Ryan-Murray Budget Deal Could Hurt Retirees

December 11, 2013 | Terry Howell

Budget Update (12/12/2013): The Ryan-Murray Budget was passed by the House.

The latest budget deal crafted by Rep. Paul Ryan and Sen. Patty Murray is being celebrated as a bipartisan agreement that would help avoid another round of government closures and fiscal cliff threats. But what is not being widely reported – except by Tom Philpott - is that the budget deal will have a long-term impact on the value of the military retirement.

The budget deal calls for cutting the annual retirement cost of living adjustment for working age retirees (under age 62) by one full percentage point – setting the rate at one percent below the actual Consumer Price Index – the measure of inflation used to determine Social Security and VA program adjustments each year.

Tom Philpott reports that the cumulative effect would be to cut the lifetime value of military retirement by roughly $83,000 for a typical enlisted member who retires at age 40 after 20 years’ service.  The typical officer retiring at age 42 after 20 would lose about $124,000.

Read Tom Philpott’s Military Update article on Military.com.

The battle to save full retirement COLA is on.

As the co-chair of the Military Coalition, Col. Mike Hayden (Director of Government Relations for Military Officers Association of America) is leading a call to stop this action. Hayden points out that this deal essentially reneges on the Congressional and the White House promises to protect current retirees from any major changes to the retirement benefit.

(See MOAA’s official response below)

Where do you stand? Let your elected officials know how you feel about capping retiree COLA at 1 percent below inflation.

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MOAA Warns Budget Deal Penalizes Current and Future  Military Members with over 20 Years of Service

Military Officers Association of America (MOAA) said the one percent annual reduction to uniformed service retired pay Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) could have disastrous unintended consequences.  For those who retire at the 20 year point in their career, it will result in reducing retired pay by nearly 20 percent between the age at retirement and 62.

“A 20 percent reduction in retired pay and survivor benefit values is a very substantial cut in military career benefits and does not represent good faith to our men and women in uniform,” MOAA President Vice Adm Norb Ryan said.
About one percent of the nation’s population is currently serving, but they bear 100 percent of the responsibility for our national security requirements. Retirement benefits have been earned through 20 or more years of arduous military service and sacrifice.”

Furthermore, Congress mandated the Military Retirement and Modernization Commission (MCRMC) in the FY 2013 National Defense Authorization Act and wisely removed the “BRAC-like”, fast-tracking rule so appropriate committees would appropriately study recommendations that could significantly impact retention and readiness.  The MCRMC recommendations are supposed to honor commitments made to military personnel by their leadership and have not yet been provided.

“This proposal actually eliminates the appropriate assessment process and does not take long-term readiness and retention outcomes into account,” Ryan said.  “A deadline will have been met, but at a terrible price for our existing force and retirees.

“Currently serving members look at how they, their families, retirees, and survivors have been treated when making career choices.  If Congress arbitrarily cuts the retirement benefit for those who have served their country for over 20 years, there could be an unintended impact on uniformed service career retention, and ultimately, national security,” Ryan stated.

About MOAA:
Military Officers Association of America (MOAA) is the nation’s largest officers association with more than 380,000 members from every branch of service, including active duty, retired, National Guard, Reserve, and former officers and their families and survivors. For more information, visit www.moaa.org or www.voicesfortroops.org/.

 

Comments

  1. Really? I mean, REALLY? COLA CUTS for Retired Military? WTH are you thinking?
    You didn't even have the decency to run this through any of the Military boards/committees. What an obscene way to treat your Retired Military.

    What's next? Why even have Military boards/committees if you are going to just ignore them and do this kind of crap!

    Every one of you who votes for this should have to stand before some of these Retired Military folks and tell them why you did this instead of lowering your pay and increasing the amounts you pay for insurance.

    I hope every single one of you are run out of town and lose your next election.

    But, hey! Who better to pay for the deficit but the Retired Military. Heck, even with our sacrifices and COLA cuts, THIS WONT PAY THE 20 BILLION you jerks just lost for going on strike for ten days.

    Enjoy you Christmas vacation while Retired Military folks worry about which bill to pay with the paltry checks we get already.

    • ADCS (AW) RET 23YRS says:
    • ADCS (AW) RET 23YRS says:
    • ADCS (AW) RET 23YRS says:
    • I understand your frustrations and concerns. I am a retired Marine of 20+ years service. I don't agree with a lot of these cuts either, however, there is a time and place to vent your concerns and frustrations. This venue is not one of them. If you desire to vent your concerns, you should contact your Congressman and/or Senator in your area. Furthermore, if you are worried about this proposed cut, think about our veterans who are returning home with little to no benefits. Our current veterans need benefits that you and I already receive. Think about the veterans who have TBI, missing limbs PTSD, etc. If you are retired from the military, at least you are getting your retirement pay. What are our younger vets getting? Bottom line is get a grip and be satisfied for what you do have.

      • YNCM retired says:
      • richard sweeney says:

        It was promiced to them and the frigging idiots in charge dont or wont cut there pay to help out and they dont need there pay check!!!!

      • Mike Shults says:

        If the government can write a law and take away my benefits they will take away the benefits of us all. I have contacted both my Congressmen and Senator but have had no responses. The guys you talk about who have no benefits do have benefits and care it my not be the greatest but they do have service and care. Your statement is completely wrong. The Us is not that grate in taking care of its on but there is a lot that the government dose to help it Vets to get back in life after the military.

      • @Marvin: Bull. This is EXACTLY THE VENUE TO VOICE AND VENT… AS WELL AS ANY OTHER ONLINE SITES WHERE THE COCKROACH IN OFFICE, RAND, MURRAY, AND ANY OTHERS ARE EXPOSED.

    • iraqisandman says:

      I think I heard that this action will save 6 billion over the next whatever. The fed just reduced pumping 85 Billion per month into the stock market to 75 Billion per month. That should cover it right?

    • LTC Active Duty says:

      Senior DoD folks want this to happen, which is wrong. They been stating that personnel is costing them too much I do not trust them anymore.

      • LTC, thanks for your comment and I agree that trying to resolve this mess on the backs of Retirees is beyond wrong. With few notable exceptions over the years, I haven't ever trusted any of the 'Senior DoD folks' who have been in power that isn't in THEIR best interest.

    • Even if they lose the next election their retirement is set. All they have to do is serve one term in office and they get the FULL retirement, and benefits that include their and spouse medical for LIFE. Take a look at what they gave themselves for a cost of living raise done every year on their last working day of the year and usually at midnight so no one knows what is going on.

  2. Any change in military retirement rates, including COLAs, should only apply to people who enter the military AFTER the change is enacted.

    • Absolutely. Where's the due process here? It's a loser for congress (again). Speak up, write congress and have your friends write congress. Thank you Clifton!

  3. Norm Phillips says:

    Let them all know how you feel with YOUR VOTE in next elections!!!

    • I truly believe they have the elections rigged after the re-elect of Obama. I served 2 years Army and 22 years Air Force. I have 13 tours in the Middle East under my belt and I know just a little bit about self-sacrifice even though I have friends who sacrificed everything who no longer have a voice and are not here today. I don't like it but "determined by the V.A. I'm service connected disabled at 80% and simply have no fight left. I struggle to get to the job I hold now every morning. Most mornings I have to push my legs out of bed because I'm in so much pain I can't move them. Not looking for pity because I have brothers and sisters much worse off than myself. I'm just one veteran and feel I truly have no voice. I wish I could submit a bill to cut budgets ahead of any veteran cuts! I would start with 555 members that we "supposedly elected" and all know so very well. Does anyone else see the double standard here? I love this country and want nothing but the best for us all. How do we collectively pull things back together with the political turmoil and abuse that just continues?

  4. Kenneth Ishmael says:

    Why can't Paul Ryan take a cut in his pay along with all the Senators and Congressman who think this is a good idea. Lets take there cola away from them and see how they like it. This does not affect me as I am over 62 but it does affect three of my sons who served in the armed forces for twenty years.

  5. Karen Burns says:

    I am so tired of them going after the retires pay and benefits every time. I guess they don't want anyone to make a career of the military anymore. My husband is a retired Navy Chief. Why don't they ever suggest cutting their pay and benefits. That is what needs to be done.

  6. Just in case no one knew, Rep Paul Ryan is not the military persons friend! He is a person that I would not vote for if he was the last person on earth to run!! He should not even be in the position he is in now ! My suggestion is he be voted out of his office as soon as he runs again! He is absolutely out to cut the militaries money in any way he can. Also Social Security is on his cut list! He is a true tea partier, he feels that everyone should be able to save and invest so the government does not have to subsidize by paying Social Security or Military Retirement Pay even though you have paid into in one way or another all of your working life! Get him out, out, out of his office!!!!!!!!!!

  7. So that's how you get around "grandfathering" the retirees? Interesting how that works out. Mmmmm wonder what's next? Commissaries closing? Base hospitals closing and converting to clinics? Eliminate Tricare Prime because of distance? TRYING to increase Tricare fees with surpluses? They apparently can't just cut our "reduced pay for reduced service" that would cause too much of an uproar. Better to chip away and increase fees until or check is returned right back to the government!

  8. GreySailor says:

    No cut in Social Security COLA, just military retirement COLAs. And the money is used to boost spending, not reduce the deficit. Some deal for those who went in harm's way.

  9. Eric galant says:
  10. I read on Air Force Times that's covering this same story that "Disability retirees would not have their COLAs reduced." That is all that they printed on that subject.

    So what about those mil retirees below age 62 that have since been rated IU or Housebound/A&A by the VA that can't work? Will they have their military pension COLA reduced too? This would be utter BS because the point of this bill is to lower the COLA for those mil retirees that are below 62 and CAN work. Just because this group of folks weren't medically retired from the service doesn't mean that they are able to work if they have been VA rated IU or Housebound SMC-S or A&A SMC-L

    • They have since removed this provision or it wasn't there to begin with. Disability retirees get the same 1% haircut as the rest

  11. Michael Hendee, SFC USArmy, Retired says:

    Paul, who do you think you are? And how can you sleep at night.
    Oh, that’s right, you can sleep peacefully each night. Because all the men and women who served our Nation fought for your freedom. Think about it Paul. If not for our Professional Military you just might not be enjoying the life you have now. I can’t believe you haven’t been fired for your thoughtless proposal. Oh that’s right. We can fire you. Wait until the next election. A message for you Paul and all other like minded individuals. You can beat a dog only so many times, before that dog does one of two things. A beaten dog will either cut and run or turn and fight. Oh yah, I’ve never known any of our Service Members to cut and run.

  12. Donna Balius says:

    It's disgusting how they want to use then abuse our military. Goodbye Paul Ryan and Patty Murray, you won't be re-elected.

  13. Please change the title of this article's headline from "could" to "WILL hurt retirees". You are doing us military vets a disservice by saying it "could" only hurt us. It absolutely positively WILL hurt us…

  14. The point that's also missed is the change in understanding of what the military retirement means. To equate it with a civilian job is wrong. I'm 60. After decades jumping from airplanes, being far too close to too many explosions, and seeing traumatic events up close and personal, I'm thankful I could quit when I did. It is definitely a young man's/woman's game. Now, they apply this misinformed and twisted label of 'non-working' to me. They use it like I was a welfare hog. That's just wrong and they act like no one should think twice about it.

  15. and only 17 comments and two are mine. Disgraceful. no wonder why congress has such an easy time reducing our benefits. Because the average mil retiree doesn't give a d*amn

  16. Kimberly Ellis says:

    Mr Paul says that the military is given a lucriative package for 20 yrs of service… Less than half of base salary. Mr Paul Ryan gets a full salary for the rest of his life for 5 years of service…WOW ! He did not mention any cut to his FULL 5 year retirement!

