There are two million civilian federal workers. 1.1 million of them have direct private sector equivalents. And they are laughing their asses off at those private sector suckers, who are doing similar jobs for less pay—often a lot less.
"Accountants, nurses, chemists, surveyors, cooks, clerks and janitors are among the wide range of jobs that get paid more on average in the federal government than in the private sector," according to a USA Today report. In jobs where there are private equivalents, the feds are earning $7,645 more on average than their private counterparts.
(Private sector beat out feds in jobs where there are very high barriers to entry due to licensing requirements or powerful unions, such as lawyers, veterinarians, and airline pilots.)
These figures so depressed the folks at USA Today, they couldn't even be bothered to whip up one of their usual gratuitously colorful charticles. But here's a chunk of the side-by-side comparison. Click on it to see the whole list.
Note that the figures above are salaries and don't include the value of benefits, which averaged $40,785 per federal employee in 2008 vs. $9,882 per private worker.