Obama Health-Care Hikes Hit Military, Spare Unions; Vets Vow to Fight

By: Kenric Ward | Posted: February 29, 2012 3:55 AM
Allen West, Barack Obama and Tom Rooney

Rep. Allen West, R-Plantation, President Barack Obama, and Rep. Tom Rooney, R-Tequesta

Florida congressmen and veterans' groups on Tuesday blasted an Obama administration plan to double or triple Tricare medical premiums for active-duty and retired military personnel.

The sharply higher prices reportedly are designed to push service members and veterans out of the military's Tricare program and into Obamacare's insurance exchanges. The administration believes the move will cut Tricare costs by $1.8 billion in fiscal 2013 and $12.9 billion by 2017.

According to one congressional estimate, a retired Army colonel with a family currently paying $460 a year for health coverage would pay $2,048 under the new price schedule.

The plan would take effect after the 2012 elections.

"It is unconscionable, utterly disrespectful and obviously evidences the disdain the Obama administration has for our warriors, to whom he should apologize," said Rep. Allen West, R-Plantation.

West, a retired Army colonel, added that the Obama plan -- which does not raise the rates on unionized civilian employees in the Defense Department -- is larded with politics.

"President Obama believes health care should be free for his union cronies and entitlement-centered political base, but not for those exceptional men and women who serve or have served to keep us free," West complained.

Rep. Tom Rooney, a member of the House Armed Services Committee, also assailed the initiative.

“I am deeply disturbed by President Obama's plan to drive Tricare premiums so high that military retirees are forced out of the health-care plans we promised them and into the new entitlement programs created by Obamacare," said Rooney, R-Tequesta.

"Asking our troops and military retirees to shoulder the burden of Washington's overspending is simply wrong, and I will strongly oppose any effort by the president to break our commitments to our veterans by pricing them out of the health-care benefits they earned and deserve."

The 2.1 million-member Veterans of Foreign Wars, vowing to fight the Obama plan, issued this statement:

“A secure America needs a strong military, and whether one serves honorably for four years or 40, messing with military pay and benefits is a clear signal to the troops and their families that the budget is more important than people.

"That is going to seriously hurt recruiting and retention, and potentially end the all-volunteer force, because nobody wants to work for an ungrateful employer in a vocation as inherently dangerous as ours.”

On top of the premium increases, veterans would also be hit with a new annual fee for a program called Tricare for Life. And some benefits will become “means-tested," similar to social programs.

"This will be treating them like welfare instead of benefits for military service," said Bill Gertz, a national security affairs expert who broke the story on the Washington Free Beacon website.

John Hayward, a conservative commentator at Human Events, called the Obama plan "part of an overall strategy to dump as many Americans as possible into budget-blasting 'public exchanges,' which were already on course to cost at least $460 billion by 2019."

A Heritage Foundation study last year concluded that those costs could more than double if enough private-sector employers decide to wash their hands of Obamacare and shift their employees to the insurance exchanges.

"That study didn’t anticipate a tidal wave of military veterans sliding into the deficit pit," Hayward noted.

The administration's proposed budget would slash overall Pentagon spending by $487 billion.

The anticipated Tricare savings of $12.9 billion over five years represent a tiny sliver of the military's budget. Indeed, Gertz noted, it's even less than the $20.5 billion Obama's Department of Energy expended on green energy grants and loans, "80 percent of which went to companies owned or tied to Mr. Obama’s top fundraisers."

But for military personnel and veterans, the Tricare shuffle adds up to real money.

Obama's plan calls for increases between 30 percent and 78 percent in Tricare annual premiums for the first year. After that, the plan will impose five-year increases ranging from 94 percent to 345 percent -- more than three times current levels -- Gertz reported.

Retired Navy Capt. Kathryn M. Beasley, of the Military Officers Association of America, pledged a united front in fighting the proposed health-care increases, which would require congressional approval.

