Our new Indie Games subforum is now open for business in G&T. Go and check it out, you might land a code for a free game. If you're developing an indie game and want to post about it, follow these directions. If you don't, he'll break your legs! Hahaha! Seriously though.
Our rules have been updated and given their own forum. Go and look at them! They are nice, and there may be new ones that you didn't know about! Hooray for rules! Hooray for The System! Hooray for Conforming!

Military Customs and Courtesies

ninjaininjai Registered User regular
edited March 2011 in Debate and/or Discourse
I have an ongoing debate with a fellow servicemember about some various altercations I had with random NCO's that I've encountered over the past few months, involving military customs, particularly in the area of uniform wear. You can find the uniform wear regulation AR 670-1 here. The debate stems from multiple customs that neither of us understand their limitation as being "unprofessional", such as:

1. Walking and smoking
2. Walking with hands in pockets
3. Walking with obects in mouth
4. Walking/running (pt) with headphones, or use of a wireless device (cellular phones)

Let me first being by posting the definition of the word professional.
Dictionary.com
–adjective
1. following an occupation as a means of livelihood or for gain: a professional builder.
2. of, pertaining to, or connected with a profession: professional studies.
3. appropriate to a profession: professional objectivity.
4. engaged in one of the learned professions: A lawyer is a professional person.
5. following as a business an occupation ordinarily engaged in as a pastime: a professional golfer.
6. making a business or constant practice of something not properly to be regarded as a business: “A salesman,” he said, “is a professional optimist.”
7. undertaken or engaged in as a means of livelihood or for gain: professional baseball.
8. of or for a professional person or his or her place of business or work: a professional apartment; professional equipment.
9. done by a professional; expert: professional car repairs.
–noun
10. a person who belongs to one of the professions, especially one of the learned professions.
11. a person who earns a living in a sport or other occupation frequently engaged in by amateurs: a golf professional.
12. an expert player, as of golf or tennis, serving as a teacher, consultant, performer, or contestant; pro.
13. a person who is expert at his or her work: You can tell by her comments that this editor is a real professional.

If we take the first definition listed, it defines professional as someone who is payed to perform a task. The example given is a professional builder. A professional builder would portray qualities similar to that of a builder by wearing things such as a hard hat, overalls, gloves, tools, etc. Smoking while working would not be something far from his appearance as a builder, giving a professional appearance.
Spoiler:

If we take the most appropriate definition of the word (pertaining to the military) #13, a subject matter expert (or SME as we call them). SME's can take on any appearance. Your expertise is not determined by your appearance, but by what actions you perform. I don't know about you but when I think about the actions the military perforns I don't think this
Spoiler:

INSTEAD I think of this when I think military, because I am a member.
Spoiler:

To elaborate even further, some professions, such as businessmen, crawling through the mud and killing people would be considered "unprofessional behaviour"... That is what a professional soldier does.

And SME's can take any shape as well, people who are EXPERTS don't necessarily mean suit and tie, as shown below:
Spoiler:

So the question is, what is "unprofessional" about putting your hand in the pocket? It looks to me that "maintaining a professional appearance" could be any damn thing.


DISCLAIMER:

I am not disputing whether it is authorized or unauthorized (see AR 670-1) , I'm debating the logic of calling it professional. Stop making excuses for the fuckin rule, and MAKE THE FUCKIN RULE! Write it the fuck down, don't just say "its unprofessional." As I've established, professionalism is up for debate depending on the profession.

Professional appearance, is not a thing. It is an abstract, a loose set of guidlines defined by your PROFESSION.

Now, debate and discourse.

Edit:

I don't know about any of you, but this looks pretty mother fucking professional.
SuperStock_1647R-54506.jpg
stock-photo-businessman-walking-while-talking-on-cell-phone-65855788.jpg

ninjai on
Mice scratching at the walls inside of your head.
This is a warning that my sig was too tall.
You could have sent me a PM or something.
«1

Posts

  • Regina FongRegina Fong Allons-y, Alonso Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Stupid rules put in place so higher ranked individuals nearly always have a reason to yell at their juniors for something.

