1/5th of military families are starving!!!

| August 10, 2020

Under the headline “Survey: One-fifth of Virginia Military Families Say They Don’t Have Reliable Food Access”, we’re told that 20% of military families around Hampton Roads, VA are “food insecure.” The Military Family Advisory Network runs this annual survey.

Why are our troops’ families going without food? We all know BAH/BAS procedures and rates. The commissary and BX/PX/NAVEX are always a cost effective option and rarely run out of necessities. Unit PT coordinators will be happy to point to the numerous examples of over access to food in our ranks. So just how are they determining this?

From the article;

They use a six-question scale developed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture that asks, for example, if in the past year you have eaten less than you felt you should because there wasn’t enough money for food, whether you’ve skipped meals for the same reason and whether you couldn’t afford to eat balanced meals.

If respondents answer affirmatively to at least two of the items, they’re considered food insecure. At five or more, they’re experiencing hunger.

Self-reported and terrible questions. This will sound like a Foxworthy segment, but;

  • If you one time over the last year ate a McD’s value meal instead of going to Outback for a Bloomin’ Onion and surf and turf, you might be food insecure.
  • If you one time over the last year ordered just a meal at Applebee’s and skipped the appetizers, you might be food insecure.
  • If you one time over the last year ate a lunch consisting of a cup o’ noodles from the vending machine instead of going and getting a good meal, you might be food insecure.

These “experts” come up with similar statistics on children’s access to food nationwide. Won’t someone think of the children?!? School breakfast, lunches, and EBT keep kids eating just fine.

There are certainly many junior enlisted military families having trouble making ends meet. They are not, however, starving.

Full article; Military.com

Category: "Your Tax Dollars At Work", Military issues, Navy

Comments (153)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. MI Ranger says:

    Where is Hampton Roads, CA? I know there is one in the Virginia area, but last I checked their initial is VA, but then again they are kinda turning commy like Kalifornia!

    It is a real shame to let an open bag of Doritos go to waste!!!

    • Mason says:

      You guys don’t let me get any typos. 😉

      Fixed. Thanks.

      Now I see another one. “Surf and turd” is probably not on the menu at Outback.

      • AW1Ed says:

        They’re letting you off lightly, Mason. Enjoy it while it lasts.

      • Ex-PH2 says:

        “surf and turd”? That was on the menu at Bainbridge, and then it showed up at Orlando. It’s real, y’know, not just some seaborn legend.

        I gave up and went to the nearest Burger King.

  2. SFC D says:

    Bad shopping and meal choices does not equal food insecurity.

    • thebesig says:

      Exactly. They’ve been pointing this out since the 1990s. It may have been pointed out since before then as well.

      I did two years as a military disbursing officer in the early 2000s. The number of service members who couldn’t live within their means… And who weren’t financially responsible… Was atrocious.

      Too many didn’t discipline themselves to the “needs” versus “wants” concept. To add damage to injury, their leadership didn’t care about giving their troops a clue about how to manage their finances.

      As Disbursing Officer, I held cash at personal risk. When they, or their wives, bounced a check at the commissary or PX, the check came back to my office and it counted against cash on hand. We held check cashing services. When a check came back with insufficient funds, it counted against our cash on hand.

      If I didn’t recover that cash, I’d be on the gun to pay that money out of my own pocket. I didn’t play games when getting this money back. Thankfully, I didn’t have to pay any of my money because these folks couldn’t manage their money.

      One of the things that I did was do up a counseling statement. It’s during the counseling statement portion of the process that I find out how much of a bonehead the person, or his wife, was with regards to money.

      This wasn’t simply a, “Ooops, I didn’t know that” kind of situation. Many of these folks knew that their check was going to bounce… They just had to have whatever it was they thought they couldn’t do without.

      • SFC D says:

        “Too many didn’t discipline themselves to the “needs” versus “wants” concept”.I had to spend wayyyy too much time as a 1SG trying to get that through to the troops. Priorities, people.

      • A Proud Infidel®™ says:

        “Too many didn’t discipline themselves to the “needs” versus “wants” concept.”