“We think it’s absolutely wrong,” she told the Free Beacon. “This is a breach of faith."

Contact Kenric Ward at kward@sunshinestatenews.com or at (772) 801-5341.

Comments (72)

4:17PM APR 10TH 2013
Delmar Williamson
10:47PM FEB 28TH 2013
We are to late. We had it good while it lasted.I could see thing getting out of hand with cost to fund. Man I never through the new cost would be so bad as it is now to be OCT.1 this year and the cost on enrollment is not known yet, just maybe what the out of pocket cost may be. Looks like the DOD will save all the money they need just on tricare!
Lyla Welday
3:48PM FEB 11TH 2013
Yes, thank you so much Obama Care. My husband who served his country is now being forced to purchase Medicare as his primary insurance. On calling to question his welcome to Medicare notice, he was told that Medicare is now required to be his primary insurance and his military insurance (Tricare Prime) is his secondary. Go figure we have to pay two insurance premiums now. If we don't take Medicare we loose the military insurance what an option, my husband is only 52 years and shouldn't need Medicare till well into his 60's.
Delmar Williamson
10:42PM FEB 28TH 2013
Look what is going to happen to all the young Vets, as for me I am to old to care for myself but the youg are going to be in so deep water, with the out of pocket cost, and to find A DR. that will even take it.
4:20PM JUL 8TH 2012
As you were:
I read it and wept. An E-8 vet, I am appalled that this nation, who stands as a bulwark for freedom, honesty, transparency values, and a host of other honorable positions, thinks that their military personnel are just like the herd of "entitlement Americans"... means testing?.. after what we did FOR YOU without hesitation? ... gawd, where does it end? We came...we contracted... we laid down our lives... and now you -- you pencil pushing desk drivers want us to give up part of our agreement so you can spend on social stuff that we can't afford, and we are going to sit for it. Think again Commander in Cheat, maybe where you come from.... they do things like this, but this is America, and we have honor and respect for our military here. Go home ASAP after the National Get It Together on November 4th and stay there.
At Ease.
10:34PM OCT 19TH 2012
Face it---- they DID NOT read it and we are now forced with defeating it. It was passed.
Ghosty Kips
9:21AM APR 16TH 2012
An active duty Army Col. makes a minimum of $5963.40 a month. With all else the military gives them, they can afford the $170/month. Bunch of whining primadonnas.
9:14PM JUN 29TH 2012
and an enlisted retirees? Disabled veterans? What have YOU done? Played Call of Duty? Real "tough" guy huh? Wimp poser...
4:00PM APR 9TH 2012
Obamacare probably will be UPHELD.

Yeah, I know, the 3 days of arguments will lead you to say that Obamacare is in trouble.

But is it?

Over the entire history of the United States, only very RARELY has the supreme court EVER shut down a signature presidential achievement.

We have to remember what the purpose of the supreme court is; that is, to review the CONSTITUTIONALITY of the law, and not legislate.

We also have to remember that the justices on the Supreme Court are highly intelligent individuals, and surely they are aware of the repercussions of their actions of shutting down a signature legislative act by a president.

Furthermore, we remember that when congressional acts have indeed been shut down, history tells us that the executie branch has the ability to increase the number of justices, to appoint justices on party lines, and to readmit an act that is stricken down.

The justices KNOW this.

We ALSO know that on the way to the Supreme Court, the Affordable Care Act has received very similar critisms from judges who were conservative and still upheld the act as constitutional.

Furthermore, before conservatives go crazy over Obama questioning the Supreme Court, let us also remember that President Reagan has criticised Judicial Activism as well, and the criticism of the Supreme Court is historically a REPUBLICAN idea (as was the health care mandate, ironically).

Let's look at the actual constitutionality of the act.
Chief Justice Roberts himself is known (and I'm paraphrasing) to have the philosophy that anything that "considerably" affects interstate commerce is something that the government CAN regulate.

