The three day-1 female Ranger-School recycles have reported passed RAP week once again.
Some additional information came out from the last go-round:
Male students who had women in their patrols also failed at an unusually high rate, the sources said.
That is interesting, as there are multiple possible explanations for this, but none of them support the idea that women contribute equally, much less add, to the fight.
There is also some grumbling that the course may not be “fair” to women, that RIs didn’t want to pass women, although this man deserves some recognition for sticking to his guns:
Brig. Gen. James E. Rainey, the commandant of the U.S. Army Infantry School at Fort Benning, disputed that any Ranger instructor maliciously intended to hold female students back.
“The women did worse than men at patrolling,” he said. “That’s a fact.”
Someone calling a spade a spade, without the usual platitudinous and condescending mewling about how impressed everyone was with the women’s effort, is unusual. He also said that
But he said Ranger School officials are looking at whether “subjective grading and objective grading” by the instructors contributed to the failure of women at the school.
“We don’t really have enough data to draw a conclusion on this,” Rainey said. “We have a pretty rigorous and detailed system that we use, and we’re learning a lot along the way.”
Yes, the objective grading of the women led to their failure at the school – they did worse than they had to in order to pass. The article also correctly notes that most guys who don’t pass feel that “they was robbed.” On the other hand, I failed a phase; I know I didn’t do very well on my initial patrols, and so was disappointed I had to re-do it, but understood why.
Anyway, we also now have enough information to look at the opportunity cost of putting women through Ranger school. Recall that these women went through pre-Ranger training courses, and some were even training for months specifically for this event, so they can be considered representative of the pool of women eligible for attending the school, and not the larger pool of much-less-capable women in the Army.
At the Pre-ranger courses, 19% of the women passed while 55% of the men did. There are slightly different numbers here (14% vs 45%), probably from different iterations of the pre-ranger course. One of the iterations had 1/17 women pass, although I’m willing to accept that class as an outlier.
What this tells us is that males have approximately 3x the success rate of women in pre-Ranger courses, and I’ll define this as the “Yield Ratio”:
(Male Completion %) : (Female completion %) = 55% : 19% = 2.9
That means that you’d have to send 3 women to get the effective yield of sending 1 man to the course. This is costly in terms of time spent. That is 6 slots (or 3 passed soldiers, based on a 50% male success rate, or 67% overall waste) that are wasted.
This is not an efficient use of time or resources even before looking at other effects on combat effectiveness, and we haven’t even gotten to the school or units or combat yet.
The first article linked also says that “historically, more than half” of the people who pass the pre-Ranger complete Ranger school. We might therefore reasonably expect that the pre-Ranger course is a decent (though not good – the course could obviously be improved) predictor of performance in the School. Was it?
No, it was not. With all 19 women failing to get past Darby on the first go-round, pre-Ranger is obviously not a good predictor of performance for women. For yield-ratio math, this creates some divide-by-zero errors, meaning that we’d have to send infinite numbers of women to get an actual graduate. This is obviously uneconomical.
With Ranger School graduation rates somewhere in the 45% range overall (depending on which source you read – some say 30%, some say 50%), the yield ratio, charitably assuming that all 3/19 original women now pass the Day-1 recycle, is
45% / 19% = 2.9
Very similar to the pre-ranger yield.
Now, this is where it gets interesting. Looking at the yield ratios for the pipeline (Pre-Ranger->Ranger School,, and assuming the remaining 3 women pass the school, and are not counted as new candidates) we find that the effects are multiplicative:
Assuming the pass rates mentioned above for each step, and starting numbers of each sex at 100, the yield ratio becomes 8.1x. If only 2 women pass, the ratio is 12.4x. If one woman passes, the ratio is 24.6x. At a minimum, though, we have to send 8x the women through the course as men to get a Ranger-qualified soldier, which represents 87% waste in the process.
This is somewhat academic; the actual ratios may vary, but they are illustrative of the totally idiotic decision to do this when the outcomes are thoroughly predictable. We don’t know exactly how much of a waste this is, but we know it’s a “profoundly costly” waste of resources that could be used for smoking ISIS. How many slots at the so-far-unmodified school will the Army waste in its pursuit to find find that one special Ranger?
It is also illustrative of the fact that the Army will engage in whatever idiocy its political masters tell it to do in keeping with the prevailing political fashions of the day, for the Feels of the feminist careerists shrikes whose ultimate goal is the destruction of any bastion of masculinity rather than winning wars.
Ranger school gets the headlines; this is the reality.