        Amen to that, I don’t know how many times during a Payday Weekend in Columbus GA I’d see some lower twentysomething couple pull up to a liquor store in a brand new car with a baby in tow to blow a bunch of money on booze. During my AD days I was a Bachelor and saw a few fellow Joes in the barracks be flat broke just a few days after payday as well!

      • rgr769 says:

        Back in the Army of the olden days (1960’s), everyone was paid in cash. So, when the money ran out toward the end of the month, everyone who couldn’t manage their money was eating in the mess hall, even on weekends.

        One of my extra duties was company payroll officer. Division Finance used to give me a paper grocery bag with about $70K-$80K in it. I drove from Bad Kreuznach to Mainz with the bag sitting on the floor of my POV. I felt my POV was less conspicuous than a military vehicle. It was also the only time an officer was authorized to carry a loaded 1911 in garrison.

        • timactual says:

          “from Bad Kreuznach to Mainz ”

          509th? I was in 2/13 (Sandhofen) in 66-67.

          I always ate in the mess hall–money is better spent on Bier. And, of course, the wonderful variety of other potables the Germans do so well. As a young, stupid, “grasshopper” I was always broke two weeks (or less) after payday after a couple of unofficial trips to see beautiful downtown Mannheim.

    • Green Thumb says:


      I have seen Joe and Joe’s wife WASTE food and money like it was nobody’s business.

      As I Private in the mid 90’s, I made right around the poverty line. Rarely did I have discretionary income. Eating out (off post) was a treat. Thank God for the $1.60 breakfast and my packed lunch.

      • timactual says:

        Never thought of myself as poor while I was in the Army. Then again, when you are single it’s all party money. Did my poverty tour as a civilian. Working without a net, so to speak.

  3. Jay says:

    I work in the eligibility/intake at my local Department of Social Services outside a large military base. You would not BELIEVE how many military families I have come in saying they do not have enough money to pay bills. Yet when I pull background info and look at the evidence provided: most recent iPhone, 2019-2020 vehicle for servicemember AND spouse (and spouse doesn’t work), name brand purse/accessories…..

    It never ends…..I had one lady tell me, “You don’t know what it’s LIKE to support a family on a military pay check!”

    Stupidity knows no rank: i’ve had everyone from E-1 all the way to O-5 come in here with the same sob story.

    • Jay says:

      Edit: I determine eligibility for food stamps. That might’ve been helpful to know given the subject of the article.

    • Ex-PH2 says:

      Okay, Jay, tell those bimbos to try living off base in Alexandria, VA, on a 1968 enlisted’s paycheck.

      What a bunch of whiners.

      • Jay says:

        Well…can’t really do that since I wasn’t ALIVE then…..

        But when you have today’s married E-2 under 2 years grossing 1942.50 in base pay, 1248 in BAH and 372.71 in BAS, and the average rental rate for a 2BR apartment in this town is 718? Yeah, it’s hard to drip sympathy.

        • rgr769 says:

          For comparison, as a newly minted 2LT, my base pay was $305.00 per month.

        • eric (the OC Tanker) says:

          $330/month 1975 as a E-1 before deductions. Man, the wallet was fat then/s/.

          As a E-6 over 18, my base was around 2000/month. retired th 1995.

          • David says:

            Think you may be off…E3 base pay 1976 $300/mo.
            BTDT. Did go up to $330 in ’77.

            Some of the above stories remind me of a sergeant who worked for me in ’85. Had four stereos in one year: buy one, make a payment or two, pawn it and party. Repeat quarterly. Somehow he kept getting financed.

  4. penguinman000 says:

    Service members and their families have access to so many resources it’s not even funny. Fleet and family service, Navy Relief, commissary, exchange, base housing, etc… One can learn to create a budget, get a financial counselor, budget for the child your wife is pregnant with, etc… There’s even tons of recreational stuff at low/no costs. Gyms, movie theaters, performances, trips, etc… Lots to see and do without the need for a cash outlay.

    Without fail, every single time I saw a Sailor or Marine have issues with food, housing, or transportation the service member/spouse/family member consistently made stupid decisions. Maybe stay in base housing as an E3/4. Maybe don’t get that mustang with 29% interest. Maybe don’t go to a payday lender to get $$ to spend at the club. Maybe, just maybe, don’t be a dumbass with your money.

    You know, without a doubt, what your income is going to be every single paycheck. You know without a doubt what your pay raises are going to look like.

