PDA

View Full Version : Joining the Air Force at 17



dberns
12-29-2014, 08:44 PM
Lets say someone joins the air force at 17 with parental consent, and they originally signed for 4 years.

Can that 17 year old change the term of enlistment 6 years the day before he goes to BMT without parental consent? Or is parental consent needed to make an amendment and make it 6 years?

Rusty Jones
12-30-2014, 11:55 AM
Lets say someone joins the air force at 17 with parental consent, and they originally signed for 4 years.

Can that 17 year old change the term of enlistment 6 years the day before he goes to BMT without parental consent? Or is parental consent needed to make an amendment and make it 6 years?

Yes, they can change it without parental consent. The parental consent is simply for you to join the military. It has no further stipulations. When I was a MEPS Classifier, we used to reclassify people all the time into five and six year programs.

Absinthe Anecdote
12-30-2014, 12:57 PM
Do everything you can to go to college first, if you have exhausted all the possibilities and can't make college happen, then consider joining the military.

If you don't have the grades, go to a community college for two years then transfer to a state school. Go talk to an advisor at your local school if you don't know how to make it happen.

Maybe you can get into an ROTC program to help pay for school? Have you explored all your options?

Right now you have something extremely valuable, your youth! Don't squander it because it won't last long.

The only reason I can think of that would make sense for a 17 year old to join the military would be to escape a horrible/abusive home life and a crime ridden neighborhood.

Unless your situation is extremely desperate, try to make college work first.

Explain to us why going into the military for a six year tour is such a good idea.

sandsjames
12-30-2014, 01:47 PM
Do not attend college first. Let the Air Force pay for it. It makes no sense to take the college rout, and waste your money, as it will do nothing for you unless you plan on becoming an officer. There's really no difference between the 4 and 6 years except you may get to join at a slightly higher rank, though you won't really see a difference in money or responsibility.

I commend you for wanting to serve your country at such a young age. It's a great career path (despite all the little things that will irritate you for most of your career). Don't let anyone talk you out of it unless it's not something you really want to do.

Rainmaker
12-30-2014, 04:22 PM
Unless you have a scholarship (or parents made out of money). I'd recommend the military route.

The idea that everybody should go to college comes from arrogant, big government, academic leftists, and corrupt, greedy banksters that need to make you a debt slave, chained to a cubicle for the rest of your life.

The majority of kids that start college, immediately after High school end up dropping out anyway AND they're usually significantly in debt!

It's not really a college education anyway. It's a college indoctrination. But, If college is your thing. You can easily finish an AA in that first enlistment and get out and go to school on your GI bill. You'll be done with a Bachelors by 24 or 25 (which is the norm nowadays anyway).

By the way. Try to pick a useful skill. If you can't find anything useful, I'd Choose Intel analysis. After you ETS, You can always get work as an incompetent and overweight support contractor or permanent, useless, government deadbeat for some bloated government agency (Just because of your clearance).

Best of luck with your future and Aim High!

Stalwart
12-30-2014, 04:30 PM
Explain to us why going into the military for a six year tour is such a good idea.

Some jobs do require a 6-year initial obligation -- long initial training pipleines etc.

Rusty Jones
12-30-2014, 05:40 PM
Some jobs do require a 6-year initial obligation -- long initial training pipleines etc.

I was going to say this earlier.

To the OP: to piggyback, switching from 4 to 6 isn't that simple. Factors involved are bonuses and the particular AFS.

I'm am Air Force Reservist and prior active Navy, so I couldn't tell you how it works exactly for active duty Air Force.

Having been a Navy classifier, I can only speak on what I know from that: most jobs are four year contract. Some are five year. If there is a bonus for the job, and you accept it, it requires you to add on another year.

Six year jobs fall under either the Advanced Electronics Field (AEF) or Advanced Technical Field (ATF). They may or may not come with a bonus, but are 6 years regardless - no extension required, and turning down the bonus does not reduce the contract. Benefits of AEF and ATF are advanced schooling and automatic promotion to E4 once time in rate eligibility are met.

Highly likely that the Air Force doesn't have such a program, since promotion to E4 in the Air Force is automatic for everyone after time in grade eligibility is met.

To sign up for six years, you'd need a five-year AFSC that offers a bonus. Mind you, I'm just going off of how I understand it works in the Navy. I'm sure that there has to be someone here who worked recruiting or classification for active duty Air Force that can give you the best possible answer.

Absinthe Anecdote
12-30-2014, 05:46 PM
Some jobs do require a 6-year initial obligation -- long initial training pipleines etc.

I was just trying to get the kid to think about what he is doing; he will be 23 by the time he gets out.

In my opinion, a person has a better chance of making more money in their late 20s and 30s if they get their bachelors degree knocked out right after high school.

Putting off going to college isn't a wise move, so many doors are closed to you when you don't have that degree.

I realize that not everyone can go to college straight out of high school.

I went straight into the Air Force after high school, and I don't have any doubts that I would have made a hell of a lot more money, and worked better jobs throughout my 20s and 30s if I had went to college instead.

Going to college part-time while on active duty takes a long time, and might not even be possible if he is working rotating shifts. Plus, he won't be able to enroll in classes until he completes 5 level, depending on the job he gets that could be 2 years after he joins.

If he can make college work now, that is the better move by a long shot.

Rusty Jones
12-30-2014, 05:47 PM
Oh, and to add on to what SJ and Rainmaker said: get as many CLEP/DSST exams knocked out while you're on active duty, in addition to taking courses. Use that post 9/11 GI Bill when you get out.

Oh, and don't get married. Don't get married, and don't knock any women up. The temptation to get out of the dorms is going to be there, but eff that. Do your four and GET OUT. Never, NEVER put yourself in a position where you NEED the military. Least of all, more than the military needs YOU. Always have one foot out the door.

Rusty Jones
12-30-2014, 05:51 PM
Going to college part-time while on active duty takes a long time, and might not even be possible if he is working rotating shifts. Plus, he won't be able to enroll in classes until he completes 5 level, depending on the job he gets that could be 2 years after he joins.

He can still take CLEP and DSST exams during those two years. Most four year colleges only have a 30 credit residency requirement. I CLEP'd and DSST'd half way through my bachelor's degree, and in under less than a year. I could have done more if I didn't already have 30 under my belt before I started taking the exams.

Measure Man
12-30-2014, 05:53 PM
If he can make college work now, that is the better move by a long shot.

I agree.

