Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 01-14-2019, 12:10 PM
Saint Cad is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: N of Denver & S of Sanity
Posts: 13,054

Is it true government workers are "not getting paid"?


What I mean is: are government workers (that are not furloughed) still earning income and just not receiving their paycheck currently and, when they do, they will get all of their back pay? OR are they not earning any money and any back pay they do get is at the discretion of Congress when the shutdown stops?

If the latter and they do not get their full backpay how is that legal? If they are required to work and end up not getting paid for those hours, isn't that slavery?
__________________
If all else fails, try S.C.E. to Aux.
  #2  
Old 01-14-2019, 12:17 PM
Riemann's Avatar
Riemann is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Santa Fe, NM, USA
Posts: 7,049
https://www.cnbc.com/2019/01/11/bill...-to-trump.html

Quote:
By a vote of 411-7, the House passed a bill requiring that all government workers receive retroactive pay after the partial shutdown ends.

Last edited by Riemann; 01-14-2019 at 12:18 PM.
  #3  
Old 01-14-2019, 12:30 PM
MrKnowItAll's Avatar
MrKnowItAll is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Cincinnati, Ohio
Posts: 1,701
Riemann has it, and from what I understand the Senate has passed it as well. It's just waiting on the president's signature.

Now, what if the bill had not been passed? Technically, none of us (working or not) are guaranteed to get paid. I'm not sure of the legal reasons why, but if the rest of the federal government's contract is as involved as mine, I'm sure they've got it covered in there somewhere. Fortunately there haven't been many shutdowns, and to date they all came with retroactive pay. I guess you can say that issue has yet to face an actual court challenge, so it's hard to say how it would go.
  #4  
Old 01-14-2019, 12:54 PM
Inigo Montoya's Avatar
Inigo Montoya is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: On the level, if inclined
Posts: 15,322
Quote:
Originally Posted by Saint Cad View Post
If they are required to work and end up not getting paid for those hours, isn't that slavery?
That was my initial thought as well, but I kind of walked it back. Working without pay is only one aspect of the slave lifestyle, and arguably not the most difficult to bear.
  #5  
Old 01-14-2019, 01:44 PM
MrKnowItAll's Avatar
MrKnowItAll is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Cincinnati, Ohio
Posts: 1,701
Right. For instance, we can leave the job anytime we want. Those of us who stay, even those who have to work, do so in faith that it will be okay in the long run. We don't have to, we just do. And so far it has worked out reasonably well. Pay gets delayed a bit for a while, but they've made good on it eventually. There's a lot of jobs in the private sector that would not be so good. (I know because I've had a couple of them.) Most of us don't draw huge paychecks, but security has a lot to be said for it.
  #6  
Old 01-14-2019, 02:18 PM
Spiderman's Avatar
Spiderman is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: somewhere East of there
Posts: 10,167
Federal employees have traditionally received back pay. Congress has signed legislation for this to happen this time. Traditionally, the President has signed that legislation; however, we don't have a traditional president at the current time (though Riemann's quote makes it looks pretty veto proof).

However, contractors typically only get paid for the hours they worked. Since they haven't been working the past few weeks, they're not going to get back pay.

Some of these are 'professional' services (engineers, etc.) & some are more blue-collar. There's no need for janitors to clean an unused office building every night. There's no need for food concessions at a shuttered national park, etc.
  #7  
Old 01-14-2019, 03:03 PM
Melbourne is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 4,678
What is the relationship of this to "volunteerism" ? I understand that there is a general prohibition on working for free for the US government in the expectation of getting paid latter, but I don't know the regulatory details?
  #8  
Old 01-14-2019, 03:05 PM
Chronos's Avatar
Chronos is online now
Charter Member
Moderator
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: The Land of Cleves
Posts: 81,781
There is no law against working without pay (at least, not in general), and in fact people working without pay is quite common in modern society. What the 13 Amendment outlawed was involuntary servitude, people working who don't want to be working (regardless of whether they happen to be paid or not.

