By Rand Paul
Obama acts as though we no longer have a Constitution
Independent voices from the TWT Communities
As politicians of both parties ride through the country Paul Revere-like in their warning about the dire consequences of the looming automatic spending cuts coming with sequestration, a lot of Americans are worried that essential government services will see a dangerous reduction in their operating resources. Yet there is a way to cut substantial amounts of federal spending that will have zero effect on public services. Simply get rid of federal employees who do no work for the federal government.
Unions were formed to bring representation to companies that otherwise were accountable to no one but their profit-making owners. But most union workers today work for government, not companies, even though there are five times as many private-sector employees overall, according to recently collected data.
Working for the government may sound like a sweet gig — regular hours, generous benefits, job security — but it turns out that it's not how things look from inside the bureaucratic bubble.
When Congress decided to take over airport security, it was never about safety. That became clear on Friday when Transportation Security Administration (TSA) screeners formally agreed to a contract that will add 45,000 dues-paying members to the ranks of the American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE).
The union representing nearly 45,000 airport screeners has reached a first-ever collective bargaining agreement with the Transportation Security Administration.
Bed bugs have infested the vital statistics department of the D.C. Department of Health, according to emails obtained by The Washington Times that show DOH officials have been slow to eradicate the problem.
Despite a D.C. law that requires a social worker's license to perform "psychosocial evaluation and assessment, counseling, and consultation" for those who work with youth offenders, only five of more than 30 case managers in the Department of Youth Rehabilitation Services possess such a license.
Buoyed by generous benefit packages, federal workers earn significantly better compensation than similarly educated workers in the private sector, according to a report released Monday from Congress' chief scorekeeper that threatens to reignite at the national level last year's state battles over public-employee rights.
More than 77,000 federal government employees throughout the country — including computer operators, more than 5,000 air traffic controllers, 22 librarians and one interior designer — earned more than the governors of the states in which they work.
Appearing in Washington for the first time since announcing his presidential bid, former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty said salaries of federal employees should be frozen temporarily until they fall in line with the earning levels of their private sector counterparts.
An escape from the District's juvenile detention facility that involved the brutal beating of a corrections officer has caused labor leaders and city officials to confront issues threatening to derail the confirmation of Mayor Vincent C. Gray's pick to head the city's troubled juvenile justice agency, union officials say.
The country's largest federal employees union sued the government Friday, arguing it is unconstitutional to make millions of workers report for duty during a shutdown since there is no guarantee they will be paid later for the time they work.
Weeks after President Obama took office, John Gage, the head of the largest union for federal workers in the country, gave a speech hailing the new administration as a champion for "transparency, accountability and good government."
A coalition of union leaders on Tuesday rejected Mayor Vincent C. Gray's pick to head the District's troubled Department of Youth Rehabilitation Services and criticized the mayor for abandoning campaign promises to give labor a voice in his administration.
As Washington and the nation brace for a possible government shutdown next week, federal agencies are scrambling to determine how many "essential" workers will stay on the job.