Report Calls for Tricare and Military Retirement Cuts

November 06, 2012 | Terry Howell

On October 31, the Center for American Progress, an influential think tank, released a report titled ‘Rebalancing Our National Security.’ The report calls for freezing future military pay raises, forcing working age military retirees to use employer-provided health care plans, and changing the current 20-year retirement plan to a 401K style pension program, which would make retirees wait until age 60 to start receiving it – this could affect anyone currently in the military with less than 10 years of service.

The report also recommends changing Tricare for Life coverage by making older retiree’s cover their first $500 expenses out-of-pocket and only cover 50 percent of the next $5,000 in Medicare cost-sharing.

The Military Officers Association of America responded with the following editorial.

MOAA Boos CAP Halloween Report

On Halloween, the Center for American Progress (CAP) released yet another report that is anything but a Halloween treat — calling for huge cuts to military pay, retirement, and health care benefits.

Titled “Rebalancing Our National Security,” the report’s task force opposes the across-the-board cuts of sequestration, but suggests shifting more spending from the Defense Department to the State Department and Homeland Security. In CAP’s terminology, the intent would be to move from “offense” to “prevention” (non-military international engagement) and “defense.”

As part of that process, CAP recommends capping military pay raises, cutting troops assigned permanently in Europe and Asia, and scaling back military retirement and health care benefits.

Their retirement reform proposal is a retention-killing combination of the Defense Business Board and 10th Quadrennial Review of Military Compensation recommendations. It would put new recruits under a 401K-like retirement system, and would grandfather only part of the current force.

Troops with 10 or more years of service could choose the existing plan or opt-in to the new 401K. Those with less than 10 years would have to choose the new 401K plan or be converted to a much-reduced retirement benefit that would provide 40 percent of basis pay for 20 years’ service…with payments delayed until age 60.

As if this doorstep gift bag were not sufficiently aflame, CAP would also cut back dramatically on TRICARE for Life coverage, imposing a $500 deductible and capping TFL coverage at 50% of the next $5,000 in annual health costs.

MOAA believes such attacks on career service benefits are reckless and misguided in the extreme.

They ignore that the current package of retirement and health benefits is the primary incentive to induce top-quality people to endure the extraordinary demands and sacrifices inherent in a 20-30 year career in uniform.

They also ignore that a far less-drastic retirement change imposed on new service entrants after 1986 had to be repealed after the Joint Chiefs of Staff complained it was undermining retention and readiness.

These kinds of trick-or-treat proposals would be ludicrous if the threat they’d pose to readiness weren’t so serious.

Boo.

Let your elected officials know how you feel about this issue.

Comments

  1. GZRetired says:

    Wow! I'd bet that these so called "think tanks" didn't think what "military readiness" is and what service to your country means. $500 deductible and 50% of the next $5000 is not what TFL retirees can afford nor should they be forced to pay after so much sacrifice. Think about it some more!

  2. Idmtmedic says:

    And the hits just keep coming. Can't wait to hear the "spin" on this one by certain folks on these blogs. Good thing the government is on our side to fight these think tanks. Oh wait, that's what our military retiree organizations are trying to do.

  3. Lets Rebalance the following: Welfare, Illegal Immigration, Congressional Salaries and Benefits and Foreign Aid. Bet that will "rebalance" a lot.

  4. Interesting, no one asked, "Where does this "think tank" get its funding?" ……..Reminds me of the song by Bachmann Turner Overdrive, "I love to be think tank employed, sit around and do nothing all day. And they will takin care of thinking everyday.'

  5. I also love the part about 1986 changes having to be REPEALED due to readiness and retention problems. Now go figure why that would happen again?

  6. LeeretArmy says:

    Glad I waisted 20 years of my life to be thrown under the bus. The fist full of pills I take to be able to function will be switched to M&Ms.

  7. The older the retiree gets, the more dependent he/she is on Medicare and TriCare. I am 72 years old and have several service-related disabilities. Seems that I visit several doctors and have appointments for lab work, etc., every few weeks. I shuffle around, can barely see, can't hear well and spend a lot of time standing over the toilet peeing (mostly on the floor). The DOD needs to take a pragmatic look at those who have been retrired for more than 30 years. One solution is an Executive Order requiring those who have been retired for 30 years be euthanized for the good of society. Spare those retirees who take fewer than 20 medications daily, and those who do not have to use Depends. We old retirees are still viable in ways. We personify the cantankerous codgers whose caustic comments are needed to balance out the liberal segment of society. Let's implement the Military Retiree Euthanasia Program soon, but I would like it to be done alphabetically starting with those who last names begin with "A". That way it would take a while to get to me. I might last a few years. By that time I would look forward to being put out of my misery.

    • Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha. Good one!

    • Excellent! I'd laugh but … MREP wouldn't surprise me a bit.

    • "but I would like it to be done alphabetically starting with those who last names begin with "A"

      Hey, I'm 75. I've been retired 23 years and I share your pains. BTW, during my career, I was always assigned a lot of bad details because they always started with "A" when the assignments were handed out I suggest starting the MRER with "Z." Give us "A" and "B" folks a break for a change. (GRIN) Thanks!

    • You are so funny, ever thought about going out of retirement to become a comedian? :) You would be great!!!! And I'll be your agent!
      Great idea using the alphabet, as I'm a 'Z' !!!!

    • jean rennick says:

      Amen brother, its such a dirty shame isn't it. God bless you

    • I love you Mitchell

    • With respect to the peeing problem, it was solved for me. Agent Orange gave me prostate cancer, they took that sucker out, no more peeing problem!

  8. I notice none of the prior commenters said anything about the provision to force working-aged retirees to use employer's healthcare. I also spent 20+ years serving my country, and it is only thanks to the (very) modest retirement pension that I can afford to work where I like, instead of having to work 2 or 3 jobs. However I can NOT afford my employer's healthcare plan unless I do work another job. I was promised (free) healthcare for life for my family and I when I joined in 1983, regardless of the DOD & Congress' claims that my recruiter wasn't authorized to make those promises, so now I have to pay for my Tricare as a retiree. Now these 'thinking' people want to take it away from me since I have to work. What a country we have made for ourselves. I am sickened by the plans that these folks come up with to balance the budget on my back. And now we have another 4 years of Socialist agenda to face. Oh Joy!

    • Jeff don't worry, just become part of the 47% right? We didn't earn it so let's become part of the problem. Don't pay insurance and go to your local ER. that's exactly what is going to happen. And for those small companies that can't afford to pay health insurance? Lay offs and more part time workers…;). Great plan!

    • Give Obama A Chance,He will probably raise your retirement with more incentives and pay after he gets done with all these billionare rappers $ sports players we will never lose our fighting force in this country so relax retirees and enjoy your new found wealth.That you will recieve for serving our country in the worst wars we have ever had. What we need to change is all the new fresh recruits that will be rapped, and the perpetrator will get away with it. Remmeber serve openly. I know been there. Do you think the V.A cares i dont think so.(NEVER HAS NEVER WILL) They just gave a license to rape OUR YOUNG ENLISTED. To all the pedifiles enlisted in our US MILITARYWILL NEVER BE PROSECUTED.(SIMPER FI) hHOORAHHHHHHHHHHHH.GOD BLES YOU ALL AND THANK YOU FOR SERVING OUR COUNTRY (AMEN)

  9. just think what another 4 yrs of this administration will bring.

  10. Seth Mills says:

    Our contract promised health care for life if we completed the 20 (+) years. It isn't free, although its not expensive now. VA covers some, tricare covers some, medicare covers some. If we need assisted living we can get it, provided the waiting list isn't too long, only about a year or three now, if we qualify.
    I'm in my second career and am making several thousands more than when I was in service. This will allow me and the wife to have a decent, comfortable retirement, when I reach full retirement age. That wouldn't be the case if this "retirement plan" had been initiated.
    Besides let's not forget, retirement isn't. Our retirment is actually a retainer paid by the gov't for possible future services, as part of the retirement the contract says the gov't can at its option recall us to service at its convenience. We don't get a choice at that point of not coming back, no matter what we "want".
    If they want to initiate this "plan" I suppose we could ask that it be a real retirement with no possibility of being called back to service.