    Sailors that have fiscal issues need to be guided (with a big stick if necessary) to the plentiful resources available if they are having money issues.

    I’m intimately familiar with the Hampton Roads area and what resources are available. There is zero reason for a Sailor to have food insecurity issues in that regions specifically.

    • Jay says:

      penguin: its tragic. Its tragic because it’s COMPLETELY avoidable. A LITTLE strongarm guidance in the beginning will save a LOT of headache in the long run.

    • MI Ranger says:

      I remember talking with the base Finance folks about their worst case. They told me about a CPL who was Puerto Rican. When he came in for his ETS counselling they checked his pay due. Apparently he had not been getting paid since basic training. He had come in to gain his citizenship, and just assumed since they provided barracks to live in, and a chow hall he was not due any. He would occasionally write home for some necessities, but he had been visiting the USO and getting sundry bags for his daily cleaning stuff, he would watch movies and read books at the post library or Day Room. and exercise at the gym. At the end of his enlistment, he was due a little over $100,000 so he went home and started a nice business after becoming an American Citizen.

  5. Veritas Omnia Vincit says:

    This might be the actual survey module used for determination of security or lack thereof…


    • Hack Stone says:

      Hack Stone located the survey they used for troops in the barracks.

      I’m going to read you several statements that enlisted troops have made about their liberty situation. For these statements, please tell me whether the statement was often true, sometimes true, or never true for (you/your platood) in the last 12 months—that is, since last (name of current month).

      1. The first statement is, “The lap dance that (I/we) bought just didn’t last, and (I/we) didn’t have money to get more.” Was that often, sometimes, or never true for (you/your platoon) in the last 12 months?
      [] Often true
      [] Sometimes true [] Never true
      [] DK or Refused

      2. “(I/we) couldn’t afford to buy a pitcher when it was our turn.” Was that often, sometimes, or never true for (you/your platoon) in the last 12 months?

      o [] Often true
      o [] Sometimes true
      o [] Never true
      o [] DK or Refused

      3. In the last 12 months, since last (name of current month), did (you/you or other POGs in your platoon) ever cut the size of your Copenhagen dip or skip out on meal tabs because there wasn’t enough money for tattoos?
      [ ] Yes
      [ ] No (Skip AD1a) [ ] DK (Skip AD1a)

      3a. [IF YES ABOVE, ASK] How often did this happen—almost every month, some months but not every month, or in only 1 or 2 months?
      [] Almost every month
      [] Some months but not every month [] Only 1 or 2 months
      [] DK

      4. In the last 12 months, did you ever consume less alcohol than you felt you should because there wasn’t enough money for the 3:00 AM Waffle House run?
      [] Yes [] No [] DK

      5. In the last 12 months, were you ever sober but didn’t drink because the 1st Sgt threatened to send you to Rehab again?
      [] Yes [] No [] DK

      [End of Six-Item Liberty Security Module]

  6. Slow Joe says:

    I have come across a few JEMF (junior enlisted military families) that really made feel uncomfortable.

    One had two brand new sporty cars, but couldn’t afford to pay the bills and got into debt. The interest on the cars was like 25 percent.

    Another, living on post, the wife thought the commissary was too far, and bought most of their food at the sandhill shoppette, where everything is more expensive. Also went into debt.

    And yet another got a loan to go out to restaurants and clubs. The dude told me exactly that. And the wife was pregnant and smoking cigarettes like a smokestack.

    What they all got in common?
    They all said the Army doesn’t pay enough.

    • Mason says:

      thought the commissary was too far, and bought most of their food at the sandhill shoppette

      We’ve all been there, but to do all your shopping there? That’s just plain stupid.

      • Green Thumb says:

        I used to love the AFFES exchange card. The STAR Card.

        15% + interest.

        The bill makes it your mailbox before you get home from shopping.

        My favorite thing as a Officer was the stack of those motherfuckering debt letters every month from them that were delinquent to Soldiers in my platoon. Hell, the CO would just stack them by platoon.

        That was how bad it was. Joe has cash. The STAR card has finance options. Joe has no more cash.

        Nothing more rewarding as a Officer and SSG and above as telling a Soldier (NCO’s and some Officers to boot) that they were in debt. Usually to the ones that kept them in buisness.

