Obama's Freeze on federal employee salaries for two years...

  • rioriz

    Posts: 1056

    Nov 30, 2010 6:28 AM GMT
    http://firstread.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2010/11/29/5544045-obama-announces-pay-freeze-for-federal-workers-

    Obama announces pay freeze for federal workers

    Carrie Dann writes: President Barack Obama announced a proposal Monday to freeze pay for federal workers over the next two years, one of several "very tough decisions" coming from the administration as it attempts to rein in government spending and address the looming federal deficit.

    "In these challenging times. we want the best and brightest to join and make a difference, but these are also times where all of us are called on to make sacrifices," Obama said in a statement at the White House. "And I'm asking civil servants to do what they have always done. Play their part."

    The freeze, which requires congressional approval, applies to civilian federal employees -- including non-military personel serving at the Department of Defense. The White House says the move will save $2 billion during the rest of the current fiscal year and $28 billion over the next five years.

    Obama noted the difficulty of the decision in his remarks Monday, saying "this is not just a line-item on a federal ledger. These are people's lives."
    But solving the problem of the mounting deficit will require many Americans to tighten their belts, he added. "The hard truth is that getting this deficit under control is going to require some broad sacrifice, and that sacrifice must be shared by the employees of the federal government."
    There are just under 2.7 million civilian employees of the executive branch, per the Washington Post. That's about 8.4 federal workers per 1,000 American citizens.


    A Washington Post poll in October found that 52 percent of Americans believe federal workers are overpaid. About half of respondents said they believe federal employees work "less hard" than their peers in the private sector.


    In a statement, Democratic Majority Leader Steny Hoyer of Maryland -- who represents a district rich with government workers -- acknowledged that "federal employees must be no different" than other Americans who are making sacrifices during difficult economic times. But Hoyer said that military personnel -- except for those "serving in harm's way" in places like Afghanistan and Iraq -- should also be subject to a pay freeze.

    A similar proposal to limit the federal workforce was named by House Republicans in their "Pledge to America" released before the midterm elections. The authors of that document suggested imposing a "net hiring freeze on non-security federal employees" that would "ensure that the public sector no longer grows at the expense of the private sector."

    At the beginning of his remarks Monday, Obama joked about the cut lip he received over the Thanksgiving weekend while playing basketball. Obama said that he had received a “clean bill of health” from doctors after receiving 12 stitches."



    Although I support this move I can't help to feel this is a "Hey look what I did" move". It should go farther and freeze congresses salary also! So much more needs to be done but hopefully this shows something of a change in thinking in the administration.
  • rnch

    Posts: 11524

    Nov 30, 2010 6:33 AM GMT
    how about a freeze on the salary of our congress members also?
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    Nov 30, 2010 7:36 AM GMT
    A political move to pacify the public and congress that he's trying to reduce the deficit. Federal workers are not over paid. There's just a lynch mob mentality since no one wants to really reform private industry for all they've done to put us in the mess we're in. Overpaid executives, embezzlement, inappropriate financial dealings and then all the give aways to the employees all these years while the federal workers were fighting to just get geographical cost of living adjustments. Yep, freeze their wages and with all that money we'll have to deficit paid off by years end! Pleaseeeeeeee.
  • Webster666

    Posts: 9217

    Nov 30, 2010 7:49 AM GMT
    Freezing government wages is a drop in the bucket, done mostly for show.

    We need to hit the American corporations that are getting filthy rich by running sweatshops, overseas.
    Charge them a huge tariff to bring their goods back here, to sell.

    We need to have the Federal government open factories, here in America.
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    Nov 30, 2010 12:44 PM GMT
    eb925guy saidA political move to pacify the public and congress that he's trying to reduce the deficit. Federal workers are not over paid. There's just a lynch mob mentality since no one wants to really reform private industry for all they've done to put us in the mess we're in. Overpaid executives, embezzlement, inappropriate financial dealings and then all the give aways to the employees all these years while the federal workers were fighting to just get geographical cost of living adjustments. Yep, freeze their wages and with all that money we'll have to deficit paid off by years end! Pleaseeeeeeee.


    Yup.
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    Nov 30, 2010 12:55 PM GMT
    Give the guy some credit...he's just preemptively doing this so it'll be harder to cut salaries later on. And the ball is now in the other court.
    I think the government should just voluntarily take a day off each week without pay. Who cares if you can't get mail for Saturday? Congress, on the other hand, needs to work its ass off until December 32nd, and not take time off to go on meet the press or fox news.
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    Nov 30, 2010 1:12 PM GMT
    q1w2e3 saidGive the guy some credit...he's just preemptively doing this so it'll be harder to cut salaries later on. And the ball is now in the other court.
    I think the government should just voluntarily take a day off each week without pay. Who cares if you can't get mail for Saturday? Congress, on the other hand, needs to work its ass off until December 32nd, and not take time off to go on meet the press or fox news.


