Marine Corps top enlisted man says lower pay, benefits will make Marines more disciplined, less wasteful

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130502-D-NI589-210I know it’s been nearly 30 years since I was on active duty in the Marine Corps, but I don’t think things have changed that much since.  In my day, even talk of messing with a Marine’s pay or benefits was cause for a knock-down, drag-out fight.

But, American Military News said, the Marines top enlisted man, Sgt. Maj. of the Marine Corps Micheal Barrett told a Congressional panel that lower pay and slimmed-down benefits will make Marines more disciplined and less wasteful.

“Marines don’t run around asking about compensation, retirement modernization,” he said. “That’s not on their mind. As I talk to thousands of audiences, they want to know into whose neck do we put a boot next.

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“They want to know about what new equipment are we getting, are we continuing to modernize. Just because the budget sucks, does that mean we’re not going to get our new gear?”

American Military News added:

Barrett’s comments came in contrast to his counterparts in the other services, who conceded to senators that lower pay raises, scaled-back commissary offerings and smaller housing stipends would be problematic for many servicemembers.

Instead, Barrett argued that the lower quality of life would be beneficial to Marines.

“I truly believe it will raise discipline,” he said. “You’ll have better spending habits. You won’t be so wasteful.”
He made the point that Marines aren’t ones to whine and cry about hard times, and I get that.
But seriously, have Marines changed that much since the mid-80s?
Sure, Marines will adapt, improvise and overcome like they always have.  But we’re talking about pay here, not taking the next objective.
I’d love to hear from other Marines.  What do you think?
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