It's true college is not for everyone, but for those who it is for, going out of high school is probably the best investment they can make, and a great experience. Sure, some degrees are better than others.

Rainmaker
12-30-2014, 06:30 PM
I was just trying to get the kid to think about what he is doing; he will be 23 by the time he gets out.

In my opinion, a person has a better chance of making more money in their late 20s and 30s if they get their bachelors degree knocked out right after high school.

Putting off going to college isn't a wise move, so many doors are closed to you when you don't have that degree.

I realize that not everyone can go to college straight out of high school.

I went straight into the Air Force after high school, and I don't have any doubts that I would have made a hell of a lot more money, and worked better jobs throughout my 20s and 30s if I had went to college instead.

Going to college part-time while on active duty takes a long time, and might not even be possible if he is working rotating shifts. Plus, he won't be able to enroll in classes until he completes 5 level, depending on the job he gets that could be 2 years after he joins.

If he can make college work now, that is the better move by a long shot.

comparing the value of college 20-30 years ago is to now is apples and oranges. It's been devalued so much, that most college degrees are not the panacea to equality they're being painted as.

As for the Necessity of college. it depends on your skill set. If you have something technical. than No one much cares about whether you have a degree.

I'll Give you my oldest son for an example. He just turned 26 (Great kid). He Went to College right out of High school for 5 years on a baseball scholarship. He was B-C student. He had a full ride for first 2 years (at a community College), Then transferred and red-shirted and (he received about 80% those last 3 years). He still had to take a loan out for the last 3 years (because he's white and his parents made over $45k).

So, he Graduated with a 3.4 BA in Intl Business $22K in debt and started with no experience with a fortune 100 making about $55K. 3 years later he's working his ass off 50-60 hour weeks and making $65K, and talking about changing careers. he lives in FL and the salaries are low here. but, I'd say 8 years in to the military service he'd be in about the same boat as he is now.

Agree that ROTC would be the best of both worlds. It's really hard to get in right now.

My youngest son, went that route and should commission next year. but, it's getting pretty difficult to get in, they paid to put a lot of kids through school and didn't even let them commission because of the sequester cuts.

sandsjames
12-30-2014, 06:34 PM
I agree.

It's true college is not for everyone, but for those who it is for, going out of high school is probably the best investment they can make, and a great experience. Sure, some degrees are better than others.

My best investment was military right out of high school. Retirement age of 38. That's a monthly paycheck of around 1500 (and that's retiring as an E6). That's 18k a year for 24 years (assuming 0 raises), then it really jumps up. So 18 x 24 = $432,000 (again, assuming no raises until age 62)additional dollars in my pocket while still being young enough to get another good paying job.

I see several students come through the school here that talk about how they'd already be retired but they went to college first and are now joining because they can't find a job and need to pay off their loans.

Of course, it's different for everyone. To each his own. Though if he's planning on being enlisted and making a career out of it then it doesn't make much sense, IMO, to knock out the college first.

TJMAC77SP
12-30-2014, 06:36 PM
I tell anyone who will listen (and even those that won't...like my younger son) that of all the things in my life I regret, not finishing college as soon as possible is one of them. I closed off paths that I wish now I hadn't. It all worked out but having as many choices as possible early in your life will help you later down the road.

Go to college and if you do decide to enlist.......take college classes immediately anyway and as many as possible. You will have to sacrifice some of you paycheck and off-duty time but don't give in to the temptation many of your peers will and blow it off.

RJ is right about CLEP and DANTES. I got a lot of credit hours that way. Helped tremendously.

Rainmaker, not sure I agree completely with you. Even in the technical fields college degrees get you more money coming in and even in the door to begin with. Why try to succeed in spite of statistics when having the degree makes you competitive?

I cannot foresee a day when having a degree is not valuable. None of us can tell the future of the job market but if history continues as it has, a degree will maintain value.

Capt Alfredo
12-30-2014, 06:37 PM
Would never recommend enlisting in the military straight out of high school, at least not for a kid who had his shit together. I enlisted at 19 and ended up finishing college at 23 while still in, then went to OTS. As a first generation college graduate, I wish someone had told me about ROTC. I don't regret enlisted service, but it's not the optimal way to go. If either kid shows a desire for military service, I will recommend ROTC or (god forbid) the Academy.

Rainmaker
12-30-2014, 06:55 PM
I tell anyone who will listen (and even those that won't...like my younger son) that of all the things in my life I regret, not finishing college as soon as possible is one of them. I closed off paths that I wish now I hadn't. It all worked out but having as many choices as possible early in your life will help you later down the road.

Go to college and if you do decide to enlist.......take college classes immediately anyway and as many as possible. You will have to sacrifice some of you paycheck and off-duty time but don't give in to the temptation many of your peers will and blow it off.

RJ is right about CLEP and DANTES. I got a lot of credit hours that way. Helped tremendously.

Rainmaker, not sure I agree completely with you. Even in the technical fields college degrees get you more money coming in and even in the door to begin with. Why try to succeed in spite of statistics when having the degree makes you competitive?

I cannot foresee a day when having a degree is not valuable. None of us can tell the future of the job market but if history continues as it has, a degree will maintain value.

There's some value in it. Just not as much as there once was. I don't think a young kid would be disadvantaging himself whatsoever, by getting a 4 year enlistment under his belt first and then completing school and starting work at 25 or 26 (debt free instead of $50K in debt with no experience).

In my own case I hired on right off active duty as a GS-13 (Program Manager) with nothing but a HS. diploma and military experience. I did finish a BA after I retired and after 2 years into it, I got so fed up working for the feds and started brokering CRE deals.

Now, Most of the guys here do have some type of finance or Real estate degrees. But, NO ONE CARES about a degree. No one ever asked, me what my degree is in. All that's required to make money is that you have big brass balls.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8kZg_ALxEz0

sandsjames
12-30-2014, 07:34 PM
I don't regret enlisted service but, in my opinion, it's not the optimal way to go.

There...fixed that for ya. You're welcome.

Measure Man
12-30-2014, 07:39 PM
Of course the "value" of college depends on what you want to do and what you study.

Going to a real college full-time is the best way to get a valuable degree
- Engineering
- Medicine
- Law
- Real business degree

These fields require college degrees.

Yes, a lot of us got degrees part time while in the military....they aint these kind of quality degrees, for the most part. We get "Engineering technology" (not a real engineering degree)...Occupational Education, Industrial Technology...or other sorts of "yeah, I got a degree" degrees...

