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Posted at 9:44 AM ET, 12/ 1/2010

Presidential panel offers 2nd proposal on federal pay freeze

By Joe Davidson, Federal Diary columnist

Updated 1:39 p.m. ET
Federal employees would take a hit, along with many other parts of the government, under a plan released Wednesday by a presidential commission charged with getting the nation's finances in order. The plan would freeze pay for federal workers for three years and cut the workforce.

The proposals by the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform closely tracks some aspects of a set of proposals released last month by its chairmen, former Republican senator Alan K. Simpson of Wyoming and Erskine Bowles, a White House chief of staff during the Clinton administration.

The Federal Employees Health Benefits Program would use vouchers under one recommendation. This plan, with a projected savings of $18 billion through 2020, would transform FEHB into a fixed subsidy that grows at prescribed rates.

"For federal retirees, this subsidy could be used to pay a portion of the Medicare premium," the report said.

The commission warned that "a voucher or subsidy system holds significant promise of controlling costs, but also carries serious potential risks. To assess the balance of benefits and risks, we recommend a rigorous external review process to study the outcomes of the FEHB premium support program to determine its effects on costs, health care utilization, and health outcomes."

A vote on this report, originally scheduled for Wednesday, was postponed until Friday.

Like the earlier document, the Wednesday report released would "impose a three-year pay freeze on federal workers and Defense Department civilians" and cut the federal workforce through attrition, including Defense civilians, by 10 percent or about 200,000 positions.

For retirees, the report calls for creation of a federal worker entitlement task force to reevaluate civil service and military health and retirement programs and recommend savings of $70 billion over 10 years.

The report notes changes the task force should consider, including basing federal retirement payments on the five highest years of employee earnings, instead of the high three.

The commission also said cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs) could be deferred, and employee contributions to retirement plans could be increased.

The report also supports greater management authority for the U.S. Postal Service.

"To put the Postal Service on a path toward long-term solvency, the Commission recommends reversing restrictions that prevent the Postal Service from taking steps to survive - such as shifting to five-day delivery and gradually closing down post offices no longer able to sustain a positive cash-flow."

Fredric V. Rolando, president of the National Association of Letter Carriers, commended the report's recommendations, but noted most of the Postal Service's woes stem from a 2006 law that requires it to pay about $5.5 billion annually to prefund future retiree health benefits.

"The way to remedy the USPS's financial struggles is to allow it to make the pre-funding payment by an internal transfer from a separate, over-funded account, not to cut service and inconvenience customers, which would also imperil the Postal Service's future and destroy 80,000 jobs," Rolando said.

Leave your thoughts in the comments section below

By Joe Davidson, Federal Diary columnist  | December 1, 2010; 9:44 AM ET
Categories:  Agencies and Departments  
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Comments

Great discussion here - which is not a bad thing at all. If you follow deficit politics and commentary, you'll want to get the new Fiscal Future Daily - http://www.ourfiscalfuture.org/author/fiscalfuturedaily/ - new "relentlessly nonpartisan" daily blog posting of links, opinion and analysis.

Posted by: tomwatsonnyc | December 1, 2010 10:31 AM | Report abuse

Wow, what a week. Let's just pile on to the federal workers while we listen to the righteous indignation of those making $250k-$1M/yr who will be losing their temporary tax cuts...

Posted by: vtavgjoe | December 1, 2010 10:40 AM | Report abuse

It is amazing that neither the House or Senate recognize the biggest waste in the Federal government is the amount of contractors it employs and the hourly wages paid out to the companies.

Some where in the 80's, someone got the brain storm to start contracting everything out when possible. Currently, the average amount paid is three times the federal salary. It is common place for the executive branch agencies to pay 150 to 300 an hour for questionable skills and background qualifications. Our office pays 79 dollars a hour for a secretary. I do know that person doesn't get that money, however, it is paid from the Dept of Treasury which pays fed wages as well.

Our agency turned a small business into a billion dollar corporation in four years.

Many of the contractors do a good job, however, this is the biggest area of waste for all taxpayers. Stop blaming the federal staff for the deficit and look at the real area's of savings. You could cure the unemployment problem with the savings and by hiring more fed's.

WAKE UP WASHINGTON!!!

Posted by: jeffash99 | December 1, 2010 11:18 AM | Report abuse

Cuts through attrition aren't good enough. There are too many lazy slobs marking the days toward retirement but who aren't anywhere close to it.

Cut total positions by 20% and make everyone interview for their jobs again.

Posted by: getjiggly1 | December 1, 2010 11:22 AM | Report abuse

I am a federal employee on a military base that totally supports the soldiers in the field. That is our mission. "Lazy slob" may apply to the writer of the previous message, but certainly not to anyone here.

Any President is just a puppet; we all know that. Whoever is pulling the strings and telling him what to say and do...it's on them. And in the mean time, they should tell the health insurance companies who take money out of our paychecks NOT to increase for 3 years because of the freeze....do you see THAT happening? Of course the people who proposed this idea make a great deal of money and a freeze would not affect them....I dont have any other income coming in except my own...i dont think the gas and electric company will care either.

Posted by: incognito4 | December 1, 2010 11:32 AM | Report abuse

Incognito4 said it just right--health insurance, utilities, taxes will continue to increase, you can bet on that. And what does this freeze do to one's "highest three" to take into retirement? I have been working for the federal government for 23+ years, and have always been one to recommend a government career to people. I sure hope I didn't steer any youngster in the wrong direction........

Posted by: mauimaui | December 1, 2010 12:41 PM | Report abuse

I wonder if the retirement plans of Erskin Bowles and Alan Simpson -- a former Federal employee and former Senator, respectively -- are going to take a hit from their own recommendations? Is Congress & the President willing to give up their lucrative retirement/health plans as well, or are just civil "Federal" employess being targeted for the Royal shaft in the end?

Posted by: Viennacommuter1 | December 1, 2010 12:41 PM | Report abuse

Ouch - going to health care vouchers in place of the current FEHB plans would cause BIG premium increases for many employees and retirees. It will be interesting to see how far federal employee union lobbying efforts get with the new Republican House. I for one think they need to be in damage control mode trying to moderate cuts rather than fight them, a battle they seem sure to lose.

Posted by: davek61 | December 1, 2010 1:21 PM | Report abuse

Hey, getjiggly1, if we fire everyone and cut 20% who are they going to interview with, genius?

Posted by: ronjaboy | December 1, 2010 1:23 PM | Report abuse

Now we are talking. It's a start. I want the size and scope of the federal govt to get smaller. We don't need the number of federal workers that we have today if we plan to reduce govt regulations and the size. This is good news but it's just a start. For jeffash99 yes contractors should be the first to go.

Remember that many in private sector jobs have seen no pay raises for the last three years and many have taken pay cuts. So don't expect sympathy from others who have already gone through the same reductions in pay.

Posted by: Desertdiva1 | December 1, 2010 1:26 PM | Report abuse

I'm gonna start looking for a job outside the gov't and give up my 13 years in. It's barely worth it now, and certainly won't be after these cuts are made. I'll make more money being a contractor doing my same job.

Posted by: DJMonet | December 1, 2010 1:30 PM | Report abuse

These committee members should be ashamed of themselves. Balancing the budget by stealing from federal employees.

Why not some real cuts? What about the wars we're fighting for Big Oil and Israel?

Posted by: John991 | December 1, 2010 1:32 PM | Report abuse

Stealing from federal employees? Really? The very federal employees who are paid by raping the American people? What other rapists are you doing to defend, johnny boy?

Posted by: getjiggly1 | December 1, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse

I was so proud of becoming a member of the US Federal Gov after trying for so many years. Now I am so disappointed. . . to get into the government from the private industry, I came down $10,000. I was way more experienced that my counterparts which caused much jealousy and resentment. But, in government fairness, we were all paid the same. OPM continues to rank me over the last 10 years of government service at a GS13 level, but I receive the pay of a GS7. I help my colleages who perform the same job as I do, but receive GS13 pay. I agree with other comments that I carry the weight of supporting my family as my spouse has been unable to find a good paying, permanent job for the last three years. With this proposal, I will never reach my journeyman. I will continue to lose pay, retirement and the private sector seems the only way to go. My skill set would definitely land me a better paying job where I earn what I am worth. Why doesn't the government look at the rehired annuitant program. The big-buck supervisors who retire on Friday and start on Monday. By the way, because I joined the government late in life working 30 years for 20 to 30 percent of my salary is not realistic. I would imagine I would survive better on the private market or Welfare!