    I agree that he's trying to defuse any attacks by the right wing in the new Congress.

    The cute but daft Aaron Shock is on Morning Joe this morning insisting we pay for extending unemployment benefits but saying it's fine to extend the Bush tax cuts for 2 years without raising taxes elsewhere or cutting spending.
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    Nov 30, 2010 2:41 PM GMT

    Well guys when people like SB flip out over smaller amounts, like this:

    http://www.realjock.com/gayforums/1257330


    Guys like him will be very happy about this topic because of this:

    "The White House says the move will save $2 billion during the rest of the current fiscal year and $28 billion over the next five years."

    ...and yes, it fits that your congress should also take a hit. Unfortunately, when we went through the same thing up here (only in our case the right wing Provincial gov't tore up contracts and got rid of some gov't workers then outsourced their jobs at a more than 50% pay cut), the heads of gov't increased their own pay considerably.

    -Doug
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    Nov 30, 2010 3:08 PM GMT
    Definately cut congressmens pay, and I'll add, make them pay market value for their insureance , then do a study on how many of them would benefit from those tax cuts for the rich above the $250,000, Post every one of them who would benefit on a list on the internet and on the front of the house and senate podiums. Title the list, Congressmen who Have a Conflict of Interest in Voting Themselves a Tax Break
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    Nov 30, 2010 7:59 PM GMT
    Why has this taken so long to do?

    One would of thought the deficit, would of been a higher priority. But then he is left wing, and they do love to spend. They would rather hand a man a fish to feed him for one meal, than teach him to fish, so he can feed himself, because then they are not dependant for the left wing hand outs; like Obamacare.
  • tongun18

    Posts: 593

    Nov 30, 2010 8:32 PM GMT
    southbeach1500 saidBut the real question is will Federal employees still be getting step increases and/or bonuses?

    And the correct thing to do is to cut the Federal bureaucracy by 25% (i.e. fire 25% of Federal employees, across the board).


    I'm all for cutting the fat but from what I understand most federal workers are overworked and underpaid as it is. Freezing their pay for two years is fine but a 25% across-the-board-cut seems reckless.

    I have a friend who graduated with honors from Yale Law and then took a job with the Justice Dept., where her starting salary was about 100k. It was a bit of a difficult decision for her as she was being courted by multi-national firms like O'Melveny & Myers and Latham & Watkins, where her starting salary would have been more than double what it is for the Justice Dept. She's already putting in roughly the same hours she would at a private firm too (in case you don't work at a law firm most new attorney's put in at about 200 hours per month--more at the big firms). But because she is a bit more civic minded than most she decided to go in to the public sector. Even if we're trying to keep things to a minimum we do need quality people like my friend to serve. There's already a disincentive to work for the public sector based on income we shouldn't be creating more by doubling their work load.
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    Nov 30, 2010 8:34 PM GMT
    southbeach1500 saidBut the real question is will Federal employees still be getting step increases and/or bonuses?

    And the correct thing to do is to cut the Federal bureaucracy by 25% (i.e. fire 25% of Federal employees, across the board).


    Why? Which departments? Who will provide the services that they are providing to states, localities and citizens?

    Like every other right winger, you put forward a sweeping claim that has no basis in reality and no actually plan for its execution. You would be a more credible interlocutor if you did.
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    Nov 30, 2010 8:37 PM GMT
    tongun18 said
    southbeach1500 saidBut the real question is will Federal employees still be getting step increases and/or bonuses?

    And the correct thing to do is to cut the Federal bureaucracy by 25% (i.e. fire 25% of Federal employees, across the board).


    I'm all for cutting the fat but from what I understand most federal workers are overworked and underpaid as it is. Freezing their pay for two years is fine but a 25% across-the-board-cut seems reckless.

    I have a friend who graduated with honors from Yale Law and then took a job with the Justice Dept., where her starting salary was about 100k. It was a bit of a difficult decision for her as she was being courted by multi-national firms like O'Melveny & Myers and Latham & Watkins, where her starting salary would have been more than double what it is for the Justice Dept. She's already putting in roughly the same hours she would at a private firm too (in case you don't work at a law firm most new attorney's put in at about 200 hours per month--more at the big firms). But because she is a bit more civic minded than most she decided to go in to the public sector. Even if we're trying to keep things to a minimum we do need quality people like my friend to serve. There's already a disincentive to work for the public sector based on income we shouldn't be creating more by doubling their work load.


