So do we need them if we do not need them? They are not essential, right?
‘Non-essential’ is very much a misnomer.
If we ran government like a business we would classify those folks ‘non-mission critical’ … meaning that we do not need them to be present 24/7 to watch the lights blink and to panic when they stop blinking … but just let that check not show up in the mail and holy freaking !(^&#@ … where the hell did the non-essential people go?!
Was at Walter Reed on October 8th and had the opportunity to chat with various staff members. It seems that many of the civilians at the military hospital are officially furloughed due to the shutodwn — yet they are showing up for work to make sure that the hospital continues to fully function.
They are working in expectation that some deal will be worked out and that a pay deal will be forthcoming.
Kudos. My own adventure in the hospital had a successful outcome. Am again at home, healthy and enjoying life.
The Sequester had already imposed its own major impact on services at Walter Reed beginning back in August 2013. The government shutdown has added to that burden — but it good to see that things have a way of working themselves out.
1956 – Born at Leigh Memorial Hospital, Norfolk, Virginia to John Henry Golden and to Clara Anne Norfleet, February 11th. Lived in the Tidewater area (Norfolk, Portsmouth and Chesapeake) until the family briefly moved to Birmingham, Alabama in 1961.
1961 – My parents decided to move on in search of better employment. I was left to live in Birmingham, Alabama with my grandparents, Henry Roosevelt Golden and Readie Mae Belcher, who were dairy farmers. Completed first grade.
Backstory: Except for several short visits I never really got to know my grandparents until 1974-1975 when I was stationed with the Army close enough to visit with them. I did not grow up with cousins or any family other than siblings. It would be in my Army years that I began researching the family history as a way of learning more about who they were. My father had not a clue … he had run away from home in his mid-teens without any desire to be near family, and he knew nothing about his extended family outside of his own parents and siblings.
1962 – Reunited with my parents and siblings. Briefly lived in Macon, Georgia where I began second grade in school. Our family moved within a month of school starting to Jacksonville, Florida. Attended Hendricks Avenue ES.
1965-1966 – Greenfield ES (5th Grade) and Windy Hills ES (6th Grade). Beach Boys were on the radio. Fell in love with their music. Still listen to them constantly today.
1967-69 – Southside Junior High (Go Knights! … they call it a Middle School now). Was not the world’s best student. Got a letter in Chorus. Started Campus Crusade for Christ chapter on campus. Began study of French language. Tried out for football … was luckily cut before I embarrassed myself. I never liked football anyway. Played baseball on both a Little League team and for my church, Glendale Community Church. … Although I was young, began volunteering to work in various political campaigns. The whole world was political at the time.
1970-1974 – Englewood High School, Jacksonville, Florida. Favorite subjects: English and French. Wrote weekly newspaper column for Arlington Trends newspaper. Worked throughout high school years. Skipped the prom. Shift-managed a Dairy Queen during 11th and 12th grades. A highlight was my organizing role in ‘Young Democrats for Nixon‘ in the ’72 election.
1974 – Joined the Florida Army National Guard as MOS 26L, Tactical Microwave Communications Repairman in January, while still in school. Following graduation, went to Basic Training at Fort Jackson, South Carolina (7/74 Unit B-3-1), and took Basic Electronics training at the same base. Transferred to U.S. Army Signals School, Fort Gordon, Georgia in November 1974 to begin advanced MOS schooling.
Backstory: I was going to join the military one way or the other. My father was a Marine. Went to go see the Marine recruiter but he was out. When I told my girlfriend she freaked out. She told me that I should reconsider the military. She had a family friend that knew everything about the military. She said I should talk to him. I did. He was an Army National Guard recruiter.
1975 – Completed military schooling in May 1975 and returned home to Jacksonville, Florida. Got a job as a copier repairman and started college at Florida Junior College. Disliked both. Wanted to see the world. Petitioned to be released from National Guard service so that I could join the Regular Army. Permission was granted and I left home in November 1975 to begin a crosscountry trek to Monterey, California for more military schooling at the Defense Foreign Language Institute (DLI).
1976 – Spent the entire year (48 weeks) in study of the Czech and Slovak languages at Monterey, California.
1977 – Transferred to Goodfellow AFB, San Angelo, Texas (1/77) for integration of foreign language skills with military intelligence processing technology. Upon completion of training, transferred next to Fort Devens, Massachusetts for training as an Electronic Warfare Specialist. Reported for my first duty assignment at Ludwigsburg, Germany in June with the 307th Army Security Agency (ASA) Battalion, Forward Control and Analysis Center (FCAC).