Posted by: im777forever | December 1, 2010 1:46 PM | Report abuse

Federal employees make much less than their private sector counterparts. I could easily make $25K/year more in the private sector than I do for the govt. This is the same up and down the board, at least in DoD. I am sick of people saying we make so much more than the private sector. If they freeze the federal pay, they will achieve their smaller workforce because a large majority will leave, myself included. Then what will happen? The Government will have to hire us again, as contractors this time and overpay for us! Brilliant idea!!

Posted by: crknight | December 1, 2010 1:48 PM | Report abuse

Federal employees make much less than their private sector counterparts. I could easily make $25K/year more in the private sector than I do for the govt. This is the same up and down the board, at least in DoD. I am sick of people saying we make so much more than the private sector. If they freeze the federal pay, they will achieve their smaller workforce because a large majority will leave, myself included. Then what will happen? The Government will have to hire us again, as contractors this time and overpay for us! Brilliant idea!!

Posted by: crknight | December 1, 2010 1:49 PM | Report abuse

The real issue is that the federal government is the nly employer who can meet their payroll with borrowed (deficit) money. And, while I have no animus against federal employees the truth is, the country has reached a point where, like any other employer, we must find ways to reign in our ever expanding personnel cost. Believe me, its better to have a job with frozen and/or deferred wages,and good benefits, than to be unemployed.

Posted by: PracticalIndependent | December 1, 2010 1:52 PM | Report abuse

Exactly which 10-20% are we cutting? 10-20% fewer border agents? customs officials? meat inspectors? air traffic controllers? SEC investigators? FBI agents?

Posted by: writinron | December 1, 2010 1:55 PM | Report abuse

I earned a good Federal pension from working for many, many years. I took that possibility into consideration when I left better pay in the private sector, to do honest work. To now withhold a quarter of my pension would be a breach of my employment contract.
The Constitution of the United States, Article I, Section 9, paragraph 3 provides that: "No Bill of Attainder or ex post facto Law will be passed."
"Bills of attainder, ex post facto laws, and laws impairing the obligations of contracts, are contrary to the first principles of the social compact, and to every principle of sound legislation. ... The sober people of America are weary of the fluctuating policy which has directed the public councils. ..." James Madison, Federalist Number 44, 1788.

Posted by: edwardxa12 | December 1, 2010 1:56 PM | Report abuse

I agree it is better to have a job. But I have to say that I pay a lot more for my benefits in the governmen that I did in the private industry with no where near the number of employees. Why is that? Come to think of it... the coverage was better too. How can that be? If I really think about it, I receive more income, paid less for health insurance, I had better retirement and I was in an industry that provided a service that will ALWAYS be needed. I am really not feeling very bright right now!

Posted by: im777forever | December 1, 2010 1:58 PM | Report abuse

This is another way to get more contractors on the government payroll. Do you really think that the work will go away if you reduce government? It won't that also means more work for each government employee to make up for who is gone. Then the cherry is that if you leave and have the skill sets needed to do the job you go out and come back as a contractor at twice the pay you had before and the cost for your wages will be three times what was paid when you were a government employee. The way it figures is 150 - 300 dollars per hour for a contract employee. This breaks down to maybe a three way split you get 1/3 of the 150 say 50 dollars an hour the other hundred goes to your company for there CEO and shareholder profits. Now that 50 you get will only be about 25 for you before taxes the other 25 will be the companies to pay their portion of taxes and incentives to you at the end of the year. So in the end the people who are screaming that we have too many government employees just want to pay more for contractor's to come in and do the job for three times the cost. How does that save money. Remember the work does not go away it stays there and each year there is more work to be done. So more contractors need to be hired and higher costs. Get educated on the cost of Contractor's vs. actual government workers. Good luck... lol

Posted by: Concerned5 | December 1, 2010 2:09 PM | Report abuse

I worked for the government for 30 years with many of those years in foreign countries at the height of anti-american terrorism and narco-terrorism. Carrying weapons, traveling in armored vehicles with bodyguards, and wondering if the next step you take will be your last. People seem to lose sight, or have very short memories in this great country of ours what federal employees really do to provide for the freedom we enjoy and the services citizens get from us. Those like Simpson and others that like to talk-the- talk of smaller government never mention the unbelievable money we pay defense contractors to replace the lowly paid federal employees. You can thank the Bushes and the other, mostly Republicans for the so-called out-sourcing remedy to "Big Government". They own the companies making mega-bucks replacing federal employees with contractors. Contractors making 3-4 times what their government counterparts make. Oh yeah, but they claim to save money by using contractors because the government will not have to pay benefits or retirement. Pay the big bucks now to contractors and let the country worry about taking care of these people when they reach retirement age. Or, Or, Or, We could just cut federal jobs and let some of these poorly informed people and Tea Baggers preaching less government do without services, pay checks, health insurance, veterans entitlements, Medicare, Medicaid, etc.

Posted by: greenet | December 1, 2010 2:25 PM | Report abuse

Cuts through attrition aren't good enough. There are too many lazy slobs marking the days toward retirement but who aren't anywhere close to it.

Cut total positions by 20% and make everyone interview for their jobs again.

Posted by: getjiggly1 | December 1, 2010 11:22 AM |

*******************************************

You are a total moron!

And, you know these "facts" from what, peering through a federal govt. office with your binoculars on your lunch break?! Puh-lease!!! Sit down and shut up, then realize who the real enemies are: Congress, who caused this mess and the CEO's who caused this mess and who will get there $45,000,000.00 golden parachute.

Piss off a conservative . . . think for yourself!

Posted by: TheChampishere | December 1, 2010 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Remember back in the day when the government spending was CRAZY - when the dept of defense was paying an outrageous amount for toliets, etc? Well they finally got that kind of spending under control. Now, if only they can get the world of contractors' spending under control. We could possibly get this budget tamed or a little more manageable.

Posted by: Lovely3 | December 1, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Looks great except the part about Federal workers - it doesn't go nearly far enough! 10% through attrition? Lame! Cut em NOW! Across the board by 25%.... Cut their pay by 25%... Make it easy to fire these fat, lazy slobs... Whack EM!!!!

Posted by: Capitalist-1 | December 1, 2010 2:38 PM | Report abuse

"The way to remedy the USPS's financial struggles is not to cut service and inconvenience customers, which also would imperil the Postal Service's future while costing 80,000 jobs, but rather to reverse this unnecessary congressional pre-funding mandate," Rolando said.

Huh? So he would jeopardize the retirement of his constituents and put the system on the same road to insolvency that the social security and federal employee retirement systems are on? The letter carriers need a new president!

Posted by: magellan1 | December 1, 2010 2:39 PM | Report abuse

the A......s know what they are doing.the retired ones have a shorter shelf life re voting so screw them,just as they have done to the military retiress. what is the latest on the fool and gang getting us out of craphole countries?

Posted by: pofinpa | December 1, 2010 2:47 PM | Report abuse

Corporations want tax breaks sans regulations, except for price supports and trade protections. Jobless want extended benefits, poor want taxt credits and free, high quality health care. Let's outsource all govt call centers to India; close social security offices; remove meat inspectors; Close down arsenals and buy military technology and ammo from the Chinese; import cheap labor from abroad to administer medicare and to guard the borders. Everyone wants something, but wants it for nothing. Reality is nothing is free and you get what you pay for. Fed employees are the champions of the poor, and the guardians of public health and safety. The govt is the employer of choice for our minority population. Federal pay is a red herring. Don't be a tool of the corporations and their lobbyists. The fact is, government benefits most Americans. Focus your emnity on the really fat cats, and the Wall Street types that produce no wealth for the US and make ridiculous money playing shell games with assets and waste brilliant talent on dreaming up new derivatives to sell. People should be charging the banks with torches and pitchforks instead of attacking the common federal workers. Be careful what you wish for, because you just might get it.

