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Calgunners in Service This forum is a place for our active duty and deployed members to share, request and have a bit of home where ever they are.

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  #1  
Old 12-14-2012, 5:42 PM
kdglock kdglock is offline
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Default Is it true that the National Guard is a joke , no offense

First let me explain the question, Im coming off of my initial active duty commitment of 4 years, leaving Ft Campbell next month, when I enlisted my recruiter never told me that I had to join an drilling unit guard/reserves to complete my initial 8 yrs under the active first program, whatever F him, I can deal with a weekend and 2 weeks. So I found a E5 slot with an aviation support battalion with CA N.guard,but everyone tells me that im better off in the reserves becuse the Guard is crap, like I mentioned no offense but that is the word among the active duty community. Of course this is a generalization but is there a difference between Guard versus Reserves. My opinion is that we are all brothers in arms and anyone that went through basic training has my utmost respect. Potential for E6 is also a factor, thankyou all.

Last edited by kdglock; 12-14-2012 at 6:02 PM..
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  #2  
Old 12-14-2012, 6:22 PM
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Them's fightin' words there partner



But, seriously, it depends on your unit the same way it does anywhere else. There are good units and bad units everywhere. I've had great experiences with my guard unit, even if there is the occasional rough/stupid patch, and when we deployed to Afghanistan we got nothing but praise from the active guys we worked with. I've heard others are not so lucky.

I don't know about promotions in Guard vs Reserves, so I can't comment on that. What I can tell you is that California is broke as ****, and it hits the Guard pretty hard sometimes. I have no idea if it hits the reserves in California the same way.
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  #3  
Old 12-14-2012, 6:27 PM
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Well the answer is yes and no, it really depends on the unit.

I did the opposite, first joined the reserve for 3 years and then went active for 3 years.

My personal experience is that the reserve is pretty laid back, as well as the national guard.

Can't speak for the national guard but the people I work with in the reserve have some pretty awesome civilian jobs.

So my advice is to check them both out, try to find someone in the unit that will tell you the truth.
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Old 12-14-2012, 6:45 PM
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I gotta join ASAP before I transition out of Active, so really no time to do indepth research , no disrespect Sgt Loco but that is the general feeling at least here at Ft campell about the guard, but im openminded and realize that there are good and bad units in the Guard/Reserves/Active sometimes we get lucky and alot times we don't. The state being broke does bother me a bit though. I realize this is kinda of a dumbass thread on my part becuze everyone has an opinion and I guess boots on the ground is the only way to find out.
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Old 12-14-2012, 6:59 PM
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The ONLY way to get any idea of what you would be getting into is to talk to someone in the component and unit you would be joining. Otherwise, you're going into it blind the way you go into everything else in the army.

Personally, based off my limited experience working with reserve soldiers, Guard is better. Reserves is like the forgotten step child of the Army in a lot of cases. But again, that is just based off what I have seen personally- your experience may vary.

I like Guard for one because I like the option to be employed by the state (when they can afford it) and because I believe in the concept. As a soldier in the Guard, you defend not only the country, but your very home. You're not in some ****ty, cookie cutter E-5 and below barracks with a roommate who smells like feet- you are in your house. When you deploy, you're not fighting for the abstract concept of "the people" that you develop as an active duty soldier, you're fighting for the people you see and interact with every day. There's a lot of difference, and I think it's a good difference. I really believe in the "citizen soldier" ideal.

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  #6  
Old 12-14-2012, 7:09 PM
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it all depends on the unit. where is the aviation unit? the one a Los Al is pretty good from what i have been told. no one ever leaves it.

the reserves can be screwed up like the guard and again it all depends on the unit. promotion in the guard is a little hard to come by and the reserves is a little easier because there are more slots available.
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  #7  
Old 12-14-2012, 7:12 PM
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Anythings a joke compared to the marines!

haha just kidding im not a moto doosher its all what you are looking to do and what you want to get out of it.
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  #8  
Old 12-14-2012, 7:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kdglock View Post
I gotta join ASAP before I transition out of Active, so really no time to do indepth research , no disrespect Sgt Loco but that is the general feeling at least here at Ft campell about the guard, but im openminded and realize that there are good and bad units in the Guard/Reserves/Active sometimes we get lucky and alot times we don't. The state being broke does bother me a bit though. I realize this is kinda of a dumbass thread on my part becuze everyone has an opinion and I guess boots on the ground is the only way to find out.
Why not just go into the IRR and make in informed decision between the Guard of Reserves rather than rushing into one, with nothing more than the word of mouth from your friends at campell?
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  #9  
Old 12-14-2012, 7:33 PM
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NG/Reserves being a joke depends on the unit. I've been with good and bad. Promotions look to be better in the reserves.

