Well the Christmas and New Year's season is over and it's back to the grind. While I hope everyone had a wonderful and safe holiday season, it's now time to get back to the reporting of the mismanagement of our government.
The newest news: The way to make real money in this recession is to join the federal government's payroll. That's right folks, in a time where the government is taking over private enterprise and demanding the limiting of pay and bonuses for private sector employees, when the adjusted unemployment rate is reaching 17%, the federal employee is sitting above the turmoil when it comes to pay.
In a story released by USA Today on 12/10, the number of federal workers making a six-figure income has exploded over the last 18 months from 14% to 19%, NOT including including overtime and bonuses!! Think about that for a second, at 19%, nearly 1 of every 5 federal workers is making over $100,000. It makes me wonder what the 7.3M unemployed Americans think about that?
Just to condense the facts of the story for you:
Defense department civilian employees earning $150,000+ increased from 1,868 in 12/2007 to 10,100 in 06/2009. That is an astronomical leap of almost 541% within a 2 year period!
The Department of Transportation only had one person earning over $170,000 18 months ago, but today, there are almost 1,690 earning this generous wage.
In a bill expected to be signed by President Obama, these federal workers are expected to receive another 2% pay increase this year, while the private sector is expected to see only a <1%. This doesn't take into account the step increases (for longevity) averaging 1.5% per year.
Average salary for nation's 1.9M federal workers: $71.000. Average salary for nations 108M private sector workers: $50,028.
To be fair, some of the bonuses were enacted by President Bush (3% 2008, 3.9% 2009), so it's not President Obama specifically that I'm ranting about, but big government in general. At a time when many Americans are out of jobs and all Americans are feeling the bite of a failing economy, our representatives see it as acceptable to vote themselves, and their staff, pay increases.
When will our Government learn to be "representative" of the American people? Why should so many hurt and suffer, when the government that caused the financial mess to start, continues to thrive? I fear that the only resolution will come in November 2010, when the backlash against this waste is decisive and impacting. We must have long memories here. We must remember that while our neighbors, and ourselves, went without, the machinery of big government was well oiled with the taxpayer money of those suffering. Much like the health care debate, the fed is exempt from the program, and with this story, it would seem that they are also exempt from the realities of an economic recession.