        I love the PX Mall. All brand name and no cash down!

        Just calling it like I see it.

        • USMCMSgt (Ret) says:

          Before it was the STAR Card, it was the “Deferred Payment Plan” (or DPP for short.)

          Younger Marines referred to it as “Don’t Plan to Pay.”

          • A Proud Infidel®™ says:

            OH, and the troops who got a “No Pay Due” because of their unpaid DPP…

          • MI Ranger says:

            I thought that was only for military clothing? You had the option to put it on DPP or Star Card at Clothing and Sales!
            You know, because you always needed a new uniform before your yearly clothing allowance came in…especially boots. Then deployments happened and we got it all for free!

          • SFC D says:

            When I came in (1987) DPP was no interest, overseas only, and a limited amount based on DEROS. The STAR card seriously ruined some otherwise good Soldiers. AAFES cancelled mine because of lack of use. I only used it for uniform items, and after 911 pretty much everything I needed was issued in great quantity.

            • USAF RET says:

              Had STAR Card once. PCS’d and bought a new house (1st time) needed fridge, washer, dryer. STAR card had a deal that 1st purchase was 20% off and free delivery. Made purchase, paid it immediately and shredded card

    • Green Thumb says:


      I have seen it too.

      Sad but it is difficult to teach people common sense, especially if a dependapotamous is in the mix.

      I appreciate the intent and the heart behind the article, but I am uncertain if the creator of the survey really knows the ins and outs of the military.

      • SFC D says:

        Before anybody tries to cancel GT as a sexist, I will testify before congress that dependas come in all sexes and genders, whatever that count is up to. Dealt with a couple males of the species, only way I could stop myself from kicking their worthless asses was by preventing the detachment commander from kicking their worthless asses.

        • Jay says:

          DependaBros and TricareaTops….the worthless knows no gender.

          “Im just working until he gets his business off the ground.”

        • Green Thumb says:

          Thanks for the shout out defense.

          Yes, I have seen some sorry ass dudes both as dependents and as Soldiers.

          • rgr769 says:

            I guess I was lucky as I never had a dependapotamus. My lovely wife was an LT nurse and always employed. Then she didn’t get pregnant until after we left AD and I had a part-time job as a security guard. So I never had these financial problems.

            • Green Thumb says:

              Most Officers try to marry teachers and nurses.

              They can be gainfully employed anywhere.

            • timactual says:

              ” Then she didn’t get pregnant until after we left AD and I had a part-time job as a security guard. So I never had these financial problems.”

              I don’t know if you meant that to be funny, but I laughed my butt off when I read that last sentence. Unless your security guard job paid a helluva lot more than my security guard job.

      • timactual says:

        “, but I am uncertain if the creator of the survey really knows the ins and outs of the military.”

        “Food insecurity”? I doubt the creator knows the ins and outs of civilian life, much less the military life.

    • timactual says:

      That’s what happens when you “hire” adolescents with no job/life experience. They start to think they are grownups and get married and incur other responsibilities without knowing a freaking thing about how to handle any of them.

  7. Hack Stone says:

    That money is needed more to finance all of that particle wood assembled furniture financed from Devon Home Center. If you ever looked at any of their flyers, they always seem to be located just out the gate of major military installations. What a coincidence.

    • RGR 4-78 says:

      What the hell is wrong with cinder blocks and 1×12’s until you can afford better.

      • Anonymous says:

        “Wha, you can do that?!” the broke dorks say.

        • rgr769 says:

          I used black spray painted ornamental cinder blocks and stained oak planks to create my first entertainment center back in the day. I guess some folks are just incapable of imagining creative solutions.

          • Mason says:

            Now they’ll pay some hipster $300 to make them a “rustic” and “urban” shelf made out of cinder blocks and wood planks.

      • MI Ranger says:

        Or milk crates…borrowed from the DFAC!

    • Honor and Courage says:

      The same goes for that 2500, set of tires and wheels! That were not needed at all! Priorities are out of whack! They need to go back to once a month pay, and they would have to learn to manage money!

      • MCPO USN says:

        What’s worse now is that they will rent you the wheels. You can change to new ones every month when you get tired of the old ones. As you guessed, not a cheap option, either.

