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  1. 14 Sep '10 14:25
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PKuTm-ON904
  2. 14 Sep '10 19:47 / 2 edits
    I say Christie could begin to run on this.

    http://www.cato-at-liberty.org/federal-pay-continues-rapid-ascent/

    The article shows that in 2008, the average wage for 1.9 trillion federal civilian workers was $79,197, which is compared to an average of $50,028 for the nation's 108 million private sector workers. However, the federal advantage is even more pronounced when worker benefits are included. In 2008, federal worker compensation averaged a remarkable $119,982, which was more than double the private sector average of $59,909.

    The Federal bubble needs to be burst just like the real estate bubble. In short, federal pay needs to be suspended a number of years for the rest of the country to catch up. The current trend is not sustainable. Hopefully someone like Christie can burst it before the country goes belly up and then have it burst. Either way it is going to burst.
  3. 14 Sep '10 19:54
    Originally posted by whodey
    I say Christie could begin to run on this.

    http://www.cato-at-liberty.org/federal-pay-continues-rapid-ascent/

    The article shows that in 2008, the average wage for 1.9 trillion federal civilian workers was $79,197, which is compared to an average of $50,028 for the nation's 108 million private sector workers. However, the federal advantage is even more ...[text shortened]... t it before the country goes belly up and then have it burst. Either way it is going to burst.
    A government worker is, on average, more likely to have a desk job than someone working in the private sector, and desk jobs tend to pay more. You'd have to correct for this for any meaningful comparison.
  4. 14 Sep '10 20:07 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by whodey
    I say Christie could begin to run on this.

    http://www.cato-at-liberty.org/federal-pay-continues-rapid-ascent/

    The article shows that in 2008, the average wage for 1.9 trillion federal civilian workers was $79,197, which is compared to an average of $50,028 for the nation's 108 million private sector workers. However, the federal advantage is even more ...[text shortened]... t it before the country goes belly up and then have it burst. Either way it is going to burst.
    for the sake of argument - if we assume that the average government worker's job requires has the same level of education, skills, and experience as the average private sector worker's job -- and we assume that we could make large reductions in worker pay without significantly reducing the level of worker quality and motivation.

    If we do the math -- you have about 2 million workers each making $120,000-yr in pay+benefits -- a total of $240 billion. If we cut everyone's pay+benefits to $60,000-yr, that would be a total of $120 billion

    so that would reduce the deficit by $120 billion -- which would reduce the deficit from around $1500 billion to a mere $1380 billion. Even in this best case scenario, there's still a lot of deficit remaining.
  5. 14 Sep '10 20:12 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by KazetNagorra
    A government worker is, on average, more likely to have a desk job than someone working in the private sector, and desk jobs tend to pay more. You'd have to correct for this for any meaningful comparison.
    Nope. If you look the argument is not so much over salary as it is benefits. Even though the average government worker makes a little more on average, if you compare benefits those in government make twice as much as those in the private sector. To drive home the point, look at this article.

    http://www.seacoastonline.com/articles/20100909-OPINION-9090342

    Nationally there is between $1 trillion and $3 trillion public pensions that are unfunded and growing. As a result, there is an ever growing crisis in the public pension system.

    As the article states:

    "How did we get into such a predicament? Most of the blame goes to politics and irresponsible government. Thorughout the 1970's and 80's and 90's, the unions representing teachers and state employees lobbied to enlarge the size of their pensions to compensate for salaries that were, at that time, relatively low. Thieir allies in the Legislature actually changed the laws to "enhance" the pension payouts, but then neglected to fully fund them. The cost was simply pushed into the future, leaving somebody else to deal with the fallout."


    Now that somebody has arrived to deal with this fallout, at least in New Jersey. Now we need a president to take a crow bar to the union bosses.
  6. 14 Sep '10 20:45 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by whodey
    Nope. If you look the argument is not so much over salary as it is benefits. Even though the average government worker makes a little more on average, if you compare benefits those in government make twice as much as those in the private sector. To drive home the point, look at this article.

    http://www.seacoastonline.com/articles/20100909-OPINION-909034 at least in New Jersey. Now we need a president to take a crow bar to the union bosses.
    the pension system is the way most businesses used to do things (when unions in the private sector had much more clout than they have now) - but the private sector has since mostly switched to 401(k)s -- and you could make a case that government workers should also be switched to 401(k)s as well. Perhaps it could be grandfathered in so that existing workers would keep their pensions, while putting all the newly hired workers onto a 401(k) system.

    this would still mean a major confrontation with the unions - and there's a reason why unions have historically been able to win generous pay and benefits for their members - so things could get ugly. (unless New Jersey's unions have become pipsqueaks, I suspect Christie will be facing more than his fair share in the upcoming years).

    It would be refreshing to see a candidate at least discuss this topic.

    So if we do the math -- assuming that the workers really do warrant an average pay of $80,000 - maybe we could reduce the benefits so that their total compensation dropped from $120,000-yr to $100,000-yr --- once this was fully phased in, this would reduce the deficit by $40 billion per year ($60 billion if you could knock the compensation down to $90,000).