    • Yeah they need to take his retirement completely.

    • Mr Ryan does NOTget "…….a full salary for the rest of his life for 5 years of service….." When he is 62 and had 5 years service he gets a pension rated upon his top three years of salary; in other words, a member of the House of Represenatives must complete 3 terms before he or she will be eligible for any pension at all. Google it.

      • Dave Granquist says:

        Mr Ryan would be eligible for retirement after 6 years of "service" – you are right about the # of terms, but his term is only 2 years long — I REALLY think that is a fair trade, don't you? We do 20 to get our retirement at 50% (a lot of time spent away from friends and family) and they do 6 years for the retirement – yeah, I would take THAT deal ANY DAMN DAY!! They are all a bunch of thieves so it don't matter who you are talking about as far as "Congress" is concerned!

    • I agree, That's a great place to start. Congress should have to do 20 years first as well. And lets cut theirs at the same time?? Awe geeze they wont do that will they. I say we vote them all out next go around
      .

    • What does a congressman get after only 5 years in congress? Hypocrites!

  17. After serving 20 years and getting half of my base pay which was $2200.00 a month so I got $1100.00 a month when I retired. A shithead in congress does 4 to 6 years and gets full 100% pay and benefits and his wife gets a check too for nothing, that equitable. Congress and passed presidents created the freaking problems not us the protectors, they should pay for it. I propose that all living presidents and their wives pay get cut to "O" dollars, and retired congress men and women get no pay and benefits, and current serving congressional members forfeit 25% of their pay and not get any pay after they are out of office since most get wealthy after their 4 or 6 years of vacation on capital hill.

    • Ron, you should really do your research. Continuing to spout the rumor that they get 100% of their pay after 6 years changed when Federal Employee Retirement System was enacted in 1986. Congress and their staffers are now covered under FERS. Their retirement is calculated the same as all Federal Employees. If we are going to successfully fight these injustices, we should be well versed at presenting a truthful case.

    • while yet we all agree with this they still get away with hurting the military in the long run. my husband served 20 yrs and has a disability rating and has been retired since 1999. does this now mean that he will start losing some of his pay little by little or just not get the cola any more. we have lived so long on what little he gets now that i'm not sure what a cola raise would look like. because by the time they give you that 1% they take it plus some back out in taxes so really we don't see a cola raise any way.

  18. This whole deal stinks. The lefties sure found lots of money for obamacare website, and the new lawyers for immigration reform. Why do us veterans bear this? Why not take money from the pay raises of congress? Or eliminate our 'palace guard' at the White House? I'm sure el presidente can hire one of his sheeple to hold his umbrellas, as I'm sure the Marines are nauseated every time they have to salute him, especially when they are ignored.

  19. I am a 20 year VET and still proud to be serving but yet again we our the primary target for cuts. Paul Ryan needs to be removed from his position and get someone in his position that we can trust and who will defend us like we have defended him. Paul Ryan and Patty Murray good luck in your careers hopefully every past and present military service members are tracking on what you are doing and how you are against the military.

  20. ERNIE KOTSOS says:

    I am retired Navy doctor. I'm upset and appalled by this decision. Not for me, but for mostly the enlisted men. Their pensions are not that great, and they often can't get a good job after service, unless it is a "Gov" job. People, if you respect the Army, Navy, AIr Force and Marines who served honorably for their relatively low pay, please say no to this. At bare minimum, they could look at reducing the Officer's COLA or do means testing and GRANDFATHER it in. Trust me, this is a FULL ON ASSAULT against Military people, who generally vote Republican. Patty Murray and Paul Ryan didn't think this through. Just watch, the military advocate groups will have them quaking in their boots… but for the average American, this is a slam and needs to be stopped. It's not like they are going to save that much money! We waste so much–

    • The so-called savings will go to those over-priced defense contractors who tend to dump money in the politician's reelection pocketbook.

  21. don campas says:
  22. don campas says:

    Wait …..lets take the free cell phones and hundreds in food stamps welfare receipients get…..wait that’s stupid….lets take money from people who actually worked and earned something.

    • I've got to agree, especially with the cell phones……food stamps result in food for the needy….at least that's the idea of them…..what do the cell phones do?
      We have gotten to the point where the unemployed don't have to give up a single thing…..

    • ADCS (AW) RET 23YRS says:
  23. I am retired Military, 74 years of age, with a disability rating. I have watched Congress slowly and consistently, whittle away at the retirement benefits that were promised to us upon enlistment. Now, the Dod is asking Congress to further whittle away our benefits so Dept of Defense has more money for their "Budget". Hence, the 1% COLA reduction. But wait, this isn't for JUST one year. It continues until there will be no more COLA adjustments for the Retired Military. Log on and see what other Retiree organizations, such as AMRA, MOAA etc. are advising their members.

    • As I read the article I was left with the impression that the cut would not apply to those over 62. Is that correct? As said above we need to get the budget under control. I would hope that the 1st step would be controlling waste Tax increases wisely applied should be the next step. If cuts have to be made they should be applied equally keeping in mind that like the 74 year old gentleman above we were not paid very much when we signed up. We had to put up with a lot. One of the tings that kept me going was my promised retirement.

      • ENOUGH ALREADY says:

        And as Mr. Kerry gives Viet Nam money to help because of earth warming, darn I wish I would have paid more attention to that article. Hey the Viet Namese need the money more than us.After all we are all overpaid old Vets which serve no purpose to this country anymore. So we should get the word out very vocally over the radio, TV's etc. Don't join the military because our politicians don't keep their word or contracts.

        DON'T YOU GET IT WE ARE NOTHING UNTIL WE COMBINE, JOIN FORCES AND GET THE WORD OUT. SITTING HERE BEHIND YOUR COMPUTER OR WRITING A LETTER TO YOUR ELITE POLITICIAN IS LIKE TALKING TO A WALL, BUT GET LOUD ENOUGH AND THE WALLS WILL BREAK DUE TO SOUND PRESSURE.

  24. Maybe they are trying to force us onto to food stamps. What a load of crap from two people who never served. It is bad enough that I can no longer afford my meds, now they are working on taking away basic support we earned by staying in a substandard wage profession for most of our careers. Most of us did it because we love our country.We could have chose another field. We paid for the retainer pay with our blood sweat and tears. Too bad for us I guess. I hope all retirees under/over 62 and active duty say something to their Senators and Congressman, because together we are strong.

  25. OutsideVoice says:

    I agree this is awful, but the problem isn't any one politician or trying to play one cut off against another. When the time comes to balance the budget (which is not now, in the middle of a jobs recession), it will need to be done with a balance of cuts and new taxes/revenue. Don't like being cut? Then stop electing intransigent Republicans who refuse to consider new revenues, even by cutting corporate welfare to billionaires. Now you know how millions of state and local government employees who have had their promised pensions ripped away feel! Also, the immediate problem is that we are NEVER going to get our economy moving with austerity budgets, and should stop trying until we get closer to full employment. Just look to Europe to see how poorly cutting spending in the face of budget deficits is working out for them.

    • timberking says:

      Put the 21 million american's that are out of work back to work and you don't need to new taxes/revenue.
      You sound like a person that voted for obama a couple of times…

    • Agree with the above

    • SGM Steve (Ret) says:

      How about stopping the lies of the intransigent Democrats who never met a dollar they wouldn't spend on buying votes of the lazy. You will never create wealth in this country by taking from those who create it (actually work and make something). The lie here is that you can make the economy grow by taking from someone who is productive to give it as a handout to the non productive. Government doesn't ever "create" anything, including wealth. Also, comparing bureaucrats to people who have been placed in harms way in is a fool's errand.

    • Intransignent Republicans? OK! I hate to spoil your liberal TAX TAX TAX rant…. here is what Democratic Icon said about taxes: A tax cut means higher family income and higher business profits and a balanced federal budget…. As the national income grows, the federal government will ultimately end up with more revenues. Prosperity is the real way to balance our budget. By lowering tax rates, by increasing jobs and income, we can expand tax revenues and finally bring our budget into balance John F Kennedy.

    • You compare our warriors to millions of state and government employees….who sat on their butts braving paper cuts and carpal tunnel. The last people who should have their benefits taken are those who fought for their country. In fact, the only people who should never get their benefits or pay cut are the military. To compare them to lazy overpaid government workers is an outrage. I know. I worked for the federal government. I was paid more in my first year in an entry level position than I did after 4 years and a combat tour in Iraq.

    • Common Sense Soldier says:

      OK…take a breath…by your posting, I assume you have called for the US to balance the budget "next year = later", every year of your life.
      This is not hard….you cannot spend more than you make, and ever break even. Period.
      So here is a solution—for next year's budget, we don't borrow just 40%, we borrow 100%…that way we float the country for one entire year while the current year tax revenue goes into the coffers for the county. That changes the metrics so that Congress will no longer 'project' a budget–we will know exactly how much money we have in the coffers (cash) to spend. Then you have a balanced budget Constitutional Amendment passed that forbids the consideration of a budget that spends more than we take in in taxes. Also, change the allocation of spending from a dollar amount (ie, the $2 billion bridge to nowhere) to a percentage of the budget for a program (ie, social security is assigned ~ 28.0023% of the existing budget (coffers)). You have now essentially 'incorporated' America. If we pull together and do well as a nation, we ALL do well—-if we compete poorly with the world?–less money for us!
      And the only way we can constitutionally borrow more than we have in the coffers, is by a 2/3 majority of each house, AND by 2/3s of all the Governor's of the States.
      Once that plan/law/constitutional amendment is in place, you will see the world flock to invest in the now-solid, USA.
      Pretty tough requirement?—it SHOULD BE! Deficit spending is like debtors prison passing one debt from a Father to a Son….it is an immoral outrage.
      Common Sense must rule—if you make a promise—as an individual or nation, you must keep your promise. This issue smacks of the USA changing their portion of my contract after I have faithfully served, rendered, and upkept my obligation for the last 26 years……no one ever told me I could 're-negotiate' the terms of my contract mid-stride….actually, it's not 're-negotiate', it's flat out changing the rules with no notification/negotiation/fairness……I am sick of my country being represented by individuals who cannot keep their word, and thereby, cause me t0 call into question my Nation's resolve…..are we good for our word or not?
      If a person's word is worth nothing, neither is his 'free speech'–the same applies to this nation.

  26. We need to take care of the sick and lame but not the lazy. Before one dollar is cut from service members (active and retired) we need to make cuts to the lazy.

  27. Don't just write the Congressmen, visit them…

    At their office, at their meetings with voters, at their golf course.

    Both of my Senators are voting against it. Have you talked to yours?

    My house rep voted for it. He has not been answering his telephones at any of his 3 offices for 5 days now….and has the recording turned off for taking messages…

    That cowards name is Brett Guthrie…

    • He left the military after three years as a 1st Lieutenant. I guess his Ivy League Yale education helped him see that he could either stay in the military 20 years and get a modest retirement pension or get out after three years, run for congress and have a SUPER pension after only five years……surprised he's a Republican….especially in Kentucky!

  28. Doug Chandler says:

    This is truly a slap in the face. While these people were tending to their flower gardens we were in harms way, and away from our families for a miniscule salary that barely allowed us to make ends meet. I stood the watch honorably and w/out hesitation for 28 years and this is what I get? Tell Paul Ryan to take a cut in his 100% lucrative pension until he reaches age 62, and listen to the whining.

  29. What they fail to mention is that the COLA for any given year is usually only 1% anyway, which means 0 Cola each year.