    • timactual says:

      Back in the olden days some vendors had booths in the lobby of PXs and EM clubs. Very convenient. And I am sure the ones in the EM club were especially profitable. I did my part to prove it.

  8. KoB says:

    What ever happened to “personal responsibility for your actions”? Oh, forgot…they didn’t come up like me, VOV, and a number of others on this site. When you find yourself in a hole…quit digging! Then you do what you gotta do to support yourself…AND your family.

    Not just military members with these problems, plenty of them in the civilian world too. Most of it if from someone enabling the person, or bailing them out, all of their lives.

    • Veritas Omnia Vincit says:

      Indeed having nothing and being comfortable with that makes saving money for what matters easier. We never ate out because we didn’t have money for that shit. It never occurred to me to go into debt for good times…as a result I save nearly every nickel I earned in the military when I left I had first, last, security and cash for a new car no questions asked and money for living expenses for as long as I needed in finding work.

      The only time I take on debt these days for anything substantial is when they are offering zero percent interest deals and prices that are no different today than they were before the advertised zero percent. In those situations taking the debt costs nothing to your wallet and keeping the liquidity benefits you more than the car or appliance dealers.

      If things change you can always pull the cash and pay the balance, otherwise let your liquid cash work for you as often as you are able to put it to work.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yes, that’s “racist” and oppressive now, comrade!

  9. OldManchu says:

    Ranger school candidates are very, VERY, food insecure.

    • rgr769 says:

      Absolutely! I once hoarded a can of C-rat peanut butter I liberated on a raid in Florida at Elgin.

    • MI Ranger says:

      Ranger School is what got me out of debt! I came in to the Army with credit card debt, and signature loan. When I went to Ranger School I asked my Mom, to pay my bills for the three months I was supposed to be in Ranger School. She took one look at what I had for bills and said “what the heck are you doing!!!?” She was also managing some money for my sister who was a school teacher in Mali Africa at the time. She had her “loan” me some money to pay off the signature loan (much better interest for both of us), and then zeroed out all my credit cards and got rid of them. I graduated Ranger School, after an extra month in the mountains, with zero debt, a sister who was very happy to be my loan shark, and a Mom who wondered how I was wasting all my money but took pity on me because I looked like a concentration camp survivor!

    • timactual says:


  10. OldManchu says:

    I saved 50% of every single paycheck during my 3 year enlistment. From E-1 to the coveted E-4.

    Had a nice little wad of cash upon ETS as a 20 year old. I thought I was wealthy and living large on those paychecks. Had no problem at all with the chow hall and all the free food.

    Not to mention the upcoming GI Bill / College Fund.

  11. Roh-Dog says:

    When you see the Great Dependopotami in full food insecure mode; run, hide and protect your small children, pets.
    You have been warned.

  12. Jay says:

    When the wife and I decided to start having kids, I was an E-6, been in the Corps a little over 13 years. She decided to stay at home mom it because her paycheck would’ve just gone to pay for childcare (we lived away from base, no CDC). As our family grew, so did the expenses, naturally but we still lived within our means. My Marines used to laugh at my car: it was a 1998 Ford Escort ZX2 with a sunroof, spoiler, and bitchin sweet 6 disc changer in the trunk (keep in mind, this was 2012-2017). I used to tell them: Laugh all you want fuck nuts. It’s paid off, the insurance is about 12$ a month and if pushed this thing off a cliff today, i’d be out 50$, and that’s counting the 20 in gas I JUST put in it….

    I owned a house, where my BAH paid it all, including the utilities (SHOCKING!!), I had savings, and we could afford to splurge on pizza and a redbox movie on friday nights. Sometimes I miss those days

    • Veritas Omnia Vincit says:

      Well played, same here…

      I’ve been fortunate to have a decent civilian career that I took some risk in achieving. But we’ve always been frugal.

      Now folks think I’m wealthy because I have a decent little sailboat in a fancy marina…I explain it’s all how you choose to piss away your money…I spend mine on sailing and the things that go with it, they spend theirs on dining out each night and vices they can’t do without…

      We choose the lives we wish to lead one way or another.

      Nicely done to own your own stuff and recognize the value in that so early on.