Backstory: The Army misassigned me. They were supposed to send an MOS 98C Czech Analyst to the FCAC. I was a 98G Czech Linguist (we were smarter than the analysts 24/7, but it seems that they wanted a school trained analyst). OJT retrained as an analyst — learned skills which would affect the rest of my life and in my approach to business even today (2013). While in Germany became an ardent student of the German language and went to night school with the University of Maryland; due to my unique military assignments it would take me 11 years to graduate with a bachelor degree (1988), and in the end I graduated with a double bachelors degree in Government and European Studies.
1979 – Completed my service with the Army (11/79) and returned to go back to college at Florida Junior College, Jacksonville, Florida. // Now known as Florida Community College … no one seems to like the word ‘junior’.
1980 – Joined the Reagan campaign after Reagan’s November 1979 announcement that he was running for president. Would spend 1980 as a College Coordinator for the North Florida region. One of my treasures is a very nicely engraved invitation to President Reagan’s inauguration.
1981 – Army life beckoned and rejoined the Army (1/81). While going to college and working in the Reagan campaign I met a very special person. We married in February 1981 at Tom Green County, Texas (Goodfellow AFB). Military life is not always conducive to a close and continuing family life and we divorced in late 1983. Life happens. March 1981, assigned to the 407th ASA Company, 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment, Fort Bliss, Texas.
1982 – Reassigned to the 326th ASA Company, 307th ASA Battalion, VII Corps at Augsburg, Germany in June.
1983 – Reassigned to a remote ‘listening post’ formally known as Detachment S, 326th ASA Company, Bischofsgruen, Germany in the Fichtelgebirge mountains. This was an extreme hardship tour as the local town was homebase to a year round Olympic skijumping training center known as the Ochsenkopf. Life was tough but somehow I survived. I also learned how to ski both crosscountry and downhill thanks to fellow soldier and a friend even today: Rick Morgan. // Our unit was redesignated to the 511th Military Intelligence Battalion (CEWI) in 1984.
1985 – Applied for acceptance as a Military Intelligence Warrant Officer, MOS 982A (1/85). Was accepted and reported for schooling at Fort Sill, Oklahoma (2/85). Would also attend schooling at Fort Huachuca, Arizona (5/85) and at Fort Devens, Massachusetts (8/85). Received commissioning as a Chief Warrant Officer 2 (CWO2) in September 1985, and reported for duty to Fort George G. Meade, Maryland in October. Unit: 741st Military Intelligence Battalion. Added a new foreign language to my repertoire as a graduate of the National Cryptologic School in Russian.
1988 – Reassigned to U.S. Army Field Station, Misawa, Japan (10/88). Unit: 750th Military Intelligence Battalion. Graduated from University of Maryland (11/88) with a double bachelor degree in European Studies and Government.
1989 – Met and married Yoko Yauchi of Fukushima-ken. We met when I couldn’t find a place to sit down and the only available chair was next to her (6/89). Chatting commenced. Dating followed. We married in December 1989, have two wonderful sons and will celebrate yet another wedding anniversary as of December 2013.
1992 – Core member of the team that helped restructure the independent operations of the separate military service intelligence operations at Misawa, Japan into a joint operations unit: Misawa Cryptologic Operations Center (MCOC), renamed in 2003 to the Misawa Security Operations Center.
1994 – Selected as an investigative team member for the Army Chief of Staff’s Modern Louisiana Maneuvers project. My mission was to review select Army intelligence operations in Korea. After mission completion I returned to my duties at Misawa, Japan.
1995 – Reported for Advanced Warrant Officer Schooling at Fort Huachuca, Arizona in January. Reassigned in March to the U.S. Army Intelligence and Security Command (INSCOM) Headquarters at Fort Belvoir, Virginia. Was responsible for managing the technology systems and upgrades to U.S. Army Field Station Korea within the Force Modernization Directorate.
1996 – Retired from the Army on April 1st, 1996. Began life as a defense contractor in Rosslyn, Virginia with Pacific Sierra Research Corporation as a contracted Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) liaison to the NSA.
1997 – Started a web recruiting website as a hobby in April: Virtual Domain Systems Analyst (VDSA) Information and Intelligence Skills Database (IISD). This was a first of a kind searchable database of professionals with security clearances. Kept my day job as a defense contractor. Graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree. My dissertation was on Freedom of Religion in Public Schools.