    Also, enlisted military work is about as far from the accepted definition of "professional" as you can get.

    Janitorial work is never "professional".

  • ninjaininjai Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Stupid rules put in place so higher ranked individuals nearly always have a reason to yell at their juniors for something.

    Also, enlisted military work is about as far from the accepted definition of "professional" as you can get.

    Janitorial work is never "professional".

    Ha ha. I would agree with that 100%.

    That is precisely what I'm getting at. "Professional" is the wrong word to use. Instead of using a general guideline that is so easily interpreted many ways, WRITE DOWN THE RULE YOU WANT PEOPLE TO FOLLOW.

    Mice scratching at the walls inside of your head.
    This is a warning that my sig was too tall.
    You could have sent me a PM or something.
  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Your link to 670-1 is broken.

    Also, as a fellow soldier I tend to think of both sides of the military...garrison and field. I've done more than enough parades and Class A functions to know that, like it or not, that's a side of a professional military as well.

    The only real problem, to me, is the area where they intersect. The worst for me was always those semi-garrison posts in theater (Kuwait, Doha, etc) where suddenly even though you just got off a plane from a place where people shot at you, they care if you have an LED light clipped to your collar. Which absolutely everybody fucking wore in theater, at least on our FOBs (this was back in the DCU days). Worst part being that the smarmy fucks gigging you for it are pulling combat pay.

    The other is the wear of the combat uniform (ACU at present) during garrison activities. I'd never walk around with my hands in my pockets in Class A's, it just wouldn't feel right. But if I'm walking to the motor pool? Walking and smoking just doesn't feel like a "big deal" when you're wearing a uniform that's specifically designed to get fucked up. Meh.

    I've heard the headphones with PTs sold as a safety issue, though no I never bought it. And professional? It's a physical fitness training uniform. I'm going to be sweating, grunting, etc. while I wear the damn thing. Professional is largely out the window.

  • ninjaininjai Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Spoiler:

    LOOKS PRETTY FUCKIN PROFESSIONAL!!!


    @ MCD Fixed

    And about walking with hands in pockets, I know what you mean. I walk with my hands in my pocket at work, or in line for chow, whats the big deal. Especially in theater, getting bitched at for dirty boots when you're walking through sand and mud all day FUCKING SERIOUSLY!? HEY! I HAVE AN IDEA, FIELD DAY AT THE END OF A 3 DAY CONVOY!!!


    As for the headphones in PT, I understand the safety thing, but I'm indoors on a treadmill, I'm not going to get hit by a car in there...

    Edit to OP:

    To elaborate even further, some professions, such as businessmen, crawling through the mud and killing people would be considered "unprofessional behaviour"... That is what a professional soldier does.

    Mice scratching at the walls inside of your head.
    This is a warning that my sig was too tall.
    You could have sent me a PM or something.
  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    ninjai wrote: »
    Stupid rules put in place so higher ranked individuals nearly always have a reason to yell at their juniors for something.

    Also, enlisted military work is about as far from the accepted definition of "professional" as you can get.

    Janitorial work is never "professional".

    Ha ha. I would agree with that 100%.

    That is precisely what I'm getting at. "Professional" is the wrong word to use. Instead of using a general guideline that is so easily interpreted many ways, WRITE DOWN THE RULE YOU WANT PEOPLE TO FOLLOW.

    In fairness, in nearly every command I've been in the rules are pretty clearly laid out by your superiors. They may not be "written down," which is to say in the regs, but individual commanders are always allowed to add their own (more restrictive) rules anyway.

    Really, the only time I've been "blindsided" by silly rules regarding "professionalism" (like the ones you list) are during transitional areas like Kuwait. If I got rolled up for standing around with my hands in pockets in garrison, it's not like I didn't know that was the standard in my unit.
    Also, enlisted military work is about as far from the accepted definition of "professional" as you can get.

    Janitorial work is never "professional".

    So fucking true.

