No Furloughs For NASA

It’s achieving an apparent miracle:

If these warnings, and others coming out of the Obama administration, are to be believed, NASA has pulled off an impressive, if not impossible, feat. But on the other hand, are we really to believe it is the only agency capable of doing so?

I’m going to be supremely cynical here, and suggest that Bolden isn’t being pressured to do this as other agency heads are, because no one cares whether or not NASA shuts down. It doesn’t cause any political pain, as some of the other measures (e.g., TSA reductions) will, so he’s being left alone to manage as best he can.

15 thoughts on “No Furloughs For NASA

  1. RS

    Apparently the White House feels that cuts at NASA would not terrify and anger enough people. Or perhaps just an oversight, there is still time to turn off the Mars rovers and send the operators home (on camera, of course).

    1. rickl

      Oh God, don’t give him any ideas.

      Strangely enough, I haven’t heard of any layoffs of EPA regulators.

  2. Nemo

    Note that NASA only says there will be no furloughs for “NASA employees”. I suspect this is possible because NASA has a higher percentage of contractors as compared to career civil servants. Sequester will have impacts to contractors.

    1. Edward Wright

      FTEs are less than a quarter of NASA’s workforce.

      I’ve been hearing for months that furloughs would only affect contractors, not direct NASA employees. This merely confirms that.

      Some good news: It appears that sequestration and furloughs will affect the legislative branch as well.

      Bad new: They will not affect Congressmen. But Congressional aides will be getting furloughed.

      I can think of some Senate staffers who desperately need some time off.

      1. Edward Wright

        A related thought: wouldn’t it be a good idea to have term limits for Congressional staffers, as well as Congressmen?

        1. John Schilling

          What do we imagine happens to congressional staffers when their term expires? More importantly, what do we imagine happens when congressional staffers look forward to their term expiring in the near future?

          The most effective form of political lobbying, as I understand it, is not bribing congressmen with campaign contributions. It is bribing congressional staffers with expense-account lunches, pre-written position papers, and implied promises of jobs as political lobbyists themselves when the time comes.

          So, the traditional brand of term limits, no, I don’t think so. Junior staffers are the most easily impressed by the goodies, most in need of help preparing their briefings, and if they know they only have a few years to position themselves for a lucrative lobbying position…

          Rather, I might like to change the default entry to congressional staff position from “college intern” to “retired professor”. This would give congress a higher grade of advice, provide greatly enhanced immunity to deceptive or dishonest lobbying (but not to the honest sort), and provide de facto term limits via the Grim Reaper.

          I, of course, have no idea how to go about implementing that change.

          1. Der Schtumpy

            “I, of course, have no idea how to go about implementing that change.”

            Horses.

            Ropes.

            Trees.

            Picnic lunches.

    1. Karl Hallowell

      ken, this sounds like the build up to a war that everyone thinks they’re going to win easily. I doubt anyone is in panic mode right now.

  3. Charles Lurio

    It’s simple, our amazing friends at NASA have developed a warp drive so their employees will think they’re working 5 days a week when they’re only working four.

  4. Der Schtumpy

    A.) I think both sides are equally to blame.

    B.) I think the America VOTERS are more to blame than the idiots they elect.

    C.) ANY organization, that thinks it’s managers, leaders, bean counters etc, cannot find 2.4% in waste, who can’t tighten up and keep running with 97.6% of their budget, SHOULD fire said managers, leaders….

    In the last two years, my wife’s insurance and taxes have gone up about 4% of her net salary. That drop doesn’t include nor take into account the rise in price of damned near everything we need so as to eat regularly and live indoors. I know plenty of working people with educations and pretty good jobs who are seeing those same types of decline in income, weighed against across the board price increases.

    And yet, I don’t know anyone who has, nor have I seen one picture on TV nor in the newspapers of people running down the street naked, with their hair on fire, screaming, “Sequestration, Sequestration, Sequestration…we’re all gonna DIE from the Sequestration!!!!”.

    [in the 1960′s Arlo or Dylan or John Sebastion would have written the “Sequestration Blues” and it would be on every radio station.

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