US Military reveals stunning figures - National Security Risk?

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Thread: US Military reveals stunning figures - National Security Risk?

  1. #1
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    US Military reveals stunning figures - National Security Risk?

    Associated Press
    Nov 3rd, 2009
    By: Andrea Stone

    WASHINGTON (Nov. 3) -- Are America's youth too fat, dumb or dishonest to defend the nation against its enemies?

    The latest Army statistics show a stunning 70 percent of military-age youth are ineligible to join the military because they are overweight, can't pass entrance exams, have dropped out of high school or had run-ins with the law.

    So many young people between the prime recruiting ages of 17 and 24 cannot meet minimum standards that a group of retired military leaders is calling for more investment in early childhood education to combat the insidious effects of junk food and inadequate education.

    "We've never had this problem of young people being obese like we have today," said Shalikashvili, former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

    He calls the rising number of youth unfit for duty a matter of national security. "We should be concerned about how this will impact this overstretched Army and its ability to recruit."

    Shalikashvili is among dozens of retired generals, admirals and civilian Pentagon officials who have banded together as Mission Readiness: Military Leaders for Kids. The group, which includes former NATO commander and presidential candidate Wesley Clark, will appear with Secretary of Education Arne Duncan at the National Press Club on Thursday to urge immediate action to reduce dropout rates and improve the physical and moral fitness of the nation's youth.

    They will cite research that shows quality early childhood education raises graduation rates by up to 44 percent and reduces the odds of being arrested for a violent crime by age 18.

    Douglas Smith of the U.S. Army Recruiting Command said 2008 data shows about three in 10 youths have an initial "barrier to enlistment."

    Most aren't insurmountable. "If you're overweight, we tell you to come back when you've lost the weight. If you don't score well on the armed forces aptitude test, we suggest you study and take it again," he said.

    Between 2004 and 2008, the Army more than doubled the number of "conduct" waivers it granted to would-be soldiers with criminal or misdemeanor records. The loosened standards proved necessary in a time of war and amid a booming economy that forced military recruiters to work overtime to fill the ranks.

    The new warnings about a generation of couch potatoes comes just weeks after the Pentagon announced its best recruiting year since the all-volunteer force began in 1974. The economic meltdown and rising unemployment, combined with bigger military bonuses and benefits, enticed hundreds of thousands to enlist despite the inevitability most would be sent to war.

    The plethora of would-be recruits allowed the military services to be choosier after years of taking in more high school dropouts and those needing extra physical training to meet weight requirements.

    Recruiting may have gotten easier, but "the good times don't stay forever," warned David Segal, a University of Maryland military sociologist. When the economy recovers and young people are able to get jobs or can afford to go to college, the military will be faced with the same out-of-shape, ill-prepared pool of recruits as before.

    "Recruiting will get tough again," he said. "The trend line is clear: The youth population is getting less healthy."
    Molon Labe

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  3. #2
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    Re: US Military reveals stunning figures - National Security Risk?

    This is just one example of the consequences of not encouraging your children to be active and allowing them to spend too much time on line and in front of the TV or video games. I look at this story and just shake my head.

  4. #3
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    Re: US Military reveals stunning figures - National Security Risk?

    Heya, all!

    Interesting find, Great Shaggy! This sounds like one of those "filler" articles media likes to throw out every now and then. I seem to recall that Army was having trouble getting recruits and had relaxed the "criminal history" standards some, but several years ago. All I've been hearing lately was that all branches were meeting enlistment goals.

    As for the story behind the story, I believe it's mostly accurate. The entire US population has gotten more fat and lazy than it was. Youth today are used to getting things easy, and the entire population is "spoiled" into a state of inactivity.

    Many families need to have both parents working full time to get ends to meet, and the school system is designed to cushion fragile minds rather than toughen them up and make them strong. Of course, government will have you believe it's strictly bad-parenting and if only they got full control of the child would things be all right!

    People are more technologically adept now, but have lost some of the basic skills. Kids now can run circles around older people when it comes to setting up electronics, operating computers, using the internet, but aren't exposed to things like how to build a fire (dangerous exposure to naked flame and harmful combustion byproducts!) much less something like finding food and preparing it (cruelty and inhumanity to animals!).

    MTV and the Cartoon Network are more interested in having someone sitting on their fat azz watching them (contributing to ratings share) than in having healty, active people willing to potentially serve the greater good...

    Russ
    Proud son of Rose and Wes
    "Women uh... women sense my power and they seek the life essence." General Jack D. Ripper

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  6. #4
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    Re: US Military reveals stunning figures - National Security Risk?

    As one who suffered through three years of pure shyte as a Recruiter, I can tell you this is the truth. Although my experiences were in the late 90's, even then, 60-70% of the target population for the market in my AO were un-qual from the git go for the same reasons.

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    Re: US Military reveals stunning figures - National Security Risk?

    We'll need a certain number of fit, close-combat specialists. They'll finish what's left after the "couch potatoes" our enemies laugh at unleash basement and bedroom-controlled killer drones, using millions of hours of gaming "training".

    A large number of them are aboard orbiting weapons platforms right now. Yeah, I know, that's supposed to be classified, but why stress out people any more than they are already.

    The WOW episode on South Park? Ender's Game? Those are warnings......
    You are
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    When it counts---The Masao
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    Re: US Military reveals stunning figures - National Security Risk?

    Airdropping fat people outta airplanes on our enemies is illegal PD, damned entertaining to watch no doubt, but illegal.

    I'd bet that our enemies would surrender in about a day after having to clean up after that though.
    Ok, anyone who stands this tall and weighs this much get in that line by the plane, no basic training needed. Everyone else go get a haircut and a uniform, we'll be with you shortly.


    Saaaaaay did I just find an upside to fast food and the obesity issue?

  9. #7
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    Re: US Military reveals stunning figures - National Security Risk?

    Sounds Futuristic or from a Science Fiction Movie/Novel

    But if the trend continues (less human fit to be a soldiers). We will see a future of expendable autonomous machines or clones doing the soldiers/pilots job.

    And we as humans will be the operators, spectators or a victims of every war

    Just remember nothing is impossible if there is a need for it and money to fund it
    Last edited by incubus; 11-05-2009 at 18:39.

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    Re: US Military reveals stunning figures - National Security Risk?

    Actually I meant the "rated unfit" individuals were aboard orbiting platforms as wpns operators.
    The first weapons controller I saw at Ft Knox back in the '90s, was for firing a mast-mounted weapons system on a Humvee or FCS vehicle. It was pretty much a Nintendo controller. SciFi and reality don't have that much separation these days. To my mind, if you want to come out on the plus side of the column, you don't toss out anyone. Adaptability.
    You are
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    When it counts---The Masao
    - Ryan Bonaminio lived his life this way -

  11. #9
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    Re: US Military reveals stunning figures - National Security Risk?

    Quote Originally Posted by pukingdog View Post
    Actually I meant the "rated unfit" individuals were aboard orbiting platforms as wpns operators.
    The first weapons controller I saw at Ft Knox back in the '90s, was for firing a mast-mounted weapons system on a Humvee or FCS vehicle. It was pretty much a Nintendo controller. SciFi and reality don't have that much separation these days. To my mind, if you want to come out on the plus side of the column, you don't toss out anyone. Adaptability.

    Although I am a firm advocate for not lowering the moral or mental standards, I have always been an advocate of that concept you mention PD. Just because someone isn't fit to be a grunt, doesn't mean they could not serve in some capacity elsewhere. Plenty of jobs that could be performed CONUS, that do not require one to endure the rigors of humping rucks all over the world.

    Want to serve? Have a brilliant mind and can work out trig in your head, but confined to a wheelchair? No prob, we could put you in a staff/logistics/finance/communications or what have you position at a Post/base or higher level of organization. Go thru some modified initial training to get you up to speed on the daily workings of the military, customs n courtesies, UCMJ, etc. and then put you to work.

    Hell, many wounded vets are being allowed to stay on duty with missing limbs nowadays. Just because they cannot hump a ruck anymore, doesn't mean they cannot continue to serve in some capacity.

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    Re: US Military reveals stunning figures - National Security Risk?

    Quote Originally Posted by pukingdog View Post
    Actually I meant the "rated unfit" individuals were aboard orbiting platforms as wpns operators.
    The first weapons controller I saw at Ft Knox back in the '90s, was for firing a mast-mounted weapons system on a Humvee or FCS vehicle. It was pretty much a Nintendo controller. SciFi and reality don't have that much separation these days. To my mind, if you want to come out on the plus side of the column, you don't toss out anyone. Adaptability.

    I like my Idea better.

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    Re: US Military reveals stunning figures - National Security Risk?

    Quote Originally Posted by Brave Rifles View Post
    Hell, many wounded vets are being allowed to stay on duty with missing limbs nowadays. Just because they cannot hump a ruck anymore, doesn't mean they cannot continue to serve in some capacity.
    The early chapters of Starship Troopers, and is talked abou again later on, has this same idea. Anyone can join and put in a termof service, but what they do with you will depend entirely on what you're useful at. Of course, there was a voting franchise up for grabs in ST for anyone who served... But today's youth would totally work for the right to vote... Right?

    Right?
    "I'm no stranger to sarcasm, sir." Private Dexter Grif, Red Army, Red vs. Blue
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    Re: US Military reveals stunning figures - National Security Risk?

    i like Brave Rifle idea. there are alot of vets who are out, but did not want to leave. as for the young folks out there, i say prep yourself. if the military is your aim.

  15. #13
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    Re: US Military reveals stunning figures - National Security Risk?

    The requirement of service to obtain citizenship in the Heinlein novel was based on the changes which occured after a failed war against a Chinese empire. The heavy losses and massive numbers of prisoners taken undid current systems of government.
    The worthiness of "today's youth" gets called into question with every generation, and yet they usually end up fighting conflicts they did not start. As with other wars, this generation seems to have been found up to the call. At least that's what I've heard.
    You are
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    When it counts---The Masao
    - Ryan Bonaminio lived his life this way -

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