    Still, I think the idea is that when you aren't actively mopping up shit or turning a wrench, there's a certain standard of professionalism they want soldiers (and servicemembers) to exhibit. And it's no coincidence that these rules are cracked down on twice as hard any time there are civilians around.

  • TaranisTaranis Must be the feeling, it brings to you That makes you do what you doRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    In Iraq there were fucking MPs that rode around on gators and spent the majority of their day yelling at soldiers for walking and smoking. Any argument against me walking and smoking is irrelevant when I have minutes to get to/from the chow hall before it closes (fuck eating MREs or going hungry in theater). Most rules that don't have a tactical/ethical/safety justification can be ignored in theater as far as I'm concerned, however following the rules in (regardless of how arbitrary they seem) garrison shouldn't an issue.

    Somewhat related, but mostly I just love this fucking song

    nerosig_zps80ae1f48.png
    steam / mwo: calverin
  • SynthesisSynthesis Honda Today! Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    This might just be the usual bitching of a conscript, but I think customs and courtesies are the least of the ROCA's problems, way behind using enlisted men to dig irrigation ditches and do laundry.

    Orca wrote: »
    Synthesis wrote:
    Isn't "Your sarcasm makes me wet," the highest compliment an Abh can pay a human?

    Only if said Abh is a member of the nobility.
  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
  • ninjaininjai Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    mcdermott wrote: »
    In fairness, in nearly every command I've been in the rules are pretty clearly laid out by your superiors. They may not be "written down," which is to say in the regs, but individual commanders are always allowed to add their own (more restrictive) rules anyway.

    Really, the only time I've been "blindsided" by silly rules regarding "professionalism" (like the ones you list) are during transitional areas like Kuwait. If I got rolled up for standing around with my hands in pockets in garrison, it's not like I didn't know that was the standard in my unit.

    Well, I'm in an awkward position, my bn/co SOP is 1 page long because we're broken up really fuckin wierd compared to the rest of the Army

    I can't say I've been blindsided, but the other day I was walking to the latrine 10 meters away from the smoke pit with a $15 cigar , and instead of puting it out (just lit) I walked to the latrine. I got bitched at on the way back and made to put it out 5 meters from the smoke pit. Fuckin sersiously?

    And I was walking the other day with a toothpick in my mouth. Got bitched at for that. Or the headphones on the treadmill, I was even in civilian PT attire, but the guy knew me, and said it was unprofessionl. I told him to fuck off I'm not in uniform and therefor not directed by 670-1 on this, and he said in theater it doesn't matter what you're wearing its unprofessional, take it off or get NJP...

    What.

    The.
    Fuck.


    Lol Fobbit song.

    Mice scratching at the walls inside of your head.
    This is a warning that my sig was too tall.
    You could have sent me a PM or something.
  • TaranisTaranis Must be the feeling, it brings to you That makes you do what you doRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    I've neither seen, nor heard of someone getting getting chewed out for using headphones in the gym in theater. I did it all the time and I wasn't alone.

    Civilian PTs in theater? I've never heard of this being allowed. You're really not supposed to change out of uniform in theater. Where are you?

    nerosig_zps80ae1f48.png
    steam / mwo: calverin
  • jothkijothki Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    I hear that running in uniform while carrying scissors is unprofessional.

  • SynthesisSynthesis Honda Today! Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Only if not properly using the issued scissor holster.

    Orca wrote: »
    Synthesis wrote:
    Isn't "Your sarcasm makes me wet," the highest compliment an Abh can pay a human?

    Only if said Abh is a member of the nobility.
  • N1tSt4lkerN1tSt4lker Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    "Disciplined" is probably more like the right word for those types of appearance-related rules. Walking around with your hands in your pockets doesn't look disciplined. It doesn't, as has been noted, really relate to looking professional. The problem is that most people don't think of "disciplined" as having that meaning, so "professional" is used instead since uniform/dress codes in the civilian world more often use that word. "Professional" does tend to get misused in this way in both realms.

    Synthesis, now I want a scissors holster just to say I have one. Great.

