FCW Insider

Blog archive

Why are federal employees the latest scapegoat?

Why is the federal employee suddenly a scapegoat?

For the past few months, we've been hearing a litany of complaints: Federal workers are overpaid, lazy and too numerous, come the cries from some quarters.

None of these claims hold up well under scrutiny. The Bureau of Labor Statistics says that federal employees are paid less than their private-sector candidates in many jobs. No credible studies really call the capabilities or dedication of federal employees into question. And whether the workforce needs to be reduced seems to be more a matter of opinion than fact.

But the current political climate holds some clues. Conservative candidates won elections last year on platforms of drastically cutting federal spending, and while federal employees don't really account for a whole lot of that, the cliche of the overpaid and incompetent bureaucrat plays well with some constituencies.

We're hopeful that, over time, the spending-cutters will find new and better-chosen targets for their efforts. Meanwhile, federal employees will endure a freeze on raises and attempts  to legislate a smaller federal workforce. It's happened before, and we're confident that they'll do just fine.

Posted on Jan 12, 2011 at 7:25 PM


Reader Comments

Please post your comments here. Comments are moderated, so they may not appear immediately after submitting. We will not post comments that we consider abusive or off-topic.

Please type the letters/numbers you see above

What is your e-mail address?

My e-mail address is:

Do you have a password?

Forgot your password? Click here
close

Trending

  • Dive into our Contract Award database

    In an exclusive for WT Insider members, we are collecting all of the contract awards we cover into a database that you can sort by contractor, agency, value and other parameters. You can also download it into a spreadsheet. Our databases track awards back to 2013. Read More

  • Navigating the trends and issues of 2016 Nick Wakeman

    In our latest WT Insider Report, we pull together our best advice, insights and reporting on the trends and issues that will shape the market in 2016 and beyond. Read More

contracts DB

Washington Technology Daily

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.