  30. Leon Talley, USA Ret says:

    Rep Ryan and Sen Murray – Where were people like you when I was flying (as a crew chief) on over 500 hours of combat missions in Vietnam in 1962. My pay was $210.00 a month and was not authorized combat pay because we were not "supposed" to be in combat. I survived being shot at on a daily basis, a crash, engine failures, and a transmission failure. Although serving in a position one grade higher than my own grade, no promotions were given for an entire year. In fact I completed 12 years of service for my country before my pay exceeded $300.00 a month. To top off this insult of reducing the COLA for retired military personnel, Rep Ryan and Sen Murray get their full retirement after only five years of service.

  31. Richard Cooner says:

    I share the same deep-seated frustration and flagrant betrayal that supposedly is for the greater good of the nation. Paul Ryan????? One of our strong hopefuls for Commander-in-Chief.
    I'm sure he will at least remind the healthcare committee to unequivocally reduce or increase health premiums proportionately to COLA (as previously planned). Ted Cruz, please fight for the unpopular solution again. Godspeed.

    • you expect Ted Cruz to support you haha he wants the entire pension system gone as well as social security and medicare gone

    • Free-thinker says:

      Paul Ryan, "one of our strong hopefuls for CIC". Your kidding right? That will never happen accept in your dreams!

  32. Don TRICARO says:

    Here is the Letter I sent my Representative Joaquin Castro in Military City USA (San Antonio, TX) who voted for the Budget that supports cutting Military Retiree COLA's….

    I am very disappointed that you voted for the Budget Proposal that would take money out of my future Retired Military Paychecks. This is unacceptable and I will not stand for it. I am going on notice to let you know that I will be letting all of your retired military constituents in your district know how you voted. I endured many sacrifices throughout many 24 years of faithful service to this Country. I protected your freedoms so that you could attend a prestigious University such as Stanford. Funny I don't remember seeing you on any of my deployments to the Middle East either. How would you feel if you got a portion of your "GENEROUS" pension cut when you leave office? You can rest assure if Mickey Mouse runs against you at reelection that I will be voting for him!!

  33. The solution to most of our problems could be solved with term limitations and no retirement benefits for serving in Congress. It should be a privilege to serve in Congress and then go back to the private sector, not make it a career. They should also only accept pay for the days they are actually at work and not while they are out campaigning for reelection. The latter would be solved with term limitations. I am certain none of this will happen in my lifetime as the people who vote on it are in fact the abusers of the system. I spent thirty years in the U.S. Navy and served honorably which is more than most in Congress can say but still their retirement is much better than mine and their lives are never in danger, their families are always with them and they can vote themselves a pay raise without someone looking at the books and telling them we can't afford it this year. Must be nice, but also it would seem hard to look in the mirror without feeling some embarrassment. At least it would be for me!

  34. Who draws retired COLA and how? I now am over 62, but never heard of or got any retired COLA. I agee that Congress and the Senate are getting too much and too many benefits and voting their own pay raises is just wrong. It should be a voluntary position if someone really believes they want to serve the people.

    • petethepilot says:

      The military retirement pay is compensation in it's truest form. The wording pension for retired military pay is only used by the IRS so that it can defined as unearned income. It can't be used to fund IRAs. Most all of us that retired received a letter stating that we could be recalled back to active duty at any time. Guess what age the DOD could keep you, 62 sound familiar! If you use a military clinic for health care your record with them has a chart in the back of the file that tracks your health condition for return to duty, imagine that. That is why the cola is important when it started along with the all volunteer military. It is important for the nation to maintain a group of separated retired personnel to tap if needed at a certain reasonable financial wellbeing. The cola has done this well. Rep. Ryan's off-handed ill conceived remark about easing the sequester for two years for the DOD, then saying we took care of somethings that are on autopilot was an insult to all the hard working military members past and present, you didn't even have the fortitude to tell all the military community we were getting screwed. Unforgivable!

    • If you get a military retirement check, and/or a disability check from the VA, you get a Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) based on the CPI (as an inflation index), just like Social Security beneficiaries.

      • ADCS (AW) RET 23YRS says:
        • I agree that the cuts will hurt. But where/when were COLA increases promised? Also, this "Only" affects those who are not yet 62 years old.

          • petethepilot says:

            Mark, please see some of my remarks in this blog on retired pay. To maintain an all volunteer force the nation needs a retired population that is capable to be recalled to active duty. That is where retired pay as compensation with a cola comes into play. No where formally should you see other than the IRS code for unearned income purposes referred to as a pension.

    • I agree. It is shameful how they are treating our country and I hope to God that we do not have a Red Dawn in the next two years. Like the picture of a desolate wasteland of bombed out houses and buildings Obama may not be the one suggesting the cuts but he sure isn't saying much about stopping them, in fact he demands cuts and he doesn't care where. Past Presidents should take a retirement cut of 1/3 of what they get now and see how it feels. No EXEMPTIONS either past or present!!!

    • Don't worry, guest, you get a yearly COLA. COLA stands for "Cost Of Living Adjustment." It's the term used to described the slight increase in your military retirement pay at the beginning of each year, starting with EOM (End Of Month) January. Just look at your RAS for January, and compare it to February. At least until now, the COLA is the same for military retirees as it is for Social Security recipients. Hope this helps.

  35. Take a look at the entire picture, military retirees are having a reduction in their retirement benefits after serving 20 + years under less than good conditions and often worse. And then we have the sector of entitlement people who have given nothing and plan on giving less int he future and they are not having their entitlements reduced and they have never paid into them nor served their country in any capacity save drawing money for not working. Sooner or later, probably later Washing bureaucrats will appreciate the military-aftr all if it weren't for the military the politicians would have a position and if it weren't for the military the entitlement seekers wouldn't have a government to draw upon.

    • Thank you John. We need to change the term "entitlements" to "give aways" though, because like you inferred – they never did anything to be entitled to something…unfortunately not all but too many are leeches on the entitlement programs.

    • I'm so sick and tired of this us v them mentality! Fact, the civilian sector PAYS for the military pay, and civilian sector is struggling, many who are highly educated, experienced and find themselves without any help after they've exhausted unemployment funds and find themselves over educated and experienced without employers to employ them, like those from NASA. When the military has such a low regard for the very people who pay their bills, being the citizenry, one must ask why we have one at all.

      • Lynn, I have proudly been a dependent child of a retired military veteran – my father; and am now a proud dependent spouse of a retired military veteran – my husband! From the (hostile) sound of your post I assume you have no connection or relationship with being a part of the military family. It has ALWAYS been my experience that military personnel and their family members are proud and respectful people, whom have the highest regard /respect for all people — even when some don't deserve it (i.e.: our government…to include the POTUS). Without our military there would be NO CITIZENRY!!! Read history! And by the way, many in the military are HIGHLY educated too. Maybe that's why NASA sent military personnel to the moon instead of "the citizenry".

      • I am educated and was before I entered the military. I didn’t have to but stayed because I love my country even though it cost me some blood and body parts. I don’t regret my decision other than finding out that what I believed to be promises were only partial truths that could be taken away. I don’t want to take away from regular civilians or their contributions but if you look historically, the military and retirees have born the largest burden by percentage wren it comes to anything to do with spending or balancing the budget. I think I went like three or four years with little or no pay raise while Clinton was president.

  36. Can somebody explain what happens to those who took REDUX because they already get 1% below the cost of living increases?

  37. Not sure where this BS started about congressional retirement. They DO NOT get full pay after 5 years. They are in the Federal employee retirement system along with all federal workers. It takes 5 years for anyone to be vested. Their retirement is based on years of service times a percentage. They may not be able to draw anything until age 62 depending on years of service. PLEASE check your facts. I am a retired ex Viet Nam crew chief and don't like the proposed COLA cuts but will fight and comment with the truth.

    • Think you missed the point. They didn't serve in harms way, but after five years they get a cushie package – while retirees must serve a minimum of 20 years (under the old program) to get a package that is quite inferior to what congress will receive. Plus, then watch while congress takes away what was promised to them. I understand wanting factual statements but not sure why you want to defend a congress that wants to hurt and take advantage of those you have given so much of themselves (and in some cases, literally) to defend this great country!

    • I've posted on many blogs on the misunderstanding (promotion of propaganda) in regards to FERS; with links to the policy. It's still a good deal, but not nearly as good as most people believe (to further justify their hatred of the Fed Gov).

  38. Clifton
    In other words when a new Draft system is established,because nobody is going to enlist with what is going on with military compensation. Could you blame them !?
    USN (ret)

  39. James Craven says:

    Less vacations and vacation time for the "Commander-in-Chief"
    Smaller retirement packages for the Congress
    I would love to see an ADMENDMENT requiring the President to have served honorably four years in the US military. Our first President set the example.
    Our allies and 'enemies' have no respect or trust of us. We throw allies away without a thought.
    We are without the ability to defend ourselves and we are really unable to take to the field on one front let alone on two…..
    Sad state of affairs.

    The current occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. has no regard for the Armed Forces of the country he 'rules'.

    Like many veterans, I EARNED my retirement by serving the country with about 15 years out of 25 out of the country…. Yep – :Join the Navy and See the World". No plush office, no staff, and many a day without sleep on ships that rode like a bronco. "Three hots and a cot" and about $90.00 per month when I joined in 1962. Service members upon drawing Social Security will find themselves screwed again. For the 25 years I was in the US NAVY I paid into the Social Security fund. Now fully retired (the tidy sum of) $13.00 of my monthly SS check is for my 25 years in the military (15 of those years was as a QMC…. E7 for those who do not grasp the Navy's rank system.)…. And the folks at the SS office were surprised I was getting that much…. is there something I do not understand ????

    Tis past the time the country resets itself to what it was. Clean house and get some new blood in Washington and set a better course..

  40. Joseph Gaeta says:

    Wow! All of us retirees get to save the country from ruin. Wouldn’t want to be the reason the USA shuts down again. I hope my little 1% buys something this country needs. Don’t see committee members taking a cut.

    • It is because we are powerless and are always, always the ones targeted for cuts and then what is done with the little bit saved? It is not used as advertised , never has and never will, be but used to fund someother unearned benefits give away program. However, if other Government programs, Unions etc gave up the same what ever the amount I would feel like we were making a difference and would welcome the sacrifice. But, that ain't going to happen…to political.

  41. Framk Stanton says:

    The govt will never make good on the 100% med care in retirement.
    Worse- FDR said SS would never be taxed- part B take out IS a tax. C0-pay is a tax. 85% of our SS is further taxed. ALL promises were made in lieu of ridiculously low pay for being a target. SADLY I made those promises out of a brochure from 15 Feb 1957 until the end of 57.

  42. Just received my new statement I got medically retired after 10 years and was getting about 840 a month now its 614, i was barely getting by, now i have to figure out how am i gonna pay my rent! which is 1100 living in california. Way to go congress

    • If you are receiving benefits from California, why not apply for social security disability, and if you can't work apply for un-employability through one the services org: DAV, VFW, need a copy of DD214, and medical records would help get compensation of 100% if you can't work due to you service connected disability. Check-it-out.

  43. If you are pi$$ed off now just wait until the dollar is no longer the standard. Mark my word, it's coming. The rest of the world is fed up with the US printing more money to pay our debt when they cannot do the same thing.Your dollar will be worth about $.10 and our illustrious representatives will be to blame. But what can we do to hold them accountable? Nothing but VOTE. As long as there are more hogs that vote, following the man with the slop bucket, than there are conservatives that vote, then we are fighting a losing battle. It is not going to get any better, it never does. Vote these d!p$h!ts out of office.

