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Federal Employees News Digest : Jan. 21, 2013
INSIGHT by Mike Causey continued from page 1 Kristi Dougherty General Manager Phil Piemonte Managing Editor Sherkiya Wedgeworth Online Managing Editor Becky Fenton Circulation Manager Nathan Abse Writer Mike Causey Columnist Edward Zurndorfer Columnist Published by 1105 Government Information Group, Anne Armstrong, President. 1105 Government Information Group is part of 1105 Media, Inc. Neal Vitale, CEO. Corporate Headquarters: 1105 Media, Inc. 9201 Oakdale Ave., Suite 101, Chatsworth, CA 91311 www.1105media.com Office: 8609 Westwood Center Drive, Suite 500 Vienna, VA 22182-2215 Phone: Editorial: (703) 891-8554 Subscriptions: (800) 989-3363 Fax: (703) 876-5130 Internet: www.FederalDaily.com Subscription Rates: 1 year---$99 Site Licenses are available: E-mail: FENDsitelicense@ FederalDaily.com For single article reprints (in minimum quantities of 250-500), e-prints, plaques and posters contact: PARS International Phone: (212) 221-9595 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org www.magreprints.com/QuickQuote.asp The Comptroller General has ruled that federal agen- cies and departments may buy Federal Employees News Digest publications with government funds. This decision is No. B-185591. Federal Tax ID 20-4583700. DUNS #612031414. FEDERAL EMPLOYEES NEWS DIGEST (ISSN 1065-0970) is published weekly except first week in January and last week in December by 1105 Media, Inc., 9201 Oakdale Avenue, Suite 101, Chatsworth, CA 91311. Annual subscription rate is: US $99. Subscription inquiries and customer service: Mail to: Federal Employees News Digest, PO Box 15428, N. Hollywood, CA 91615-5428, customerservice@feder- aldaily.com or call (800) 989-3363, fax (818) 487-4550. © Copyright 2013 by 1105 Media, Inc. All rights reserved. Reproductions or distribution in whole or part prohibited except by site license or reprint purchase. The information in this newsletter has not undergone any formal testing by 1105 Media, Inc. and is dis- tributed without any warranty expressed or implied. Implementation or use of any information contained herein is the reader's sole responsibility. While the information has been reviewed for accuracy, there is no guarantee that the same or similar results may be achieved in all environments. Technical inaccuracies may result from printing errors and/or new develop- ments in the industry. This publication's subscriber list, as well as other lists from 1105 Media, Inc., is available for rental. For more information, please contact our list manager, Merit Direct. Phone: (914) 368-1000; E-mail: 1105media@ meritdirect.com; Web: www.meritdirect.com/1105. January 21, 2013 Vol. 62, No. 25 2 Visit us on the Internet at www.FederalDaily.com really rattled by 9/11. It was close up and very personal. For lots of people on the West Coast, in the Midwest and the South, it was horrible. But a remote news event. Not for us. Anyway, at the dinner party the guys talked. I listened. All were convinced of one thing: That is that a second attack was inevitable and coming soon. One told me where Dick Cheney had gone in case there was an attack on the White House. All of them were on very high alert. More than a decade after that dinner, the fact that the attacks haven't come yet is a testament to our security. We know of some plots that have been foiled. There are others we don't know about. So I was thinking about our (collective) reaction to, and following, horrible events. From 9/11 to the handling of Hurricane Katrina, to the shootings in the Colorado movie house, to the terrible killings in Connecticut. In the case of the Sandy Hook school shootings, the question is: Why? We will probably never know, but we have to try to find out. In the case of 9/11, or Katrina, or more recently Superstorm Sandy, we want to "connect the dots." We want to find out who failed. In the case of Sandy, did the Weather Service blow it? How about the Federal Emergency Management Agency's response? Politicians and the press want an outcome, preferably some- body they can blame. Fast forward to later this month and early February. And to March. The threat of a government shutdown or shutdowns is very real. Many people thought the fiscal cliff was a ritual dance, Republicans and Democrats playing chicken. But that it would never happen. Which it didn't. Many of those same skeptics are now saying that the debt ceiling debate and the sequestration possibility after that are very real threats. If people on either side want to let the government shut down---to make a polit- ical point---they ought to sit down and talk with my dinner party friends. Talk to some people who are in the know and who have been through it all from the inside---from earthquakes to hijackings. And they ought to do a some thinking. Suppose the government is shut down and: • There is another terrorist attack. The target could be D.C. or Wall Street again. Or the Mall of the Americas in Minneapolis-St. Paul. Or California or Gulf Coast oil refineries. Or an event in Kansas City in the heartland. While the FBI, DHS and other agencies are burning up their furlough days. •TheEastorWestCoastishitbya major (some say long overdue) earth- quake. Or the New Madrid fault heaves again, taking out places like St. Louis and destroying Mississippi River bridges. While FEMA and the Army have been told to stand down. • A virus, naturally mutated or man-made and delivered, hits the country. Or some disease, long extinct in the United States, hits our unvaccinated population. While the CDC is on forced vacation. • Two 747s collide over Chicago. Or Phoenix. Because the Federal Aviation Administration is operating with a reduced number of air traffic controllers. Or any of a dozen other events takes place. Bad enough if something horrible hap- pens when the government is up and run- ning. But what if something really bad hap- pens while the government is shut down, or working part-time, because politicians can't solve the mess they've made? Who pays? Who gets fired, or maybe goes to jail? Who loses his or her next election? Hopefully, we'll never have to ask. But because it could happen, both Democrats and Republicans should maybe once again learn to compromise and to do their jobs--- like approving budgets---and meet their deadlines. Fewer "district work periods" (code for frequent and extended VACATIONS), as well as fewer "fact-finding trips" to Paris, Greece and Hong Kong, might be a good place to start.
Jan. 14, 2013
Jan. 28, 2013