1998 – Moved to IET, Inc. (Information Extraction Technology), also in Rosslyn, Virginia, as a Senior SIGINT Analyst responsible for creating Bayesian Logic models for Signals Intelligence and Multi-Intelligence inputs for problem solving in an information fusion environment.
1999 – My hobbyist recruiting website continues. Growing in popularity. Paying customers! I reregistered the name as IntelligenceCareers.com (6/99). My success as a defense contractor is growing too. August 5th comes the announcement that my proposal for the use of Bayesian logic to develop a predictive human resources acquisition tool for the Navy wins a year of R&D money.
Backstory: Unfortunately, the Clinton Administration was in a federal budget fight with Congress and all program money was put on hold. Am told that the money should be turned back on within 90 days. I put all of my energy into moving IntelligenceCareers.com from a hobby to being a full-time company — was successful — still at it in 2013 so it was a pretty good choice.
2000 – Incorporated IntelligenceCareers.com as an S Corporation in Virginia (6/2000).
During the government shutdown, the Department of Defense will have no legal authority to pay any personnel – military or civilian – for the days during which the government is shut down. The shutdown will not affect payments to retirees and annuitants as those funds come from a retirement trust fund. Below is the effect the government shutdown will have on active duty military, civilian personnel, retirees and annuitants, and DoD contractors.
Attention: We are aware the President has signed the “Pay Our Military Act.” We are awaiting further guidance from the Department of Defense to ensure we accurately implement all elements of the Act. We will update you with additional information as soon as possible. Thanks for your patience.
Military: Active, Reserve, and National Guard members will be paid on time for pay entitlements earned September 30 or earlier. Military members cannot be paid for duty performed after the expiration of the current CRA on September 30. Once another CRA or an appropriations act is signed into law, normal disbursement of military pay will resume.
Bill Golden, CEO of IntelligenceCareers.com, sez:
No, they are not reneging. They are making a simple statement of fact.
Yes, the troops will eventually get paid, and probably will get paid on time but … the U.S. government runs out of money o/a October 17th, 2013 per a letter from the Treasury to Congress … with or without there being a SHUTDOWN.
Based upon the taxes collected and expected within the pipeline, the U.S. GOV can pay only about 60% of all authorized expenditures that are on the books. So 40% of something will have to go unpaid.
Bombers, ships or paychecks? Social Security, interest payments on the national debt or ? Someone will need to send money.
The entire crux of the federal budget battle/government shutdown/national debt talks is that we have obligated far more debt than we can pay for.
Being authorized to pay something does not mean that it will be paid.
Sorry. It is what it is … and we have about 12 more days to find out what ‘it’ is …
GOV SHUTDOWN – This isn’t some damn game … umm, yes it is: Extortion and Brinkmanship
On October 4th, Friday morning at a press conference, House Speaker John Boehner said: ”This isn’t some damn game” in supposed response to Democratic utterances that they were winning the battle of public perceptions.
Yes, yes it is a game. All political maneuverings are a game. It is the very core nature of politics to create winners and losers via gaming the system to get what you want and to deny something to someone else. Upon occasion there is the pursuit of a win-win approach, but that appears to be nowhere in our shortterm future. Pursuit of win-win requires that our representatives be so balanced in their representation that both sides must seek out allies across their aisle in order to achieve their own objectives.
Both of the major parties are playing this as a game. And in my opinion they should: there are some very important principles at play and someone needs to lose to overcome unlimited stalemate.
Passing ‘GO’ without landing in trouble:
Democrats: You got what you wanted: ACA/Obamacare. You have had plenty of time to prepare for it. There are lots of tweaks that should have been made. You should have been making some allies — yes, makings friends with folks that think you are a cootie-machine isn’t easy … but there are lots of valid points of criticism that were easy to anticipate. You have let President Obama carry the water for you in using his executive authority to tweak aspects of ACA. Bad on you. However, if you let the horde at the front gate knock down the doors then you should expect unlimited mayhem and ever more challenges to everything imaginable. … You have the ability to hold your breath and to win this one. However, if you want to be taken seriously in 2014 you now need to show that you can build budgets, manage and reduce the national debt, and recognize the concerns of Main Street … else brinkmanship will return as our debt spirals ever upward. As for brinkmanship: you do have a plan if the GOP put themselves on life support and refuse to compromise? Don’t you? You do have some negotiating points upon your sleeve … don’t you?
