In the U.S. Army (where the servicemen are
called soldiers), a private entering the service earns $17,611 a
year as of 2011. The maximum base pay for a staff sergeant with at least 6 years in the service is
$34,088 a year.
salary (2011-2012) for rank-and-file members of the House and
Senate is $174,000 per year.
Either somebody is underpaid or another
group is vastly overpaid.