  11. MMJRetired says:

    If they force working age retirees to use employer provided insurance instead of tricare then i would think in a couple years at most they would then be forced into obamacare. Sounds like the beginning of the end for Tricare to me and without a doubt the end of Tricare for life. If your not yet retired this should be extremely important to you and if your retired like me then why worry becuase a socialist government will do what it wants without caring about what we think.

  12. How about these think tank members give up the same benefits their deamnding of us, see if they're still willing to go through with it then.

  13. This "think tank" is all wrong.Totally lacking in knowledge about our military and how we function from recruit to retiree.This will decimate our ability to recruit and retain much needed talent.Send these bozos to another planet.

  14. It's all a push to put everyone, except politicians, on Obamacare.

    • Ron,

      Nope, not going to happen.

      Health Care Repeal Won’t Affect TRICARE

      http://militaryadvantage.military.com/2011/01/oba

      TRICARE Affirmation Act

      http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/BILLS-111hr4887enr/p

      • No but Tricare fees may affect Obama care. When retired military have to pay more than half their retirement check for health they will drop out of Tricare and be a part of Obama care. The funds shift and regardless it's paid for by the taxpayers.

        • idmtmedic,

          Huh, why in the world would a retiree drop out of $22.44 per month and choose pay somewhere around $500.00 per month for health care?

          • Idmtmedic says:

            Read the next article Charles.

          • Idmtmedic,

            I think I will just stick to the topic at hand.

            Huh, why in the world would a retiree drop out of $22.44 per month and choose pay somewhere around $500.00 per month for health care?

          • No that would be more around 800 or more in 5 years on Prime, which won't be an option for many soon enough and you can't keep your current provider if your off Prime genius. But don't worry your Tricare for Life is safe…….lmao.

          • Idmtmedic,

            Huh, are you lost????? Losing Tricare Prime isn't losing Tricare all together, they just move to Tricare Standard that's all.

            What to you mean he can't keep the same provided????? Yes he can, he just pays more on his end of things. Hello!

          • Ohhhh see, thank you for correcting me. I guess my military provider will now accept Tricare standard because Charles said I wouldn't lose my provider. Thank you sooo much Charles.

          • Idmtmedic,

            Here you go again confusing Tricare with The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

          • Not confusing anything. I responded to your answer, which you didn't address.

          • Idmtmedic,

            Here you go again confusing Tricare with The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

          • Idmtmedic,

            No, the President said you wouldn't lose your provider, but he wasn't talking about those Military guys. Surely you already knew that?????

          • Let me clarify for you. TRICARE PRIME and keeping your military provider as a retiree living more than 40 miles from base. Answer……….YES you lose your provider and are FORCED to go to standard which costs MORE money. Simple as that.

          • med,

            Your still confused.

          • Charles when you find your balls again, decide if you want to be proactive instead of reactive of which you are neither. Leading from behind gets you a bad taste of congressional gas…….and your full of it. Not sure you could lead a group of church ladies across the street. You would stand in the middle because the light is red and get everybody killed because you got NOOOOOO leadership and want others to GIVE you direction. Guess what……..shssss your a civilian now lmao

          • medic,

            The best thing that could happen to you, is for your Tricare fee to go up annually until it equals what civilians are paying. After that, I think a cut in your Retirement Check would be a good idea. Then, I would look into stopping you annual COLA.

            Once this has been accomplished I would look you up 5 years later and see how you feel then. Should I see either hand moving up with open palm (begging position) I would again start looking at more cuts for you.

      • Keep on believing Ron and you will learn the hard way, Obama HATES the military and will do all he can to destroy it. Look at the outfit that did the report: The Center for American Progress is a progressive liberal public policy research and advocacy organization.

    • Obama is NOT even on ObamaCare, does that tell anyone anything….

      • don,

        None of the Federal Workers are on what you call Obama care. I guess you didn't know, that as long as your Health Care Plans meets the Goals of Obama care then you can keep what you have.

        Just like Tricare, as long as it meets the Goals of Obama care, then Tricare is honored.

        • Clearly you DID NOT read the report, typical lib lots of talk but none of it based on anything

          • don,

            Not sure what planet your on, but this report above has nothing to do with Tricare.

          • Question is what fn planet you come from? The almighty wanna be moderator, fact checker lmao. Got plenty of those already. Your a sit back and watch kinda guy that relies on everybody else to do the work and then takes the credit. Worked with many desk pushers like you. Feel sorry for ANYBODY that served under you. Anybody that states they have a career blogging is a joke. Either your getting paid to blog or just too stupid to realize what is happening to VETERANS benefits. I go with paid because I just can't figure a vet is that stupid. But…….your proving me wrong.
            Http:vetswithheadsupas#s.com
            Check out your link…lmao

          • idmtmedic,

            Medic, no one is taking anything away from you. When they do, I will be one of many that will be able to tell what it was without making things up. Feel free to use this time to put into print all the items you and yours claim to have been taken away from you… Make sure that those items are in all your CONTRACTS that you need to post on this site:

            http://groups.yahoo.com/group/MyMilitaryHistory/

          • Lmfao, well damn Charles thanks for that info. I never even thought I should have checked with you first…lmao, lmao. Guess your now a veterans guide to benefits? I'm going to let my military retiree organizations know that they no longer need to lobby on our behalf. YOU have it under control and will let us know when our benefits are in danger. What a load of pompous, asinine, arrogant BS. On the other hand funny as hell.

          • idmtmedic,

            Medic, no one is taking anything away from you. When they do, I will be one of many that will be able to tell what it was without making things up. Feel free to use this time to put into print all the items you and yours claim to have been taken away from you… Make sure that those items are in all your CONTRACTS that you need to post on this site:
            http://groups.yahoo.com/group/MyMilitaryHistory/

    • Ron,

      BULL CHIT! I can't believe this lie is still being consumed by us Veterans.

      Health Care Overhaul and TRICARE
      Posted on November 10, 2009

      Question: Would health care overhaul efforts eliminate TRICARE health coverage for members of the military and military retirees?

      Answer: No. This claim in a chain e-mail is false. Neither Congress nor President Obama has proposed legislation to that effect.

      http://factcheck.org/2009/11/health-care-overhaul

    • Ron,

      Sorry, but stick to my Tricare Prime.

  15. oh ok i get it… so the military personal and their families are suppose to live worse than those who are currently living on food stamps and medicare… great! its exactly what this country needs. Why not just have a complete reserve military that way the military personal can get jobs so that they can at least afford to purchase the uniform they sacrifice everything for.

  16. All,

    I would hope that everyone here realizes that this is just a report from some Think Tank with zero links to making any of what they are saying into LAW. I see the above article the same as many here when they post their opinion, and we all know, that opinions won't change anything.

    Spin Stops Here

    • Yup, keep your head in the sand, if you don't look maybe it will go away. Your a great advocate for our benefits. Complain AFTER it takes effect. No reason to write your congressman. They only put that on the bottom of every article on here to take up space. No reason to be alarmed…lmao. Nothing going on here, move along people. Our house is burning but nothing to see here.

      • idmtmedic,

        Let me first refer you to the "Chicken Little" story. You talk about this article above as if someone in the Government commissioned it, which in fact they didn't. Also, you want me to compose an Email/Printed Letter and sent it off to Barack Obama (D), President
        Joseph R. Biden Jr. (D), Vice President, my U.S. Senators, my U.S. House Representative and/or Leon E. Panetta, Secretary of Defense, Secretary.

        Now you're asking me to complain to someone in government about something a civilian "Think Tank" has proposed.

        Go ahead if you wish and be alarmed, and send those in Government your complaint about something they didn't produce.

        As far as my house burning, it isn't. As things stand now, I still have everything I thought I would have when I retired. Unlike many that didn't stay in the service long enough to retired, I retired and living high on the hog so to speak. So, should you feel the need to constantly complain, feel free to so, but in no way are you going to convince how bad I have it, because I have it GREAT.

        • Idmtmedic says:

          Ahhh yes, it's all about you. Not anybody that served with you. Why do I get the feeling you did the same thing in your military career? Alarmed???? Lmao. I guess all vets are crying chicken little huh. Like I have said to you many times. You left your uniform at the blog entrance. I'd pay you to give a speech at a Veterans Day ceremony regarding our benefits! Would looooooove it.

          • Idmtmedic,

            Yep, it is all about me, in that you didn't work for my benefits. I worked for and earned what I have. You whiners need to have never joined the service, since all you do is whine and cry and constantly walk around with you hand out crying for more and more.

          • Like I said, it's all about you. Nobody is asking for more retard only what was promised. The fact your an idiot can't be fixed on this forum. Making any speeches lately? I wanna be at juuuuuuust one and give you a proper greeting. I'm sure you will be sitting with the politicians wiping your nose and their a##s

          • Idmtmedic,

            Why is it when you can't make a decent argument you start calling people names, mocking, condemning, ridiculing, taunting, criticizing, blaming, denouncing, knocking, etc., those that you disagree with?????

            Show me in your contracts (Enlistment/Reenlistment) where all these promises you are talking about! You can post them CONTRACTS on my site which can be found here: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/MyMilitaryHistory/

          • Charles my benefits are being fought through organizations and personal letters to my reps. Your welcome. Yours are unfortunately included with the tireless efforts of those reps. But don't thank them or other vets. Just rest on your laurels.

          • Idmtmedic,

            LMAO, so I guess I'm supposed to thank them for my Retirement Benefits????? No Way Hosay. It was me working hard for those bennies.

          • I'm sure you took a few leadership courses in your career but I don't remember leaving other vets behind in my courses? You go to a different course? "I got mine, screw everybody else speech?" Find your balls again Charles. You must have something to offer…..or maybe not….actually certainly not going to happen.

          • Idmed,

            Sorry, but I'm not going to complain for you about your benefits. Let me repeat myself, I am completely satisfied with my monthly pension, completely satisfied with my monthly fee for Tricare Prime and last but not least, I am completely satisfied with my Social Security Check.

            Why don't you get off my back, and stop trying to spank me into whining and crying for you. If you only knew how good you really have it when compared to soldiers in other countries.

          • Other countries? I knew you were "special" but damn. I suppose those other countries do what we do? Those other countries have nothing at all to do with this one. What a joke!!!

          • Charles,
            This is where the problem lies. Everyone compares to how good we have it to other countires. As well as comparing everything that we are to toher countries. Yes you are enjoying your benefits right now and they are pretty good. But if you dont stay in tune with what is going on you could very well lose them. As well as those that are to retire soon.

          • EWCS USN Ret says:

            Charles and Idmtmedic.

            It would be nice if you two exchanged emails so you could continue this argument elsewhere. You two seem to have very differing opinions, just like the difference between the Red party and the Blue party.

            If you'd like to argue the "WHITE" party, which is in the middle, I think we could get some issues discussed without the liberal / conservative argument.

            Don't be confused, the "WHITE" party has nothing to do with race but with the "Red, White, and Blue" of our flag. We are Americans and need to stand up for American values, not to bicker over benefits that were determined for serving your country.

          • Last I checked we have no liberal vs conservative views. He is a republican and so am I. He is challenged and I am not. He is self serving while I am not. He ignores others sacrifices I do not. He is anti-family for the military I am not. He is pro-government and should be a democrat I am not. The article is about CUTS TO TRICARE AND MILITARY RETIREMENTS. He denies both. What's to talk about. However, thanks for mediating. Or trying to. He's a lost cause and I would rather sit next to a liberal democrat the his sorry a##.

    • SoaringEagle says:

      You are correct…it is only a report. I do not think the Congress would allow this to happen as they would lose votes. My Congressman has vowed to vote against any changes to TFL or any chages that infringe on our EARNED BENEFITS. Semper Fi

      • SoaringEagle,

        Correct, just a report that was commisioned by no one.

        • Naivety, apathy and lack of common sense is and will always be your STRONGEST arguments. Why not do a bit of research on this CAP group and decide how influential they may be before saying they were commissioned by no one. Guess you just accept that it's a study? For what purpose Charles?

          • Idmtmedic,

            Hope, I am not seaching for any information to prove your point, that up to you.

          • Idmtmedic,

            If you want to do some research, drive on. Just go to there site and ask them the questions, instead of me.

          • Let me AGAIN answer for you. Power, influence, policy and an objective. The last part you may understand but I doubt it. Lmao. Political science was a class you missed ALOT or just never took. The question mark was not really a question………I know it's a bit involved for you so more like an inquisitive jab…….an intellectual challenge…lmao.

          • idmedic,

            There you go again, sniveling. Feel free to make a list of all things negative that CAP has accomplished against us retirees.

    • In 2009 they cut the co pay for Tricare for Life to almost zero. I know because I had a kidney with Cancer removed in 2008 at a cost of a bit over $3000. Tricare paid their 75%. I had to pay cash and get reimbursed.
      In 2009 I had to go back and have a cyst remoced from my remaining kidney. they had decided that it cost too much so I got to pay $3000 and they paid $600.
      They also cut the cost of our medications so many of the providers went out of business.
      We still get to pay $100 a month for medicare Part B which we cannot cancel. That is so we can have the worthless Tricare for Life. Medicare is no good here.
      Please do not insult me by suggesting I leave my family at 72 to move to the US.
      Ken

    • I'm not complaining about my retirement because I am satisfied. I do feel that being able to enroll in Tricare Prime if I choose is also a big part of my retirement package. I still don't feel it's right for congress or DOD to make it unavailable to me. Besides it's not like the government is giving it away as we do pay for the coverage. Granted we pay less than your average civilian coverage but we also sacrificed a lot more than your average civilian.
      Also when so many talk about how our retirement is so much better than everyone elses they are making it sound like we are all retired E-9's or senior officers which as we all know we are not.

    • Hal Holland says:

      everyone who voted for Obama now know who the really trick or treat guy is, fortuneatly I did not vote for him, those who did, happy rude awakening

  17. Leo Gerald Johnson says:

    Seth Mill's is right .The Presicent isn't the only person that can recall us.The Secretary of Defense can recall all Military retirees But only in the event of a National Emergency.

  18. The CAP should recommend this plan for congress, state and local politicians. I'm sure they would love having their cadillac health plans taken away, their pay and incentives frozen, and all for a 401k plan after serving for 20+ yrs which they could collect at age 60. Would they continue to serve in government if that happened to them? I think not! So what makes them believe those in the military with less than 10 yrs will stay? The CAP recommendation creates the possibility that our military will not be able to retain experienced service members past an initial enlistment. People will enter the military for the training and a few short years of experience, then exit for a job with real benefits on the outside. As a result, this will have a devastating effect on our national security. Instead of paying to retain experience, the DOD will be paying to train new personnel coming in through this revolving door plan. The CAP’s recommendation further decimates our military as if the pending sequestration and the administration would not be enough. (con’t)

  19. Their recommendation to shift DOD funding to the State Department and Homeland Security is ludicrous. The CAP has also forgotten that the military is on duty 24/7, deployable worldwide at a moment’s notice (except Benghazi, not enough intelligence… I believe they were talking about the situation room!). Our military is NOT overpaid nor are the health care benefits for which we had a contract excessive! Unfortunately our congress has the fewest former military members in history, which probably means that the CAP recommendation makes perfect sense to the rest of them! God Bless America, God Bless our Military, and God Bless ALL who have served, including their families!

  20. retired462 says:

    CAP should be looking at the benefits congress gets; AND MAKE BIG CHANGES THERE !
    1. Put ALL OF THEM (staff and all) under social security; NO GRANDFATHER CLAUSE for any retired/replaced member of congress!
    2. Put them under Obamacare!
    3. While we're on the subject of congress – TERM LIMITS!

  21. NOTE: The Center for American Progress is a progressive liberal public policy research and advocacy organization.

    Another commie socialist org making judgement calls on the military that Obammy HATES

    • don,

      The President doesn't hate the Militrary. He has already won his second tour of duty, no need of you to keep up with the lies.

      • So you support this, then, good, you can pay my bills while you are at it

      • Chazman1946 says:

        Winnig a second tour based on pandering to the takers, at the expense of the Makers is hardly a mandate for sucess. His Marxist policies about economics and his virulent "Tree Hugger" approach to engery independence, will have this county on the verge of collapse in less then two years.

        My advice to everyone is, stock up on food stocks, obtain firearms to protect yourselves, because when the shitstorm hits, those dependency class varmints will run out of food and gas and will come a looking for it in the productive peoples neighborhoods.

