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(CBS New York)   All those endless delays and planes falling out of the skies are over thanks to Congress and their approval of a bill ending furloughs of air traffic controllers   (newyork.cbslocal.com) divider line 55
    More: Followup, congresses, air traffic controllers, control towers, Joe Piscopo, alternate ending  
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765 clicks; posted to Politics » on 26 Apr 2013 at 2:44 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-04-26 02:36:44 PM  
While it's nice to see that Congress can actually still do at least the most non-controversial things ever, this is bad because it gets rid of the one very public and very visible symptom of the terrible idea that is the sequester. Once this is out of sight, the rest of the horrible things that the sequester does will be out of mind of most people, and will continue to fester. This should have been the wake up call that lead to actual reform, instead of just putting a topical anesthetic on a systemic infection.
 
2013-04-26 02:43:31 PM  
When your flight is on time and you have a great weekend, remember....Obama was against fixing any problems.
 
2013-04-26 02:49:55 PM  
Congress is going on vacation starting this weekend. They didn't want to have to sit with us peons through the delays.
 
2013-04-26 02:51:23 PM  
Though I recently found out my position was granted an exemption from furlough, about 300 of my coworkers are subject to it, and it sucks, for them especially, but for our organization and the rest the coutry in general.

It's such a catch 22. Do you try to really bust ass to ensure youre completing your assignments/projects/missions with the same level of success as before the furloughs? If you do 100% of your job at an 80% work rate it's going to reflect poorly on you.

At the same time, not falling overself to work harder post-furlough plays into the "lazy, entitled" government employee meme and sort of goes against the spirit of executing what you're assigned.

There were smart ways to trim money out of the budget. Even things like continued hiring freeze, continued pay freeze, release of rehired annuitants and such, as much as I disagree with the policies, would make more sense then simply cutting 20% of your work staffs hours across the board.

But, you know, whatever, as long as commuter flights are on time I guess we're all good.
 
2013-04-26 02:51:32 PM  
was the impact really that bad?  Not trolling, I honestly don't know
 
2013-04-26 02:51:33 PM  
img839.imageshack.us
 
2013-04-26 02:52:10 PM  

nmrsnr: While it's nice to see that Congress can actually still do at least the most non-controversial things ever, this is bad because it gets rid of the one very public and very visible symptom of the terrible idea that is the sequester. Once this is out of sight, the rest of the horrible things that the sequester does will be out of mind of most people, and will continue to fester. This should have been the wake up call that lead to actual reform, instead of just putting a topical anesthetic on a systemic infection.


*standing ovation*
 
2013-04-26 02:53:25 PM  

nmrsnr: While it's nice to see that Congress can actually still do at least the most non-controversial things ever, this is bad because it gets rid of the one very public and very visible symptom of the terrible idea that is the sequester. Once this is out of sight, the rest of the horrible things that the sequester does will be out of mind of most people, and will continue to fester. This should have been the wake up call that lead to actual reform, instead of just putting a topical anesthetic on a systemic infection.


I've got a new nickname for the Republican Party.
 
2013-04-26 02:53:40 PM  

nmrsnr: topical anesthetic on a systemic infection.


do not GIS

/you have been warned
 
2013-04-26 02:56:46 PM  
This could all have been avoided if Congress had made a deal and negated the sequester altogether
 
2013-04-26 02:58:19 PM  

Summoner101: This could all have been avoided if Congress had made a deal and negated the sequester altogether


Maybe they would have if not for Obama's double-reverse psychology mind-trick!
 
2013-04-26 02:58:21 PM  
Teahadists: The sequester is a good thing unless it affects me personally.
 
2013-04-26 02:59:39 PM  

nmrsnr: While it's nice to see that Congress can actually still do at least the most non-controversial things ever, this is bad because it gets rid of the one very public and very visible symptom of the terrible idea that is the sequester. Once this is out of sight, the rest of the horrible things that the sequester does will be out of mind of most people, and will continue to fester. This should have been the wake up call that lead to actual reform, instead of just putting a topical anesthetic on a systemic infection.


