President calls for 2 year wage freeze on federal employees – BFD

In a symbolic gesture to show that he at least thinks about the economy-killing federal deficits and unsustainable debt load run up by his regime, our dear comrade leader is proposing a 2 year wage freeze for federal employees. (story here) The freeze would only affect Executive branch employees and excludes most military personnel. Sounds like he’s bringing his “laser-like” focus on the economy to the fore.

President Barack Obama on Monday proposed a two-year freeze of the salaries of some 2 million federal workers, trying to seize the deficit-cutting initiative from Republicans with a sudden, dramatic stroke. Though signaling White House concern over record deficits, the freeze would make only a tiny dent in annual deficits or the nation’s $14 trillion debt.”Small businesses and families are tightening their belts,” Obama said in brief remarks at the White House. “The government should, too.” The administration said the plan was designed to save more than $5 billion over the first two years.

The proposal, which must be approved by Congress, would not apply to the military, but it would affect all others on the Executive Branch payroll. It would not affect members of Congress or their staffs, defense contractors, postal workers or federal court judges and workers.

Obama’s move was an attempt to get in front of Republican plans to slash federal pay and the workforce next year, when they will flex more legislative muscle than now. It came a day ahead of Obama’s meeting at the White House with both Republicans and Democratic leaders — his first with Republicans since the midterm elections — and two days before the deadline for recommendations by his deficit-reduction commission.

All I can say is BFD – the supposed $5B “savings” over two years is not even worth mentioning. (more here)

Actually, it will make a miniscule dent in $2 trillion in deficits.  If the savings get calculated over two years, then we have to do the same with the deficits they supposedly address.  The savings, assuming they actually occur, will amount to a reduction of 0.25% in the biennial deficits.  Calling it a drop in the bucket is an insult to both drops and buckets.  It’s a single grain of sand from the coast.

But I guess it’s the thought that counts – you know, federal employees “sharing the pain” and all. As this piece (from the NYT) painfully tries to find any “positive” spin on our dear comrade’s plan – it’s like a fart in a gale storm.

“The hard truth is that getting this deficit under control is going to require some broad sacrifice, and that sacrifice must be shared by employees of the federal government,” Mr. Obama told reporters. He called federal workers “patriots who love their country” but added, “I’m asking civil servants to do what they’ve always done” for the nation.

The pay freeze amounted to an opening bid as the president and Republican Congressional leaders begin jousting in earnest over tax and spending policy. It also illustrated how Mr. Obama can use his office on occasion to get ahead of newly elected Republicans; they had been talking about making such a move when they assume control of the House and additional Senate seats in January.

Yeah, good luck with that. He’s such a bloody genius, isn’t he?

Of course the public unions and left wing pundits are predictably not happy with all this talk of “shared sacrifice.” After all, these are public servants we’re talking about here – “patriots.” BLECH…

John Gage, president of the 600,000-member American Federation of Government Employees, called the decision “a slap at working people. … To symbolically hit at federal employees I think is just wrong.” He said the move would not really save as much as the White House claims because federal employees often get just a fraction of projected raises.

Colleen Kelley, head of the 150,000-member National Treasury Employees Union, said union officials would try to derail the proposal in Congress. She may find some sympathy with union-friendly Democrats still in control for another month.

“We’re going to do everything we can to make this not happen and to explore all our options,” Kelley said.

Given that this only affects Cost Of Living Adjustments (COLA), federal employees could still see increases through step increases (pay grade) and bonuses. So will there be any actual “savings?” Don’t count on it – federal employees take care of their own.

Will we actually see this cost savings?  Probably not.  Gabriel Malor received an official explanation given to federal employees today, which assured them that the freeze “will not impact step increases or bonuses for federal workers.”  It applies to cost-of-living increases, mainly.  If an agency wants to give a worker an increase, they just need to increase their pay grade or boost their bonuses to make it happen.

So don’t worry fellow patriots, we’re just freezing your COLAs – you’ll still get your step increases and bonuses. Bonuses? Huh? WTF?

With all of this onerous shared sacrifice, one wonders if more federal employees patriots will be compelled to cheat on their taxes. I really feel for these patriots – the tears are running down my legs…

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One Response to “President calls for 2 year wage freeze on federal employees – BFD”

  1. […] President calls for 2 year wage freeze on federal employees – BFD … […]

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