Sunday, June 07, 2009

Even Carter understood better than this dude.

Remember Carter and his sweaters? Turning down the thermostat in the White House? He sucked as a president, but even I have to admit that he probably honestly did "felel our pain."

A common little game folks play in politics is the "Are you better off now, than you were X months/years ago?"

Well, for some, that answer is Yes. Date night in New York city one weekend, Paris another.

I don't know which is in worst taste; the Obamas taking full advantage of their presidential privilege during these very difficult times, or the tone deaf media following them like love-sick puppies flaunting it to what they assume is an adoring public.

Lapeer County, where I live, just arrived at an unemployment rate of 16.9%. How do you think all those folks who lost their job this week feel about Obama, and family, living it up in Paris?

In further tone-deaf fashion, the House just passed a bill that will tack on more benefits for federal employees. With a $938 million price tag, HRC 626 give "parents" four weeks of paid leave after the birth or adoption of a child.

"These are tough times, regardless of what industry you're in," said Rep. Christopher Lee, R-N.Y. "Think about the retail workers who are being forced to do more with less. Think about that, when Washington turns around and offers more generous fringe benefits to public sector employees."

Rejected were amendments that would have required federal employees to use their available leave first, or to take an advance on future leave. It's not as if Federal employees didn't already have a generous policy in regards to "time off"

VACATION/SICK DAYS: For your first 3 years of service you earn vacation at 4 hours per pay period (26 pay periods per year) for a total of 13 days. After 3 years of service you earn 6 hours per pay period and adjusted to total 20 days per year. After 15 years service you earn 8 hours per pay period or 26 days a year. For part-time employees, leave earned is prorated. You may accumulate 30 days and carry it over from year to year. However, any time earned over the 30 days you must use or lose. Sick leave is accrued at 4 hours per pay period (13 days per year) and does not change with length of service. Leave Bank and Leave Transfer programs provide the voluntary option of donating annual leave and, in turn, applying to use leave from the bank in medical or family emergencies. The Family and Medial Leave Act makes it easier for you to use sick leave to care for family members up to a 13-day maximum per year.

You get 13 days from the get-go, which is almost three weeks. After three years, that goes up to four weeks. In addition, everyone gets 13 sick days" ... which we know most people simply use as extra vacation days. So, a federal employee gets, from day one, 26 days off. Yet, that isn't enough. God forbid an individual actually USED their vacation or sick days for their own baby. No, they need MORE!

Federal employees already make significantly more than those in the private sector ( $77,143 versus $48,035) and when you add in their total compensation, the disparity goes through the roof.