President Obama’s crackdown on excess mobile devices

President Obama’s crackdown on excess mobile devices
As the United States looks for additional ways to control spending, President Obama is demanding that all federal agencies examine mobile device usage and cut back on unnecessary spending.

The White House has found that some employees are given more devices than they actually need to do their jobs. When that happens, cell phones, smartphones, air cards, and tablets go unused, while the taxpayers continue to pay for service to these devices in addition to the initial cost of the hardware.

The White House provided some examples of success by citing that the Department of Homeland Security now conducts annual audits and has saved $10.5 million. Also, the Department of Commerce is expected to save $3 million by the end of this year by disconnected 2,648 wireless lines that have not had any usage for the last three months and optimizing the rate plans for the phones that are in use.

President Obama has signed an executive order, which gives agencies 45 days to construct a plan. Each agency’s plan must reduce spending in several specific categories, including mobile devices. The plan must show a 20 percent total reduction of the 2010 fiscal year budget that can be executed by the 2013 fiscal year.

The President said that he couldn’t wait for Congress to act. He said, “We’re cutting what we don’t need so that we can invest in what we do need.” Vice President Biden reiterated the importance of the order by stating, “Today’s executive order will stop wasteful spending and make sure we use taxpayer dollars efficiently and responsibly.

source: The White House via Forbes



1. DontHateOnS60

Posts: 872; Member since: Apr 20, 2009

Nice, now how about they invest in taking less money from us to begin with after all these cuts, instead of putting it towards more waste?

2. Doakie

Posts: 2478; Member since: May 06, 2009

I love technology. But I can totally support this cutting back. Another idiotic move imo is giving employees iPhones. Moving from Blackberries which were known for email superiority, great keyboards and known to be a poor internet browser, to a device championed by being great at browsing the internet, content consumption and not creation is idiotic in a world where businesses are trying to keep afloat. Unless the employees job needs some app specialized for their field companies handing out iPhones is a move laden in hype and stupidity. They should be getting devices that are good at keeping their employees on task, not checking facebook and tweeting about their coffee breaks. The same can be true for most Android phones. Slate phones are all in the same efficiency boat imo, if the company was giving out Droid Pros/XPRTs or Motorola Admirals with built in keyboards it would at least be halfway towards keeping business centric. But the apps of Androids and the social network Integration is still too strong.

3. mctcm

Posts: 204; Member since: Oct 19, 2011

How many executive orders is this bozo going to sign? goodbye republic, hello dictator

5. Droid_X_Doug

Posts: 5993; Member since: Dec 22, 2010

I would think you would want Barry to be looking for ways to reduce government expenses.

6. cnwwyo

Posts: 126; Member since: May 26, 2011

sure, but they always look in the wrong places. and whennthey say ok we will cut 5 billion or 500 million or whatever, it's just a drop in the bucket. it's the entitlement crap that needs to be cut. and who knows how much we give away to other countrys for nothing

8. Droid_X_Doug

Posts: 5993; Member since: Dec 22, 2010

Well, billions can be cut on the defense side of the house. Do we really need to maintain bases and boots on the ground in Europe to protect against the Soviet Union (that ceased to exist around 1991)? A second engine for the F-35 that even SecDef Gates said was a waste? And, and, and.

15. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

we do need to reduce defence spending.. we can definately shut down quite a few of our bases around the world. Every part of government needs to be scaled back. Honestly, if the government cant live on 10-15% of GDP, then its too damn big. Cut back waste, cut back these entitlement programs that are killing us, scale back defense by finishing the job overseas and not invading yet another country (obama has done more of that than bush at this point.. and more unilaterally), go to a flat or sales tax and kill the IRS and all these thousands of tax loopholes that even our treasury secretary says he doesnt understand.. But none of this will happen.. because all of that takes away power from politicans.. and most of them wont vote themselves less power.. only more. And these laughable scale backs.. 2 trillion over 12 years.. Obama care is going to cost probably 3x that amount, so we arent scaling anything back in reality. Its all a scam. Show me one that says 15 trillion+ over 10 years and then we are scratching the surface.

16. beatsandmelody

Posts: 109; Member since: Nov 01, 2011

\" But none of this will happen.. because all of that takes away power from CORPORATIONS (that have politicians in their pocket) \" Fixed.

17. mctcm

Posts: 204; Member since: Oct 19, 2011

Truth. Politicians incentive reinforces self-serving behavior. Term limits for everyone, including supreme court justices

19. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

the power is either going to be with the corporations or the politicians or both.. there is no such thing as neither. We are a representative republic, NOT a democracy which is majority/mob rule. You DONT want that. Id rather give power to those that actually create the jobs, not to those that steal our money without permission and spend it on nothing. Dont fix what I said because I meant exactly what i said.

