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What If?

JohnDB

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Certain countries like Switzerland and Israel require two years of compulsory military service of all it's citizens. (Switzerland is only men)

Now of course it's deferrable up to a point for some qualified reasons like school or pregnancy.

What if America adopted a similar policy except it would include all forms of public service...like road building, vehicle maintenance, public works, various paperwork, and material handling...and of course military service. (Screening by an improved ASVAB testing would help with determining placement)

It also would greatly reduce expenses of our government services (minimal pay including room and board instead of competitive wages and good employees offered supervisor positions)

It would change things...
What kind of manner would it change things?
Would it be beneficial or a waste of efforts? How would you feel about a term of service.
 

Michael74

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Professional volunteer military forces tend to be more effective than 1 or 2 year conscript armies. When Ukraine was invaded, they sent a lot of conscripts at first. They soon realized their mistake, and now are developing a more professional force. It takes time to master military skills, especially considering the high tech weapons of today.

The US experience of using conscripts in Nam was disastrous. The troops could not be properly trained before sending them into combat, and many conscripts simply did not have the temperament for combat. Elements of the army adopted the procedure of sending inadequately trained conscripts behind enemy lines via helicopter, forcing them to fight their way back to their bases. It was inefficient attrition warfare with no real strategy and tactics. The American voters rebelled when they found out what was happening to their children.

Professional armies are more expensive, but they are also far more effective. Now that the US rich have rebelled at funding a professional military, the US may eventually go back to ineffective conscript armies.

Israel is an exception to the general rule, because the Israeli public supports military service. They know Israel is surrounded by enemies that will exterminate them if given a chance. The holocaust in Europe has never been forgotten. Israeli soldiers are magnificently trained for 2 years and 8 months, or 3 years during their mandatory service. Many volunteer for a long run full time military career, or reserve status where they are trained on a regular basis well beyond their original 3 year mandatory training. It bears no resemblance to how US conscripts were trained for Nam. Many US conscripts got a few weeks of basic, and were sent into the field. They mustered out before they became adept at combat.

Adequately training even a conscript army is seriously expensive. You can't get an effective military inexpensively, or quickly. Years of training on advanced weapon systems is needed today, if you want to win.
 
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JohnDB

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Professional volunteer military forces tend to be more effective than 1 or 2 year conscript armies. When Ukraine was invaded, they sent a lot of conscripts at first. They soon realized their mistake, and now are developing a more professional force. It takes time to master military skills, especially considering the high tech weapons of today.

The US experience of using conscripts in Nam was disastrous. The troops could not be properly trained before sending them into combat, and many conscripts simply did not have the temperament for combat. Elements of the army adopted the procedure of sending inadequately trained conscripts behind enemy lines via helicopter, forcing them to fight their way back to their bases. It was inefficient attrition warfare with no real strategy and tactics. The American voters rebelled when they found out what was happening to their children.

Professional armies are more expensive, but they are also far more effective. Now that the US rich have rebelled at funding a professional military, the US may eventually go back to ineffective conscript armies.

Israel is an exception to the general rule, because the Israeli public supports military service. They know Israel is surrounded by enemies that will exterminate them if given a chance. The holocaust in Europe has never been forgotten. Israeli soldiers are magnificently trained for 2 years and 8 months, or 3 years during their mandatory service. Many volunteer for a long run full time military career, or reserve status where they are trained on a regular basis well beyond their original 3 year mandatory training. It bears no resemblance to how US conscripts were trained for Nam. Many US conscripts got a few weeks of basic, and were sent into the field. They mustered out before they became adept at combat.

Adequately training even a conscript army is seriously expensive. You can't get an effective military inexpensively, or quickly. Years of training on advanced weapon systems is needed today, if you want to win.
I understand what you are saying.
I was thinking that instead of just military service there are many more things that the public service could be involved with.
Sure someone could choose military service instead of paper shuffling, food service, forestry service, or whatever else needs to be done...but that's the point. Everyone serves in some fashion at something that they chose...so it would be less "conscripted attitudes"...and the term of service could be used as a means of experience in some field that you actually can use towards a career later.
Everyone wants to learn how to fly a jet, but not everyone can do the mental acrobatics to actually be able to. Many people want to be able to work with nuclear reactors or aircraft flight control or information technology...but don't have the temperament. Many will get stuck delivering mail, planting trees in a forest, driving a dumptruck to build an interstate, or constructing barracks to house conscripted people. Mundane jobs that have to be done by people.

That's why I was suggesting that it be across all areas of public service and not just military service. Sure, some people will be military... and some will want to stay in public service. Why not?

Kids could go after high school or college...their choice. (They will have arrived at their majority by that point)

And instead of hiring all of the contractors our Government currently does we could have it be a term of public service.

PX is actually the largest grocery store chain in the world. And you need a military ID to buy stuff there. Albertsons is second...(this conglomerate includes Publix and Kroger named stores). This is nuts.

TVA is another creature developed by our Government...it needs all kinds of technicians and engineers...and electricians...all great career paths. Compulsory public service could help with that.

Sure there will be those who barely get by...and criminals...and those with disabilities who get excused if they wish to.
I'm just wondering about it from several angles. Social, economic, and cultural.
 

Nathan12

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What if America adopted a similar policy except it would include all forms of public service...
That sounds like a good idea, but given the kind of people who are now in Congress and the Senate, you would see nothing but opposition to anything that is worthwhile or beneficial to America. The majority of politicians today are committed to destroying the USA.
 

JohnDB

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That sounds like a good idea, but given the kind of people who are now in Congress and the Senate, you would see nothing but opposition to anything that is worthwhile or beneficial to America. The majority of politicians today are committed to destroying the USA.
I wouldn't agree with that...(the emboldened part)
I would think that they are focused on getting re-elected and lining their own pockets with power and money...it just co-incedentally destroys the country.
 

Michael74

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I was thinking that instead of just military service there are many more things that the public service could be involved with.
2 years of free labor would attenuate cost. 18 to 20 would in general be minimally skilled years though.

Many fields need quite a bit of training before people can be effective in them. It takes years of apprenticeship/internship before people can become journeyman tradesmen, medics, lawyers, soldiers, etc... They would muster out before they could become adept at doing tasks such as maintaining jet fighters. They could do minimal skill jobs such as picking up paper at parks, bringing meals to the elderly, painting the sides of ships, etc...

It would delay the training of doctors, electricians, plumbers, and such by 2 years. They would have 2 fewer years to contribute at their maximum skill levels. The trade off between 2 years of free labor and delayed training for complex future jobs would have to be carefully considered.
 

JohnDB

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2 years of free labor would attenuate cost. 18 to 20 would in general be minimally skilled years though.

Many fields need quite a bit of training before people can be effective in them. It takes years of apprenticeship/internship before people can become journeyman tradesmen, medics, lawyers, soldiers, etc... They would muster out before they could become adept at doing tasks such as maintaining jet fighters. They could do minimal skill jobs such as picking up paper at parks, bringing meals to the elderly, painting the sides of ships, etc...

It would delay the training of doctors, electricians, plumbers, and such by 2 years. They would have 2 fewer years to contribute at their maximum skill levels. The trade off between 2 years of free labor and delayed training for complex future jobs would have to be carefully considered.
Ahhh
But there is the point you missed.
Service could be postponed until after college. So you can get some experience in a skilled trades after education.
Of course some people don't do well with college...and end up with a low level service period.
And of course there will be those who wish for permanent positions with the Government for competitive wages.
 

Mike S

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Two things: First, labor unions would never allow it. Second, it would devolve into a do-nothing program, with people sitting around doing nothing and feeling entitled. America needs a moral revival before anything like this would work.
 

Michael74

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Service could be postponed until after college. So you can get some experience in a skilled trades after education.
Drafting people from 22 to 24, or older in the case of graduate/professional school tends to be problematic. Many people have already started families by then. You would either be taking people away from their children, or starting expensive day care facilities that would potentially negate cost savings from universal service. One of the reasons 18 year olds are generally drafted by nations.

When a man hath taken a new wife, he shall not go out to war, neither shall he be charged with any business: but he shall be free at home one year, and shall cheer up his wife which he hath taken. Deuteronomy 24:5 KJV
 
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I think some of these ideas (modified versions of them) were implemented at various points during the New Deal, especially when the Depression was its worst, pre-WWII, except it was mostly men and the emphasis was on being working age. personally...

I think the New Deal helped -save- capitalism. true story...fascism, communism, socialism...whole lotta -isms floating around in the 20s and 30s. now that the younger set are going more left-wing/somewhat socialist (I'm not trying to get political here, just sharing what appears to be happening in the under 30ish demographic)...

"The Green New deal" or...a (new) new deal seems like a good idea, to stabilize society and keep class warfare from getting out of hand.
 

Michael74

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I think some of these ideas (modified versions of them) were implemented at various points during the New Deal, especially when the Depression was its worst, pre-WWII, except it was mostly men and the emphasis was on being working age. personally...
New Deal programs didn't draft people. They hired people for pay. Just like private companies do. They were volunteers who applied for the jobs.

Wikipedia said:
...the Works Progress Administration (WPA), headed by Harry Hopkins, which focused on smaller projects and hired unemployed unskilled workers.
A few nations today have civilian type jobs for draftees. Switzerland for example allows those drafted for 260 days of military service to substitute 390 days of civilian service instead. Of course, the Swiss never actually go to war, so no one knows how effective their draftees would actually be in a real war.
 