  44. Fst Sgt Retired says:

    Bend over military retirees here it comes. I am so tired of writing to Congress about the President's and DOD's proposals to damage our benefits and now here comes Congress after us. We must be easy targets even with all the veteran organizations fighting for us. Just think where we would be without those organizations. Perhaps if we brought back the Draft and more of the population got to feel what its like in the service we would have more support.

  45. Tom Harris says:

    We all know we are getting screwed but do we actually know how much. Because when we get a Cola raise of 1.5 %, our health care and prescriptions fees go up as well goes up also. Now they are going to take the 1% out of our COLA raise and the health care fees will go up the 1.5% of the COLA raise so you see you will be loosing a lot more than 1% to the corrupt congress. I called my congressman and he said this wouldn't happen well he lied, like the congress has been doing to the military for years he will not get my vote.

  46. Robert Fleming says:
  47. I am beyond sick and tired of these jackasses always trying to mess with military retirement benefits and they never once set foot in a combat zone talking all that Bullshit! I want to know how do we get rid of these people and fill congress and the senate with military retirees to run the show! They don't know what their doing to our families always using us as an excuse for anything to cut what we have so rightfully earned! What can we do to fight back and get in their faces so they no it's not ok with any of us!

    • I agree 100%. Let's send our people into harms way then jerk them around when it comes to pay, allowances and benefits. I have a theory that maybe we're still in the mindset that the only reason a person makes the Military a career is that they(we) can't make it on the outside so who cares what we do to them.

    • I'm with you, Wilfredo. HOWEVER, we have at least one military retiree in the Senate who is leading the charge to destroy many of our benefits; Sen. John McCain. I've e-mailed him a few times over the years as well as having written him. While I agree we need MANY more military retirees/vets in the Senate, I caution you to not get too hopeful for the best outcome. Sad, isn't it?

    • enough already says:

      What can we do to fight back and get in their faces so they no it's not ok with any of us!

      Do like I do, get the word out that joining the military for these rich people and fighting their wars is not right. They promise you everything then cut back on you when it is your time to collect the little amount that they give you.
      We need to get the word out to the children and young men and women of this country to tell our politicians go fight your own dirty wars, because right now they are treating retired Vets worse then they treated the Indians of this country.
      I put out the word that Uncle Sam wants to screw you -Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, Coast Guard and National Guard.
      Talk to the young people and let them know that our politicians do not appreciate the military in any regard, and don't keep their promises to you if you join. I told my two boys I would shoot them rather then have them join the military today.

      We have to get the word out vocally and loud so the whole country can hear. I really don't care about a 1% loss of the money, but when they took away my Tricare Prime (not really but made it real inconvenient for me to use in my area. I remember when we were first told about Tricare Prime and told that yes you have to pay for it but you will have medical treatment anywhere even overseas and now I can't use it in my own city where I have been using it for the past 8 years. This hurts, since I have turned diabetic and now need medical support for the first time in my life. I would love to see Congress get hit like we did, or have to use the ACA act themselves.

  48. Mr. Craven,
    I am not hapypy with this situation either, but using this venue to attack the President serves no purpose, he did not craft, or design this Bill, he will eventually sign it but he did not draft it. Use your brain please and be objective when you speak. I know this site is used to vent frustration and anger when we feel powerless; but we are not powerless, we have our votes, you evidently used yours to vote and the rest of the country did the same, as someone who served his country you should be proud of your service and honest in your assessments of the situation, do you not know how your political system works? Congress makes the laws not the president, I am reluctant to put a political spin on this but that is what we are discussing. The political Right may bear more of the fault for our situation than anyone else, (my opinion). As a retiree I am concerned about my benefits, however, I am more concerned for our troops coming home to little or no benefits. We will get through this, we always do. Less blame game, more social involvement could help. No one is 100% right or 100% wrong all the time. You have a peacefull day and relax!

    • You say "Less blame game", but didn't you just blame the "Political Right"?

    • Fst Sgt Retired says:

      Blame Mr. Dennison? Check out the Presidents proposals on changes to Tricare for military retirees. It's only thanks to the House of Representatives that our fees for Tricare and for our medications didn't go way up. The President has lied to us numerous times concerning the Affordable Care Act and has had his Justice Dept. go after whistleblowers more aggressively than any previous administrations, and he has kept information from the public or used misinformation to confuse critics. Remember what happened in Libya. I am a Democrat that believed in Hope and Change only to receive a typical Chicago politician that doesn't understand or care about the United States military or military retirees unless of course he can use us for a photo op. Please don't ask me like you did Mr. Craven if I am an idiot because I blame our Commander in Chief for part of the mess we're in. Remember the saying "The buck stops here." He doesn't get a pass from me just because he's the President or because he's a Democrat.

    • Jon Silvernail says:

      LD, Pull your head out out of the dark regions of your anatomy and see that it is all political. The President, for whom I voted, requests these issues for congressional approval. He is not harmless. Apparently, you need a lesson in Civics!

    • Perhaps you didn't read the whole text where it said that Obama told Congress that he would reduce the retirement COLA to 1%. Maybe you didn't read about the proposals by Obama to create fees for Tricare standard and greatly increase the existing fees until they equaled the fees for Obamacare. It is he who is to blame for this last minute "compromise". I hope all military personnel are watching what Ryan is doing and vote accordingly in any future election.

  49. Russell House says:
  50. I want everyone to know that Sen. Patty Murray sold out Military Retirees and Veterans. She was the Senate Ranking member on the so called Special Budget Committee Light. Sen. Ron Johnson of Wis, said on C-SPAN that members of the Budget Committee didn’t even know what was in the Bill and that they just trusted Ryan and Murray. He said: that the Bill was written only by Cong. Ryan & Sen. Murray and their Staff Lawyers. He said: he would probably Vote yes when the Bill came to the Full House Floor for a Vote, even though he didn’t know what was in it. He stated: that no one on the Special Committee knew what was in the bill, except for Ryan and Murray, that it was a secret deal that the two of them negotiated behind closed doors. I was surprised that he said this, on the air, on C-Span.
    See Part # 2 Next Continued

    • Frustrated Vet says:

      Im not surprised at all that this was secret. I am totally frustrated with Rep Ryan and his lack of support for Retirees and Veterans. This is not his first time turning his back on the Military Retiree. He has never served and therefore doesn't understand. In the past Sen Murray has always supported Veterans and Retirees. I find her actions hard to understand. Regardless. It is time we started voting these folks out. Let them know how you feel and let them know you will not support them in the future.

  51. So, if we take a hit on COLA’s, we can thank Sen. Murray for throwing us under the bus, she sold us out. She says on camera that she stanchly defends Military Retirees and Veterans, but behind the cameras she really only defends her special Woman’s Veterans Programs she sponsored. We need to remember this and do our research beforContinuation Part # 2 of 3 To Above Comment
    e Voting comes up again in the next election cycle. We will see our already small retirement pay dwindle away, by not even keeping close to the real cost of living, or the true inflation rate. So, all affected should send Sen. Murray a thank you note.

    Ryan got what he wanted, no new taxes on Billionaires, Millionaires and Corporations. Murray the self called defender of Veterans and Military Retirees got nothing. Remember, no one knows what is in this Bill, except Ryan and Murray, and now they are all going to vote on it, making it a Statue, or codifying it into Law, with no time to read it. The president already said: he will sign the Bill.

  52. Continuation Part # 2 of 3 To Above Comment

    Please call all of your congressmen and Senators and let them know how you feel. My four sons will not be serving in the military after this. Too many broken promises. I don't want them serving twenty breaking their bodies only for Congress to change the rules and screw them over on their promised benefits.

  53. Want to feel better about our reduction in future earnings. Just Google "Military Waste". If that doesn't boil your blood, nothing will. PS. There are hours of aggravating reading for your review.

  54. what congress and the house don't tell you that you will never get back what you loose in this Bill. By the time you reach early retirement age 62, and you make a combined taxable Income military pension plus half your social security benefits of $24,000 single and $32,000 MFJ, you will have to pay social security tax to the IRS. Which could amount to as much as 50% to 85% depending on all combined taxable Income. You loose @ both ends.

  55. Our military got screwed once again. My husband serviced 20 years in the Air Force. He did 2 tours of duty in Vietnam and now has sever memory loss and the government wants to cut our benefits.

  56. So Retiree's lose every year to active duty personnel. There is a significant gap between retirees after 15 to years from those newly retired of the same rank and years of service. Now we will grow that gap even further. This once again significantly impacts the Baby Boomer generation which the current administration has attacked from it's inception and another example of this admin and congress on their disdain for the military and especially retirees. Couple that with the inequitable system fro figuring COLA, no raises at all for three years and retirees that rely on their military retirement as a primary soource of income are seriously in trouble. Also, CHUCKT, you should do a little more research into Congressional retirement because you sir are wrong!!!!!!!!

  57. I am a retired Veteran from the US Air Force. I am 100% disabled and unemployable according to the Veteran Administration. I was very conservative when I was in the military and remained so upon retirement until I entered the workforce back in 1986. I said that I was unemployable, but that didn’t happen until the VA reviewed my military history and associated my health condition with Agent Orange, and that didn’t happen until 2010. By that time I had worked another career with the Federal Government and it was then I found out how our system really works.
    It was when Andrew hit Florida that I found out how we can be misguided in our beliefs of who is working for and who against the people. I am still Conservative in my thinking but I can’t bring myself to vote for a Republican because for the most part, that is not concerned with the plight of the people that is not a part of some big cooperation. All of us that draw a check from the military, Social Security or any other Governmental source are considered to be a part of that famous 47% Mr. Romney spoke of. I am very proud of my military service and I served Presidents from LBJ to Bill (Bubba) Clinton and I found fault with them all and good with them all, but once I was asked why I didn’t run for President because I was so outspoken and at that time I said that if I wanted to be powerful, U would run to be a Senator because that is where the power is located. When I joined the Federal Government in 1990, I found that I had been right in my thinking because the President only proposes and sign, he/she has no vote on any laws or legislation passed. So, if you have a problem with what is going on in our government, look close at your Representative and your Senators because they are the ones doing whatever that is being done to us. I know that there are many that dislike this President and I have my thoughts as to why, but when it is hurting your pocket, it is time you tried to find the source of your problem and push your emotional issues to the side. Watch what is done by those you sent to Washington or even your state houses, and don’t trust any news source except PBS because I find that all of the rest have a political agenda and they can use words to force us to focus away from the problem. I learned this when I was working with Customs and was searching the luggage of the “Helpful” traveler.
    The very last President I actually trusted was Richard Nixon because he was a crook and everyone knew it, but he at least took care of his military people.
    It is popular to dislike Obama in Conservative circles, but your anger is being misdirected by the helpful traveler.

  58. Frustrated Vet says:

    We need to vote as a consistent block and start voting against any member of Congress that supports any more cuts to Military Retirees and Veterans benefits. Enough is enough. We are not their punching bag. Take Military Retiree benefits out of DOD and put them in an agency that will be properly funded and fully supported.

  59. There are so many other programs that could be (easily) cut, yet they (spineless politicians) find the military an easy target. Ironically, we (the military) are strong enough to protect our country from the world but defenseless when it comes to protecting ourselves from our government.

    • Enough already says:

      Easy solution, I tell every kid that asks me "Should I join the Military" I tell them no, go to college and get an education, the less people we have in the military, the less people Congress (or our politicians can mess with). If I knew what I know today, I would have given congress, and every politician the middle finger, and told them to fight their own darn wars. Our biggest defense now is telling the younger generation "just say no to joining the military" unless it is a real third world war and actually is in defense of our nation due to invasion. The politicians keep giving tax money away to other countries while cutting back on its own people, totally unsat.

