Pitting scum-sucking knuckle-dragging recruiters

“But they’re shooting at ME!!”

yeah… when I got back from iraq I was a bit jumpy whenever I heard a loud noise but it is starting to go away. I think I need to give you more info as to what specifically happened to me. I avoided it because I thought it was unneeded at the time. I had signed up as open general because the MEPS personnel told me that a seperate test would be required for the programming job. He told me that once I passed the test they would switch me to a programming job. I took a simple logic test and thought that in a week they would be calling me to tell me that they would be switching my job. After a week of no response I got on my recruiter to get on the MEPS personnel about it. I come to find out that they lost my test and said I never took it. I should have known it would happen since I was the only person taking the test that day. Anyways, I didn’t have enough time to take another test before I was to be shipped to basic because they only give it once per month at the LA MEPS station. I was really pissed because I had memorized a little bit of the test and I could even tell them what question 8 looked like… or question 10. I was mad but not dumb. I knew there was little chance for me to get that programming job so I told them to switch my job to another computer job. For two weeks I was told by my RECRUITERS SUPERVISOR that it would be changed. I came to find out a few days before I went to basic that he said he lied to me and he couldn’t switch my job. He told me I would be able to get a good job in basic cause of my high score though… LOL… that is why I am currently an AF burger jockey. BTW, I know a few programmers here at Langley. They told me that most of what they do now has nothing to do with programming. Their job is to try and break programs so you might want to relay that to your son.


Mine told me since I had a bachelors degree I’d go straight to Officer Candidate School after Basic Training. Swore on a veritable stack of pancakes, but didn’t put it in writing. Guess what…

I didn’t go to OCS. On the bright side, I did get the MOS I signed up for. Whee!

On a lighter note, when I took the compulsory military physical here in Switzerland, I got a perfect hearing test result. Guess where they put me?


Gee, and I thought Haliburton was providing the meals to the military.

My job is Computer Networking and Crypto Systems. Sounds cool, doesn’t it? Not really.

The “computers” are seven-ton green boxes that are older than I am. The “networking” is all fiber-optic, which is a total bitch to handle. I’d tell you about the crypto, but I’d have to kill you first (just to make sure). To top it off, I was trained on modern computers, routers, and switches. They told me that I would never see any of the shit I’m working with now. In fact, some of the new guys in our shop didn’t even go over these in tech school. Oh, and as you can see, I’m out in the middle of fucking Idaho.

The moral of the story: Even if you got the job you wanted, you could have gotten screwed anyway. Cross-train if you can.

I opened this thread thinking it was going to be about civilian job recruiters. Based on the stories here, it seems that anytime someone has recruiter in their title, you are going to get fucked over. Once I commented about the lies and unrealistic bullshit job descriptions that recruiters love to throw around when a person chimed in, “Recruiters are salespeople so they have to make the job sound good enough for you to take”. Complete and utter horseshit. I am a salesperson and if I lied to people to buy product, I would be in jail. If I don’t give people correct details about what they are buying, I can be sued.

Oh, man, does all this sound familiar…

1981, I was 18 and stupid. I had taken the ASVAB and scored really well on the electronics portion of the test, despite barely being able to change a light bulb. So I’m talking to the recruiter that signed me up, and he’s telling me, “Kid, with the score you got, you should sign an open electronics contract. With your score, you can have your pick of whatever job you want”. Hey, sounded good to me.

Sure enough, a couple of weeks into basic, they take us to this morning briefing on the different jobs that are available in our fields, and they had some stuff that sounded pretty cool to me, stuff like working on radar systems, digital flight simulators, that kind of thing. Then they showed us a listing of duty stations that were available. I grew up in a little town in Illinois, and one of the things I wanted out of my military experience was to see the world, so I listed preferences for bases in Europe.

Next day, I got to sit down one-on-one with a counselor who was going over my paperwork, and he was looking through it as he was talking to me:

“Oh, I see you listed digital flight simulators on your sheet. That’s a tough school, and we don’t get enough candidates with high scores like yours to place there.”

I’m thinking, cool, score!

“And I see here that you listed a preference to go overseas, which is good, because most of the guys want to stay stateside.”

Oh yeah! I’m in! That recruiter really knew his shit!

“It looks here like you have a clean police record, is that correct?”

“Yes, sir, that is correct.”

“Good. We have a severe need for electronics technicians in the Minuteman program, and we can probably get you a security clearance. That’s where we’ll put you. Your orders will be issued a couple of weeks before you finish your training here.”


Well, it could have been worse. My original orders while I was in tech school had me going to Grand Forks, ND for the remainder of my enlistment. At least I caught a break somewhere along the line, and the changed me to Vandenberg AFB, CA. It was almost like a foreign country for a small-town kid like me…

It was funny because in basic training we had filled out our BOP(base of preference) sheets and I put down all california and west coast bases and codes. I got langley afb virginia. Now, I wouldn’t be upset at all about this(I know that we all can’t go where we want) except for the fact that the people I was with in tech school wanted to go to langley but got travis(in northern cali). I would cross-train (which some have suggested) but I am not giving the AF anymore time than they already have from me and for me to cross-train I would have to extend my enlistment. I have one word of warning for those of you that think getting your promises in writing will help. I have met too many people that “had it in writing” but the AF superceded their contract and changed their job for a million different reasons. I would say join up, but be prepared to take it up the ass with no KY. Then again, it could be worse… I could be in the Army :wink:

Disclaimer: I’ve never been in the miltary.