All judges can reasonably conclude that LACK of health care insurance CONSIDERABLY affects the Health Care Market.

While 4 judges are pretty much in the bag on supporting the Act, Kennedy and Roberts are who we look at to swing the decision to UPHOLDING Obamacare.

Surely Justice Kennedy understands the argument of the government:

On questioning the content of the argument, "The government's argument [is] this -- and maybe I won't state it accurately. It is true that the noninsured young adult is, in fact, an actuarial reality insofar as our allocation of health services, insofar as the way health insurance companies figure risks. That person who is sitting at home in his or her living room doing nothing is an actuarial reality that can and must be measured for health service purposes."

And he knows that individuals without insurance ARE in the market:
"But they are in the market in the sense that they are creating a risk that the market must account for."

AND surely he understands the jurisdiction of the government:
"And the government tells us that's because the insurance market is unique. And in the next case, it'll say the next market is unique. But I think it is true that if most questions in life are matters of degree, in the insurance and health care world, both markets -- stipulate two markets -- the young person who is uninsured is uniquely proximately very close to affecting the rates of insurance and the costs of providing medical care in a way that is not true in other industries.
That's my concern in the case."

And even Justice Roberts understands the argument:
On responding to WHAT the government is regulating,
"I think you're just repeating the idea that this is the regulation of the method of payment. And I understand that argument. And it may be a good one."

And Roberts understands that this is DIFFERENT from any other market:
"Everybody is in this market, so that makes it very different than the market for cars or the other hypotheticals that you came up with, and all they're regulating is how you pay for it."

And Roberts understands the power of the government:
"Well, surely regulation includes the power to promote. Since the New Deal we've said that regulation in -- there is a market in agricultural products; Congress has the power to subsidize, to limit production, all sorts of things."

And Roberts further understands the differentiation of this health care market.
"No, no, that's not -- I don't think that's fair, because not everybody is going to enter the mortgage market. The government's position is that almost everybody is going to enter the health care market."

Clearly we see that the two justices that are the only two that we think have the ability to side with the democrats understand and perhaps even lean towards the constitutionality of the act.

If the Act is struck down, the Supreme Court KNOWS their reputation will be questioned (after Bush v. Gore and Citizens United).

Put all this together, and the idea that SCOTUS has very RARELY ever struck down a major legislative signature piece of legislation, and we come to a conclusion.

Obamacare is the future of health care in this country, and rightfully so.

4:26PM APR 10TH 2013
9:41PM JUN 30TH 2012
Very well said!! Hopefully everyone takes time to read your wise words.
Richard Raiche
9:40PM MAR 25TH 2012
Another example of the disdain that liberals have for the men and women of the Military.
9:52PM MAR 16TH 2012
So, a retired soldier with a family (of 4, I presume), would STILL pay less than a single man (me).
Seems fair to raise the rates.
1:24PM JUN 30TH 2012
I think they should pay nothing and you a dick
3:56PM MAR 15TH 2012
It's for this exact reason we need healthcare reform.
mike swann2
8:53PM MAR 7TH 2012
under bill clinton some militry personnel were on food stamps. Bush gave them all raise when he took office. Yet, this commie has in O-care, viagra for prison inmates, to illegals detainees coming here illegal can get hormones for trans gender operation. The babes can have an automatic abortion, prenatal, post partum, food, meds, housing according to ICE. This hog has cut medicare and our old are on a shoestring. I don't hld a grudge but how could my fellow americans been so blind to vote hilm. Sean Hannity told of O's life, his radical, comunist ties, O wrote 2 books on his life that told all. Anyone readling them wold know he hates this country.
4:31PM APR 10TH 2013
2:02PM MAR 7TH 2012
Liberals are Sickening Hypocrites! They protect & applaud the killing of innocent children through abortion right here at home, yet hold disdain for our military vets who place their lives on the line for the sake freedom from tyranny. Libs are horrified at a 100K people who did in Iraq/Afgahnistan the last 7 years of war in the Middle East While here at home over 7MILLION children died during the same amount of time!
You Bash President Bush for the wars, while Protecting & Applauding Clinton for Blindly Bombing the crap out of Iraq which killed far more innocent people, not to mention those in Serbia! Liberals Protect Obama for his role in Libya, his complete & arrogant disregard for the Constitution & Bill of Rights, his use of Force on Americans to buy Insurance that provides Free Abortion Pills, stomping on Religious freedom & Conscience protections, his disgusting disrespect for our Military men who are dying while he apologizes to our enemies for some burned books.....Obama has been a disgrace as a leader! He is corrupt, wasteful, and has done more to hurt America than to help us, yet Liberals believe he walks on water. God help America, and may He open the eyes of the Blind Liberal Hypocrites who curse the Blessings of the Country God has Blessed the most!
Phil Crean
6:35PM MAR 5TH 2012
I'm a retired veteran. If you knew how little I paid for Tricare you would agree to these hikes. I can also live a relatively unhealthy lifestyle with no rate changes. If I had a large family, I pay the same amount as someone with 2 kids.
Robert Lloyd
9:43AM MAR 2ND 2012
>the Soldiers, Airmen, and Marines that ensure your health is possible every day of your life.<<