  22. Come on everyone. As a prior (non-retired) military vet who works as a federal employee, I can firmly state that the miltary gets GREAT retirement benefits, far beyond most of the US. Retired officers benifits are almost obscence. Those who are low income shout continue to receive priority assistance, but most retired military can afford to pay more for the exceptional benifits they receive. Add the fact that civil service is a jobs program for retired officers (Many GS-13 and above jobs "appear" for retiring officers and are not competed") which provides them with finanical security for life. Time to join the rest of American society folks!

    • Low pay Retiree says:

      I'd like to know what drugs your taking to come up with that one.

    • Dennis,

      Right on. In my family alone, there were 4 of us that have retired from the service and my mother worked a Civil Service Job. Most of us on these type sites have never worked Civil Service so they don't know how good they have it. Those like you that have worked on both sides of the fence know exactly how good we have it.

      Thanks for posting.

    • Dennis,

      Yep, I'm a retired 1SG, with no complaints about my retirement. I must say, most everyone here have attempted time and time again to get me to lie about how bad I have it. I just can't do it though.

      • Lmao, to get you to lie about it? Then I guess your trying to get us to lie about how good we have it. Or your calling the vets whiners, complainers, liars and your GREAT argument is show me the contract. Wtf Meds are you on anyway? Veterans organizations constantly contact our representatives to MAINTAIN those promises and your spitting on their and everyone else's efforts. The reason you post on here is to incite, divide, and disrupt. Your so called facts are nothing more than BS that you search for in 5 minutes. You are getting paid alright or lack more than a few synapses.

        • Idmtmedic,

          Correct, you want me to whine, cry and complain about Veteran Benefits by posting them on these blogs when I don't believe any of things being said about them.

          Correct, post your Enlistment and Reenlistment Contracts showing me where the Government is screwing military retirees. LMAO, those Veteran organizations didn't get me anything, my working for 20+ years got me my benefits.

          LMAO, no, I don't post here to incite, divide, and disrut. I post here because I have a right to post here and enlighten other Veterans about the facts. I've noticed on MANY, MANY occasions you going off and scolding others like me that fail to whine, cry about our benefits. You and yours just hate it when we disagree with you.

          Just remember, I have the same rights as you do, and should I feel satisfied with the benefits I am recieving from the Government, then I can post them here all day long.

          • Cough cough……..Lmfao. Enlighten other Veterans???? I think you must have a huge aura around your body so that the almighty Charles may give us the gospel written on the stones brought down from the temple of contracts from the congress…….anybody hear that music……nice career ya got there. Your contributions to society are now blogging because you want to spread the truth because all the other vets are lying whiners…….I gotcha. And I personally don't believe ANYTHING you say. People burn the flag everyday because the have the right to in this country, as do you to spout your misguided so called facts……….but don't tell any other retiree they didn't earn their retirement AND benefits or their right to complain about them because they suffer more hardships BECAUSE of policy changes that affect their pocketbooks that don't affect you.

          • Idmtmedic,

            What makes you think that the Veterans did not earn their benefits????? I know I earned mine.

          • Ohhhh you mean retirement???? Because you sure as hell don't defend anything else.

          • Idmtmedic,

            I don't need to defend anything else. I have what I earned, and if you don't, then you didn't earn it.

          • Ohh I assure you I earned it. 20 years. Apparently you fine with increases, I am not. Not fighting means it doesn't affect you or other retirees. Apparently you are not part of an active retiree organization. You have checked "out". Asleep at the wheel.

          • Idmtmedic,

            I don't have the time to worry about you. It's not up to me give you any handouts.

          • Lmao………you mean the same handout your getting. Going to love watching your Tricare for Life handout take a nice hit…….

          • EWCS USN Ret says:

            I presuem that you are independently wealthy and can afford to pay for benefits that was earned.

            Talk to the little old ladies that are living on $900 a month, ask them what they think about having to pay $3000 a year extra for what they earned.

            You don't seem to understand that everyone that retires from the military do not double dip. I'd say that most that retire from the military have to get jobs that are totally unrelated to the government.

            I did 28 years, I learned a trade after I got out of the military and have moved on. The military did not define me, I defined the military while I was in, now I define myself as an American that paid his dues and have moved on with my life.

            Sorry about you.

          • Ew you responding to me or Charles? Your response was under my comment so I will wait to respond in kind if I am mistaken let me know.

          • Idmtmedic,

            I can afford it, and still be better off than most.

          • You mean the same handouts your getting?

          • Idmtmedic,

            Sorry, but I can't give you any handouts. What I am recieving from the Government is a pension I worked for. Medic, sorry, but you just don't seem to get it, so go ahead, have the last word, because I've gotta go.

          • Chazman1946 says:

            Are you getting TriCare? Wait till you see the 13 billion dollar cut to that.

            O'Bama would rather give your well earned benefits to some welfare slug who has contributed absolutley ZERO to society, then you. This simply because the welfare slug will vote for him and the democrats, and 2/3rd of the military Active/Retired and vets, won't!

          • Chazman1946,

            Yes, I have Tricare Prime, since I retired in 1995, and have yet to see any cuts in any of my retirement benefits.

          • I was talking about what you say DA

          • The way things are going, you may not have those wonderful benefits for much longer then where will you be!!!!

    • I am a retired officer and I can assure you that civil service is not a jobs program for us. Despite a master's degree and more than 22 years of professional experience in leadership and management positions plus multiple commands, I still seem to come up "not qualified" on positions which are well within my skill sets. I think many career civil servants who did not serve in the military do not understand our flexibility, see us as knuckle dragging neanderthals who never had to meet a budget, or are flat out threatened by the work ethic and integrity we bring to the workforce. My spouse, also a retired officer, also with a graduate degree, 26 years of leadership and management and multiple commands, started as a GS-9 right alongside recent college graduates with no work experience, leadership or management background at all. The job requirements are so inflated for civil service that they require a graduate degree for work that we pay PFCs and SGTS on active duty to handle.

      • Amen bobby!!!!!

      • You were doing well until your last exceedingly insulting and patronizing sentence.

        • No he got it right. Military and civilian are far from comparable to what responsibilities an enlisted have without the degree. It doesn't transfer to civilian and that's a different argument but it's a reality. Even with a degree he is saying the experience didn't help.

        • I'm sorry you find it insulting and patronizing, but I worked next to federal civil servants in many of my assignments, and I saw it firsthand. I had military service members (junior enlisted soldiers) with no computer science degree, just the Army's computer programming school, doing the same work as GS-12s and 13s. I had a tough time explaining to them why the civilian who did exactly the same job they did got paid 3 or 4 times more than they did.

    • The retired military member has already paid for the "exceptional benefits" they are receiving. They have put their family lives on hold while on numerous deployments; suffered debilitating injuries (physical and mental) and at worst, lost their lives while fighting for freedom wherever they are ordered to do so. Their form of payment was to sign a check with their life to the "American society folks!"

      • BWT,

        "The retired military member has already paid for the "exceptional benefits" they are receiving."

        This sounds more like a self evaluation than something that is Constitutional.

        • Now he's a lawyer, lmao. Decades of service constitute a prepaid premium for healthcare. Except for Charles apparently.

          • Idmtmedic,

            Ok, "Decades of service constitute a prepaid premium for healthcare."

            Now, go to your last "RETIREE ACCOUNT STATEMENT" and you will find that statement above FALSE. Why you ask, because you're paying a monthly fee for that Healthcare. You see Idmtmedic, just because Congress said this, doesn't change the facts.

          • I'm guessing you would be fine with us paying 300 a month or more then? That's your statement right. We pay what they tell us to pay and nothing can be done about it. You don't care because it doesn't affect you. Tricare for Life……….is next. Enjoy the ride…lmao

          • Idmtmedic,

            ?

          • Idmtmedic,

            Yes, it is fine with me, and you shouldn't be worrying about me and what I can or can't afford. You need to stop this crap of worrying about everything I post. That's way to much whining. Now get along.

