The Indian Economy Blog

October 27, 2007

Shunning the Military McJobs

Filed under: Basic Questions,Human Capital — Pragmatic @ 12:41 pm

…how the Indian elite is not paying the burden and cost of its status

There are linkages between the larger society and its military subsystem. The military is always in a dilemma – how much to converge so as to absorb the social and political values and pathologies of the civil society and how far to diverge to resist the civilian beliefs and noesis from corrupting the military way. This interplay and a lack of coherent societal or military code on either horn of the dilemma has its own ramifications. The minacious signs are apparent in the Indian society nowadays.

The ‘betters’ – intellectually superior, culturally refined and economically prosperous – in the current Indian society are shunning the military; it is infra dig for them to join the noble profession of yore. It points to a disjuncture between the society and the military, reflected by a near-total absence of the elite in uniform.

The ‘betters’ have a revealing justification, articulated by a Harvard student to avoid the draft during the Vietnam war, for the disparate levels of sacrifice required of the lower social strata. The contention is that the intellectual potential of the ‘betters’ is so high that if anyone must die in a war, then let those die whose potential is manifestly as low as their status. It might be uncommon to hear such argument nowadays for it violates the sanctimony of political correctness, but many among the India’s privileged elite certainly identify with the mortifying thought.

The ‘betters’ indeed end up as doctors, scientists, engineers, lawyers, bureaucrats, professors, corporate honchos and politicians who operate the system. Incidentally, the European aristocrats (most notably the German and British), for centuries, paid the military price for their privileged status [Germans even maintained a record of their nobility in the military till as late as the Second World War]. The Indian elite, both under colonial rule and during its immediate hangover, was manifestly following the European trend. In contrast, the contemporary way for the Indian elite, drawn heavily from the American model, is to avert the incumbrance and cost of its privileged status.

The modern day Indian society has created a context in which the ‘betters’ want the rewards of being intellectually/ culturally/ financially superior without any of the constraints of their superordinate status. An exalted status is not only about the benefits that you claim. It’s also about what you renounce. One of the roles of an evolved society is to make clear to the ‘betters’ not only the privileges they get but also the responsibilities that they have; it should then create the necessary governance systems – nonlegal but socially and culturally sanctified – to ensure that those responsibilities are fulfilled by the ‘betters’ for the larger benefit of the society.

Societies, after all, are hierarchical and motivated by their upper orders as exemplars. While social privilege seems unavoidable in any society, exemplars are equally needed and no more so than in the military. The nation and the society must never forget what Roman General Flavius Vegetius Renatus counseled over 1,600 years ago, “If you want peace, prepare for war”. And centuries before that, Sun Tzu and Kautilya offered essentially the same advice in our part of the world.

A caveat – the ‘better’ is not an exemplar in the military by default; the attitude of deference and respect shown by the soldier to his social and military superior has to be merited by the unambiguous willingness of his ‘better’ to assume the burden and cost of status.

Obviously, as the officer quality declines due to this balking by ‘betters’ (and is fallaciously substituted by a greater number of poor quality officers), its detrimental effect on the military is soon visible. In principle, the idea of denying the military a fair share of ‘betters’ among its officer cadre is inherently dangerous because the transmission belt of social values from higher and creative groups to lower and less creative and less value-sustaining strata is broken. The ‘betters’ can not only make a difference to the organisation by their intellectual acumen, but also by drawing attention to military’s problems and soliciting prompt solutions from their fellow ‘betters’ in the corridors of power.

The ‘betters’ In India are not interested for a more practical reason – what the Indian military offers today to its officers are military ‘McJobs’. Incidentally, the idea of ‘McJobs’- low paying positions with little chance of advancement – bothered the CEO of McDonald’s so much that, when Merriam Webster included the term in its dictionary in 2003, he wrote a public letter of protest.The Indian military nowadays is much like McDonald’s; it may not be offering the most lucrative jobs in town, but chances are its pay, perks and status are more than the barbeque joint (aka the small-time private employer) down the road. In an ‘up or out’ pyramidical organisation like the Indian military where more than half the officers are ‘out of the race’ by the age of 40, it is understandable for the ‘outward movers’ to use the military ‘McJobs’ background as a stepping stone. In effect, the military is creating low entry level jobs from where the people can move on to better places leveraging their military experience and association with the ‘Military’ brand. This may entice the upward mobility seekers from the lower strata, but it dissuades the ‘betters’. The ‘betters’ are, understandably, targeting better avenues for their debuts. Can there be an enforced solution to this pons asinorum in a liberalised, free-market economy?

