Facebook Nation: Let it all hang out

When your friends, neighbors and relatives see your federal salary numbers will they laugh or cry?

Will they be enraged at the big bucks you are raking in for doing God-knows-what? Or will they quietly leave food packages on your doorstep in the dead of night, or slip money to your wretched children?


The flap over the public viewing of federal pay stubs has rattled a lot of federal workers. And not necessarily for the reasons you might think. Example: This comment from a long-time fed who’s taken lots of flack over the years, because he has the audacity to work for one of Uncle Sam’s few money-making operations, the Internal Revenue Service. His comment:


“I don’t know why the public needs to see my salary. All it will do will make burger-flippers mad, and people with a college degrees/professional jobs will probably laugh. I concur with what another cohort said about displaying my information. I don’t want anybody being able to know anything about me.

For almost 24 years I have done things to people in the performance of my job that hurt or adversely affected them. Remember, too, this was all done by the book. I (as an IRS employee) have been sued. Lucky for me the Department of Justice was able to prevent any damage to my credit.

I anger my sister every time we get together, because she wants to take pictures and posts them all on Facebook. I don’t have an account and don’t want my picture on Facebook. I’ve dealt with too many crazies over the years and don’t need people who’ve flipped out trying to get revenge on me for things I did in the performance of my duties. My sister thinks I’m nuts but I don’t trust any of those social-media programs. I don’t believe that their security is as good as they say. The less on there the better.”

—Tony of the IRS

And another:

“I notice that none of the newspapers that are pushing for full disclosure of federal salaries have, as yet, told us how much they pay reporters, editors, publishers and others who influence public opinion. I remember a few years back when a major network had to fire a number of staff people in order to give a raise to one of their multi-millionaire talking heads. The next week he was reporting on the plight of the poor in some Asian country.”

—Don’t Get It!

And from the Wry Comment Department, a confused, frugal fed writes:

“The Secret Service scandal was discovered when a disagreement on how much a prostitute wanted for her services came to light. She wanted $800. The Secret Service Agent offered $30. How ironic is it that the only person in Washington willing to cut spending gets fired? What’s wrong with our government?”


By Gillian Brockell

About one in six Americans have tattoos these days, but as per usual, Congress does not represent the people’s demographics. In a recent Roll Call survey only eight members of Congress revealed they have body art. Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Calif.) has both of his upper arms covered; as an ex-Marine, he got a new tattoo for every deployment. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. (R-Ill.) also sports two “half sleeves,” although his depict portraits of family members. And if you think this is anything new, think again — conservative patriarch Barry Goldwater had a prominent tattoo on his hand, and former president Theodore Roosevelt reportedly had a family crest inked on his chest.


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