Posted by: doc20 | December 1, 2010 2:54 PM | Report abuse

I well remember that State Dept couldn't get enough of its workers to go to Iraq.... State's mission was to rebuild the Iraqi governing institutions - and they FAILED because they had a rank and file that was cowardly, lame, and effete. Your basic federal worker. Do these guys deserve their salary and benefits? Of course not! They can't even do their basic mission - pawning it off on the military.... What a sham. Whack EM!!! HUD? What do they do? Just get rid of it... And Congress and POTUS need to lead by example and whack their own pay....

Posted by: Capitalist-1 | December 1, 2010 3:02 PM | Report abuse

I too call for a COMPLETE boycott of HOLIDAY SHOPPING! Make homemade gifts. Send IOUs like Obama does. DO anything but spend for holiday gifts. Let Obama, Congress, and the shopkeepers know what power the 2.6 billion government workers can wield! I get tired of working just as hard and efficient as I can for this type of "symbolic behavior." Where was the "symbolic behavior" when Wall Street, the banks, and GM had to be bailed out! I am not advocating a government worker work slow down, but I for one will NOT be giving up MY LUNCH 1/2 any more for any reason or emergency at work again.
Not until the pay freeze is either voted down or done away with! And Congress - I'll be looking at the roll call. If my district's Senator or Representative is a yea then I'll be campaigning on my days off AGAINST you whether you are republican, tea party, or democrat!!
I am starting today to look for a private sector job that will pay me what I am worth, will pay for my education if it increases my efficiency on the job (the government always lays that out as a benefit, but I haven’t seen a dime toward my education and I am in my 3rd year of a Business Administration degree in contract law) – another broken promise!) Especially if they are going to attack my pension! Hell, I have to wait till I am 72 now to retire at full retirement. Go ahead, make it impossible for me to afford to retire. I’ll fight for disability on the job retirement! Go ahead! Make my day!
Signed DISGUSTED

Posted by: waternymph | December 1, 2010 3:03 PM | Report abuse

doc20 wrote:

Corporations want tax breaks sans regulations, except for price supports and trade protections. Jobless want extended benefits, poor want taxt credits and free, high quality health care. Let's outsource all govt call centers to India; close social security offices; remove meat inspectors; Close down arsenals and buy military technology and ammo from the Chinese; import cheap labor from abroad to administer medicare and to guard the borders. Everyone wants something, but wants it for nothing. Reality is nothing is free and you get what you pay for. Fed employees are the champions of the poor, and the guardians of public health and safety. The govt is the employer of choice for our minority population. Federal pay is a red herring. Don't be a tool of the corporations and their lobbyists. The fact is, government benefits most Americans. Focus your emnity on the really fat cats, and the Wall Street types that produce no wealth for the US and make ridiculous money playing shell games with assets and waste brilliant talent on dreaming up new derivatives to sell. People should be charging the banks with torches and pitchforks instead of attacking the common federal workers. Be careful what you wish for, because you just might get it.
_______________________________

This is the most lucid post I've seen to date regarding the topic. Most Americans don't understand the positive affect government has on their lives. Do be mindful of what you wish for.

Posted by: ludditegirl | December 1, 2010 3:08 PM | Report abuse

Why should federal employees be exempt from pay freezes and layoffs that have plagued private-sector employees in this economy? Why are they entitled to an AUTOMATIC increase in pay each year, irrespective of their performance? It is downright ridiculous given that many private-sector employees have had no increases for many years, given the state of the economy. Their salaries are definitely comparable to what their counterparts make in non-fed. jobs. I have heard from enough federal employees who brag about this fact!

How about the fact that they get a day off for every single holiday on the calendar? How about the fact that they get reasonable health insurance? How about the fact that they are guaranteed retirement income, when the rest of us dont know where our pot of gold is coming from? Dont all these count as benefits? Gone are the days when federal jobs paid less compared to no-federal jobs....With all the belt-tightening that private-sector companies have been doing, that margin has shrunk if not vanished. Not to mention the fact that once you are into any federal job, irrespective of what you actually do, you are pretty much guaranteed to be able to flit between various federal job with a guaranteed salary and benefits!

When states and counties have tightened their belts and streamlined expenditure, why should the federal govt. be exempt from this? Trimming overstuffed bureaus and eliminating yearly raises and guaranteed retirement benefits would be a good start!!

Posted by: freespirit220 | December 1, 2010 3:14 PM | Report abuse

Why should federal employees be exempt from pay freezes and layoffs that have plagued private-sector employees in this economy?

Perhaps because when the private-sector employees were getting raises in the 10 to 15% range we were getting a measly 2% increase

Why are they entitled to an AUTOMATIC increase in pay each year, irrespective of their performance?

Because the law says so...I don't agree with this either actually

Their salaries are definitely comparable to what their counterparts make in non-fed. jobs.

Really -- The contractors that work at my agency make about 20% more than the feds to do the same job.

How about the fact that they get a day off for every single holiday on the calendar? How about the fact that they get reasonable health insurance?

My roommates health insurance is cheaper and better than mine and she works for a non-profit.

How about the fact that they are guaranteed retirement income, when the rest of us dont know where our pot of gold is coming from?

Really -- I'm not guaranteed squat unless I save it myself as my retirement is dependent on social security...Don't know where mine is coming from either.

Not to mention the fact that once you are into any federal job, irrespective of what you actually do, you are pretty much guaranteed to be able to flit between various federal job with a guaranteed salary and benefits!

ROFLMAO -- Then how come I am having such a hard time moving to another agency when I only meet 1/2 the qualifications for the job I applied for.


You and your buddies that have been posting here have absolutely no idea what you are talking about. Did you know that there are approximately 3 contractor employees for every 1 federal employee? There are approx 12 million in the DC federal workforce alone and 2 million TOTAL federal employees...What does that tell you?

Posted by: hart2014 | December 1, 2010 3:21 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, let's get rid of all those brain-dead government employees and close down the weather service, EPA, FDA, CIA, DOT, FEMA, and all those other useless government agencies.

And the first people to whine about no services, privatization of roads, unsafe drugs, and unchecked pollution would be those same slobs now crying to get rid of those brain-dead government employees.

You are all dependent on the federal government, whether you care to admit it or not. You are part of an incredibly complex, interdependent, and highly interconnected society that you can't understand. I say take the whiners and put them on a desert island all by themselves, without taxes and without all those brain-dead government employees, and let them fend for themselves.

Posted by: risandy | December 1, 2010 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Once again the middle and lower class take the hit. Federal employees have their wages frozen joining the millions of private sector workers who have had their wages frozen, taken pay cuts, or lost their jobs. Meanwhile the greedy SOBs on Wall Street are once again receiving bonuses that represent a lifetime of earnings for most Americans. The rich get richer and the rest of us get the shaft. Now the same bozos whose economic policies put this country on the brink of financial collapse are back for an encore, opposing extending unemployment benefits while ensuring that millionaires and billionaires don't pay any more taxes than they paid during the boom years of the Clinton Administration. God save America from these clowns.

Posted by: MrSagacious | December 1, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

HEY CAPITALIST-1, What gives you the right to call all federal workers "fat, lazy slobs"? Should we call all christians "fat, lazy slobs'? How about canadiens? Or maybe PREGNANT WOMEN? How about the DISABLED in wheelchairs? Pick a group! Are you basing your info on concrete evidence? We take as much pride in our jobs as you do yours.(Ass--uming that you do). GO FLY A KITE.You've obviously never worked for the government, so keep your opinions to yourself!

Posted by: fedup100 | December 1, 2010 3:44 PM | Report abuse

How did the WP come up with an average salary for Feds of $120K+ thats more than a GS13?

Now I am a Fed and my DOD agency already has a 10% cut FTEs in effect just as we are moving to Fort Meade from our offices in Arlington, VA. We do not get to back fill the slots for the folks not going with us from DC area and outside the area. So out of our approx 45FTe equivalents we can not fill 7 slots. Great and are back continues to grow, are daily commute triples to Ft Meade from Arlington and because we aren't the chosen the director says we cant telecommute because he doesnt trust anyone but chosen.

So my pay is froze and my commuting costs triple but the best part is our case load continues to grow.

And the best part is a several times a year we face real threats from disgruntled contractors.

Feds have always gotten the short end since during good times we cant give those big raises what would the tax payer say. Now we cant give you 1.4% what would the taxpayer say. Our taxes, groceries and healthcare all continue to go up in price. The idiot Fed is driving down the value of the US dollar and the price of gas goes up. Commute jumps from 20 miles each way to 60. Thanks Ben and little Timmy Geitner both of you also have your investment income.

