Our Call… Open the Federal Pensions

The Dark Secrets of Federal Pensions
By Adam Andrzejewski | Editorial
Washington Times, March 17, 2015
Click here to read our editorial

Shine the Light on the Nest Egg | Graphic by Washington Times

It’s national Sunshine Week across America. During this week, good government groups advocate for open government and transparency. One area that remains hidden is federal pensions.

Imagine if you could review your congressman’s pension including amount contributed, years to break-even and total payout to life expectancy.
Click here to read our clarion call: Open the Books on Federal Pensions.
Recently, our organization, American Transparency, filed a Freedom of Information Act request to reveal individual federal pensions. The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) rejected it as “a clear unwarranted invasion of personal privacy.” Still, our request for the active salaries of the 2.5 million federal employees was fulfilled with seven-year histories. We post these salaries on our website,
But if active salaries (by name) can be transparent, why would posting federal retiree pension amounts, service credits, and contributions be an invasion of privacy? The same privacy law underlies both records. The Obama Administration’s legal argument against revealing pension data is arbitrary.
Taxpayer groups should not have to file a lawsuit to see this data.

Last year, former IRS executive and now federal retiree Lois Lerner was held in contempt of Congress after pleading the fifth to forgo answering the questions from the House Oversight Committee. Citizens deserve to know Lerner’s annual pension. But estimates by two DC think tanks vary by over $52,000 annually, or nearly $2 million in lifetime payout.
What did we find at the state level to justify the opening of the federal pensions?
How are federal pensions calculated?

You are not going to believe it’s the 21st century.

The founder of Adam Andrzejewski lays out a great argument to open the federal pensions to transparency…
Click here to read our clarion call: Open the Books on Federal Pensions.

It’s Sunshine Week across America. Join the Transparency Revolution!

Matthew Tyrmand, Deputy Director
Adam Andrzejewski, Chairman

P.S. Your help is needed today. Please help us post “every dime online in real time” across America.
Please make a tax deductible gift of $25, $50, $100, $250 or $500 today.

The Dark Secrets of Federal Pensions:By Adam Andrzejewski

• Adam Andrzejewski is the chairman of American Transparency and founder of
Records housed in caves should be exposed to public scrutiny.

It’s national Sunshine Week across America. During this week, good-government groups advocate for open government and transparency. One area that remains hidden is federal pensions.

Imagine if you could review your congressman’s pension, including amount contributed, years to break even and total payout to life expectancy. Or what if taxpayers could view the pensions of former Internal Revenue Service chief Lois Lerner or former Secret Service boss Julia Pierson? But we don’t know because we can’t see them. The data is not merely opaque, but literally housed and hidden in a Cold War-era underground complex in Pennsylvania.

Recently, our organization, American Transparency, filed a Freedom of Information Act request to reveal individual federal pensions. The Office of Personnel Management rejected it as “a clear unwarranted invasion of personal privacy.” Still, our request for the active salaries of the 2.5 million federal employees was fulfilled, with seven-year histories. We post these salaries on our website,

On the Appeal of Terrorism : by Edward Cline

So, what goes on in the heads of Islamic terrorists? Barack Obama says their massive, continuing murder sprees have nothing to do with Islam. The Prime Minister of Denmark, which has experienced multiple Islamic terrorist attacks over the last week, agreed with Obama that they had nothing to do with Islam, but did admit they were terrorist attacks. Ms. Thorning-Schmidt sought to calm tensions after the attacks, saying, “This is not a war between Islam and the West….We feel certain now that it was a politically motivated attack, and thereby it was a terrorist attack,” she said. If the violent suppression of freedom of speech is a “politically motivated attack, and if she is certain of that, why deny it has nothing to do with Islam?

Speaking to reporters in Copenhagen on Sunday, according to Danish television station TV2, Ms. Thorning-Schmidt said: “This is not a war between Islam and the West. We will do our best to defend our democracy and Denmark.”

In the name of what politics were the attacks on a meeting about freedom of speech in Copenhagen and on a newspaper in Paris launched? No answer. Blank out.

The Altruist Moral Cast of Early American Novels : by Edward Cline

After a hiatus from my columns, one enforced by the necessity of writing, without distraction, my latest Cyrus Skeen mystery novel, Silver Screens, set in the Hollywood milieu (but not in Hollywood itself), it is appropriate that I return with the review of a book about the early American novel, Philip F. Gura’s Truth’s Ragged Edge: The Rise of the American Novel, which traces the beginnings of the literary form in this country and discusses its largely religious nature and later anti-American nature. He covers roughly the century just prior to the American Revolution up to the mid- to late 19th century.

Gura discusses such better known novelists as Nathaniel Hawthorne and Herman Melville, and reveals that they, too, experimented with, if not endorsed, the kind of “self-fulfillment” dramatized by their lesser known colleagues in the realm of fiction. Many of the novelists Gura discusses aren’t even on Wikipedia’s list of known 19th century writers.

All novels are “morality tales” of one kind or another, including Silver Screens. The difference, however, between Silver Screens and virtually every novel discussed by Gura is that the morality in Silver Screens is integrated with the action, whereas the morality and action in these early novels are rarely integrated and are paragons of what novelist/philosopher Ayn Rand called the soul-body dichotomy. That is, the morality is not reason-based and so is at odds with man’s nature and with reality itself.