Time to finish the ‘McJobs’ story. The McDonald CEO’s plea went unheeded. ‘McJobs’ stayed. Merriam-Webster said that it strove to record and define the words that people use, not pass judgment on them.

21 Comments »

  1. [...] Cross posted at the Indian Economy Blog [...]

    Pingback by Pragmatic Euphony » Blog Archive » Shunning the military McJobs — October 27, 2007 @ 12:43 pm

  2. Speaking only for myself, and having served my counry in the Navy for six weeks short of 33 years, I read your aricle with interest because the USA parallel is so different.
    First, while competitive to the point of an occasional brawl, the USA is not a warlike society (in the sense of using a military organization to seek hegemony- we leave that to our industrial giants and the occasional president of the nation).
    Second, the USA has no “warrior tradition” identifiable to leading families. Now, to every assertion there may be exceptions, as in the Lees of Virginia, the Roosevelts of New York, and the McCains of the world oceans – but it never was my experience in the US Navy that lineage had anything to do with leadership in uniform.
    Third, as a nation of immigrants, the USA tradition has been to ‘grow’ its leaders instead of have an ever-supplied cadre of “family names.” (Again, the Kennecys, Roosevelts, and Bushes are variations on a general rule.) The Kennedys are well-known for their “all gave some/some gave all” service to the US; the Roosevelts loved the strenuous life, even in combat, and the Bushes served in uniform — some with more distinction and elan than others. Nonetheless, those scion-names are of the very small few that, in terms of your essay, might be considered “betters.” The “fruit not falling far from the tree.” militarily speaking, is not the standard here.
    Fourth, a concept of “betters” in the national context of USA military life always has been eschewed (if not abhorred) and, what there was of it essentially disappeared after the Vietnam War, when service in arms became a voluntary professional construct, vice the vocation of a few and the obligation of the many.
    Finally, the US Founding Fathers were brilliantly prescient when they subordinated the national armed forces under a civilian ministry, vice a general staff. The men who crafted and almost lost our Revolution had seen European models of military systems and sought a different example. It was not until after our Civil War, in the 1860′s, that the US armed forces moved towards the modernty we know today. In the post-bellum development,the concept of an upper stratum populating the Army and Navy did not exist: after General Lee surrendered his forces (and left the traditional repute of his antecedents)Americans went to West Point to become Army engineers and then headed out to suppress the Red Indians. That sad saga is worth its own essay but perhaps another day.
    I believe it is good that the US military model verged away from the British one. Today, with a fully volunteer career Service, we are being tested in concept, in the Middle East. It remains to be seen if the “ionic bonding”of a professional Armed Force is sufficienly strong to withstand a long term engagement with irregular foes – or whether the need for conscription – and something of a return to service-avoidance by those who can pay for it – will resurrect a US analog of the Indian experience.
    In any case, McDonalds will have a burger-bar not distant from the forward line of troops.
    Your obd’t servant,

    Steve Myers, CAPT USN (Ret)

    Comment by Steven Myers — October 27, 2007 @ 7:43 pm

  3. The primary necessity of military is to maintain the sovereignty of nation states. When the foundations of nation state is withering away the military will also change.

    The concepts that lead to the formation of nation states – religion, language, collective ownership of land, power to issue fiat currency – are slowly withering away. Religious fervor is fading away. Advent of global communication is leading the way for convergence of languages. Land ownership has changed from collective to private ownership. Fiat currency system will soon be replaced by energy based global currency system. Then the whole socio-political-economic scenario will change. People will be able to travel anywhere, live, work, buy property and settle down.

    When nation states wither away military will morph into a global policing system……

    Comment by General P — October 27, 2007 @ 8:12 pm

  4. Pragmatic,
    Given the limited resources of the nation, aren’t the “betters” actually doing service to the nation by increasing the economy (and consumption) output and investing in new business rather than serve in the military?

    Indian Military does offer low pay, but also offers a standard of living far beyond what most middle class India can expect. This, as you pointed out is not a good reason for the “betters” to join, since they can afford his lifestyle on their own dime.

    I think a comparison of european aristocratic model to present day india is not appropriate. All the “upper class” european families were indirectly subsidized by their serfs and peasants with their hardwork. That situation does not exist today. In today’s India, the “betters” are not defined to be “better” by the number of peasants/serfs working under them. The privilege of being “better” has more to do with personal industry rather than family/caste/hereditary affiliation.

    Comment by non-better — October 27, 2007 @ 11:18 pm

  5. @non-better: Fair point. My point is that the military should get a fair share of betters, at all times. The term \’better\’, in a contemporary context, has to refer to guys doing well on their own – by their industriousness, intelligence and their cultural, social and financial background. I am not referring to the elite solely in a feudal or royal sense – blue blooded. Although, in a different sense, they also form part of the \’betters\’.

    @General P:

    Utopia – A book written by Sir Thomas More (1516) describing the perfect society on an imaginary island. Sadly, we ought to abandon all hopes of utopia as there are people involved! Tch…

    @Steve Myers:

    Many thanks for visiting and leaving a comment on the blog. I say this because it is rare to see a US veteran comment on a military piece, written in an Indian context.

    …the USA is not a warlike society…

    And the same is true of India, a land of Buddha & Gandhi. Fortunately, we don\’t even have that occasional warmongering Prime Minister.

    the USA has no “warrior tradition” identifiable to leading families

    The British left us with the concept of \’Martial races\’ and the feudal & royal families, so called inheritors of a warrior tradition. If we call that a warrior tradition, I am not so sure.

    Thanks for the other comments. I must clarify here that my definition of \’betters\’ was more than mere lineage – it was about the intellectually, culturally and financially endowed who are completely eschewing the military in India today. The military needs a fair share of these guys and without any coercion/ official diktat. I understand that you shouldn\’t force it in a democratic society but the society\’s self governing mechanism should be able to correct the anomaly. The bottom line is that a society can\’t leave an important institution like the military bereft of top talent.

    A progressive, democratic society with a burgeoning economy like India must ponder and seek answers to this vexed philosophical challenge.

    It remains to be seen if the “ionic bonding”of a professional Armed Force is sufficienly strong to withstand a long term engagement with irregular foes – or whether the need for conscription – and something of a return to service-avoidance by those who can pay for it…

    I sincerely hope that the Iraq experience doesn\’t push the US military to the Vietnam model of conscription and drafts. Luckily, we in India have never had to undergo all that, not even in the colonial times. And, hopefully never will…

    Comment by Pragmatic — October 28, 2007 @ 8:56 am

  6. A very thought-provoking post and equally insightful comments I must say.

    Countries earlier went to war over issues of market access or assets. Today, no democratic nation can ever be seen as going to war over these issues with mechanisms like the WTO, various other arms of the UN there to moderate and resolve disputes. However new sources of armed aggression from irregular forces (terrorists) for one, are keeping the military relevant. Both in the US and in India, the military is basically engaged in combating this threat. Now, I do believe that many would characterize the Iraq war differently as being about oil/ energy assets. However, it is important to note that it is politically incorrect to be going to war for this or any similar reason. Aside of that the way international relations is structured, the provocations for armed response seem to be getting fewer. General P’s observation about the blurring of national/ ethnic identities is also relevant here.

    The short point is that in a situation where the traditional role of the military- to counter external aggression is changing, do we need to also find a way to recruit thinkers, planners and visionaries into the armed forces (again I hasten to add that there have been and are some good examples of these in the armies)? The reason I am saying this is that the armies of the future may be less about brawn alone, and visualizing these challenges, preparing for them before they are upon us needs some things to change.

    Comment by little Ram — October 28, 2007 @ 5:37 pm

  7. @Pragmatic

    If you are referring to selfish human nature, it is the very same selfish human nature that will make the nation states to wither….

    Large scale private micro ownership of land came into effect only in last 200 years, before that land was owned by kings…. who gave the control of land to nobles and down the hierarchy, this is what motivated them fight along side the kings. Even then the kings had to lead the fight from the front otherwise soldiers will not follow.

    Today the “only” factor that holds together the nation state is the power to issue fiat currency and substantial benefit that military-industrial complex derives from it. The Iraq war has already exposed the unsustainability of fiat currency system and the necessary change towards redeemable energy based currency system. Without fiat currency the military-industrial complex will wither away. Without military-industrial complex nation states will wither away paving way for true globalization.

    Globalization means global redeemable energy based currency system…… and not artificial currency arbitration opportunities that our IT/Export companies seems to relish. Already Indian farmers are stepping down food production, it is normal human nature, people will not sustain unprofitable activities, Indian farmers are as much selfish as IT geeks and economists. After 2 decades of self sufficiency in food grains India is again importing wheat the last 2 years. There goes the myth of “wealth creation” through currency arbitration!