    It might not be much, but at least it would be something specific.
  7. Standard member MacSwain
    Who is John Galt?
    14 Sep '10 20:46
    Originally posted by Melanerpes
    If we do the math -- you have about 2 million workers each making....
    Is your 2 millions number for New Jersey only?
    Just did a check and this graph shows 20 millions. http://www.data360.org/dsg.aspx?Data_Set_Group_Id=228
  8. 14 Sep '10 20:55 / 5 edits
    Originally posted by MacSwain
    Is your 2 millions number for New Jersey only?
    Just did a check and this graph shows 20 millions. http://www.data360.org/dsg.aspx?Data_Set_Group_Id=228
    we've been discussing the federal budget and its deficit.

    the graph you posted is the total number of government employees at ALL levels of government (the blue line) -- the red line is the total number of FEDERAL employees (around 3 million which I assume includes non-civilian workers) -- the green line is state govt employees (around 5 million) and the purple line is local govt employees (around 12 million).
  9. 15 Sep '10 03:28 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by Melanerpes
    the pension system is the way most businesses used to do things (when unions in the private sector had much more clout than they have now) - but the private sector has since mostly switched to 401(k)s -- and you could make a case that government workers should also be switched to 401(k)s as well. Perhaps it could be grandfathered in so that existing worke sation down to $90,000).

    It might not be much, but at least it would be something specific.
    What I would love to see is someone discuss gutting bureaucracy, not just reducing salaries/pensions. Of course, this labels me as a radical right winger I suppose. :'(

    Having said that, there is no doubt that those in government need to share in the economic turmoil the rest of the country is feeling. It's time to feel a little pain fellas!!
  10. 16 Sep '10 01:07
    Originally posted by whodey
    What I would love to see is someone discuss gutting bureaucracy, not just reducing salaries/pensions. Of course, this labels me as a radical right winger I suppose. :'(

    Having said that, there is no doubt that those in government need to share in the economic turmoil the rest of the country is feeling. It's time to feel a little pain fellas!!
    More evidence that you have a big man-crush on Clinton. Were you born in Arkansas?
  11. 16 Sep '10 01:17
    I think there is an easy way to save some money here:

    Do away with all expense accounts. If government officials want to be compensated for expenses, then they can bring back receipts. In no way should officials be compensated for buying alcohol. No free meals on the tax payer. If a federal employee is on a job related trip and needs housing, then give a receipt up to a three star hotel. If the employee believes that he or she deserves better, then pay for the difference themselves.

    No more private vacations on air force 1 or 2. If you do, then you pay for all of the expenses out of your pocket. No more free travel for federal employees. If they want to hop a military flight, then maybe, but no more traveling on the tax payer's dollar.


    Freeze all pay at 2008's pay scale until the budget gets balanced and half of our present federal debt is paid off.

    Only provide insurance for the employee. Let the employee pay for insuring the rest of the family.

    Cut all staffs Senator and Congress person's staffs by 50% until the pay freeze is over.


    You've got to get the Senator and Representative's attention before they will act.
  12. 16 Sep '10 04:49
    Originally posted by TerrierJack
    More evidence that you have a big man-crush on Clinton. Were you born in Arkansas?
    After havng the likes of "W" and Obama I think I have fallen in love with him.
  13. 16 Sep '10 07:12
    Originally posted by whodey
    What I would love to see is someone discuss gutting bureaucracy, not just reducing salaries/pensions. Of course, this labels me as a radical right winger I suppose. :'(

    Having said that, there is no doubt that those in government need to share in the economic turmoil the rest of the country is feeling. It's time to feel a little pain fellas!!
    Cutting bureaucracy is always a worthwhile goal but not easy to accomplish. How would you go about cutting bureaucracy in the public and private sector?
  14. 16 Sep '10 17:01
    Originally posted by whodey
    What I would love to see is someone discuss gutting bureaucracy, not just reducing salaries/pensions. Of course, this labels me as a radical right winger I suppose. :'(

    Having said that, there is no doubt that those in government need to share in the economic turmoil the rest of the country is feeling. It's time to feel a little pain fellas!!
    There probably should be a complete review of the bureacracy every few years or so to root out wasteful practices and find ways to increase efficiency.

    The best way would probably be to appoint a non-partisan commission of management experts to do this and come up with a list of recommendations that would go to Congress for an up or down vote with no amendments.

    But even if this was done, is there any way that this would persuade you or me that all the waste had in fact been rooted out? Is there any way for anyone to really know whether or not the government is being run efficiently unless we ourselves got an advanced degree in management and were then actually able to visit all the government offices to check up on them?
  15. 16 Sep '10 17:09 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by Eladar
    I think there is an easy way to save some money here:

    Do away with all expense accounts. If government officials want to be compensated for expenses, then they can bring back receipts. In no way should officials be compensated for buying alcohol. No free meals on the tax payer. If a federal employee is on a job related trip and needs housing, then giv er.


    You've got to get the Senator and Representative's attention before they will act.
    most of this seems to make sense -- not sure if you'll really save all that much, but it makes sense.

    One idea that might produce some real savings -- we should have a major crackdown on any perks (including a pay freeze) that members of Congress (and the president) enjoy until they have actually produced a balanced budget. If a balanced budget is not in place by say 2015, we will cut Congressional pay by 10% - and for each year that goes by after that without a balanced budget, their pay will be cut by an additional 10%.

    Of course, you might have a hard time getting Congress to pass such legislation...