      • Jay says:


        Oh, I was an idiot as a young e-tool. It took years of stupidity and a divorce before I finally unfvcked myself. If I knew THEN what I know NOW? I’d be retired already and sitting at home on my ass instead of working another job after 20 years in the Corps. As it stands, I lucked into a job where I can take ANOTHER retirement check after 20 years. I’m pumping 2 extra mortgage payments a year into the house and should pay it off right when I retire for GOOD. If I can’t make it at age 58 with 2 pensions, a 401K and NO mortgage? I made some SERIOUSLY bad decisions…

  13. A Proud Infidel®™ says:

    It affects Single Servicemembers too, I saw it where PVT Snuffy JUST HAD TO outspent PVT Jones to see who had the more badassed ride as well as PVT No Sense buying a 15 year old Camaro with 120+K miles with a new lower end stereo and a fresh cheap paint job paying about 40% interest and it got repo’d a few months later when he was a dat late on his payment!

    • Jay says:

      Not to mention the ‘rent a rim’ upgrade joint outside the front gates.

      • A Proud Infidel®™ says:

        Or the store in the Peachtree mall in Columbus GA where the Salesmouths said one didn’t have to pay, all one had to do was sign a Payday Allotment form!

    • SFC D says:

      I always had to laugh at the PFC driving the $1500 car with the $5000 stereo system.

      • A Proud Infidel®™ says:

        A shady salesmouth’s wet dream come true!

      • Green Thumb says:

        Had one buy a Beamer on credit (600+ a month payment). Dude parked some cash in his bank account to make him look “stable”. They repoed it about four months later once 1SG told him to quit parking it on post.

        I guess it beats Fast Jack Auto Sales where you get max insurance payment and car payment on the 2000 Ford Aerostar Mini Van with a ton of bondo and cigarette burns and when you crank it up make a left (more or less the only way it will go – especially if you let go of the wheel) to drive it off, it sounds like it has the flu.

        • Hack Stone says:

          Semper Fi Motors in Jacksonville had green 1968 Dodge Station Wagon. “$50 Down, $50 A Payday. Great Swoop Car’. That would be circa 1986.

          • A Proud Infidel®™ says:

            Sounds just like many a used car lot on either Victory Drive or South Lumpkin in Columbus GA in the early 90’s!

      • Green Thumb says:

        Jamming some Boombastic no less and all leaning over and shit out of the driver;s side window with the Ranger hat parked up the back rear windshield.

      • Anonymous says:

        Yugo with “The Club”… but at least it was paid-for.

  14. Ex-PH2 says:

    I only have food insecurity when I run out of ice cream and Klondike Bars, and maybe raspberry sorbetto.

    • OldManchu says:

      What would ya do for a Klondike Bar? 🙂

      I could really go for a bowl of ice cream right now after reading this!

      • 5th/77th FA says:

        Doing rather well on the ice cream at the moment. K Roger had Breyers on that 2.99 deal. Got six assorted flavors. I am very very low on cookies tho.

      • Ex-PH2 says:

        You want a cookie recipe this week, 5th/77th?

        • 5th/77th FA says:

          Recipes are always welcome, but what I had in mind was more along the lines of introducing my ice creams to your cookies. That six pack of Breyers took up homesteading in the frigidaire freezer locker with 3 Turkey Hills and 4 No Bunnys.

          If my damned road trip for this summer hadn’t gotten trashed was looking at making that happen. Looked at cutting a corner of Cheeseland to find Skyjumper. Have been to Alton but not to Camp Douglas Site. Was thinking you were between the 2 in south central Illynoise. Is crossing state lines to introduce ice cream and cookies a violation of the Mann Act? A friend needs to know.

        • E-PH2 says:

          Nope, not in south central Illini. Well away from that. I’d be in Kentucky if I had to go that far south.

          • KoB says:

            ‘K. Kaintuck is nice, for the most part. Ft Hard Knocks sucked back in ’71, but my trips thru there since we did good. Laid over in Hopkinsville in ’15 to specifically see the Trail of Tears and Jeff Davis Birthplace. Laid over near Alton the next day to check out the POW Cemetery and Cahokia. Had looked at routing thru Central IL this past year and possibly doing Camp Douglas Site. Some Grandpappies and Grand Uncles were there between Sep 1863 and July of ’65. GPappy & ’em walked all the way from there back to South Central GA. I’ve got the buck n ball round ball they took out of his leg a few years before he died in a shadow box. Co C 55th GA.