Don't expect your days to go like AD days. They start earlier and end later, and ask for a lot to get done in a little bit of time. It's also a PITA to keep your soldiers up on their taskers between drills. The Army kind of becomes secondary to your everyday job, so they take a back seat.
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Old 12-14-2012, 7:39 PM
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laabstract Im in a contract that sends me directly to a Guard/reserve unit, its called Active First, like I mentioned above the recruiter never once mentioned it, its hidden and says must go SELECT, meaning a drilling unit not IRR, had the JAG guys look at it and no way out, like I said no biggie, just glad to be coming home.
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Old 12-14-2012, 7:41 PM
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Originally Posted by TMcGuff View Post
Anythings a joke compared to the marines!
THIS.
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  #12  
Old 12-14-2012, 7:43 PM
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chris, the battalion is in Torrance, not sure where the unit. cant recall the name, gotta talk to the transition guy after xmas and decide and swear in. Close to home is a def. plus
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Old 12-14-2012, 7:45 PM
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Originally Posted by kdglock View Post
laabstract Im in a contract that sends me directly to a Guard/reserve unit, its called Active First, like I mentioned above the recruiter never once mentioned it, its hidden and says must go SELECT, meaning a drilling unit not IRR, had the JAG guys look at it and no way out, like I said no biggie, just glad to be coming home.
It seems kind of strange that you're just now finding out you have to make this switch, and that your recruiter didn't tell you any of this. What did you think you were signing? In my mind "Active First" implies that there is some kind of second step. Not exactly hidden

We all do stupid things when first enlisting, I'm pretty convinced. No 17-18 year old should be left to his own devices when signing his life away. Are you sure you didn't just misunderstand?
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  #14  
Old 12-14-2012, 7:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kdglock View Post
laabstract Im in a contract that sends me directly to a Guard/reserve unit, its called Active First, like I mentioned above the recruiter never once mentioned it, its hidden and says must go SELECT, meaning a drilling unit not IRR, had the JAG guys look at it and no way out, like I said no biggie, just glad to be coming home.
Oh man that sucks! I have never heard of that crazy contract.
In that case. In my training experience I would say the NG is a little bit more squared away than the Reserves. But like mentioned earlier, it varies per unit.
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Old 12-14-2012, 7:47 PM
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xpbxbrox, didnt understand your comment above
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Old 12-14-2012, 8:21 PM
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Originally Posted by kdglock View Post
xpbxbrox, didnt understand your comment above
Just messing around

"THIS" means I agree with what was being quoted
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Old 12-14-2012, 8:26 PM
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Sgt Loco, that term I researched on my own, contract does not say active first its a program that recruiters had as an option, but my fault your right yea i tend to trust people, reason I asked Guard versus Reserves, just wanted get some opinions, not life lessons or how stupid I be. Laabstract thanks for your input about the Guard, and thanks everyone else,
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Old 12-15-2012, 6:53 AM
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Originally Posted by kdglock View Post
Sgt Loco, that term I researched on my own, contract does not say active first its a program that recruiters had as an option, but my fault your right yea i tend to trust people, reason I asked Guard versus Reserves, just wanted get some opinions, not life lessons or how stupid I be. Laabstract thanks for your input about the Guard, and thanks everyone else,
No problem sorry I could have not been a bigger help since I am not in the guard or reserve, but spent a bit of time with each.
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  #19  
Old 12-16-2012, 12:20 PM
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National Guard isnt a joke... they are just more "relaxed" in terms of standards.

I still remember when the NG unit that was replaced our section down range rolled up with all the schools/badges pinned above their name tapes
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Old 12-16-2012, 12:44 PM
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Now, Im not a guardsman nor do i have the desire to become one but in my experience every guardsman that i have met has said its a joke. I know MANY guys who were guardsman and they all laugh at it. Im sure some cats enjoy it though, i guess it depends on what you like. Id reccomend the reserves over the guard though IF you had to choose one. But, if IRR is an option do that in lieu of the other two. Having been on active duty you'll most likely hate the atmosphere of reserve units. Just my .02 though.
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Old 12-16-2012, 1:01 PM
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I would go reserve but I know there are some great guard unit out there.

I know a Vietnam vet who is a SSG in the guard and deployed to Iraq.

You wanna work for Uncle Sam or California?
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Old 12-18-2012, 10:29 AM
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Disadvantage to the Guard is they're broke. When you train, no miles, blanks, or sims. You pretty much yell, "BANG BANG BUDGET CUT!!!" When you shoot unless you get to do an NTC rotation.
Promotions are kind of slim in certain ranks.
Advantages is that you may be able to get on a state side assignment like if there is another boarder mission, if there is an emergency ect.