  60. Just want to make sure I have this straight. They are cutting the annual retirement cost of living adjustment (COLA) by one full percentage point – setting the rate at one percent below the actual Consumer Price Index AND they connected TRICARE fee increases to retiree COLA increases. So they are going to pay us less in COLA and take what is left for TRICARE. Wow, what a deal.

    • B Landers 58 says:

      cook you are correct,the only way to rectify this problem is 'term Limits"then the free loaders just might have to find a job

  61. if they make cuts to help the country,so be it,but how much has the elected government officials including president and vice. seems that this should be published also. we know they have a lot more vacation time then all the military have,and they don't have to spend months,years etc away from there families and worry if they have enough monies to pay utilities and put food on the table.while there spouse may be in HARMS WAY protecting these peoples making the laws.and 90%haven't spent one day in military,shame on them

  62. This is such a travesty. Seemingly, our Vets who have sacrificed so much for our country are again, in the line of fire. Why not take from the pockets of our lawmakers to give them a taste of their own medicine?

    • Jon Silvernail says:

      Are you kidding me? These ungrateful morons know nothing about service to their country. Why should they care about those of us who have served?

  63. Retired nearly 14 years back, an E7 retiring today with 22 yrs, will make nearly as much as an E9 that retired back in '00 with 22 yrs; and they want to further the gap by another %.

    • Pray, chslw11, would you clarify the analogy in light of your conclusion.
      Or am I missing something after the Chinese closed the gap between Shanghai and the moon :)

  64. Some times the biggest obstacles for our troops to hurdle aren't always found on the battlefield, but on the home front.

    • Amen. I came aboard in 1962, commissioned March 63. A part of the reason I came aboard was the promises of the medical, which would in part make up for the terrible living conditions and horrible pay, compared to our civilian brothers. We had been promised FREE medical, dental, etc for life. My dad, a retired Col. Assured me that a life time of service would be adequately rewarded. He believed that as he believed in the government he served for 30 years. I too believed it and served 20. That promise has long been broken, and now they want to cut our COLA. As I am well past 62, I have no idea how this will effect me. I know that those under 62 will get it right in the shorts. Time for our Congress to do the right thing and keep the promised made to us.

  65. This is unreal. If they are going to hit the Military Retirees, who is next? Military active duty pay cuts? What more of a sacrifice does our Military Service Members have to give. Hell they have given up sons, daughters, fathers, mothers. WHAT more do we have to give for you Washington want-a-be-elites? Did you forget who you work for? You work for us! We got you in, we can get you out! Hands off our Military pay, Retiree's pay, and Veterans Disability pay!
    Call you Senators, write them now with a short message, HANDS OFF THE MILITARY PAY! Weather it be Retiree, Active Duty, or Veterans with Disabilities!

  66. I'm surprised the HIGHLY PAID Senators and Congressmen have not written a law reducing our pension. Military retirees are sitting ducks for budget cuts. All the pain inflicted on retirees' pocketbooks result in savings that is MINISCULE compared to the overall government abuse in spending of the taxpayers' money. Why can't they find elsewhere to cut the "fat"?
    I'm not surprised that welfare recipients remain "golden".

    • The welfare recipient ants remain golden because the politicians need their vote at election time. Why worth about creating decent paying jobs when we can hand out welfare checks and keep a large segment of the American society pacified.

  67. Mamas: Don't let your sons and daughters join the military…ever!

  68. The first thing we must remember is that Rep. Paul Ryan and Sen. Patty Murray are at the head of this BS given to our retired folks. I would like to see both of these so called voice of the people live on what we pay our retired folks. Lets do the following Rep. Ryan and Sen. Murray cut your pay down to an E-7 with 20 years of service retired soldier. Just to be fair let's cut all of those that voted for this to do the same; and while your at it lets cut your days off down some. How much money would we save then? I have always said "Lead by Example" So Rep. Ryan and you Sen. Murray how about it, cut your pay down to a retired E-7 with 20 years. I will remember come your re-election.

    • That's actually a good idea, and a heck-of-a wake-up call… would work out to roughly $2000 a month, depending on when the computation was made (if retired E7 w/ 20 from 2005, would be $1951 today).

      40% of workers in this country make $10 or less per hour… so close to the mean that it would be 'fair.'

      While we're at it, take away their expense accounts. It's 2013… telecommuting would save $100s of millions a year alone, just within Congress.

    • I agree that they shoudl be held accountable but news reports say the Pentagon leadership actually requested this be in the agreement. If true, they need to go as well.

  69. Richard W Garretson says:

    How can you cut our veterans retirement pay who have given so much to our nation. Once you continue in this direction it wont stop at 1%. I have served in the Washington State National for 30 years. Please protect those men and women who have serve.

  70. This is effectively a tax hike to the military families that the rest of the population does not pay! I have written as much to our congresspeople, please do the same. Our miliyary already shoulders more than their fair share. Notice there is no similar cut to congress or any other government agency, ie civil service, post office, contractors, beltway bandits, white house, justice dept, and so on. Can we get a law suit here? This is discrimintory as well as BS.

  71. Cutting the annual retirement cost of living adjustment for working age retirees (under age 62) by one full percentage point? Is this strictly towards the military retirement only? If so, will Rep. Ryan and Sen. Murray and the rest of our political leaders have a similar cut?

  72. We, the vetrans, have given so much for so little in return that to cut what we do have is a disgrace. I served 28 years just to get what little I have and some overpaid, uninformed politician wants to cut it back.
    Send our elected leaders to a war zone for a year and see how their attitude will change. Let them live in a 10 man tent for a year, eat MRE's twice a day, let them smell the foul stench. I spent 5 years in Iraq and Afghanistan and earned my retirement and my benefits. Let them earn theirs!

  73. THE ONLY LEGAL OPTION WE HAVE IS TO VOTE,VOTE, AND VOTE UNTIL WE FIRE THEM ALL. GOD BLESS OUR MEN AND WOMEN OF HONOR. If this happen's I will be living on the street.

  74. I see a lot of you are angry with the president about these cuts. Just one problem with that. The congress appropriates the funds. In other word they control the purse. The president can do one of two things, one sign the bill, two veto the bill. Its our congress persons that are wheeling the ax. I remember the old solgon back in the day "three hots and a cot and medical for life." The old soldiers home got a new name, CAMPUS got a new name and we have been loosing ever since. The republicans are mad because they lost to the president and they like so many on the right can't stand the thought. They set the house on fire and they been calling and canceling the alarm ever since. When you vote next year remember where these cuts are really coming from.

    • Troop Pay: The NDAA supports current law, which is intended to ensure pay for our troops keeps pace with the civilian sector, but provides the President with latitude to make exceptions by executive order. President Obama has notified Congress that he intends to use his authority to set the 2014 military pay increase at 1 percent. The NDAA neither affirms nor rejects the President’s decision.Translation: Expect to see a 1 percent military pay increase across-the-board. The increase is half a percent lower than the cost of living increase given to retirees and veterans on disability

      • All well and good, easy to cooly say with MOF's. But as the bill payer, my insurance went up 24% for auto/home (no claims, good record), utilities rose 18%, utility taxes across the board rose 22% this year. Property taxes up 11% (though property values continued to fall on the city's own records), fresh groceries up 20-44% depending on type item! canned and dry foods including bulk rose 17%, dry goods across the board are up about 7%, hard goods (real numbers) rose 6%, durable goofs about 4.5% (again real numbers from non-government pie in sky sources). My home repairs rise in cost with labor and materials base, yard maint. due to my military full disability up another 7% this year. No part of my life has got cheaper except through economizing or simply doing without. My wife has to work to take up the slack when I am more and more requiring her assistance.
        I was told when I became 100% disabled in the Army that the pay rate and COLA would keep up with the REAL cost of living. (That puff of smoke was warm and fuzzy and reassuring at the time but might as well have come from my recruiter!). The whole thing was a lie from the beginning to trick eager idealistic young minds into romanticizing that someone will be honorable and keep their promises. It's a lie and our President and houses all should be deeply ashamed in their track record regarding this!

    • So enest, what do you think about Obama cutting active duty pay raises?

      "In the midst of discussion about launching a U.S. military strike on Syria, President Obama moved Friday to reduce the size of January’s military raise.

      Instead of the 1.8 percent raise due troops under a federal pay formula, Obama notified Congress he is exercising his powers as the government’s pay agent to cap the Jan. 1 increase at 1 percent.

      The announcement came at 5 p.m. at the start of the Labor Day weekend after the news had been dominated for days about how the U.S. should respond to apparent use of chemical weapons against civilians by the government of Syria.

      The pay decision is not unexpected and is not final, but it may diminish some support for a bigger military raise.

      Obama’s 2014 defense budget sent to Congress in February included a 1 percent pay increase, a recommendation endorsed by the Senate Armed Services Committee but opposed by the House of Representatives. The defense authorization and appropriations bills approved by the House include the 1.8 percent across-the-board raise, the amount called for under the Federal Pay Comparability Act requiring raises to keep pace with private-sector wages.

      Congress could override Obama’s pay order in whatever final defense legislation is passed for the year. However, doing so requires finding $580 million in 2014 and $3.5 billion over five years to make up the difference between the 1 percent and 1.8 percent raises. Lawmakers will try to find money to offset the raise at the same time Congress is wrestling with debt ceiling and spending decisions."

      I know that the President is never held accountable for anything. at . all.

      "President Barack Obama began and ended his State of the Union address in January by heaping lavish praise upon the men and women of the military. He used words like "courage, selflessness and teamwork" to describe their ability to bravely accomplish each mission he set for them. The war in Iraq is over. Osama bin Laden is dead. Troops are coming home from Afghanistan. So now — in a show of thanks — the president wants to gradually triple their Tricare premiums.

      Tricare, according to its website, "is the health care program serving Uniformed Service members, retirees and their families worldwide."

      The administration's admitted objective to Congress, as reported by the Washington Free Beacon, is "to force military retirees to reduce their involvement in Tricare and eventually opt out of the program in favor of alternatives established by the 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare."

      Under the new plan, Tricare annual premiums will increase 30 percent to 78 percent in the first year. After that the plan more than triples the premium payment in five-year increases ranging from 94 percent to 345 percent."

      What about Obama wanting to raise Tricare fees?

    • You are one of the "obamaphites" I take it! Yep, absolutely amazing!! when he screwes us directly, you swear it's the "right wing-christian zelots" that are screwing up the system and blocking all his "progress" (i.e. more wasteful spending). when it's him screwing us by proxy, it's "ow, congress makes the laws, he only signs or vetos"!!! so basically, what you're continually saying is "the annointed ne can do no wrong". what part of "frackin' liar" dosn't ring true?

      • I'd shake your hand if I knew you! So here's one by proxy! Truth is Truth and no one side can blame the other with impunity in any of this. They lied. The lie. They will continue to lie. Because power corrupts (Congress & Senate) and absolute power corrupts absolutely (Pres. Obama!). He has been recorded now to have broken over 100 of his bigger more idealistic promises and over 220 altogether! Guinness, get out your book of World Records because he's nowhere near done!

  75. SFC(R) Dwaine Shafe says:

    I served this county as a proud member of our Armed Service, Did my time and retired. I slept in the mud of other countries, sweated by butt of in other combat zones, and burned S**t in barrels just to have someone that has had a silver spoon in the mouth their entire life tell me that they won't fulfill their end of the contract. I carry two different health insurances on my self and family just to deal with the rise in health care and still have to pay a deductible. Tell me again how I can afford to pay my taxes each year?

  76. If I promised my employees a retirement plan then started cutting it after they retired I would be locked up.

  77. The enlisted man's mantra: We the Willing, Lead by the Unknowing, have done the Impossible, for the Ungrateful ! We consistently did SO much, with SO little, for SO long, that we became capable of doing almost Anything, with absolutely Nothing. And Now, having completed our many assigned tasks, we are to be thoroughly SCREWED, by those whom we’ve faithfully served!

    • How does Congress do it? Honestly how do they continue to live with themselves after continually screwing the very people who have supported and defended this great country. They claim to support and hide behind a lapel pin of the American flag and then turn around and legislate our men and women of the active and retired military out of the very benefits they were promised for sacrificing so much. I have heard from one Senator, Kelly Ayotte from NH who made a direct point of opposing this part of the bill and she would vote no on the budget proposal because of this part. She even went as far as to introduce an alternative to remove the COLA reduction and urged her colleagues to do the same. Ultimately I think she knew if wouldn't stand up due to the garbage in Washington behind the scenes. Even our staunch Republican Senator Orin Hatch voted FOR the budget and thus against the retirees. My hat off and salute to Senator Ayotte for at least trying and making a voice. To the other so called representatives who voted against the military people with this budget, good luck fighting your wars in the future. I hope you brought some MRE's with you because your sign up sheet just got a lot shorter.

  78. The politicians that came up with the idea of cutting cola for retired military are traitors to the country and sould be treated as such . the cola is a way of keeping up with the cost of liveing (IE price of milk and other services) we have to pay for out of pocket with what little we get in retirement checks. I am retired and served for twenty years, and to see this kind of disgrace to the retired military is just plain dishonorable .Dennis

  79. What I sent my Senators and Representative.

    Thinking of voting for the 1% reduction in military retiree cola's per year as I read the article. Must sound like a good deal. Please consider the same for yourself, just to be fair.

    I notice you are married. Please also consider 1 1/2 separation every 5 (hardship tours, deployments and whatnot), again just to be fair.

    I would mention that occasionally you have to dodge bullets, but seeing as how well liked the government is, I don't think I need to mention that (and no this is not a death threat, I don't own a firearm and don't intend on shooting anybody, it's just how well liked you guys are right now).

    Yes voting for it seems the easy way out, but is it the right way?

    Think about it.

  80. What this is really about is defense contracts and promises that GOP Congressman have made to their big donors. Time to delivery some pork. These GOP members must provide some kind of results so big corporate donors continue to give. A thought to ponder is the two party system fosters these kinds of processes. Why do you think the Speaker of the House hates the Tea Party. A way to break this cycle is to never vote Democrat or Republican. We must end the two party system. What if congress was made up of multiple parties where big donations to one party or the other were meaningless. What if the congressional make up of the house was 8 or 10 parties deep? We can end their power grab simply never vote for a Republican or Democrat. We do have more than two choices!

  81. Here again we the RETIREES LOSE to Legislation forced on us by Numb Skulls who never made a real sacrafice in their lives and stand to NOT lose any of their generous Benefits or entitlements. They have no compassion about what they are proposing to do to the lambs they were willing to send into harms way for risk of slaughter. They really would not know a HERO, if it saluted them, would they? SHAME ON ALL OF THEM!!!!

  82. jamesherbertharrison says:

    To cut anything from military retirees, who have given limbs, blood, and even lives to protect our freedom while at the same time sending welfare checks to millions and millions of people who won't get off their dead ass is a national disgrace. Meanwhile, our CIC has an blank taxpayer check to take lavish vacations. Paul Ryan may have completely sunk his future political aspirations with this "deal". The GOP had best not forget that the military is the only department in the federal government that are a part of their support base.

  83. MSG retired says:

    Congressmen are paid about $175,000 a year. Did they take a pay cut? NO!
    Big oil companies are subsidized by our tax dollars. Did congress reduce the amount of tax free handouts that these multibillion profit companies receive? NO! Billionaires have loop holes that they utilize to effectively pay less (as a percentage) in taxes as the middle class. The average retiree draws 1500-2500 a month…Taking away from the retiree, who has sacrificed years, blood, sweat, marriages, limbs, friends, a normal sense of community, etc, etc, etc ..instead of the power hungry politicians, greedy corporations, and the I'm better than you uber-rich….makes perfect sense to me.

  84. So how does it work for those of us that are of working age but can't work due to a disability?

  85. Has Paul Ryan and Patty Murray served 20 plus years in the military probably not so why should the care about us. Every year the military loses health care, pay and Congress and Senate get pay raise plus other free perks. Its time we get ride of all of them and make a law that the people vote on their pay raises like the do ours. No wonder so many good people are getting out of the military.

    • Those weasels can draw retirement from congress with as few as 6 years and their pay raises are set in stone. When I first enlisted I was also guaranteed free military health care for life too. Military health care has virtually disappeared, and now we have to pay for Tricare until we can be shoved off onto Medicare…which we have to shell out even more for on pain of not being covered by Tricare For Life. One thing I can see wrong with the whole military retirement package is this: We (the military member, not the dependants) were guaranteed certain things when we enlisted. Adding everybody down to and including the family dog to the beneficiary lists for FREE is the problem. I wasn't issued a wife in my seabag and it's not the primary function of the military to provide for one at my expense. Honour your commitments to us first, and start charging for the ancillary baggage I didn't ask for and don't use. It was bad enough that when my squadrons went on cruise I lost my BAQ but my mortgage didn't stop, while the married guy in the rack next to me got more BAQ which didn't stop, and got "miss my wife" pay on top of that (family separation allowance). I never would have made it a career if I had had any idea the government that guaranteed me stuff when I enlisted would welch on those promises at the other end. Those SOBs that want to cut ANYTHING individual service members (not dependents) were guaranteed should have to live on what we were paid and have to do what we had to do to get it. Until they walk in our shoes, their pampered asses should keeps their mitts off (no pun intended there). All you military geniuses who support the teabaggers should really open your eyes too…They are your BIGGEST enemy…

  86. BTC Mike USN, Ret. says:

    We will never see it happen, but we need another amendment to the constitution. This amendment would prohibit anyone from being elected to a federal office or appointed to the Supreme Court unless they had honorably served in the military.

    • I agree completely with this and have been saying this for years. Also, how can the Commander-in-Chief properly perform these duties if he/she never served in active duty??

    • Judy Savercool says:

      I agree 100%. I don't think anyone should be permitted to hold an office unless they've completed at the very least one tour of duty in the military. Their tunes would change real fast.

  87. concurrent receipt is next

  88. As a retired MSgt, I find it so hypocritical that the same politicians, Democrat and Republican that wave the flag every Veterans Day and Memorial Day vote to hurt those who really contrrbuted to this country. We gave our youth, our physicality, our families and lost friends defending the right for people that did not serve to make careers, money and actually spend Christmas with their families. I'll say this, "I would have more respect for a politician who comes out and states he or she does not support Veterans then those (D and R) who are simply two-faced liars." If it walks like a duck, sounds like a duck guess what?

  89. This squawking is really something. The military retirement system is insane.
    I speak from experience. I retired in 1968 in the grade of Lt. Colonel. I was 39 years old. I was in perfect health. While in service I never made more then $9,000 per year. I went on to have a reasonably successful civilian career and finally retired at age 65. My current military retirement pay, after medicare deduction is over $37,000 per year. For those who have not been injured retirement should start at 65, like everyone else.

    • Really Colonel? For those who served in the enlisted ranks the retired pay was not as grand – Speak for the officer corps, obviously you have limited knowledge about the enlisted side fot he house.

    • coden easy to say now that your 65 doubt your retired

    • Ahhhhhhhh yes thank you for your support. Running for CONgress anytime soon? I would love to have you speak at ANY veterans organization today with your views.

    • LTC Active Duty says:

      What a load of BS, then you should have never taken your retirement
      I cannot believe you could make such a statement.

    • LtCol (Ret) says:

      Since you don't mind them reaching into your pocket, do you mind sending me a check for approximately $120K to cover what they are going to take from me? That way, we can both feel good.

    • Colonel, I will send you a roll of toilet paper so you can wipe your mouth.

    • That's easy to say once you have reached that age. There are many wasted expenses the govt could be cutting, such as overseas assistance before cutting into the pay of those who chose to serve with the understanding they would receive these benefits.

    • We served for twenty plus years and some lose parts of there body by protecting this country. Lots of the elective officials did not serve this country but yet gets special benefit and retirements with out working in office for more than 12 years. IS THAT RIGHT? Free medical

    • Well la de da for you….you were in perfect health. Of course you were…you were a LT Colonel. You didn't do any grunt work. Not everyone had that type of career and not everybody can work another career. Get out of your own little bubble.

    • 1SG Cliff says:

      LTC Dan—"Stupid is as Stupid does" and/or says. Having retired as a 1SG, E-8 in 1977 at the age of 38, my entitlement was given at 55% of active duty pay; approximately $550.00 per month before SBP deduction. Not a lot of money for a family of five then, and what our Military receives today is certainly insufficent. One question Sir, was your military career duty; Active, Reserve or National Guard? Most retirees also go on to have "reasonably successful" career's and I'm sure you have enjoyed the additional money received from 1968 til age 65 and retirement on Social Security, which made life better didn't it. You most likely enjoyed the many COLA increase's provided to the Military; active and retired over the past years but yet want to deprive our troops of today the same, fair and just treatment. Your hypocracy astonishes me. Keep in mind LCT Dan, you earned every penny of that $37,000 you mentioned, and whatever SSI you receive, paid for in time and dollars. Now you should go to a mirror, look at who you see, and ask, what was I thinking about when I wrote my remarks.

    • GREAT FOR YOU HOW ABOUT THE E5 THAT RETIRED IN 1987 COULD NOT GET A JOB THAT PAYED MORE THEN 20,000 A YEAR AT AGE 40 BECAUSE HE LOST HIS GI BILL IN 1989 BECAUSE OF CONGRESS CHANGING THE GI BILL HAD NO EDUCATION THAT WAS USABLE AND MOST HE GETS IN NOW IS $800 MONTH REAL GREAT COST OF LIVING HE GOT WITH REDUCTIONS IN COLA OVER THE YEARS

  90. Perfect example…the Congress has no memory, no conscience, and no idea of what honoring a commitment means.

  91. and what, if any (extremely doubtful) cut, is Congress voting for themselves to take……across the board, their salary and benefits make the military and vets look like abandoned orphans…..the difference?……the military can't fight back, can't go on strike, can't do any of the things Congress can do when they don't like the deal they are offered…..the military, by law, must show up every day for work, must do everything they are told to do, if not…they break the very laws created by the supposedly august body that looks out for no one but themselves. Congress needs some serious come upance !!

    • Retirees and Veterans can fight back… and perhaps they want us to. Only problem is that in the case of a Retiree, if you get convicted of a Felony, you lose your retirement pay.

  92. Why don't they just take it all away now, we are such a small group by total population??? I know it is easier to just Chip away and remove earned benefits slowly. You know the old theory that a frog will jump out of a pot of hot water but if you increase the heat slowly to a boil over time he will not notice till it’s too late…

  93. Sounds an awful-lot like the REDUX retirement option, but without the $30,000 (before tax) lump-sum you would receive WHILE STILL ON ACTIVE DUTY (at the 15 year A.F.S. career point) and the one-time "inflation adjustment" at age 60 (or 62) in exchange for a voluntary 1% per year reduction to COLA during receipt of retirement pay, as well as an adjusted formula for calculating base pay for retirement (2% per year for first 20 years service, then 3.5% per year added per year of service after 20 years of your High 36 average).

    This option only made sense if you "invested" the $30,000 (about $22,500 after 25% federal withholding) and were able to get a return on investment better than CPI.

