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Civilian and military retirement payments are not comparable

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Another opinion on civilian and military retirement benefits. While we probably agree that Congress once again failed to do their job and do a comprehensive job of fixing our long time budget problems, and if they were going to dock anybody’s retirement, it should have been their own; I must take exception to your implication that there is some kind of equity issue between the retirement pay for Federal Civil Servants and the Military with what they did. Your Retired DOD civilian commentator is correct, the two systems do not mix and if there is any inequity involved it would be in favor of the military in my opinion. First, based on my own experience, your characterization of all Federal Civil Servants as being “paper pushing bureaucrats"is far off the mark. I had 1500 Federal Civil Servants (many were veterans) under my command and I can tell you that, with very few exceptions, they were dedicated civil servants and did a great job of serving their fellow Americans. And contrary to your view, their “unions” pale, in terms of power and influence when compared to military organizations such as AUSA and MOA, in my opinion. This is primarily because only blue collar employees are unionized. Supervisory and Managerial people are precluded from belonging to a union. As to the equity issue unlike the Military retirement system, Federal employees have to contribute a portion of their pay to their retirement. Under CSRS it was 7%. Under FERS it was 6.2% to SS and .8 % to FERS (+ most pay an additional 5% into a 401K type plan that is matched by their agency) As part of this budget deal new hires will now be required to pay an additional 1.3% into the FERS portion. As to the COLA issue, under the 2014 budget deal that the President signed today, the COLA for “working age” (those less than 62 yrs old.) military retirees will be reduced by - 1% until they turn 62. That is the first reduction since the 1980s for military retirees. As for Federal retirees, a similar provision would not make sense because of the fact that under the FERS system, federal retirees that retire prior to age 62 already get no COLA until they are 62. Those that are older than 62 are getting a COLA, for the first time in 4 years. While I do not support reducing the retirement pay of a specific group of veterans, absent a comprehensive revision of the entire military compensation and retirement system, which really needs to be done; it is not an equity issue between military and federal retirees. Both groups should be treated fairly and previous agreements honored. That certainly did not happen in this instance
Another reader responds that this GS bureaucrat is delusional. My brother was a former FBI special agent and he once told me about having to go into a large Social Security Administration hub concerning an investigation. If I am correct, the hub was in Newark, NJ. When he stepped into a large room with a hundred or more personnel at computer stations, he observed that every single one of these GS employees were asleep, on the job, and it was mid-morning. He told me that this was not uncommon. The Civil Service is a liberal progressive creation and these politicians protect them and reward them because these GS loafers vote for these progressives and empower these politicians. We all know that it is virtually impossible to fire a GS employee of the Department of Defense. Why? Because the politicians wrote the laws and entrenched these blood sucking bums on the dole of the taxpayers. All governmental agencies are ripe with fraud, waste, and abuse, thus seventeen plus trillion dollars in debt and getting larger every second.

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