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December 02, 2005

“Bring in 10 people and you can earn $20,000"

From USA Today:

    The Army National Guard, battling a falloff in recruiting, is offering troops a finder's fee for lining up new soldiers. The Guard Recruiter Assistant Program, launched this week in five states, offers National Guard members $1,000 for enlisting a recruit and another $1,000 when the prospect shows up for basic training. “Bring in 10 people and you can earn $20,000,” says Lt. Col. Mike Jones, deputy division chief for recruiting and retention at the National Guard Bureau.

Posted by MikeBurke on December 2, 2005 | Permalink


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sounds hilariously like a pyramid scheme

Posted by: | Dec 2, 2005 11:59:53 PM

Another example of how our military is rapidly degenerating from the traditional concept of citizen-soldier to mercenary.

I don't think I could devise a better way to increase manipulation, fraudulent enlistments and coercion.

This program will bring out the WORST side of people in very difficult financial circumstances.

Even recruiters are not financially rewarded for the number of "scalps" they bring in.

This is a terrible idea and I fear its consequences.

Posted by: IRR Soldier... | Dec 3, 2005 4:41:23 PM

you people are insane...and IRR Soldier...well I don't know what to say ...but you were probably a shitbag in the service and your an even bigger one today...

Posted by: Dave | Dec 3, 2005 8:15:19 PM


My, what a nice post. Why do you feel so threatened? Why do you feel the need to blindly defend the wisdom of continuing a flawed, faltering and increasingly desperate all "volunteer" military?

The jig is up. No matter how the administration, G-1 at the Pentagon or Recruiting Command wants to spin it, we have run out of bodies. It is that simple. It is this reason that the war in Iraq, at current force levels, is unsuustainable for anything longer than another 18-24 months.

The recent GAO report confirms that combat arms MOSs have been habitually undersubscribed, while the Army and USMC knowingly double slot and overrecruit for perceived "safer" CSS and CS MOSs. As a result, the ARNG for example, is less than 80% strength on 11B10s.

What's more, unless Congress changes the law - and it won't - the USAR, ARNG and USMCR will not be part of this fight in any large measure after 2006. We mobilized our last USMCR Infantry battalion this summer and have pretty well blown through all of our combat battalions in the ARNG. With the 2 year COTTAD cap, USAR and ARNG troops that haven't hit the 2 year mark will be used as "human spackle" to fill the gaping holes in our force structure. Let's see ... 5,000 CPTs and 3,700 LTs short in the USAR alone. Declining enlistments, an increase of CAT-IVs and plunging ROTC enrollments.

What exactly are you defending, Dave?


Posted by: IRR Soldier... | Dec 4, 2005 3:41:50 PM

In light of comments made by all involved, if indeed the US Army and its related components are so understrength, and enlistment numbers are too, dwindling, how did the Recruiting Command achieve a 92% accession?
Being that we are all bright individuals, a 92% is a passing grade in our school systems, and by all rights, an A. We also, all know that recruiting accession target numbers are inflated for sustainment, not growth.
Its odd to me though, data regarding USAR Officers. A lack of officers in the Reserves is not near the grim picture you paint. Officers are needed to lead to a point, but when most combat leadership, and "make-it-happen" leadership is derivative of the NCO Corps, I fail to see what 3700 butterbars and 5000 railroad bars are going to do to affect specific MOS shortfalls. When is the last time you saw a CPT change the differential oil on an M998? ROTC is a broken program anyhow, so a declination of ROTC enrollments is inevitable. Increase in CAT-IVs did happen, but it is a closed window; most likely for a long, long time.

Again, I hear this "bring back the draft" mantra. How do we feel that this is lurking somewhere in the wings? The draft has been here for quite some time, it is called Selective Service. Don't take my word for it, but they Selective Service Administration posts its procedural policy on the internet. The draft is alive and well in modern day America. Read the policy.

Lastly, we in no way are out of bodies. We are out of the mass majority of society being intelligent enough to pass the ASVAB test. The National average score has dropped nearly 16 point in the last decade. This is not indicative of the military lowering any standards, it is indicative of our educational system failing on an enormous level. In 1999, the National Average ASVAB score for people in the 17-21 age bracket was 54. It is now 42. I am not in favor of activating Selective Service, as I am sure you have pulled out all your antiquated data from the Vietnam era, today's Americans will not be near the caliber of soldier any prior generations were. The generation of instant gratification and copping to whatever "disorder" might prevent service is a the wave that will wash our way of life away, much faster than terrorism can. We have become selfish, myself included as I am not above my own opinion, greedy, and lackluster. That is why we cannot continue to fight in Iraq at the same level. We have raised a Nation of quitters, and "Don't hurt anyone's feelings" children. As an IRR soldier, I would expect a certain amount of respect toward your own Armed Forces, not your flagrant attempt to propogate its destruction.

Posted by: The Bane of Your Existence | Dec 8, 2005 3:25:26 PM


My responses to your comments in order...

1) The 92% stat you throw out is a canard. You cannot go by an aggregate number provided by the DoD and paint it as a true reflection on the health of the combat arms MOSs. In fact, the recent GAO report I cited, dated 11/19/05 explains that while USAREC made 92% of its "mission" it overrecruited for perceived "safer" and "more marketable" MOSs to do this. While it brought in the bodies, the numbers recruited for the 11,13 and 19 series were far lower than that and as low as 70% for several 13 CMF jobs.