    Since the pay reduction in the bill is a full 1% per year lopped off the top of any future COLA adjustment, this amount will compound so that a retiree would lose about 20% of the purchasing power of their retirement every 14.4 years.

    There is no talk about REDUX options… just the cut in COLA adjustments.

    So many problems with this option. It's not like retirees have a choice. We can't go back and say, "No Thanks, give me back my 20 (or more) years." If current retirees were grandfathered in, as well as any service-member currently on active duty, well, I could almost swallow this option so long as they give the REDUX options to all new soldiers entering active duty from some point in time forward.

    So if this is such a great option for cutting "wasteful" spending, why isn't this change being instituted FOR ALL FEDERAL EMPLOYEES??? How about CONGRESS?

    I guess Ryan and Murray do not need our votes in the future, as they do not give two shakes about military veterans and retirees. Someone needs to put a muzzle on those two legislators, as they are clueless.

    I feel like we (retirees and vets) are looked upon by some in government as some kind of welfare recipient or leech, nursing off the tit of the tax payer. Those who view military vets and retirees like this have no idea what it is like to serve, sometimes in other countries that hate us, as far as several thousand miles away from home, with a chance of being shot or blown up, for a very modest salary and a promise that we would be taken care of NO MATTER WHAT… serving our own country so that others won't have to.

  94. Dorothy Rogers says:

    As a widow of a retired Army Sgt. I can tell you the people who run our gov can do most anything . My husband died 19 days before I turned 62 I was suppost to receive 55 % of his pay but was told at age 62 I would be double dipping so my check was cut to 35 % and stayed that way for 10 years then they decided this was wrong so over the next 3 years they increased my check up to the 55 % But forget about the !0 years I only received 35 % those years were long gone never to be paid .They will do anything to take a penny away from us.

  95. Danny ret.Navy says:

    Why don't they close that loop hole that lets illegals get child tax credits at the end of the year, that could save the government 4.2 billion dollars right there.

  96. This is for the Lt. Col that is making $37K a year. As a ret Msgt with 20 yrs, plus I worked after retiring in 1981, my Military ret. pay before taxes and tricare payments is all of $17K a year. Hardly enough to live on. If it wasn't for Social Security, plus a small pension from Boeing, I would not have very much. I would be gad to have $37K plus my social social security, I would be able to do just fine. Any cut in my benefits, would really effect me.

    • John Saunders says:

      I am a 77 yera old retired Army officer who retired in 1979 after nearly 22 years of sevice. While this recommendation does not affect me I fine it ridicules that these non serving military freaks have the authority to make these stupid recommendations that hurt our servicemen. What right do they have to do so. They should be remembered on election day and rid them of
      their office and all the benefits they enjoy. Lets vote them out at election time. l

    • I believe that you are not affected Anyone over 62 is exempted.

      • bill94513, I think you overlooked that John Saunders stated that "While this recommendation does not affect me"…..I believe his comments are defending his military brothers and sister from the unfair governing.

  97. Ret. LTC G. Alvarado says:

    With all of my active and reserve time I served 39 years and 10 months. I served it proudly and with dignity. I understand that times are tough for everyone to include our government. How choices and decisions that are being made currently will inflame and hurt a lot of retirees and active Soldiers, Airmen, Sailors, Marines and Coast Guardsmen. The retirees will say "not another cut" and the active members will throw their arms up and say " we're next". These cuts to our military are bad for a variety of reasons but wouldn't be so bad if we could see congress, the senate and other government workers take cuts in their pay and retired benefits as well.

    As a country we should take care of those who put their life on the line and have given up so much and sacrificed so much so that we all can live the way we do in this country with freedom to do what we want providing it is legal.

    As a government, we all should take cuts in our pay and not single out the military to make another sacrifice and experience further loss of dignity! I would be willing to endure another cut if I saw the other departments of government doing the same. Since I do not see that happening, it only sends a message that Mr. Ryan and Ms Murray do not care about the Veterans and Military and are only concerned about numbers and their own agenda.

    People and governments around the world are having to tighten the purse strings and budgets. How novel can it be if we all did the same and worked together in coming up with a budget that would work for everyone!

  98. CW2, USA, Ret says:

    I would hope that each and every member of the military family unite to challenge this amendment. It is obvious that congress and in particular congressman Ryan don't give a damn about the service we have provided this Nation. MOAA, VFW, DAV, American Legion and every affiliation of the military let your congressperson know how you feel about this sad story. With all the cuts to budget that are available this should have been the last to be considered.

  99. So we have planned on certain money when we retire and some one on capital hell wants to take it away.. I would bet in a millions years they are NOT MILTARY. Let me request to take away some of their retirement……..and see them squirm. 30 years and this is the pay back.

    • Unfortunately, some previous military are supporting this and giving cover to others. Senator McCain, for one. It turns my stomach.

  100. The way that I look at it is for no one to reenlist let them go back to the draft to get their volunteers and see what they think then. Maybe they will have more respect for the service members then.

    • How about all citizens being required to perform a minimum 2 years of military duty after high school (or if they drop out of school) so later if they do go into politics they have some kind of clue about the military

    • Bring back the draft and the first people to be drafted should be a FAMILY MEMBER of every member currently serving in congress.

    • Protest should be staged in front of all recruiting stations to warn recruits of the lies they will be told

  101. USN retired says:

    So we retirees get effed again! What's new! Let's give all these people who don't work food stamps and welfare and everything else, but let those of us who served 20 years or more hang with our asses out in the breeze. Sure, let's take care of civilians before we take care of active duty military, retirees, reservists, etc. Fire them all!

  102. Change the rules for those enlisting now. If they decide retirement is worth staying for they can. For those already retired who fulfilled their end of the bargain, and cannot rejoin to earn new credits to offset this…foul. My free dental is now paid for entirely by me. My free medical now has an annual fee, and cost sharing that is now going up every few years. Further, they want means testing to deny me even more. Now, along the way High three kicked in, and I will now lose 1% each year until 62. How many more adjustments must I make before any complaint is considered whining?

  103. I just sent a scathing letter to my Senators here in VA. We can all sit here and bitch about this or we can let these bastards know that we will be watching and waiting to see who votes the wrong way on this and come election time we will be marching thier candy asses out of office! With the Social media monster that is available we can and will be heard on this issue! Make a difference and make sure you talk to as many people as you can about this, and make sure they talk to as many people as they can about this! Lets get a spiderweb of assistence going. The American people need to stand up for us the way we stood up for them! We never asked for anything except for what we were promised!

    http://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information

    • All military personnel and their family members need to make sure this is an issue in the up coming mid-term elections…..every member of congress that voted yes for this must be held accountable. Voting is our only recourse…..outside of a revolution!

    • Count me In Spence. Not gonna just sit and take it. Kaine is fast to sell us out . Just got a letter from him telling me in short "I vote the way I think is best" I had to tell him his JOB was to speak for the people not for what HE THINKS. Now on to his side kick.

    • Mike Shults says:

      Spencer , I will vote and will do as I can but I am in the state of Washington, and the lib's rule here. I will do as much as I can. I believe that you can not bitch if you do not Vote.

  104. Frank L. Montanaro says:

    Did you vote for or against this?

  105. Ret Mustang says:

    If this current move by our Washington political representatives is such a great cost saving plan, then why not improve on it by cutting back on yearly pay increases for all (and I mean ALL!!) government employees? or maybe we will just pick on the loyal military — they are such an easy target ! BTW, I wonder if they are aware of the big list of government ridiculous waste and spending projects as announced on the Fox News channel today???

  106. The truth is that all management (civilian corporations, government including military) considers retirement pay to be an expense that needs to be reduced. The retiree has served and is no longer needed, so why should they be paid. Regardless of past promises made, this drain on present budgets must be stopped. Management historically is very short sighted. When the reality of their actions comes home no-one will be willing to join the military and endure all the related hardships just to be shunned when their worth is no longer appreciated. Eventually the draft will be needed to man the force. But, by then to current management will be long gone (not on my watch) and not concerned. We need to ALL vote out our representatives NOW even if we like ours. Vote them all out and start over with a new government. It's easier than a revolution ! Iceland did it and so can we.

    • Petethepilot says:

      Mac, you are right on target. My biggest issue with everyone in DC is they are all so out of touch, 10 billion going to publicize ACA which could have funded the retired pay. The reality is that they view retired pay as a pension with no obligations on the member part after separation. This is no where near the truth, we are all subject to recall. Generally to age 62, twice in the last 20 years I have been asked if I would like to return out of retirement. People do not understand that retired pay is now with the all volunteer force a compensation with a cola to help maintain a population to call back to active duty if needed. Only the IRS defines retired pay as a pension so that it may be considered as unearned income and not be used to fund IRAs. My last point is shame on the Republication Senators who voted for the Budget deal today, we all should never forget this day. I want to thank the few Senators who raised this issue and if they hadn't no one outside the military community would have known.

  107. Paul Ryan……you are a HYPOCRITE and a LIAR!!!!

  108. If congress wants to reduce our COLA, then congress if receiving a retirement COLA should abide by the exact same stipulations as Military retiree's. I think it is very close for the Military active and retired, to begin a Class Action Suit to limit congress's ability to change laws that are changes to our original contract terms.

    • Count me in for the class action suit! Congress will be shaking in their boots when they see the number of veterans/voters they have emboldened with this budget deal….

  109. Mike Shults says:

    Patty Maury, and people like you. I am from the state of Washington and a retired Military Enlisted/Officer of 26 years With 10 Overseas deployments on Aircraft Carriers and stationed in Ice Land for 2 years. I have no regrets in serving my country even tho the sacrifice was great. However, for you to look at a way to cut the budget is to take out of my fellow retirees and my pay is just wrong. If you have done the same to Civil service people and yourself then I would not complain. I do not believe in all the spending that you guys do and I do not want to continue to pay for it. Sometimes it fills that you really do not have a clue. You can not spend what you do not have. Now I/we have less just to pay for stupid things that you do. I have never voted for you and never will. I will make sure everyone I talk to knows you do not really support the Military are retirees.

    • Niels Slater says:

      I agree with this Gentleman. Why doesn't Congress take the same cut in their pay as well as the Civil Service Retiree. I know this won't happened, but to help with the budget, why doesn't Congress take a paycut themselves instead of automatically giving themselves a pay raise everyyear.

    • Bravo!! Vote all incumbents out send a message to Washington

  110. I'm just disgusted with Congress.

  111. Tom Stewart says:

    Retired. I would suggest that every retired service member call 202-224-3121 which is the operator for congress & the senate. Ask for your rep. or sen. then explain your dis- satisfaction with their vote (if they voted for it). Many of the aides I talked to yesteraday had very little if any understanding of this COLA cut. And what is magic about age 62 ?

  112. Dave_Stewart says:

    Vote all these incumbents out and send a message to Washington!

  113. MCPO, USN ret. says:

    Ret MCPO, USN.

    Obama is the root cause of all the evil we have seen the last 5 years. Everything comes back to him! And budget being the #1 thing he has not done, but now, he is strong arming to get his way! Patty Murray and the democrat party is his advocate and champion for a budget deal. Never give in to these assholes and fight them all the way to the ballot box! What would happen if every concerned citizen didn't file tax returns this year? Could get pretty messy now couldn't it……

  114. thefatefullightning says:

    Time to stand up, Ladies!

    Call or e-mail your Senator and House of Reps Member. Make noise about this, a lot of noise. Size does matter here.

  115. Mike Shults says:

    Look, I am just another VET. But, what I think maybe helpful. The things our government is doing to us retirees is not right. I served as you did and the sacrifice was great as yours. This bill is taking away, just a chunk of the benefits we have fought for and worked so hard for. Let us state to all our displeasure with this because if we do not, we will still be the target for budget cuts. We have to stand up now or we will be the whipping boy every time the big boys need to cut money.

