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Congress, Administration lecture USPS on fiscal responsibility, but are now “borrowing” your TSP savings?

Politicians love to bash postal workers and the US Postal Service, despite the fact that opinion polls consistently show that the public has a much higher opinion of the post office than they do of, say, Congressmen. (Then again, maybe that’s why some politicians hate postal workers! )

All of which makes it so ironic that as of today, the Federal Government, crippled by the politicians’ inability to do their jobs, is borrowing the retirement nest eggs of postal workers and other federal employees to keep the government running. Yes, it’s true- Dennis Ross and Darrell Issa may think you’re overpaid, but when they get their paychecks next week, the money will come out of your Thrift Savings Plan:

Today, the United States will reach the statutory debt limit. Secretary Geithner sent the following letter to Congress this morning alerting them to actions that have be taken to create additional headroom under the debt limit so that Treasury can continue funding obligations made by Congresses past and present. The Secretary declared a "debt issuance suspension period" for the Civil Service Retirement and Disability Fund, permitting Treasury to redeem a portion of existing Treasury securities held by that fund as investments and suspend issuance of new Treasury securities to that fund as investments. He also suspended the daily reinvestment of Treasury securities held as investments by the Government Securities Investment Fund of the Federal Employees’ Retirement System Thrift Savings Plan. For more information on these measures, please read this FAQ.

And yes, according to the law, your TSP will be made whole afterwards (at least according to the current law), but the cynicism that allows politicians to engage in this kind of childish brinksmanship using your money is pretty amazing.

via As US Reaches Debt Limit, Geithner Implements Additional Extraordinary Measures to Allow Continued Funding of Government Obligations.

  • oh come on

    really, So I am going to be broke when i retire now. After years of putting away now they just take it away. I should have gone bankrupt instead of saving and NOT wanting to live of the goverment.

  • brian

    Not really- if you read the FAQ, they’ve put us through this charade several times before. Unless they do something really stupid (which is, of course, not out of the question!), your retirement will be safe. The problem is Congressmen who act like a bunch of ten year olds with self-esteem issues running the country!

  • don

    They just talk, and do nothing at all

  • oh come on

    I know….but as the artical says “at least according to the current law” they have to pay back and we all know it just takes a swipe of the pen to change that.

  • Mike

    Everyone in the TSP with money in the G-fund should move it out to C, I or S for a few weeks and see how that works out for the buffoons.

  • Scout

    Vote them out of a job and see how fast they correct things.

  • Rich

    Any problem must be addressed at the root. Example: high blood pressure is masked by medicine but the problem has not been fixed. This is true in almost anything that you can think of. There is a root cause that is not being addressed. The root problem with government and politicians is the American people. We have ignorant, uneducated, uninformed, and brainwashed Americans electing politicians that give the people that voted for them exactly what they elected them for, then these same people that voted for these politicians want to know why they are taking things away from them. First of all stop complaining you voted for them without researching how they were going to affect you and your families livlihood. You have no right to complain!! If you lose everything well maybe that thick skull of yours will learn. For those that this message pertains to and you know who you are, if you haven’t learned any lessons from the assault on the working people while giving the rich all of the breaks you are never going to learn. One day you will be broke and poor and still blame it on the wrong party. That folks is a severe case of denial. Here’s one example of how ignorant constituents are. George Bush and his administration along with the majority of the Democrats vote put us in two wars both we are finding out now were not needed. Here’s where the ignorance comes in. They cut taxes. How in God’s name do you fight two wars and lower taxes. I’ll tell you how, it doesn’t affect the politicians in Washington whom most are already well off. As you can tell they are coming to get your retirement, salary, health benefits, any bargaining rights that you may have and any thing else they can think of to pay down the deficit created by this ignorance except to raise taxes on the wealthy which most if all politicians are. One party wants to help the middle class, one wants to help the rich, one wants government completely eliminated. Which group of these do you fall into? If you work for the government then aside complete ignorance and denial you are not in the last group so you shouldn’t vote for these politicians. If you work for the government and are not filthy (millionare)rich then you shouldn’t vote for the second group. If you work for the government and are most likely a middle class blue collar worker then the first group would be the politicians that you should vote for. Its really that easy people why make it so difficult. This is where these parties stand period so either you are just ignorant or in denial. Whatever the case if you are voting for the wrong party based on your family and financial needs which do go hand in hand you are putting yourself and your family in jeopardy. Stop listening to all the bull around you. It all comes down to the things I mentioned above. You are in one of these groups you just have to decide which one and vote accordingly. If this stepped on your toes it was meant to wake you up and think for a change. There have been several bills that have been introduced into legislation that if your are a government employee you are going to be in for a disasterous surprise if they pass. Remember you get what you ask for or in this case vote for.

