(Bloomberg) — President Barack Obama on Monday proposed a two-year freeze of the salaries of some 2 million federal workers, trying to seize the deficit-cutting initiative from Republicans with a sudden, dramatic stroke. Though signaling White House concern over record deficits, the freeze would make only a tiny dent in annual deficits or the nation's $14 trillion debt.This got to be a joke. $5 billion, when the budget deficit is in the trillions?
"Small businesses and families are tightening their belts," Obama said in brief remarks at the White House. "The government should, too." The administration said the plan was designed to save more than $5 billion over the first two years.
The proposal, which must be approved by Congress, would not apply to the military, but it would affect all others on the Executive Branch payroll. It would not affect members of Congress or their staffs, defense contractors, postal workers or federal court judges and workers.Of course, Obama the Nobel peace prize winner wouldn't cut on the military. And also, he can't ask Congress to approve a pay freeze to the Congress, can he? These are the limits of democracy.
[...] John Gage, president of the 600,000-member American Federation of Government Employees, called the decision "a slap at working people. ... To symbolically hit at federal employees I think is just wrong." He said the move would not really save as much as the White House claims because federal employees often get just a fraction of projected raises.Obviously, the union are going to fight anything that is not a pay raise.
Colleen Kelley, head of the 150,000-member National Treasury Employees Union, said union officials would try to derail the proposal in Congress. She may find some sympathy with union-friendly Democrats still in control for another month.
The federal government is the nation's largest employer, with about 2 million workers. About 85 percent of them work outside of the Washington, D.C., area.Of course you didn't, you had to give up on 2 million votes.
"I did not reach this decision easily, this is not a line item on a federal ledger, these are people's lives," Obama said.
Federal workers are an easy target. Polls show rising public anger toward the federal government at a time of high continued unemployment and Wall Street and auto bailouts.But you hope to offset those 2 million votes. That's the essence of politics.
House members and senators are paid $174,000 a year. Their last pay increase was $4,700 a year at beginning of 2009. The president's pay of $400,000 a year was fixed by Congress in January 2001 and has not changed since then.Quite a high pay for such incompetents, if you ask me.
Now about ObamaCare, one of the most business-unfriendly and most leftist policies that only exist in Europe for now:
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A federal judge declared a key provision of the Obama administration's health care law unconstitutional Monday, siding with Virginia's attorney general in a dispute that both sides agree will ultimately be decided by the U.S. Supreme Court.Thank God, it looks like they have found a copy of the Constitution. Let's hope we'll see many more of such justice decisions.
Hudson rejected the government's argument that it has the power under the Constitution to require individuals to buy health insurance, a provision that was set to take effect in 2014.
"Of course, the same reasoning could apply to transportation, housing or nutritional decisions," Hudson wrote. "This broad definition of the economic activity subject to congressional regulation lacks logical limitation" and is unsupported by previous legal cases around the Commerce Clause of the Constitution.Well, let's hope they do rule on these as well then.
The central issue in Virginia's lawsuit was whether the federal government has the power under the constitution to impose the insurance requirement. The Justice Department said the mandate is a proper exercise of the government's authority under the Commerce Clause.Anything can go under the Commerce Clause given the current interpretation of it. Tom Woods mentions this fact in many of his presentations at the Mises Institute. Here's on his interviews, available on YouTube: