Barack Obama

Janitors Getting Pay Cuts: Another Obama Sequester Lie

And the president, high ranking government officials, and members of Congress definitely not taking a pay cut


clueless on janitors and jedi
White House

At a press conference yesterday, President Obama was asked about New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg's comment that the sequester wasn't a "big deal." The president replied that while Bloomberg may not feel the impact, others would. Like janitors. The president:

"Starting tomorrow, everybody here, cleaning the floors at the Capitol. They're going to have less pay. The janitors, the security guards. They just got a pay cut. They've got to figure out how to manage that. That's real."

In fact, it's not real. It's so not real the Washington Post gave the comment four pinocchios, reporting that the Architect of the Capitol had to respond by stressing that neither janitors nor security guards are getting pay cuts and that no furloughs are expected for Capitol Hill employees at all due to sequester.

Who else isn't getting a paycut? Barack Obama, other high ranking government officials, and members of Congress, though it'd probably be a crowd pleaser. Instead the president and his men (and women) are whipping up fear about furloughed air traffic controllers and laid-off teachers (much of it also not true).

More Reason on the sequester, and don't forget to take advantage of Reason's special sequestration sale.

NEXT: Obama Still Pressing Congress for Deal on Sequester

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Shocking

    1. I know. WaPo criticizing the Annointed One. What next? Krugman being coherent?

      End times, my friend.

      1. We’ll see what happens next year when the Hillary starts running for queen.

        1. I don’t know, I’m not sure the serfs are ready for a female lord just yet.

          1. Isn’t a female lord sort of like a square circle?

            1. I’m sure there are plenty of people that would love to get Hillary in the squared circle though

  2. Barack Obama is a disingenuous douchnozzle. A mendacious shitbag. A liar.

    In other news the sky is blue and water is wet.

    1. A Haiku to honor our dear leader:

      Budgets, one so far
      Golf, more than one hundred rounds
      Priorities, What?

      1. Excellent

      2. Also, Math is hard.

        1. No. Math is hard after 7th grade. Up until 7th grade he’s cool though.

  3. Now that BO is safely ensconced in the White House for four more years, the fact checkers feel free to actually do their jobs. Better late than never.

    1. Yeah, slow down… The WaPo calling Obama out on this little fib is like someone giving him a friendly noogie… It’s the media equivalent of “Oh YOU!”

      A real “calling out” would be the Washington Post calling Obama a liar every time he used the word “cut” in relation to the sequester.

  4. “Instead the president and his men (and women) are whipping up fear about furloughed air traffic controllers and laid-off teachers (much of it also not true).”

    I remember when the air traffic controllers got fired.

    Things started getting better after that.

  5. “Whatever else history may say about me when I’m gone, I hope it will record that I appealed to your best hopes, not your worst fears.”

    —-Ronald Reagan, Farewell Address

    “You never want a serious crisis to go to waste.”

    —-Rahm Immanuel, Barack Obama’s Chief of Staff

    We’ve had so much fear mongering for so long, it’s hard for people to remember what it was like when the president wasn’t governing by trying to scare the shit out of everyone.

    1. Kill italics Shazzam!

      1. This is why there are no html-coding female libertarians.

        1. And we need more of them!

          I’ll try harder.

          This would all go away if they fixed the damn preview button.

          Forcing people to edit themselves in what amounts to type pad–it’s like expecting me to design a webpage in type pad.

          It’s wrong. Just plain wrong.

          1. I’ve never had a problem with the preview button.

            H&R has a lot of other problems such as being a memory hog and those fucking antisocial networking buttons trying to load themselves when they’re in the viewport, and the page not showing up where one’s posted comment is when it loads the comment. But for me, the preview button hasn’t been one of the problems.

            1. Yeah, we hate you too Ted.

        2. My wife says that any self-respecting female libertarian (like her) uses php. HTML is for stupid old farts like me.

          1. Feh. Language is irrelevant as long as you code it in vi.

    2. In the 1984 presidential debate, Ronald Reagan asked Walter Mondale to please stop scaring the elderly about losing their Social Security checks, so we know that scare tactic is at least thirty years old.

      1. Oh, fear mongering goes back as long as democracy, but not all presidents have been fear mongers–and some fear mongers are worse than others.

        George W. Bush and Barack Obama have been some of the worst fear mongers we’ve had. For 12 years, the primary toll of presidential governance has been fear mongering–and I’d just like everyone who’s become politically aware over the last 12 years to know that it wasn’t always like this.

        1. “For 12 years, the primary [tool] of presidential governance has been fear mongering.”

          …but you probably already knew that.

        2. Yeah I was a kid in the Clinton years and I remember the politics weas stupid, but I don’t remember it being this shrill and chicken littly.