    This is not Utopian fantasy but imminent reality…. think……

    Comment by General P — October 28, 2007 @ 9:55 pm

  8. “He who has borne the bondsman’s heel will long for its removal by force before the one who shines boots for a living – but sooner than the boot-maker.”

    I recently have had occasion to work with IT specialists from Bangalore and Mumbai as I struggled to resolve a few niggling software issues with Microsoft “Vista.” To a person, each specialist was expert not only in his/her field but also in interpersonal relations. I learned a lesson from those human contacts: there must be room for all of us at table.

    If, as alluded in this most interesting exchange of ideas, the way the table is made “Great” is to remove artificial seating segments, then it will happen in good time and, as another has remarked, ideas of nations and states will change to accommodate the table and its placement arrangements.

    That is, a unless heretofore kind of vast, malignant criminality displaces common sense with “go for broke” violence. Under such extraordinary conditions, even the levelest of democratic heads may feel that similar violence is the only viable response that may stop it – so that the Great Table may be preserved.

    I am farthest from being an expert on India, the Southwest Asia area, or the hemisphere. However, it is clear to me that there are profound “tectonic” socio-economic activities in the region. When the Cold War ended, two superpowers suddenly found they had no reason to continue manning a modern Maginot Line along the Oder River in the west and the Kamchatka littoral in the Pacific. That depressurization, uncertain as it was at the time, soon resulted in tectonic shifting elsewhere (recall the lifting of the boot?) which continues today.

    One draws post-war borders on napkins at one’s peril, for rivers change their courses, mountains erode – and people never are idle when it comes to exploiting Nature. Today’s nature invites us to a table which is very different from yesterday’s napkin-artistry.

    If some have grown over-comfortable in their lifestyle and “Given” opportunities in life, those will be faced with the reality of competition from unaccustomed quarters: the result with be the worry of change. However, to allow for table seating, flexibility is in order.

    A reasonable person looks forward to the new teams entering the soccer pitch – for the “league” is expanding whether the established tradiional teams like it or not.

    And, unless we colonize Mars sooner than I believe we will, many championship series must still be played here on terra firma.

    The boot, the table, and competition will not go away. How we stewards apply them will hallmark our presence here – as the rivers shift and the mountains erode a little more.

    It will be pleasant if we experience it as family.

    Steve M

    Comment by Steven Myers — October 29, 2007 @ 1:59 am

  9. @little Ram
    “However new sources of armed aggression from irregular forces (terrorists) for one, are keeping the military relevant.”

    The mindless bombings happening in Indian cities has more to do with FUD tactics of Insurance Industry than Insurgency…..

    Comment by General P — October 29, 2007 @ 6:12 am

  10. @little Ram:
    Thanks. But I disagree slightly – the thinkers, planners and visionaries (aka the right mixture of brains and the brawn) have been always needed in any good military. If the times are changing so dramatically, this lack of superior brains can have devastating effects.

    @General P:
    Still thinking:-)I am certain that this isn\’t happening in our lifetimes. BTW, do you work in the insurance industry;)

    @Steve:
    I agree. Two points. Whether it on a Napkin or by nature, these are controlled changes. How a nation relates to (embraces or reacts to) these changes is the key?

    Secondly, even the family has a head. Will the fight now be for that seat of eminence on the table?

    Comment by Pragmatic — October 30, 2007 @ 8:21 am

  11. For Pragmatic – Thank you. In answer to your observation (viz, napkins), I suppose a visionary might “luck” into drawing borders that endured a while because of external controls from a more powerful entity, but the tectonics of human existence and development, it seems to me, are very complicated and affected across a spectrum of opportunities.

    What a great observation! Families have heads, for sure. One needs only refer to any of the great books of faith to discover that this is a uniformity in human thinking. Authority must come from somewhere, since the godhead is not tangible; this is where strong men come in – for better or for worse.

    The authority paradigm, in my opinion, has potential for being an awesome weakness in the family’s advance for good. For example: when the aging father knows he must die and decides to parcel his estate among his sons (notice: daughters are seldom so advantaged in many societal constructs), why do so many real or fiction accounts see the disbursement becoming a war? Is it because we, as animals, too, are inherently aggressive -or because the godhead does not want us to know all his/her secrets? War certainly tends to be a good distractor from philosophy!

