The Value of My Life

One of my friends says I’m crazy when I speak about joining the military because he throws out the idea. What if you die in the military? First of all dying in the military is very slim, in fact during the peak of the Global War on Terrorism the chances of you dying when enlisted in the Army or Marine Corps are less than 1%. Now that the wars are over the chances are even slimmer.

He has also asked what if I lose an arm or a leg? As a formal federal employee who saw hundreds of thousands of people get hired I can tell you if I lost an arm or a leg that would make me a ten point disabled veteran and would put me at the top of every job vacancy I applied to.(see excerpt below)

Now that we have discussed your preference eligibility and the associated points, let’s discuss preference groups. Preference eligibles are divided into four basic groups as follows:

CPS – Disability rating of 30% or more (10 points)

CP – Disability rating of at least 10% but less than 30% (10 points)

XP – Disability rating less than 10% (10 points)

TP – Preference eligibles with no disability rating (5 points)

NOTE: Disabled veterans receive 10 points regardless of their disability rating.

When agencies use a numerical rating and ranking system to determine the best qualified applicants for a position, an additional 5 or 10 points are added to the numerical score of qualified preference eligible veterans

When an agency does not use a numerical rating system, preference eligibles who have a compensable service-connected disability of 10 percent or more (CPS, CP) are placed at the top of the highest category on the referral list (except for scientific or professional positions at the GS-9 level or higher). XP and TP preference eligibles are placed above non-preference eligibles within their assigned category.

He also thinks I am crazy because I don’t fear dying. He shouldn’t be surprised to hear that considering my past: Most people would watch and do nothing if they saw a group of black people stealing someone’s purse. I of course attempt to fight them singlehandely. Most people would actually go away after being rejected by the military. I actually wrote my congressman to force them to take me.

Most people fear dying because it is unknown, but why fear something that occurs naturally? My accounting professor for both my introductory classes said something very interesting. The only things in life you can not avoid are death and taxes. He’s right about the taxes, I actually checked online. If you happen to die in the year, someone must file your tax return. If you owe taxes, then the IRS can seize whatever assets or make your estate pay.

So it should come as no surprise when I say I don’t value my life very highly. I don’t worry about dying but I do worry that I will get old one day and be lonely. I saw it everyday at the Census, older men who fantasize about younger women who go to the bar afterwork and drink.

In fact I think that I would actually be worth more in life than in death (sort of like Tupac Shakur). I currently have no net worth and generate no income since I am unemployed. However if I join the military I can have steady income and if I should die my mother gets a $250K life insurance policy. Then she could actually get the house she wants.

So this friend has been trying to get me to see his therapist. He says I actually have psychological issues that need counseling. In college and during the time I was kicked out I was required to seek psychological help. Although I saw several psychiatrists and therapists during college their diagnosis were all the same: I was normal and had no chemical imbalances or mental illnesses; I did have anxiety and depression caused by school, family and friends. My friend does not believe their diagnosis is correct because I didn’t actually pay them (fee scaled or part of the college comprehensive fee). Therefore they aren’t good enough to diagnose that I really have a chemical imbalance or mental illness. He says I should see his therapist because he highly values her opinion (perhaps she is world renowned)



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2 responses to “The Value of My Life

  1. Grover Mannings

    Hello Dick,

    I read with interest your blog entries. There seems to be some common threads in your writing:

    1. Educating oneself to the highest level possible with a variety of marketable job skills.

    2. Working at the most elite companies earning the most elite salary possible.

    3. Hopeless attraction to 9’s and 10’s and the inability to “convert” these feelings into a viable relationship.

    With respect to number one, I think you need to decide what your really want to do before committing yourself to further education. Let’s face it, it has been 10 years since you were studying for your initial bachelor’s degree; and to this day you continue to take classes.

    Although constantly educating yourself during the course of the last 13 years (starting with your matriculation to college in 1998) is an enviable achievement , there comes a point when you have to throw the books out the window and get down to brass tacks.

    With respect to number two, you need to find a job – any job – and work it hard for a year or two, even if it only pays $40,000 a year and has demanding hours. You need to find something that excites you and inspires you to get up every day and go to work. Don’t choose one job over another based solely on remuneration and benefits. Take a job that you will not complain about most of the time.

    In your mind, the only worthwhile career is analytical financial work at top companies like Goldman Sachs, Moody’s, or J.P. Morgan-Chase. Yes, these jobs are highly desirable and can be financially rewarding, but don’t forget what happened 3 years ago: these three companies and many others contributed to the USA’s most dramatic financial collapse since the Great Depression. While top Wall Street bankers raked in millions of dollars in bonus money and took hand-outs from the government, Main Street America (the other 99.9% of us) lost their retirement savings, 401ks, and other wealth management tools. Thanks to Wall Street, my parents, who are civil servants, will have to work into their 70’s because the financial crisis decimated their retirement savings by 40%.

    Do you really want to be party to such greed and deceit?

    Finally, with respect to number three: you are attracted to who you are attracted to. No one is asking you to compromise your standards or “settle” for an overweight, unattractive woman who spends most of her time eating fast food or sitting on the crapper.

    There comes a time, however, when your extreme standards of attractiveness in the opposite sex exclude you from having meaningful relationships before you find that special someone.

    Have you had a steady girlfriend for 6 months or more?

    Have you had a sexual relationship with any girl?

    More importantly, do you constantly introduce yourself to the gorgeous women you like, asking them for their phone numbers or for a lunch date?

    My guess is still “No”.

    No one is saying that you’re not worthy of an amazing women. What I am saying is you will have to work extremely hard to achieve that goal, each day and every day, regardless of how many times you get rejected.

    You don’t have to settle for Roseanne Bar. You will find a great girl, but you can’t wait for her to happen along. You have to consistently test the waters and put yourself out on the market. More importantly, you’ll gain confidence from this type of behavior, and that will make you even more attractive. Learn the ropes with experience and don’t be afraid to have interim relationships before you put a ring on someone’s finger.


    Grover Mannings

  2. Grover Mannings

    PS, my cousin is in the Navy and was recently promoted to Captain. Next stop, Admiral 🙂 His specialty is nuclear engineering.

    Boring to me, but he loves it.

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