Come one come all apply for these great govt jobs. Oops your mortgage is in foreclosure and you havent paid your credit cards in years. So fing sorry no job or clearance for you.

D*mn we live in a great country.

Posted by: lotusxidriver | December 1, 2010 3:53 PM | Report abuse

Walk into any government office after 3pm or before 10am. Count the empty desks. We don't need those people.

Posted by: getjiggly1 | December 1, 2010 3:56 PM | Report abuse

The President makes 400,000 a year, after leaving office, shouldnt that go back to 220k as he like other presidents will rake in millions.

I am fed who doesnt mind not receiving an anual COLA. I think we should consider changing the leave categories, we got people raking in 10 hours and annual leave every two weeks, they can cut to 6 and raise the cap to 340.

Posted by: Sincear2021 | December 1, 2010 3:56 PM | Report abuse

The President makes 400,000 a year, after leaving office, shouldnt that go back to 220k as he like other presidents will rake in millions.

I am fed who doesnt mind not receiving an anual COLA. I think we should consider changing the leave categories, we got people raking in 10 hours and annual leave every two weeks, they can cut to 6 and raise the cap to 340.

Posted by: Sincear2021 | December 1, 2010 3:57 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: crknight | December 1, 2010 1:49 PM | Report

I agree!

Posted by: Sincear2021 | December 1, 2010 3:59 PM | Report abuse

There are 12 million contractors working for the Federal government and only 2 million Federal employees. Do the math. The Republicans want their buddies to get rich. Foolish money foolishly spent.

All of you for the cuts in the Federal workforce sound like a buch of three year-olds at the sandbox. Wah, wah, wah, if I can't have a raise they can't either, wah, wah, wah. Get off your fat but and get another job. 90,000 jobs were created last quarter, go get one and stop trying to make others miserable.

You all sound like a bunch of three year

Posted by: varagtop | December 1, 2010 3:59 PM | Report abuse

There are 12 million contractors working for the Federal government and only 2 million Federal employees. Most contractors make as much, if not more, than what the employee does. It costs the Government a hell of a lot more to pay the contractor per employee than to just hire an employee. Do the math.

Posted by: varagtop | December 1, 2010 4:12 PM | Report abuse

Numbnuts no Fed gets 10hrs of annual leave a pay period.

4 hrs from when you start until year 3
6hrs from year 3 to year 15
8hrs from year 15 until the day you retire

Posted by: lotusxidriver | December 1, 2010 4:17 PM | Report abuse

First of all let me say: getgiddy1, YOU ARE A MORON! I have been a Federal Worker in the DOD for going on 31 years and what you so ignorantly speak about regarding Federal workers doesn't exist in the my experience. In fact you can go to most private corporations and that's where you find much of the garbage and behavior you try to foist on the Federal Workers. We are constantly being scrutinized by our own government, contractors, and the public sector; and then there are idiots like you. You obviously have spent too much time listening to the likes of Rush Limbaugh, Laura Ingram or other government haters on the radio; or most likely must have been fired by the Federal Government for being do nothing.....however, one thing is clear - you are completely clueless on the aspects of the sacrifices Federal Workers have and continue to make for this country on a daily basis to make your life somewhat less miserable (if that's possible in your case). You need to get a clue and a life, because you absolutely do not know what you are talking about!.

Posted by: MDT1 | December 1, 2010 4:18 PM | Report abuse

"Exactly which 10-20% are we cutting? 10-20% fewer border agents? customs officials? meat inspectors? air traffic controllers? SEC investigators? FBI agents?"
*****************************************
Puh-leaze. I'm a federal employee and it's obvious at least 2 of every 10 feds should be fired immediately for laziness and malfeasance and not replaced.

Posted by: leewifflestin | December 1, 2010 4:18 PM | Report abuse

Getjiggly

Lots of Feds work 600am to 230pm. Now punk you have been running your inbred Rush limbaugh loving mouth quite a bit punk.

Now I realize its hard for someone like you to rise above your upbringing by your two dads but have you ever held a job?

Yeah the govt should have paid for one of your dad's sex change operation but hey then they would have to it for everyone including Chastity Bono.

Are the air traffic controllers, SAs, security specialists, intel analysts, auditors etc all lazy? See problem with your logic is if they were you wouldnt be running your mouth because you would be living in USSR and this country would be a part of it.

Have you ever flown on a commercial airliner you know those large planes that fly over your trailer? Well see its air traffic controllers that keep the planes from hitting each other and FAA employees that inspect the planes.

No little boy I work 40+hrs a week and OT to get the job done.
I then work a second job and so does my wife who is also a Fed so we can afford to make our mortgage payments here in Fairfax County on $400k house so our kids have a decent school to go to.

Now after you lose at pocket pool again I want you to think do you really want air traffic controllers, auditors, inspectors, intel analyst, security specialists, SAs etc earning the average wage?

Maybe if you had gone to college you to could be a Fed. Enjoy the late shift at Wally World. An remember to erase everything so your momma/.daddy doesnt find out you have been looking for those up the skirt shots of Sarah Palin.

Posted by: lotusxidriver | December 1, 2010 4:34 PM | Report abuse

Okay guys...We all deserve raises. But how do we (the taxpayers) pay for your raises? (can't add it to the deficit though) Any ideas???

Posted by: PracticalIndependent | December 1, 2010 4:36 PM | Report abuse

Well if you are a federal employee and haven't joined the union yet, now would be a really good time to sign up. Pay the dues that will fund a strong union protest. Help them lobby Congress to protect Federal pay and federal benefits. They have experience in fighting these attacks on Federal workers, but they can't do it without financial support. Everyone, even managers should join the unions now!

Posted by: AnnsThought | December 1, 2010 4:37 PM | Report abuse

The commission warned that "a voucher or subsidy system holds significant promise of controlling costs, but also carries serious potential risks. To assess the balance of benefits and risks, we recommend a rigorous external review process to study the outcomes of the FEHB premium support program to determine its effects on costs, health care utilization, and health outcomes."

Whoa fellows! Federal employees and retirees are not federal prisoners on whom you can experiment to see if serious personal risks materialize. Remember we will also sacrifice in many other ways under your deficit reduction plan. What's next...experimental drugs?

Posted by: Viewpoint2 | December 1, 2010 4:50 PM | Report abuse

Federal unions have no clout or say. They are worthless. For the last year Feds are being bad mouthed and the unions have done nothing. When they do go on TV they are very ineffective in defending Feds. These unions and their scum leadership will never get a dime for me. These fools went all in with Comrades Barry, Nancy, Harry, and our moronic VP and look where it got us. All us Feds are bending over grabbing our ankles and getting f'd w/o the aid of lubrication. And if there was any lube it would be low fing bid!

Posted by: lotusxidriver | December 1, 2010 4:50 PM | Report abuse

Jeez, this fed-bashing is becoming really tiring. Like several others who posted here, I returned a few months ago from a 14-month tour in Iraq, lucky not to have been killed during a sniper attack on March 17, or numerous other kinetic incidents that weren't quite as close a call as that one. In a 16-year career with the State Department so far, I have done three unaccompanied tours of various durations, and my wife has basically sacrificed any career aspirations to accomodate this unusual lifestyle.

And for my efforts, I'm now apparently a lazy, incompetent slob who deserves punitive action and pay docking??

Gee, thanks.

Like many federal employees, I made a conscious decision to put my education, degrees and specialized skills to use for my country and community despite the fact that I would earn more--much more--in the private sector. I am proud of my service and don't expect to become wealthy as a federal officer, but if it really comes to this-- multi-year freezes on COLAs and step increases, etc.-- then I think that's it for me. I can't justify continued public service when it threatens my family's financial security and my kids' college savings to such an extent, and when the opportunities in the private sector are just so much more lucrative.

I've had one firm offer and several tentative offers over the past few years that would all have paid over 50% of what I now earn in base and with so many perks and benefits-- just offered out of the blue, nothing I sought. All from federal contractors and defense firms, of course.

If the more draconian measures mentioned here are actually implemented, I think that's it for me. Tough call because I love serving my country, but not at the cost of absolutely no advancement and nothing but derision from the fools posting here who have quite literally no idea what they are talking about. I'll take the skills I came in with and the skills i've developed, and jump over to the "dark side" where at least I can make the same living as many peers who have been urging me to do so for the past 16 years.