  • The CatThe Cat Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited March 2011
    Gotta point out that those suit-wearing dudes are posing hand in pocket rather than mooching around the office like that. They're demonstrating the construction of the suit to a customer, and trying to look cool while doing so. That said, a lot of military dress rules seem odd to me. Isn't there some rule about the number of tattoos you can have before you enlist that no longer counts once you're in?

    tmsig.jpg
  • override367override367 Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    N1tSt4lker wrote: »
    "Disciplined" is probably more like the right word for those types of appearance-related rules. Walking around with your hands in your pockets doesn't look disciplined. It doesn't, as has been noted, really relate to looking professional. The problem is that most people don't think of "disciplined" as having that meaning, so "professional" is used instead since uniform/dress codes in the civilian world more often use that word. "Professional" does tend to get misused in this way in both realms.

    Synthesis, now I want a scissors holster just to say I have one. Great.

    Brb, pitching "Tactical Scissors Holster" to the pentagon.

    I'm only asking for a 220 million dollar R&D budget too, they'll go for it for sure

    XBLIVE: Biggestoverride
    League of Legends: override367
  • SerpentSerpent Sometimes Vancouver, BC, sometimes Brisbane, QLDRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    The two pictures of guys in suits on phones do not look professional.

    Walking down the street is not an appropriate place for any type of business call. Not only that, they will not be able to put their full attention to the call. If they are engaged in a business call they will be significantly less effective than if they were acting professionally by taking the call in a more appropriate setting.

    Sometimes you need to take a call while walking down the street for business. Most of the time, you don't.

  • Regina FongRegina Fong Allons-y, Alonso Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    The Navy briefly changed it's rules to allow cell phone use while walking, with the caveat that you were still required to drop your phone hand to your side and salute any time you needed to salute someone.

    It lasted a few months. Chiefs bitched. Officers bitched. They just couldn't stand it.

    Then right back to no one is allowed to walk and talk.

    Except all the important people who never followed that rule anyway.

    Because what good are rules for professional conduct if you're going to wildly apply them to high-ranking, important people within your organization?

    That's just crazy.

    It only makes sense to have these rules for your janitors. No one expects upper management to appear professional.

  • ninjaininjai Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Taranis wrote: »
    Where are you?

    OPSEC lol.

    But its very allowed here.

    @ Nonet stfourlker I'm pretty sure that is the correct interpretation of the regulations. The things that I listed definitely seem undisciplined, rather than unprofessional.

    @ Regina Fong, you can't expect people who have no leadership above them to be regulated. Noone is telling them what to do therefore noone will correct them.

    Mice scratching at the walls inside of your head.
    This is a warning that my sig was too tall.
    You could have sent me a PM or something.
  • Regina FongRegina Fong Allons-y, Alonso Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    ninjai wrote: »
    @ Regina Fong, you can't expect people who have no leadership above them to be regulated. Noone is telling them what to do therefore noone will correct them.


    You're right, I expect them to set the standard and self-regulate.

    Which they didn't do.

  • ronyaronya Arrrrrrf. the ivory tower's basementRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Synthesis wrote: »
    This might just be the usual bitching of a conscript, but I think customs and courtesies are the least of the ROCA's problems, way behind using enlisted men to dig irrigation ditches and do laundry.

    ... I wasn't aware it was unusual for enlisted men to dig ditches and do laundry. Unless that is "doing laundry for officers" and "digging irrigation ditches for farmers", at which point: o_O

  • Void SlayerVoid Slayer Very Suspicious Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Ditch digging as training goes back to roman times, it has many uses from physical conditioning to discipline and the building of fortifications.

    My two cents for this is that the point of the regulations appears to have soldiers looking professional while on duty. That means paying attention to and working hard at any task. This specifically applies to the outward reflection of that fact. Wearing headphones, talking on a cell phone, smoking, hands in the pocket relays a sense of being sloppy and inattentive to the world around you.

    The in-theater stuff sounds like they expect you to be effectively on duty at all times.