          • I'm more than happy to respond to BS and very happy for you to do the same. I want allllll the other bloggers on here to see what a retired first Sgt does for MAINTAINING benefits for other retired Vets. No handouts, no charity. Earned benefits!!!!!! Want them to shine that big spotlight on a weasellllllllllllll. Turncoat, congress lovin useless waste of…………..ok enough said…happy veterans day Charles…lmao. "they earned it, now you eat it"

          • Idmtmedic,

            Yes, it is fine with me, and you shouldn't be worrying about me and what I can or can't afford. You need to stop this crap of worrying about everything I post. That's way to much whining. Now get along.

          • Chazman19466 says:

            Let me take a wild guess, you are an O'Bama supporter.

    • @ Dennis.. You hit the nail on thye head.. YOU did not retire, you did your time and got out. Ofcourse you sit here and agree with cutting our pay and benefits. You talk about the Ranking Officers who retire and yes I agree they definately make enough to pay higher premiums, hell there retirement at 50% (which most officers are more) puts their monthly pay higher than mine while still on active status. But the greater majority of retiree's are enlisted and not in the small catagory your useing to make your stupid case. I'm about to retire this April after 20 yrs active and 5 reserve prior to that and am 41 yrs old, however after numerous combat deployments I am physically broke and deserve everything I would and should get when I retire. Had you stuck around long enough to retire your attitude would be different. Thank you for your few yrs of service..

    • You Dennis, as a working non-retired military vet may have a GREAT job as a Federal Employee. More power to you. Some where in your military career you must have skipped a few classes concerning benefits to Retirees, widows and dependent children. My husband gave his life defending this country so idiots like you could sound off on topics you know very little or nothing about. The benefits I receive are just barely enough to cover the necessities of life. If they raise the deductible on my Tri Care for Life and then cut in half the amount they cover I will then become a burden on the American people. This is not what was promised to my husband or the thousands of Men & Women that lost their lives in Viet Nam. Maybe when you get home from your great federal job you would start writing checks to the countless number of us this will affect.

    • My husband proudly served 20 years in the military and he EARNED his SMSgt retirement and all the other benefits he was promised. I'm sure if you had "Retired" at the end of your signature block you wouldn't be spouting this nonsense! FYI, retirees don't need to pay more for those "exceptional benifits" because they already did through selfless service.

    • Hi Dennis,
      Sounds like you have an issue with retired commissioned officers. I only wish that I had gone to college when I was younger in order to receive the same opportunities and compensation in the form of retirement. I am retired, and if I were to, as you say "…join the rest of American society…" I would be complaining about how service men and women "get" too much. Bottom line here is, the US military retirement system is a drop in the bucket as compared to social security disability and other social programs that allow for self pity and learned helplessness. Military service is an under payed, contractual obligation that offers a promise of a future upon successful completion of that contract. Retirement is not a right, it is a privilege offered to those whom have performed in a satisfactory manner. I as well as others have held up our end of the bargain. It is unfortunate that you do not stand alone in your beliefs that retirees get too much or have it too easy.

    • Dennis,
      The benefits for veterans are a needed must. I am currently still serving in the military and can tell you that I hurt more than the average person at mu age. I still carry on and continue to keep up with the younger generation. As well I have family members that suffer from injuries during combat or just day to day activities. Yes the military vet gets good benefits and they are well deserved. Yes lets give to everyone else that just sat around screaming they deserve something rather than give to those that have put themsleves in harms way and sacrificed their time with their families for the outstanding pay and benefits. Last time I checked there are many civilians that do fulfill the same occupational postings for a lot less work and almost double the pay. Maybe you are one of them.

  23. My sister and brother veterans. Watch this congress they will reduce our benefits and will increase theirs. I don't trust our congress,they work for the special interests. Are they out to destroy the middle class of this country?

  24. Meech,

    I guess I'm just supposed to take you word for this????? Why don't you take us back to 20 Jan. 2009 when President Obama was sworn in and show me the Reports coming out of this THINK TANK and then show me new bills voted on by the Senate and the House and then signed into Law by the President that came out of this THINK TANK.

  25. If they do this to the military, they need to do it to the federal government employees and include elected political positions

    • George,

      If you don't already know, the above article is about the "Center for American Progress" a think tank that the above information is coming from. The Center for American Progress was created in 2003 as a left-leaning alternative to think tanks such as the "Heritage Foundation" and the "American Enterprise Institute."

      GEORGE, do you realize what you are saying????? You might want to get a sheet of paper and compare ours and their retirement system now.

  26. Fitz HT1 Ret says:

    only if congress gets the same treatment, which it won't, they don't even have to worry about obamacare. time for those in congress to suffer along with the rest of us. they created this big mess by free spending, now let them help pay for it

    • Fitz HT1 Ret,

      No one has to worry about Obama Care. If you like your Health Care Provider now, you can keep it or not.

      • Or get kicked out of Tricare prime if you live 40 miles from the base. But hey we aren't losing anything right Charles.

        • Idmtmedic,

          You are correct, we aren't losing anything, in that those soldiers are still on Tricare.

          • Yes you are right I get to GAIN a different provider and GAIN more bills. You see Charles military doctors are Tricare Prime providers so stop telling everyone they won't lose their provider. Unless your now giving them the authority to accept Tricare Standard. I didn't think so.

          • Idmtmedic,

            You are still confusing Tricare with The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

          • And your an idiot that can't understand basic English. I'm not the one confused. Pretty fn simple.

          • Idmtmedic,

            I'm sorry, but anyone reading your posts can see you are definitely confused, big time. Your attempting to explain Tricare which the Military uses with words the President used to explain The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

            Please go ahead and get the last word, I'm outa here.

  27. SFC J. Billings, Ret says:

    Three-three in the military and I have never seen such hatred for people like us. We enlisted to fight and guard for this great country and was promised some rewards for this life, if we lived thru it all. Now the punks in Congress want to change in the middle of the stream. We should be able to put an M16 on each one of their lously shoulders and haul their ass to Afgan, on the front lines.

  28. Idmtmedic,

    Yes there is, and they have been doing this for years now, and it is called the Quadrennial Review of Military Compensation, and the last one done, was on June 2012. Now, you can say anything you wish, but the facts are what they are.

    Just remember Idmtmedic, you can have your own opinions, but not your own FACTS.

  29. The correct name is stink tank because they are full of sht

  30. IIiFF f this becomes law, then forget ETHEN FORGET both enlistees and reinlistments. Also, no on e would volunteer in future wars.nter text right here!

  31. What happens to a widow who uses TriCare ? …

    • if your outside the 40 mile cap then your getting screwed like the rest of us..

    • Once again we get screwed by our Government. This is not the treatment they promised our husbands that they would give us. More broken promises Blueeyes, more broken promises.

  32. Stand by, they have been doing this to state employees across the country with much pain and suffering was wondering when the feds would jump the bandwagon

  33. Thanks for all the people that voted for Obama…more changes is coming…he don't care about Americans and America. MAY GOD BLESS THE USA.

    • yep,way to go! Politicians should be considered the "evil 1%" and have to pay the tab for their out of control and wasteful spending. But no, We the People carry their water and bear the weight while they take and take, giving the majority of what they don't keep to the folks who just love free stuff. Remember "Obama money"? Meanwhile our military serve….

      Has anyone considered that the end goal is to weaken our military and this latest brainstorm will surely, discourage enlistment. I think its all part of the scheme to build a socialist society. Its always easier to tear down what you believe is old and useless and start from scratch to build what you want. Just look at how this administration has pitted Americans against Americans and continued to chip away at the fabric of our democracy. The power the liberals want can only be achieved by making the country weak. Very disturbing!

  34. roberta castile says:

    what happens if your a widow who wants to move near her kids before she dies,will i still have tricare for life if i can find a dr?im 78 years old,cant sell house now,very alarmihg what is happenihg,and scared.

    • Roberta, the best thing would be to call Tricare and find out what your options are. Hopefully you get some good advice. If not then try calling your congressman and hope he or she is aware of how Tricare works.
      Good luck and I hope you find some good answers.

    • If you read above, you will be in the same boat as those under 65 on possible increases in out of pocket costs. This was hiddened so no one could see and then the blame game would start toward the other party. Like the Medic said, call Tricare to get the best word.