          1. It’s just been crisis management stacked on top of crisis management–going back to 9/11. And the crises today aren’t really that much different from the crises of the past.

            9/11 is a crisis–and if you don’t let me do whatever I want, then you’re not sufficiently frightened.

            The mortgage collapse is a crisis–and if you don’t let me do whatever I want, then you’re not sufficiently frightened.

            Sandy Hook is a crisis–and if you don’t let me do whatever I want…

            The sequester is a crisis–and you’re not sufficiently frightened if you don’t let me do whatever I want!

            9/11 was a crisis, but the proper reaction to a crisis is not to panic and let the president do whatever he wants. One of worst president’s ever once made the statement, “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself”, and as rotten a president as he was, at least he was on point about that.

            Fear is the Mind-Killer.

            Fear makes people stupid. The president tries to make people scared because he wants them to be complacent. That’s a shitty way to lead people. Bush was rotten about that, too. He turned cowardice on its head–suddenly, the manly men were supposedly the ones who were afraid of terrorists, etc. Being afraid used to be something to be ashamed of. Maybe we need to start bringing the “coward” back into fashion.

            Maybe then people would start being ashamed of their fear again–like they should be.

            1. “Maybe we need to start bringing the [word] “coward” back into fashion.”

              But you probably already knew that.

              Incidentally, I’m afraid Reason’s never gonna fix the preview button.

              1. Cable news has also helped contribute to this climate of fear. This is especially true vis a vis crime. We are at a 4 decade low in terms of violent crime but I can tell you from working the streets, that the perception amongst the average joe on the street does not reflect that. By filling the 24 hr news cycle with local violent crime stories and placing them on a national stage, a perception is created that violent crime is out of control, when the reality is the exact opposite.

                Granted, there is a rational perception of fear of many crimes, like in neighborhoods being hit by burglars, we will get them calling in suspicious persons on solicitors etc. understandably concerned about casing.

                But when it comes to general safety, if you told them that they are safer now (from violent crime) than they’ve been in the last 40 yrs, people would have a hard time believing that.

                Heck, I would argue does the same thing with police stuff. They have H&R entries on various cop (alleged) excesses, and create a narrative about increasing cop militarism, etc. but I don’t recall in any of these articles seeing actual stats about are police shootings going up per capita, remaining constant or trending down? Similar holes in reporting on UOF incidents. Clearly, there has been success in creating a perception that raids are more and more common, etc. etc.

                1. Don’t know about cable news, but the CBS affilitate in Philly led the 6pm news four nights in a row with some lowlife being murdered. Sure makes you want to walk the streets, right?

                2. We are at a 4 decade low in terms of violent crime

                  If only the number of police could be at a four-decade low.

                3. This matches my experience. Most of my friends believe that violence and drugs are out of control and getting worse every day. Left or right makes no difference. One particularly obnoxious progressive who actually has a PhD in the made-up field of alternative dispute resolution (read inner city youth and gangs) thinks that black people are being lynched by the thousands every year, and it is only getting worse.

              2. I thought you were talking about Noel Coward.

              3. Ken, the preview button started to work for me when I removed the link to my e-mail address in my handle.

                1. Same here.

                2. Well there should be a user manual!

                  And how will I get my fan mail?

              4. “Maybe we need to start bringing the [word] “coward” back into fashion.”

                I’m going with craven.

            2. I often wonder where we’d be today if the day after 9/11 Bush had gone on teh teeeveee and said, “let’s show these cocksuckers they cannot win by getting on airplanes tomorrow”?

              We needed a leader and we got a politician.

              1. Have to take issue with this. Bush’s words and actions immediately after 9/11 were nearly perfect. He told the American people to

                1. Get back to business
                2. Don’t blame Muslims
                3. Reinforce cockpit doors
                4. Don’t allow hijackers to hijack

                All good advice. Just imagine what BO would have done in the aftermath to take advantage.

                1. Yeah, I had no issue with Bush after 9/11. His administration didn’t get absurd until later.

                  I have no idea what Obama would have done with that opportunity.

                2. Yeah, but then, after the anthrax attack, he went way off on a scare monger tangent.


                  Average people used to talk about how Al Qaeda was going to take over the United States and fit us into the world caliphate. These people should have been ashamed of themselves, but when the president of the United States is spreading fear, it makes it seem like it’s okay to be afraid. Somehow fear turned into bravery…

                  The brave people were the people who were so thoroughly scared by [insert whatever] that they were willing to support whatever the president wanted? That’s the justification for Iraq War, TARP, ObamaCare, Wall Street regulation, gun control, and every other damn thing Bush or Obama has tried to do. Even Bush’s justification for the the Medicare prescription drug benefit expansion was that–if you don’t support me on this, then you’re not sufficiently afraid of the Democrats.

