Friday, January 25, 2013

GOP Fiddles As Rome Burns: Navy Orders Cuts; Thousands to be Fired

While Congressional Republicans pander to extremists and continue to focus on protecting the wealthy for any further tax increases, draconian cuts are about to begin in the U. S. Navy.  Yes, the Navy wastes a lot of money, but the negative economic impact is going to hit areas like Hampton Roads which have foolishly relied on federal spending very hard.  An article in the Virginian Pilot looks at the Navy's planned cost saving measures that are "starting now" which will leave thousands unemployed or under employed.  The cretins and Neanderthals in the GOP never seem to grasp that the biggest expense in government spending is salaries to workers - workers who support families and help stimulate consumer spending that keeps the larger economy afloat.  Here are some story highlights:

Navy flag officers and top executives were told Thursday to begin cutting expenses - laying off thousands of temporary civilian workers, reducing base operations and preparing to cancel maintenance work on more than two dozen ships and hundreds of aircraft.

Adm. Jonathan Greenert, chief of naval operations, directed the reductions in a memorandum sent to senior Navy officials. The cuts are driven by uncertainty over how much a divided Congress and the White House might approve for the Pentagon's 2013 budget.

"We are making the following reductions, starting now, to ensure we can fund ongoing deployments and other mission-critical activities," the memo said.

The reductions do not specifically mention Navy operations in Hampton Roads, but they are expected to affect numerous private and military facilities in the region - as well as ships and aircraft. Southeast Virginia is home to multiple bases, including the Navy's largest, Norfolk Naval Station, and Norfolk Naval Shipyard, a government-owned facility in Portsmouth where thousands of civilians work on Navy vessels.

The cuts include:

• Plans to cancel maintenance for about 30 Navy ships at private shipyards between April and September.
• Plans to cancel depot maintenance for about 250 aircraft between April and September.
Terminations of temporary civilian employees and a civilian hiring freeze. This will reduce the shipyards' workforce by more than 3,000 people.
• Reductions in base spending and plans to cancel most repairs and upgrades of piers, runways, buildings and other facilities.

"This is a big deal for all those yards here that have been hiring," said Craig Quigley, executive director of the Hampton Roads Military and Federal Facilities Alliance. "They have been investing.... They have been doing advance purchases. This completely pulls the rug out from under them."

Those not happy with this looming economic disaster need to blow up the phone lines of GOP extremists like Congressmen Scott Rigell, Randy Forbes, Rob Wittman and in the Richmond area, Eric Cantor.  Truth be told, they don't give a flying f*ck about Average Americans and their families.  Only the wealthy and religious extremists count.  Ditto for the Virginia GOP which continues to strive to make the Commonwealth less competitive by allowing all social policy in Virginia to be set my the hate merchants and extremists at The Family Foundation.

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