That said, there is a law specifically for government workers forbidding them from working without pay. So all of the "essential" personnel who are still working are required to be paid eventually. Just, not now.

The question, then, is all those folks who are in the employ of the federal government but currently furloughed. Past precedent is that these folks would eventually get paid, too. But it's not required by law, and not guaranteed.
  #9  
Old 01-14-2019, 03:06 PM
DSYoungEsq is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: Indian Land, S Carolina
Posts: 14,150
It should be pointed out that the legislation linked above is nothing but a piece of feel-good optics; if the shut-down lasted months, and the only way to get an agreement on re-opening the government was to agree to pay them back only 80% of their back pay (for whatever reason), the Congress would just make new law making that legal.

Further, the legislation doesn't really change the discussion about whether or not the requirement that they work without receiving pay violates the 13th Amendment (though that's exactly what it is attempting to do). Telling me I MUST work now to keep my job, but that I will be paid at some unspecified point in the distant future is not significantly different from telling me I must work now to keep my job, but that I probably will be paid at some distant point in the future.
  #10  
Old 01-14-2019, 04:59 PM
Hari Seldon is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Trantor
Posts: 12,509
I wonder whether Trump will sign it or allow it to become law without his signature. I can't see him vetoing it and taking the chance of an override.
  #11  
Old 01-14-2019, 05:07 PM
Inigo Montoya's Avatar
Inigo Montoya is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: On the level, if inclined
Posts: 15,322
His head would asplode!
__________________
Y'all are just too damned serious. Lighten up.
  #12  
Old 01-14-2019, 05:56 PM
glowacks is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 2,061
Quote:
Originally Posted by DSYoungEsq View Post
Further, the legislation doesn't really change the discussion about whether or not the requirement that they work without receiving pay violates the 13th Amendment (though that's exactly what it is attempting to do). Telling me I MUST work now to keep my job, but that I will be paid at some unspecified point in the distant future is not significantly different from telling me I must work now to keep my job, but that I probably will be paid at some distant point in the future.
Emphasis mine. That's what distinguishes it from involuntary servitude. These people aren't working because they are absolutely required to. They simply want to keep their job and they are accruing the wages even though they are not being paid. If they wanted to walk out of their job, I'm almost certain they could. Not entirely certain because I'm no expert, but that's generally what the 13th amendment forbids.
  #13  
Old 01-14-2019, 06:02 PM
Omar Little's Avatar
Omar Little is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Within
Posts: 12,476
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hari Seldon View Post
I wonder whether Trump will sign it or allow it to become law without his signature. I can't see him vetoing it and taking the chance of an override.
He has already stated that he would sign the legislation into law.

https://www.ibj.com/articles/72028-s...ederal-workers
  #14  
Old 01-14-2019, 10:27 PM
DSYoungEsq is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: Indian Land, S Carolina
Posts: 14,150
Quote:
Originally Posted by glowacks View Post
Emphasis mine. That's what distinguishes it from involuntary servitude. These people aren't working because they are absolutely required to. They simply want to keep their job and they are accruing the wages even though they are not being paid. If they wanted to walk out of their job, I'm almost certain they could. Not entirely certain because I'm no expert, but that's generally what the 13th amendment forbids.
We shall see if you are correct or not, since there are three separate pending lawsuits which claim that the 13th Amendment is being violated.
  #15  
Old 01-14-2019, 10:43 PM
TSBG is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 2,541
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chronos View Post
There is no law against working without pay (at least, not in general), and in fact people working without pay is quite common in modern society. What the 13 Amendment outlawed was involuntary servitude, people working who don't want to be working (regardless of whether they happen to be paid or not.

That said, there is a law specifically for government workers forbidding them from working without pay. So all of the "essential" personnel who are still working are required to be paid eventually. Just, not now.