    • Hack Stone says:

      Have Klondike Bars been declared racist yet? How about renaming them Klonlesbian Bars?

  15. Buckeye Jim says:

    Not so much with military personnel, but it always amazes me to see EBT/welfare/other receiptiants with multiple tattoos. That “art” is not inexpensive and it is obviously not essential (with exceptions for carnival workers and convicts).

    • Jay says:

      The irony of people applying for EBT pumping dollar after dollar into the vending machines here is not lost on ANYONE. Funny thing is, we do basic research and find ‘self employment’ history of people doing hair, tattoos, home/auto cleaning services on FACEBOOK. People advertise it themselves….them clam up when we ask about it.

      “Who the hell told you I did that??”

      “We are not at liberty to discuss our sources”

    • Mason says:

      Remember a few years back when Missouri outlawed using EBT for things like tattoos, lottery tickets, booze, and cigarettes? Were called racist for it. My question is why in the fuck was that ever legal!?

      • A Proud Infidel®™ says:

        Just like when the liberals went batshit over welfare recipients being required to take a drug test!

  16. Hate_me says:

    After buying a sports car for both yourself and your former-stripper wife, as well as providing for her first two kids and whomever’s child she’s currently pregnant with (not to mention her four-pack/day smoking habit and your 12-drink/day budding alcoholism), as well as paying the installments for whatever gifts she bought Jodie, and her being too lazy to shop at the commissary instead of the convenience store (not that she is willing to learn to cook, anyway, and Doritos are made with corn – so they must be part of a balanced diet), while you’re also paying for that cute E-3’s abortion after you accidentally knocked her up (and a new car for her, too, or she’ll accuse you of rape), and you’re on half-pay for the next few months because you thought it was a good idea to take a swing at your Squad Leader after he told you to get your shit together (it’s not like he knows what it’s like to survive on a junior enlisted paycheck!), and you still have to pay off that 56” LCD flatscreen so you could play Call of Duty because life as a soldier is so stressful and your leadership just doesn’t understand so you need to unwind after your six-hour duty day…….
    Yeah, it’s hard to pay for food.

    I’m sure it’s all Trumps fault, somehow.

    • SFC D says:

      I think that guy was in my company.

    • Roh-Dog says:

      Are you reading my diary?!?
      And my SL deserved it, I threw the red stress card and Reeeeeeeee-ed for 10 seconds.

      • Hate_me says:

        Some of that might come from first-hand experience… I’ll leave to your imagination which parts.

        All of it I’ve observed, second-hand, at least once in my career. A joe DID take a swing at me as SL once, because he didn’t like my assessment of his life choices. However, there was no Article-15 and he didn’t lose any pay…

        As I’m sure many here can recall, we used to handle discipline problems a bit more effectively.

        • Roh-Dog says:

          Problems are almost always best handled at the lowest level.
          Make Wall-To-Wall Counseling Great Again!

        • Hack Stone says:

          1st Sgt would take the Marine who needed an attitude adjustment behind the paint locker for some intense one on one counseling. One of them would be coming back with a black eye, and it wasn’t the 1st Sgt.

          • rgr769 says:

            There is no substitute for a prompt ass whipping when the problem child needs an attitude adjustment.

    • A Proud Infidel®™ says:

      Or when you’re suddenly broke because you got a No Pay Due because you didn’t make the last few DPP payments from your PX purchases!

      • Green Thumb says:

        Or you got overpaid 20k on your bonus (although you did not know this because you and decided, hell, the Army finally figured you were worth the money) and you blow it on whatthefuckingever comes to mind.

        Then, and only then, do you get the NPD.

        And then the shit hits the fan because the Army will take back the engagement ring, the car, the stereo but not the computer (because it is custom made).

        So you fuck your buddies my bringing the wife in all burping the baby and shit with tears in her eyes and the PSG lines them to make a donation to the “new cause”, well, because its the right thing to do.

        So to really show your boys how tight you are, you come in the next day in a nice leisure suit with a new pair of kicks and show them your wife’s new tattoo.