How is killing innocent women and children in illegal foreign invasions ensuring my health? The military personnel have evolved into merely an organization to accomplice to murder.

Don't think you are doing me a favor.
Tyler Morgan
8:50AM MAR 3RD 2012
Really? As someone who recently returned from Afghanistan, as an infantryman, I don't recall killing any "innocent civilians". I DO however remember several occasions treating young children in our aid station who were a victims on insurgent grenades. I remember killing some [filtered word] who shot at me from inside a mosque. But can't say that I ever killed an innocent person...
5:40PM MAR 2ND 2012
the military goes where they are sent to do the biding of the goverment . So you blame the instermint for the operation. I belive you are very misguided
Retired Airman
12:46PM MAR 1ST 2012
As a 24-year, retired veteran of the United States Air Force, I am appalled at the acts of this President. I won't bother to refer to him as a Commander-in-Chief because he does not deserve the respect of those who have fought, paid the ultimate price or sacrificed their livelihood, safety, blood, sweat and tears to serve this great nation of ours. Military service, can in no way be associated with a normal job. And certainly, you don't have the same lackluster requirements imposed upon you as a civilian occupation. You work for a mere pittance of your worth, you sacrifice everyday at the expense of time with your spouse and children until you can't give anymore, you rise early and lead your personnel, equipped with the best taught leadership/behavior principles in the world, you gladly use the last five dollars of that pittance in your pocket to get a haircut to maintain the professional image of the armed forces and country you serve. Then toss in tens of back-to-back deployments to some of the most austere places on Earth, often working more than 18 hours a day until you drop...for years and months straight. Constant upheaval and complete moves of your family and belongings every 3-4 years to a new location to fill requirements. All along, scraping by and largely proud to be part of something bigger than yourself. Hoping and praying to live through it all and one day, God willing, be able to enjoy some of the"promised benefits" you paid dearly for through the blood, sweat, tears and sacrifices of yourself, your family and your brothers and sisters in arms. Unfortunately, we now are faced with protecting the liberties and freedom of a population to which, in my research, less than one percent have ever served or bothered to accept these sacrifices and wear so proudly the uniform of an American servicemember. So, your natural, uninformed answer is to continue to take from me and my family what I have so rightfully earned and fought for. I don't ask for much. Our government signed a pact with me at the ripe age of 18 when I took the oath to serve, raised my right hand and had the privileged opportunity to lead and serve with the most disciplined, morally true and value based sons and daughters our country has to offer. They recanted on the promise of free dental care more than a decade ago. The free medical care, well, I now pay for that too. Quit taking from coffee jar. All any of us retired/wounded servicemembers want is to take our PTSD, physical and emotional wounds, what's left of our eroded benefits and finally peacefully settle into the society we fought so fiercly to defend. We don't splurge on healthcare, we don't plaque the system. We simply get up everyday, lick our wounds and carry-on undetered like we always have. So I must ask...is it too much for me to ask for those who attack us and those administrations who wish for us to pay for their misgivings to kindly let us pass? No thank you requested or required. My military brothers and sisters have already laid our offerings upon the altar of freedom. Is your offering there beside ours?