                  1. Hahaha. That article is a trip down the memory hole, especially the part where they mention Bush’s 62 percent approval rating. Remember when his approval rating was up around 75% shortly after 9/11?

                  2. Average people used to talk about how Al Qaeda was going to take over the United States and fit us into the world caliphate.

                    And this has what to do with the president? He was explicitly saying that Islam is not the problem.

                    1. Yea. If anything he bent over too far backwards in that regards, since EXTREMIST Islam certainly was the problem. Even some lefties like Chris Hitchens were on board with that. Bush was all about “religion of peace” etc. at the time.

                    2. Right after the attack, he took pains to say that Islam wasn’t the problem–but after that initial reasonableness? All bets were off.

                      If you’re complaining about warrantless wiretapping, then you aren’t sufficiently afraid.

                      If you’re complaining about torture, then you aren’t sufficiently afraid.

                      What he said immediately after the attack was countervailed by the seven years of fear mongering after that.

                      “And this has what to do with the president? He was explicitly saying that Islam is not the problem.”

                      Once you start feeding people a steady diet of fear, and repeat it over and over again, it has an affect on people in all sorts of ways–and it makes them do, support, and believe stupid things. I’ve never seen a great leader encourage his people to panic.

                3. Bush was a weepy pussy after 9/11. The only way to handle terror is with defiance. His demeanor told people it was all right to be afraid. It wasn’t. We didn’t fly for like 10 days, proving to the world that the terrorists accomplished their objective. And then we turned around and spent billions upon billions of dollars (TSA/airport security) on a “problem” that solved itself less than an hour after it became a problem.

                  On the 10th anniversary of Britain’s subway bombing, the Brits went out and rode the subways in defiance. Essentially flipping the bird to the fuckstains that threatened their way of life. If only we had their courage.

                  Sorry Tulpa, you are wrong yet again. But being a card carrying member of Team Red, I can understand you feeling it more important to take advantage of the political opportunity than do right by the nation.

            3. Re: Ken Shultz,

              Fear makes people stupid.

              Fear makes people stupid,
              Envy turns them into assholes.

              Hey! That’s Tony in a nutshell!

              1. It’s Obama in a nutshell, too.

                It’s just that instead of making terrorists the object of the American people’s fear, he’s trying to make the American people afraid of entrepreneurs, the wealthy, and Republicans.

                But you’re right about Tony. It’s just that Tony buys all Obama’s fear mongering like so many Americans were afraid the terrorists were going to take over the United States and make our women wear burkas.

          2. No attack ever fed a starving child.

            1. Except by potato-gun.

  6. ..the Architect for the Capitol, which employs Capitol Hill janitors on the House side. (The Sargent-at-Arms employs the janitorial staff on the Senate side.)

    Clearly there’s room to cut something.

  7. A brain fart from Dana Milbank:…..story.html

    Lost in all the intrigue: $85 billion in government spending was about to be sucked out of the struggling U.S. economy, everybody agreed the cuts were stupid; and nobody in Washington was doing anything to fix the problem.

    They really think wealth originates in government spending, is then spread out to the banks and businesses to eventually wind up in the hands of the groveling masses.

    1. “They really think wealth originates in government spending, is then spread out to the banks and businesses to eventually wind up in the hands of the groveling masses.”

      They really do.

      They think economic growth comes from government spending.

      Keynes was nowhere near as stupid as the left makes him seem. As wrong as he was–he didn’t think what should be done in a liquidity trap is what should be done under normal circumstances, and if he were alive today, he would denounce all of the proposals that the left offers in his name.

      1. So would Jesus, Karl Marx, and Ronald Reagan.

        1. Mmm, not so sure about Marx.

    2. “…$85 billion in government spending was about to be sucked out of the struggling U.S. economy..”

      “They really think wealth originates in government spending..”

      One of the reasons I have difficulty talking to anyone on the left is that every time they open their mouths a hundred little question marks float around my head cartoon-style.

      Almost every premise they base their world view upon is 180 degrees from my experience in some way.

      Maybe I am wrong and they are right, but the results of their policies do not bear that out.

      1. One of the reasons I have difficulty talking to anyone on the left is that every time they open their mouths a hundred little question marks float around my head cartoon-style.

        You need to learn how to use little question marks as an alternative energy source.

        That, or train them to polish your monocle.

      2. No, they get a lot of things exactly wrong. How they see markets as zero-sum and government as participatory, for example.

