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Obama: "Nothing More Important" Than A Government Job

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posted on May, 12 2011 @ 02:25 PM
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reply to post by Janky Red
 


Because he made the comment in the context of responding to a woman's statement about losing a government job, thats how. He was talking about government employment. In making a comment about serving the American people, how else can you infer that he is not speaking directly about the value of government jobs? He specifically stated that he was frustrated by the fact that folks don't value public sector jobs the same as private sector jobs. How else are his comments to be intrepreted?

Been a lot of talk in the thread about how his comments are being manipulated. How? What do you think he said?




posted on May, 12 2011 @ 02:48 PM
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Originally posted by dolphinfan
What do you think he said?


He said:

"Let me just first of all say that workers like you, for the federal, state, and local governments, are so important for our vital services. And it frustrates me sometimes when people talk about 'government jobs' as if somehow those are worth less than private sector jobs. I think there is nothing more important than working on behalf of the American people."

That's what he said and that's what I think he said.



posted on May, 12 2011 @ 02:49 PM
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reply to post by ChrisCrikey
 


Have you ever worked for the government?. Many government jobs are make work and as such only create needless work to keep busy.

I spent over 20 years in the private sector in the IT industry. My company went out of business and I took a job at the state. Here are a few things I observed in the 9 months I worked there. I left because I could not take the environment and what simply amounts to waste.

- the team I managed at the state was roughly 60% over staffed vs. the private sector
- despite the over staffing, the work was of far less quality
- I was told by team members not to give them work. that they were civil service and would do what they wanted to do. They might do the assignment if they felt like it. One gent (around 50) actually told me "listen hot shot, I've been collecting a pay check here for almost 30 years and I'll do what I want". This dude was only about 5 years older than me.
- In speaking with my boss about the above I was told simply to not give them anything to so. It was not worth the pain and suffering to deal with the union, and that I would wind up spending more time dealing with that than doing my job.
- deadlines are out the _ A project that would take 6 months in the private sector took well over a year with the state
- third party providers were not held accountable for work and absolutely did work of a level of quality that ensured rework and additonal fees. In the private sector, they would be fired, held accountable, period. No body managing these contractors seemed to care.
- the talented folks that were there, those who actually did the work hated their jobs. They hated them because there was little if any merit pay. Every one got the same raise regardless of skills, work effort or dedication. Not only that, when there was a cut-back it was based on seniority so the good folks were the ones to get cut.
- despite the fact that training was available to all team members, over half of them never took training. They refused to, so their skills were not updated (on purpose) making it impractical, if not impossible to give them any assignments with current technology. If you needed some COBOL code, they might have been good, if they chose to do the work
- the turnover was extremely high among the talented staff. They did not want to be on a team of losers
- the amount of worthless paperwork and triple checking of forms was actually funny

there is no way that you would have these folks working for your company, no way. There is no way that they would survive 6 months in the private sector and probably no way based on their attitudes and skills that they would get hired in the first place

After about 9 months of trying to get something done and to turn the team around, I left and went back to the private sector. I got tired of my boss telling be to "get with the culture" and ask me why I was still in the office at 5:30 and that I was working too many hours and that that schedule was counter-culture. I went to the 7-3 schedule - (this was a well paying salaried position) and used the afternoon to get a job.

Anyone who wants to suggest that there is no difference between the quality and contribution of employees in the public or private sectors has not worked in both. To suggest that the public should be paying for "job security" is nonsense. Does that mean that there are not critical functions within the government? No. Does that mean that there are not extremely talented and dedicated folks who choose government service and take less compensation out of a desire to serve their communities? No. There are tons of them. Does that mean that the average government worker is "vital" to society as the President suggests? Absolutely not.

I stand by my earlier comment. If half of the folks who work for the government simply stopped coming to work tomorrow, nobody would notice.



posted on May, 12 2011 @ 02:50 PM
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Originally posted by Realms

Originally posted by Tyrson
The majority of government workers are redundant, as or most government programs, government workers are also vastly overpaid for the trivial jobs they perform.


That I will agree on. The annual salary is alarming!


Another false statement. If you want to compare a fed salary to a comparable position in the private sector, I actually make less than I could. Also, there are not any jobs that require less than a Masters Degree in my agency anymore. I worked hard to get the job I have and I don't apolgize for it. you know what? I pay taxes also.



posted on May, 12 2011 @ 02:57 PM
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reply to post by dolphinfan
 


This seems to be the link.

17% of the labor force is wasted on Federal jobs alone. What a HUGE waste of productivity!

We must have at least 25% of adults feeding from the public trough. No country can afford that many non-producers esp when they are doing their best to strangle those who do produce.

As you said axe 2/3's of them and no one would notice.

I worked for a manager who came out of "government" What an absolute ZERO! He screwed the department up so much they fired him within three months and had to have a high level manager come in and straighten out the mess before they could bring in a new manager.

The majority of Government types I have come in contact with are just as bad.



posted on May, 12 2011 @ 02:57 PM
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Originally posted by Xcathdra
reply to post by dolphinfan
 


I think you might have misread the intent of his comment. I am by no means a supporter of President Obama, but in this case I think he was referring to public service being important.

