DC politicians wants props for not taking the entire week off for Thanksgiving

Be impressed because DC is working!

In a headline that could only have meaning inside the DC bubble, Buzzfeed editors made a routine article about negotiations for the “fiscal cliff” sound somehow impressive.

It’s not.

There is absolutely nothing sensational about the actual article, which is reporting on the latest discussions about the supposed fiscal cliff problem.

However, we’re all supposed to be impressed that President Obama’s and GOP House Speaker John Boehner’s teams are working this week to find a resolution for the so-called “fiscal cliff”, otherwise known in reality world as an “austerity bomb,” instead of just taking the entire week off for Thanksgiving, unlike most Americans who get a day off, maybe two.

I doubt many are going to be impressed that Washington has graciously lowered itself to our level, and deigned to work during a week that no one in the country gets off but Washington politicians and the unemployed.  There’s a reason why the overwhelming majority of Americans dislike Congress and give them consistently low approval ratings, and it’s because they think they’re slumming it when they’re simply doing what the rest of us have to do every day.

Thanksgiving Turkey

Turkey via Shutterstock

Should we really be impressed that the political class is taking a break from taking a break, and actually working for it’s money?  It’s not like they’re not well compensated, making upwards of $200,000 a year, and enjoying such perks as the best healthcare in America, and a retirement plan that none of us could ever hope to see.

To be completely fair to the journalist who wrote the story, there’s nothing unusual in the actual article – she did a fine job.  But in typical Buzzfeed style, someone wanted to hype the story as something special, when it’s not.  And that only feeds the notion that it is special when Washington works an honest week like the rest of us.

And maybe it is. But it shouldn’t be.


An American in Paris, France. BA in History & Political Science from Ohio State. Provided consulting services to US software startups, launching new business overseas that have both IPO’d and sold to well-known global software companies. Currently launching a new cloud-based startup. Full bio here.

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  • caphillprof

    Eleanor Holmes Norton is not the problem. I don’t have a senator.

    Subject: [americablog] Re: DC politicians wants props for not taking the entire week off for Thanksgiving

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1298856825 Joanne Equality Robrahn

    Considering they’ve had 4 years off (the Republicans, anyway), I’d say it’s about tuckin’ time!

  • A reader in Colorado

    Please let me know when you’re running. I’ll send you ten bucks, unless I’m homeless by then.

  • A reader in Colorado

    I have a small grammar note, and I bring it up only because it sets my teeth on edge due to how many times I see it: The contraction “it’s” has only one meaning: IT IS. It has no other meaning. If you mean the possessive, you have to use “its”.

    Unless you actually meant to say: “Should we really be impressed that the political class is taking a break from taking a break, and actually working for it is money?”

  • silas1898

    Exactly. Here in NJ, both parties got together and agreed to split the districts 50/50 so all of them are safe. Self-preservation trumps everything else.

  • http://www.rebeccamorn.com/mind BeccaM

    Holy crap, I need to run for Congress.

  • Naja pallida

    People say they hate Congress in general, but it’s always the other guy’s Congressperson that is the problem, it is almost never their own. It is truly stunning how Congress can be running at the same approval rating as syphilis, but individual Congress people, even those who are a large, glaringly obvious part of the problem, are still running with >50% approval ratings.

    Plus, when it comes to the House, gerrymandering generally makes it rather difficult to oust someone who doesn’t want to leave. There all too often has to be significant political shifts within the state, or some kind of serious “macaca moment”, for it to happen.

  • Naja pallida

    I’ll give them props as soon as they are 5 days a week, 8 hours a day, with the same holidays and vacation time of most other federal employees. This coming and going whenever they please, whether there’s work to be done or not, is simply pathetic.

  • franklyn

    This from Dictionary.Com:

    Special:
    distinguished or different from what is ordinary or usual: a special occasion; to fix something special.
    Don’t kill me. I’m just the messenger.

  • silas1898

    Everybody says they hate Congress, but they re-elect their own Congressman 97% of the time.

    Go figure

  • lynchie

    Some interesting facts on 2011 and the days worked. Who would not want this schedule. 90 days they are in recess, yeah I know working in the district but you can never get them on the phone only get a staffer who frankly doesn’t give a shit.

    Final Counts:

    Full working days – 137

    Travel days – 25

    Half days – 29

    RECESS DAYS – 90

    Final Tally: 137/365
    37.5% of the year is spent with a full day of working.

    http://www.spillingbuckets.com/2010/10/just-when-does-congress-work.html

    But at the end of a nice day working they get to go out with the lobbyist du jour for some steaks, nice bottle of wine and a couple of cigars. This after fillibustering some bill or voting down benefits of our Vets, or taking away some of those fucking “entitlements” they hate so much.

    Frankly most of us would donate a kidney to get these kind of work schedule and the additional perks.

  • Drew2u

    Have you called/emailed/contacted your congresspersons?
    (how about you, other people reading this?)

  • Drew2u

    Here, I thought you had a picture of Mitch McConnel, until I read you found it on shutterstock.

  • caphillprof

    The so called fiscal cliff is class warfare of the highest order. Take away their social security and medical care so the uber wealthy can all be gazillionaires.

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