When I say, go to college out of high school, I mean get a real quality degree...and you'll get way ahead in the long run. Yes, my AF enlisted career has been good to me...and led to a nice post-military career as well...but, guys I graduated HS with are surgeons, lawyers, CEOs, etc. I'd say their college paid off for them. I might still go in the military if I had to do it all over again, but I'd get my degree first and go commissioned...

Absinthe Anecdote
12-30-2014, 08:11 PM
My best investment was military right out of high school. Retirement age of 38. That's a monthly paycheck of around 1500 (and that's retiring as an E6). That's 18k a year for 24 years (assuming 0 raises), then it really jumps up. So 18 x 24 = $432,000 (again, assuming no raises until age 62)additional dollars in my pocket while still being young enough to get another good paying job.

I see several students come through the school here that talk about how they'd already be retired but they went to college first and are now joining because they can't find a job and need to pay off their loans.

Of course, it's different for everyone. To each his own. Though if he's planning on being enlisted and making a career out of it then it doesn't make much sense, IMO, to knock out the college first.

I really hope this guy ignores what you are saying. Why don't you tell him about how you whined and complained your entire time in?

I haven't forgot those thousands of posts you made complaining about how bad leadership in the Air Force is. How you constantly complained about PT, wearing a uniform, and going to commander's call. Plus, how you screamed and moaned to anyone who would listen about how unfairly you were treated because you were a fat body.

I even remember how you pitched a fit and cried like a baby because they made you take one last PT test before you went on terminal leave. I distinctly remember how miserable your posts were while you were in, you did nothing but complain about how you couldn't make rank and how leadership didn't care about the troops.

Now you are in here trying to talk like a big shot because you retired as an E-6?

That isn't much to brag about, but I guess that's all you have since you didn't go to college.

sandsjames
12-30-2014, 08:16 PM
That isn't much to brag about, but I guess that's all you have since you didn't go to college.Yep...sucks making 68k a year, and having no stress, between retirement and a government job, with nothing more than a high school degree and a CCAF in my job. Not going to college killed me.

Absinthe Anecdote
12-30-2014, 08:21 PM
Yep...sucks making 68k a year, and having no stress, between retirement and a government job, with nothing more than a high school degree and a CCAF in my job. Not going to college killed me.

News flash, 68K a year does suck.

It is nothing for a guy your age to brag about.

sandsjames
12-30-2014, 08:28 PM
News flash, 68K a year does suck.

It is nothing for a guy your age to brag about.

In your opinion, of course.

I'm very happy, living comfortably, enjoying life.

Rainmaker
12-30-2014, 09:44 PM
News flash, 68K a year does suck.

It is nothing for a guy your age to brag about.

Again. It Depends on were you living. Up there in Balmer $68K might get you out of Polar bear hunting territory. In flyover country (were people still love Jesus) you'd be in tall Cotton. Nomsayin?

TJMAC77SP
12-30-2014, 10:38 PM
There's some value in it. Just not as much as there once was. I don't think a young kid would be disadvantaging himself whatsoever, by getting a 4 year enlistment under his belt first and then completing school and starting work at 25 or 26 (debt free instead of $50K in debt with no experience).

In my own case I hired on right off active duty as a GS-13 (Program Manager) with nothing but a HS. diploma and military experience. I did finish a BA after I retired and after 2 years into it, I got so fed up working for the feds and started brokering CRE deals.

Now, Most of the guys here do have some type of finance or Real estate degrees. But, NO ONE CARES about a degree. No one ever asked, me what my degree is in. All that's required to make money is that you have big brass balls.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8kZg_ALxEz0

I certainly have seen this but it is the exception rather than the rule (in my experience). In fact during my time at Hanscom I had more than one senior GS civilian tell me that they could not hire someone above the GS-12 paygrade without a BS/BA. In any case I can't see the value diminishing over time. I hate to see young people squander chances.

TJMAC77SP
12-30-2014, 10:39 PM
Of course the "value" of college depends on what you want to do and what you study.

Going to a real college full-time is the best way to get a valuable degree
- Engineering
- Medicine
- Law
- Real business degree

These fields require college degrees.

Yes, a lot of us got degrees part time while in the military....they aint these kind of quality degrees, for the most part. We get "Engineering technology" (not a real engineering degree)...Occupational Education, Industrial Technology...or other sorts of "yeah, I got a degree" degrees...

When I say, go to college out of high school, I mean get a real quality degree...and you'll get way ahead in the long run. Yes, my AF enlisted career has been good to me...and led to a nice post-military career as well...but, guys I graduated HS with are surgeons, lawyers, CEOs, etc. I'd say their college paid off for them. I might still go in the military if I had to do it all over again, but I'd get my degree first and go commissioned...

Good point. My degree is pretty useless outside of my field and quite frankly I didn't want to stay in this field when I retired.

Rusty Jones
12-31-2014, 12:08 AM
The value of a college degree has not decreased. The nature of its value has simply changed. Once upon a time, a college degree put you ABOVE the competition. Now, it puts you IN the competition. Where does that leave you if you don't have one? Assed out.

Rusty Jones
12-31-2014, 12:16 AM
Of course the "value" of college depends on what you want to do and what you study.

Going to a real college full-time is the best way to get a valuable degree
- Engineering
- Medicine
- Law
- Real business degree

These fields require college degrees.

Yes, a lot of us got degrees part time while in the military....they aint these kind of quality degrees, for the most part. We get "Engineering technology" (not a real engineering degree)...Occupational Education, Industrial Technology...or other sorts of "yeah, I got a degree" degrees...

When I say, go to college out of high school, I mean get a real quality degree...and you'll get way ahead in the long run. Yes, my AF enlisted career has been good to me...and led to a nice post-military career as well...but, guys I graduated HS with are surgeons, lawyers, CEOs, etc. I'd say their college paid off for them. I might still go in the military if I had to do it all over again, but I'd get my degree first and go commissioned...

Having a bachelor's degree in business with a concentration in HR, and an MBA... my suggestion is not to get a bachelor's in business. If someone wants a job in corporate America, I suggest getting a bachelor's degree in something else and a minor in business, and THEN getting an MBA. If, for example, you have a bachelor's degree in chemistry and you work for DuPont and THEN get an MBA; you'll move up the corporate ladder faster than someone with both a bachelor's and a master's in business (all other factors being equal, of course).

When choosing an undergrad major, the acronym to remember is STEM - science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

Absinthe Anecdote
12-31-2014, 01:04 AM
In your opinion, of course.

I'm very happy, living comfortably, enjoying life.