The question, then, is all those folks who are in the employ of the federal government but currently furloughed. Past precedent is that these folks would eventually get paid, too. But it's not required by law, and not guaranteed.
Not to get too far off point, but there are laws regulating unpaid labor--i.e., interns--at least in NY and CA. Broadly speaking, you have to be paid (in which case...it's a job not an internship?) or you have to receive credit from some accredited college or university, and in CA, you have to vouch that the intern would in fact take more resources from your team than if you had no intern at all (I'm paraphrasing). In the entertainment industry people are generally pretty scared of this because of a successful lawsuit over unpaid interns on the movie "Black Swan." The glossy NY magazines used to be famous for abusing unpaid and uncredited interns, not sure if that's still the case.

Back on point, the situation of federal workers who remain on the job but unpaid is actually slightly similar to every working stiff. I do a week of work , in the expectation of a paycheck next week, or in two weeks if that's the pay cycle. If all of a sudden payroll doesn't come, but it's promised down the road, I keep working, banking that it will arrive some day.

But...don't I have a cause of action for unpaid wages? What if the paycheck is suddenly 80% of what was promised?

I know the government operates under different rules than private business, hoping for enlightenment.

Also, I do know some people who were employed by scumbags who couldn't make payroll--they kept on going, hoping that next week they'd get something, and fearing that if they quit they'd get nothing. Of course in the end they were all running on air like Wile E. Coyote.
  #16  
Old 01-14-2019, 10:46 PM
Acsenray is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: U.S.A.
Posts: 34,917
To sum up:

1. There is no guarantee of back pay. Congress must enact back pay legislation and the president must sign it.

2. In the past, back pay has always been given.

3. This time, Congress had enacted back pay legislation overwhelmingly, and we must wait to see whether Trump signs it. Trump has previously expressed a callous attitude toward federal employees and he cancelled their next year’s raise. If he vetoes the bill, Congress can theoretically override his veto. Of course they could have done the same thing to prevent or end the shutdown in the first place, but McConnell refused to permit it.

4. Many jobs that you might think are done by federal employees are actually done by private contractors. They will not get back pay.

Last edited by Acsenray; 01-14-2019 at 10:47 PM.
  #17  
Old 01-15-2019, 02:04 AM
purplehorseshoe is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Texas, USA
Posts: 9,707
Quote:
Originally Posted by Riemann View Post
https://www.cnbc.com/2019/01/11/bill...-to-trump.html By a vote of 411-7, the House passed a bill requiring that all government workers receive retroactive pay after the partial shutdown ends.
Who are the seven assholes who voted AGAINST paying them, and what justification could they possibly offer?
__________________
I can haz sig line?
  #18  
Old 01-15-2019, 02:08 AM
Acsenray is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: U.S.A.
Posts: 34,917
https://thehill.com/homenews/house/4...rnment-workers

Quote:

But seven lawmakers all House Republicans opposed the measure. Those "no" votes came from Reps. Justin Amash (Mich.), Andy Biggs (Ariz.), Paul Gosar (Ariz.), Glen Grothman (Wis.), Thomas Massie (Ky.), Chip Roy (Texas) and Ted Yoho (Fla.).
...
Most of the House Republicans who voted against Friday's measure are members of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, a group that frequently dissents on legislation that provides federal spending.

Roy issued a statement on Friday explaining his vote.

"There is zero question that we should pay federal workers. I do not, however, support putting federal spending on autopilot indefinitely or authorizing future pay irrespective of the circumstances," he said. "I would gladly have voted to pay federal employees at the end of the current lapse, but we should do so methodically and always ensure we are managing the budget wisely."

  #19  
Old 01-15-2019, 05:39 AM
Broomstick's Avatar
Broomstick is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: NW Indiana
Posts: 27,764
Quote:
Originally Posted by TSBG View Post
But...don't I have a cause of action for unpaid wages? What if the paycheck is suddenly 80% of what was promised?
In the private world, yeah - I had that situation and took the business owner to court, won, and was awarded seven times the wages and court costs. (Winning wasn't guaranteed and collecting was not quite the same success....)

But suing an idiot small business owner is not the same as suing the US Federal government.
  #20  
Old 01-15-2019, 06:39 AM
Falchion is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 1,020
Quote:
Originally Posted by Saint Cad View Post
What I mean is: are government workers (that are not furloughed) still earning income and just not receiving their paycheck currently and, when they do, they will get all of their back pay? OR are they not earning any money and any back pay they do get is at the discretion of Congress when the shutdown stops?

