OT us soldiers re-enlisting at a high rate?

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least
in
snippy dave again. snips what he doesnt like or cant understand.
i know what i said. i said the % had dropped. you dont disagree so ill assume you agree with that point. its you that plays the word games. you are trying to claim i am using that to prove re-enlistment went down. i NEVER made such a claim. i only said that it was not proof that re-enlistment was high.

ploink or not, i know youll google it. you never answered my questions. your fundamental premise has been that i claimed the numbers showed the re-enlistment rates were falling. i never claimed that and you couldnt show me where i did. you have judiciously snipped my posts to alter reality. this one included.
no steak for you man...
randy

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I think you are both off on looking at the numbers and USA Today is hardly a source worthy of credibility on the subject. Listen, after 18 years in the military I've heard numbers and percentages every year and it comes down to this: Numbers go up and down on recruitment and re-enlistment ALL THE TIME. The biggest short falls in these areas during my tenure occurred during times of relative peace. But it really occurs in cycles. Sometimes we recruit and re-enlist more than what the speculated need is and some times we fall short. ( I have yet to see us hit it right on the nose). Then 20 years later (the time in for retirement eligibility) you see an exodus reflecting those short falls or excesses. Falling 4% below need or getting 6% more than expected is hardly cause for concern. Judging the military's morale based on these numbers is naive to say the least and silly to be more accurate. During times of shortfalls we offer incentives to stay in and during times of excess we offer incentives to get out, and in between that we do whatever necessary to keep the level of manning where congress wants it (i.e. adjusting for force reductions or expansions). Right now the trend is a reduction in the active duty forces and an increase on the role of the reserve forces. Even with all that is going on right now, all branches are looking at force reduction in most areas.

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I think you are both off on looking at the numbers and USA Today is hardly a source worthy of credibility on the subject. Listen, after 18 years in the military I've heard numbers and percentages every year and it comes down to this: Numbers go up and down on recruitment and re-enlistment ALL THE TIME. The biggest short falls in these areas during my tenure occurred during times of relative peace. But it really occurs in cycles. Sometimes we recruit and re-enlist more than what the speculated need is and some times we fall short. ( I have yet to see us hit it right on the nose). Then 20 years later (the time in for retirement eligibility) you see an exodus reflecting those short falls or excesses. Falling 4% below need or getting 6% more than expected is hardly cause for concern. Judging the military's morale based on these numbers is naive to say the least and silly to be more accurate. During times of shortfalls we offer incentives to stay in and during times of excess we offer incentives to get out, and in between that we do whatever necessary to keep the level of manning where congress wants it (i.e. adjusting for force reductions or expansions). Right now the trend is a reduction in the active duty forces and an increase on the role of the reserve forces. Even with all that is going on right now, all branches are looking at force reduction in most areas.

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wrote:

It's not proof of _anything_at_all_. Can't you understand that?
-- Regards, Doug Miller (alphageek-at-milmac-dot-com)
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wrote:

But without knowing what the goals for the two years are, the change in percentage is utterly meaningless.

He's claiming that absolutely no meaningful inferences can be drawn from that datum, because the information is grossly incomplete.
Example: suppose that last year, the goal was to have 50K soldiers re-enlist, and actual re-enlistment was 53 K; now suppose that this year, the goal is 75K, and actual is 72K. Although actual re-enlistment *rose* by 36%, the "percent of goal" declined from 106% to 96% -- which illustrates the reason that comparing percentages of different values is meaningless, without knowing the actual values.

But you continue to argue as though it must mean *something* when, in the absence of any additionaly information, it is in fact utterly meaningless.
-- Regards, Doug Miller (alphageek-at-milmac-dot-com)
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Of course it is, but he's gonna go off on you now about "That's not what I mean" while repeating it.
I predict it'll be the same circular stuff he gave me, but I'll only see your posts so it might actually be entertaining this time.
Dave Hinz
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wrote:

in
which is what ive said all along.

inaccurate
that
re-enlist,
without
sure you cannot draw a meaningful conclusion. but you can draw a conclusion. the one i began with. sigh. lets go back to the beginning:
"but lets move on. the 96% number is not a pure number. it doesnt mean 96% of the soldiers re-signed their papers, it means only 96% of their goal was met. as compared to 106% the year before. so when compared to their re-enlistment goal, its falling. the article makes no mention of what the actual number of troops the 106% represented nor does it provide any numbers for the rate during other wars/situations so no further comparasson can be made."

doug, the information provided in that article means exactly one thing. as measured by the percent of their goal, the rate is falling. thats what i said, thats what im continuing to say and its true. they list the percent for two different years, one is lower. between those years, it fell. thats all it means. do you disagree?
what i keep arguing about is that you guys are putting words in my mouth. see the problem here is that you are reading dave's snipped posts which give the appearance im saying something i never said.
did i ever say it means the actual number of solidiers re-enlisting is falling? no. in fact i stated the opposite : 'the article makes no mention of what the actual number of troops the 106% represented nor does it provide any numbers for the rate during other wars/situations '
did i ever say that you can draw any conclusions from the fact the % of their goal is falling? no. in fact i specifically stated the opposite. 'no further comparasson can be made' is it that much of a stretch to get you to agree that 'no further comparasson can be made' is basically the same as saying 'the data is meaningless'?
so in short, back up your claims of what i have said with quotes please of intact paragaraphs from posts that i made in this thread. i tried to get dave to about 10 times and he wont. will you?
randy
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wrote:

Wrong -- it doesn't mean a damn thing, because it's comparing apples and oranges. It doesn't state what the goal is this year, or what it was last year, so any comparison of the rates of meeting those goals is completely without meaning at all. It doesn't measure anything, and it doesn't mean anything. Nothing. You can draw _no_ conclusions at all, because the data is incomplete.

