The Crappiest Employees in America (and maybe the world)

by Brandon

Let’s pretend you own a business and you give an employee a project. We’ll pretend that employee’s name is “Lay Z. Dumas.”

Well, one day you go to Mr. Dumas and say, “Hey, there, Lay, I have a project for you.”

Lay enthusiastically says, “Sure, boss! I’ll give it my full attention!”

“It’s a relatively easy project,” you say. “It shouldn’t take more than a day or two, but because I’m such a wonderful boss, I’m going to give you an entire year to get it done.”

“Cool,” Lay says.

“Remember, you have a year,” you say, “even though the project should only take a day or two. Think you can handle that?”

“Absolutely!” Lay says. “I’m on it!”

A month goes by and Mr. Dumas hasn’t started the project. You see him occasionally arguing with other employees about it, but no work has been done. You’re tempted to say something, but you don’t. You gave him a year, after all.

Two months go by. No work is done on the project. Just occasional arguing.

Three months go by.

Six months.

Nine months.

Finally, a year goes by and the project is still not done. You go to Lay and say, “Hey, that project’s due today.”

“Crap!” Lay says. “I’ll have it by the end of the day.”

He doesn’t turn it in.

The next day (the day after the deadline) he finishes the project. And what’s worse, he’s done a completely half-assed job.

“Mr. Dumas,” you say, “I must say, I’m disappointed. This project should have taken two days to complete, three at the most. I gave you a damn year. Then… the day after the project is due, you hand me this half-done piece of crap. And you didn’t even do any of the other work you were assigned to do.”

“I didn’t do the other things,” Lay says, “because I wanted to give this project my full attention.”

“But you didn’t give it your full attention,” you argue. “You did nothing for an entire year, then you half-assed it on the last day.”

“About that,” Lay says. “I’ll finish it up sometime later this year.”

“I gave you a year!” you say. “And you did nothing!”

“That’s not true,” Lay says. “I argued with coworkers about it.”

“But you didn’t do anything, Mr. Dumas!”

“Well,” Lay says, “there’s a good reason for that.”

“I’m listening,” you say, hoping he does have a good reason.

“It’s because I can’t get along with my coworkers,” Lay says. “They’re stupid-heads and I hate them.”

You take several deep breaths, then say, “Let me get this straight… I gave you a year to complete a two-day project, and you didn’t complete it… and the reason you didn’t finish is because you can’t get along with your coworkers?”

“Yep,” Lay says. “Can I have a raise?”

Sounds absolutely ridiculous, doesn’t it? I mean, employees that absurd don’t really exist.

Right?

Well, this is exactly what we keep witnessing from our own Congress.

For example, let’s look at the whole “Fiscal Cliff” disaster.

Hell, just to be nice, I won’t even rant about the fact that they knowingly created this problem themselves. We’ll leave that alone and just look at their productivity.

When the “fiscal cliff” was created (by Congress), they gave themselves over 500 days to come up with a solution.

Yeah, that wasn’t a typo. They gave themselves over 500 days to take care of this problem (that they created themselves).

I think the exact number is 518 days.

So when did they finish this project?

Was it 500 days ago?

300 days ago?

100 days ago?

Nope.

They came to a “solution” the day after the deadline.

I put “solution” in quotes because it wasn’t actually a solution. It was a band-aid with the promise that they’ll finish it up later in the year.

And once they started actually negotiating a deal, it took them two days to come to an agreement.

Two days.

They gave themselves 518 days to complete a 2 day project, and they still didn’t finish it until day 519.

And what’s their excuse?

Bipartisan bickering.

That’s right, folks.

It’s because they can’t get along with their coworkers.

I don’t know about you, but I’ve never worked somewhere that allowed that as an excuse to not do work. As a matter of fact, that’s usually a justification for getting fired.

And you know the best part?

These guys make more money than most Americans. They have better benefits than most Americans. They have better insurance than most Americans. They get more vacation time than most Americans.

They get all this to stand around and blame other people for the fact that nothing gets done.

