By Whisper, on April 23rd, 2011
A week ago, Mark Thompson posted a fairly myopic essay on the TIME website demonstrating (if anything) that he is not familiar with the concept of the United States being a maritime nation. To him, I would recommend a book written by a very smart man about the importance of a sovereign contemplating coastal geography in the course of national development. Most of us in the naval service consider it to be somewhat of a primer. Just because a near-peer competitor has developed a weapon that could potentially threaten our capital ships is no reason to mothball the fleet.
There are some gems hidden in the rough of the TIME article, but it was the mis-characterization of incentive pay and bonuses that ultimately led me to discard Thompson’s argument as unworthy of rebuttal.
Thankfully, someone did take the time to reality-check some of his numbers.
Later (with 800′ on the waterline and nicely making way), I look forward to exploring this further – but for now, let me say this: we are fairly compensated. From E-1 to O-6, your service men and women are making good money. The E-1 and the O-1 freshly out of high school or college may not be banking what their peers are initally, but within a couple of years they are comfortably exceeding their former contemporaries.
The bonuses and tax-free pay for those on the tip of the spear are (IMHO) just the way a grateful nation shows its appreciation for the less than 1% of the population that are at any given time actively putting some skin in the game. These “special pays” are not excessive and are not being abused.