No. of Recommendations: 2
People in government frequently have a defined benefit plan and a defined contribution plan and exceptional healthcare benefits. Even with these things, highly trained professionals who are top shelf in terms of talent are underpaid relative to those in private industry.

At the middle level, however, this combination of benefits is very powerful. I should know. While I never worked for the government (except for the army, which was not my idea), I had all those benefits we usually associate with government.

Now the army, it didn't pay so good. Let's see, I had housing (12 to a room) and healthcare, but as a drafted college graduate infantryman, between 1969 and 1971, I earned a total of $4,586. That's the total pre tax for two years, and it includes a night job as a bartender for one year. I was a Sergeant E-5 with eight direct reports who sometimes carried live ammunition, but I digress...

My real job for years was in an industry where the stars can earn eight figure incomes at a young age and even the clerks get paid enough to live in New York. My employer didn't have the revenues to support that kind of compensation but they took care of us with fringe benefits; pension, 401K with matching of the first 6% and health benefits I never paid a dime for.

As a result of all this, the amount in my tax deferred accounts as we speak is equal to an astonishing 78.75% of my reported Medicare earnings for my entire life! Yup, and I didn't pay one cent of taxes on any of it. That kind of compensation won't get you filthy rich, but it will get you pretty prosperous.
Print the post  


When Life Gives You Lemons
We all have had hardships and made poor decisions. The important thing is how we respond and grow. Read the story of a Fool who started from nothing, and looks to gain everything.
Contact Us
Contact Customer Service and other Fool departments here.
Work for Fools?
Winner of the Washingtonian great places to work, and Glassdoor #1 Company to Work For 2015! Have access to all of TMF's online and email products for FREE, and be paid for your contributions to TMF! Click the link and start your Fool career.