    But, Tom, the issue here is not really the deficit for most right wingers. It is "shrinking" government (which has never once happened in the history of our country) for philosophical reasons, not to actually accomplish anything.

    To do so, they don't want the federal government to have good, smart, effective staff because that puts their lie to their constant claims that government doesn't work. It only doesn't work when they fuck it up.
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    Nov 30, 2010 8:39 PM GMT
    southbeach1500 said
    tongun18 said
    I'm all for cutting the fat but from what I understand most federal workers are overworked and underpaid as it is.


    The numbers tell a different story:

    Federal pay ahead of private industry

    Federal employees earn higher average salaries than private-sector workers in more than eight out of 10 occupations, a USA TODAY analysis of federal data finds.

    Accountants, nurses, chemists, surveyors, cooks, clerks and janitors are among the wide range of jobs that get paid more on average in the federal government than in the private sector.



    http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2010-03-04-federal-pay_N.htm


    No they don't. That's a cherry picked article and that compares apples to oranges. And the primary reason why the little grain of truth that does exist it because wages for most Americans have not risen (when adjusted for inflation) since the 1970s.

    The question isn't why the Federal government paying it's workers so much but why businesses (again with RECORD profits and RECORD bonuses) are paying their workers so little.
  • tongun18

    Posts: 593

    Nov 30, 2010 8:39 PM GMT
    southbeach1500 said
    tongun18 said
    I'm all for cutting the fat but from what I understand most federal workers are overworked and underpaid as it is.


    The numbers tell a different story:

    Federal pay ahead of private industry

    Federal employees earn higher average salaries than private-sector workers in more than eight out of 10 occupations, a USA TODAY analysis of federal data finds.

    Accountants, nurses, chemists, surveyors, cooks, clerks and janitors are among the wide range of jobs that get paid more on average in the federal government than in the private sector.



    http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2010-03-04-federal-pay_N.htm


    Those statistics are for 2008, a time when we were in the depths of the economic crisis, when private businesses were making massive cuts and are not typical when the US is under "normal" economic activity.
  • tongun18

    Posts: 593

    Nov 30, 2010 8:45 PM GMT
    southbeach1500 said
    tongun18 saidThose statistics are for 2008, a time when we were in the depths of the economic crisis, when private businesses were making massive cuts and are not typical when the US is under "normal" economic activity.


    You think it's any better in the private sector now?

    Now is the new normal.


    I think its better now than it was two years ago
  • tongun18

    Posts: 593

    Nov 30, 2010 8:49 PM GMT
    southbeach1500 said
    Christian73 said

    Christian73 said
    It is "shrinking" government (which has never once happened in the history of our country) for philosophical reasons, not to actually accomplish anything.


    Yep, because ever since FDR, the Federal government has been expanding into all sorts of areas in which it isn't supposed to.




    In fairness the government began expand after Washington left office. What authority did Jefferson have to make the Louisiana Purchase? Teddy Roosevelt began a number of federal programs, I think that's what Christian was referring to.
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    Nov 30, 2010 8:57 PM GMT
    southbeach1500 said
    Christian73 said
    But, Tom, the issue here is not really the deficit for most right wingers.


    Since you are a left wing socialist, please don't pretend to speak for those with political views opposite of yours. The deficit is one of the issues.




    Christian73 said
    It is "shrinking" government (which has never once happened in the history of our country) for philosophical reasons, not to actually accomplish anything.


    Yep, because ever since FDR, the Federal government has been expanding into all sorts of areas in which it isn't supposed to.



    Christian73 said
    To do so, they don't want the federal government to have good, smart, effective staff because that puts their lie to their constant claims that government doesn't work. It only doesn't work when they fuck it up.


    Again, please don't pretend to speak for those with political views opposite of yours.


    Nope. I'll keep calling them like I see them, unless you'd like to explain how anything I said is false.
  • tongun18

    Posts: 593

    Nov 30, 2010 8:57 PM GMT
    southbeach1500 said
    tongun18 said
    southbeach1500 said
    tongun18 saidThose statistics are for 2008, a time when we were in the depths of the economic crisis, when private businesses were making massive cuts and are not typical when the US is under "normal" economic activity.


    You think it's any better in the private sector now?

    Now is the new normal.


