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WP: Federal Furloughs Likely To Exceed 1 Million

More absurd fear-mongering about the sequester from the Washington Post:

Furloughs likely would exceed 1 million; feds feel ‘undervalued, unappreciated’

By Joe Davidson | February 11, 2013

On the day President Obama delivers his annual address to Congress, the state of the federal workforce is precarious. It is precarious because employees are worried about their paychecks when Uncle Sam is in danger of not fully making his payroll. They are worried that budget cuts could diminish their ability to serve citizens and fulfill agency missions.

Yes, that has got to be keeping them up at night.

They are worried about being disregarded and disrespected.

Does this mean we are going to be getting lawsuits for mental suffering?

The latest source of worry came Friday when the White House again warned that across-the-board budget cuts known as the sequester would cause “hundreds of thousands” of furloughs. That repeated a similar warning in a Jan. 14 memo from Jeffrey Zients, deputy director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).

Yet, with the Pentagon saying that 800,000 employees in the Defense Department alone could be furloughed, expect the government-wide total to well exceed 1 million.

None of this is even remotely true. And these fear mongering lies are coming from the Obama administration. They are even having their managers lie to the federal workers, in order to get them to flood Congress with their unfounded fears, in order to fight sequestration. Which, lest we forget, was Obama’s idea.

On March 1, federal agencies will begin implementing cuts over seven months amounting to 13 percent of the Defense budget and 9 percent of other programs, unless Congress stops the automatic reductions

Even an earlier article in the self-same Washington Post from February 8th, only claims that: "The Pentagon budget would face an immediate 7.3 percent cut and domestic discretionary programs would be cut by more than 5 percent."

And that number too is probably wildly inflated. More importantly, both of these numbers are probably less than the rate of growth would have been thanks to baseline budgeting. So there will be little if any real cuts.

Furloughs are unpaid leave days. The number of days could vary among agencies. Whatever the number, it means less pay for federal workers who already have had their basic pay rates frozen for more than two years…

When was the last time federal workers were not reimbursed for ‘unpaid leave’? Hint: never. Furloughs are at worst paid vacations.

Still, isn’t it instructive see how far the Washington Post will go to whip up a frenzy about non cuts and free paid vacations?

This article was posted by Steve Gilbert on Tuesday, February 12th, 2013. Comments are currently closed.

3 Responses to “WP: Federal Furloughs Likely To Exceed 1 Million”

  1. captstubby

    They are worried about being disregarded and disrespected.

    do you mean like American taxpayers are at the hands of…
    IRS,EPA, OHSA, Dept. of Energy, Homeland Security,UPS, Senators,
    hundreds of alphabet soup agency’s,
    or tens of thousands of unelected bureaucrats?

  2. A Macy

    The numbers are not inflated. The 7.3% and 5% numbers relate to the total cut against the annual FY13 budget (Oct 2012-Sep 2013). However, there has been no budget due to all the polticking and so DoD could NOT CUT. So if the cuts go into effect on 1 Mar 2013, what was a 7.3% cut over 12mos, is now a cut over only 7mos (Mar 13- Sep 13)…and therefore DoD must cut almost twice as deep (13% and 9%) to get to the 7.3% and 5% off the annual budget (Oct 12- Sep 13). You can’t cut retroactively…..

    The comment on prior furloughs is true but not really comparable. The last furlough was in 1995 and that was when all money ran out (CRA expired with no appropriations buill) and there was a government-wide shutdown. Some employees worked (unpaid) and others were furloughed (also unpaid). It wasn’t until April 1996 that Congress approved funding backpay (0% interest) and they did approve back pay for those who were furloughed as well as those who worked. Congress did not have to do this. They only had to dop back pay for whoever actually worked during the furlough. This time is unprecedented because we are not facing a Government-wide shutdown…there is still money just less of it. The furloughs will be staggered and Congress has already gone on record saying they will not approve back-pay.

    Not sure what basis you have for saying the $1M fed could be furloughed is untrue and fear mongering. DoD does have 800,000 civilian employees. The rest of the fed must have at least 200,000. So if it’s not the numbers, is it the likelihood?? If you were facing a 20% cut in pay and knew that many agencies had already sent out the 30-day notice of furlough..would you not have some fear??

    • Steve

      “If you were facing a 20% cut in pay and knew that many agencies had already sent out the 30-day notice of furlough..would you not have some fear?”

      Again, when has anyone in the history of federal employees ever been furloughed without pay? When has anyone gotten any cut in pay, let alone a 20% cut?

      It has never happened, and (unfortunately) it never will.




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