    • Donny Brook11 says:

      Mike. I'm with you 100%. I'm not retired military, but I write, call, and raise hell with those DC clowns who screw everything but their wives and themselves whenever they go after the Armed Forces. Unfortunately there are so many non vets in congress today they just don't care. And electing a vet isn't a guarantee the guy is any good either. Look at Kerry, Hagel, and even McCain (JM would have us marching or fighting in Syria today if he could have had his way)

    • These big boys need to understand that doing this will only degrade the morale of our Vets and military overall. Not a smart move. If they are really that concerned why not start with their big salaries.

  116. Here we go again…on the backs of the retires. They promises us benefits and then they take them away or make us pay for them. What kind of country.

    • Hector, the country is good, it's the government that's bad. Use your right to vote and get them out of office. Encourage everyone you know to do the same. Congress cares more about what's good for them, not their constituents. Why do you think they cut our benefits and not theirs?

  117. navy retired says:

    Wow worked hard for 23 years to get a minimum wage retirement just to find out all the information the government provided me as incentive I would get after 23 years is being taken away after I completed my contract obligations and survived. That is not honor that is a slap in the face.

  118. Wm Kimball says:

    Cutting Cola is hogwash, cut some of the Senators and Congress just see
    how they like it. Unfair as unfair can be cola just get us even with other
    government prices medic etc. Hogwash Votes hope to do away with many
    this new election called cleaning house.

  119. Larry Coates says:

    It's time our government starts cutting the retirement and benefits from the Senators and Congressmen, they don't have to serve twenty years to retire with full benefits, all they know how to do it cut pay, cola and benefits from Military Retires and their dependents, you don't see them voting against their pay raise. I suppose this will be another year like last, none or not much of a pay raise and then our president will give congress an senators a twelve hundred dollar cola increase and then say they didn't get a pay raise like he did this pass January. It's time the American people wake up and vote all of them out of office, they need to be showed who they work for.

  120. david parent says:

    Notice how the the fine politicians who always spoke of "our gallant troops" were the first to throw them under the bus!

    • where is sec defense you never hear from say a word in defense of the service member that work for him here yes man for anyone who want to through and drive over the people working to protect this nation thank you sen murray for your support of all the people you claim to like bbbbbsss
      your talk

  121. I can't believe they have once again found a way to find another way of taking away what was promised to us veterans who served our country for 20 or more years. I read in various news articles where we are giving country after country million and billions of dollars to help them and then in turn I see this where the Military Retiree is getting ripped off. I and all my other brothers and sisters in the military now and those of us who have retired will not let this lie. We will come together on this issue and we will make our words heard now and at election time and those who voted for this, Democrat, Republican or Independent will not receive our votes. It's time we pull together and we will.

  122. DonnyBrook11 says:

    Last night the Democrats again blocked a proposal to allow COLA to stay as is. The Dems want to close commissaries, and tried to up youir TRICARE costs and cancelled your Prime. Remember that in November and remember in November that your parents and grandparents lives have been turned upside down over ObamaDoesn'tCare and you'll eventually have to help them out.

    • Are you serious ? Cutting government spending is a republican way of life. Stop blaming everything on the democrats the republicans are worst. Ronald Reagan took away the benefits and retirement that was supposed to go to military wives. The Bipartisan Budget Act of 2013 is basically a republican budget
      .

      • Donny Brook11 says:

        Maybe you should check the congressional record before popping off. The Dems rejected two Republican proposals to stop this. You obviously have a public school education, because you're wrong. Who had the House and the Senate when Reagan supposedly did this nasty to you, anyway. The Dems are enemies of the state. You buy their BS, good for you, but live with what they do to you and don't cry about it.

  123. Donny Brook11 says:

    I'm an old warrior and have more time than most of you, but I write letters, send emails, and call the self-centered betrayers we have elected a couple of days a week. And I don't care if I can vote for them or not. I'm a born and raised Democrat New Dealer father who worked in the West Virginia coal mines at twelve, was in the USA at 14, discharged and given to the CCC at 16 (1932) fought through the depression then fought through WWII in USMC. While LBJ was busy getting us slaughtered in Vietnam I turned to the Republicans by voting for President Reagan as California Governor, although I did vote for RFK in the California primaries. Over the years I have voted for, what I consider a few good Dems. Unfortunately only Joe Mansion easily comes to mind as a good Dem today. My point is, we all have to write, call, and push those in office every stinking day. And we must vote for people who love the country, who love and know the Constitution, and who will put the country first, rule strictly by the Constitution, the people third, and their selves LAST. BTW, isn't their a thought process breakdown here when the Congress will screw vets out of their deserved COLA including disability pensions and medical care, yet leave the overpaid federal employees alone? Give themselves a raise? Continue giving foreign aide to countries whose populations are engaged in killing us, or at the least hate us? So you know, I am not retired military.

  124. (Part One)
    I rely on all of you to make it known that just because we served and are willing to continually serve the United States of America and the Republic for which it stands. It in no way makes us second class nor should we be treated with any less dignity and/or respect that any other being living within the sovereignty of this great nation. We do not serve and never have served the politician or bureaucrat. And even though we serve the president we do not serve and never have served the individual. We have kept this country and all those that reside within its care safe and we have every right to expect the highest care and consideration the nation we have served so diligently can provide…

  125. (Part Two)
    We as a collective group irrelevent of political affiliation know the trials our nation is facing and the challenges it's tackaling each day. But, with our slippery slope economy many of us need and rely on the monetary stipend we receive each month from our pensions and deserve the same security of income as those serving the people within our political system. It is for this reason that I ask each subscriber to this site to remember who we are and what we have sacrificed when next they vote both locally and nationally. I trust we will all push forward and through these difficult times as the patriotic professionals we have always strived to be.
    Thank you all for your service.

  126. Ken R. Hinson RT says:

    Why doesn't "our Congress " and Senate just do away with ALL the military services completely and save that military dollar! If I remember correctly the Congressmen used to vote themselves a huge pay raise every year while the working military man and woman got a measly raise! Guess who won't be re-elected again!!!

  127. W.O.W after 20 years thx congress

  128. I certainly hope that all our retired service members who are democrats remember this crap. It was Patty Murray and the dems who insisted this action be taken. They all are so opposed to military spending in the name of social justice. Avid social spending is a priority to them and screw the military retired or active.

  129. SFC LECZNER says:

    I'AM OVER 62 AND STILL THINK THIS A BUNCH OF BULL. MY BROTHER JUST GOT THE BOOT AFTER 20 + YEARS OF SERVICE DUE TO THE REDUCTION IN FORCE. THEY USUALLY GIVE EACH SERVICE MEMBER SIX MONTHS AT LEAST TO PROCESS OUT. THEY E-MAILED HIM AND GAVE HIM A WEEK!!!!!!! I COLLECT DISABILITY AND SERVED IN VIETNAM. THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA TOOK OUR YOUTH AND NOW ARE GIVING US THE SHAFT. I'AM SURE THIS BLUNDER IS DOING WONDERS FOR RECRUITING AND MOST OF ALL RETENTION. THEY WILL BE FIGHTING THE NEXT WAR WITH ROBOTS. RET. SFC

  130. Soon they will tell the soldier to jump in full gear without parachute due to budget cut

  131. It,s tough now I'm a retiree with 23 years and not rich
    . But if it takes me losing part of my retirement for this country of ours to get out of this hole we are in I'm willing to help and I don't expect others to feel the same. I'm an American first This country has been good to me

    • Admirable Lowell. So how about Congress can take it in the shorts also? What if they decide our "reduced pay for reduced service" is no longer affordable and not just the COLA?

    • Our country will never get out of the hole we are in as long as the government can't manage the money they have, taking away our benefits won't make a dent. Lets convince them to leave the pay/ benefits of the hard working military, active and retired alone. My husband writes our congressmen often, it hasn't done a lot of good but they need to hear our voices.

    • Why should you lose something you have earned while the jackasses in the White House and Congress, due to their stupidity, have put this great country in the shape it is in. Those jackasses need to take a cut long before they take from you, me, and all other veterans.

  132. iraqisandman says:

    Couldn't we use the cuts the FED is making to boost the economy (85 billion per month to 75 billion per month) to cover this? This way, the working man gets his due to boost the economy instead of the rich wall street bankers stashing it away in the multi-million dollar bank accounts. Just saying. Propose this to the senator or congressman of your choice. I think I heard this cut in COLA would save 6 billion , but I don't remember the time period.

  133. John Ferguson says:

    I wwould like to congatulate the Congress for finally working together, but, I hope they never do it again. If using our retired military members to try and balance the budget is a good thing, I don't understand why cutting their pay would,nt even be better. The United States that I grew up in no longer exists. Cut those who gave their all, and doing it to support those, who have not given anything, really makes me wonder what we have to look forward to.

  134. When are the people in congress going to wake up to the fact that social security and medicare are not a GOVERNMENT EXPENDITURE we paid into those funds. When I joined the navy in 1955 I was promised a retirement with many benefits and now that I have retired after 31 years of service those people who are supposed to protect my rights are chipping away at them. I know it is against the law to lie to a government agency, when will they make it a crime for the government to lie to us. There is so much government waste. Why don't they cut the amount of funds they send to countries that hate us and provide aid to terrorists by the amount they want to cut benefits to military retirees

  135. There are a lot more to cut down in the federal system…look into arm forces child care…too many GS 9, 10' 11 employees doing jobs that lower rated person can do. Oh and the equipments they waste.

  136. this is absolutely mind boggling, how easy it is for them to make life changing decisions that does not affect their lives..it's not a matter of which party you claim to affiliate with because they are all using the military as a so call means of reducing the deficit…where do we get so much money from to support other causes that has very little if anything to do with the welfare of this country. whatever happened to our representation in congress…I would venture to say very few that have served in the military is in our congress today…that is why there is no concern for those of us that have served this country. it would be wonderful to get back all the money that we put into the pot over our 20+ years…and this is sad to say but this is only the beginning…I wonder what would happen if all of our troops would lay down there weapons and go home…do you think it would get their attention…why keep a nation safe that does not appreciate your service?

  137. I served 25 years 2 mo. and 11 days doing what ever I was told to do, going where ever I was told to go in what ever conditions, usually without too much grumbling. I been surronded by the some of the most vile creatures of the earth often to protect those whom didn't want to be protected. All because I love this country and the principles it was founded upon.

  138. Think we ought to take over Congress, dress the jackasses in BDUs and march their sorry asses to the mid east for a one year tour. You can bet your bottom dollar that would change their attitude toward those who serve and have served to protect their worthless butts.

  139. How much of a cut does RYAN and MURRY cut from their pay ???

  140. Concerned Vet says:

    All things aside……………………when are elected officials going to stop viewing military benefits as low hanging fruit to ease the nation's financial burden and start critically looking at the whole landscape of expenditures?

    Make decisions where "everyone" contributes to the deficit rather than picking on the military when the going gets tough.

    Many of the elected officials are not very smart and don't work hard by evidence of habitually attacking military benefits.

    This is an ever recurring theme. What's up next??

    • Kenneth Meyer says:

      You got that right and I am tired of it, we need to get those Old term people out and Speaker of the House really needs to get out, all of them need to vote their way the his way and get the Politics out of it.

  141. Concerned Vet says:

    Elected officials, LEAD BY EXAMPLE.

    Start taking pay cuts of your own. If you don't make enough, then get out of politics. Money should not be your only concern for serving anyway.

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