    Also, there are professional ways to clean toilets and do janitorial work, doing the work correctly and in an efficient and safe manner means your doing it professionally.

    He's a superhumanly strong soccer-playing romance novelist possessed of the uncanny powers of an insect. She's a beautiful African-American doctor with her own daytime radio talk show. They fight crime!
  • ronyaronya Arrrrrrf. the ivory tower's basementRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Ditch-digging is pretty standard fare. So is doing your own laundry. Less disciplined armies sometimes have enlisted men or conscripts quietly used as free labour for an officer's relative, though. Which may be Synthesis' point. I'm asking. :P

  • deowolfdeowolf Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Hands in pockets?

    You mean Air Force Gloves?

    [SIGPIC]acocoSig.jpg[/SIGPIC]
  • Just_Bri_ThanksJust_Bri_Thanks Seething with rage from a handbasket.Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited March 2011
    N1tSt4lker wrote: »
    Synthesis, now I want a scissors holster just to say I have one. Great.

    I... I have one.

    On topic though, hands in pockets is in 670-1, and not too hard to find. I don't bother looknig for things in mouth, but I am sure it is listed somewhere...

    Some days I just want to smack people with a rolled up newspaper. Or a phone book.
    A folding chair is looking like an attractive option right now too...
  • DarkCrawlerDarkCrawler Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Synthesis wrote: »
    This might just be the usual bitching of a conscript, but I think customs and courtesies are the least of the ROCA's problems, way behind using enlisted men to dig irrigation ditches and do laundry.

    Hey, conscript buddy!

    Same here for Finland...so much useless bullshit.

  • SynthesisSynthesis Honda Today! Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    ronya wrote: »
    Synthesis wrote: »
    This might just be the usual bitching of a conscript, but I think customs and courtesies are the least of the ROCA's problems, way behind using enlisted men to dig irrigation ditches and do laundry.

    ... I wasn't aware it was unusual for enlisted men to dig ditches and do laundry. Unless that is "doing laundry for officers" and "digging irrigation ditches for farmers", at which point: o_O

    Then to elaborate. Not my own laundry. Officers' laundry.

    A really easy way to tell: if you are in the ROCA, where all enlisted men are literally men, and you are washing women's clothing on a regular basis, then, hey, you're doing someone else's laundry! Surprise! I'm not joking when I say that I spent three or four times what it took me to learn how to shoot learning how to get really good at dry-cleaning and folding. Ironically enough, I never did my own laundry. To my knowledge.

    Also, "irrigation ditches". They're usually not big enough to stand in, and they end up being filled with water when they're done. I wasn't a farmer, I was a infantryman. We also filled in potholes. Which I guess might be self-serving if I was in the armoured forces, but I wasn't personally.

    Just clearing that up.
    Synthesis wrote: »
    This might just be the usual bitching of a conscript, but I think customs and courtesies are the least of the ROCA's problems, way behind using enlisted men to dig irrigation ditches and do laundry.

    Hey, conscript buddy!

    Same here for Finland...so much useless bullshit.

    Hey, mobilized man fistbump! To be fair, Finland's service period is longer than the one I went through.

    How is it in Finland? In Taiwan, er, sorry, the Republic of China, its pretty awful, since patriotism is pretty close to nonexistent for males over the age of 18 and younger than their mid-20s, which is what 98% of conscripts come from, and the racial animosity it breeds between Taiwanese conscripts and Chinese officers. Even outside pro-blue Taichung, there's enough pro-green political sentiment that there were cases of violence between men and officers specifically because of racial or political differences. It would have happened more often, I imagine, if all young men, myself included, weren't such soft-spoken anime/video game/Majong nerds before, during, and after our service periods.

    EDIT: To be fair, though, it could be a lot worse. I could have been conscripted into an army that might actually fight someone. Whereas in the unlikely event of a Chinese invasion, the whole battalion was expected to put our Type 57s down and calmly walk over to the PLA lines and do their laundry.