If the latter and they do not get their full backpay how is that legal? If they are required to work and end up not getting paid for those hours, isn't that slavery?
My understanding (and apparently contrary to most of the answers here, so I'd be interested to see where I'm wrong) is that it's the former. As OPM explained in 2015, "Agencies will incur obligations to pay for services performed by excepted employees during a lapse in appropriations, and those employees will be paid after Congress passes and the President signs a new appropriation or continuing resolution." I'm not sure the legal basis for this (other than the general requirement that the agency fulfill its financial obligations), but if you figure that that furlough is the result of the Anti-Deficiency Act's bar on authorizing an obligation in excess of funding, it makes sense that agencies incur an obligation for "excepted" employees.

Of course, the agency incurs no obligation to those "non-excepted" employees who are furloughed (i.e., not working and not getting paid), but they have historically always received back pay. They are the primary target of the legislation discussed below about back pay, although the text of the bill includes excepted workers. The bill would serve (as I understand it) to permanently guarantee backpay for both excepted and non-excepted workers (by amending the Anti-Deficiency Act) in this and any future shutdown.

(The final category is employees who are "exempt" from the shutdown for a variety of reasons. They are both working and getting paid).

Last edited by Falchion; 01-15-2019 at 06:40 AM.
  #21  
Old 01-15-2019, 08:09 AM
Ravenman is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 25,412
Quote:
Originally Posted by TSBG View Post
But...don't I have a cause of action for unpaid wages? What if the paycheck is suddenly 80% of what was promised?

I know the government operates under different rules than private business, hoping for enlightenment.
The main difference between a contract for employment with a private company and a contract for employment with the Federal government as it pertains to this situation is Article I, section 9 of the Constitution, which reads: "No Money shall be drawn from the Treasury, but in Consequence of Appropriations made by Law."

The main effect here is that for the Federal government, a contractual obligation to an employee (or a contract for services, goods, etc) cannot override the Constitution -- BUT... the constitutional provision allows for Congress to write laws that provide "permanent and indefinite" authority for the Government to address various funding matters in case of a shutdown.

So as others have accurately described, exceptions exist to avoid a total and catastrophic shutdown. One key law, which doesn't actually apply in this situation but illustrates the law in play here, is the Feed and Forage Act. It is a permanent authority that allows the Government to sustain members of the military during periods where funding is unavailable. Therefore, troops shall continue to work during a shutdown, and the Feed and Forage Act complies with Art I sec 9 as a law allowing them to earn pay even if there are no appropriations available for that purpose.

Otherwise, in absence of such a law and similar laws, the constitutional presumption is that if no appropriations are available, the Government cannot make obligations that bind itself to future payment, because Congress has not approved the use of funds for such purposes.

It may also help to explain two critical parts of fiscal law: an obligation and an expenditure. An obligation is a contractual duty that the Government signs up to for payment of something, typically at a future date. An expenditure is the action of money leaving the Treasury to fulfill an obligation. So in other words, I sign a contract with you for me to buy an F-35 (an obligation) and as soon as you deliver it I give you the money I promised (the expenditure). Appropriations are actually the legal authority for the Government to make obligations, as opposed to the legal authority to make expenditures under obligations.

This is why employees are subject to furlough: the Government agreed to pay them a certain amount for their work. The unavailability of funds during a shutdown doesn't simply mean that the Government is prohibited from making expenditures for their paychecks: it means the Government is prohibited from letting them do work that with essentially indebt the Government to the employee; in other words, the Government can't make the obligation or the expenditure.
  #22  
Old 01-15-2019, 10:57 AM
Folacin is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: North of the River
Posts: 3,403
Quote:
Originally Posted by Omar Little View Post
He has already stated that he would sign the legislation into law.

