Income Redistribution, one $150,000 Federal Job at a Time

by the Left Coast Rebel

Via Memeorandum, disgusting stats from USA Today (a surprising source) on the incredible growth in pay for Federal employees, especially since the election of The One and an effective doubling of six figure + Federal jobs during the last two years, or the, "worst economy since the Great Depression."

I can't think of a more effective leading indicator of the socialization of the United States than literally tens of thousands of $150,000 range Federal jobs:

The number of federal workers earning $150,000 or more a year has soared tenfold in the past five years and doubled since President Obama took office, a USA TODAY analysis finds.

The fast-growing pay of federal employees has captured the attention of fiscally conservative Republicans who won control of the U.S. House of Representatives in last week's elections. Already, some lawmakers are planning to use the lame-duck session that starts Monday to challenge the president's plan to give a 1.4% across-the-board pay raise to 2.1 million federal workers.

Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, who will head the panel overseeing federal pay, says he wants a pay freeze and prefers a 10% pay cut. "It's stunning when you see what's happened to federal compensation," he says. "Every metric shows we're heading in the wrong direction."

National Treasury Employees Union President Colleen Kelley counters that the proposed raise "is a modest amount and should be implemented" to help make salaries more comparable with those in the private sector.

Federal salaries have grown robustly in recent years, according to a USA TODAY analysis of Office of Personnel Management data. Key findings:

Government-wide raises. Top-paid staff have increased in every department and agency. The Defense Department had nine civilians earning $170,000 or more in 2005, 214 when Obama took office and 994 in June.

•Long-time workers thrive. The biggest pay hikes have gone to employees who have been with the government for 15 to 24 years. Since 2005, average salaries for this group climbed 25% compared with a 9% inflation rate.

•Physicians rewarded. Medical doctors at veterans hospitals, prisons and elsewhere earn an average of $179,500, up from $111,000 in 2005.

Federal workers earning $150,000 or more make up 3.9% of the workforce, up from 0.4% in 2005.

Since 2000, federal pay and benefits have increased 3% annually above inflation compared with 0.8% for private workers, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis. Members of Congress earn $174,000, up from $141,300 in 2000, an increase below the rate of inflation.

Jessica Klement, government affairs director at the Federal Managers Association, says the government's official pay analysis shows that federal workers earn less than private workers for comparable jobs. Still, she says, managers are willing to give up next year's raise: "If it will help the country bounce back, they're willing to make the sacrifice."

Recently I celebrated a friend's birthday party with a "guy's night out" gig downtown. I met my friend's father, a financial adviser in the Bay Area. We chatted and as things often do these days, the topic drifted toward the economy and the politics involved. "Why even bother in the job market, today, young people should just get government jobs, that's where the pay is going to be," said my friend's father.

I thought about his comment that night and pondered just how the entrepreneurial spirit of this nation has been betrayed on a monumental, diabolical level. His admittance that government jobs are 'where the money is' is beyond the pale and sadly true.

Imagine that the Community Agitator in Chief has doubled the number of $150,000 pay Federal jobs?

Bonus: Rep. Jason Chaffetz Talks Federal Pay on Kudlow :

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