Another day, another story about the Army's ever-expanding signing bonuses. Enlist right now, and you can get $40,000 toward a home or starting a business! Maybe nobody told them the cool way to get paid these days is in Euros? "In marketing terms, the Army's core product — military service — is a tough sell right now," the recruitment effort's leader Col. Sterling, who is himself retiring from the Army next year, tells the Wall Street Journal, in a story that jokes that the new slogan should be "Buy All That You Can Buy." And boy is that an understatement — the four-star general who led us into the war on the first place is now BFFs with Pelosi! So naturally, there's a lot of discussion of whether appealing to consumerism and greed is the best way to find the right soldiers, because after all isn't that how Blackwater happened, and also, how Real World contestants became so awful. But here's the amazing part: the younger generation is apparently not money-motivated enough to respond, so the Army is trying to convince parents and teachers to make them so.
Anyway, the whole story reminded me of commenter Vivriesavie17's depressing tale of working in the Philadelphia public school system, and how although we've always thought that unless teachers make shitloads more money the Army is going to be a lot of kids' brightest hopes, but money alone is not going to cut it; never has and never will. Seriously, is there an amount of money that would get you to go to Iraq? What about a North Philly public school? Tell us what it is, and we'll, uh, write our senators about it?