Good for you, but I am very comfortable saying that you are talking out of your ass when you tell a 17 year-old kid to blow off college.

sandsjames
12-31-2014, 01:31 AM
Good for you, but I am very comfortable saying that you are talking out of your ass when you tell a 17 year-old kid to blow off college.What I'm telling him is to stay out of debt, not blow off college. What sense does it make to pay for college and owe money when you can get paid and go to college for free? You're pretty bright, sometimes. Yet you recommend going into debt before even having a job. And who's talking out of his ass?

Rainmaker
12-31-2014, 01:59 AM
Of course the "value" of college depends on what you want to do and what you study.

Going to a real college full-time is the best way to get a valuable degree
- Engineering
- Medicine
- Law
- Real business degree

These fields require college degrees.

Yes, a lot of us got degrees part time while in the military....they aint these kind of quality degrees, for the most part. We get "Engineering technology" (not a real engineering degree)...Occupational Education, Industrial Technology...or other sorts of "yeah, I got a degree" degrees...

When I say, go to college out of high school, I mean get a real quality degree...and you'll get way ahead in the long run. Yes, my AF enlisted career has been good to me...and led to a nice post-military career as well...but, guys I graduated HS with are surgeons, lawyers, CEOs, etc. I'd say their college paid off for them. I might still go in the military if I had to do it all over again, but I'd get my degree first and go commissioned...

Soooo...What Are you saying? that Rainmaker's dual CCAFs and BS in General studies with a minor in Diversity Awareness from the UMUC on-line campus are overrated?

Rainmaker
12-31-2014, 02:12 AM
I certainly have seen this but it is the exception rather than the rule (in my experience). In fact during my time at Hanscom I had more than one senior GS civilian tell me that they could not hire someone above the GS-12 paygrade without a BS/BA. In any case I can't see the value diminishing over time. I hate to see young people squander chances.

In The .gov make work plantation (that producing nothing) they care. In the private sector no one gives a $hit as Long as You ALWAYS BE CLOSING,Bitches!

RS6405
12-31-2014, 02:40 AM
For what it is worth, my Dad joined at 17 and did 20. He did not finish his Associates degree until his last station (or his last 3 years in, but it was a different era). He had experiance in Safety which translated into several industries (construction, petro-chemical, manufacturing, insurance, etc.)

My siblings and I all went to college and got 4 year degrees, which translated into mediocre jobs. I went back to school mid-life for a law degree and then opened my own business. This past year, it is finally paying off financially, but I'm planning on working another 20 at least in order to take care of my son's future.

The best plan I ever saw was a friend's son who got a 4 year degree in computers. He then went to get an MBA and was hired right out of school making 6 figures a year.

Whatever you do look for a career/education that can touch on several industries then work to for a post-grad business administrative degree.

Absinthe Anecdote
12-31-2014, 02:52 AM
What I'm telling him is to stay out of debt, not blow off college. What sense does it make to pay for college and owe money when you can get paid and go to college for free? You're pretty bright, sometimes. Yet you recommend going into debt before even having a job. And who's talking out of his ass?

You are.

A mere two pages ago you were bragging about making a paltry 68K per year and saying that not going to college didn't kill you.

Now that you have been embarrassed, you are changing your tune and trying to make it look like your message is about not going into debt.

I guess that is your way of admitting you were wrong.

By the way, why don't you tell this young man that that you didn't even have the balls to go look for a job outside the Air Force after you retired?

You went crawling back to the same Air Force that you bitched and moaned about the entire time you were in. Why is that? Might it be because you were under qualified to seek employment elsewhere?

Also, you are really making closer to 50K per year since you included your retirement pay in that amount. Try being a little more transparent about what great things you accomplished with only your HS diploma.

You really make me want to puke.

A young person comes in here asking for advice, and what do you do?

You start stroking and jacking your own fucking ego, never mind the fact that you are telling him total bullshit that could potentially put him at a disadvantage for the rest of his life.

Mjölnir
12-31-2014, 03:18 AM
Folks, let's dial back the personal insults.

Difference of opinions & debate is expected, no need to make things personal.

Measure Man
12-31-2014, 03:51 AM
When choosing an undergrad major, the acronym to remember is STEM - science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

I agree with this 100%...but, for those not STEM inclined, I think business is a pretty good degree to get.

sandsjames
12-31-2014, 10:16 AM
A young person comes in here asking for advice, and what do you do?

You start stroking and jacking your own fucking ego, never mind the fact that you are telling him total bullshit that could potentially put him at a disadvantage for the rest of his life.

Pot...meet kettle.

Fact is, college could also potentially put him at a disadvantage. I know many people who have joined before going to college. They are not at any disadvantage. They are people who have served their country, learned a trade, and lived comfortably after separating. College is for some...it's not for everyone. Same goes for any career choice. I'm sorry your military time was so miserable that you want to deter someone from joining.

Rusty Jones
12-31-2014, 12:20 PM
I agree with this 100%...but, for those not STEM inclined, I think business is a pretty good degree to get.

With the exception of a degree in accounting, the only way I'd recommended an undergrad business degree is if someone wants to start their own business.

Rainmaker
12-31-2014, 02:20 PM
I'd say For the Vast Majority of kids Military Service > College

What percentage of college students could successfully complete a STEM Major? Maybe 10%? And even if you do, you may not even find a job. Because, They'd rather hire an Indian tied to an H1B Visa at half the price, because he can't job hop. Odds are that Indian kid went to school for free, while the American STEM Major went $80K into debt.

Labor has been devalued by Soulless corporate Internationalists and Dual Citizen Banksters that don't give 2 shits about America.

Even if you do crack in to a good paying job at 35-45, they start shit canning people for no reason, because you get too expensive. Hell, they even refer to the workers as "Human Capital". Disgusting.

Don't like it? tough shit. They OWN your representatives in the CONgress. THEY OWN THEM. The Government paid them to outsource the means of production to China and In-source New third world slaves from South America to drive down labor costs and maximize profits.

I say this as someone who netted $142K last year (and trust me that's small potatoes) brokering CRE deals for these bastards. This system is unsustainable. If all this collapses, then I'm afraid heads are going to F-ING roll. So, plan accordingly peeps.

http://www.usnews.com/opinion/articles/2014/09/15/stem-graduates-cant-find-jobs

Rainmaker
12-31-2014, 03:02 PM
Pot...meet kettle.