On another note: A vote for Ron Paul will go a long way toward curbing the lobbyist-run establishment in D.C., and get our country back on-track. Then, we can all stop these unecessary attacks on each other and once again begin to place trust our government. Please get out and vote. Your country needs you!!
12:19PM MAR 1ST 2012
As a retired military enlisted member I agree with most of the comments about TRICARE increases being excessive. Although if anybody can afford the increases Col West can. If a tiered rating is established the actual scale should be raised for the lowest level. My retired military check with my civilian check comes nowhere near the amount Col West pulls in as a retired military member. Col West also greatly exagerates about the cost of civilian healthcare for civil service employees. All civil service employees who participate in the Federal Health Benefits Plan pay premiums ranging from $40 to $360 per pay period depending on whether they pay into a single basic plan or family High plan and whether they are enrolled into an HMO or Fee for Service Plan. They also have fees per visit similar to TRICARE Prime retirees. Even with the increased TRICARE fees many people at the upper echelons of the Pentagon still feel TRICARE is better than any private plan offered in the U.S. I am not a fan of President Obama, but he is not 100% responsible for our current situation. Both houses of Congress are major contributors to the current situation. Medical care for the active duty military members and their families is free except for when they reside outside the catchment area of a military treatment facility and have to participate in the TRICARE Standard program in the US. Overseas they have no costs at all whether they live in or outside of the catchment area of a military treatment facility.
3:04AM MAR 1ST 2012
To blame President Obama is akin to getting hit by a bus, waking up in a hospital a month later, and blaming the doctors and the nurses for the accident.

Instead of insinuating that it's President Obama's fault, you should blame Republicans who did whatever they could to funnel taxpayer dollars to their corporate buddies who made trillions of dollars in war profits, bad loans, and deceptive financial deals. Ronald Reagan tripled the national debt. and he started this financial mess when he deregulated Wall Street firms. Under George W. Bush, the national debt went from $5 trillion to $12 trillion.

Whether it is war, or bank bailouts, or tax breaks, or private prisons, or no bid contracts, or school vouchers, or food stamps, or security contractors, or the student loan market, or the privatization of social security, the goal of the modern Republican is to expose taxpayer dollars to the open market and let big business and corporations fight for it like kids collecting candy from a smash piñata. Republicans and even some democrats know that they will get their share of candy.

It is quite a dishonest and devious tactic to criticize unpopular unionized civilians when it is actually big business and corporations that screwed the soldiers and got the best deals.
2:23PM MAR 1ST 2012
Actually... If you want the facts, President Bush brought the USA to a period of positive balance. No president has ever has as many people employed with steady jobs (not just the Obama administrations idea of temporary jobs). Also, don't be fooled by the fancy bar chart adds that say unemployment is going down because the fact is that the number is going down because people have stopped actively seeking work and therefore are not classified as unemployed.
Raymond Pride
8:09AM MAR 1ST 2012
Sounds like the same crap that comes out of the mouths of anarchists. Get your own facts and stop spewing the liberal agenda.