With Reserves you have federal funding which is great but no stateside assignments.

It's very relaxed compared to active duty so you will have a culture shock. I remember earlier this year we had this Marine Sgt just coming off active duty and come to out unit, he couldnt believe the difference on how laid back it was but also, there could be a lot more petty ****. Your mileage may very but I hear the unit in Los Al is a good unit.
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Old 12-18-2012, 6:25 PM
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definition of IRR-Iraqi replacement regiment
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Old 12-18-2012, 6:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kdglock View Post
First let me explain the question, Im coming off of my initial active duty commitment of 4 years, leaving Ft Campbell next month, when I enlisted my recruiter never told me that I had to join an drilling unit guard/reserves to complete my initial 8 yrs under the active first program, whatever F him, I can deal with a weekend and 2 weeks. So I found a E5 slot with an aviation support battalion with CA N.guard,but everyone tells me that im better off in the reserves becuse the Guard is crap, like I mentioned no offense but that is the word among the active duty community. Of course this is a generalization but is there a difference between Guard versus Reserves. My opinion is that we are all brothers in arms and anyone that went through basic training has my utmost respect. Potential for E6 is also a factor, thankyou all.
They call the California ANG the **** your buddy program, speaks for itself and thats the airforce.
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Old 12-18-2012, 6:32 PM
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definition of IRR-Iraqi replacement regiment
Or- Inactive Ready Reserve

I don't get it
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Old 12-19-2012, 4:14 PM
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I didn't go into the Guard or Reserve when I got out (prior to Iraq and Afghanistan) because while on active duty I saw my share of poorly trained no discipline troops from both. An example would be the platoon training area my squad stumbled on while we were out in the field, it was 9am, everyone of em was still racked out with all their weapons stacked neatly outside the tents just begging to be liberated. We thought about effing with them and moving the weapons but decided against it as we didn't want our intentions to be mis-construed and didn't really want our last day in the woods to be spent on lockdown.
That being said we have had multiple Guardsmen and Reservists come in as customers and they seem to all have their heads on straight, many have had multiple tours so the training has become a lot more serious. I'd say now would be good time to be either.
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Old 12-19-2012, 4:16 PM
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INDIVIDUAL Ready Reserve.

I did more in the reserves than I ever did on active duty.
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Old 12-21-2012, 10:30 PM
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I have been with good and bad units in the National Guard. Some are better than others.
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Old 12-21-2012, 10:47 PM
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Don't do it!!!! The S*** Bag ratio is extremely high in the Guard. Especially coming of active duty. It might make your head explode.
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Old 12-22-2012, 10:21 AM
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Don't do it!!!! The S*** Bag ratio is extremely high in the Guard. Especially coming of active duty. It might make your head explode.
No offense, but that's anecdotal at best. In my unit, the ones who seem the most ate the **** up are the ones who came to us off of active duty
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Old 12-22-2012, 8:58 PM
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No offense, but that's anecdotal at best. In my unit, the ones who seem the most ate the **** up are the ones who came to us off of active duty
I AGREE...
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Old 12-27-2012, 9:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kdglock View Post
First let me explain the question, Im coming off of my initial active duty commitment of 4 years, leaving Ft Campbell next month, when I enlisted my recruiter never told me that I had to join an drilling unit guard/reserves to complete my initial 8 yrs under the active first program, whatever F him
So your recruiter never told you, huh? So you're telling me that your NATIONAL GUARD recruiter never told you that you were joining the NATIONAL GUARD even after you signed your name to that contract at MEPS inside the NATIONAL GUARD office and that contract you signed was for the NATIONAL GUARD Active First program?
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Old 12-27-2012, 3:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kdglock View Post
First let me explain the question, Im coming off of my initial active duty commitment of 4 years, leaving Ft Campbell next month, when I enlisted my recruiter never told me that I had to join an drilling unit guard/reserves to complete my initial 8 yrs under the active first program, whatever F him, I can deal with a weekend and 2 weeks. So I found a E5 slot with an aviation support battalion with CA N.guard,but everyone tells me that im better off in the reserves becuse the Guard is crap, like I mentioned no offense but that is the word among the active duty community. Of course this is a generalization but is there a difference between Guard versus Reserves. My opinion is that we are all brothers in arms and anyone that went through basic training has my utmost respect. Potential for E6 is also a factor, thankyou all.
half the troops in Astan are national guard/reserves. desert storm we were activated B 1/126FA they also did tours inthis iraq/astan bs. i did 18 years. last duty was 40ID HHQ 2/185th ammo.
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Old 12-27-2012, 4:16 PM
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Soldier, my advice to you would be this, do some research with members of the different units you might be assigned to along with discussions with yes, even the recruiters. Once you make a decision and commit to an assignment, man up and squash that petty guard/reserve/active Army ****! There is no place for it in today's ever shrinking military and if we are going to do more with less, we better learn to deal with the small differences and move on.

