Roll Call: DoD Civilian Furloughs, Week 1 of 11

Furlough (unpaid) one day a week for 11 weeks. 20% cut on the DoD civilian labor force paychecks.

I realize cuts need to happen because of our deficit spending. I am not going to complain about furloughs because I am happy to have a good job that I like. I'm also vacationing in Florida right now, so I'm not going to by a hypocrite. I also had enough money to buy a "Bros Before Furloughs" t-shirt for $25.

But here is what pisses me off and what should piss of the taxpayer: To save the DoD money, we have put civilian DoD employees on furlough. DoD employees whose jobs are to save taxpayer money by managing, monitoring, auditing, negotiating, etc. $100s of Billions of DoD contracts and services. So they didn't really cut DoD spending, just the amount of oversight and control over those $100s of billions. Brilliant.
$70 million in IRS bonuses!!!!

Yeah, I'd be pissed, but not because of the furloughs themselves. It would be about the selective nature of them while the criminals at the IRS and EPA continue ****ing America in the ass.
Its not really selective at this point. The cuts have to happen by law and they aren't going to cut furlough soldiers. Unless Congress restores funding and makes logical cuts, its going to be worse in 2014.
I hear what you are saying and I agree for the most part but it is not entirely accurate to characterize all of those furloughed as being additive to the efficiency of how the DoD executes its budget. There are a few whose total disappearance from the workplace would equate to a runner removing ankle weights i.e. I am stronger for having trained with them but can run faster without them. In fairness, there are more than a few in uniform who also fit that description.

The real damage to the DoD from the furlough of the really committed civilians is that many of them normally work far more than a 40 hour week to begin with. For some of the best civil servant I have worked with the rigid enforcement of 8 hour work days and enforced denial of access to email on furlough days and weekends (the CIO is freezing access to email on furlough days and we are waiting to see if this includes weekends rather than asking directly) amounts not to a 20% reduction in their output but closer to 30% of their output, much of which they performed after normal working hours.
Make the organization more efficient. Stack-rank everyone and terminate the lowest contributors. Defer some initiatives. Everyone thinks their job is important...but some are less important than others. This exercise occurs in the private sector all the time. With over 700k civilian employees and over 3MM total including active duty and reserve military, I guarantee you there's some fat to cut. If military personnel are off limits, I bet some of them would appreciate the real-world job training that they'd get by filling positions formally occupied by a civilian employee.

Unfortunately, leaders in the executive branch aren't interested in long-term cost cutting so they simply furlough everyone (over an 11 week period...not sure why they didn't spread furlough days over an entire year) while hoping that congress will undo the sequester and life can go on with no real changes.

Could also look into moving positions located overseas back to the a lot of foreign location uplifts, travel, expenses, etc. Just one other simple idea that the private sector would evaluate in the first minute if a cost reduction initiative and I've not read anywhere that the government even attempted this. It all gets back to the gov not actually wanting to make any structural changes to save money.

[This message has been edited by Lostinla07 (edited 7/8/2013 5:47p).]
Just want to clarify that I sympathize with government's unfortunate that our country's leadership is so poor that we need mandatory across the board reductions to spending increases to take the first step in slowing the growth of government spending. It's not that I think all/most federal employees are wasteful...but I do think the bulk of federal programs are bloated and inefficient...including many in Defense. Don't get me started on the other departments...
and they aren't going to cut furlough soldiers.


Not as part of sequestration but DoD will be making additional cuts to troop strength beyond what has already been announced. The service chiefs have little choice in the matter. Over two thirds of the DoD budget is consumed by personnel costs to include not only pay and entitlements but all of the community services that Congress has provided as a show of goodwill to the troops e.g. The Defense Commissaries spend $1.8 billion a year to provide a wide selection of food to troops in CONUS and to fly good old American brands overseas. Every attempt by the JCS to scale back or close DeCA is overruled by Congress (commissaries are a populars jobs program).

The growing pension commitments to military retirees (of whom I will be one sometime in the coming five years) are eating the DoD. The service chiefs recommended a 1.0 % pay raise for CY 14 since inflation has been low and military pay increases over the past decade have surpassed the average in the private sector. That was not good enough for Congress which included a 1.8% pay raise for both the house and senate bills. If 0.8% does not sound like much compound that annually over 20 plus years and the difference in pension obligations is huge.

The DoD also gets caught in the middle of pissing contests between congress when they decide to fund a new weapon system (JSF) while simulataneously extending the one it was supposed to replace (F/A-18) because the SASC member in whose district to old system is built does not want to suffer the consequences of the job losses in her district.

Yeah, there will be troop cuts to come. You can count on it.
Dont forget $100M trip to Africa.

I don't feel bad at all for the GS's that I work with that are going to be furloughed. They are either O-5, or O-6 retiree's who did 25+ years in the Navy.
Yeah, that's pretty common in Civil Service - throughout all agencies.[/sarcasm]
The problem with your analogy, Ulysses, is that it isn't just the ankle weights that disappear - it is the legs, too.

We face no furloughs, mainly because we have left lots of positions unfilled. We have non-IT folks filling in, and some piss poor managers doing twice as bad a job filling 2 rolls.
Did people not understand what "sequester" meant when they demanded it?
Who "demanded" it, 8T2? It was OBAMA'S idea to begin with, and when crunch time came, he reneged on an agreement with the House to stop it from happening.

Not sure anyone DEMANDED it, but the blame falls squarely on Obama, not the House. Bob Woodward reported on it - look it up.

[This message has been edited by NormanAg (edited 7/8/2013 7:08p).]
It was Obama's idea. But lots of people on here were screaming that we should drive the car off the cliff.
Yeah, texags made it happen! Are you serious?
Don't worry, Obama's trip to Africa was not affected.
Don't worry, Obama's trip to Africa was not affected.

Did people not understand what "sequester" meant when they demanded it?

I don't think anyone was demanding sequester. I will own up to supporting uniform across the board budget cuts for all federal spending including entitlements and "non-discretionary" spending as opposed to the DoD centered sequester.

The sequester is only $44 billion dollars of the federal budget that the Obama administration is trying desperately to make seem like a deep and crippling cut. It is a serious annoyance to the DoD and disruptive to many civil service employees who are affected by it but in terms of the actual federal budget it is about 1.2% cut, that's barely enough to operate the entire federal government for 4.5 days. The sequestration cuts are just focused in a few federal departments that are hostage to the gridlock in Congress so to those affected it feels like a much bigger cut.
If I have to take a pay cut, then every welfare mooch, every food stamp slug, and every obama phone user should have to take a cut also...
If I have to take a pay cut, then every welfare mooch, every food stamp slug, and every obama phone user should have to take a cut also...

Odd you are outraged against them not the mooching muslims.

Before I have to take a pay cut, then every welfare mooch, every food stamp slug, and every obama phone user should have to take a cut...

This is terrible news to me.
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