Posted by: gadstian | December 1, 2010 4:52 PM | Report abuse

The same people who complain that federal workers make too much are the exact same people who complain about the lack of government services. As a fed employee, I earn every damn dime I get and deserve more. I really want to know who said federal employees make to much. Which ones? Not me or the people I know. I am on a two man team, where there should be at least five...but those pesky budget cuts didn't allow my agency to hire the necessary staff that would make YOUR experience more pleasant and efficient. But I still do my job and so do the people I work with.

I work hard daily only to be considered slow by the masses who dont care to understand that I do the work of five people on most days all by myself. So yes I may get behind at times but I get to it because I actually take PRIDE IN SERVING THE ungrateful AMERICAN PUBLIC.

A two year freeze in my COLA did not bother me. What offended my is that the people who decide that I make to much, the US Congress (another result of the ungrateful public), earns triple my salary and are not subjecting themselves to any belt tightening. If you want to believe that we are all fat and lazy go ahead but I am willing to bet you voted a fat lazy slob into office and they are not getting a pay cut, as we speak they are voting on their pay raises. Yes for the uninformed/ignorant Congress votes own their own salary...ironic isn't it?

So when I go into work tomorrow at 7:30am (getgiggy you obviously never came into my office) and open my email to receive more news about my pay cut, less transportation allowances, fewer health benefits, new assignments before I can finish what already have, decreased funding for major projects and the list goes on. I'm going to say a prayer and give thanks for my job, and hope that I still have it by the time I leave at 5.

Posted by: ctbklyn1 | December 1, 2010 4:54 PM | Report abuse

Maybe president obama should give up the White House Chef and Mrs. Obama can cook. Give up his $400,000 salary after he leaves office. Pay the same amount towards his health insurance and retirement benefits he wants us feds to pay (same for congress, senate, etc). Give up his secret service entitlements after he leaves office. Eliminate the senior executive scale. No more take home government vehicles. Use your own to work, pick up your government vehicle and then go do your government business. Give up his driver, etc. If he is so passionate about saving perhaps he should begin to review the list of benefits he receives and advise us what cuts he is making reference his job because he works for us too.

Posted by: im777forever | December 1, 2010 4:57 PM | Report abuse

Walk into any government office after 3pm or before 10am. Count the empty desks. We don't need those people.

Posted by: getjiggly1


This is one of the dumber things I've read here, and that is saying something.

Walk into any government office after 3pm and you'll count the empty desks of all those people who came to work at 6am, in order to beat the horrendous traffic.

Walk into any government office before 10am and you'll count the empty desks of all those people who will be working till 7pm to go home, in order to beat the horrendous traffic.

Added to that you'll be counting the desks of all those people not replaced when the previous owner left to retire, or to take another position (usually in the private sector).

Jeeze!

Posted by: pdqlmnop | December 1, 2010 4:57 PM | Report abuse

The anti-government rhetoric is mind blowing, especially in light of the growing power of Wall Street monopolists and the rapid accumulation of wealth in so few hands since the "Reagan Revolution".

Look at the incidendiary language from the post below. Does this person really believe that her mailman is "raping her" because he gets a pension and health care for delivering her mail? Do FBI agents "rape" the public by expecting competitive wages? Should veterans just accept that they will die early because the VA won't pay doctors and nurses a living wage? Since 40% of Federal workers work for the Defense Dept, should our soldiers just go to war without the adequate strategic, material and administrative support?

Americans seem to think that all government workers are bureaucrats sitting in offices collecting huge paychecks for doing nothing. That's why 58,000 teachers were laid off at the beginning of the school year, forcing 3,000,000 school children into larger classrooms with less persona attention. Meanwhile, the Cat Food Commission thinks that the wealthy deserve another 30% tax cut so that someone making $1,000,000 a year should get an extra $10,000 a month in his paycheck.
__________________________________

Stealing from federal employees? Really? The very federal employees who are paid by raping the American people? What other rapists are you doing to defend, johnny boy?

Posted by: getjiggly1

Posted by: AxelDC | December 1, 2010 4:59 PM | Report abuse

The vile filth that is the American Bureaucrat is abundant here today. They all think they're FBI agents and food inspectors when most of them are do nothing fax machine operators. Take your high school diploma and see what kind of a job you qualify for on the outside.

Posted by: getjiggly1 | December 1, 2010 5:04 PM | Report abuse

The bureaucrat disease of illiteracy is amazing as well. Not shocking, but always amazing.

Maybe we don't need new interviews for bureaucrats, just literacy tests.

Posted by: getjiggly1 | December 1, 2010 5:08 PM | Report abuse

Waaah, I wanted a Federal job and they never hired me, waaaah, if they wouldn't hire me they should all be fired, waaah, I am taking my toys and going home. GROW UP and see the lies for what they are. The fat, rich, Republicans want to balance their budget mess on the backs of the middle class. Yes, Government employees are firmly in the middle class.

Posted by: varagtop | December 1, 2010 5:14 PM | Report abuse

getjigglyi.

Moron the executive branch agencies contracted out all the fax operator jobs to SAIC, BAH and Mantech and instead of paying them GS4 wages they now make a $150k, But really as Fed for 28 years we have never had fax operators.

Most of Federal workforce has 4 year college degrees little buddy. Sorry you dropped when you couldnt pass basket weaving with all the football players at the Ohio State University.

You see back in late 70's the Republicans thought it would be cheaper to contract out all the admin functions. They sold this bill of goods to the American public. All my IT and admin support has been outsourced since about 1989.

Could your hero Rush be a Fed? What real skills does he have besides purchasing prescription drugs illegally? Rush makes over a million a year and he has no real skills. Sarah Palin can hunt and fish and look damn good in skirt but what skills does she have. Darn I forgot quitting! Nancy Pelosi looks good in her $2k pantsuits but has no skills that would help her get a job as a Fed. Upward mobility programs wouldnt help her.

BTW getjiggly did your unemployment benefits run out. Damn I hope so.

Posted by: lotusxidriver | December 1, 2010 5:16 PM | Report abuse

I don't need unemployment as long as I have your mom.

Posted by: getjiggly1 | December 1, 2010 5:24 PM | Report abuse

Good Post, Jeff! Beltway Bandits need to be addressed as well as Federal Workers.

Posted by: paulst | December 1, 2010 5:28 PM | Report abuse

getjiggly1, would you mind telling us what you do for a living, how much you earn, and what your qualifications are? I doesn't appear that you have a day job (or if you are, you should stop trolling and get back to work).

Have you worked for the federal government? Do you have first hand knowledge of any departments (please tell us which ones)?

Posted by: djjunk | December 1, 2010 5:31 PM | Report abuse

getjiggly1 = laziest, most clueless troll ever

Posted by: spunkydawg1 | December 1, 2010 5:33 PM | Report abuse

Thank you, ignorant cur.

Posted by: getjiggly1 | December 1, 2010 5:35 PM | Report abuse

Federal employees are underworked and overpaid. Their salaries should be cut, their numbers should be cut, and if they don't like it, they can cut their wrists and solve overpopulation while they're at it.

Posted by: getjiggly1 | December 1, 2010 5:38 PM | Report abuse

Your welcome, troll. Enjoy the attention, in lieu of an actual life.

Oh, and we're still waiting for you to provide the sources for all your "facts".

Or are you just pulling them out of your *ss? Could you maybe remove your head while you're in there?

Posted by: spunkydawg1 | December 1, 2010 5:47 PM | Report abuse

@desertdiva1: You wrote, "Remember that many in private sector jobs have seen no pay raises for the last three years and many have taken pay cuts. So don't expect sympathy from others who have already gone through the same reductions in pay."

Why shouldn't workers who are having their pay frozen or cut expect sympathy? When other workers were fired or had their pay cut, I had sympathy for them. The way that you and other write it is that the federal employees fired those workers or cut their pay. I see this as all the workers in the same boat, not as enemies pitted against one another.

Full disclsoure: I'm a federal employee, dedicated to my work and my country, who will gladly (and patriotically) do my part to help our country. I've put my life on the line for my country, so of course I am willing to sacrifice my job or money for it if needed.