But I’ve had many family members and friends who were, and what I always heard from them is that one enters the military to serve said military; never expect the military to serve you, except by sheer happy coincidence. So I always had the default belief that once signed up, said enlistee was used in whatever way the service thought best.

Was it ever a reasonable expectation that the enlistees wants and desires would be not only listened to, but acted on?

I have no axe to grind here, but I am curious.

Obviously, the mission comes first. If it is in their best interest to have me pick up dog shit all day I would do it without question, but why not cater to people’s needs if it is at all possible? The machine wouldn’t work very well if everyone hated life, no? It is in their best interest to strike a happy medium. Everyone knows that when they go into the service they are giving up lots of freedoms but there is also a certain expectation that the branch you are under will take care of you, not totally disregard you.

The ASVAB has a bunch of subsections, just like the SAT or ACT. It’s possible to score 99th Percentile overall but have poor scores in a few subsections. If these subsections are relevant to your job, the recruiter should give you either a single follow-up (for the specific job you want) or a series of follow-ups (one fo each of the relevant sections you tanked in the ASVAB) to see if you just had a bad day on the ASVAB or if you really do suck in those areas.

SO, though you might have a 99 on the ASVAB, if you got 41 in Coding, that might not drag your overall score down (since many people suck suck suck on that one), but it could significantly impact you percieved suitability for anything computer related.

Anyway. From some recent conversations I’ve been hearing, the Air Force has been having an over-staffing problem. The other services aren’t having this problem (the Navy in particular is hemorrhaging folks due to the deployment extensions during the Gulf W. War). SO, the suggestion above that you start making noise because the services are trying to keep you happy and (re)enlisted may not apply to your particular branch and situation.

It’s only 4 years (Incidentally, would your original job have required an Active Duty Extension due to the length of training involved?) and most employers will look on former military service positively, no matter what you actually did for the military. Since you’re intellectually overqualified for your job, I’d expect you’re doing well on the advancement exams and any other hoops they want you to jump through. So, if you come out of the military after 4 years, as a cook, with a bunch of awards and letters of recognition you will be much better off than if you came out after 4 (or 6) years, as a computer specialist, with nothing to show for it but a few war stories.

Boy, am I glad my parents are in the Navy, and told me all about the bureaucratic BS they’ve had to wade through over the years. If it weren’t for that, I would probably be recruiter meat too. So sorry to hear about your experience, drgnrdr07.

As for me, I’m keeping my freedom.

I joined when I was 20, but wasn’t quite dumb enough to not get the promise in writing. I demanded Naval Construction and got it in writing from Washington. That way they couldn’t renege without letting me out.

I didn’t get the field I wanted because of the needs of the service, so instead of being a surveyor/draftsman type person, I ended up being an electrician. Turns out my scores for language aptitude, and for being someone who sits in a room listening to code were off the charts. They tried to convince me to switch to another specialty, but I declined. Probably for the best, considering the money I’m now making.

Can’t complain. I signed the papers. If I didn’t negotiate the best deal for myself, it’s my bad. I would suggest the same for you.

Recruiters are by their nature lieing scumbags. When I was a Senior in highschool I got a call from the Army (the navy people were much cooler). Basically the guy goes on for about five minutes on how I’m a genius and that I had one of the highest ASVAB scores he had seen. I tell him that I had to be even smarter than that because I managed to score such a high score WITHOUT EVER TAKING THE TEST! I knew that taking test pretty much joining the mailing list from hell and that I had no desire to join any of the armed services especially the Army (I’m a complete coward, I’m lazy, and I look like an ass with a buzzcut). There is no way in hell I would have taken the test. I bet the moron probibly had a freaking script. Then he tries to get the names out of everybody I know including my gf, so I start making up names.

I do have friends and other people I know that joined the Army or the recruites and they all have the same story.

1.They are promised because of their scores (most of my friends are fairly smart), that they are going to have some great job in intellegence or something similar. Most become truck drivers. Of course the Army needs drivers and it is a very useful job, but to lie to kids and say with almost absolute certainty that they can get a certain job is misleading and wrong.
2. They are promised something called the buddy program where they get to be in the same unit as the friend they signed up with. The program was discontinued years ago.
3. Lastly they are tricked into signing up for more years than they want to.


Hey dragon, give me a shout sometime. I’m one of the space cadets that work next door, and I live in Hampton. AFAIK, I’m the only other Doper on the Peninsula, but there are a couple others in Norfolk and VA Beach that I haven’t met yet.

Can’t help you with your enlistment woes, however.


So, basically, you think our servicemen are fools and deserve anything that happens to them. I bet you get the giggles every time you hear about one of them getting shot up in Iraq.

Oh, apologies, dragonrdr7, I see that you were mocking yourself. I thought someone else was mocking you. Carry on.

Awesome. I can’t believe that bitching about my situation actually lead to something good (meeting another doper). I figured I would just blow off steam about my situation. I don’t mean to be so harsh on the AF. It really has given me a lot of things and shown me what I am truly made of. I just don’t think it is neccesary to lie to people to get them to join(although, maybe it is).

1010011010 Not getting the programming job didn’t have to do with my subscores on the ASVAB.

IIRC there were a lot of very smart people in WWII who were not necessarily assigned to jobs that made full use of their intellect. You’ve got 4 years of room and board and some back end, highly useful, veterans bennies as a result of your service. Make the most of your time to learn as much as you can about everything.

A lot of programming jobs are bing outsourced to people making $ 3.00 an hour in India. Being an experienced institutional cook might pay better by the time you re-renter the workforce.