Fact is, college could also potentially put him at a disadvantage. I know many people who have joined before going to college. They are not at any disadvantage. They are people who have served their country, learned a trade, and lived comfortably after separating. College is for some...it's not for everyone. Same goes for any career choice. I'm sorry your military time was so miserable that you want to deter someone from joining.

You mean starting your life in debt (that can't even be discharged through bankruptcy) can affect your net worth and could possibly limit your future options?? Were did you ever get a silly idea like that from? Your parents?? You are obviously not college "material"!

Rusty Jones
12-31-2014, 03:33 PM
Even if you do crack in to a good paying job at 35-45, they start shit canning people for no reason, because you get too expensive. Hell, they even refer to the workers as "Human Capital". Disgusting.

Don't like it? tough shit. They OWN your representatives in the CONgress. THEY OWN THEM. The Government paid them to outsource the means of production to China and In-source New third world slaves from South America to drive down labor costs and maximize profits.

I say this as someone who netted $142K last year (and trust me that's small potatoes) brokering CRE deals for these bastards. This system is unsustainable. If all this collapses, then I'm afraid heads are going to F-ING roll. So, plan accordingly peeps.

http://www.usnews.com/opinion/articles/2014/09/15/stem-graduates-cant-find-jobs

Karl Marx made similar arguments in The Communist Manifesto .

Rusty Jones
12-31-2014, 03:41 PM
You mean starting your life in debt (that can't even be discharged through bankruptcy) can affect your net worth and could possibly limit your future options?? Were did you ever get a silly idea like that from? Your parents?? You are obviously not college "material"!

Good point. I got a bachelor's and a master's through TA and the GI Bill, and I don't owe anyone a dime. And I STILL have 19 months of GI Bill that I just gave my wife - and I could've had more had I been patient and not used the GI Bill while on active duty.

If I could go back and do it over, I would. But only one term.

Rainmaker
12-31-2014, 04:01 PM
Karl Marx made similar arguments in The Communist Manifesto .

Rainmaker's not an economist.

maybe some terminology. what part? the value of labor? Marx wasn't exactly a "Marxist". Marxism (just like any other theory) gets corrupted when you put the human element into it.

Everything today is set up as barrier to entry. The Problem is not with college per se. the problem is that you need college to even apply for a job that pays a living wage. If You have to indebt yourself to do it than it's a Tax. Why? Because, the government sets the table that way.

Government Regulations are lobbied for by Big Corporations as a barrier to entry to companies that can't afford to comply with the stupidity. Compliance with stupid laws is a Tax.

offshoring jobs and importing cheap labor for the jobs that can't be off-shored is destroying our country. It's not the 1880's anymore we don't need hordes of 3rd world immigrants and internationalist profiteers with dual loyalties fleecing the country.

I believe that Once, you take God out of the equation, the vacuum is filled by the government. then the government determines were your rights come from. That is Anti-American. so, Does that make me a Marxist?

Rainmaker
12-31-2014, 04:26 PM
Good point. I got a bachelor's and a master's through TA and the GI Bill, and I don't owe anyone a dime. And I STILL have 19 months of GI Bill that I just gave my wife - and I could've had more had I been patient and not used the GI Bill while on active duty.

If I could go back and do it over, I would. But only one term.

unless you have someone else paying the tab (a scholarship or rich parents), I'd say an enlistment in the Military (for now) before college is still the best way around that barrier to entry. I'd recommend either the OP serve Less than 6 years or serve the whole 20. The only way to go in my opinion.

I got a Bachelors after I retired. But, only because, I had the GI bill. I refused to give it to my kids. I wanted them to have self equity in the process.

I was working on an MBA (for the living expense payment). But, at 45 I'll never use it and If I had to pay for it at my age, then it wouldn't be worth the investment. You can't beat The GI bill. Thank you SEN Webb and SEN Hagel... 2 of the few non-sellouts IMO.

Capt Alfredo
12-31-2014, 06:10 PM
There...fixed that for ya. You're welcome.

You mean it wasn't glaringly obvious by my post that I was speaking only for myself AKA in my opinion?

sandsjames
12-31-2014, 09:13 PM
You mean it wasn't glaringly obvious by my post that I was speaking only for myself AKA in my opinion?

No........

hustonj
02-10-2015, 08:06 PM
The Problem is that you need college to even apply for a job that pays a living wage.

Actually, that's a false statement and one that's been hurting our infrastructure for awhile and will continue to do so until we can get people to stop repeating it.

The vast majority of Tradesman work provide a nice living wage. You know, the sort of thing that traditionally has apprenticeship programs, not college classrooms, in order to get people started.

http://www.mikeroweworks.com/home

Discusses quite a bit about how to build a solid life without college or the military. We NEED skilled tradesmen to repair and rebuild our infrastructure, so not including the Trades when we talk about productive career paths can seriously harm our own futures.

sandsjames
02-10-2015, 08:18 PM
Actually, that's a false statement and one that's been hurting our infrastructure for awhile and will continue to do so until we can get people to stop repeating it.

The vast majority of Tradesman work provide a nice living wage. You know, the sort of thing that traditionally has apprenticeship programs, not college classrooms, in order to get people started.

http://www.mikeroweworks.com/home

Discusses quite a bit about how to build a solid life without college or the military. We NEED skilled tradesmen to repair and rebuild our infrastructure, so not including the Trades when we talk about productive career paths can seriously harm our own futures.

This is where you're wrong. We've got illegals to handle the trades at a dirt cheap cost to the contractor. What everyone needs to do is go to college and get an all important degree so you can start out owing hundreds of thousands of dollars, requiring a medium/high paying job to even break even over the next 20 years.

Seriously, though, we definitely need more people going into the trades. I'd go so far as to say we need a "trade path" in high school, somewhere around the beginning of the junior year (something other than wood/metal/auto shop classes). Start teaching electrical, HVAC, structures, etc. Give those kids ,who are never going to get good enough grades for a scholarship or lots of money from mommy and daddy in order to go to college, a fighting chance at making a decent living.

Rainmaker
02-10-2015, 08:44 PM
Actually, that's a false statement and one that's been hurting our infrastructure for awhile and will continue to do so until we can get people to stop repeating it.

The vast majority of Tradesman work provide a nice living wage. You know, the sort of thing that traditionally has apprenticeship programs, not college classrooms, in order to get people started.

http://www.mikeroweworks.com/home

Discusses quite a bit about how to build a solid life without college or the military. We NEED skilled tradesmen to repair and rebuild our infrastructure, so not including the Trades when we talk about productive career paths can seriously harm our own futures.