I respect President Obama for asking us to make even this small sacrifice for our country that is engaged in two wars and facing an economic crisis. I also remember that President Bush asked for _no_ sacrifice, borrowed all the money for the wars, pushed through very expensive tax cuts, and told us all to go shopping. Will the anti-fed posters and recently converted her commend Obama and condemn Bush for this glaring difference in fiscal responsibility?

To my fellow feds: let the criticism roll off. We do this work becuase it is good, and right, and not for glamour, fame, great wealth, or praise. These trolls are an unfortunately vocal minority.

Posted by: djjunk | December 1, 2010 5:52 PM | Report abuse

"Federal employees are underworked and overpaid. Their salaries should be cut, their numbers should be cut, and if they don't like it, they can cut their wrists and solve overpopulation while they're at it."

getjiggly1, you make me sick. First off, my brother commit suicide 5 years ago so I find this to be the most offensive comment I have seen to date.

As for federal employees being "underworked and overpaid"...my husband is one and he works a minimum of 50 hours a week, often comes home sporting bruises, cuts, gashes and rashes from working in the field. He works outdoors in 100+ temps as well as below freezing temps. He's never given a choice as to what his assignment will be that day. He pays more than I ever did for his health insurance premiums. He's encouraged often to increase his contribution to his 401 account because not even his bosses can guarantee his retirement. He has to travel over 45 minutes and 60 miles one-way to work every day just so we can live in a safe neighborhood. The list goes on and on.

Pull your head out of your sphincter, get a grip on reality and for the love of God please get fixed so you can never have kids to pass this ignorance, arrogance and insanity onto!

Posted by: luv_my_stang_jezebel | December 1, 2010 6:12 PM | Report abuse

Hey "lotusxidriver"...You're Right On Target! Your comments are funny as hell!

Diddy (GS-12 / DHHS)

Posted by: Love_The_Lotus_Guy | December 1, 2010 6:12 PM | Report abuse

Oh and did I mention he does all this so that you can continue living safely in your ignorance?

Posted by: luv_my_stang_jezebel | December 1, 2010 6:15 PM | Report abuse

Idiots like: getjiggly1, really don't even merit a response. It's obvious,getjiggly1,
has some hidden agenda, like maybe he or she is a bitter, bitter person who has no life! It, he or she isn't worth wasting time or breath on his pure ignorance, which knows no bounds. What a dope!

Posted by: MDT1 | December 1, 2010 6:20 PM | Report abuse

Come on getjiggly1 is the only Fed ever to be fired. Come one rush and Sean tells Feds are never fired or cant be fired so getjiggly is that one Fed who got caught down loading porn ie pics of the SOS naked and playing pocket pool.

Its all on video tape NCIS SAs from the LA office nailed him. He still had the evidence on his palms.

Posted by: lotusxidriver | December 1, 2010 6:38 PM | Report abuse

Forgot to mention getjiggly also used to bring his date to the office when he was a Fed. Ms Biguns rode with him everyday to the office in the HOV 2 on I66. Problem was Ms Biguns was a blow up doll with a vibrating and getjiggly used to spend his days debating Rush with her and not inspecting. His coworkers used to deflate his friend and steal her batteries.

Getjiggly was further disgraced when he called his hero Rush and tried to get funding for a monument on the mall for himself. Rush laughed at the only Fed ever to get fired.

Posted by: lotusxidriver | December 1, 2010 6:52 PM | Report abuse

I just heard the bad news getjiggly sorry 7-11 fired you. Man you should have had the prez's favorite Slurpee flavor all ready for the Slurpee Summit. Didnt you read the memo from HQ. Fired from over 300 jobs this year and still counting. Keep trying my friend keep trying.

Posted by: lotusxidriver | December 1, 2010 6:56 PM | Report abuse

The President doesn't have jurisdiction over the private sector. But he and congress can control federal employees that's why he's going after the lower wage earning federal employee; probably not fair, but I understand what he's doing. When campaigning he said he would go after the fat contractors, don't know why the change of heart.

Posted by: madstamina | December 1, 2010 7:22 PM | Report abuse

People are just so.....so.....human. In a boom economy folks mock and laugh at government employees as saps who settled for mundane jobs at not a great wage.

Other side of this coin, the former private sector fat cats, now unemployed, shriek about the fat, lazy government worker slobs who are leading the good life.

Posted by: mosthind | December 1, 2010 7:42 PM | Report abuse

Misery really must love company; How else can you explain people wanting others to join them in their misery instead of using federal employees as an example of how they should be treated..in short, i want you to be as bad off as me instead of saying we need to be treated better like federal employees..What a bunch of idiots..maybe thats why they have no job..bad choices !!! i know a guy that quit his federal job to import stuff from Mexico..after 10 years he went broke and re joined federal service and then hated all those that were retiring and he could not...He did have great time going to Mexico while his former federal co workers had to take crap for 10 years from his former boss..now he is amd cause he has to work 10 more years ..BAD CHOICES !!!!

Posted by: RPLCO | December 1, 2010 7:46 PM | Report abuse

@getjiggly1

Its too bad that ignorant jackasses like yourself are allowed to make remarks on these pages because someone is now listening to your bull. The three largest burdens on the federal debt are social security, medicaire, and a milatary whose budget no one can seem to calculate. But thank god for free speech b/c I love hearing your idiotic remarks.

Posted by: no_recess | December 1, 2010 8:04 PM | Report abuse

Cuts through attrition aren't good enough. There are too many lazy slobs marking the days toward retirement but who aren't anywhere close to it.

Cut total positions by 20% and make everyone interview for their jobs again.

Posted by: getjiggly1 | December 1, 2010 11:22 AM
**********

Seriously? What sort of inteligent person makes ignorant remarks like that? Oh, i know a lazy slob.

Posted by: feartheiguana | December 1, 2010 8:09 PM | Report abuse

oh, no... what will obama do....

he will lose support from the union.

who wants to bet no cuts happen... no freeze happens?

I would take any legit bet in a second.

Posted by: docwhocuts | December 1, 2010 8:14 PM | Report abuse

I work in the budget office of my agency and I watch millions go out of the door to contractors. What happened to the plan to reduce the number of contractors in the federal workforce? I guess that would take too long, heaven forbid we fire a contractor.

But why fire a contractor when you can reduce the number of feds or turn over all functions in the government, including those that are 'inherent', and continue to make them ineffective aka lazy!

I wonder, do I qualify for national health care if my federal salary is cut and I can't afford the voucher that is being proposed as part of FEHB??

Posted by: mzand2000 | December 1, 2010 8:17 PM | Report abuse

For you folks calling for 20% staff cuts, where did you get that number? Why 20% why not 50, why not 15? I'm interested because I keep seeing that trotted out. Is it a Fox talking point, did you make it up or is it from some study?

Posted by: shadow27 | December 1, 2010 8:19 PM | Report abuse

The issue as I see it is the government pay raise is NOT uniform across the board. For example, why is it that Congress, and all of their lackeys, has no pay freeze? And trust me, they are not being paid 10 cents on the dollar. Since they are the ones screaming this should be done, seems to me that what's good for the goose is good for the gander.

Posted by: Aramis1 | December 1, 2010 8:28 PM | Report abuse

Congress voted themselves a pay freeze for 2010 and for 2011.

Posted by: shadow27 | December 1, 2010 8:32 PM | Report abuse


come http://0845.com/4pC

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Posted by: itkonlyyou407 | December 1, 2010 8:35 PM | Report abuse

Hey, at least the paid-less-than-civilian-counterpart, purely middle-class Federal workers aren't the FIRST to have their pay frozen. The first were the bankers...remember?? Their bonuses were frozen at the previous rates. Equal protection under the law?

I hope the 2,000,000 who will receive no more unemployment checks write long "Thank You" notes to all the new members of Congress. I wonder how many of them voted for "Tea Party" candidates. The "Party" has begun!