50% of you don't pay taxes... Where's the free money? It comes out of my pocket and into the pockets of Obama supporters.
Sue Sharp
12:57AM MAR 1ST 2012
I strongly suggest that Obama get a new life. If he thinks for one moment that the retired military men and women will put up with his crap he is sadly mistaken. My husband served 30 yrs. in the military was in veitnam 3 times and is a diabled vet. I will help to fight this jerk 100% of the way. My husband fought and earned his benefits and I don't think that anyone should have the right to take it away from him.
Monica Hendricks
10:53PM FEB 29TH 2012
What I want to know is, why the people who think the military make so much money and have such good benefits are not standing in line to join? Oh, it's because they are not willing to die for what they believe in. As for the vets, when I have to go to the VA for medical treatment that is where I feel like I am, the Vet's office. Oh wait, my dogs get better treatment than I do so I am wrong on that comparison. Sorry.
Raymond Pride
12:12AM MAR 1ST 2012
Monica, Your are correct that folks have an inflated view of what our benifits really are.

However, I use the VA in Leavenworth KS regularly and not because I have to but because I have had nothing but good care from good caring people. Shame on you for an irresponsible statement like that disparaging the entire VA system. How ungreatful can you be.
9:00PM FEB 29TH 2012
Dean, i doubt your job or most 'union' workers have a DAILY threat of a bullet splitting your skull open; leaving wife and kids fatherless in an instant; sleeping in the desert or jungle at the lowest/highest temp possible; etc etc etc...now any of us can lose our life or deal w/ a tragedy at any moment, but it IS NOT a part of our daily job description. all honor and benefits to our military past/present/future
Raymond Pride
8:36PM FEB 29TH 2012
Keep Laughing.......

By the way Dean, most of us aren't retired Colonels and we got paid next to nothing for years. We were contracted to do a job in pretty crappy situations with specified benifits promised in the end for those who made it. We stood by our obligation to defend this country, now the country needs to stand by it's obligation to every service man and women.
10:11PM MAR 1ST 2012
So tell me, how much is that "next to nothing" military pay?
Dean Carlsen
7:41PM FEB 29TH 2012
I have to laugh at people calling Obama a socialist, while I am paying 12 times as much per year for individual coverage while the retired colonel will still be paying less than HALF of what I pay and is getting FAMILY coverage. All you military people have been getting paid with taxpayer dollars and you want to continue to get subsidized insurance paid for by the taxpayer.

The articel doesnt bother to mention what the union employees are currently paying, I bet it's a more than what the military are paying.
11:19PM FEB 29TH 2012
I guess the reason that your a union memeber is math has never been your friend. 12 times a much and haf as much HUHHHHHH??? Beter keep your job as a wal-mart greeter since your future isn't very bright...matter of fact neither are you
9:01PM FEB 29TH 2012
You ungrateful piece of [filtered word]. I will gladly meet up with you and give you a chance to "even" the score with this Vet!
Raymond Pride
8:38PM FEB 29TH 2012
Keep Laughing.......

By the way Dean, most of us aren't retired Colonels and we got paid next to nothing for years. We were contracted to do a job in pretty crappy situations with specified benifits promised in the end for those who made it. We stood by our obligation to defend this country, now the country needs to stand by it's obligation to every service man and women.
Rob Hawes
8:28PM FEB 29TH 2012
The TRICARE premiums do not include co pays and deductibles, which are on the average 33% higher than the private sector. BTW, how much blood have you shed for your freedom!
DJ Wood
6:15PM FEB 29TH 2012
Back when Caesars men thought he was taking advantage of them and not following through with
promised rewards and land, and kept extending their service (different issues than today, but still they were being wronged), some of his legions lay down their shields and weapons and refused to march. This included his favorites, the legendary 10th legion. Just saying.
T. Stover
5:17PM FEB 29TH 2012
Union members should think hard about Obamacare, if he does this to the military, unions are next. He'll take your vote and stick it to you, if he get's re-elected. Let's all pray that he does not get another term.
gayle johnson
4:57PM FEB 29TH 2012
i totally agree with gramE. i have paid into SS since i was 14. i went to the SSoffice and it was packed with people from other countries (Mexico) we need to get all of the lawers out of congress and replace them with accountants and businessmen. please VOTE.
4:55PM FEB 29TH 2012
4:20PM FEB 29TH 2012
WHEN does this insanity STOP with this power hungry, tax and spend administration?...In Novemebr I HOPE, or I'll become a Canadian citizen! I'm fed up and tired of all the broken "promises" that were given to enlist, then stay for 23+ years...