  35. RET Msgt Ohio says:

    THIS THINK TANK COMMUNIST GROUP MUST BE ESCORTED RIGHT OUT OF THIS COUNTRY!!!!!!
    WE AS VET'S THAT GAVE MORE YEARS IN A UNIFORM THEN SOME OF YOU HAVE BEEN OFF THE NIPPLE PROTECTED YOU AND YOU THAT NEVER WORE A UNIFORM OR FACE A WAR TORN AREA OVER SEA'S NEED A REALITY CHECK! sEND ALL YOU OVE TO AFGANISTAN AND LET THEM BE SHOT AT AND BLOWED APART LIKE SOME OF FELLOW SOLDIERS HAVE FACED FOR YOU!

    AMERICANS NEED TO STOP THESE GROUPS FROM EVEN PUTTING THIS KIND OF TRASH OUT!

    RET MSGT OF THE AIR FORCE AFTER 28 YEARS!

  36. Big Bang DBT says:

    Check out Big Bang DBT's new song dedicated to our U.S. Troops and the re-election of President Obama. This song has generated a nation wide buzz

    Here is a link to the new song – http://limelinx.com/e1gbo
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  37. S Smith LT USCG Ret. says:

    Wonder how many former military are employed by the Center for American Progress? If you haven't walked the walk then you shouldn't have any input.
    I'm sure my two son's, one a Marine wounded in Iraq the other a currently serving Air Force pilot, would love to see their benefits cut.

    • EWCS USN Ret. says:

      I would suggest that none of the people in the CAP are retirees. Some of them may be former military that did not, or could not, handle the military or the military could not handle them.

      Freedom isn't free and those that gave a good portion of their life to maintain freedom should not be cast aside.

  38. David L. Hintzke says:

    The personnel at CAP are socialist, propgressive activists who apparently
    do not appreciate the sacrifices of retired career military persons who now are
    dependent on the benefits wihch they have earned. I would hope that the
    DOD and Congress will put a stop to this CAP foolishness. I am an 83 year-old,
    STGCS USN retired.

  39. Roger Walston says:

    Idon't understand why the Politicians aren't included in paying anything, I beleive they are the guilty ones, look at their retirement pay, their spending tons of money in grants to be re-elected, working loo days a year, scheluding
    trips so they get a free vacation overseas. Why isn't the IOU's called in?
    I retired with 20 years, today I have so many things wrong with me that I spend so much time with Dr.s visits, I'm real close to 81 years old. I served in the Korean and the Vietnam Conflicts. It took 30 or more before I could draw
    my retirement because I was drawing service connected disabilities.They say I have free Gov. insurance, I pay $196.00 a month for my wife and myself for Medicare. TFL pays a little that left.

  40. I agree with Roger Waldon. The politicians need to live on social security and have the same medicare that we have. And they should be limited to only 2 terms like the president. Washington should not be a career.

    • maria,

      Believe it or not, they do pay into Social Security and Medicare just like we do and like us, they too live off their Social Security and their pension as we do, and like us, they also use their Medicare and their other Insurance just like we do.

      As far as term limits go for Congressmen all that would take is a Constitutional Amendment.

    • Now, you are talking what I been thinking over the past 5 years or so. That one flaw in our government system that allow congressional members the opportunity to stay a life time if re-elected.

  41. I have been retired since1991 with a service connected disability. My wife and I are on tricare prime. Sinced retirement both my wife and I have recieved additional major medical problems which have been life changiing. These medical problems requiring us to see doctor's and get med's refilled. I don't know how we can pay more ! It's been hard to pay all the co pay's and make it to the end of the month. When I went to Walmart the other day most people checking out were using some sort of Gov, assistance, What happened to us in the U.S A, Veterans deserve to be taken care of first! WE earned it; people who haven't served needs to be the first one':s to get in line. Second, polititions who have been in office for overfour years should be held accountable for this debt our nation is in. I am sorry if I mispelled allot of words in this post; it is due to all the pain meds i'm on. God Bless the U.S.A.

  42. If retired military life is so outstanding, then why do less than 1% of our entire population wear the uniform, and out of that 1 % who serve, only 17% out of the 1% ever reach 20 plus for retirement. The last 11 years have been a cake walk lol. Some members have 7-10 combat tours. Piece of cake. Come on people be for real.

    • Unless there is a full-out draft implemented again, there is a cap on the amount needed to serve. So, there is where some of your percentage numbers come from. It's just like any other company — it only needs so many to do the job. Some of us made a career to retirement because we liked enough aspects to want to stay. Deployments, terrible hours, and adhering to certain standards is not easy — it takes a lot of discipline. Not everyone is accepted to reinlist or wants to. I am proud to be part of this great community of active duty and veterans. I believe that police and firefighters feel much the same way. It's one of the most unique and fulfilling career options available. Ok, so this is my view of "being real."

  43. ? How much are the elected going to give of their benifits?

  44. Mave S. Fla. says:

    I am the caregiver of a Vetran – Navy. 4 years active 21 ready reaserve We went to The Vetrans Hospital 10 Years ago and they took care of my Husband. But now we are being challenged to show all the money we may or may not have. I am the the person who does every thing for him as he has reached 72 and life is getting harder, with Parkinsons. and Cancer.
    more difficult every day. When we visit the VA. we are treated with coursty, but
    the indication is that they are reviewing each and every ones file, so they can make room for others. He was and still is very proud to have served his country. What I have just read today I am so upset . Those people should be teated the same as the past serviceman will soon be treated. Thank you all for your service

  45. The first thing I noticed on this report was that CAP was misspelled. The "R" was omitted in "CAP". The second thing missing was the date to reinstate the DRAFT to give the people who write this CAP (again misspelled) a chance to serve in combat. We should demand that the other 90% have a chance to serve our wonderful, free country that they live in and do nothing in return for it. Anyone that can vote benefit cuts or sits in their plush office and recommends cuts for those that serve or have served should first serve 3 months walking point in a combat zone followed by 3 months being taken care of or taking care of the military in the VA hospital system.

  46. Pete estrada says:

    Did you Vote in last election. Those thst voted for the current president .should and will get all they deserve.If you did not vote this is just a small part of what's comming

  47. Charles Bryant? Take a new name?????? Why no comments? Career blogger stating no CUTS? Where you at Charles. Protecting your post count? Fn loser. Comment on all the cuts. CUTS to benefits. Come out Charles. Waaaaaaiiiiting. If anybody is not familiar, he claims we are all whiners, complainers, and liars. Make sure you check out his site and his opinions should he ever posts again….

  48. My response to this article – sent to Congress & WH… I expect the black SUV's to be parked outside my house within a week:

     Why don't you disrespectful, arrogant failures take the cuts in your pay and benefits FIRST? You are not doing YOUR JOB…$16 Trillion in debt, no budget in nearly 4 years, argue and pontificate like school children and accomplish NOTHING. The military comes first, and you are suppose to have their back (hopefully NOT like Benghazi) and to even consider their benefits to be excessive or over-rated is criminal on your part. They have done EVERYTHING asked of them, along with their families, and you have failed the American people continuously for the last 6 years. Look in the mirror and really, really think about who has actually DONE THEIR JOB and EARNED what they are being paid (not even close to enough) and be honest with yourself and your constituents about where the cuts should be made…what a pathetic example of accountability and 'FAIRNESS'.
    If this happens, you should be embarrassed and ashamed of yourselves. Do the right thing and forego your pay and benefits package until at some point you can honestly say you have done your job.

    • George R. Cline MSG says:

      You are so right after only one term in office they get full salary and benefits, that should be where the cuts are made, work for 20-30 years then get retirement.GRC

    • Right on JC!! I couldn't agree with you more. I only regret not having composed this myself and sent it to my democratic reps. If you would allow me to I'd like to do just that.
      Gary
      Colorado

    • JC, very well said. What is the value of a seasoned veteran aka E-6, E-7-vs the accountant O1, O2 on the battlefield? The value is unmeasurable until the seasoned vet is no longer in charge of lives and transitions to civilian life. The accountants value after service increases yet the seasoned vet decreases. Of course this relates to education. My point? Education is immeasurable but so is experience. Pay is relative to the situation and war is relative to experience. Combine both and you get a professional, dedicated soldier that works together with educated leadership, and an experienced soldier. If you decrease benefits or pay for either the mission suffers and by extension the quality of recruits and lives.

    • Its tough being sane in an insane world. Dad, A WWII vet, said no one understood a soldier unless they were one. I retired from military uniform where covering each others back was truly understood. Believe me most on the DC level have no such concept OR they would never pass laws that hit us while they exempt themselves out….no President or Congress person will have to live under ObamaCare…again they opted out.

