the proposed changes.

  120. This scares me. I'm a retired 1stSgt who served 22 yrs in the corps. I now see active duty servicemen and women in all branches going through alot more than I did and now they are facing a threat like this. I can only imagine the effect it now has on morale and the difficulties it creates in maintaining discipline. Battalion and company level officers and SNCOs have enough of a challeng in the best of circumstances to maintain morale and discipline. Troops are well informed and most at an age to where emotions override logic. Recruiters assigned to the street can only rely on creative ways of selling intangible benefits while those reponsible for training recruits will be stuck with what recruiters can find without the option of recycling or discharging the less qualified. The environment for the motivated, quality enlisted personnel on their first or second enlistment would be in danger of taking a seriously negative tone that eventually overwhelm them. We desperately need high morale. For me to sit back and collect my pension while some young serviceman or woman my children's age is gojng through life phsically/mentally maimed burdens my conscience enough. Taking away their hard-earned pensions until they are senior citizens pours salt on the wound. All things being fair, do we already-retired military surrender our pensions until we reach 57-60? I am nearly there, but our young brothers and sisters have a long way to go if this proposal is put into effect. Lets hope that logical minds prevail and this notion gets put into the circular file where it belongs.

  121. RJ Donovant | August 16, 2011 at 11:00 am |

    What about overhauling the Congressmans and Senators Retirement as well….Don't just screw the Military, we blead for ours, you didn't…………….

  122. I have a very simple solution for the government to save money that would not impact our retirement. Restructure the Military Supply System. There is no reason that a toilet seat that can be purchased at any hardware store for less than $20 should cost hundreds of dollars in the supply system. Things like that should be considered for cuts before taking away from all of us who have given so much for our country.
    STS1 USN

  123. How about cutting into the executive (President, vice president, and all the secretaries (ie defense, state, and etc.). The legislature (The senate, house of representatives, and all their staff). The Judical (members of Supreme court and their staff. With all that money it would save.

  124. Last I checked the military was not a civilian career. I'd like to see how many civilians would do any combat tours in the trench for that pathetic retirement. I am disgusted as well as everybody else I'm sure. OUR government should be ashamed for what they're trying to do. Take our military out of Iraq and Afghanistan and I'm sure our money issues will diminish. I plan on twenty years on the current plan, but if it changes I will pack my bags and training and go on my way. This would ruin some Soldiers life plans. Let's stop worrying of taking care of the rest of the world and worry for our own. Prepare for a revolution congress if this decision is made, I'm sure there is some PTSD fellas out there who have some anger they'd like to let loose.

  125. Guardsmen and reservists have to wait until they are 60. So why not active duty? Right now we have to do what is right to save America before we turn into the Weimar Republic version 2.

  126. I think you will see mass retirements very soon if there is even a hint of this passing.

  127. Msgt, USAF, Retired | September 19, 2011 at 5:53 pm |

    People who have never served just don't understand or care about us or our sacrifices. We have become a means to an end. We have become a pawn in the current political season nothing more. —- God Bless those that have served and those that are serving.

  128. MMCM(SS), USN, Ret | September 19, 2011 at 7:17 pm |

    I understand the disgust and anger. I too am upset with the reduction in benefits and personnel. They, meaning those that have not served, do not understand the sacrifice that we have made in our lives. I do offer this one comment to those that say they will not stay and get out. We currently have 9+% unemployment in this country. With force reductions and people volunteering getting out where are you going to find jobs. Before you leap from the frying pan to the fire. Think about what you are going to do once you get out. Life is way different on the outside. My recommendation, if you are going to vote with your feet, is to line up a profession and a location to live before you take that leap. Good luck to all that have served, and those that are continuing to serve.

  129. Ronald Mandell | September 20, 2011 at 7:27 am |

    If this goes thru, and they make it retroactive to those already in the military, then I say a "March" on DC is justified, just like the WWI "Bonus Marchers" during the Great Depression. Count me in! I'd like to see a several million veterans marching past the White House – make the war protest marches of the early '70s look like a cub scout meeting, by comparison.

  130. If they pull this S–T, They better prepare to put illegal immigrants in our places or start the draft. Ive seen ships parked without a crew in Carter days.

  131. What you people failed to realize is that the military has changed , and it will
    Continue to change to a point where humans won’t be necessery or
    Will be needed very little. It will be all robots and one day
    Robots will patrolling the streets . It’s not the REP & DEM it’s the
    Bankers and the new world order that wants to
    Control your every life from what you eat to what you
    Think they want totall control and they are winning because
    We are too busy fighting eachother and the bankers are making
    Billions.

  132. The writing campaign to our elected officials has failed. The time has come to show our elected officials that we are united once again for the common goal of holding them accountable for commitments made to us past and present for our service to our great nation. We sacrificed and fulfilled our commitments, and will do so if called upon again.
    I concur with a post by Ronald Mandell that a "March" on DC is justified. Who, What, When, Where, Why and How?

  133. Cynthia G Hatcher | January 23, 2012 at 6:56 pm |

    How can the government continue to not honor their contracts signed when military personnel enlisted. You will not be able to maintain a valuable military force if Congress continues to dishonor our vets, especially those who served for a lifetime. My husband continually put himself in harms way to serve his country.
    He earned every penny.
    .

  134. As a vet, I welcome the change. Many of the Service Members in today's military do not do 20 years, but have no rewards for their service. The revised plan would allow the 1-, 2- or 3-term members to receive relative compensation for their service as well.

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