“If everybody took an attitude of shared sacrifice, we could solve our deficit and debt problem next week,” said President Obama in August of 2011. “I need you to send a message to folks in Washington: Stop drawing lines in the sand.”
Well, this past Friday, the administration informed federal labor unions that part of Obama’s proposed budget will be a one-percent pay increase for them. Pay increases count as sacrifices, apparently. Our country is broke, so we all need to sacrifice some, and that means spending more money by giving government employees a stimulus in their paychecks.
Since February of 2011, federal employees have had their salary frozen in place–a sacrifice. But now they’ve sacrificed enough and it’s time to give them more money. If that doesn’t make sense, allow William R. Dougan, president of the National Federation of Federal Employees, to explain:
“After all that federal workers have sacrificed the past three years, they have earned a raise.”
You see, to the greedy species known as Federalis employis, a sacrifice is only a sacrifice until it becomes uncomfortable, not because it is uncomfortable.
However, completely disregarding Obama’s command to the “folks in Washington” to “stop drawing lines in the sand,” labor unions are drawing a line in the sand, saying that a mere one-percent pay increase is “unconscionable.”
David Cox, Sr., the president of the American Federation of Government Employees, the largest federal labor union in America, said, “It is not enough to allow federal employees to make up lost ground from two-plus years of frozen pay. It is not enough to allow workers, most of whom earn very modest salaries ranging from $24,000 to $70,000, to maintain living standards.”
What’s this? Has Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke’s Obama-endorsed policy of printing more and more money caused such inflation that the cost of living has gone up?
Someone needs to tell Cox to toughen up. If we lowly serfs can survive on $24,000 a year, so can he. Someone should also tell him that he does have the option of finding another job, something completely different from being a useless, parasitic appendage of the government.
Luckily for Cox, this one-percent pay increase probably will not happen, so he can go back to enjoying his frozen salary and quit whining about being paid more money; congressional Republicans will not likely back Obama’s budget (just as Democrats in the Senate haven’t backed Obama’s budgets during his entire presidency). Republicans are the ones, after all, who, God bless them, voted to freeze the salaries of all federal employees, themselves included.
And that is sacrifice.