  49. It will never change. Our elected leaders in Washington will always go for the easy target (the military). Why ? Because the know that true Americans will do whats best for their country. We (retired military) all know that we more then earned what was promised to us with our service. What this goverment is trying to do to us is wrong. Our nation is broken and may never recover this distrubes me much more the haveing another promise broken. It sickens me to think of all I gave to my country my have been wasted. Times have changed and people in power know who to use this to fufill their agenda.

  50. My husband and I were loyal, hard working, did what we promised, pro military. I never thought we'd have to fight for promised benefits (from the 50's), and even for the money taken from my paid up annuity. And needed medical care. How depressing.

  51. If our elected officials had to live on military or retirement pay, they would not last very long!!! My deceased husband served 21years suffering from PTSD after Vietnam and the the debilitating effects of Agent Orange for which we had to fight 5 years to obtain any benefits. The man suffered terribly before he died 3 years ago. I live on a very small annuity from his other work and depend on tricare to pay for my numerous medications for heart disease and other illnesses. My husband died thinking I would be taken care of with Medicare and Tricare for Life.
    Little did he know that promises by our government were made to be broken. It stinks.

  52. I appreciate all veterans who ever served this country, including my father, husband, and 2 sons (one active duty, one vet). People serve out of a sense of selflessness, as well as the good jobs and training available through the military. But let's face it: who, in their right mind, would volunteer to enlist in the military and give up their own freedoms without the promise of certain benefits? Not too many people. I say give up their own freedoms, because i have witnessed from the perspective of a daughter, wife, and mother that military members don't have the same freedoms regular civilians have on a job. If I get mad and want to quit my job tomorrow, that's an option for me (though a stupid one), but it is my choice to make. Not so with the armed forces: you signed on the dotted line, and you will do as you are told until that contractual period ends. I have always had the highest respect for the military and a sincere belief that armed forces are essential for our freedom, but I no longer encourage young people to join the military. I am now a supporter of the draft.

    • Perfectly said!!!!!!! No way in hell my kids will join the 401k retirement plan or pay verses civilian discussion. You want civilian wages and benefits then by all means pay a soldier minimum wage and no retirement until 60. You get what you pay for. Unless a world war happens it isn't feasible because our "POLICE ACTIONS" and not war have gotten around that. Enticing young teenagers to join is for the benefits and pay. Military is good at throwing money to retain personnel but not so good for retirement. The result is lower level journeymen and no career personnel. If you want mediocre then that is what you get. Or best yet, throw money at them, or lower the standards. The deployments don't change nor do the responsibilities. Remember that the military doesn't set the tempo, nor the humanitarian assistance, or police actions but pays the price in lives for those decisions. Good leaders in the military cannot be PAID for, only experience will do that, but pay and experience will get you a professional soldier that leads from a comfortable salary that is in relation to the sacrifice. Comfortable you say? Mmmmmm

  53. Time to end these legacy pension costs once and for all. To those in the military, I salute your hard-work and dedication. Please understand, however, that you cannot expect to get a handout for life based on a mere 20 years of work. Keep up the good work…. I will be doing so as well. God Bless the USA!

    • Great, then don't expect service members to serve twenty years and the next "police action" will be taken care of by you. As someone else so aptly stated, if you cant't afford veterans then stop making them. Just what do you feel keeps veterans in the service? Better yet, why don't you lead the civilian defense service in the future. You can handle, Korea, Syria, terrorists, Somalia, Iran? Apparently defending our interests are done by freeloaders. So you keep up the good work on your couch.

      • To the comment regarding taking handouts. We have worked, sacraficed family and died for this so called:hand out". We have not sat unemployed on our butts for our adult life!!!!

    • Only make that statement if you've served. Your statement ws not a salute, but a slap in the face ….

    • why dont you say that to a president or senator who takes a retirement for life after serving 4 to 8 years….their retirement is way more than the average veteran retiree…

    • riley burdine jr says:

      really a mere 20 years of work, you join the military, then after 20 years, decide if its a mere 20 years, and dont tell me your in the military or that you served, because you didnt

    • You get your butt in the Viet Nam Jungle and do missions in North Viet Nam, if you haven't been there shut your mouth. You have YOUR government spray you with Agent Orange, the "handout" is a pension earned just like any other company in civilian life. You don't salute… you spit on us like your mom and dad did 46 years ago!

    • militarymom says:

      apparently it hasn't crossed your mind that by the time retirees retire, they have spent most of their active adult years in service of defending you and others. Personally, I think all of this CUTTING benefits for retirees is a bunch of hogwash. By the time veterans have spent 20+ years in the military they are old enough that outside insurance is ridiculously high and most insurances won't cover their issues or the cost of dependent issues. Acekid, I really hope and pray that you and people like you are not going to be running this country for long, we need to go back to the days of respecting the men and women that put their lives and the lives of their families in the way of idiots and terrorists trying to ruin what little bit of the freedom we have left.

    • Hey Numbnuts…20 years of full time on call deploy when we tell you to or get thrown in jail. Is worse than working 60 years at your lame civilian worthless job. do something with your life to make a difference in the World. Oh yeah, try getting shot at or dodging IED while at work and see if it stresses you out worse than a cup of cold coffee…It is people like you that put a new meaning in the word Stupid..

    • Taxpayer Fed Up! says:

      Let's also cut Congress et al government jobs that receive lifetime pensions and their own special health care insurance. (Why are Congress and the president and his family too good for Obamacare?). These military men and women put their lives on the line for our freedom, shuffled their families from base to base, country to country, and dedicated themselves to serving America. Cut Welfare first, cut social security disability, but don't cut military benefits that were promised to them.

    • Warren Carter says:

      Why don't you kiss it where the sunshine don't set. Did you serve in a time wheen a war going on? I bet not .

      /

    • R. Rod TSgt RET says:

      When you have served this country then you have earned the right to make such a comment. Just remember it's because of the people that have served this country that you even have a right to speak your mind. You were probably one of those that was getting drunk and doing drugs while we, the soldiers, sailors and airmen were busting our asses 24/7 where ever we were sent. Spending cuts need to start with "civilian" government first.

    • acekids:
      handout for life?? you must be thinking of walfare recipients looking for handouts that were never earned!!!

    • Handout my butt!!!!!!

    • They could cut the fed budget in HALF if they cut all waste, fraud, and abuse. Instead the up-fund and expand all the garbage goldfish-sex-lives studies every year and then try to screw mil retirees and SS recipients.

      Most jobs don't send you to some dust-infested hellhole for six to 14 months where you're likely to get blown up or severely traumatized.

      And then send you back one or eight times.

      20 years, that's been the deal for decades and it needs to remain the deal.

      It's not a handout, it's an EARNED PENSION. Go find yourself a recruiter.

    • SMSgt28yrs says:

      How many years of service do you have? If it's none then you dont have a clue!!!! Visit a VA facility for a day, then tell me they dont deserve everything they get…and then some.

    • J's king says:

      Go back to flipping your burgers aceskid, I would like fries with that as well. When you serve overseas and spend 20+ years in a job with extreme hazards and could go to jail for not doing what you are told, then you can talk. The zit cream is on isle 5 by the way. Handout my butt…I got your handout right here!

  54. Patriot in Georgia says:

    The Center for American Progress is not a patriotic organization. Think leftist and anti-American. And if you really care, take time to learn who runs it and what they really stand for. They are in the White House, the cabinet, the Senate, special commisssions, and the Democratic party. 'Nuf said.

  55. DON'T PANIC: THE CENTER FOR AMERICAN PROGRESS IS A LIBERAL THINK TANK THAT WOULD LOVE TO SEE A NEUTERED MILITARY WITH FEW BENEFITS FOR SERVICE MEMBERS. HOPEFULLY ANY OF IT'S PROGRESSIVE IDEAS WILL BE REJECTED BY REPUBLICAN AND DEMOCRAT LAWMAKERS WHO UNDERSTAND HOW DAMAGING THESE CHANGES WOULD BE TO OUR NATIONAL DEFENSE AND OUR OBLIGATIONS TO OUR MEN AND WOMEN IN UNIFORM.