On a lighter note, thanks for serving!

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Old 12-28-2012, 10:12 AM
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Also...part of the NATIONAL GUARD CONTRACT that you signed states that you can forego the NATIONAL GUARD portion of the NATIONAL GUARD CONTRACT that YOU HAD EXPLAINED TO YOU IN DETAIL AT MEPS AND DECIDED TO SIGN if you elect to stay in the active army. Sounds to me like you just want to go into the IRR or get out all together instead of fulfilling your contract. Which is fine. Do that. However your bonus (your substantial bonus, I might add) will be recouped. It's up to you.
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Old 12-28-2012, 10:46 AM
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I don't got a clue what I'm talking about, BUT......

a lawyer friend of mine said the bottom line is they own you, and any of these "contracts" are "unless we(Army) unilaterally decide otherwise".

That is how they can just issue "stop loss order" and stuff like that.

Sure, on individual level MOST of the time they follow the contract.

Wasn't there some urban legend about some guys from 'Nam era who got forced to stay in Army for a 'career' span of 20yrs just because the Army wanted to study "career" enlistees/conscript performance and compare with the more common short term of service of teenagers.
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Old 12-30-2012, 11:35 AM
Davidncf Davidncf is offline
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Currently I am a E-5 in the California Army National Guard, and I am in one of the 4 Infantry Battalions in the CA Guard. One thing between the Guard and the Reserves, from what I have seen, all MOS in the Reserves are support MOS. The Infantry and Tank units are all in the Guard. Their are some good units and some bad units, just like you have in the Active duty military. You do get a lot of oppurtunities to do a lot of different thngs in the Guard. I recently just got back from a Training deployment to Germany and I did a NTC rotation this past may. And we have a lot of different missions overseas coming up as well.
The Guard is lax at times, and they do try to cram a lot into a weekend. We usually have first formation at 0700 and unless we are in the field, we are off between 1700-2000. In the field, sometimes a little longer, depending on what we are doing. Thru the CalGuard their are lots of oppurtunities for different full time jobs as well. Best place to look is at the Calguard website. You can find what units are in the CalGuard as well as jobs and such.
For me, it was hard to adjust, but only because of few things. 1) I was a active duty Marine for 13 years, 2) I had a 6 year break in service, and 3) Wehn I enlisted in the Guard, I was 37. I still do a 260 APFT though, so I am not complaining.
As for the dirt bags, the Guard is cracking down, and they arestarting to proces out more MND, AWOL and idiots who get poped for drugs.
All in all, it is what you make it.
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  #38  
Old 12-30-2012, 5:28 PM
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FMFdevildoc FMFdevildoc is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by winnre View Post
INDIVIDUAL Ready Reserve.

I did more in the reserves than I ever did on active duty.
THIS !!!

579 days on active duty, NOT counting weekend drills - training.

579 days on active duty & I routinely get the "Well, you are only a reservist. No, sorry, you do not qualify because your active duty service was not twenty-four continuous months" red tape from the government every corner I turn.

I entered into reserve military right off the streets, then volunteered for (as mentioned previously) a ton of active duty + deployment. 579 days on active duty = $538 a month, maximum, GI bill FYI...

While not in the Army, I can say the consensus seems to be universal - it all depends upon one's unit of assignment. Naturally, one's Enlisted specialty as well. I personally, am looking to transition over to National Guard shortly. Primarily, for ability to (possibly) get one of a few MOS I am interested in. Also, the ability to do mobilization / deployment OR stateside missions. Just in my mind's eye, I feel that would help me have a great sense of purpose.

FYI - I am not bitter about being shortchanged on benefits and what-not. I am 100% proud of my service and glad that I have done my proverbial and literal part for god & country. Besides, not everyone gets to be a Fleet Marine Force Corpsman - which is the BEST rate in the Navy (Rate is MOS for all you Army dogs, hooah? LOL
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  #39  
Old 12-30-2012, 6:26 PM
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BrianRodela BrianRodela is offline
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Right on Doc! Thanks for being there!

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  #40  
Old 12-30-2012, 8:11 PM
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What aviation unit in calif? Did 10yrs in a NG Avn unit in stockton...

I have been in the army reserves, national guard and now the USAF reserves....they all have the same ups and downs...active duty ain't no better,our active components at the air base do the same job we do and we all train to the same standard...been doing this for 20yrs now...
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