Netanyahu Scores Dramatic, Decisive Victory in Israeli Elections By David Daoud

20th Knesset. With almost all the ballots counted for Israel’s general election held today, the ruling Likud party of Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu has scored a dramatic and decisive victory over the rival Zionist Union party

99% of votes have been counted from a total of 4,223,057 and Likud is in first place with 23.29 percent. Zionist Union is trailing far behind in second place with 18.76 percent, almost 5 percentage points behind Likud. (Media and Polls caught lying through their wishful thinking teeth once again)

The results give Netanyahu 29 seats in Israel’s Knesset, a full 5 more than the Zionist Union with 24. The tally significantly exceeds exit poll results which showed the two parties in a dead heat.

The United Arab List is in third place at 10.95 percent or 14 seats, followed by the centrist Yesh Atid with 8.78 percent or 11 seats and Moshe Kahlon’s Kulanu with 7.42 percent or 10 seats. Bayit Yehudi now holds 6.40 percent or 8 seats, Shas has 5.82 percent or 7 seats, Yisrael Beiteinu has 5.17 percent or 6 seats, and United Torah Judaism has 5.18 percent.

President is not Commander in Chief of Foreign Policy by Alan M. Dershowitz

Politicians should stop referring to the President of the United States as “the Commander-in-Chief,” as he is often referred to. Most recently, Hillary Clinton, whom I admire, said the following about Republican senators who wrote an open letter to Iran:

“Either these senators were trying to be helpful to the Iranians or harmful to the Commander-in-Chief in the midst of high-stakes international diplomacy.”

But the president is not the Commander-in-Chief for purposes of diplomatic negotiations. This characterization mistakenly implies that President Obama — or any president — is our Commander, and that his decisions should receive special deference. This is a misreading of our constitution, which creates a presidency that is subject to the checks and balances of co-equal branches of the government. The president is only the commander in chief of “the Army and Navy of the United States, and of the militia of the several states, when called into the actual service of the United States.” This provision was intended to assure civilian control over the military and to serve as a check on military power.

Ex-Sunni Imam Hosts Pro-Israel Evening in Omaha — on The Glazov Gang

This week’s Glazov Gang was joined by Dr. Mark Christian, the President and Executive Director of the Global Faith Institute (GFI). He is an Egyptian-born Christian convert from Sunni Islam and is related to high-ranking leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood. (Learn more about his background and contemporary battle with the Muslim Brotherhood here.)

He came on the show to discuss the pro-Israel evening he is hosting in Omaha, “Israel in the Heartland,” on March 19 to honor Israel. It is the first ever pro-Zionist event to be held in the United States heartland and the state of Nebraska:

The Problem at Immigration and Customs Enforcement By Michael Cutler

Organizations, whether in the public sector or private sector, tend to issue press releases for many purposes, but most often it is for public relations.

Federal agencies, including ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement), routinely issue press releases that tout their successes to convince the public that the money that is appropriated by Congress has been well spent.

I plan to periodically write commentaries to dissect significant ICE press releases and shed light on the truth behind those press releases. The most effective weapon we have in our arsenal to make our government accountable is the ability to ask the best questions we can. Questions are most impactful when they are based on knowledge and, indeed, it has been said that you can more readily determine the intelligence of a person by the questions he/she asks rather that the answers that the person provides.

Obama Administration Insults Memory of Armenian Holocaust By Stephen Brown

Next month, Armenians worldwide will mark the centennial of the Armenian Holocaust that saw 1.5 million of their people perish barbarically at the hands of the Ottoman Turks in a jihad that is continuing today under the Islamic State. This destruction of the Armenians in Anatolia, where they had lived for several thousand years, was also the event that gave Hitler reason to believe he could get away with exterminating Jews, Poles and Gypsies.

“Who still remembers today the annihilation of the Armenians?” the Nazi leader reportedly said.

The trauma of 1915 left deep scars on the Armenian psyche, similar to those the Nazi Holocaust made on that of the world’s Jews. As a result, one would think the Obama administration would show an increased sensitivity regarding the killing of Armenians, especially by Muslim enemies, and more especially in view of the approaching Armenian Holocaust’s centenary in April. But only last month, US Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Victoria Nuland urged Armenian authorities to make “a humanitarian gesture” and release two Azeri terrorists who had crossed the border from Azerbaijan and murdered two people, one a 17-year-old. A third Armenian, a woman, was badly wounded.

Netanyahu Emerges Victorious By Arnold Ahlert

s vote tallying came to a close Wednesday night, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud Party emerged as the clear victor in the Israeli election, besting the runner-up Zionist Union party headed by the Labor Party leader Isaac Herzog and his running mate, Tzipi Livni. As a result, Netanyahu has gained the upper hand in forming the country’s next coalition government.

The election reflected polling done in December, when Netanyahu appeared to have a comfortable lead following his call for new elections, due to opposition within the current coalition government. Just prior to the election, however, Netanyahu’s Likud party trailed the left-of-center Zionist Union, a party whose platform centered around a wish to resume negotiations with the Palestinians. If they had emerged victorious, Herzog and Livni would have split the four year term, with Herzog serving the first two years and Livni the second two.