Obama Lifts a Finger

…just so no one can say he didn’t lift a finger to reduce a bloated federal sector in a move widely reported as a “move to the center.”  A federal pay freeze yes, but consider this:

The freeze doesn’t extend to new hiring, bonuses or step increases. It doesn’t even match the three-year freeze recommended by the President’s deficit commission.

…and yet, it’s just to much to bear… it’s just not fair.

To whom? Why the poor, the huddled, the downtrodden federal workers of course.

American Federation of Public Employees President John Gage yesterday derided President Obama’s federal pay freeze as a “slap at working people.”

That might be a stretch. I know a lot of “working people” and they might take offense at being lumped in with government desk jockeys who enjoy unmatched job security, perks and disproportionate pay.

federal employees operate in a pay-and-benefit universe that no longer exists in the private economy. According to recent analyses by USA Today, total compensation for federal workers has risen 37% over 10 years—after inflation—compared to 8.8% for private workers. Federal workers earned average compensation of $123,000 in 2009, double the private average of $61,000.

[tape rewinding sound]

double the private average of $61,000. [emphasis and repetition mine]

Unions like to argue that federal jobs are unique, yet in occupations that exist both in government and the private economy—nurses, surveyors, janitors, cooks—the federal government pays 20% more than private firms.

Liberals are right! There are two worlds in America.

an estimated 2.1 million nonmilitary full-time [federal] workers (excluding 600,000 postal workers)

…who live in a fairy-tale world of fat pay and unmatched job security. If it weren’t for the fact that even the Pentagon has windows, they would have no idea what “working people” even look like.

Market forces have forced a painful but necessary redeployment of human capital in virtually every sector save one: the United States federal government. Obama’s less-than-token effort to realign the federal payroll with reality isn’t significant enough to be remembered let alone effect the fiscal reductions necessary to reduce our deficit.

Mr. President, you can put your finger back down and go back to the pressing work of destroying our nation’s financial future.

8 thoughts on “Obama Lifts a Finger

  1. “The freeze doesn’t extend to new hiring, bonuses or step increases.”

    I’m going to bet that there will be a lot of step increases, and then a couple years down the road there will be a pay adjustment to make up for any previous pay freeze.

  2. Obama lifted a finger alright. The middle one on his right hand. This is a lousy couple of billion in a budget exceeding $3 trillion. Roosh may correct me, but I think the technical term for this in financial circles is “doodely-squat”.

  3. It’s a minor step, but hey, it’s a step. The more fun here is listening to Democrats, the media, and other leftists drop bricks over this. They aren’t happy, to say the least.

    MPR’s “Question of the day” is what their listeners think of this, and if it’s “fair.” Considering most of the working public has dealt with a freeze or pay cut over the past two years, it’s possible that even MPR will have a fairly lopsided view on this.

  4. Why not freeze their wages & benefits permanently until a commission made of private & public employers can revamp the system? Wages of government workers at all levels should not exceed wages in the private sector. The value of a fixed-benefit pension plan is around a million bucks. That’s what you would have to have in a 401k when you retire, to make $40k/year retirement income (at 4%).
    The average amount of money in a private-sector 401k (for those lucky enough to have one) is about $35,000.
    Government employee wages, like earmarks, are a variation of the “principal agent” problem. Simply stated the principal agent problem is what occurs when the person or persons who are supposed to look after your interests have interests that vary from your own. Businesses have dealt with this problem for years, without ever finding a silver-bullet-solution to the problem. People are very good at maximizing their return while minimizing their risk, especially smart, educated people who know business and legalities better than their employers.
    Earmarks benefit incumbent politicians much, much more than the people they represent. Earmarks help them get re-elected. It may be a small amount of money when compared to the federal budget but it is corrupting. You can be certain that incumbent senators will leverage that money to max to keep themselves in office and weaken their political opponents.
    Having government workers who do not share the economic fate of the taxpayers who pay their salaries creates a similar problem. If they have to cripple the economic future of private sector employees and businesses to keep the gravy train going, they will not hesitate to do it.

  5. “The freeze doesn’t extend to new hiring……..”

    Any guesses on what the count of new hires will be for regulators of ObamaCare? What will their mean wage be? How about the extent of new hires for any Cap & Trade legislation? Not to speak of new hires for DHS, DOE, HHS, FDA, HUD, FAA, BATFE, or unionized TSA, etc. (on, and on, and on, and on…….). Mind-boggling!

  6. It’s quite reasonable to suppose that the federales need to employ (e.g.) LEOs, diplomats and nuclear physicists.

    But what the hell need is there for “…nurses, surveyors, janitors and cooks” to be government employees. Prime fodder for contracting-out.

  7. Pingback: Shot in the Dark » Blog Archive » Paul Krugman Picks Up Where The Republicans Left Off

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