Have you noticed that federal employees have become termites eating away at the very fiber of America? You watched as the Obama Administration fenced off National War Memorials while government workers held lavish conferences replete with expensive wine and suites. Federal employees receive pay and perks that far exceed those of the private sector, especially retirement benefits that are almost unheard of in the real world. But maybe the biggest advantage of all is job security, immunity from getting fired no matter how serious the delinquency. There is a pattern of acceptance of wrongdoing that is bound to produce more misbehavior in the absence of fear of losing one’s job. You better set down before you read the rest of the story. While veterans are dying while waiting for treatment that never comes because of phony appointment lists, bureaucrats get merit bonuses on top of huge salaries. IRS employees received these bonuses while targeting conservative groups even though the bureaucrats owe back taxes. You can’t make this stuff up!
Jim McElhatton reports in the Washington Times:
A program analyst at the Department of Housing and Urban Development spent up to three hours a day for five years working on private business deals — including once arranging to supply lap dancers for a private party — while he was supposed to be doing government work.
Another HUD employee — an auditor — was investigated for running a trucking business from her government office, according to investigative records obtained by The Washington Times.
In both cases, the investigators referred their findings to prosecutors, who declined to press criminal charges, sending the cases back to HUD officials, who let both employees remain on the job.
Why should they be allowed to steal from taxpayers and keep their jobs? They have been paid for the time they were using for their own private benefit. They stole that pay. Case closed.
Out of millions of federal bureaucrats, Rep. John L. Mica of Florida said at a hearing into the EPA misconduct, “I can probably count all the people on two hands I’ve seen fired, but something needs to be changed when people are breaking the law, when you have this GS-14 sitting there abusing his position, his salary, ripping off the taxpayers.”
For the most part Rep. Mica was right. I have a good memory, in fact, I never forget. Thirty-three years ago Air Traffic Controllers demanded an across the board pay raise of $10,000 and a 32 hour work week. That was when starting pay was about $20,000. To get their way, 13,000 controllers walked out causing chaos and airline flight cancellations. While Jimmy Carter made sure bureaucrats could unionize, it is not legal for bureaucrats to strike. The 11,000 controllers who refused to return to work were fired by President Ronald Reagan. They were fired and they stayed fired. Yes Toto, I’ve a feeling we’re not in Kansas any more. Do you think these bureaucrats at the Veterans Administration Hospitals, IRS, EPA, DOJ, BLM and NSA would still be on the job if Ronald Reagan was president? President Obama is mad as hell but too busy fund raising and golfing to actually do anything. Eric Shinseki is mad as hell but has reigned over the VA for a long time while veterans die waiting for help. What has Shinseki done besides fiddle and make promises? Do you remember that Obama fired hundreds of Generals, Admirals, Captains and Colonels. One Four Star General because of comments made by his staff that were reported in the Rolling Stone Magazine.
The day the Post Office allowed workers to become unionized was the day the Post Office began to die a slow agonizing death. Talk about bad ideas, the worst of all is to allow government employees to belong to unions. One bureaucrat negotiates with another bureaucrat for benefits. Labor wants three hours a week to exercise while being paid. Heck, what’s good for the goose is also good for the gander. Management would like some of that free exercise time too.
There is no black lung, child labor problems, sweat shops or poor working conditions in the government. There is no excuse for unions. If government employees are going to bargain for benefits it should be between federal workers and taxpayers, not between federal workers and federal workers. The only reason federal employees are permitted to unionize is because almost 100% of their donations go to Democrats.
Union activity in the private sector has been dropping for years but there are more than a million union members working for the federal government. Maybe that’s why the Obama Administration has no qualms about cutting pay and benefits for veterans and Armed Forces Personnel, they are not represented by unions. When a pension cut is mentioned for federal employees, the unions start screaming. The President of the American Federation of Government Employees had this to say, “Despite the extraordinarily hard work of several Congressional leaders, AFGE cannot support any budget deal that asks for more from federal employees. AFGE represents more than just the 670,000 federal and D.C government employees on the rolls today, but every other federal worker who will one day take the oath and be forced to live with this needless pension cut.” I wonder, can we ask federal employees to do more? Maybe give us taxpayers a day’s work for a day’s pay?
Employees at a Missouri facility awarded $1.2 billion to process Obamacare applications told a local news station that they were “just doing nothing — absolutely nothing” over the past several months.
“You sit there and you wait and you wait and you wait,” one employee told KMOV, a Saint Louis TV Station.
Over her six months at the facility, she said she processed only six total applications; another employee was told by her supervisor that processing just one or two applications per month was sufficient.
To pass the time, employees would play Pictionary, 20 Questions, and create other games.
“Just doing nothing — absolutely nothing,” the first employee described her day. “Looking at each other, comparing each others’ scarves — ‘Oh, that’s cute’ — that’s it, no work.”
KMOV reports that the Wentzville, Missouri operation is run by British-owned company Serco, which received $1.2 billion to hire employees to process applications.
If government employees can enjoy a stay in a luxury hotel made famous on The Bachelor, then surely Congress could find somewhere to make spending cuts. In November, a group of federal government employees connected with the U.S. Coral Reef Task Force enjoyed a trip to St. Croix, courtesy of taxpayers. Though no reports of long bar tabs and souvenir receipts have surfaced like the General Services Administration run up at their Las Vegas conference, a few details have raised eyebrows.
Government employees stayed in the Buccaneer Hotel, a beachfront resort made famous by the television show The Bachelor. At a time of supposedly tight budgets, the task force could have at least proposed a more modest way to hear from regional governors and others about the status of the coral reefs.
Further, the trip itself did nothing directly to improve the environment. Taxpayers can only hope the week of lecturers and public events along with the annual business meeting will eventually produce something in the way of improved environmental quality.
Perhaps no obscenely wasteful spending took place over the week, that much is unclear. But also unclear is why this program exists in the first place. With the task force spread across 11 different federal agencies, it is difficult to understand how much it costs taxpayers and whether it is successful or not. There are many nonprofit organizations, research institutes, universities, clubs, community groups, networking coalitions, and businesses in the Caribbean alone working to improve coral reefs and educate the public. The Coral Reef Alliance lists 10 pages worth of organizations working on coral reef issues in the U.S. With such a clear and committed effort, why are taxpayers footing the bill (the size and effectiveness of which is unclear) for the federal government to join the party?
Even with a national debt of $17 trillion and counting, some in Congress are maneuvering to replace spending cuts from sequestration with even more spending. But stories of wasteful spending cropping up now and then make clear that if the federal government can “afford” such questionable purchases, clearly there is room to cut. The longer Congress waits to budget, the more important cutting wasteful spending and tackling the nation’s debt becomes.
Have you heard any politician run on a platform of holding federal employees and contractors accountable for their behavior? Are any politicians advocating doing away with the great federal union experiment? Who’s watching YOUR money? Do federal bureaucrats work for you or the union bosses?