Yes, and it would be a good play for a young man to try that route. .... Rainmaker's very familiar with Mike Rowe, love that show and he is right on target. Maybe Mike will get into politics.

However, Thanks to the Multinational crowd, the majority of our manufacturing base has been offshored (somewhere around 7-15 Million jobs since 1975 depending on who you ask), our main national export is debt. of course there's always going to be a certain number of jobs can't be outsourced. , Most of the technical trade schools cost $10-15K and there are very few opportunities for a young man to find a paid apprenticeship ,a paid electrical apprentice starts at about $15 an hour (in Florida anyway), .if you can find one. Because, with no enforcement of our immigration laws, you have to compete against slave labor for those..... Good Luck because, Free trade = Slave Trade.

The last decent candidate we had breaks it down in Layman's terms...Unfortunately we the people decided to elect the 2 other shitbags on the stage with him instead.....
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rkgx1C_S6ls

Rusty Jones
02-12-2015, 08:23 PM
Actually, that's a false statement and one that's been hurting our infrastructure for awhile and will continue to do so until we can get people to stop repeating it.

The vast majority of Tradesman work provide a nice living wage. You know, the sort of thing that traditionally has apprenticeship programs, not college classrooms, in order to get people started.

http://www.mikeroweworks.com/home

Discusses quite a bit about how to build a solid life without college or the military. We NEED skilled tradesmen to repair and rebuild our infrastructure, so not including the Trades when we talk about productive career paths can seriously harm our own futures.

You're going to need a huge culture shift in this country to get people to buy into this. Your path of advancement in being a tradesman of any kind is to eventually become a foreman... and then what? You're not going to move up anyone's corporate ladder like that. Granted, very few people will ever become a C-level executive; but at least it's IN your path of advancement if you have a job that requires a degree.

I'm not saying that everyone needs to have a job where the path of advancement leads to being a C-level executive. Not saying that at all. But that's how the majority of us think. Hell, that's how I think... that's why I got into my field. I'm a Human Resources professional. Federal employee. The odds of me ever being an SES'er are slim, as very few people will find their way to those positions. But... my path of advancement leads to those positions.

Can't say the same for the guys dragging their knuckles at the shipyard. At the end of the day, they all answer to people on base who have never held a tool in their lives. Positions that the knuckle draggers can't get promoted into.

Me? Just about everyone in my chain of command - well into the SES'ers - has done my job, or held another job in my field but in a different functional area (but still on the same level), before getting to where they are.

If you can convince people to be content with retiring in a floor level supervisory position, great. If not, expect things to stay the same.

sandsjames
02-13-2015, 12:04 PM
You're going to need a huge culture shift in this country to get people to buy into this. Your path of advancement in being a tradesman of any kind is to eventually become a foreman... and then what? You're not going to move up anyone's corporate ladder like that. Granted, very few people will ever become a C-level executive; but at least it's IN your path of advancement if you have a job that requires a degree.

I'm not saying that everyone needs to have a job where the path of advancement leads to being a C-level executive. Not saying that at all. But that's how the majority of us think. Hell, that's how I think... that's why I got into my field. This has been beat into people over the last 20 years...that you have to move up or you're not pulling your weight. It's the biggest contributor to colleges becoming money making corporations. Before this thinking became prevalent, our economy was in a better position and the wage gaps were much smaller.


If you can convince people to be content with retiring in a floor level supervisory position, great. If not, expect things to stay the same.I think the majority of people are perfectly happy to stay in their "floor level" position. Most people don't want the responsibility of a supervisory position. They are content to stay in the production line making widgets, being home in time for dinner and able to spend time with their families while earning a living wage. The reason that people don't stay in those jobs any more is because they are being taken care of by 8 year old Chinese kids and illegals standing in front of Home Depot.

Don't underestimate the willingness of many Americans to stand in a production line and pound steel.

Juggs
02-26-2015, 05:50 PM
News flash, 68K a year does suck.

It is nothing for a guy your age to brag about.

I got out and I'm making 34k a yr because fuck doing gov contractor or GS work. I'm civil service employee in a mid size fire dept and I love my job. I feed my kids, keep a roof over their head. So that 68 a yr being shitty is relative.

Went from making mid 60s while active duty including SDAP, jump and other allowances as a TACP to making 34 and being much happier. Seems like it's not so bad for me. Being a full time FF in a decent town is pretty awesome.

sandsjames
02-27-2015, 01:58 AM
I got out and I'm making 34k a yr because fuck doing gov contractor or GS work. I'm civil service employee in a mid size fire dept and I love my job. I feed my kids, keep a roof over their head. So that 68 a yr being shitty is relative.

Went from making mid 60s while active duty including SDAP, jump and other allowances as a TACP to making 34 and being much happier. Seems like it's not so bad for me. Being a full time FF in a decent town is pretty awesome.

For some people, their happiness and success is gauged by the amount of zeros in their paychecks...even if it's at the expense of being able to enjoy their lives.

Stalwart
02-27-2015, 02:17 AM
For some people, their happiness and success is gauged by the amount of zeros in their paychecks...even if it's at the expense of being able to enjoy their lives.

Very good point.

I got married at my 10 year point in the military and my priorities about my career really changed, once we adopted our daughter things again changed. I enjoy myself a lot more appreciate things a lot more. The mliitary isn't the 'end all be all' for me like it once was.

Rusty Jones
02-27-2015, 01:12 PM
I got out and I'm making 34k a yr because fuck doing gov contractor or GS work. I'm civil service employee in a mid size fire dept and I love my job. I feed my kids, keep a roof over their head. So that 68 a yr being shitty is relative.

Went from making mid 60s while active duty including SDAP, jump and other allowances as a TACP to making 34 and being much happier. Seems like it's not so bad for me. Being a full time FF in a decent town is pretty awesome.

I don't get where 68K sucks. I only make 60K (only counting my GS job, and not my AF Reserve pay), but to put things into perspective, the median FAMILY income in Norfolk is 51K. Now THAT sucks for a family to live off of, and sucks even more when you consider the fact that the very definition of "median" means that 50% of families in the city live on less than that (and Juggs might even disagree with me on this, if he's the sole breadwinner or his wife works part time and only contributes less than an amount that, when combined with his salary, totals 51K or less). But relatively speaking, since my salary alone is more than what at least 50% of whole families in the city make; I don't think that what I make is anything to be ashamed of.

I think that the big problem here is that we're so well compensated on active duty in the military, that too many of us really don't know the definition of "suck" when it comes salary.

hustonj
02-27-2015, 05:05 PM
I've said it before, and usually got told I'm wrong and to shut up, but . . ..

