Flyboy, Bullet here again. Still just a WSO, but the pilots I fly with sometimes let me carry their helmet bags to the jet!
OK, I finally have to put my 2 cents towards your question. It will be a little long, so sit back, relax, and grab something cold to drink as you read this (in your case, it better be either a cola product, a water or a juice!
OK, so you want to know which service has the better pilots? You even put your question on both the AF and Navy threads, hoping to get both sides of the story. (But in my opinion, all you'll get is biased bickering based on pride, one thread for the Navy and one thread for the AF, and not based on unbiased comparisons of the 2. Plus a warning from the mods telling you to keep the same types of posts in one forum).
You've maturely and correctly handled the standard "we land on carriers, so we're better" argument posted on the Navy forum. Landing on a pitching deck in a storm is a great feat of piloting skill, and I salute my Navy brothers for that skill, especially their courage and professionalism displayed daily in their amazing act of landing that way. Heaven knows, I wouldn't want to do it for a living! But it is just that, a skill. If the AF thought their pilots needed this skill, they would be trained on it and they would practice it. The AF has its own arguments why they don't think they need to do it. I could get further into this debate, but ultimately the debate IS POINTLESS! What makes great pilots, and what gets the respect of those either in the ready room or the squadron bar, are those who are the best at ACCOMPLISHING THE MISSION. Let me make an example, which I am paraphrasing from some famous (at least in the aviation community) quotes debating the merits of air-to-air fighters versus air-to-ground fighters: "If, after your sortie, you get back to the ready room only to find a bunch of Russians drinking your Scotch, toasting each other with your bar glasses over their victory, does it really matter if you hit the 3-wire?"
So, I've now shown you that it's mission accomplishment that determines the best pilots. So, which service gets the mission accomplished better? I have to say: ALL OF THEM! The US Navy is not about to declare war on the USAF, nor visa versa (well, perhaps only at the Academies, and then only on an athletic field). Is the President going to say, "We have a tough mission. Send only the XXXXXX pilots!" Never. We proudly fight jointly as a team, services side by side. What you'll really find is that all the US services have outstanding pilots, and all have some not-so-outstanding pilots. Each share equally in skill. What matters most, and what really matters to the country we are sworn to protect, is that as a country we have the best pilots in the world, with the best training, and flying the best aircraft the world has ever seen. Heaven help the poor sap dictator who foolishly decides to threaten our country's citizens or interests. It won't matter if the sidewinder that shoots down his warplane came from a Navy jet, an Air Force Jet, or a Marine jet; one of us will get 'em. And heaven help him if he sends his tanks against us; our Apaches will make short work of his "Mother of All Armies". No, what matters is that all the airpower in our entire military acts as a team, and without a doubt that team is the best in the world. (See how lucky you are to be born in this great country!)
So, I've shown you that the quality of pilots from every service is pretty much equal, and we fight together in the defense of this great nation Each service's pilots match each other in skill, dedication, courage, and professionalism. Now, which service should YOU choose? Like others have posted before me, it should come down to what your personal preferences are. Some argue that in the Navy and Marines, you'll spend months away from home at sea, while in the AF you have a more stable family life. That paradigm has left the building long ago. We in the AF now deploy with regular frequency, for months at a time and to locations that we usually can't pronounce or have "stan" somewhere in the name, all under the Aerospace Expeditionary Air Force model. (Just ask Pima or my kids, who have had to celebrate many a special occasion with only an e-mail from me.). Maybe not as often in a timeline as our Navy and Marie brothers and sisters, and certainly not even close to my Army compatriots as they fight this current war, but it' getting close. So, in this service of our country, each service member is now making similar sacrifices as to amount of time away from home.
So, investigate other factors. Look at the mission each service performs. You haven't mentioned what type of aircraft you want to pilot. Any interest in Long Range Bombers? Awesome machines with tremendous firepower and capabilities. Want to go there, AF it is! How about helos? No one does attack helo ops better than my brothers and sisters in the Army and the Marines. How about transports? See the world (multiple times), perform an important cog in our military's might, and be the first to be hired by United when you retire in 20+ years. Like that, then go AF! Fighters? I could go on forever about how great each of the AF's, Navy's and Marine' jets are. (However, none can come close to touching my jet, the F-15E! The best fighter in the world, and I'll be glad to argue this to anyone, anytime. But it will have to be by PM, because the debate will involve a lot of grunting, shouting, and bumping of chests!
) (person flying always claims his / her jet and his / her squadron mates are the best, bar none)
If it isn't the mission, then it may be other factors that help you make your decision. You haven't posted what your requirements are, so I don't know where to start. Give me a list, I'll gladly share my opinion (and I'll try to be less "long-winded")
Bottom Line: no one service can lay claim that they "own" the best pilots (people who make this claim are usually either on their fifth beer, or are on the outside looking in). We fight as a joint team, and always will, equal in skill and capability. No, what will help you make your decision is asking yourself what do you want to do during your career. Only you can make that decision.
And I'm spent.