Make no mistake, I’m not being partisan here. I don’t care what party they belong to, there’s no excuse. In every job I’ve ever had, if I told my boss I didn’t do any work because Rob in accounting is a jerk, my boss would say, “Overcome it.”

Well, we’re their employers, and I think we’ve given them ample time to “overcome it.” If they can’t get along with their coworkers, it’s time for them to go.

We all know intelligent people. We all know people who would do a better job than what we have now. I don’t know about you, but I’m ready to start encouraging these people to run for office. It’s time to get the politicians out of politics.

For you historians out there, one of the most famous Congresses in history for getting nothing done was the Congress in session during Truman’s administration. He infamously called them the “do nothing congress.”

Well, guess what? The Congress we have today is statistically less productive than Truman’s “do nothing” Congress.

I admit, I’m no political authority. I’m no expert on American politics. I’m just a guy who writes (awesome) books about vampires and werewolves.

But that’s kind of the point. I’m just a guy, and I can see how incredibly absurd our political system has become.

I don’t have the answers. I doubt anybody has a fix-all for this mess.

But I think we’re overdue for a change.

I think it’s time for average Americans to start paying closer attention to what’s going on in Washington, and it’s time for us to demand a change.

So there it is.

Sorry for getting all political.

–Brandon


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{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Doug Lamoreux January 3, 2013 at 4:17 AM

Yep. If I say anything else my blood will boil, and I still have to write today. So… yep.
(BTW, half-assed, as Nero Wolfe would say, is not a verb.)

Reply

Brandon January 3, 2013 at 4:51 AM

Ha! Thanks for the info on half-assed. I would say that I intentionally used it incorrectly for the flow of the blog, but that would be a lie.

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Charles January 3, 2013 at 9:18 AM

You know what really chaps my hide with this post?

This statement….
“I’m just a guy who writes (awesome) books about vampires and werewolves.”

Allow me to be the first to say it. “Toot! Toot!” (Just Kidding.)

Good post, man! Well said.

Reply

Brandon January 3, 2013 at 9:38 AM

Hey, gotta throw in a little bit of levity, Charles.

Reply

Richard January 3, 2013 at 9:17 AM

You KNOW I am going to share this with the world. Without, of course, busting your anonymity.

Reply

Brandon January 3, 2013 at 9:39 AM

Don’t have to worry about anonymity on this particular blog, Richard. I figure this is one thing most of us can agree on, so I don’t think I’m being partisan here.

Reply

Robert January 3, 2013 at 10:33 AM

I wonder how difficult it would be to start a national recall on all members of Congress. We could likely round up 500 people on the street at random and get more done. It can’t get any worse.

Reply

Brandon January 3, 2013 at 12:14 PM

I tend to agree, Robert. We’ve seen no recent evidence that the people in Washington are any more qualified for that job than the folks next door.

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Lyn January 3, 2013 at 1:17 PM

Brandon, this is an exceptionally well-written post and I whole-heartedly agree. I’ve just shared it on my wall on FB. I don’t care what political party anyone belongs to, your post sums up how most Americans feel about the current state of politics in our country. I will say though, that when we go looking for replacements for our current politicians, there should probably be a list of people that even though they are not in politics now, they should not be allowed to hold office – I suggest that evil Betty White be put in a four way tie for first place on that list, along with Ann Coulter, Rush Limbaugh and Piers Morgan. Thank you for you posts, they are always insightful and well written.

Reply

Brandon January 3, 2013 at 1:33 PM

You just had to mention Betty White… Evil personified, that woman.

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Manish January 3, 2013 at 7:00 PM

and I was laboring under illusion that such things happen only in my country(India).Awesome Post Sir…Lay Z

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Doug January 3, 2013 at 9:24 PM

Excellent post Brandon. Living so close to Washington, I am inundated by all the political BS that comes out of the city. The place is completely infected by greed, back handed dealings and excesses. These people live in a completely different world than we Americans do. It’s sickening.

BTW, I would take offense to the awesome books comment if I had some books to declare awesome. :)

And….. action figures??

Reply

Brandon January 3, 2013 at 9:27 PM

One day, Doug. If I can ever get a Day Soldiers movie deal, I’m sure the action figures will follow. :)

Reply

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