The Senate and the House told Paul Ryan to stick his military pension cuts up his P90x ass this week when they both voted to roll back the provision in his budget deal.
Ryan defenders were quick to point out that he brokered the deal with Patty McMurray - a Democrat. So true, but when she got the chance to undo it she voted against the pension cuts. Ryan on the other hand, did not.
Further, Ryan is still yapping about why they are all wrong.
Ryan says military compensation is out of control.
“Compensation costs are hollowing out the Pentagon’s budget,” he said in a statement. “They are taking resources away from training and modernization — and putting our troops at risk.”A lot of people would agree that our military budget is nuts - however they tend to mention stuff like the $1.5 trillion we have spent on wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and fighter jets no one wants - not the pension for the fella who has done 4 or more tours of duty - which is the average for uniformed personnel.
In fact, most people will tell you we don't treat our vets nearly well enough. Cut their pensions after 20 years of service? Not a chance.
A funny thing the Siren noticed. Members of Congress get a pension after 5 years of service. Sure, they have to wait until retirement age to get it - but it will be waiting after your consultant and lobbying job is over. It's not a major concern for the 47% of Congress who are millionaires.
Military personnel don't get a pension until 20 years of service. 19 years, 364 days in? Nope, nothing for you. It has to be 20 years. For the nearly 60,000 homeless veterans - every dollar counts.
Now, guys like Ryan have been super successful in demonizing teachers and first responders and the kind of benefits they get after a career of service, but veterans? Not even the most die hard crank thinks the first thing you cut is military retirement when you've been on a tax dollar binge like Ryan has through the Bush years.
We believe the misstep is significant. Not the kind of thing that sells well as Presidential candidate or to the more than 400,000 veterans living in Wisconsin. They may have agreed to be willing to die for their country, but that doesn't mean we cheat them just because they didn't.