I have issues with government jobs beause of their pay level. When you can make more money working for the government than you can a private business there is an issue. The reason government retirements were so good was to make up for the lack of pay over the years. A lifetime of service rewarded with a comfortable retirement, and for the most part im ok with that type of setuip.

NOT what we have now.....


NO, it's still that way. We DO NOT make more (as a general rule) than the exact same job in the private sector. Most comparisons between government and private sector jobs compare apples to oranges. We do, however, get good retirement benefits and that is an incentive. What I do have is security, which is why knowing I am making less than I could in the private sector is fine with me.



posted on May, 12 2011 @ 03:03 PM
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Originally posted by thisguyrighthere
reply to post by usernameconspiracy
 


Ive worked several government jobs over the decades and was always threatened with termination for getting things done, doing too much, and refusing to write blank checks without shopping around.

It's still like pulling teeth to convince some of the higher ups to let go of their long held partnerships because the taxpayer is getting screwed so hard on every purchase we make.

They all look at me like Im from another planet for not just stamping a seal of approval on every expense that crosses my desk.


Yeah, I don't see that at the Federal level. I can't speak for lower levels, but we have a budget, consistently finish the FY with leftover funds, and without wasting money.



posted on May, 12 2011 @ 03:07 PM
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Originally posted by Deebo

Originally posted by usernameconspiracy
reply to post by dolphinfan
 


I completely agree with the importance of government jobs, but then again I'm biased. Truthfully, most people that think government jobs are unimportant or filled by lazy people simply have no experience in the matter. I protect your tax dollars every single day and I'm damned good at it.



Is that what they make you believe? That you protect our tax dollars? You sure are doing a good job at it then. Have you read the news in the last ohhh I dunno how many years.
I guess your to blame for the bailouts, along with many other things.


Deebo


The fact is, I do. I not only believe it, I know it. Because I actually do the job. Now since you have absolutely no idea what my job is, I don't care if you believe me or not.



posted on May, 12 2011 @ 03:23 PM
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Easy solution make Government workers have to stick with the 3 strike you're out rule, 1 if its gross misconduct.
I think its pretty much guaranteed you'd have 50% less workforce the next year. Incompetence doesn't seem to be punished in the public sector just moved to a different department.



posted on May, 12 2011 @ 04:30 PM
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Originally posted by crimvelvet


We must have at least 25% of adults feeding from the public trough. No country can afford that many non-producers esp when they are doing their best to strangle those who do produce.



Non producers are people on wall street who design schemes and systems to bilk other private entities,
consumers and government. In my neck of the woods laying pipe is real mans work, but I guess you dig
that fancy stuff, that productive press a button, move paper and call up the lawyers, hard core non producing.
Hell ya sell that nutra sweet, those GMO seeds, benzene primers, 2,200 calorie slim value meal and Radioactive Beef, crimvelvet on a whole 'nother level up in here! Some of the alternative is just so noble

You seem to forget that anyone who works for money, transfers that money through commerce, that "25%"
spends their money just the same as any person, which ironically spurs production just the same

Hopefully one day soon you can have your merger of corporation and state, you'll get there. Where the state is A word and the corporation is THE word...
edit on 12-5-2011 by Janky Red because: (no reason given)
edit on 12-5-2011 by Janky Red because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 12 2011 @ 04:48 PM
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reply to post by dolphinfan
 

Actually many in my family have worked for the government and I feel safe and confident knowing that real professionals dedicated to their jobs with a long view of how things work and impact others are on the job as opposed to private contractors who don't take that long view. Some examples I can give use are in land and range management, fire protection, the forest service and the military - all fields of work in which I'd prefer dedicated professionals and federal employees over the privately contracted and yes, I've seen all this up close.



posted on May, 12 2011 @ 05:51 PM
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reply to post by ChrisCrikey
 


I don't disagree that there are some functions that are likely best performed by the government and some of the ones you mention I would fit into that category. Many, however are not and should be privatized. Private firms do in fact take a long term view of the work they do, albiet the motivations are different. They are motivated by profits and efficiency and based on competetion, they perform well or get fired, period. The same is the case for the individual. They are motivated by real merit pay, the real possibility of discipline and maintaining a satisfied customer lest their contract be canceled. Having been on both the side of providing outsourced services and consuming them, there is little difference between effective service providers and internal staff in terms of service delivery - you can not tell which is which if the relationship is done correctly. Why is it more effective to outsource? Because it enables you to drive cost control and risk into contracts, obtain cost predictability and drive your own staff to focus on their core competencies. Most services that are labor intensive or requires significant infrastructure is better run by a third party. What is the core competency of the government? It is ensuring the delivery of services which have been selected to be delivered by the government to the citizens/consumers of those services. It is not in the actual delivery of those services. The government has absolutely no business running data centers, delivering mail, run networks or call centers, fullfillment centers, managing 99% of the facilities they occupy, maintaining vehicle pools or most of it. The government should be in the business of aggressively managing the folks who provide those services.