    How should we have it, then? I believe a Great Table is the way, but it is not to the liking of some(back to the concept of ‘betters,’ which was what drew me to this marvelous discussion in the first place): it is a pity that merely a place at that Table of Civilization is not enough to satisfy an instinctual drive to achievement, renown, whatever. Work is a positive reflection of achievement, war is the negative aspect. Yin-yang; Janus; dialectic, whatever it is called, it runs though us.

    When there are only kings, no work will get done because there are no serfs. When only serfs exist, there will be no work done because no one will know to oversee it. Is work, then, the culprit?

    When we talk instead of fight, we will have become Family. As the poet observed:

    “And all will know the work was right,
    They day will prosper then,
    With handshakes ‘cross’t the heather –
    And one needs but whisper: when?”

    Steve

    Comment by Steven Myers — October 30, 2007 @ 4:54 pm

  12. @Steve:
    The poem appositely summed it up.When?
    On a similar note, Clausewitz might have some answers about the society, state and the military. Allow me to quote from a post on my blog[Pragmatic Euphony] -

    As per Clausewitz, the three tendencies from which war is composed are:

    1. the blind natural force of primordial violence, hatred and enmity
    2. the play of chance and probability, within which the creative spirit is free to roam
    3. the element of subordination, as an instrument of policy, which makes it subject to pure reason.

    The modern historians (in a typical Hollywoodisation of complex theories) reduce Clausewitz’s dynamic trinity to his quite secondary reference to government (or state), army and people. Instead of Clausewitz’s rich and contradictory trinity of hatred and violence, chance, and politik, war is simply reduced to its agents. As the British historian Michael Howard pointed out, Clausewitzian dialectics embraced the relations between means and ends; moral factors and physical forces; historical knowledge and critical judgments made in the field; absolute, or ideal, war and real war; attack and defence, and tactics and strategy.

    Comment by Pragmatic — October 30, 2007 @ 7:50 pm

  13. Dear pragmatic ,

    1 I went through your article comparing us with Mac Donald, but was bit busy to reply you.

    2 Whatever may be the reason of you excluding us from better half of society, I would like to at least tell you that this profession serves the people not by giving burgers but by providing a socially useful and necessary function: defending the country.

    3 Now this requirement of increase pay packet is his meeting of a society need but it does not make any difference to the righteous officer own moral dimension of the Army’s professionalism as well as the noble character of the individual officer’s service to his fellow citizens.

    4 All I would say that once we join we are firstly treated equal with no distinction between your so called ‘betters of society and less’. The entry scheme is from a varied schools and colleges. Also when we commission all of us live by what is embodied explicitly on Chetwood Hall and a pledge in the commission there is implicitly with own self of a moral obligation & moral commitment always to put service before self. All of us then pass out as Indian Army Officers with no distinction of class of society

    5 Therefore, if involved in the type of any crisis for the country , unlike your so called ‘betters of society’, there will never be in the Indian army officer’s mind the need to preserve self. To the officer of this fine army , self is always to be abnegated to the higher calling through the disciplined application of moral or physical courage.

    6 Given this attitude and behavior, coupled with the concept of selfless service noted above, fear of the truth also holds no power whatsoever over the officer. It is, in fact, his or her very best companion during the long journey of service.

    7 Thus, application of these principles yields attitudes and behavior often at odds with those within the society of your so called ‘betters’ the officer has chosen to serve. Does this then mean that the officer is in any manner less than those in high society even when he does not believe in that unethical spoiled living ? We do not believe so. It means only that the Indian army officer is different, and has unreservedly chosen to be so.

    8 We live by self-righteousness & do not become MacDonald employees serving for daily wages under capitalism . We are serving and fighting against the enemy of this country and we have disdain for stunts by which your high society is trying to empower the country . Unlike your rich employees, the officers of Indian Army are operating in camaraderie under the imperatives of their commission, to tend in a principled manner to each other, to their profession and to its ethos.

    A message for your ‘better half of society’ who are not joining services

    ‘Honour sinks where commerce long prevails’

    Bye regards
    brando

    Comment by BRANDO — November 3, 2007 @ 4:26 pm

  14. @Brando:
    ‘McJobs’- low paying positions with little chance of advancement
    Need I say more! It has nothing to do with McDonalds employees and why should a honest worker there be disparaged vis-a-vis an uniformed soldier. Please read the post carefully again. I haven’t said anything remotely connected to whatever you have rambled about in your comment.

