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Is the old joke about government jobs true?

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Is the old joke about government jobs true?

Old 05-12-07, 01:04 AM
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Is the old joke about government jobs true?

My dad has worked for the federal government my whole life and growing up I always heard all the jokes about how government workers don't do anything. I figured they were just that - jokes. But recently I've been hearing more and more people give legitimacy to this notion. I've had people flat out tell me that it's absurd how little you have to do if you work for the government. Obviously this doesn't apply to EVERY job.

I mean, I basically live in DC and doing nothing is pretty much my dream job!
Old 05-12-07, 01:25 AM
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Just don't let them hear you say that...federal prison is no joke!!
Old 05-12-07, 01:46 AM
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It's true. It's so bad in Lane County, that they used our tax dollars for an ad campaign letting us know that our county workers are working hard for us. Glad to know our money is being so well spent.
Old 05-12-07, 04:09 AM
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Originally Posted by Trelach24
My dad has worked for the federal government my whole life and growing up I always heard all the jokes about how government workers don't do anything. I figured they were just that - jokes. But recently I've been hearing more and more people give legitimacy to this notion. I've had people flat out tell me that it's absurd how little you have to do if you work for the government. Obviously this doesn't apply to EVERY job.

I mean, I basically live in DC and doing nothing is pretty much my dream job!
Ask your dad
Old 05-12-07, 07:56 AM
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Maybe some jobs, but I also know some people who have a government job that keeps track of immigrants and their files, and they work quite a bit and hard.
Old 05-12-07, 08:11 AM
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Why don't government workers stare out the window in the morning?

Because, if they did, they'd have nothing to do all afternoon!

cheers,

-the Jesus
Old 05-12-07, 08:15 AM
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Oregon is the epitome of government doing next to nothing for its citizens, yet having the highest taxes in the nation. Over-sized government and over-sized government employees.
Old 05-12-07, 08:37 AM
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Some do work, some don't. The difference is that if you don't do work in a private company, you get fired. If you don't do work in the government, you get to keep your job, but you get shuffled around from division to division until they can find a place you will do the least damage.
Old 05-12-07, 09:28 AM
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Unfortunately, some government workers give credence to the Peter Principle.
Old 05-12-07, 09:32 AM
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of course its true, what do you think I do all day? unless being on dvdtalk is considered work.
Old 05-12-07, 09:37 AM
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As a political scientist, I'm going to have to disagree, at least at a federal level. This assumption arouse during the 1870s when the patronage system was still in use regarding the federal bureaucracy. Following the passage of the Pendleton Act in 1883, the patronage system was abolished, in favor of a civil service system. The civil service system awarded performance by making promotion merit based. Certainly their are problems with the civil service system (it has made it harder to fire individuals), but merit based appointments has helped to assure actual work gets done.

Furthermore, the assumption that government workers don't work in part stems from a failure to define who a government worker actually is. Members of the armed forces are government workers, as are all member of Congress and their staff. There are over 1200 judges employed by the federal government, not including the staffs which support the judicial system. Most times when complaints are made concerning "government jobs" they are referring to members of the federal bureaucracy.

Just some thoughts.
Old 05-12-07, 09:53 AM
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My dad works for the county - I think he only has to work 7 hr days 35 hrs a week is full time. If he works "overtime" he gets comp time to take off for vacation.

They have restrictions on phone calls - only certian area codes because people would make long distance calls and stay on the phone all day.
Old 05-12-07, 10:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Decadance
As a political scientist, I'm going to have to disagree, at least at a federal level. This assumption arouse during the 1870s when the patronage system was still in use regarding the federal bureaucracy. Following the passage of the Pendleton Act in 1883, the patronage system was abolished, in favor of a civil service system. The civil service system awarded performance by making promotion merit based. Certainly their are problems with the civil service system (it has made it harder to fire individuals), but merit based appointments has helped to assure actual work gets done.

