Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Thanks, John

According to the Military Advantage Blog at Military.com, Senator John McCain of Arizona has indicated support for a proposal to cut military benefits:

The AP reports that McCain sup­ports Pres­i­dent Obama’s pro­posal to start charg­ing older mil­i­tary retirees a $200 annual enroll­ment fee for TRICARE for Life. In addi­tion, McCain urged the super­com­mit­tee to con­sider restrict­ing working-age mil­i­tary retirees and their depen­dents from enrolling in TRICARE Prime. McCain pointed out that the Con­gres­sional Bud­get Office has esti­mated that such a move would save $111 bil­lion over 10 years.

McCain also said he sup­ports the administration’s pro­posal for a com­mis­sion to review pos­si­ble changes to the 20 year mil­i­tary retire­ment sys­tem and the cur­rent mil­i­tary pay and com­pen­sa­tion model.

Not that we're surprised; look up "Rino" in the dictionary, and you'll find McCain's picture in the margin. But it's also worth remembering that Mr. McCain is also a retired Naval officer who spent more than two decades on active duty, including five-and-a-half years as a POW in the Hanoi Hilton.

Given his background, you'd think McCain would appreciate the sacrifice made by military members and their families. You'd also think that Senator McCain would understand that most military retirees get by on a pension of $1600 a month (after taxes) and increases in Tricare fees (and other expenses) put a big dent in their budget.

But then again, John McCain lost touch with the military rank-and-file a long time ago. He became intoxicated with power during his tour as a Navy legislative liasion on Capitol Hill and quickly segued into the ruling class after retiring--and marrying the richest woman in Arizona. Between his Senate health care plan and family fortune, Mr. McCain isn't too worried about changes to the military retirement system, or higher medical expenses for military retirees.

If you ask Senator McCain to explain his position, he'd probably say he's putting "Country First," to help resolve the nation's fiscal crisis. Gee...whatever happened to the mantra of "Leave No Man (or Woman) Behind," something McCain learned from his earliest days at Annapolis. By endorsing the Obama "reform" plan, Mr. McCain is leaving a lot of military members behind.

Thanks again, John.

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