https://www.ibj.com/articles/72028-s...ederal-workers
He also said he'd sign the CR that the Senate passed 100-0. Until the ink is dry, trust nothing that man says.
  #23  
Old 01-15-2019, 11:00 AM
Musicat is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: Sturgeon Bay, WI USA
Posts: 20,920
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrKnowItAll View Post
...Most of us don't draw huge paychecks, but security has a lot to be said for it.
For certain values of "security," sure.
  #24  
Old 01-15-2019, 11:06 AM
Whack-a-Mole's Avatar
Whack-a-Mole is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Chicago, IL USA
Posts: 20,543
Quote:
Originally Posted by Riemann View Post
Is this only for employees who actually worked without pay during the shutdown or ALL employees even if they stayed home?
__________________
"I did not mean that Conservatives are generally stupid; I meant, that stupid persons are generally Conservative. I believe that to be so obvious and undeniable a fact that I hardly think any hon. Gentleman will question it." ~John Stuart Mill
  #25  
Old 01-15-2019, 12:27 PM
AskNott is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Anderson, IN,USA
Posts: 14,877
Those federal employees, whether staying home or working without pay, still have bills to pay. Their landlords, lenders, utilities, and so on don't want to wait until after the shutdown to get paid. Employees are having to borrow money just to make ends meet. Local food banks, already straining to meet the need, are now seeing unpaid federal workers in their help lines.
__________________
Don't drive intexticated.
  #26  
Old 01-15-2019, 12:38 PM
Whack-a-Mole's Avatar
Whack-a-Mole is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Chicago, IL USA
Posts: 20,543
Quote:
Originally Posted by AskNott View Post
Those federal employees, whether staying home or working without pay, still have bills to pay. Their landlords, lenders, utilities, and so on don't want to wait until after the shutdown to get paid. Employees are having to borrow money just to make ends meet. Local food banks, already straining to meet the need, are now seeing unpaid federal workers in their help lines.
Sure but then the workers who are actually working may as well say to hell with it and stay at home. Why work if you know you will be paid anyway?
__________________
"I did not mean that Conservatives are generally stupid; I meant, that stupid persons are generally Conservative. I believe that to be so obvious and undeniable a fact that I hardly think any hon. Gentleman will question it." ~John Stuart Mill
  #27  
Old 01-15-2019, 12:44 PM
Omar Little's Avatar
Omar Little is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Within
Posts: 12,476
Quote:
Originally Posted by AskNott View Post
Those federal employees, whether staying home or working without pay, still have bills to pay. Their landlords, lenders, utilities, and so on don't want to wait until after the shutdown to get paid.
Well if they have a conventional mortgage or car loan with national bank, most likely they are being afforded the opportunity to defer their payments until the shutdown is over. Every bank website I've seen has had a notice to customers that are impacted by the government shutdown can call their client assistance program.

I also saw several reputable financial institutions offering (not extreme payday loan scenarios) low interest type loans with their most recent government paystub, that are not due until they receive their back pay.

So the market is stepping in to help.
  #28  
Old 01-15-2019, 12:48 PM
DrDeth is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: San Jose
Posts: 39,399
Quote:
Originally Posted by AskNott View Post
Those federal employees, whether staying home or working without pay, still have bills to pay. Their landlords, lenders, utilities, and so on don't want to wait until after the shutdown to get paid. Employees are having to borrow money just to make ends meet. Local food banks, already straining to meet the need, are now seeing unpaid federal workers in their help lines.
Yes, a good number of Feds are not getting paid.

Likely, they will get back pay- later.

Can you* work two months without a paycheck? Even if you think you will get paid later?

* as in any poster here.
  #29  
Old 01-15-2019, 12:52 PM
HurricaneDitka is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 12,626
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrDeth View Post
... Can you* work two months without a paycheck? Even if you think you will get paid later?

* as in any poster here.
Yes, I can. I would hope at least some people would have an emergency fund of 3-6 months of expenses.
  #30  
Old 01-15-2019, 12:56 PM
Omar Little's Avatar
Omar Little is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Within
Posts: 12,476
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrDeth View Post
Can you* work two months without a paycheck? Even if you think you will get paid later?

