Tuesday, April 05, 2011

If you can't say anything nice...

You probably shouldn't write a blog post.

I haven't felt much like writing lately...I feel like things have been coming at me from all sides.

First there is the shutdown...it is looking more and more likely. And I am really tired of being America's whipping boy.

Federal employee salaries make up about 0.25% of the budget. It is the big untouchables that make up 85% of the budget: social security, medicare, defense, and debt maintenance. But of course, let's see if we can balance the budget by cutting NPR, foreign aid, federal salaries. Oh, and let's not forget to give the rich a tax cut. Because they'd take that money and create more jobs...except that as recent tax cuts and record profits have shown, they aren't.

And there are folks just jonesing to shut the government, many of them in Congress. Of course, THEY won't lose their pay. Those Congressmen, like the one who complained he was "barely scraping by" on $174,000 a year (wish I had THAT problem), can't go without his salary during the shutdown because his family needs the money. But those Congressmen, unlike the "essential employees" who will be forced to work but may never get paid for it, won't even have to wait for their paycheck. They'll get paid all along...because they need their salary.

But I guess my family doesn't need ours. Yes, we have two incomes, but we are both federal employees. So we lose both of our salaries.

Makes it challenging to pay the bills.

And for those who are calling for all "non-essential" employees to be fired...I would remind you that they are people like me, who are in training. They are people like park rangers, janitors, and more. Hard working people who the government can do without so long as it seriously scales back what it does. Things I bet you'll miss when it happens.

And then we have it coming from the other side...the Department.

The committee of those who get to decide decided that my wife could not do in country language training.

Meaning we will likely have to spend a year apart.

Even though we have already spend THREE YEARS of her nine years with the Department apart at the needs of the service.

Even though it will cost tens of thousands of dollars MORE for her to stay here rather than come with me. (But it is different pots of money, they tell me...like those pots don't all come from the same big pot...no wonder we have budget problems).

We are appealling, but not optimistic.

Told you I had nothing good to say...

5 comments:

Elizabeth said...

Call me and let's strategize on the in-country language training. I have some ideas...

Selim Ariturk said...

In all seriousness, have you considered filing a complaint with the inspector general? They are supposed to be on the lookout for waste and mismanagement. Tearing you two apart sounds like a huge waste of money. What do you think?

Digger said...

I'd love to Elizabeth, but I don't know which Elizabeth this is!

Kelly Bembry Midura said...

well said...and the time for being nice is pretty much over...

Keeping Pace said...

I think it needs to be written into the law that, in the event of a government shutdown due to no budget being passed by Congress, Congressmen and women will continue to work without guarantee of pay (which is quite possibly what is going to happen to the military next week) until a budget is passed. I'll bet that would light a fire under them! Too bad they'll never pass such a measure on themselves.