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Mike S

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A few nations today have civilian type jobs for draftees. Switzerland for example allows those drafted for 260 days of military service to substitute 390 days of civilian service instead. Of course, the Swiss never actually go to war, so no one knows how effective their draftees would actually be in a real war.
Well they have cool uniforms and protect the pope but I wouldn’t depend on their fighting ability.
 

JohnDB

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Well they have cool uniforms and protect the pope but I wouldn’t depend on their fighting ability.
Switzerland has a fairly low crime rate.
And a lot of neutrality in affairs on the international scene. But their membership with the EU did get them a huge influx of Moslem immigrants (as well as Greeks) and the crime rate has increased....many are up in arms as to what to do about it.

The French however, have been rumored to have been going back to their 1960's and 1970's solutions to terrorists. And the terrorists are running scared...and Moslem immigrants seem to be finding other places to live...
Russia also seems to be terrorist free after dropping all that ordinance of white phosphorus bombs on whole cities known to have sponsored terrorists.
 

Nathan12

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"The Green New deal" or...a (new) new deal seems like a good idea, to stabilize society and keep class warfare from getting out of hand.
Surely you meant "destabilize society". One of the primary objectives of Marxist philosophy is to destabilize societies, and maintain a constant state of class conflict. The Green New Deal is a Communist's attempt to create havoc in America. You have to wonder who voted for this person and whether massive voter fraud was involved.
 
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ok. a "socialist" in America is center-left for much of the EU. the political discourse has moved -way- to the right, so now talking about bringing back the 50s tax code, for instance, is "radical." crazy man, crazy. :)
 

kiwidan

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With all the talk about obesity among children, it would be extremely beneficial.
But the government should have no right over peoples personal and private lives.

Compulsary anything is crooked. It's the government forcing people to do something against there will. Compulsary military is equally as crooked as compulsory hijab for females in Iran.

Governments should never have that much power over the masses.
 
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Michael74

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But their membership with the EU did get them a huge influx of Moslem immigrants (as well as Greeks) and the crime rate has increased....many are up in arms as to what to do about it.
That is the issue which is causing the EU to separate into independent states again. Britain is leaving the EU mostly due to EU demands for placing violent people in their country. Hungary has sealed its borders in defiance of the EU. Most people just want to go about their business peacefully.

If they become a majority, they vote in Sharia law. People who convert to Christianity are executed. Christians have become almost extinct in Iraq, since their "democracy" was put in place. They did not vote in a Bill of Rights to protect people like the USA did. They absolutely do not believe in freedom of religion.

If the USA wants to maintain freedom of religion, we should only let in immigrants who believe in freedom of religion.
 
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jasonc

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Professional volunteer military forces tend to be more effective than 1 or 2 year conscript armies. When Ukraine was invaded, they sent a lot of conscripts at first. They soon realized their mistake, and now are developing a more professional force. It takes time to master military skills, especially considering the high tech weapons of today.

The US experience of using conscripts in Nam was disastrous. The troops could not be properly trained before sending them into combat, and many conscripts simply did not have the temperament for combat. Elements of the army adopted the procedure of sending inadequately trained conscripts behind enemy lines via helicopter, forcing them to fight their way back to their bases. It was inefficient attrition warfare with no real strategy and tactics. The American voters rebelled when they found out what was happening to their children.

Professional armies are more expensive, but they are also far more effective. Now that the US rich have rebelled at funding a professional military, the US may eventually go back to ineffective conscript armies.

Israel is an exception to the general rule, because the Israeli public supports military service. They know Israel is surrounded by enemies that will exterminate them if given a chance. The holocaust in Europe has never been forgotten. Israeli soldiers are magnificently trained for 2 years and 8 months, or 3 years during their mandatory service. Many volunteer for a long run full time military career, or reserve status where they are trained on a regular basis well beyond their original 3 year mandatory training. It bears no resemblance to how US conscripts were trained for Nam. Many US conscripts got a few weeks of basic, and were sent into the field. They mustered out before they became adept at combat.

Adequately training even a conscript army is seriously expensive. You can't get an effective military inexpensively, or quickly. Years of training on advanced weapon systems is needed today, if you want to win.
Having served your statement on naming and ww2 are ignorant .we won ww2 using conscripts and part time guard guys reservists,the later Units saw action and trained for a year in scenarios.

With nam,we didn't want to win.,we train one and fight another,the way I was trained in basic and for war were not even close,and once there I'm theater, only these I needed,use of a radio,brm,movement to contact etc. All else didnt matter.

We trained for decades on what the VC did. I deployed in 04,I joined in 91 ,nam ended in 73. Unless it was some short mission its what we trained for doctrine is doctrine, deployment trainings arent the same, been in for both eras the former was busy work.the later was to stay alive, adjusted in theatre on the fly.

Can always know what theatre tactics are there until you are in it.
 

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