"Modest Adjustments"  

Definition:  entitlements programs will take the hit, while sparing loopholes that benefit the very rich.  The word “modest” is used in a benign way so as to mitigate military pensioner expectations.


Definition:  congresses definition for military pensions for the American public.  Use of the word “benefit” helps garner support from the standby crew, the media, to begin the attack process on military retirees.  And attack they do.

"Touch Choices"

Definition:  Quoting Chuck Hagel, SecDef:  "We can no longer put off military compensation reform," Hagel said. "We all know we need to slow the cost of growth. Tough decisions will have to be made on compensation," he said at a Pentagon briefing with Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.  

You might be wondering who the “we” is when he states “we all know….”  The “we” he is referring to are the: White House, the Bean Counters in the Pentagon, and the top level generals. 

Hagel and others are really wanting to turn the military health care and pension programs over to the private sector.  That is the long term goal of congress, the White House and of course Wall Street.

"Working age retirees"

Definition:  Beltway language describing anyone below age 62.  Grist for the right-leaning ideologues: go work for a living and get off the government dole!  

"I don’t agree with everything in the budget, but…."

Definition:  what they (congress) mean is:  ”Blame the “sequester” for holding the gun to our heads for not doing the right thing.”  There is a reason the congress has a single digit approval rating.  They don’t work for you!

"The cut is small…."

Definition:  normally, “a small cut” are welcome words from a surgeon.  Rehab will be quick!  But when Very Serious People use such language it is carefully crafted for the pensioner so as to confuse them about the huge cut they will get in the pocket book.  Masking a really big cut.

"Find savings…."

Definition:  congresses way to cut pensioners pay without saying the word “cut.”  Using the word “cut” would scare service members.

"Grand bargain approach….."

Definition:  Very Serious People code for reducing entitlements and pensions.  Bipartisan — majority in congress and the president agree in cutting entitlements.   Congress has a high opinion of itself.

"The military budget risks being entirely consumed by health care and retirement benefits if no action is taken."

Definition:  alarmist language for the public used by Very Serious People.  ”Pensioners must make up the difference in budget talks, not overly priced DoD procurement programs!”  Congress is trying mightily to imply the reason for large public debts rests solely with the recipients.  

"….some tough choices must be made to avoid this scenario."

Definition:  this sentence epitomizes the decision making by the Very Serious People.  This language is used to condition people into thinking they did something bad and congress stands at the ready to whack it.  

"….if we put everything on the table in a "grand bargain" approach."

Definition:  congresses way to say, “if we put pensions and entitlements (SS and Medicare) on the table and there is an agreement to cut them, it is better for everyone.”  However, in the micro Grand Bargain of 2013, military retirees are the only ones to be on the surgeons table. 

"The need for reform…."

Definition:  preparatory language: cuts are coming our way.

"Social Security and Medicare…." lumped in with "military pension (benefit) reform."

Definition:  alarming language from congress to marshall media support to inform the very rich who want those programs cut:  ”See, we are doing what you wanted us to do.  Now give us (congress) more money for our next election”  In the case of the military, hardware trumps people programs.

"Reforming entitlements"

Definition:  cuts, cuts cuts!  Code language congress uses at the behest of the very rich.  You see, the very rich don’t want to pay more in taxes.  In fact, they want to pay less and want those that are receiving government entitlements to shoulder more of the costs.  Congress is dutifully complying with their wishes.

"Brave" and “Bold”

Definition:  words used by congress to pat themselves on the back (and to feel good about the inflicted pain) for shafting a pensioner or entitlement recipient.  You can count on the media to piggyback on the language.

"Lucrative second careers…."

Definition:  language the Beltway press uses to say military retirees do extraordinarily well in their post military jobs.  It is used to stun the public.

"One percent….."  

Definition:  message control for the troops so as not to alarm them, when in fact the “one percent” will have a deleterious impact on their pension.

"Less drastic approach…."  

Definition:  language used by the media at the behest of congress.  Another way to say a one percent cut is no big deal.  ”Move along people, nothing here to see.”  Or saying we should feel lucky because they could have gone further with the cuts.  

"$1.7 million instead of $1.8 million"  

Definition:  congresses way of throwing big, scary numbers out to the public.  Who is going to challenge congress when such seemingly large numbers are tossed around?  Kinda like the widely advertised million dollar hammer which was used to describe waste in the Pentagon back in the day.

"Everybody had to take a little…."

Definition:  Senator Schumer’s (D-NY) view on the recent budget negotiations.  The way he understands it, civil servants and congress have already taken their lumps.   According to him, it is time for the military pensioner to share in the pain like the rest of “us” because “we (congress) have taken pretty big cuts.”  In reality, only the military retiree took the bigger hit in this budget round.  Readers must keep in mind Sen Schumer works for Wall Street.  Wall Street has created shadow groups (a.k.a lobbyists) that slams the government spending in order to get a piece of the pension and entitlement pie.

"The government is broke!"

Definition:  scare language so congress can protect the interests of the very rich at the expense of the entitlement programs.  This is probably the most insidious language congress uses to deflect attention away from the causes of the financial crises and towards entitlement recipients.  Incredibly, many in congress favor leaving only interest payments and the DoD budget on the federal ledger — cutting out entitlements, pensions and everything else altogether.  They prefer to turn those programs over to Wall Street voucher plans.  With less money coming in entitlement programs would default.  That’s exactly what many in congress banking on.

"A little pension reform"

Definition:  the national media providing cover for the Beltway Very Serious People.  With this protection congress can quietly move ahead and deep six military pensions.