  56. I spent 20 years in service, been through every 3rd world shithole out there. Spent what amounted to years separated from my wife and kids who eventually decided she couldn't handle my absences and left. I lost a lot serving my country so little #$%^%$ like you can sit on your couch playing Xbox and complain how we live off the fat of the land. I could have got out of the service and made much more money and still had my family, but I didn't serve for 20 years to get rich. I did it because I Love my Country and want my children and their children to have the Freedoms enacted by the Constitution and The Bill of Rights. You have those protections because we protected them for you. You better wake up son before it's too late.

  57. Why? Why? Why?
    Why mess with Military Veteran Benefits? Ever!
    If you are one of the people involved in affecting decreasing or eliminating Military Benefits, you should see what it is like to serve on Active Duty for 20 to 30 years, and what it does to your Physical & Mental Health AND your entire family!
    Bottom Line!

    • Not according to a few on here. Military is like any other job. Your on salary. Amazing isn't it. Check that contract again. Ohhhhhhh wait REALLLLLY read that contract. What are your benefits? Says it right there. Right? Line 6? Line 8? Ahhhhhh dam well not really. See the next line………………………………..SEE THAT ONE………….the CONTRACT can change at any time REGARDLESS of what our contract says..

  58. I hardly used military retirement benefits, like many, until I past 65 years old and now need them. Why doesn't Congress try to retire on our "generous" benefits and see just how generous they actually are! They should note that THEY,not us, are directly responsible for America's economic and world decline. How much are they going to cut their retirement and medical benefits? We don't see expensive "think tanks" issuing reports on congressional benefits…do we! We need to not reelect one incumbent.

  59. Dennis…….how many people actually live on $1500 a month?

  60. Look! We are at a crossroads where pensions and healthcare for life are destroying the private and government industry. Bottom line it is not sustainable. Someone needs to move from a defined benefit model to a defined contribution model. Veterans need to take a more proactive stance in their healthcare. Why does a veteran who does not smoke, eats right and watches their weight, have to pay for the fat guy, smoker and fast food kings health problems. I drink beer, I have high cholesterol, I don't exercise like I use to, I need to pay more for my health insurance. I should be rewarded for good behavior, not bad behavior.
    Now I will take a stab at all those in Washington. Ask them to use our Veteran services and Tricare plans. Then see how those hammerheads vote. Rise up veterans and let your voices be heard.

  61. There is nothing wrong with the retirement plan or the supposed medical coverage for an American that dedicates their youth in defense of this Nation. There are plenty of Corporations and Billionaires making trillions from the sacrifices made by service men and women. Is greed that strong a force that America will turn it's back on the folks sent into harms way on her behalf ?

    Pathetic ! If we as the working class don't demand preservation of what was offered at the time of entrance into service now there will be continuous flow of BOHICA's to follow !!!!

    • AMEN TO COMMON SENSE!!!

    • Jim Hurley says:

      CUDOS , Finally someone that has the " Stones "" to say what they think . All you Vet's out there rtha voted for the magnamous George Bush , ( the Son ) can thank him for your benefits taking a hike . He say's that no one deserves that kuind of medical , un less of course it he was the ""President ":" . Thank him all of you that have lost every healthcare benefit that was ""Promised "" at time of enlistment . I sure as hell do . Lst time I went to the Veterans for som e ""advice "" I was given three medication tablets , ""Aspirin ":" and a month lated received a demand letter for the $28.00 I owe them . This after 23 years of service and dedication . Thanks Ex president Bush , I hope you got what you aimed for , By the way , you can't serve three terms in office . And did you ever learn to fly that f-86 ""Korea vintage "" jet . Oh tha's right , you wrer needed in the politicians line when qualification day came . Have a grand life , I am ,

  62. I joined the Army when I was 17 (1970), and retired in 1997. One of the first things I was promised back in 1970 was medical care for life. They lied. I should have known when at the retirement phsyical the Doc kept saying "Yeah…right" when I told him which parts did not work well…while he made plans the whole time to go to lunch with the nurse. They lied.

  63. Terry Smith says:

    It is a fact that the last several years worth of military medical needs has increased dramatically and placed a much bigger burden on the system, but would our government turn its back on all those who have served in defense of our country?
    Please 1st look at the benefits accrued by members of congress…representatives and senators receive far more in benefits than military personnel and they don't have to serve a minimum of 20 years, nor is it anywhere close to arduous duty.
    Then take a look at what union members receive when they retire…talk about breaking the back of industry. And a person working on the automotive assembly line doesn't come close to the arduous duty of a military member.

    I don't mind paying a larger amount for my retired military healthcare if it helps the country recover, but lets start with our good people in congress first. Lead the way…

  64. WHY??? It does no good to make complaints that make sense, to politicians
    that could care less as long as their benefits are not cut back. Most of them don't even have a son or daughter who will sacrifice in the military. They better start building ROBOTS to go along with the DRONES, because no human in their right mind will serve or sacrifice. Start up the DRAFT again, and force men and women to serve and sacrafice for these selfish primadona POLITICIANS.

  65. Think tank? Over rated people doing nothing productive but making comments they know nothing about. I bet it pays well.

  66. CDM USAF RET says:

    I am 42 years old. I can barely walk, I have severe arthritis in my knees and shoulders. I am disappointed in this secdef and president for proposing these drastic cuts. Its so easy to pick on the veterans, why not look elsewhere for defense costs. There is so much waste in defense contractors and programs. Don't take from us, who sacrificed their best years and youth for the good of the country. Look elsewhere.

  67. Heres the problem, when these troops were in the recruiters office. They were told… After 20 + 1/2 base pay for life. an Medical. My father put in 28 Years started in 1943. My brother did 21 ROTC.. Both retired but even they have had to pay for co-pays etc.. Now if the Govt wants to change the rules you Start as of TODAY>. Due notice NEW RECRUITS> and good luck with retention or getting volunteers.

  68. I guess noting that comes out anymore surprises me after getting the shaft on promised lifetime healthcare for a careerist went away. I expect that eventually anything that used to help keep a person in the military will evaporate. No other career civilian or otherwise in this country other than the military exposes it's participants to the things military life does. Eventually the flag that covers the coffins will be charged for as well as the free VA hole in the ground to be placed in. Once everything is gone what will they use to keep folks career and volunteer to fight the wars around the world. Guess the draft may have to make a comeback!

  69. Ted Newton says:

    Congressmen who supports any cuts to Tricare for older retirees should be kicked out of office.

  70. Panetta says "Everything should be on the table." Does that mean is going to amputate both of his legs before he eliminates pay and and benefits those who did just that?

  71. Norma chapman says:

    Name one civilian job that requires you to be on call 24/7 365 days a yr. FYI 30 days vacation includes any holidays/weekends during that period count as leave days against those 30 days leave. You also had to call or come in to check out on leave. if you called they wanted a local number to call back just to make sure you didnt leave the area before your leave started. If you wanted to go more then 150 miles from your duty station for a long weekend you needed the commands permission. If you are sick you can't call in you needed to get up go to sick call with all the others plucking their guts out from the flu so that a dr could write you a note and put you on bed rest. luckily when I got out I got a job right away because I was not eligible for unemployment since I had a job but did not want to reenlist unlike my civilian counterpart who got fired and was receiving it because the employer didn't object.

  72. Carl Bundesen says:

    "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants."
    Thomas Jefferson
    It is not about a hand out. This was a LEGAL promise by our government. A signed document, a CONTRACT, stating if you do this, you earn this, for this long, starting on this date. For them to change that for new enlisties is stupid, but at least those coming in have a choice based on todays facts. For them to change it for those who have already made the deal and paid the dues is ILEGAL. It is fraud. It is out right theft. We allow congress to breach this contract while retaining thier own cushy retirement and medical plans then where does it stop. Taxation without representation is alive in America! Dont tread on me, the time is now! "
    The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants."

    Thomas Jefferson

  73. carl bundesen says:

    go ahead and put into your companies 401K for 10, 15, 20 years with the promise that it will pay out X ammount at 65. Only to have the bank system controlling it say 20 years in that it cost to much to pay up and due to the econimy and the CEO needing more slush fund money your 401 K has to wait untill you are 78, oh but it will be a larger pay out at that time. IF YOU MAKE IT>

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