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Can't beat a government job

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'American Coyotes' Series

Traveling by Jeep, boat and foot, Tribune-Review investigative reporter Carl Prine and photojournalist Justin Merriman covered nearly 2,000 miles over two months along the border with Mexico to report on coyotes — the human traffickers who bring illegal immigrants into the United States. Most are Americans working for money and/or drugs. This series reports how their operations have a major impact on life for residents and the environment along the border — and beyond.

Letter to the Editor
Saturday, June 29, 2013, 9:00 p.m.

The news show “60 Minutes” recently featured a story about how many Americans today are working 60 to 70 hours a week, not 40 hours.

Many ambitious business types are on their laptops or BlackBerrys while still in bed, getting ready for the upcoming day. One working couple spends 10 hours or more at the office, then works at home late into the evening.

Why do some people sacrifice a personal life and work so hard? Because they are afraid that if they do not work extra hard, someone will get ahead or even replace them. With this worry, they work and work — even if it requires that they eschew any type of a personal life.

Now contrast this work ethic by some in the private sector with those in the public sector who have similar jobs. You can bet the vast majority in the public sector — government workers — don't punish themselves in the workplace.

That's because they are not afraid of losing their jobs. Performance anxiety in government work is not nearly the same as performance anxiety in the private sector, where there is a need to make a profit. Government workers have the luxury of job security. Also, many government employees enjoy better pay than private-sector folks.

Government workers have outstanding health care, the kind most private businesses cannot match. They also have a lavish defined pension — no lousy 401(k) for these government-types.

How can I get a government job?

Another question: Who pays for this? We do. We pay and pay and it's still not enough, so we borrow from China, which makes our dollars worth less.

George Wesolosky


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