Completely agree with you.

A sequester without some pain for the general public is like starting a war then sending other parents' kids to fight it.
 
2013-04-26 03:01:17 PM  
Having worked at the FAA, I can say that we are LESS SAFE for this.  Sure ATC is better meaning more flights, but what do you think the other people at the FAA DO?All those rules the ATC follow, specifically the ground control stuff, that all is handled by the people we just laid off.  Never mind that the system was pretty well streched to begin with, now we have decided to eat our seed corn.

Americans are stupid.
 
2013-04-26 03:01:36 PM  

johnny_vegas: was the impact really that bad?  Not trolling, I honestly don't know


I work with defense government workers who are expecting similar furloughs shortly, cutting their pay by 10% or more. I would say that's some impact, IMHO.
 
2013-04-26 03:02:30 PM  
Summoner101:
This could all have been avoided if Congress had made a deal and negated the sequester altogether

...ignoring, of course, that the sequester was a negotiated deal in the first place, where the Democrats got a tax increase in return for negotiating budget cuts. Which they then refused to do.

The really funny part is that there are more air traffic controllers than there were a couple of years ago, getting paid more per controller, with 25% fewer flights.

Kinda makes you wonder why they had to do anything at all, instead of just firing the many extra controllers that we now have.

/remember, the sequester isn't about cutting budgets - it's about cutting back on the INCREASE in the budget of the government...
 
2013-04-26 03:05:10 PM  

plewis: Having worked at the FAA, I can say that we are LESS SAFE for this.  Sure ATC is better meaning more flights, but what do you think the other people at the FAA DO?All those rules the ATC follow, specifically the ground control stuff, that all is handled by the people we just laid off.  Never mind that the system was pretty well streched to begin with, now we have decided to eat our seed corn.

Americans are stupid.


Government is bad.  So less government looking after things like safety means (logically) that things will be safer.
 
2013-04-26 03:08:44 PM  

cirby: where the Democrats got a tax increase in return for negotiating budget cuts.


This was not any part of any deal that involved the sequester. The sequester was from the Republicans holding the debt ceiling hostage, and the Democrats agreeing to either unspecified future cuts or the sequester in order to not immediately tank the US economy by being unable to pay for the government.

AirForceVet: I work with defense government workers who are expecting similar furloughs shortly, cutting their pay by 10% or more. I would say that's some impact, IMHO.


I'm lucky that I work for a government institution that isn't likely to have furloughs, but they've capped overtime, so if people think that our production isn't going to go down now that people can't work more hours for more money, well, they're in for disappointment.
 
2013-04-26 03:10:43 PM  
"Oh shiat! We forgot to exclude something that affects well off Americans from the sequester. To the leglislation-mobile!"
 
2013-04-26 03:11:03 PM  

johnny_vegas: nmrsnr: topical anesthetic on a systemic infection.

do not GIS

/you have been warned


Was ... that ... a gangrenous leg ... and a rotting asshole?
 
2013-04-26 03:12:17 PM  
I actually just left the federal government. I was working for the judiciary. One HUGE issue with these cuts is that it is leading to an issue where the people who are good at their jobs and have the ability to leave are abandoning their jobs in droves, where as the lifers who do nothing more than what they have to do in order to not get fired. In my department alone we had close to a 50% turn over because no one wanted to deal with the arbitrary cuts and threats of furloughs. And it was not a random 50% either, it was mostly the most capable in the department and that is how they were able to find new jobs so easily.
 
2013-04-26 03:13:12 PM  
SPEND LESS MONEY!

*less money is spent*

OMG SPEND MORE MONEY!
 
2013-04-26 03:16:55 PM  
So is Obama going to follow through with his threat to veto any sequestration bandage legislation.  This fits as being something to veto.
 