Furthermore, the assumption that government workers don't work in part stems from a failure to define who a government worker actually is. Members of the armed forces are government workers, as are all member of Congress and their staff. There are over 1200 judges employed by the federal government, not including the staffs which support the judicial system. Most times when complaints are made concerning "government jobs" they are referring to members of the federal bureaucracy.

Just some thoughts.
What are you doing injecting "thoughts" and "facts" into this kind of thread?
Old 05-12-07, 10:34 AM
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Originally Posted by TomOpus
Unfortunately, some government workers give credence to the Peter Principle.
You mean they jerk-off more than the rest of us?
Old 05-12-07, 11:14 AM
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I've been a contractor for the Fed for the past five plus years, coming from a large corporation before that. From my observations, federal government employees really aren't any more lazy than what I saw in the corporate world. Some work hard, some do just enough to get by without being fired.
Old 05-12-07, 11:32 AM
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Originally Posted by JustinS
I've been a contractor for the Fed for the past five plus years, coming from a large corporation before that. From my observations, federal government employees really aren't any more lazy than what I saw in the corporate world. Some work hard, some do just enough to get by without being fired.


People are people, whoever they may work for.
Old 05-12-07, 11:35 AM
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Originally Posted by DVD Polizei
Oregon is the epitome of government doing next to nothing for its citizens, yet having the highest taxes in the nation. Over-sized government and over-sized government employees.
While I haven't examined the source data, this table would indicate that while Oregon taxes were relatively high during the 80s through the mid-90s, the current tax burden is below the national average.

http://www.taxfoundation.org/taxdata/show/476.html
Old 05-12-07, 11:39 AM
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My friend's dad had a government job and he told me it was the greatest thing in the world. Similiar to what CPA-ESQ wrote, 35 hours/week lots of time off.
Old 05-12-07, 12:55 PM
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Also, regarding the current administration, numerous changes have been made which make federal workers much more accountable. Simply look at the way the Dept. of Homeland Security is structured to get a taste. This, in my opinion, is one of the good things this administration has done.
Old 05-12-07, 02:18 PM
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I worked for federal and local government and I have lots of ties to state government and I can say that there is 1 good government employee for every 5 bad ones. So 20% of government employees do 100% of the work the rest are pretty useless, they work their 7 hours a day going the same thing over and over and over and never aspire to do anything more.

I've seen people at their desks with their hands on their mouse sound asleep, I've seen people legally blind that do computer work on a 21 inch monitor where the "start" button is as big as the monitor (HTF are they going to get any work done?!?) I've seen somebody with Turrets Syndrome screaming "Son of a bitch! Son of a bitch! That's a security violation!" over and over, and nobody pays attention to him. I got to a IT conference every year which all the state IT people go to and they are the biggest bunch of cluster fucks you ever want to lay your eyes on!

Last edited by Lateralus; 05-12-07 at 02:24 PM.
Old 05-12-07, 02:27 PM
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I work for a contractor for the govt so have seen the contractor side and govt side. It's like Lateralus said, 20% do most if not all the work. Govt contractors aren't much better. One reason is that a lot of the people bounce between the two.
Old 05-12-07, 02:57 PM
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I'm a government employee. I work 100 per week and make about $3/hr. I love grad school (so much that this is my third time!)
Old 05-12-07, 02:58 PM
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Originally Posted by JustinS
I've been a contractor for the Fed for the past five plus years, coming from a large corporation before that. From my observations, federal government employees really aren't any more lazy than what I saw in the corporate world. Some work hard, some do just enough to get by without being fired.
Agreed, however it seems to be a lot easier to coast along in a government job than in a corporate job, in my experience.
Old 05-12-07, 03:52 PM
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I work for the government and it is absolutely true.
Old 05-12-07, 05:31 PM
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What I never understood is the post office. Its 2pm in the afternoon, they have a line going out the door and out of eight windows that could be potentially open its always only two that are.

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