Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Drug Users Welcome

Secretary of Defense Carter is a joke and here’s his latest folly.  He wants to lower the standards for recruitment into the military (1).  What a great idea because that’s what we need – less qualified soldiers.  Specifically, Carter wants to relax standards on physical fitness and pot use.  Here it is,

“Among the benchmarks that will get new scrutiny: fitness standards, marijuana use, tattoo regulations and the military’s longtime reluctance to allow single parents to start military careers.

“As thousands of prospective recruits are now living in states where medical and recreational marijuana is now legal, Carter is instructing top personnel officials to consider pilot programs to “assess the feasibility and impact of updated standards” on the issue of “past marijuana use,”

“Defense Secretary Ash Carter has launched a sweeping review of the military's recruiting standards, saying current rules for screening new entrants may be “overly restrictive” and preventing America's most talented young people from joining the ranks.”

So, according to Carter, our most talented young people are overweight, pot users?  Wow!  An Army of overweight, pot users should scare the Russians and Chinese into submission.

What’s Carter’s fear?  What’s prompting his idiotic decision?

“Carter’s announcement Tuesday marked the latest round of his “Force of the Future” personnel reforms, which are driven by his concerns that the military today is ill-equipped to recruit and retain the top talent needed for future missions.”

So, Carter’s solution to being unable to attract top talent into the military is to lower the standards?  Now there’s some top notch logic.  Carter’s an idiot.  No wonder our military is in the shape it’s in.  I can’t wait until those overweight, pot users move up the ranks and become the generals of tomorrow.  That should be interesting.

Alright let me try to turn from mocking to a slightly serious tone.

Does anyone seriously believe that drug users are going to join the military and stop using drugs?  Of course not.  Drug users will continue to use drugs and drug use will become rampant.  How do military leaders say no to it after allowing acknowledged drug users to join in the first place?  This is going to be the 1960’s and ‘70’s all over again.

Just a reminder, pot is still a federal crime despite the unconstitutional laws passed at some state and local levels.  Marijuana is a Schedule 1 controlled substance under the Federal Controlled Substances Act.  Thus, accepting a recruit who acknowledges using pot is accepting a criminal who has violated a Federal statute.

Is lowering standards the way to attract top talent?  No, that’s idiotic.  The Marine Corps had this figured out long ago.  Their means of recruiting top talent was to market themselves as too good for you to join.  Their ads basically said that they didn’t think you had what it takes and they didn’t want you.  That approach ensured that only the best sought to join.  Of course, the Marines are no longer elite and now will accept anyone but once upon a time they knew better.

Every time I think the military has hit bottom, they literally lower the bar.  I weep for my country.

Now, having said all that, I’ll offer a partial solution.  I’m utterly against women and unqualified men in combat.  However, not all jobs in the military are combat.  In modern times there are many jobs that do not require any great degree of physical fitness at all.  I’m talking mainly about administrative and computing jobs.  I would have no problem with creating a separate branch or sub-section of the military that had no physical fitness standards.  Computer geeks and women can work these jobs to their heart’s content.  Of course, they would not be considered “soldiers” – that would be an insult to real soldiers.  They would be part of a support corps.  They would be valuable, often extremely so, but would not be entitled to be called soldiers.

America was built with the sweat and blood of tough men.  Lowering our standards is not the way to ensure that America remains great.


(1)Military Times website, “The military may relax recruiting standards for fitness and pot use“, Andrew Tilghman, 1-Nov-2016,


  1. Unbelievable!
    I would hope that young soldiers would be encouraged not to smoke tobacco so they can run better. Let alone any other substance, even if they are clean before joining up.
    As for non frontline troops, where is the frontline in this day and age? I think even Army pastry chefs should be fit enough to fight.
    Did you hear about the attack and attempted kidnap of an RAF man outside his base while he was out running? From memory he was some kind of technician.
    But when confronted by two men with knives( one of them much larger than him) he floored the larger of the two men, and the 2nd man then dropped his knife without a fight.
    I'm for everyone being as fit as possible and enforcing a minimum fitness standard.

    1. As far as non-frontline troops, I did not suggest that. I suggested a cadre of support personnel who would NOT be soldiers. They would be military personnel and subject to military order but would NOT be soldiers. They would work wherever needed, just as military employed civilians do now.

