Since the end of conscription in 1973, the question of what to do with the Selective Service System has been asked again and again. The author, a former Director of Selective Service, reviews the history of registration since the advent of the all-volunteer force. He highlights the original decision to place the Selective Service System in "deep standby," the decision to suspend registration, and then President Carter's decision to reinstate registration in 1980. He then considers each of the arguments President Clinton made in 1994: the "low-cost insurance" argument, the "society's link to the armed forces" argument, and the "committed population" and "showing resolve" argument in light of the history and current state of Selective Service. Finally, the author examines the current registration program and offers alternatives.
Rostker, Bernard D., What to Do with the Selective Service System? Historical Lessons and Future Posture. Santa Monica, CA: RAND Corporation, 2018. https://www.rand.org/pubs/perspectives/PE197.html.
Rostker, Bernard D., What to Do with the Selective Service System? Historical Lessons and Future Posture, RAND Corporation, PE-197-RC, April 2018. As of November 29, 2023: https://www.rand.org/pubs/perspectives/PE197.html