Terry K. Murphy
MSgt USMC Retired
1:15AM JUL 9TH 2012
I was just cruising through the news and found this. Too cold in Canada for you. HAHA
10:15PM MAR 1ST 2012
Maybe you ought to give John McCain a call; if you can't quite remember he is the one who put Tricare on the chopping block for retirees....and I mean the chopping block, not just increased premiums. If you think Republicans really care for you, think again.
paul holloway
4:06PM FEB 29TH 2012
I seem to recall when obamacare first came up, Obama said many times that Tricare will not be touched and the military health care is safe. Looks like another lie told.
Raymond Pride
3:27PM FEB 29TH 2012
I was drafted in 1969, ETS'd and then enlististed in 1972, served 22 years in the military with a contract with the United States that told me I would recieve retirement benifits consisting of retirement pay and medical care for life. What a bunch of lies. Our benifits have erroded and are continuing to errod because of a socialist/communist president. I won't call him a Commander and Chief he's a clown with an agenda to destroy everything American Servicemen and women have accomplished since 1776 and before. How this SOB got elected and plans to get re-elected is by giving the lazy ass 50% of people who occupy America and don't pay any taxes a hand out. Once Obama the slave master owns them (They are slaves to the govt) they (all races included) won't leave the plantation because they have no ambition to better themselves. Gimme, gimme, gimme........... How's he paying for it? By taking what we as Service Members earned and buying a constituency.
A. Sullivan
3:16PM FEB 29TH 2012
I served in the Army and Army Reserves for 18 yrs & have spent 35 yrs as a federal employee. Frankly, I don't see anything wrong with having the military folks pay more in premiums for health care...their civil service counterparts, a large number of whom spent time in a uniform, pay way more in health insurance premiums for the same standard of care (if not better care). Many of us pay roughly $3200 a year in health & dental insurance premiums , then add on top of that Long Term Care Insurance that's not cheap. By the way, we have to pay for all of it even once we reach the magic 65 and are forced to apply for medicare. Besides, a retired O-6 brings in around $75+ a yr in retirement which is more that a GS-13 with 35 yrs of service. So quit whining...
12:16PM JUL 8TH 2012
Tell you what, bud, I retired as an E8, if you somehow can make me an O6, I won't say a word about the increase in health care costs associated with TriCareFor Life. The way I see it is, I made a deal in 1956, to lay down my life for my country, come what may, wherever, whenever, however they asked me to do it... we made a covenant, a contract. Only the lowest of the low would steal that right, that genuine entitlement from a military man. The very lowest of the low. He has no pride in the military, he wants to destroy it and the country alongside it. He hates America. Proof: read his books. Gawd, read his writings ! The ignorant amongst us say, hey, he is black, and so on... he is for us, and our welfare. Well, dummies, do you want to vote him in next November and see? figures. OUT, i say, OUT. `
4:40PM FEB 29TH 2012
According to DoD stats, the average military retiree retires at an E-6 pay grade. The stats some like to toss around, as you have done, are the high retirement pay received by senior officers as an indication of "overpaied" military retirees.

Current stats also say civilian government workers, especially federal workers, receive more pay, allowances, and benifits than the average civilian counterpart.

As a teacher, my family would have had to pay more than that $3,200 out-of-pocket a year figure you site for health care, but being retired military (enlisted), it was less costly to buy my own supplement and pay for mine and my family's health care.

So, you too, quit whining about that "poor" GS-13. In today's non-government work-world, $3,200 a year for health care is a bargin.

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