  • Steve

    Let us get one thing straight; you can say politicians without the qualifier, it is Republican politicians like Isaa and Ross. I cannot help but to think that some of their anti postal comes from racism. The same racism these tea party types have against Obama. They cannot stand to think that minorites in high numbers in the USPS can hold good paying jobs. Just like they cannot stand that our U.S. president can also be classified as a racial minority.

  • you got to be kidding

    i don’t remember giving them my permission to take my money.
    what rate of interest or return are you going to give me.
    i want 30% the US is a bad credit risk, and does not deserve a prime
    rate to borrow at. if fact it looks like a sinking ship, going down.
    down, down , down,

  • T Vraniak

    I have said many times, as far as the USPS condition goes, it boils down to several congressional mandated issues:

    1. We have overfunded our retirement somewhere between $50-$70- BILLION DOLLARS- (show us the money)

    2. Since 2006, we have had to Congressionally mandated PRE-FUND an already overfunded retirement system to the tune of $3-$5 BILLION dollars. Actual financial figures not counting this prefunding shows the USPS making a profit for at least the last three years of that time. (show us the money)

    3. Since 1996, the USPS has had to fund the Congressionally mandated -Office of the Inspector General (OIG) budget. Until recently this came directly out of the USPS budget, now Congress bill the USPS once per year. This is also a duplication of effort the way that they are currently used, since the USPS also pays for the Postal Inspection Service ( the oldest federal agency in the USPS The OIG should only be looking at the big picture for congress and let the internal workings still be with the Postal Inspection Service. (show us the money)

    4. Congress has mandated SOX (Sarbanes Oxley). Why? We are not a publicly traded company. Our own in house financial rules were actually tighter then (SOX)
    (show us the money)

    Each of these items has placed a heavy financial burden on the USPS by Congress, which has become a way of taxing the American Public w/o their consent. This has been done at the same time while blaming the USPS workers as being the cause of where the USPS is now.

    There is a Code of Conduct required of all employees and Congressional representatives and I do not think that lying or creating a false pretex or situation at the expense of the workers fits into that Code. There is also a Code of Ethics for ALL government workers regardless of their status/level within that government. Not only do I believe in these Codes, I expect that of the officials that I answer to also. We all should expect that. Let Congress give back to the USPS what is rightfully theirs first, then if we do not act responsible; work on fixing us. I do not think the USPS is the problem at this time.

  • Retired PM

    Gee…………If a private company raided their employees retirement fund to keep it afloat would’nt that be criminal?
    If i borrowed money from the USPS , I’d not only have to pay it back , I’d go to prison !!

  • TruthSayer

    Steve, why do you have to take a simple economic arguement and turn it into racism. Sheesh. Get back on track and get your mind out of the gutter.

    This is just a product of irresponsible government that can’t pay it’s bills because of demogaguery.

  • Mark

    It’s not racism. It’s called Fascism. Get used to it.

  • Mike

    To T vraniak: The USPS is the only government agency with direct access to the american wallet. We overfund CSRS and FERS by design to make up for the underfunding by all other agencies. We fund at about 130% while the others fund at about 50% but that puts the total retirement funding at close to the 70% recommended by the actuarial people. The 5.2 billion dollars is monies that go directly to the general fund and needs no tax to generate it, so the USPS raises the price of stamps to pay for it. As for SOX we lost a court challenge to Fedex and UPS because we directly compete with them on priority, overnight and parcel delivery. They had to comply with SOX and the courts ruled that we too must comply. The same thing happened with OSHA. So the bottom line is the USPS is the sponsor of a stamp tax perpitrated on the American public.

  • bubba

    hey ross and issa leave my money alone you boneheads