* as in any poster here.
Yes
  #31  
Old 01-15-2019, 12:59 PM
Ravenman is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 25,412
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrDeth View Post
Can you* work two months without a paycheck? Even if you think you will get paid later?
Whether a single individual can is pretty much irrelevant. The median amount in an American's savings account is $4,500, so assuming that a government employee makes roughly the same financial decisions as the average American, quite a few people will be in trouble.

I overheard some security guards talking just before the shutdown about how they were starting to charge everything on their credit cards, instead of using debit cards or cash. "You can't pay rent with a credit card!" said one. I hope that's working out for them...
  #32  
Old 01-15-2019, 01:08 PM
HurricaneDitka is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 12,626
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ravenman View Post
Whether a single individual can is pretty much irrelevant. The median amount in an American's savings account is $4,500, so assuming that a government employee makes roughly the same financial decisions as the average American, quite a few people will be in trouble.

I overheard some security guards talking just before the shutdown about how they were starting to charge everything on their credit cards, instead of using debit cards or cash. "You can't pay rent with a credit card!" said one. I hope that's working out for them...
HuffPost - Federal Employees Earn 50% More Than The Private Workforce

That was from a few years ago, but I doubt your "assuming that a government employee makes roughly the same financial decisions as the average American" is a valid assumption.
  #33  
Old 01-15-2019, 01:20 PM
Ravenman is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 25,412
Quote:
Originally Posted by HurricaneDitka View Post
HuffPost - Federal Employees Earn 50% More Than The Private Workforce

That was from a few years ago, but I doubt your "assuming that a government employee makes roughly the same financial decisions as the average American" is a valid assumption.
Ok, bring data. This is GQ.
  #34  
Old 01-15-2019, 01:29 PM
DrDeth is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: San Jose
Posts: 39,399
Quote:
Originally Posted by HurricaneDitka View Post
HuffPost - Federal Employees Earn 50% More Than The Private Workforce

That was from a few years ago, but I doubt your "assuming that a government employee makes roughly the same financial decisions as the average American" is a valid assumption.
That's from the Huffpost and is doubtful at best and dreadfully biased.

More or less, in the same jobs, Feds are paid less, but it's made back by good benefits and job security. It's just that there arent many Part time minimum wage job in Government, thus over all, comparing all employees, the feds get more. Sure. Or if you compared FT workers with PT workers- not surprisingly, FT workers earn more.


https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/...=.982a24464ddd
Federal employee salaries on average lag behind those of similar private-sector workers by just under 32 percent, a pay advisory council has said, while also deciding to reassess how it annually reaches similar conclusions, which are at odds with the findings of other pay comparisons.

Last edited by DrDeth; 01-15-2019 at 01:30 PM.
  #35  
Old 01-15-2019, 01:38 PM
Whack-a-Mole's Avatar
Whack-a-Mole is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Chicago, IL USA
Posts: 20,543
Quote:
Originally Posted by HurricaneDitka View Post
That was from a few years ago, but I doubt your "assuming that a government employee makes roughly the same financial decisions as the average American" is a valid assumption.
Nearly 80% of Americans live paycheck-to-paycheck. Given that it is probably a safe bet that most federal employees also live paycheck-to-paycheck.
__________________
"I did not mean that Conservatives are generally stupid; I meant, that stupid persons are generally Conservative. I believe that to be so obvious and undeniable a fact that I hardly think any hon. Gentleman will question it." ~John Stuart Mill
  #36  
Old 01-15-2019, 01:41 PM
Whack-a-Mole's Avatar
Whack-a-Mole is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Chicago, IL USA
Posts: 20,543
Is health insurance also suspended while the government is shut down?
__________________
"I did not mean that Conservatives are generally stupid; I meant, that stupid persons are generally Conservative. I believe that to be so obvious and undeniable a fact that I hardly think any hon. Gentleman will question it." ~John Stuart Mill
  #37  
Old 01-15-2019, 01:47 PM
AskNott is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Anderson, IN,USA
Posts: 14,877
When I was working, I probably could have gone without a paycheck for two months. That was because I had been fortunate and somewhat smart. We had decided not to have children, which saved a lot of money. My investments had done well, so I had a cushion to fall back on. I had a good-paying job, and I live in a city with a low cost of living. If I lived in the DC area, it would have been a lot harder to get by. The house I live in now would have easily sold for 3 times as much if it were within a commute of DC.
__________________
Don't drive intexticated.
  #38  
Old 01-15-2019, 01:47 PM
HurricaneDitka is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 12,626
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ravenman View Post
Ok, bring data. This is GQ.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Whack-a-Mole View Post
Nearly 80% of Americans live paycheck-to-paycheck. Given that it is probably a safe bet that most federal employees also live paycheck-to-paycheck.
I'd be surprised if there were many surveys specifically of federal employees along the lines of "how much do you have in your savings account". My post was merely a caution about making assumptions along the lines of:

"Group A has a median income of X. Group B has a median income of Y. Group A and B probably have similar median balances in their savings account."

I can spot the flaw in that reasoning even if I don't know the balance of the median federal employee's savings account.

Last edited by HurricaneDitka; 01-15-2019 at 01:48 PM.
  #39  
Old 01-15-2019, 01:53 PM
Whack-a-Mole's Avatar
Whack-a-Mole is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Chicago, IL USA
Posts: 20,543
Quote:
Originally Posted by HurricaneDitka View Post
I'd be surprised if there were many surveys specifically of federal employees along the lines of "how much do you have in your savings account". My post was merely a caution about making assumptions along the lines of:

"Group A has a median income of X. Group B has a median income of Y. Group A and B probably have similar median balances in their savings account."

I can spot the flaw in that reasoning even if I don't know the balance of the median federal employee's savings account.
If we know that nearly 80% of Americans live paycheck-to-paycheck it is safe to assume that federal workers are not different from other workers and probably figure into that 80% the same as non-federal workers.

Unless you can show that federal workers are substantially different from non-federal workers in some respect that bears on this.
__________________
"I did not mean that Conservatives are generally stupid; I meant, that stupid persons are generally Conservative. I believe that to be so obvious and undeniable a fact that I hardly think any hon. Gentleman will question it." ~John Stuart Mill
  #40  
Old 01-15-2019, 01:53 PM
Steve MB is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Northern VA
Posts: 13,127
Quote:
Originally Posted by HurricaneDitka View Post
HuffPost - Federal Employees Earn 50% More Than The Private Workforce

That was from a few years ago, but I doubt your "assuming that a government employee makes roughly the same financial decisions as the average American" is a valid assumption.
Is this another bit of dumbassery, comparing "large percentage of grunt minimum-wagers" oranges to "mostly specialized-skill white-collar" apples?

Oh, it's HD. Of course it's another bit of dumbassery.
__________________
The Internet: Nobody knows if you're a dog. Everybody knows if you're a jackass.
  #41  
Old 01-15-2019, 01:55 PM
Steve MB is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Northern VA
Posts: 13,127
Quote:
Originally Posted by HurricaneDitka View Post
My post was merely a caution about making assumptions along the lines of:

"Group A has a median income of X. Group B has a median income of Y.
You forgot the "swallow all liquids and put down the cat" warning between the post I quoted just above and this one.
__________________
The Internet: Nobody knows if you're a dog. Everybody knows if you're a jackass.
  #42  
Old 01-15-2019, 01:57 PM
DrDeth is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: San Jose
Posts: 39,399
Quote:
Originally Posted by Whack-a-Mole View Post
Is health insurance also suspended while the government is shut down?
Not that I know of.
  #43  
Old 01-15-2019, 01:58 PM
DrDeth is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: San Jose
Posts: 39,399
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve MB View Post
Is this another bit of dumbassery, comparing "large percentage of grunt minimum-wagers" oranges to "mostly specialized-skill white-collar" apples?

Oh, it's HD. Of course it's another bit of dumbassery.
Let's be kind. Oh, it's Huffpost. Of course it's another bit of dumbassery.