    Orca wrote: »
    Synthesis wrote:
    Isn't "Your sarcasm makes me wet," the highest compliment an Abh can pay a human?

    Only if said Abh is a member of the nobility.
  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited March 2011

    .......and bookmarked.

    The sock thing is fucking hilarious. Back to the Army, anybody remember the old PTs? The sweatpants/sweatjacket? The jacket that had a hood? The hood you were never, ever allowed to use?

  • TaranisTaranis Must be the feeling, it brings to you That makes you do what you doRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    ninjai wrote: »
    Taranis wrote: »
    Where are you?

    OPSEC lol.

    But its very allowed here.

    Hilarious, but specifying which country you're in and whether or not you're in a major FOB doesn't break opsec.

    nerosig_zps80ae1f48.png
    steam / mwo: calverin
  • DarkCrawlerDarkCrawler Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Synthesis wrote: »

    Hey, mobilized man fistbump! To be fair, Finland's service period is longer than the one I went through.

    How is it in Finland? In Taiwan, er, sorry, the Republic of China, its pretty awful, since patriotism is pretty close to nonexistent for males over the age of 18 and younger than their mid-20s, which is what 98% of conscripts come from, and the racial animosity it breeds between Taiwanese conscripts and Chinese officers. Even outside pro-blue Taichung, there's enough pro-green political sentiment that there were cases of violence between men and officers specifically because of racial or political differences. It would have happened more often, I imagine, if all young men, myself included, weren't such soft-spoken anime/video game/Majong nerds before, during, and after our service periods.

    EDIT: To be fair, though, it could be a lot worse. I could have been conscripted into an army that might actually fight someone. Whereas in the unlikely event of a Chinese invasion, the whole battalion was expected to put our Type 57s down and calmly walk over to the PLA lines and do their laundry.

    Well, same here. No patriotism. The idea of a Russian invasion is a non-existent joke, and even if it happened we would be wiped off the map in ten seconds because todays' Finnish soldiers aren't fit to lick the boots of the men of Winter War and Continuation. Who else are we preparing for, Norway? Everyone basically just thinks it's completely useless to be there and would rather be somewhere else. Noncoms just spend their time abusing their position in every possible way and the rare time we see an officer they just basically say "Good job everyone" and go back drinking coffee and watching TV.

    I mean, I got fit and learned to kill people I guess, but it really served no purpose in the end.

  • ronyaronya Arrrrrrf. the ivory tower's basementRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Synthesis wrote: »
    ronya wrote: »
    Synthesis wrote: »
    This might just be the usual bitching of a conscript, but I think customs and courtesies are the least of the ROCA's problems, way behind using enlisted men to dig irrigation ditches and do laundry.

    ... I wasn't aware it was unusual for enlisted men to dig ditches and do laundry. Unless that is "doing laundry for officers" and "digging irrigation ditches for farmers", at which point: o_O

    Then to elaborate. Not my own laundry. Officers' laundry.

    A really easy way to tell: if you are in the ROCA, where all enlisted men are literally men, and you are washing women's clothing on a regular basis, then, hey, you're doing someone else's laundry! Surprise! I'm not joking when I say that I spent three or four times what it took me to learn how to shoot learning how to get really good at dry-cleaning and folding. Ironically enough, I never did my own laundry. To my knowledge.

    Also, "irrigation ditches". They're usually not big enough to stand in, and they end up being filled with water when they're done. I wasn't a farmer, I was a infantryman. We also filled in potholes. Which I guess might be self-serving if I was in the armoured forces, but I wasn't personally.

    Just clearing that up.

    For the countries that still practice conscription, it wouldn't be a new practice to give conscripts thought to be of unreliable loyalty all sorts of menial positions, reserving specialist training for other groups...

    I suspect bureaucratic corruption is probably more responsible in Taiwan, though.

  • Just_Bri_ThanksJust_Bri_Thanks Seething with rage from a handbasket.Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited March 2011
    Taranis wrote: »
    ninjai wrote: »
    Taranis wrote: »
    Where are you?