Posted by: Sadler | December 1, 2010 8:37 PM | Report abuse

I can't believe all of the anger here. I chose a federal career because it is a tradition in my family and I was raised to value govt. service. My time as a fed has been good to me but not easy. I moved halfway across the country a few years ago to take a federal job because I wanted to help that part of the country. It was a term position and when it came time for it to end, I moved halfway across the country AGAIN to take another term position, in a much more expensive area (DC). I've given up the chance to settle in one place to work for the federal govt. I'm coming close to four years of fed service and contrary to popular belief, I do not have a job for life. When this one ends, I will have to find another one. I'm ok with that but I've had to work hard to learn two different agencies and prove my worth. I've worked well into the evening plenty of times without getting overtime or comp time and I've given up my weekends on occasion. I don't mind the pay freeze but I don't think benefits should be cut beyond this. When I look around my office, I see people working just as many hours as I do without complaint. We do it because we care about our jobs and because we recognize our accountability to the American people. Please get to know a fed before you criticize us. We don't go around bashing private sector employees. Give us the same respect.

Posted by: js2225 | December 1, 2010 8:40 PM | Report abuse

The GOPers created this problem. I say the GOPers should fix it by themselves. Get all that money back from the rich old white dudes and the lobbyists and their BIG BUSINESS buddies.

That is the ideal thing to do. Maybe we just sell naming rights to things - The IBM Grand Canyon; The China Gas and Glass Washington Monument; The Toyota Yellowstone Park...

The jerkoffs on the right were told for decades some day the bill would come due from all those tax cuts for the rich and all those petty wars on science, education, infrastructure and small despotic oil-producing countries. It would been a lot cheaper if we had invaded Venezuela.

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Posted by: itkonlyyou407 | December 1, 2010 9:07 PM | Report abuse

Someone sure has it in for the federal employee. From the left to the right they seemed doomed to have them pay for every screwup the administration has made. Is there no other target in sight? Freeze their pay raises, change the high three retirement formula, change the FEHB, change COLA's to 62. Change everything they have worked for and screw them over royally. Thank you Washington and Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you also!
I'm glad I worked 35 years to receive this.

Posted by: retiree4 | December 1, 2010 9:33 PM | Report abuse

ARE YOU KIDDING ME??!! These people are on drugs! No. Really. There is SO much waste in the Federal Government. Contractors are the top one. 'Double dippers' (left under the old retirement system and now back under FERS) are number 2 and that's the Executive Branch. Let's look at the Legislative Branch: they don't work full time (40 hrs a week-26 weeks a year), they get kickbacks (yes- KICKBACKS) and they want to take money out of MY pocket? I hope they do furlough the Federal civil service. I'm in law enforcement and I can only imagine the hell that would break loose if that happened. During the last furlough (1996) MOST Federal Law Enforcement came to work anyway-unpaid. I'd think twice before I bet on seeing that happen this time. Of course, these folks won't furlough the 'law enforcement' that protects them. So, furlough the Federal workforce, cut taxes on the rich and continue to give tax credits to companies who ship American jobs overseas; that'll show the Democrats! Un-freakin-believable.

Posted by: USAdemocrat | December 1, 2010 9:38 PM | Report abuse

So we'll balance the budget on the federal employees and their benefits, social security recipients, medicare recipients and repeal the healthcare bill which will help reduce the deficit and cover more people, but letting the taxes on the top 2% go back to levels during the Clinton years is off the table?

I'm seriously considering a move to Canada, where the electorate elects officials who serve all the people and not those with the most money. The USA is going down the tubes because politicians have successfully argued that a $2T war against a country that did not attack us and gave strength to Iran is more important than the health of the American people, more important than ensuring that the elderly live in dignity with good health care, and more important than building America as the government has done in the past. It seems that republicans are seriously trying to ruin this nation and make it a third world country, but what is really difficult to understand is why Americans are voting for them to do it. Its too bad Americans have given up thinking for themselves.

Posted by: Fate1 | December 1, 2010 9:45 PM | Report abuse

"Now we are talking. It's a start. I want the size and scope of the federal govt to get smaller. We don't need the number of federal workers that we have today if we plan to reduce govt regulations and the size. This is good news but it's just a start. For jeffash99 yes contractors should be the first to go."
Posted by: Desertdiva1

Reduce regulations? Like those that regulate Wall Street? Regulate food safety? Regulate energy? Have you heard of Enron fool? Enron was a product of deregulation as was the republican great recession.

And after you cut the government have you thought where you will hear what the weather will be tomorrow (hint, your local TV weatherman has no clue without the federal weather service). You may be able to live with that but not the farmers or the military. Do you want a weaker FBI? Do you want our federal highway system to fall into more disrepair?

All we hear from these nutty conservatives is cut regulation, cut government, fire feds, lower taxes, yet they never, not ever, say what federal service they would want to see cut or weakened. And the reason is they do not have a clue, not one clue. They have been fed this anti-government fodder from the right and just think "cutting government" will just make everything better.

Numb-skull is not too harsh a term for these guys. If you got a plan, with specifics, lets hear it. And if you are going to say first we should borrow another $700B to give to the top 2%, well, you make no fiscal sense, so just stop trying to do so.


Posted by: Fate1 | December 1, 2010 9:59 PM | Report abuse

My taxes area already going up significantly in 2012 because Congress has halved the amount of money I can put away in my flexible savings account for out of pocket health care costs. Every year I substantially exceed the $5,000 limit, and now it's going to be only $2,500. So -- a direct hit on my pocketbook of $2,500, health care/property taxes/utilities all going up, and now a three-year pay freeze? I don't know what these people are smoking, but this proposal will stop all of my discretionary spending completely. Great way to get us out of a recession/depression - not!

Posted by: AdventurerVA | December 1, 2010 10:05 PM | Report abuse

I am amazed by the stupidity and hypocrisy of most people posting comments. They should be completely ashamed of themselves. The GOP and people like Hannity, who claim to be conservatives, should also be ashamed. Hannity is spouting off, saying "share the sacrifice", which sounds very much like "share the wealth" or "redistribution of wealth", doesn't it? That's part of the Communist Manifesto, for God's sake!

The "federal employees" who will be hit by this pay cut, while postal workers and military personnel strangely won't, are people like the CIA officers who were killed in Khost, Afghanistan while serving our great nation, putting themselves in grave danger. It's true they did not do it for glory or money, but that they are actually being called "rapists" by idiot posters is beyond disgusting. Keep in mind that the very first AMERICAN PATRIOT to die in Afghanistan after 9/11 was a federal employee!

These people work every single day to protect all Americans from danger, and this is the thanks they get? Wow. I don't know how you people, including the sleazy politicians in DC sleep at night.

By the way, it IS a pay cut because for every year there is a freeze, the amount these people will live on after retirement will be significantly lower (forever). Good job Mr. President.

Posted by: mcdangerous | December 1, 2010 10:14 PM | Report abuse

"I don't know what these people are smoking, but this proposal will stop all of my discretionary spending completely. Great way to get us out of a recession/depression - not!"
Posted by: AdventurerVA

No no no don't ya see? Once the top 2% get their tax breaks extended its going to be peachy! I'm sure one of them will be willing to hire you, after all once they get their tax breaks extended they will go on a hiring spree! Its all so obvious! Whoopie!

I have come to the conclusion that republicans hate 98% of America and are only starting on the federal employee because they can. Next will be the rest of middle and lower class America as they attack the health care bill, cut regulations that protect us and maybe start another war to increase earnings for big oil or another wealthy sector. But God forbid anyone ask the top 2% to suffer. They cannot afford it according to conservatives. Somehow I think they are lying, maybe because its so obvious.

Posted by: Fate1 | December 1, 2010 10:16 PM | Report abuse

Fate1, whether you like it or not, over-taxing the people who are successful -- those people who are the engine of our economy -- makes no sense. In fact, punishing those people who are successful and rewarding those people who are unsuccessful only motivates the unsuccessful to remain unsuccessful. THIS is what will cost us untold billions every year.

By the way, extending the tax cuts to the rich will not be "expensive" for the government; it will not "cost" the government $700 billion to "pay that money to the rich". You see, it actually is not the government's money to begin with. It was earned by the rich. The government simply would not steal it from those people to give away in entitlement programs (redistribution of wealth) (socialism).

If the government simply cuts entitlements to those people who are actually motivated by the government's programs to remain unsuccessful, the government will bring in even more money (by far) than it would by increasing taxes on anyone. Just imagine the money the government would rake in if more people were just motivated to become successful, which would hugely increase the tax base. Make sense?

Posted by: mcdangerous | December 1, 2010 10:42 PM | Report abuse

I simply don't understand the gobbledy gook in this article about making the FEHBP a kind of voucher or subsidy plan.