    2. I had a friend who was once in the 11th ACR, then went on to a Guard career later in life.

      He had an interesting idea; let the Army do Army things: infantry/armor/Helo CAS/ etc. Then have the guard get largely stripped of its combat arms like armor, and instead use those guys to do the logistics stuff that they were trained to do. I.E. a truck driver IRL is a truck driver on duty in the guard. A Systems Analyst IRL is a Systems Analyst in the Guard.

      His theory was that old middle aged guys like me could do stuff we were good at, while allowing the young guys at the pointy end of the spear to focus on that.
      He also said that it would still allow the guard to do the humanitarian stuff they do right now, and maybe take over those missions for the active duty military.

      I'm not sure if it would work out entirely, but it was an interesting idea.

    3. Sorry my misunderstanding
      My only reservation is that if these new type of military personnel were paid less( they shouldn't get as much money)would the modern cost conscious military's employ them at the expense of non frontline troops?
      I think it's very likely in this day and age.

    4. As to Secretary Carter's suggestion.... SERIOUSLY?

      Some stuff I don't mind. I don't care if an infantry soldier has tats on his arm so long as that arm can shoot.

      But the rest?

      I remember reading how the Army spent a ton of time and effort cleaning out drugs from the post Vietnam army, and how they worked very hard to restore fighting ability and esprit de corps.

      They didn't do it by lowering standards.

      But maybe having a ton of tanks across the Fulda gap can sharpen your observational skills.

    5. "My only reservation is that if these new type of military personnel were paid less"

      They should be paid whatever they're worth. It wouldn't be tied into soldier's pay because they wouldn't be soldiers. If a top computer analyst is worth $100,000 then pay him. That's the only way you'd get top talent.

    6. "But the rest?"

      As I've said repeatedly, we've forgotten what war is. The military has become just another social engineering program. We'll pay an enormous blood bill to relearn what war is when the day comes - and it always does.

  2. Keeping or making America great again aren't in this Ivy educated, career paper warrior's make up. He like everyone else in the Obama administration does not believe in American exceptionalism.

    Rather, Carter is making what he thinks is a business decision because the raw materials out there are scarce to build a regular force and the traditional sources for the military are drying up. An example is my own case. If my son were 17 today I would not have advised him to take that ROTC scholarship to become a combat arms officer like he has. I am a retired navy officer and my father before me was a paratrooper and his cavalry. Today, I can't wait until he can get out.

    In an all volunteer force, if you can't get the cream from proven genetic stock than you have to take what you can get... That is why automated, unmanned air warfare, robots and minimally manned ships like your beloved LCS (lol) are desirable to these "Ashton" types.


  3. Uniformed civilians, similar to what this guy suggests, a warrant officer system.

    1. Please don't post links unless they illustrate or support some point you want to make or some opinion you have. If they do, offer your thoughts. I'm not interested in some other website's thoughts. I want your thoughts.

  4. Not to get political, but Ash Carter works for President Obama. I wonder what direction or guidance the White House has provided on this issue.

  5. I am glad I no longer serve (am a former Navy line officer)
    If my father was still alive, 30yrs USN/MSC and 8 additional years as an adviser in I Corps, he would be as sickened by the direction this administration wants to take our military, as I am.
    AND the fact that Obama and Carter have never served makes it easy for them to believe our military is no different than any other job.
    It isn't now nor has it ever been but given they are ignorant to what defines our military, they are comfortable in turning it into a social experiment.
    Meanwhile they are also quietly identifying what installations etc. need closing, but no worries because it means more $$$ for all the 'refugees' they want to bring into America...and create same chaos as Europe.

  6. Although I have no use for A Carter. I think the rationale is that its harder to find people willing to volunteer who are qualified. My wife reminded me of the Vietnam war and McNamara's 100,000. Also stumbled on this article
    It discusses problems that Army recruiters were(are) having. Its obvious to everyone her that what this moron is looking into will end badly.
    Harry K

  7. SurfGW, I deleted your comments because they contain counterintuitive statements that are not supported by data. This blog is about data and logic. If you can cite some data to support the claims, feel free to repost.


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