    3. Doesn’t everyone following the big “S” know that the 2013 “cut” is $44billion?

      Every time someone uses $85billion, they are lying. The O’butthead still uses $85billion.

      We need that guy who yelled “Liar” at one of O’butthead’s State of the Union speeches to follow him around.

    4. Actually, the actual cuts are stupid. They should have gone through the budget and cut unneeded programs, of which there are a lot of. They shouldn’t be furloughing people. They should be firing them. Instead I honestly thinking the administration is trying to maximize the pain the public faces.

      1. Instead I honestly thinking the administration is trying to maximize the pain the public faces.

        You’re a bit late to this realization, but welcome!

        1. This is the Clinton playbook from 94. The “government shutdowns” that they told the press they would cause and then blame on the republicans closed things like national parks that didn’t have any expenses to remain open – in fact it cost something to go over and lock the gates. They made sure that there were lots of visible and loud stories about the republicans closing after-school programs and national parks.

          Same old song and dance.

  8. Fear mongering? Why should I be afraid if some DC civil servant janitor has to take a pay cut?

    If that’s supposed to scare me, he’s gonna have to troll a lot harder than that.

    1. Where I work (govt agency) the building maintenance tasks are done by contractors, who by the way are not expected to be affected by the sequestration.

    2. I think what’s supposed to be scary at this point is that people will think you’re a big meanie who wants poor people to starve if you don’t give Him what He wants.

  9. I guess Obama’s tax increases aren’t “real.”

    Mr. President, those tax increases, you didn’t raise them.

  10. This sure is crazy, dood.

    I’m going insane. All the news here is how it will affect border crossings and how all our widgets will be 20 hours late and all manufacturing will need to cease.

    1. Yet more evidence (as if any were needed) that the MSM are both stupid and in the tank for Obama.

    2. Call your Congressman and … oh, wait. You’re in DC or something.

      1. Call someone else’s Congressman, then. I’m not sure they check constituency.

  11. You know who else threatened janitor pay cuts?

    1. Judge Stone?

      1. Tyler Durden?

  12. http://fullcomment.nationalpos…

    Reason’s favorite pundit complains that Republicans are endangering US security by embracing the sequester. Love the tears. Drink the tears.

    For the masochistic among you, the comments will disappoint. Some of them are pretty clever.

    1. Frum is a fave pundit? When did that happen?

      1. Guess where my tongue is? And don’t give me any cheek about it.

        1. I would make a joke, but this is a family friendly blog.

          1. No, it’s really not.

            1. Maybe Tulpa is related to Warty so this would be family friendly for his family.

        2. It’s on Tulpa’s butt cheeks?

      2. When it was put to a vote, and he narrowly beat Amanda Marcotte.

    2. I was expecting a Heather Mallic missive. Can’t wait to see her take on this. Not.

    3. The world economy is in ruins and we face years of slow growth if we even ever make it out of this mess. The universal problem, without exception, is government spending, government deficits, government debt, and overtaxation. It has not been too much consumer or business spending or investment. The solution to the problem is always the same – governments must spend more, raise taxes, increase the debt and deficits.

      At the same time, unload a whole ton of new regulations, controls and strangleholds on business and the people. Climate change – the “thermostat-in-chief” now considers it his duty to cool the planet down and control the climate – nothing quite so vain as a liberal. Build more infrastructure to support an economy that isn’t going to grow anyhow because of the above-mentioned constraints. And now all of a sudden, everyone is going to die if they don’t have Obamacare. It is truly absurd and truly frightening the way people buy into the scams without thinking.

      From the comments. Had to quote the whole thing because all of it is true.

      1. There’s little doubt before it’s over a lot of very gullible, often well intentioned, people are going to end up getting everything they deserve. It’s just unfortunate they will drag most of the rest of the world down with them.

    4. pottedplant–} easton?3 hours ago?

      “So please square this circle with your comments?

      If Obama can just quantitatively ease a few more trillion into the economy, it will do exactly what that the previous few trillion have not?”


      (easton)–}pottedplant?2 hours ago?


      And obviously you don’t understand QE. Most of the debt is being bought by the treasury itself in order to keep long term interest rates low. They are not easing trillions more into the economy, they are not printing any additional money.


      It is like you are not even trying to write facts here.”

      Hmmm… where to start with this one..?!

  13. Does this sequester thing mean I am going to get a pay cut? After all, I’m just a civil servant sucking the govt. teat. Granted, I’m sucking a local govt. teat. The milk is sweeter and not as tainted as a federal teat. You will never hear me complain about my pay or compensation. It’s hella fair.

  14. Is it even possible for Obama to tell the truth?

  15. Wow, how messed up is that man? Not cool at all dude, Not cool at all!

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.