2013-04-26 03:17:52 PM  

cirby: Summoner101:
This could all have been avoided if Congress had made a deal and negated the sequester altogether

...ignoring, of course, that the sequester was a negotiated deal in the first place, where the Democrats got a tax increase in return for negotiating budget cuts. Which they then refused to do.



The initial proposal from the Democrats on the committee offered 3 trillion in deficit reduction, including 1.3 trillion in new revenue and 400 billion in Medicare savings, but was rejected on partisan lines for the level of tax increases. The Republican Toomey plan proposed 1.2 trillion in deficit reduction, including 300 billion in new revenue

The sequester came about because of a failure to negotiate within the supercommittee.  The democrats on the committee offered budget cuts.  The republicans refused that offer and responded with a counter-offer that cut a third of what the Democrats proposed.

Seems pretty farking clear to me that the democrats were about 3 times as willing to cut the budget as the republicans.
 
2013-04-26 03:22:42 PM  

nmrsnr: While it's nice to see that Congress can actually still do at least the most non-controversial things ever, this is bad because it gets rid of the one very public and very visible symptom of the terrible idea that is the sequester. Once this is out of sight, the rest of the horrible things that the sequester does will be out of mind of most people, and will continue to fester. This should have been the wake up call that lead to actual reform, instead of just putting a topical anesthetic on a systemic infection.


Really -- Done in one.

If you don't feel the pain then you will re-elect Congress Critter Bob or Barbara because terrorism.
 
2013-04-26 03:23:07 PM  

jehovahs witness protection: When your flight is on time and you have a great weekend, remember....Obama was against fixing any problems.


When your child is sick and Medicaid funding has been cut, remember.......Republicans want both the sequester and a piecemeal solution.
 
2013-04-26 03:25:11 PM  

cirby: The really funny part is that there are more air traffic controllers than there were a couple of years ago, getting paid more per controller, with 25% fewer flights.


***Citation needed***
 
2013-04-26 03:33:50 PM  
So they got rid of the Unions, too? My mother-in-law (a Tea Bagger) said it was because the Unions were making the flights late. Sounds legit

/of course she only gets her news from the usual suspects of Teatardom
 
2013-04-26 03:34:38 PM  

MindStalker: cirby: The really funny part is that there are more air traffic controllers than there were a couple of years ago, getting paid more per controller, with 25% fewer flights.

***Citation needed***


http://www.bls.gov/oes/2008/may/oes532021.htm
in 2008 there appears to have been 24,260, in 2012 there were 23,230, in 2002 there were 23,410
 
2013-04-26 03:36:17 PM  

MBrady: machodonkeywrestler: jehovahs witness protection: When your flight is on time and you have a great weekend, remember....Obama was against fixing any problems.

When your child is sick and Medicaid funding has been cut, remember.......Republicans want both the sequester and a piecemeal solution.

When your kid is sick, take him/her to Michael Jackson's doctor.

When Medicaid funding is cut, remember that 0 could have put everyone on Medicaid/0bamacare, but just like hillary, he was only interested in giving something to the uninsured, not the underinsured.


That's a gross misreading of ACA.
 
2013-04-26 03:36:27 PM  
How did they pay for this? It has to be either (a) raise taxes; (b) take money from another program or; (c) add to the deficit.

I'm guessing on "c" since the "fiscal conservatives" will conveniently overlook increasing the deficit if it's for something they like - see 2001 - 2009.
 
2013-04-26 03:42:30 PM  
I think it's more interesting to look at the list of things Congress didn't fund presumably because they found it less important than airport delays.  You know, things like education and food for poverty stricken children.
 
2013-04-26 03:44:18 PM  
"What was their problem?"
"Oh they were just fallin' from the sky is all, it's fine now."

www.jaunted.com

/one of the best "just before 1:00 AM" sketches SNL has ever done.
 
2013-04-26 03:51:11 PM  

jehovahs witness protection: When your flight is on time and you have a great weekend, remember....Obama was against fixing any problems.