The government is in a position, due to its size to drive huge savings to contracts and to manage those providers in a reasonably draconian fashion. Flip the badges from public to private sector, place the obligation to pay, benefit and pension those employees to the private sector, (government employee unions be damned) competently bid for services and manage those providers aggressively and you would save $billions and get a more effective and responsive government. You would have a natural blunt on the growth of government. Third parties are not going to expand the services they provide absent being directly paid and that requires difficult contract negotiations. It is not the same thing as getting a bit more dough every fiscal year and continuing to feed the beast of government. The private sector has the absolute incentive to drive efficiency into their model to increase their profit margin. The government should be in the business in managing service quality levels.

State functions are absolutely comical. For example, why does there need to be absolutely redundant functions to manage the motor vehicle functions in adjacent states, let alone nation wide? There is no economic sense in the way we currently manage government services and as a consequence, many of the jobs, I would suggest a majority, are non essential. Core state functions have a less than 5% level of differientation. Why would each function need absolute duplication? How can IBM provide effective service to dozens of geographically diverse clients out of a common center with a common staff, those clients having a differentiation level of over 50% but the government can't? The government obviously could, but they have no incentive to do so. The entire definition of the delivery of government services needs to be turned on its head. Once the model has been philosphically changed, we can talk about what those necessary services are.



posted on May, 12 2011 @ 06:42 PM
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reply to post by dolphinfan
 


Correct me if I'm mistaken, but aren't private sector jobs technically more important because without the private sector there wouldn't be enough money to go toward paying people in the public sector who are paid by the government from the tax money taken from employees in the private sector?

Without the private sector there wouldn't be money for the public sector. It makes me wonder just how many government employees realize that they're paid from taxpayer money.
edit on 12-5-2011 by arbitrarygeneraiist because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 12 2011 @ 07:43 PM
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reply to post by usernameconspiracy
 


You also helped them steal it, by the very job of "protecting" it (You decide where to spend the stolen money). Bottom line is taxes of any kind promote theft and violence (only "legally"). The problem with the statement the president made is that government jobs don't produce anything for the economy whatsoever. In fact it probably harms the economy more. It doesn't take years of research or college to realize that. Not trying to offend anyone here but this is just ridiculous.


Edit:
Sorry thanks for protecting the money that was stolen from me! I appreciate it by the way
edit on 12-5-2011 by kjburto because: (no reason given)
edit on 12-5-2011 by kjburto because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 12 2011 @ 08:08 PM
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Originally posted by dolphinfan
Honesty from the President. Nothing is more vital to the nation than a government job? How out of step with the citizens of the country can he be?


Huh?


I think there is nothing more important than working on behalf of the American people.


Did you perhaps quote the wrong line or are we just looking for things to get bent out of shape over?



posted on May, 12 2011 @ 08:33 PM
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reply to post by Runaway1977
 
There are supposed to be rules against misquoting here at ATS, especially in the thread's title and it's usually very vigorously enforced. I guess if you present particular political slant ATS moderation has no problem with this. I've seen it way too many times...I can't effectively fight this bias because it goes to the very top and the ownership of this site but it doesn't hurt to point it out once in a while.



posted on May, 12 2011 @ 09:06 PM
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reply to post by dolphinfan
 


I see where everyone is coming from but people like me who work for government have a job to do. Yes, I may deliver mail but it does not make it any less important than anyone else's job. There are alot of other government jobs more important than mine delivering mail. But, without those services America would not be as great as it is.



posted on May, 12 2011 @ 09:50 PM
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reply to post by ChrisCrikey
 


The article headline is what it is and when I stated he indicated it was vital I was not quoting him, hence there was no misquoting in any of the posts.

In the context of semantics, stating that there is "nothing is more important" is analogous to stating that "it is vital". No I did not quote him in my statement and was not suggesting those were his words, merely my intrepretation of them, which, after all is what a discussion board is designed to be a forum for.

As for folks who are doing what are important functions like delivering mail, I totally agree that those are important functions and that there are many folks who do them seriously and do them well and that they are key in the maintenance of an orderly and well functioning society. I don't however believe that the people who perform those jobs should be receiving a government pay check, government funded medical insurance, benefits or pensions. They should be employed in the private sector providing services back to the government with those burdens taken off the backs of the tax payer.



posted on May, 12 2011 @ 10:20 PM
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reply to post by dolphinfan
 
From your original post quoting Obama verbatim if your source is to be believed "...I think there is nothing more important than working on behalf of the American people." Obama
Too bad your link doesn't work but if you aren't misquoting Obama then your source is misquoting him in the title of their video and it's very misleading and sensational....and the semantics thing...yeah, you've really got it going on, pretzel logic too from what I can see.

keep trying though.
edit on 12-5-2011 by ChrisCrikey because: edited for puntuation



posted on May, 12 2011 @ 10:23 PM
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reply to post by dolphinfan
 


It was a complete deception on your part and apparently many noticed. You attempted to conflate the "importance" of "working on behalf of the American people" with every government job being vital to the nation. If you are having a hard time deciphering the vast difference between what was said and what you characterized then I am going to suggest an interpreter or professional reader.









 
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