    Comment by Pragmatic — November 3, 2007 @ 6:44 pm

  15. Dear pragmatic,

    I went through your article again. You could have avoided lot of unnecessary comparsion which has no basis with military and talked specific issues. I think People like you want to harm us “for what we believe in

    Comment by BRANDO — November 3, 2007 @ 9:45 pm

  16. @Brando:
    Thanks for reading the post again. I’d have appreciated it much more if you had done that before putting up that earlier harangue.
    People like you want to harm us “for what we believe in
    I’m flattered but no, I have no such evil designs. You are entitled to your views about the usefulness or uselessness of my post, as are many others, who have reacted/ commentated favourably on the post.

    Comment by Pragmatic — November 3, 2007 @ 10:23 pm

  17. Military is the world’s oldest profession
    =========================================

    The article raises an extremely basic question – is it universally “noble” to be in the armed forces ? When did killing human beings become a “noble” task ? Yes, when you see the military as a licensed killing machine, you suddenly realize the pathetic nadir that we as a civilization seem perennially stuck in. All the sugar coating of patriotism, duty towards the country, offering the ultimate sacrifice for protecting the borders is all crap – CRAP. The military is a means to kill – kill fellow humans on the other side of the border. Or much further – like in Vietnam, or in Iraq or in Kosovo.

    Come to think of it, people in the military are treated by the civil society with a lot of respect – even though the military are paid to kill (and can do hardly anything else). The military should probably be called the oldest profession in the world. And it deserves all the stigma that is unfortunately associated with this phrase currently.

    One would have expected the armed forces (especially the ones that go with sugar coats like “peace keeping forces”, and if they were truly “noble”) to define a roadmap for self-obsolescence. Rarely has this ever happened. Armed conflict is self-perpetuating machine.

    The “betters” in the society should recognize this nadir of human endeavor and therefore stay away from it. More importantly, they should educate the less betters to realize the simple fact that military is all about killing people, and pave the way as in some (western european) countries, to making the military gradually obsolescent.

    Comment by vinay — November 11, 2007 @ 7:02 pm

  18. Who are these “betters”? I have never come upon any. What exists is a class of pseudo-intellectuals, new rich and some fantasists, almost all idiots to the core and many busy sucking up to westerners and western ideals. Its good that these people are not in the army.

    Oh and there is no need for “exemplar” situations from the “betters”. There is no glory in war and less glory-seeking by the “betters” is better for the “worsers”.

    Btw, India is the only country where the military is truly under civilian control. You can add UK to that to some extent. In every other country, military does control upto the highest level and are subordinate only to elected officials (if they exist.) In India, the military is subordinate to another layer of bureaucracy which adds a much needed civilian perspective to the management of military affairs and conflicts. Also, India is one of the few countries where a military uniform cannot help in launching a political career. It makes sure that military staff does not indulge in hijinks with an eye on future careers. In most other countries, people have a serious hard on for military uniforms. I have never understood why.

    Comment by HmmBut — November 16, 2007 @ 10:53 am

  19. Its 4 a.m in Singapore so I havent had the energy to read the other posts, but the first thought that struck me after reading the article was..if the army is staffed with people with no economic opportunity or standing outside of the uniform…is it difficult to understand why the urge to usurp civilian power is so hard to resist?

    Comment by Anthony — November 24, 2007 @ 1:39 am

  20. mr pragmatic …after reading through all of these posts …i have a few observations that might help to enlighten the ignorant “betters” like you…..you would understand what indian defence forces are all about the day u stop looking at it as a mere bread earning job …..there’s a passion behind them which lesser mortals like you would never understand….yes the defence forces today might be lesser paid than many jobs in civil street but your comment that the “betters” are not joining the forces is farce …it is totally non factual, actually the forces cannot be compared to any other job…if a guy after giving 10-15yrs of his youth wishes to quit and go towards better paid avenues in the civil street, i think is totally justified. i’m yet to find an unsuccessful ex-service officer.that just goes to prove that there is no dearth of intellect in the forces its just that you arent putting them on the same platform to compete.if all you ever wanted to do in your life was to just earn money….you’re a winner……but if you wanted something more something different from life which would give some meaning to your life, something that your parents or kids would look up to u for then u lost it the day u put that post…this is for some1 who wrote that forces shouldnt be called noble —the profession is noble because of sacrifices that an officer makes for others and not because of killing ppl….risking his life ,risking his family’s future.

    Comment by maverick — December 15, 2007 @ 1:44 am

  21. Hi i am science graduate who is thinking to join the armed forces. Can someone please bring out the comparisons on family life in the army vis-a-vis the corporate world for me.
    Thanks.

    Comment by SUKOON — January 9, 2008 @ 7:42 pm

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