Federal government is hiring 193,000 additional workers. Why?


Sorting the Jan. 16 Atlanta Journal-Constitution, I was sick to see the headline on the “ajcjobs” section read, “Government needs to add 193,000 hires.”

I know what you’re saying: “Why would you read the AJC?” Friends are out of town and said we could have their Sunday paper for the coupons. Wife can’t pass them up.

Let’s discuss the madness of the both the headline and what lies behind it. How could our federal government possibly need 193,000 more employees? Where on earth could my/our life benefit with any more government employees? I would have no problem with 193,000 more troops/border-patrol/intelligence personnel. Just saying.

The article begins by defining these jobs as “mission critical,” and needing to be filled in two years. Why? I wonder what happens in two years.

This number and those terms come from a non-profit organization, the Partnership for Public Service, which seeks to “revitalize the federal government.”

Poor, poor Uncle Sam, does he not know Prozac’s a $4 generic drug at Walmart? Now why does a non-profit want to “revitalize” and promote government employment? Tax-exempt status? Government grants?

Nah, they just love this great land. “The federal government is a great employer and offers unique job opportunities. Where else could you do the things that they do at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, for instance? You can find interesting work, job security, a career path, all while knowing that you are serving your country,” said Leigh Moore, owner of Bridge Career Management, and a certified federal job trainer. “But the government is a different culture, and not a good fit for everyone.”

You said it, sister. Who could stand a significantly higher than private-sector pay, health and retirement/pension benefits paid for by the ever decreasing tax base? Oh, and don’t forget the almost non-existent firing of a federal employee.

Mrs. Moore seems pleasant and honest, and I’m sure she gives every customer of hers, whether they’re seeking federal of provide employment, the same amount of time, work and dedication they seek. I just don’t want government grants funding her and I’m not implying that they are.

Next is Theresa Wicker of Atlanta. A former Eastern Airlines stewardess, she has worked in hospitality, customer service and administrative positions. Saying she is tired of corporate layoffs so, “The government seemed like a safer place to work and less age discriminating. The jobs are interesting, and the benefits are great.” Again, they repeat myself.

So what does Wicker do? Why she joins a trade organization. “By joining the National Business Aviation Association, I learned that I qualified to be a federal cabin safety inspector, since I had been a flight attendant,” Wicker said.

After joining the NBAA, “annual fee applies,” she sends in an application for this title/certification, “small fee plus annual recert fee,” so that she is more likely to get that federal job.

It’s a win, win, win. The NBAA get a money stream, the federal government gets another money stream and Wicker gets a money stream, that eventually come from us the taxpayer. I can feel my like getting better.

I have been reading “Democracy in America” by Alexis de Tocqueville and find myself feverishly longing for the 1830 days of individual and state liberty. I’m not speaking of slavery, or discrimination of color, age, race or creed; they are indefensible.

I am speaking of people living unrestricted, to honestly and lawfully to achieve their personal and financial goals without the federal government getting in the way. I’m speaking of the states saying, “No, you won’t” to the federal government when it encroached on the exclusive rights of the states.

So Moore says, “Many people think you have to live in Washington D.C., to work for the government, but about 84 percent of jobs are located outside the capital. Atlanta has about 30 to 40 agencies located here.”

That’s 1.134 million federal employees, 22,680 per state and 142 per county in Georgia. Those 193,000 “mission critical” jobs, a 14 percent increase, means 3,860 additional per state and 24 more per Georgia county.

I realize that states are different sizes so therefore would have different numbers, but I was attempting to stay very general.

Our great republic (yes, we are a constitutional republic, and my God keep her so) was not designed for Washington to be or become a central planning leviathan that reaches into our businesses, communities and homes.

Tocqueville speaks on numerous occasions of state actions that he can’t dream of the federal government ever exercising control over. He saw a trend of how the federal government was decreasing its role in the day to day life of Americans and governing by its enumerated powers, focusing on its main purpose of foreign policy/national defense.

I have several friends that work for the federal government and they are all kind, giving, honest and patriotic Americans. They work hard in their jobs and should be proud of their work as I believe is true of most federal employees.

My argument is that there are many, more than 50 percent of federal civilian jobs that could be eliminated. Many would be the responsibility of the state government or not the responsibility of any government agency and would be eliminated entirely.

Would people lose their jobs? Some, but welcome to the real world economy. Freedom and liberty come at an expense, and government doesn’t like to pay.

Government believes that more government is the answer. An agency isn’t working. Throw more money and people at it. There’s a problem that individuals can, but won’t solve for themselves. Create a new agency and fund it outrageously.

I’m not anti-government; I’m small, limited government. Government grows and it grows mostly without notice. When you give government your rights, they don’t give them back.

If the federal government needs to increase its size 14 percent, it’s not to compensate for natural growth of currently provided services. More rights have been taken from you that now require new agencies and new people to manage your life.

As Tocqueville says, “… people have a poor understanding of the haven toward which they are steering. Hypnotized by their memories, they are judging absolute power by what used to be and not by what it might become today.”

Keep your eyes open.

Matt O’Neal

Peachtree City, Ga.