Republicans: You say that you just want a one year delay of Obamacare so that we can discuss the law and work things out. Hardly. You want the delay so that you have a chance to make it a 2014 election issue and hope that you can stoke the anger factor as in 2010 and take back both houses of Congress. It is a wonderfully simple plan: buy some time, grow your stock of weapons, and then prepare to bludgeon the opposition at a time of your own choosing. There is no reason to believe that the GOP reallys wants compromise. Capitulation but not compromise is your goal. … Remember ‘Repeal and Replace’? There was never a ‘Replace’ plan put out there for us to consider — or any ‘Replace’ plan that even carried the support of a simple majority of Republicans. … I know that you don’t see it this way but you are engaged in a game of extortion: give us what we want or we will shut it down. All of it. … Redistricting due to 2010’s census will make your place in the House somewhat secure in the 2014 elections but by November 2013 I seriously doubt that the great majority of Americans are going to view you as being on their side. Enough of the extortion. Do your constitutional job and pass appropriations bills that reflect what you will pay for or not. Send the individual appropriations bills forward. You only finalized four (4) FY2014 appropriations bills within the House — you are in no position to talk about fiscal responsibility and fulfilling constitutional obligations.
My expectation at this point is that the federal government shutdown will not be resolved before we get into the national debt fight, and we will essentially go into default on our national debt.
It is what it is. No telling what it will turn out to be.
ACA / ObamaCare and employers that dump employees … NOT always a bad thing
Bill Golden, CEO of IntelligenceCareers.com and USAJobZoo.com has some thoughts:
There is a lot of misinformation and misunderstanding about who is covered by the Affordable Care Act (ACA), better known as ObamaCare.
The ACA rule for whether you need to buy coverage is simple: if you have ANY FORM of insurance then you are already covered. There is no need to do anything new or different. ANY FORM means Medicaid, Medicare, TRICARE, private insurance, whatever.
About Employers Dumping Employees
There are two categories of employers dumping their own coverage plans:
— Too Bad, So Sad Dumpers: dumping their insurance plans and telling their employees to depend upon Obamacare. No extra money provided. While some employers have been getting in the news for doing this, it would seem per the evidence (this info is collected each month as part of the payroll process reported to state agencies) that this is not a significant trend. Significant meaning more than a 1-2% increase over prior years when employers just dumped employees and they were left with absolutely no options other than public assistance.
In many cases these dumped employees can get ACA coverage cheaper than what they paid out of their paycheck for employer-provided coverage … and they have more choices and options now. This could end up putting more money in their pockets plus have the freedom to leave their employers once they find a better job, without the need to worry about their healthcare coverage.
— The Good Guy Dumpers: An unintended consequence of Obamacare is that it may well indeed be cheaper than what many employers can negotiate on their own. So there are employers that are telling their employees that they will need to use ObamaCare … BUT these employers are covering the costs of the plan and sometimes even kicking in a little extra to help with the copays. This is actually a very good thing. Sometimes you can improve the bottom line while also doing good for your workers at the same time. A more financially secure employer means greater chances for longterm collection of paychecks.
While neither of these employers may have intent to do so, these employers are essentially making the argument that healthcare coverage should indeed be universal, portable and not tied to any condition of employment. They are making the case for programs like the ACA as being needed for the modern workforce to thrive and to survive … whether they meant to send this message or not.
You provide an incredible public service. If only other organizations worked as hard as you do at providing a public forum for meaningful meeting with candidates and discussion of public issues.
However, you need to immediately review your awkward policy on allowing bloggers to cover your events. Bloggers are media whether you like it or not. Bloggers undoubtedly bring more attention to your events and to your issues than most regular media will or probably can. Local traditional media is not exactly known for much more than covering car accidents, kittens in trees and the occasional zoning debate … as long the debate can be concluded within two to three paragraphs.
You need to make nice. An apology to Greq Letiecq should be on your list of things to do.
Greq wrote a critique of his experience at the October 2nd Committee of 100 candidates forum. I realize that Greg is not most folk’s cup of tea. The word journalism and journalist probably does not come to mind when his name or his blog comes up in conversation. Get over it. Greg is a player. He has an audience. Your mission is to provide a forum for the public — bloggers engage the public at far greater levels and often do so daily.
Greg made some great points in his critique.
You also have another alternative: ban all media as a non-attribution event and also ban all cellphone cameras, and cameras in general.
So what are you going to do? The new century started 13 years ago. Times have changed. Bloggers are a prominent component of modern media.
About Letiecq’s critique: Get over it. Apologize. Join the present future.