Because Obama himself is tasked with not only writing the bill, but passing it and voting on it. This has nothing to do with the Hose totally blocking every single bill and using every trick in the book to make him look bad. This could of been avoided if the House got their collective heads out of their asses and did their farking job.
 
2013-04-26 03:51:11 PM  
I see the Senate has its priorities in order:

1) White House tours.
2) Airport delays.

...

18,962 and counting) Infrastructure, poverty, education, hunger, disaster preparedness, food safety, long-term unemployment, etc.
 
2013-04-26 03:57:10 PM  

Cornelius Dribble: I see the Senate has its priorities in order:

1) White House tours.
2) Airport delays.

...

18,962 and counting) Infrastructure, poverty, education, hunger, disaster preparedness, food safety, long-term unemployment, etc.


That is sochulizm!!!
 
2013-04-26 03:57:16 PM  

nmrsnr: While it's nice to see that Congress can actually still do at least the most non-controversial things ever, this is bad because it gets rid of the one very public and very visible symptom of the terrible idea that is the sequester. Once this is out of sight, the rest of the horrible things that the sequester does will be out of mind of most people, and will continue to fester. This should have been the wake up call that lead to actual reform, instead of just putting a topical anesthetic on a systemic infection.


Yes, but only because ATC isn't controversial like Head Start or Meals on Wheels. Fark the old people starving in their homes, I've got a flight to catch!
 
2013-04-26 04:00:06 PM  

Saiga410: So is Obama going to follow through with his threat to veto any sequestration bandage legislation.  This fits as being something to veto.


No, it doesn't. Obama threatened to veto any bill that just removed the cuts. This bill doesn't remove cuts, it allows the FAA to make deeper cuts to other areas of their budget to offset restoring these salaries and end the furloughs.
 
2013-04-26 04:03:19 PM  

danfrank: How did they pay for this? It has to be either (a) raise taxes; (b) take money from another program or; (c) add to the deficit.

I'm guessing on "c" since the "fiscal conservatives" will conveniently overlook increasing the deficit if it's for something they like - see 2001 - 2009.


The FAA gets to raid an emergency fund, to the tune of $280-some million.

Seriously.

That's the patch - we now have less of a safety net. IF anything happens to planes (like a 787 catches fire with actual people on it, or lightning, or squirrels in the hydraulics), we now have less to spend to fix it, which will require an emergency funding bill, which will require raiding some other part of the budget (because Republicans are nearer-sighted than a drunk Mr Magoo), which takes us back to square 1.
 
2013-04-26 04:04:57 PM  

AirForceVet: johnny_vegas: was the impact really that bad?  Not trolling, I honestly don't know

I work with defense government workers who are expecting similar furloughs shortly, cutting their pay by 10% or more. I would say that's some impact, IMHO.


oh yeah I am all over the defense side of the furlough impacts...was specifically wondering impacts on air travel, service, lines, etc.
 
2013-04-26 04:16:41 PM  
The reason Congress acted so quickly on this issue this week is that Congress is going home and they need the flight delays ended in time for their return flights to DC next weekend.
 
2013-04-26 04:25:20 PM  

runwiz: The reason Congress acted so quickly on this issue this week is that Congress is going home and they need the flight delays ended in time for their return flights to DC next weekend.


Obama should wait until they get back from their vacation to sign it just for the lulz.
 
2013-04-26 04:43:02 PM  

johnny_vegas: AirForceVet: johnny_vegas: was the impact really that bad?  Not trolling, I honestly don't know

I work with defense government workers who are expecting similar furloughs shortly, cutting their pay by 10% or more. I would say that's some impact, IMHO.

oh yeah I am all over the defense side of the furlough impacts...was specifically wondering impacts on air travel, service, lines, etc.


Ya, at the major airports, ATC is already understaffed... it is a really tough job and ever since the unions got broken, they've got terrible morale, frequently don't get the breaks required by law, and a million problems with old tech. Cutting 15-20% of staff in busy airspace meant delays of 2-3 hours for most of the bigger places.