Yes, I do disagree -- you think that means something (not clear what, but you obviously think it's meaningful in some respect), and in fact it does not mean anything at all.

Nobody's putting words in your mouth.

Incorrect assumption. I have read everything you've posted in this thread.

Yet you continue to cite this as though it actually meant something. It doesn't.

In fact, the figures provided don't even support _that_ conclusion. Unless you know what the actual goals were, you can't draw _any_ meaningful conclusions from the percent-of-achievement figures.

Never mind "further comparassons [sic]" -- I'm telling you that the _initial_ comparison is meaningless.

I have nothing to "back up", Randy. I never made any claims that you said, or didn't say, any particular thing. The _entire_ substance of my participation in this thread has been to attempt to show to you that the figures you cited, and any comparisons between them, are meaningless, because the data is incomplete.
-- Regards, Doug Miller (alphageek-at-milmac-dot-com)
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as
is
can we agree that this is the crux of the disagreement? that you think that my comparing the %ages of their goal from two different years means absolutely nothing and i think it means that the percentage of their goal is falling? all else seems to come from this from what i can tell...
if not, what is the crux of the issue?
randy
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wrote:

Pretty close, anyway...

If I might put it in a nutshell, the crux of the issue is your failure to comprehend that the comparison is meaningless, because the crucial data required to put it in context is missing.
-- Regards, Doug Miller (alphageek-at-milmac-dot-com)
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wrote:

thing.
and
last
completely
mean
data
that
is
im trying to get this really clear. you are saying my comparison of the two years is meaningless?
the article gives you the percent of their goal for two different years. we agree on this? lets not get into what it means yet, just that we can agree that the article provides those numbers. can we do that?
lets replace the sentence % of their goal with the word apple since you've accused me of comparing apples to oranges. you got it? the phrase "% of their goal" shall be replaced by the word 'apple'. so to rephrase, the article gives you the apple for one year, and gives you the apple for the next year, and you cant say that the apple has gone down or is falling?
because that is the only claim i made. the PERCENT is falling, not actual numbers.
randy
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wrote:

Yes. I think I said that before.

Yes.
Your paraphrase conceals the problem, because it obscures the fact that the goals themselves, and any change in them from one year to the next, are not known. Let's stick with the original phrasing, please.
The incomplete numbers equally well support _both_ of these statements:
a) the percentage of goal achievement is falling b) the goal itself is rising
and hence it is not possible to derive _any_ meaningful conclusion, in the absence of further data.

SO WHAT?? That doesn't mean a damn thing, unless you know what it's a percentage OF. And you don't.
-- Regards, Doug Miller (alphageek-at-milmac-dot-com)
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Doug Miller respons:

Yabbut, the OP made similar claims. Jump him, too. Or, better yet, let all this die, because it is essentially meaningless (because the statistic is meaningless and mildly misleading and was probably intended to be so).
Charlie Self "When a stupid man is doing something he is ashamed of, he always declares that it is his duty." George Bernard Shaw, Caesar and Cleopatra (1901)
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Well, the OP hasn't continued with it for a week as Fred has.
This is solving an equation with two variables. R1 is last year's reenlistment number, R2 is this year's. Unsolvable mathematically, look:
R1    R2 --- ?    --- 106    96
Can't reduce it, can't solve it. Meaningless to compare.
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wrote:

actual
yes i know it doesnt. ive tried for 10 posts to get you to admit that the % is falling. by saying 'so what' you appear to concede this point to me. yes it is TOTALLY accurate to say the % is falling. and yes it is TOTALLY accurate to say you cannot draw any conclusions from that.
do you see?
now dave. what did i ever claim it meant except that it was NOT proof that enlistment was rising? please provide the sentence where i said 'because the % is falling i can conclude xxxxx"
randy
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wrote:

What I *don't* see is why you keep repeating a figure that you now admit is without foundation for drawing any conclusions. If it's meaningless, why do you keep harping on it?
-- Regards, Doug Miller (alphageek-at-milmac-dot-com)
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the %

TOTALLY
is
do
why do you guys keep harping on me for assigning meaning to it when i didnt?
randy
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wrote:

Why do you keep repeating something that you admit [see above] is meaningless?
-- Regards, Doug Miller (alphageek-at-milmac-dot-com)
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actual
this
i did not make similiar claims. todd claimed the article was proof re-enlistment was 'high'. i think ive made it pretty clear i wasnt making ANY claims except the % of their goal was falling and that the article did not provide proof of todd's claim.
randy

that
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randy responds:

And you're arguing continuously over a meaningless stat in a meaningless manner. I hoped there would be some sense interjected here by someone, but, obviously, that hope is forlorn. The thread dies for me right now.
Charlie Self "When a stupid man is doing something he is ashamed of, he always declares that it is his duty." George Bernard Shaw, Caesar and Cleopatra (1901)
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