On December 21, U.S. President Barack Obama issued an executive order giving all federal workers except the U.S. Postal Service a holiday on December 24. The Los Angeles Times estimated the cost of the shutdown at $100 million and noted that in addition to Christmas Eve, federal employees got, count ’em, 10 paid holidays in 2012. According to the Congressional Budget Office, federal pay and benefits outpace those of the private sector, and on December 27, two days after Christmas, President Barack Obama took measures to make federal pay even higher.
The President of the United States issued an executive order giving pay raises to federal workers, members of the House and Senate, and Vice President Joseph Biden, a serial plagiarist whose pay will increase from $225,521 to $231,900. The raises involved no extra duties or work for federal employees, and no sacrifices. As one commentator noted, Vice President Biden already gets “every single day off.” The timing is also of interest.
On December 26, the day before President Obama’s pay-bump order, U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner announced that on December 31, the nation would reach its debt ceiling of $16.4 trillion and have to undertake “extraordinary measures” to avoid default. Those extraordinary measures would include benefit cuts, higher taxes and less take-home pay for virtually all Americans fortunate enough to have a job.
The House has approved a bill to rescind the pay raise executive order but a full 129 House members sided with the raise. That confirms that the government ruling class views everybody else in the spirit of “let them eat cake.” But perhaps the late Frank Zappa put it better:
You say yer life’s a bum deal
’N yer up against the wall…
Well, people, you ain’t even got no
Deal at all
’Cause what they do
They just takes care
of NUMBER ONE
An’ NUMBER ONE ain’t YOU
You ain’t even NUMBER TWO