    OPSEC lol.

    But its very allowed here.

    Hilarious, but specifying which country you're in and whether or not you're in a major FOB doesn't break opsec.

    Except that it does.

    Some days I just want to smack people with a rolled up newspaper. Or a phone book.
    A folding chair is looking like an attractive option right now too...
  • SynthesisSynthesis Honda Today! Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Synthesis wrote: »

    Hey, mobilized man fistbump! To be fair, Finland's service period is longer than the one I went through.

    How is it in Finland? In Taiwan, er, sorry, the Republic of China, its pretty awful, since patriotism is pretty close to nonexistent for males over the age of 18 and younger than their mid-20s, which is what 98% of conscripts come from, and the racial animosity it breeds between Taiwanese conscripts and Chinese officers. Even outside pro-blue Taichung, there's enough pro-green political sentiment that there were cases of violence between men and officers specifically because of racial or political differences. It would have happened more often, I imagine, if all young men, myself included, weren't such soft-spoken anime/video game/Majong nerds before, during, and after our service periods.

    EDIT: To be fair, though, it could be a lot worse. I could have been conscripted into an army that might actually fight someone. Whereas in the unlikely event of a Chinese invasion, the whole battalion was expected to put our Type 57s down and calmly walk over to the PLA lines and do their laundry.

    Well, same here. No patriotism. The idea of a Russian invasion is a non-existent joke, and even if it happened we would be wiped off the map in ten seconds because todays' Finnish soldiers aren't fit to lick the boots of the men of Winter War and Continuation. Who else are we preparing for, Norway? Everyone basically just thinks it's completely useless to be there and would rather be somewhere else. Noncoms just spend their time abusing their position in every possible way and the rare time we see an officer they just basically say "Good job everyone" and go back drinking coffee and watching TV.

    I mean, I got fit and learned to kill people I guess, but it really served no purpose in the end.

    Yeah, plus, even if Norway (or Russia) invaded, and Finnish spirit repulsed the invaders, you'd end up loosing at the Peace table because Finnish politicians couldn't negotiate their way out of a paper bag with gardening shears and a GPS. Heyo!

    (Little Winter War humor for ya.)
    ronya wrote: »
    For the countries that still practice conscription, it wouldn't be a new practice to give conscripts thought to be of unreliable loyalty all sorts of menial positions, reserving specialist training for other groups...

    I suspect bureaucratic corruption is probably more responsible in Taiwan, though.

    Maybe, except pretty much the entire army and navy are in the same boat, at least that's what travels down the grape vine. Everyone does menial work, and all the Taiwanese and aboriginals (which make up 90% of conscripts) seem to think their Chinese officers (who make up most of the officer corps) are patriotic morons, as oppose to both patroits and morons. I know there are specialist units, though I've never seen any. Even the ROC marines I saw seememed to hasve the same grievances, more or less.

    It's a chicken/egg issue. Are we pissed off because we dig irrigation ditches, or are we digging irrigation ditches because we're pissed off? Couldn't they have just all drafted us into the civil service? I wouldn't have minded that, at least I could have skipped all that useless "This is how you shoot your hilariously oversized rifle."

    In any case, we'd be in no position to fight the all-volunteer amphibious assault troops the Chinese would send across the strait if they wanted to invade. Hell, most of us like those Chinese more than our Chinese officers. The PLA are the cool dudes we see in weird JAG-style military dramas on CCTV4 (or whatever), whereas our officers are all bitches and bastards.

    Orca wrote: »
    Synthesis wrote:
    Isn't "Your sarcasm makes me wet," the highest compliment an Abh can pay a human?

    Only if said Abh is a member of the nobility.
  • Kaboodles_The_AssassinKaboodles_The_Assassin Kill the meat. Save the metal.Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    One of my NCOs prohibits us from putting anything in our ACU cargo pocket. Not even my patrol cap.

    sXXjb1B.png
  • DarkCrawlerDarkCrawler Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Synthesis wrote: »

    Maybe, except pretty much the entire army and navy are in the same boat. Everyone does menial work, and all the Taiwanese and aboriginals (which make up 90% of conscripts) think their Chinese officers (who make up most of the officer corps) are patriotic morons. I know there are specialist units, though I've never seen any.