    I think its better now than it was two years ago


    There haven't been very many jobs added (we're still in the hole 10 million jobs) and the profits are a result of companies cutting expenses to the bone.

    Unemployment is stuck at almost 10% for over a year now.


    in 2008 we were hemorrhaging jobs, we aren't seeing the same rate of severe job loss.
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    Nov 30, 2010 8:58 PM GMT
    tongun18 said
    southbeach1500 said
    Christian73 said

    Christian73 said
    It is "shrinking" government (which has never once happened in the history of our country) for philosophical reasons, not to actually accomplish anything.


    Yep, because ever since FDR, the Federal government has been expanding into all sorts of areas in which it isn't supposed to.




    In fairness the government began expand after Washington left office. What authority did Jefferson have to make the Louisiana Purchase? Teddy Roosevelt began a number of federal programs, I think that's what Christian was referring to.


    Yes. And remember three of the greatest expansions of federal power where undertaken by the Bush administration in the form of Homeland Security, Medicare Part D and the PATRIOT Act.

    I'll start taking the libertarians seriously when they start taking civil liberties seriously. Instead it's all about funneling money to the rich and corporations.
  • tongun18

    Posts: 593

    Nov 30, 2010 9:01 PM GMT
    Christian73 said
    tongun18 said
    southbeach1500 said
    Christian73 said

    I'll start taking the libertarians seriously when they start taking civil liberties seriously. Instead it's all about funneling money to the rich and corporations.




    I take issue with that statement, I take civil liberties VERY seriously.
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    Nov 30, 2010 9:05 PM GMT
    southbeach1500 said
    tongun18 said
    southbeach1500 said
    tongun18 saidThose statistics are for 2008, a time when we were in the depths of the economic crisis, when private businesses were making massive cuts and are not typical when the US is under "normal" economic activity.


    You think it's any better in the private sector now?

    Now is the new normal.


    I think its better now than it was two years ago


    There haven't been very many jobs added (we're still in the hole 10 million jobs) and the profits are a result of companies cutting expenses to the bone.

    Unemployment is stuck at almost 10% for over a year now.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> I believe if you'll do some searching that you'll find, during the whole career of bush there were less jobs added over his 8 years than Obama added over his short term thus far. The republicans added debts to china for two wars, an unpaid for tax break for the the top earners, further incurred debt from china as well as medication benefits not paid for which meant more barrowing from China, then add to all this, near ruin of the balance of the economy by deregulation. No one promised this economy would be easy to turn around after such a deep hole was dug by trickle down economics, borrowing trillions of dollars with no benefit to Main Street, did they ???
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    Nov 30, 2010 10:12 PM GMT
    tongun18 said
    Christian73 said
    tongun18 said
    southbeach1500 said
    Christian73 said

    I'll start taking the libertarians seriously when they start taking civil liberties seriously. Instead it's all about funneling money to the rich and corporations.




    I take issue with that statement, I take civil liberties VERY seriously.


    I wasn't talking about you, Ton. What I have to wonder if where is the Tea Party calling for repeal of the PATRIOT Act or the dissolution of Homeland Security, which has proven to be enormously costly and ineffective. Where are the cries against the TSA illegal searching the bodies of Americans, despite no evidence that this, or not bringing hair gel on a plane, makes us safer .Similarly, if airline companies want these draconian tactics, let them pay for it.

    SB is a pilot. I'm sure he has greater insight than I do.
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    Nov 30, 2010 10:15 PM GMT
    southbeach1500 said
    realifedad said>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> I believe if you'll do some searching that you'll find, during the whole career of bush there were less jobs added over his 8 years than Obama added over his short term thus far. The republicans added debts to china for two wars, an unpaid for tax break for the the top earners, further incurred debt from china as well as medication benefits not paid for which meant more barrowing from China, then add to all this, near ruin of the balance of the economy by deregulation. No one promised this economy would be easy to turn around after such a deep hole was dug by trickle down economics, borrowing trillions of dollars with no benefit to Main Street, did they ???


    But that's kinda off topic.... And I truly am suspicious of these "pay freezes" so I'll ask again:

    Will Federal employees still be getting step increases and/or bonuses?



    The Times said the following, which seems to say no "bonuses" but maybe step increases if that coincides with a promotion.

    "The pay freeze Mr. Obama announced wiped out plans for a 1.4 percent across-the-board raise in 2011 for 2.1 million federal civilian employees, including those working at the Defense Department, and it would mean no raise in 2012. The freeze would not affect the nation’s uniformed military personnel, and civilian workers who are promoted would still receive the higher pay that comes with the higher grade or position. "