92% is not "passing" by anyone's measure - particularly when -10 level soldiers are being promoted to SGT at 48 months. The vacancies and empty slots in combat arms MOSs is real and growing.

Regarding the accession numbers being "inflated" - I disagree. The FY 2000 accession mission for USAREC is almost identical to the one for FY 05 and 06 - around 80,000. The notion that "an increase in the Army" is to be blamed for recruiting shortfalls is naive at best and willfully misleading at worst. It's the war stupid.

2) Regarding USAR/ARNG officer shortfalls. You must not have served in the same USAR and ARNG I did. The fact of the matter is that unlike RA units, the officers play a MORE vital role in unit health, training and leadership. In reserve units, the officers are often the SMEs on training management, PT and what's current in the Army. Why? they attend the same OBC as their RA peers and have the same level of training as an active duty officer. Not the same for the USAR NCO. There is absolutely no comparison to USAR/ARNG PLDC, BNCOC, ANCOC to their active duty counterparts - none. In fact, the majority of USAR/ARNG enlisted never return to their branch schoolhouse after AIT. Yes, that's right - there are "infantry" and "medical" 1SGs in the reserve components that have never set foot on Fts. Benning or Sam Houston since they were privates.

As retirements spike to record highs among NCOs in the USAR and ARNG, you bet your ass the shortage of officers will make things even more painful.

I love your attitude, especially re: maintenance. I don't know too many RA BDE commanders that would wish away the services their shop officers and SSA LTs provide because they can't change a differential. Weak arguments.

I'm not propogating the Army's destruction! I'm warning that we had better wake up to reality before it is too late. Yes, we are out of bodies - particularly in the USAR as we've blown through almost every 31B and 88M in the IRR along with almost all the EN LTs and CPTs we have.

Posted by: IRR Soldier... | Dec 9, 2005 10:14:26 AM

Warning us before it is too late? Too late for what?

You are correct, I never served in the USAR/ARNG you did. I NEVER did. I serve in the RA. Officers drive PT and training?!? Since when were officers subject matter experts? Never. FACT. Officers are trained by NCOs and always have been. OBC is taught by NCOs. NCOs Train the Force, period. So, I don't rightly know what dimension your USAR/ARNG experience was, but an LT is pretty useless on any given day.

Here is the problem, plain and simple. No matter how successful we are, YOU nay-say every possible thing. How can you claim to be a Soldier, Sailor, or Marine; when all you care to do is denigrate its function?

If you are so wise, and have so much foresight, why aren't you addressing issues at the Command level? Why are you supporting Counter-Recruitment? Rather than assist, you'd rather piss and moan?

Where did the default assumption come from? That we are doing the wrong thing, the wrong way, no matter what we happen to be doing? How did this become a Zero-Sum game?

You are right IRR Soldier. We can win on a battlefield any where, any day, any time, like we always have. But we cannot win a war of words, where the overriding assumption is that we are always wrong.

I cannot think of a single war, point in history, pick one, even any period of peace, that our military was the correct size, properly trained, correctly deployed, and the correct composition all at the same time. Then dig up every historical record, unofficial documentation, commentaries,whatever; and for every unbiased account, there will be three accounts by our revisionist historians and nay-sayers chomping at the bit to scream and yell how badly the United States Military has bungled things up.

We just can't win, because YOU and your Counter Recruitment cronies don't want to give us the slightest glimpse of a chance to win. As a Soldier, you know if you give us the most bleak chance of Victory, we WILL take it, and we WILL win. We've won countless battles, right, wrong, or indifferent, but we cannot fight this word battle. It is fruitless to argue any longer.

But if we are mucking things up so badly, why won't you get back in uniform and show us how to do it. Any of you involved in Counter Recruitment only bitch, gripe, and complain, but still lack the ability to get involved (JOIN) and correct the issues from the inside. Which is the only place you can fix it from. So if you want to join the 19D community and help us get back to strength, or know someone who can and will help bolster our "weak" CMFs, your support is appreciated and welcome. But until you do, you are just as much part of the problem as you are part of a solution.

Posted by: The Bane of Your Existence | Dec 9, 2005 2:11:42 PM


Posted by: Kudo's to "Bane" | Dec 16, 2005 8:13:11 PM

This program will bring out the WORST side of people in very difficult financial circumstances.

LOL, if their financial situation is so difficult, how will they ever be able to wait until AFTER graduation from AIT to get the money? Besides, if their choices are that bad, their recruits probably won't even graduate... and if no graduation, NO MONEY!

This reminds me, I thought I'd be so excited to see my bonuses after AIT but when I recieved them, I realized they were hardly more than a regular month's check after taxes. The Soldiers who would be recruiting will know this already, they've been there, done that!

Get real IRR, it's hard for me to believe that you "love" the military. The DRAFT, which you keep advocating, alone would RUIN most of the great energy we get out there already. Volunteering, in and of itself, acts as a GREAT filter. You're so full of it!

Posted by: ren | Mar 9, 2006 2:30:42 AM


Forgive me please, it's not fair for me to challenge your feelings about the US Military without really knowing you personally. My comment was a knee-jerk reaction, please forgive me for saying it. I have a LOVE-HATE relationship with the Army myself but try to not talk about the Army derisively in public, if I can help it. If it's not constructive, I try my damndest to reframe it.


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