    It's a chicken/egg issue. Are we pissed off because we dig irrigation ditches, or are we digging irrigation ditches because we're pissed off? Couldn't they have just all drafted us into the civil service? I wouldn't have minded that, at least I could have skipped all that useless "This is how you shoot your hilariously oversized rifle."

    In any case, we'd be in no position to fight the all-volunteer amphibious assault troops the Chinese would send across the strait if they wanted to invade. Hell, most of us like those Chinese more than our Chinese officers. The PLA are the cool dudes we see in weird JAG-style military dramas on CCTV4 (or whatever), whereas our officers are all bitches and bastards.

    Does the distinction between Taiwanese/Chinese mean that the latter think themselves Chinese and the former think that Taiwan is a separate independent country, or did I miss something?

  • SynthesisSynthesis Honda Today! Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Synthesis wrote: »

    Maybe, except pretty much the entire army and navy are in the same boat. Everyone does menial work, and all the Taiwanese and aboriginals (which make up 90% of conscripts) think their Chinese officers (who make up most of the officer corps) are patriotic morons. I know there are specialist units, though I've never seen any.

    It's a chicken/egg issue. Are we pissed off because we dig irrigation ditches, or are we digging irrigation ditches because we're pissed off? Couldn't they have just all drafted us into the civil service? I wouldn't have minded that, at least I could have skipped all that useless "This is how you shoot your hilariously oversized rifle."

    In any case, we'd be in no position to fight the all-volunteer amphibious assault troops the Chinese would send across the strait if they wanted to invade. Hell, most of us like those Chinese more than our Chinese officers. The PLA are the cool dudes we see in weird JAG-style military dramas on CCTV4 (or whatever), whereas our officers are all bitches and bastards.

    Does the distinction between Taiwanese/Chinese mean that the latter think themselves Chinese and the former think that Taiwan is a separate independent country, or did I miss something?

    No, it's not even a political thing necessarily. It's much more of a racial issue.
    Spoiler:

    A lot of Taiwanese, like myself, don't necessarily endorse the Republic of Taiwan taking the place of the Republic of China, but we do recognize an ethnic distinction. And mainlanders have always had a disproportionate representation in academy graduates/officer corps. It results in an underyling racial problem that isn't as bad as it used to be, but can still be really bad.

    Orca wrote: »
    Synthesis wrote:
    Isn't "Your sarcasm makes me wet," the highest compliment an Abh can pay a human?

    Only if said Abh is a member of the nobility.
  • DarkCrawlerDarkCrawler Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    That is interesting, I never realized there was a distinction like that in Taiwan. Makes sense when you actually think about it. Kai-Shek and those who followed him weren't Taiwanese, after all.

  • ronyaronya Arrrrrrf. the ivory tower's basementRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Wikipedia gives 84% "homelanders" and 15% "outsiders".

    The outsider elite has had plenty of time and power to reshape national consciousness and identity, although it doesn't seem to have done so successfully. Lousy propaganda department during authoritarian rule, perhaps. It took two decades-ish for the ROC government to give up on reconquering the mainland, so they presumably didn't even try very hard for that period.

  • SynthesisSynthesis Honda Today! Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    The White Terror was a really great way to choke out any resistance, but it was a public relations nightmare. Also, a portion of that "outsider" group are recent immigrants and migrants from Vietnam and elsewhere, who are definitely not part of the elite.

    Anyway, back on topic, military customs and courtesies bother me, personally, less than obviously non-military-related duties like digging irrigation ditches and doing laundry, when corporations exist that are supposed to do those things anyway.

    Orca wrote: »
    Synthesis wrote:
    Isn't "Your sarcasm makes me wet," the highest compliment an Abh can pay a human?

    Only if said Abh is a member of the nobility.
«1
Sign In or Register to comment.