I am retired and have the basic Medicare as well as the Foreign Svc. Benefit plan. I have the federal plan because my wife is not yet old enough for Medicare.

Our federal plan premiums are more than what Medicare would cost at the moment. So, how would the subsidy or voucher plan work?

BTW: Some union employees paid no premiums for their medical insurance. Do not think federal workers have all the perks.

Posted by: vrytix | December 1, 2010 11:24 PM | Report abuse

Best article! Best place to find and print coupons of major brands during holidays is "Printapons" search online and find.

Posted by: lindaallen | December 2, 2010 2:17 AM | Report abuse

Freeze my pay for any length of time and my job becomes finding a job.

Posted by: anarcho-liberal-tarian | December 2, 2010 8:25 AM | Report abuse

jeffash99 is so right...and it's yet another Reagan wrong that has cost us so much money and put us so far behind...contracting out services is nothing but kickbacks for political contributions or revolving door situations or nepotism, etc, etc.

It's not only bankrupting the federal government, but states, too.

Posted by: edismae | December 2, 2010 10:29 AM | Report abuse

Don't they estimate much more savings from firing tax deliquent feds that aren't in a repayment program? That would probably increase the percentage of ethical federal employees and not penalize people who work hard, are public servants and pay their taxes.

Posted by: chica1 | December 2, 2010 11:34 AM | Report abuse

Let's just be honest here. There are lazy useless employees in government and in the private sector, so there's no point in making the kinds of harsh comments toward feds that have been posted by some of the less knowledgeable individuals on this discussion board. I'm a Federal emloyee with a Defense Department organization and have worked for 30 years in government. I've worked hard for most of that time but I'll admit that I've been in jobs that allowed me to become complacent. Again, I wasn't happy about it because I like to feel as if I'm contributing, so I would go and find more challenging positions. I've also worked directly with contractors who don't have the experience or work ethic that I have, but who make as much if not more than I make. So although this pay freeze is unfortunate because it will hurt my pension, I can accept it because I do consider myself better off than many in this country. However, if feds do have to take this hit, then the richest 2 percent who have approximately 30% of the wealth in this country should take an even bigger hit by paying highter taxes. I'll shut up now.

Posted by: kevrio17 | December 2, 2010 11:38 AM | Report abuse

I find it amazing how some Americans view the federal employee. Please let me clear up a few things.

1. We get tired of hearing… we pay your salary…we pay taxes too.
2. We get angry when Congress wastes tax dollars.
3. We pay for health care premiums, into our retirement system and social security.
4. We lost money when the stock market tanked.
5. We have underwater mortgages.
6. We have spouses and family members who have lost their jobs and cannot find work.
7. We cannot strike against the US Government… We took an oath to support and defend the Constitution…did you take an oath on your job?
8. Everyone discusses our pay raises…does anyone comment on what you make?
9. When we travel on government business, we do not stay in five star hotels or eat at five star restaurants. Many of us use our own money to cover travel expenses.
10. We work thru lunch breaks, past quitting times and on weekends (without compensation) to make sure the job is done.
11. We contribute with open hearts and wallets to support the Combined Federal Campaign, which you benefit from.
12. Some of us have to work on holidays too.
13. We may complain about not getting a pay raise, we are only human.
14. We believe in what we do, can you say the same?

We understand what sacrifice is and we do comprehend difficult times…We have to work with you…the American public. Who wants every service right now, does not want to pay for it and wants someone else to pay. What service are you willing to give up?

The American public rarely appreciates the millions of government employees who work behind the scenes to make certain you get your social security checks, your Medicare payments, your tax refunds quickly, your flights arrive safely, the borders secure, and your mail arrives, shall I go on...


Posted by: browbeatenfed | December 2, 2010 12:47 PM | Report abuse

Incognito4 said it just right--health insurance, utilities, taxes will continue to increase, you can bet on that. And what does this freeze do to one's "highest three" to take into retirement? I have been working for the federal government for 23+ years, and have always been one to recommend a government career to people. I sure hope I didn't steer any youngster in the wrong direction........
---------------------------
Don't worry...the gov't job is still the best going as they continue to rape and pillage the American taxpayer. Until 25% of the work force is cut and at least a 25% reduction in pay to all Federal workers to bring them in line with the Private sector your whines about sucking on the gov't tit for decades will fall on deaf ears. In PA we have toll workers making change in the booth pushing a 100K/yr...this lunacy has to STOP!

Posted by: steelers01 | December 2, 2010 2:21 PM | Report abuse

Hey steelers01, I don't think those toll booth workers are Feds, I think they're State employees, so you should be screaming at the PA State government, because that is ridiculous!!! Go Ravens!!!

Posted by: kevrio17 | December 2, 2010 3:24 PM | Report abuse

steelers01. I checked out your story about toll booth employees making 100K, and found that there is actually a case of a NJ Turnpike toll booth attendant who made over 300K in salary and benifits. Again, this is the NJ State government's waste. I also found that the average toll booth worker makes somewhere in the neigborhood of 38-40K. As for Feds, I don't think there are any who can come close to what that NJ toll booth worker got.

Posted by: kevrio17 | December 2, 2010 4:06 PM | Report abuse

Everybody hold on a minute! What's the deal with establishing this commission in the first place? Is Congress and the Executive Branch not capable of doing the Peoples business? Why would you establish a commission to do Their work? They aren't elected officials. What's it costing the the American People to run this commission? Isn't this the type of wastfull spending that's hampering Our government in the first place? Let's stop the maddness and hold our Elected Officals responsible for doing Their own work! That's why we overpay them the Big Bucks!

Posted by: eyeonyou | December 2, 2010 4:35 PM | Report abuse

Everybody hold on a minute! What's the deal with establishing this commission in the first place? Is Congress and the Executive Branch not capable of doing the Peoples business? Why would you establish a commission to do Their work? They aren't elected officials. What's it costing the the American People to run this commission? Isn't this the type of wastfull spending that's hampering Our government in the first place? Let's stop the maddness and hold our Elected Officals responsible for doing Their own work! That's why we overpay them the Big Bucks!

Posted by: eyeonyou | December 2, 2010 4:36 PM | Report abuse

What a Crock. The same old political games with federal employees as the scapegoats this time.

Posted by: david_sequeira_fdic | December 2, 2010 5:43 PM | Report abuse

Being a fed employee for 30+ years, I've seen this hoopla again and again. The federal workforce will be replaced by higher paid contractors and in the end, no cost savings will be realized at all. On top of that, the federal workforce will have to be increase in 10 years to get things back working the way that they should. As a country, we fix and then unfix to refix again. It turns out to be a big waste of time and money. The work does not go away just because federal jobs are turned over to contractors who take years to get their footing to do the jobs properly. The biggest culprit of our budget deficit are the wars that we are fighting around the world. The very people who are being thrown to the wolves are financing them with their tax dollars. Federal employees will be replaced by highly-paid contractors, with salaries often times twice as much as feds and this is worldwide. In a war zone, these contractors ppay minimal taxes, if any at all. Federal workers do not enjoy this benefit. Wall Street and the big banks reward themselves with our tax dollars. Federak workers are called lazy slobs by ignorant people who just have to get on someone else's band-wagon. It is too bad that citizens of the greatest country will not educate themselves so that they are aware of the facts and not the falsehoods that others are spewing. I had hope that the Dems would be better for Amerca than the GOP. Obviously not! If they want to hold on to the White House, they shouldn't forget that the middle class, many federal workers, voted for them to do the right thing. The GOP is ridiculous and they actually think that they are doing the will of the people. I say that we are facing this mess today largely because of them. Ican't believe that Americans have forgotten so soon. It is stupid to think that allowing the Bush tax cuts to continue, even for those willing to pay higher tax, when in actuality, they pay virtually no taxes at all. Stating that more jobs will be created is nonsense. Tax cuts are still in effect now, so where are the jobs? Our leaders just need to do the right thing and not shoot from the hip! America needs to reason better and see things for what they are and how they truly unfold. Feceral workers are not the real problem!Sadly, we will find ourselves in this same mess in 10 years if we don't do the right thing now. Stop the wars and stop blaming federal workers. I hope that we will get our country back on track the way and get back to our prosperity once again -- for all Americans!

Posted by: Elincare | December 3, 2010 1:49 AM | Report abuse

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