Liberty is an inherently offensive lifestyle. Living in a free society guarantees that each one of us will see our most cherished principles and beliefs questioned and in some cases mocked. That psychic discomfort is the price we pay for basic civic peace. It's worth it. It's a pragmatic principle. Defend everyone else's rights, because if you don't there is no one to defend yours. -- MaxedOutMama

I don't just want gun rights... I want individual liberty, a culture of self-reliance....I want the whole bloody thing. -- Kim du Toit

The most glaring example of the cognitive dissonance on the left is the concept that human beings are inherently good, yet at the same time cannot be trusted with any kind of weapon, unless the magic fairy dust of government authority gets sprinkled upon them.-- Moshe Ben-David

The cult of the left believes that it is engaged in a great apocalyptic battle with corporations and industrialists for the ownership of the unthinking masses. Its acolytes see themselves as the individuals who have been "liberated" to think for themselves. They make choices. You however are just a member of the unthinking masses. You are not really a person, but only respond to the agendas of your corporate overlords. If you eat too much, it's because corporations make you eat. If you kill, it's because corporations encourage you to buy guns. You are not an individual. You are a social problem. -- Sultan Knish

All politics in this country now is just dress rehearsal for civil war. -- Billy Beck

Friday, March 05, 2010

If You Want More of Something, Subsidize It

I've told this story before, but the mother of one of my previous co-workers is employed by the Federal government. She works for the Census Bureau. According to him, for about two and a half years at a stretch, she doesn't have much to do - to the point that she'll take novels to the office to read. For about eighteen months her job is @ssh*les and elbows, but still, it's not all that demanding. In addition to her 30 months of, essentially, loafing, she gets several weeks of vacation, sick time, all the national holidays off, excellent medical and dental insurance, a generous retirement plan, penultimate job security - all the perks of working for Uncle Sugar.

During one holiday dinner, as the family was gathered around the dinner table, she said in a fit of enthusiasm, "I don't know why everyone doesn't work for the government!"

It was quiet around that table for a moment, then my co-worker replied, "We do, for about the first five months of every year."

I saw one of the headlines on the front page of USAToday this morning this story:
Federal pay ahead of private industry

Federal employees earn higher average salaries than private-sector workers in more than eight out of 10 occupations, a USA TODAY analysis of federal data finds.
Accountants, nurses, chemists, surveyors, cooks, clerks and janitors are among the wide range of jobs that get paid more on average in the federal government than in the private sector.

Overall, federal workers earned an average salary of $67,691 in 2008 for occupations that exist both in government and the private sector, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics data. The average pay for the same mix of jobs in the private sector was $60,046 in 2008, the most recent data available.
But wait! That's not all!
These salary figures do not include the value of health, pension and other benefits, which averaged $40,785 per federal employee in 2008 vs. $9,882 per private worker, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis.
(My emphasis. And Congress wants to tax "Cadillac" health plans?)

This bit of news certainly explains this chart from last year:

Government: Pitchforks, torches, tar, feathers, rail. Some assembly required.

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