That Ashtabula judge is not the only one trying to invoke public safety to keep his budget intact. The Fraternal Order of Police planned to hold a rally last Monday and march on Baltimore City Hall.

Now is the time to Unite and Stand with your fellow Police Officers and Firefighters and let the Mayor and City Council know that Safe Neighborhoods Are Not An Accident – Say No To Public Saftey Budget Cuts!

Hey, who cares if they can spell, as long as they protect us, right? BTW, Baltimore is known locally as Charm City. In response to that email about the rally, Adam Meister, “The Politics Meister” of Charm City Current lists about four hundred current police and fire salaries from $167,421.92 down to $20,015.74, then opines . . .

The median income for a household in the city is $30,078, and the median income for a family is $35,438. … Many of the salaries go to police department employees who do not work on the street. We need to get rid of many of these desk workers or make them work the street. There is a community relations sergeant (who many of my readers know) who made $72,522.88 a year (he may make more now)! His job is completely useless. It makes me wonder how many other jobs just like his are in the police department (and in other parts of city bureaucracy).

A commenter objects, writing, “Police officers put their lives on the line every day so you can sit safely at your computer.” – but Meister doubles down:

Actually I live in Reservoir Hill so I have a pretty good understanding of the drug situation in this city. I also know that paying a cop over $70k a year to be a communications specialist when he does not know the first thing about proper communications is a complete waste of money. A lot of the people on that list do not see the streets of Baltimore and are in do-nothing jobs. Get rid of them and assign a quarter of their former salaries for raises to the guys putting their butts on the line on the streets of Baltimore. Save a lot a money and at the same time reward those who deserve rewards.

I had some summer jobs in County and Federal government, and longer term work in the private sector. It seems to be a fact of public and private bureaucracy that there will be dead wood. It is also a fact that as times get tough, the dead wood tends to get cut out. And times are tough.

But by the same token it can be difficult to distinguish between dead wood and useful redundancy.

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