More Highly Paid Federal Employees

November 14, 2010

Here we go again with another report on federal government employee pay outpacing pay in the private sector. A recent analysis from USA Today notes the following bit of information:

The number of federal workers earning $150,000 or more a year has soared tenfold in the past five years and doubled since President Obama took office.

For example, the report notes that the number of federal employees making $150,000 in 2005 was 7,420; in 2010, it is 82,034. This is in light of previous news that the average federal employee was making double the compensation of the average private sector employee.

All of this occurs at a time of economic stagnation where the unemployment rate remains near 10 percent and the federal debt is near $14 trillion. Never forget the fact that taxpayers, the same taxpayers who are making less on average, are the ones paying for all of this.

The term ‘public service’ has often been used in the past to imply that government employees are making a sacrifice to serve the public. Perhaps, in light of these trends, the term should be scrapped.


Summer of Recovery?

September 8, 2010

Do they really think they can keep fooling people? Hopefully, there won’t be a sequel.


Another Job Growth Plan = Selective Subsidization

September 4, 2010

If the history of political meddling in the economy teaches us anything, it is that people seldom come to a realization of basic economic realities. That’s why President Obama can come up with yet another plan to ‘stimulate’ our economy like this:

That’s why we need to take further steps to create jobs and keep the economy growing, including extending tax cuts for the middle class and investing in the areas of our economy where the potential for job growth is greatest.

The simple fact lost on many is that all of this involves taking money we don’t have (which will mean increased debt and/or future devaluing of our currency) and spending it in ways that politicians deem appropriate. What it really, in effect, represents is government taking our money from us and deciding how to spend it for us.

[picapp align=”left” wrap=”true” link=”term=obama+economy&iid=9647673″ src=”http://view4.picapp.com/pictures.photo/image/9647673/president-obama-speaks-the/president-obama-speaks-the.jpg?size=500&imageId=9647673″ width=”234″ height=”167″ /]”Extending tax cuts for the middle class” implies that only that segment of income earners defined as “middle class” by politicians and deemed worthy of tax breaks will benefit from such a measure. The “investing” (which is government code for “spending”) in areas of the economy “where the potential for job growth is greatest” means government deciding what industries and individuals should be subsidized.

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More Spending on Government Employment

June 16, 2010

Spending is something politicians in Washington rarely grow tired of, despite any amount of soaring debt. Perhaps that explains President Obama’s recent push in a letter to congressional leaders to appropriate more money (the government doesn’t have) to go toward preventing supposed “massive layoffs of teachers, police and firefighters.”

The president’s use of the word “emergency” to characterize the need for these “additional measures to spur job creation” is the typical rallying cry of all government intervention. That job creation, however appears to be mostly in government — much to the detriment of the majority of taxpayers working in the private sector.

[picapp align=”left” wrap=”true” link=”term=obama+economy&iid=9030727″ src=”http://view.picapp.com/pictures.photo/image/9030727/president-obama-speaks-the/president-obama-speaks-the.jpg?size=500&imageId=9030727″ width=”234″ height=”149″ /]Though Obama urged the expansion of small-business loans and tax credits, he was also concerned about the effect of the economic downturn on state and local government employment. He even used as part of his argument for increased funding to public employment the costs that would be needed to help those axed government employees look for work, seemingly justifying a larger expense (the cost of full employment) by warning of a lesser expense (the cost of helping those former government employees find future employment).

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One Year of ‘Recovery’

February 17, 2010

To mark the one-year anniversary of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, here are some of my previous posts on the less-than stellar results of the “stimulus”:

Also of note is this recent CBS News/New York Times poll showing that only 6 percent of people think the stimulus package has actually created jobs. So much for bringing “hope” to the people.


Stimulus Waste

March 22, 2009

Here is the text of an email I wrote in the middle of the stimulus bill vote:

With a quick search of the roughly $790 billion stimulus bill just passed by the House and soon to be passed by the Senate (that, by the way, was just posted for actual public view less than 24 hours ago), I was able to find the following non-stimulus-related items (below) that we will spend money we don’t have on. And this is all just from the first half of the over 1000 page bill.

– $146,000,000 for national park maintenance and repair
– $15,000,000 for historic preservation at historically black colleges
– $140,000,000 for the U.S. Geological Survey
– $600,000,000 for the Hazardous Substance Superfund
– $25,000,000 for repairs to the Smithsonian
– $50,000,000 in grants to fund “arts projects and activities which preserve jobs in the non-profit arts sector threatened by declines in philan-thropic and other support during the current economic downturn”
– $1,000,000,000 to “construct, renovate or repair existing non-Federal research facilities” (medical research facilities)
– $3,000,000,000 for school improvement grants
– $1,300,000,000 for Amtrak
– $225,000,000 in grants “to combat violence against women”
– $1,000,000,000 to the Transportation and Security Administration “for procurement and installation of checked baggage explosives detection systems and check-point explosives detection equipment”
– $1,000,000,000 for Head Start
– An additional $90,000,000 for educating the public about the transition to digital television
– $1,000,000,000 for NASA

Keep in mind that this is supposed to be an economic stimulus bill that proponents argue will save our faltering economy. Yet most members of Congress have probably not even read the entire bill. It has been rushed through using the politically tried-and-true method of scaring people — scaring them into believing that something must be done to avoid utter economic doom. While some of the above spending items may have merit in separate bills, they have nothing to do with stimulating the economy. This is not to mention the fact the Constitution does not allow for most of these expenditures on the part of the Congress.

This is around $790 billion dollars. That is roughly $2600 for every man, woman and child in the United States. The only way for government to come up with this money is to either borrow it or print it. Borrowing it further increases our government’s debt (owned by other countries, especially China). Printing it leads to inflation, which makes everyone’s dollar worth less. Of borrowing, Thomas Jefferson said, “The principle of spending money to be paid by posterity, under the name of funding, is but a swindling futurity on a large scale.” And economist Milton Friedman said, “Inflation is one form of taxation that can be imposed without legislation.”

There is no free lunch — someone always pays when Congress doles out money.