        • David says:

          Overpaid 20k on a bonus? I suspect many here remember when a critical MOS reenlistment didn’t PAY 20k, even for 6 years.

          • Green Thumb says:

            During war, Infantry becomes a critical MOS.

            When the bonus money runs out, incorporate stop-loss. still have to pay, but in a very different arithmetic.

    • Anonymous says:

      Hey, those’re my guys!

  17. Top W Kone says:

    Only in the US can we have 1 in 5 going hungry at the same time have 1 in 3 being obese.

  18. 11B-Mailclerk says:

    “How can I be out of money? I still have checks in my book!”

    Actual quote, from someone who was in some serious financial distress less than two months with our unit.

    In OSUT, they made folks take pay as travelers checks and/or money orders. Apparently this inDUHvidual thought “checkbook” was a variable “travelers check”.

    He lived rather large, then found out that ” large” described the crack he was in.

  19. bill says:

    Still think we oughta go back to paygrade E-4, over 4 before ya get paid fer dependents. Also live in barracks on base–appropriate exceptions.

  20. Claw says:

    Speaking of money for food, this question applies to those who were drawing BAS from the Army after 1991:

    Was the policy of more than 14 days away still triggering a BAS recoupment?

    What I mean is, starting in the mid 1980’s (and up until I retired in 1991) if you went on, say a 18/20 day FTX/CPX, or a 35 day Pinon Canyon/NTC rotation or a 45 day REFORGER,
    after you returned to home station, paperwork was sent to Finance by the S-1 slugs and the daily BAS (Separate Rations) for however many days that the government fed you while you were gone, was deducted from your next paycheck.

    I know that it was a cost saving measure used in the lean times, but still, having the monies deducted from your pay later on kinda sucked./s

  21. Anonymous says:

    1/5 of kids suffer from “hunger” while 2/5 are overweight. That’s a dumbness problem.

    • Hondo says:

      Either that, or a GaS problem (GaS: Give-a-Sh!t).

      And not on the part of the kids, either.

    • Green Thumb says:

      Sometimes weight (obesity) can be a sign of hunger, poverty and / or serious mismanagement of food sources.

      Or conversely, someones physical location in a food desert without access to reliable and healthy food sources.

  22. DocV says:

    I had the honor of being a Family Advocacy Officer and my wife volunteered with Navy-Marine Corps Relief and the Compass Program, as well as being a Key Wife. The stories, excuses, ignorance, and downright hostility we were met with when trying to assist some Sailors and their families was stunning.

  23. OWB says:

    Well, yes, I can honestly say that there were times in my military career that I felt like the food supply was questionable at best and wondered if I would ever have reliable access to food. This only happened when we were either out in the field for extended periods of time due to, you know, stuff like war or something, or during exercises preparing for same. MRE’s may technically be full of nutrional stuff, but they can also make one not want to eat anything after a while when they are the only thing available. In my own experience, about a week of them is all I could handle because of the high salt content. The options are supposed to better now.

    Then there were the times when we were legitimately busy and simply didn’t know when any of us would be able to take time to eat. Following 9-11, for instance, my little work group tried to eat a hearty breakfast and hope we could finally get another meal before midnight. It took a few days to sort out how to provide ourselves with eats.

    • timactual says:

      ” that there were times in my military career that I felt like the food supply was questionable at best ”

      Kinda describes the Bn. mess hall where I dined in Germany.

  24. MCPO USN says:

    To solve this problem they should take the fast food joints off base. It is amazing how all the “broke” Sailors eat at Pizza Hut and McDonalds five days a week. I would tell them, the galley is the best deal going, especially breakfast. Load up on semi-nutritious food for a low price.

    The car lots on NOB also show you the problem. All Sailors have a nice ride, far better than when I was an E-nothing. Most have nicer cars than the CO.

    The base financial counselor has great stories on how bad our Sailors are with money/budgeting. I always start the Sailor counseling session with “I was thinking you were not too bright, now I’m sure”.

    • Mason says:

      Agree. Breakfast is a pretty easy (and super cheap) way to load up. Lunch, the chow hall is good for salads or a simple burger. Do something nice for dinner.

      At least that’s what we used to do on TDY with our per diem.