But as to your first point- yes, that is exactly what was being done.
  #44  
Old 01-15-2019, 01:58 PM
HurricaneDitka is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 12,626
Quote:
Originally Posted by Whack-a-Mole View Post
If we know that nearly 80% of Americans live paycheck-to-paycheck it is safe to assume that federal workers are not different from other workers and probably figure into that 80% the same as non-federal workers.

Unless you can show that federal workers are substantially different from non-federal workers in some respect that bears on this.
I have shown that they have substantially different income from non-federal workers. Do you think income might have some bearing on whether one lives paycheck-to-paycheck or not (or on how much one has in savings)?

Or do you think the same percentage of one-percenters and those below the poverty line are living paycheck-to-paycheck?

Last edited by HurricaneDitka; 01-15-2019 at 01:59 PM.
  #45  
Old 01-15-2019, 02:02 PM
Ravenman is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 25,412
Quote:
Originally Posted by HurricaneDitka View Post
"Group A has a median income of X. Group B has a median income of Y. Group A and B probably have similar median balances in their savings account."

I can spot the flaw in that reasoning even if I don't know the balance of the median federal employee's savings account.
Can you think of a reason why government employees making the same salaries would have substantially different patterns of savings than their private sector counterparts? Because we know pretty well the savings rates of people at various incomes.
  #46  
Old 01-15-2019, 02:06 PM
HurricaneDitka is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 12,626
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ravenman View Post
Can you think of a reason why government employees making the same salaries would have substantially different patterns of savings than their private sector counterparts? Because we know pretty well the savings rates of people at various incomes.
Your post (#31) wasn't comparing people "making the same salaries". <--- that's the whole point!

You were comparing the median American with the median government employee. And those two have substantially different incomes.

Last edited by HurricaneDitka; 01-15-2019 at 02:09 PM.
  #47  
Old 01-15-2019, 02:12 PM
Ravenman is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 25,412
Quote:
Originally Posted by HurricaneDitka View Post
Your post (#31) wasn't comparing people "making the same salaries". <--- that's the whole point!

You were comparing the median American with the median government employee. And those two have substantially different incomes.
Was your point to nitpick my post, or contribute useful information?
  #48  
Old 01-15-2019, 02:15 PM
HurricaneDitka is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 12,626
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ravenman View Post
Was your point to nitpick my post, or contribute useful information?
Contribute useful information. The whole central idea of that post has a gaping hole in its logic. It's an error that was repeated by Whack-a-Mole in post #39 (and somewhat in #35).

Last edited by HurricaneDitka; 01-15-2019 at 02:16 PM.
  #49  
Old 01-15-2019, 02:22 PM
Ravenman is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 25,412
Quote:
Originally Posted by HurricaneDitka View Post
Contribute useful information. The whole central idea of that post has a gaping hole in its logic. It's an error that was repeated by Whack-a-Mole in post #39 (and somewhat in #35).
And you believe your cite was a fair and accurate representation of all the various studies that have occurred on comparing public and private sector pay?
  #50  
Old 01-15-2019, 02:28 PM
HurricaneDitka is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 12,626
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ravenman View Post
And you believe your cite was a fair and accurate representation of all the various studies that have occurred on comparing public and private sector pay?
I believe "all the various studies that have occurred on comparing public and private sector pay", when looked at in the aggregate, show a substantial difference in compensation for the average federal employee vs the average American. Do you agree?

(Note: I understand why that is. You don't need to tell me about "grunt minimum-wagers" vs "mostly specialized-skill white-collar" jobs. I already get that. It's irrelevant to the point I was making.)

Last edited by HurricaneDitka; 01-15-2019 at 02:30 PM.
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:55 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

Send questions for Cecil Adams to: cecil@straightdope.com

Send comments about this website to: webmaster@straightdope.com

Terms of Use / Privacy Policy

Advertise on the Straight Dope!
(Your direct line to thousands of the smartest, hippest people on the planet, plus a few total dipsticks.)

Copyright 2018 STM Reader, LLC.

 
Copyright © 2017