WRT defense, my problem is that the cutting that got done wasn't the wasteful stuff, it wasn't go-nowhwere projects for buddies or orders for airplanes the USAF doesn't want or tanks the Army specifically said they don't want b/c they have so many new tanks they can't find places to store them... it's janitorial staff, food service workers making 9 bucks an hour, outside staffed IT guys, and hard-working people getting shafted while congressional buddies still get their millions of bucks.

The law was crafted such that even with the cuts, the waste never stopped... these are people who want to break government so they can point at it and say "see, it doesn't work!"  They cut meals on wheels, head start, ATC, and other very necessary and good programs because they want to be able to point at the federal government as a whole and tell you that you aren't getting any bang for your buck.
 
2013-04-26 04:54:58 PM  
And yet extended unemployment benefits are still cut... 17% here in California.
But as long as these congresscritters vacation lobbyist junket fact-finding flights aren't delayed, well that's all right then.
/assholes
 
2013-04-26 05:20:23 PM  

jehovahs witness protection: When your flight is on time and you have a great weekend, remember....Obama was against fixing any problems.


So he's going to veto the bill then?

Remember who had to pass the bill first?
 
2013-04-26 05:43:27 PM  
Can't see Head Start kids, Meals on Wheels seniors and Medicare cancer patients from 30,000 feet.
 
2013-04-26 06:14:45 PM  

Nina_Hartley's_Ass: Can't see Head Start kids, Meals on Wheels seniors and Medicare cancer patients from 30,000 feet.


And don't fly too close to the border where the Border Patrol Agents are on furlough. And those toxic waste dumps and fertilizer plants really can't be seen from 30,000+ feet and therefore don't need inspectors.
 
2013-04-26 06:21:00 PM  
Mindstalker:
http://www.bls.gov/oes/2008/may/oes532021.htm
in 2008 there appears to have been 24,260, in 2012 there were 23,230, in 2002 there were 23,410


...except when you look at the ones employed by the Executive Branch (the ones in question), there were 21,220 in 2008 and 21,830 in 2012. Their annual mean wages went from $111,910 to $121,470.

I was wrong about the number of flights, though - we've had an uptick in traffic since 2010, so there are only about ten percent fewer flights than there were in 2008-2010 - but if you look back to the year 2000, there were about 23 percent more flights, with fewer controllers.

Anyway - in the last four years or so, we have about three percent more controllers, making about nine percent more money each, handling fewer flights.

The FAA's total budget is $16 billion, by the way. Even assuming huge overheads per controller (total pay for all is less than $3 billion), they should be able to come up with a way to pay the people who are actually needed...
 
2013-04-26 06:22:20 PM  

beb004: Congress is going on vacation starting this weekend. They didn't want to have to sit with us peons through the delays.


This. They'll move like lightning on anything that actually effects THEM.
 
2013-04-26 07:10:47 PM  

cirby: Mindstalker:
http://www.bls.gov/oes/2008/may/oes532021.htm
in 2008 there appears to have been 24,260, in 2012 there were 23,230, in 2002 there were 23,410

...except when you look at the ones employed by the Executive Branch (the ones in question), there were 21,220 in 2008 and 21,830 in 2012. Their annual mean wages went from $111,910 to $121,470.

I was wrong about the number of flights, though - we've had an uptick in traffic since 2010, so there are only about ten percent fewer flights than there were in 2008-2010 - but if you look back to the year 2000, there were about 23 percent more flights, with fewer controllers.

Anyway - in the last four years or so, we have about three percent more controllers, making about nine percent more money each, handling fewer flights.

The FAA's total budget is $16 billion, by the way. Even assuming huge overheads per controller (total pay for all is less than $3 billion), they should be able to come up with a way to pay the people who are actually needed...


Your comparing federal only to total
flights, that makes no sense. Total controllers to total flights are the workload per controller. You can certainly make the argument that we've moved responsibility from the airports to the feds and that certainly is an issue but there are less controllers in total.
 
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