Few IN the military realize how well compensated they really are.

When I left uniform, I got a GS-12/1 on the Rest of the US pay chart, and that new gross income was LESS than I was receiving in the same location as an active duty enlisted puke.

We compensate the military pretty well, today.

Rusty Jones
02-27-2015, 05:46 PM
I've said it before, and usually got told I'm wrong and to shut up, but . . ..

Few IN the military realize how well compensated they really are.

When I left uniform, I got a GS-12/1 on the Rest of the US pay chart, and that new gross income was LESS than I was receiving in the same location as an active duty enlisted puke.

We compensate the military pretty well, today.

Try commenting on any of the "Times" facebook posts concerning military pay, and mention that you're now GS civilian. They all seem to think that anyone with a "GS" in their paygrade makes more than anyone in military. I'm a GS-11 Step 2, and that WOULD put me on par with a 2-year E5 if I didn't have to pay for medical insurance (and into my pension plan... and TSP, which I have to 5% pay into, if I want a retirement anywhere near as good as what the military gets WITHOUT their TSP). Yet, I've got E7's and E8's telling me to "shut the fuck up," because I "make more than they do."

BENDER56
02-27-2015, 06:27 PM
I've said it before, and usually got told I'm wrong and to shut up, but . . ..

Few IN the military realize how well compensated they really are.

When I left uniform, I got a GS-12/1 on the Rest of the US pay chart, and that new gross income was LESS than I was receiving in the same location as an active duty enlisted puke.

We compensate the military pretty well, today.

... and even when I was in, too.

I joined in '84 as an A1C and retired in '10 as a MSgt. Now, I'll admit my wife also worked for much of the time I was in, but due to the frequent moves she never got far up the pay hierarchy and usually worked at jobs paying slightly above minimum wage.

Anyway, we never had any financial problems. We always had enough to pay for everything we needed for ourselves and our kids, most of what we wanted, and still had plenty left over to save and invest. Of course, it helped that neither of us have extravagant "wants".

My last three years on AD I was making more than 70K. And this was for a guy without a degree.

I never understood all the, "Oh, woe is me," whining I heard throughout my career about being so underpaid and impoverished. I got paid the same as them and I was doing just fine, thanks. I dunno, maybe I was paid from the double-secret military pay scale and didn't know it.

It might be before your time, but in 2000 there was an infamous article published in the Washington Post and written by a former member of the Congressional Budget Office entitled, "Our GIs Earn Enough." In it, she made a decent-enough case that military compensation didn't actually suck as much as everyone seemed to believe. Well, from the uproar it created in the rank-and-file military you would have thought the god-hating commies themselves had descended into main-street USA and canceled weekends forever. Thankfully, some SrA wrote a sappy, ad hominem "reply" that got emailed around the world a hundred times and reinforced everyone's certainty that we all lived in suckville and made everybody feel better. I just don't get people.

Now I get 36K for staying home and sitting on my ass. God bless 'Murca.

SomeRandomGuy
02-27-2015, 06:49 PM
... and even when I was in, too.

I joined in '84 as an A1C and retired in '10 as a MSgt. Now, I'll admit my wife also worked for much of the time I was in, but due to the frequent moves she never got far up the pay hierarchy and usually worked at jobs paying slightly above minimum wage.

Anyway, we never had any financial problems. We always had enough to pay for everything we needed for ourselves and our kids, most of what we wanted, and still had plenty left over to save and invest. Of course, it helped that neither of us have extravagant "wants".

My last three years on AD I was making more than 70K. And this was for a guy without a degree.

I never understood all the, "Oh, woe is me," whining I heard throughout my career about being so underpaid and impoverished. I got paid the same as them and I was doing just fine, thanks. I dunno, maybe I was paid from the double-secret military pay scale and didn't know it.

It might be before your time, but in 2000 there was an infamous article published in the Washington Post and written by a former member of the Congressional Budget Office entitled, "Our GIs Earn Enough." In it, she made a decent-enough case that military compensation didn't actually suck as much as everyone seemed to believe. Well, from the uproar it created in the rank-and-file military you would have thought the god-hating commies themselves had descended into main-street USA and canceled weekends forever. Thankfully, some SrA wrote a sappy, ad hominem "reply" that got emailed around the world a hundred times and reinforced everyone's certainty that we all lived in suckville and made everybody feel better. I just don't get people.

Now I get 36K for staying home and sitting on my ass. God bless 'Murca.

The best part about that article was the SrA who wrote it was in a desirebale career field. They tried to make it sound like everyone in the military could get out tomorrow and command 100K per year. If I'm not mistaken the SrA was a computer programer or something.

I kind of wish a SrA from a different career field would write a rebuttal to it. "Hi I'm SrA XXX. I'm part of the 11th Services Squadron. At my job working in the gym I hand out towels, manage the squadron sports leagues, and help people check out equipment. If I got out tomorrow I could get a job at the YMCA for $7 an hour. Instead I'm making almost $50K working here"

P.S. I'm not knocking Services. I'm aware that working at a gym is one of many things they do. I will say this though. When people are in trouble and can't work their normal job where do we send them until their legal situation is resolved? Yep, they go work at the Gym. How hard could it be if it's assumed anyone in the military could take over the job with no training?

Juggs
02-27-2015, 10:27 PM
P
I don't get where 68K sucks. I only make 60K (only counting my GS job, and not my AF Reserve pay), but to put things into perspective, the median FAMILY income in Norfolk is 51K. Now THAT sucks for a family to live off of, and sucks even more when you consider the fact that the very definition of "median" means that 50% of families in the city live on less than that (and Juggs might even disagree with me on this, if he's the sole breadwinner or his wife works part time and only contributes less than an amount that, when combined with his salary, totals 51K or less). But relatively speaking, since my salary alone is more than what at least 50% of whole families in the city make; I don't think that what I make is anything to be ashamed of.

I think that the big problem here is that we're so well compensated on active duty in the military, that too many of us really don't know the definition of "suck" when it comes salary.

Nope the sole breadwinner thank goodness. My wife is paid well for what she does. I've done the samething when folks bitch about pay in the military. You've got a better benefits package, usually better pay and you're very unlikely to be laid off compared to civil servants in smaller towns. Also compared to most military members many firefighters spend many nights away from their families as well. Miss holidays and birthdays. Plus in the military you get pay raises for doing your job. You can even be shitty at your job and get a pay raise.

Stalwart
02-28-2015, 12:21 AM
I've said it before, and usually got told I'm wrong and to shut up, but . . ..

Few IN the military realize how well compensated they really are.

When I left uniform, I got a GS-12/1 on the Rest of the US pay chart, and that new gross income was LESS than I was receiving in the same location as an active duty enlisted puke.

We compensate the military pretty well, today.

The military overall is VERY well compensated for our work. While taking into account that the military is not really comparable to a civilian job -- if you don't like it you can't just quit (unless you desert) and you could be asked to give your life.

I would ask, how many companies would take a high school graduate with no training and pay them roughly $21k per year (avg for an E3) add in about 15k in benefits (free medical, free dental, valuation of their pension, tax fee housing allowance or housing provided etc.) and then pay them while they are trained for their job (1 month to sometimes 18+ months); add in eligibility for 30 days of paid leave from our first day of employment vice a graduated system (which usually at good companies starts at 7 or 10 days per year -- unpaid), granted we have to take leave where sometimes a civilian may not, but we also get time off work to go to medical & dental -- readiness is part of our job etc.

Now, at my level with all my pay & allowances I gross right under $130k per year and I have quite a bit of responsibility associated with my job. My wife's income as a GS13 is right at $100k and she has quite a bit less 'responsibility' than I do.

I will say where I think where the military starts to get undercompensated is at the senior enlisted & even more so at the senior officer grades -- when comparing their levels of responsibility etc. to a corresponding job in the civilian world.

Compare the salary of a Strike Group Commander (O7) or Division Commander (O8) who are in charge of roughly 20,000 people, multi-million dollar budgets and billions of dollars in equipment & property and they are making about $215k per year ... or one of the service chiefs (O10) who would bring in around $300k before the Executive Schedule limits kick in but are basically in charge of the equivilant of a multi-billion dollar corporation with hundreds of thousands of employees ... I am not saying we should dramatically increase their pay but we should be realistic and while they do make pretty good money compared to an E3, they are pretty undercompensated for their level of responsibility as compared to the civilian world.

Stalwart
02-28-2015, 12:30 AM
... and even when I was in, too.

I joined in '84 as an A1C and retired in '10 as a MSgt. Now, I'll admit my wife also worked for much of the time I was in, but due to the frequent moves she never got far up the pay hierarchy and usually worked at jobs paying slightly above minimum wage.

Anyway, we never had any financial problems. We always had enough to pay for everything we needed for ourselves and our kids, most of what we wanted, and still had plenty left over to save and invest. Of course, it helped that neither of us have extravagant "wants".

My last three years on AD I was making more than 70K. And this was for a guy without a degree.

I never understood all the, "Oh, woe is me," whining I heard throughout my career about being so underpaid and impoverished. I got paid the same as them and I was doing just fine, thanks. I dunno, maybe I was paid from the double-secret military pay scale and didn't know it.

It might be before your time, but in 2000 there was an infamous article published in the Washington Post and written by a former member of the Congressional Budget Office entitled, "Our GIs Earn Enough." In it, she made a decent-enough case that military compensation didn't actually suck as much as everyone seemed to believe. Well, from the uproar it created in the rank-and-file military you would have thought the god-hating commies themselves had descended into main-street USA and canceled weekends forever. Thankfully, some SrA wrote a sappy, ad hominem "reply" that got emailed around the world a hundred times and reinforced everyone's certainty that we all lived in suckville and made everybody feel better. I just don't get people.

Now I get $36K for staying home and sitting on my ass. God bless 'Murca.

One of the big problems (maybe the biggest) we have in the military with our pay etc is we have way too many junior people on the lower end of the pay chart (avg for an E3 is about 21k per year in pay -- 35k with benefits etc) who are trying to support a family on their pay with a lifestyle that does not conform to their income. It is entirely possible to do it on $35k or $40k a year but you have to adjust your spending on non-essentials to do it.

As an E3 living in the barracks (& I had no bills) I had more money than I knew what to do with, as an E4 I lived out in town in a decent apartment, as an E5, E6 & E7 I lived in a small beach house on the Atlantic Ocean in NC and still had more money per month than I spent. I didn't get married until I was an E6 and until our current house (I am now an O4) we never really changed the size of the home we had (we went ahead and got a house we think we will be in for 10-15 years.)

Rusty Jones
02-28-2015, 03:19 AM
I would ask, how many companies would take a high school graduate with no training and pay them roughly $21k per year (avg for an E3) add in about 15k in benefits (free medical, free dental, valuation of their pension, tax fee housing allowance or housing provided etc.) and then pay them while they are trained for their job (1 month to sometimes 18+ months); add in eligibility for 30 days of paid leave from our first day of employment vice a graduated system (which usually at good companies starts at 7 or 10 days per year -- unpaid), granted we have to take leave where sometimes a civilian may not, but we also get time off work to go to medical & dental -- readiness is part of our job etc.

Now, at my level with all my pay & allowances I gross right under $130k per year and I have quite a bit of responsibility associated with my job.

You may actually take home more than a civilian who grosses $130K, if you take this into account: take your BAH and BAS, and use the "gross up" calculator at paycheckcity.com. Since those allowances are tax free, you would need to figure out what the gross amounts would be if they were not tax free. That's how I gauge what military members actually make when comparing them to civilians.

Stalwart
02-28-2015, 03:34 AM
You may actually take home more than a civilian who grosses $130K, if you take this into account: take your BAH and BAS, and use the "gross up" calculator at paycheckcity.com. Since those allowances are tax free, you would need to figure out what the gross amounts would be if they were not tax free. That's how I gauge what military members actually make when comparing them to civilians.

I definately do, since my BAH alone is about $42k of my gross. Also factoring that I get medical and dental for me, medical for my family (our daughter's 7 surgeries in the past year have been almost $150k alone) etc.

I don't try to discourage people from getting out / encourage them to stay ... but when I talk to folks who are getting out, money is almost always a factor they bring up. My advice is to take whatever you gross and add about 25-30% ... that would be where you need to start to maintain your standard of living / purchasing power etc. If you are getting out, to increase your standard of living you will add even more. Of course cost of living is a factor; if you are moving from DC to rural North Carolina then you can afford to not 'make more money' but still live better than you were. A friend of mine in the USMC did the opposite: got out of the military and went from North Carolina to DC after landing a job where she was making $6k more a year than she was making in NC and was originally really excited about it. Her standard of living sucked, which made her miserable and not too long after she relocated away from DC out to Montana.