7. Whateverman

Posts: 3295; Member since: May 17, 2009

Saving taxpayers money?!?! That bastard! And yes, that was sarcasm btw.

4. Droid_X_Doug

Posts: 5993; Member since: Dec 22, 2010

It is definitely about cutting back on expense. Even BB's were an expense that in many instances, could not really be justified based on job function. Nothing prevents federal employees from having a personal smartphone that they pay for....

9. _TheGreatIam

Posts: 16; Member since: Nov 03, 2011

The White House has found that some employees are given more devices *than they actually need to do their jobs.

10. Forsaken77

Posts: 553; Member since: Jun 09, 2011

Listen... the Senate and Congress are to wrapped up in partisan bulls**t to get anything done. They are useless and all should be replaced. They vote with the "party" instead of whats good for the people. If a democrat suggested it, republicans will vote against it just for that reason regardless of if it's a good idea or not, and vice-versa. Every politician should be replaced by regular folks that WOULD vote for the benefit of the country instead of alterior motives and big business. IMO... political parties should be abolished all together. People should be elected on their principles and ideas rather than a party. That way there can be no partisanship. And THIS is the reason Obama had to take things into his own hands people. Because the government it at a stand still and is incapable of accomplishing anything.

12. roscuthiii

Posts: 2383; Member since: Jul 18, 2010

Exactly... I'm all for abolishing political parties, the Electoral College, and lobbyists myself. I wish more people would take the Senatorial & Congressional votes as seriously as the Presidential. (And take voting on reality tv competitions a whole lot less seriously.)

14. tsarbomba

Posts: 16; Member since: Nov 11, 2011

Abolishing political parties will not change anything. If you really think that it is party definition that drives support and opposition for any legislative action, you are sorely mistaken - it is all ideological. By the way, people do take Congressional and Senatorial votes very seriously, you just have to pay attention to current events to see it. Last November a lot of people payed attention, as they will next November. Instead of opposing the Electoral College, first find out who works in the Voting Section of the DOJ and what their past work history is. You might have a change of heart.

20. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

Actually, abolishing parties would fix a lot of issues. The founding fathers were staunchly against party affiliation. Your representatives are elected to represent YOU and the rest of your district, not vote down party lines. If congressman and senators voted as the populous in their districts wanted them to instead of being told how to vote for their party, we wouldnt be in nearly as big of a mess.

21. tsarbomba

Posts: 16; Member since: Nov 11, 2011

Why do you think they vote down party lines? Do you think it is because they are simply confined due to the definition of the word "party?" The truth is, parties have ideological congruity throughout their memberships. You would be sorely mistaken to think that if democrats were no longer called democrats they would vote otherwise. Congressmen typically vote the way their constituents want them to vote, which is why they keep getting elected. Those that do not may be voted out. Whether the Founders were for or against party affiliation, it is not prohibited now and realistically should not be abolished. It gives a baseline understanding of what people are voting for and what people are trying to achieve as elected officials, as long as those who are voting have at least a basic understanding of each party's ideology. I understand exactly what you mean when you remark how Congress votes how their party tells them, but you are mistaken because those Congress-folk are not necessarily voting against the will of their constituents, even if they vote against the will of the American citizens at large. Take a brief look at all "long-term incumbents" and their districts and you will see my point. When a bunch of (or most) Congress-folk vote along party lines, despite what is best for the country - and maybe even their constituents - they do so because there is a benefit to them and it is typically money. The real culprit is earmarks and too many elected officials are susceptible. Ben Nelson, anyone?

23. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

dude, if congress was voting the will of their constituents and not down party line, then obama, pelosi, and reid would not have been able to force congress and senators hands to vote for obama care which was staunchly opposed by about 70% of the US. They voted the party line on promises of other projects down the line, high paying jobs when they get voted out for it, and more. There is so much power in a "party" that 100 individual senators dont have that its not funny. There is so much back room bribery and threats because of party affiliation that its a shame. You are missing the big picture if u dont think partys are bad for us.. at least as it sits now. if there were 3 to 4 similar sized parties, we would be in better shape. if there were more parties, we would be in better shape. if there were no parties, we would be in better shape. Having 2 parties is like having 1 party. Voting Bush or voting Obama still gets you a crap president. Voting for the fiscal conservative still gets you someone that bends and votes liberal policies. Why? Because there is too much strength in the parties. The real reason politicians demonize movements like the tea party is that they threaten to bust up some of the back door partys that these politicians are having and bring washington DC back to the people.

24. tsarbomba

Posts: 16; Member since: Nov 11, 2011

What you are really talking about is not some result of the elimination of political parties, but some manner of altruistic public service nature to which few actually adhere. The elimination of parties will not achieve this. What you are wishing for is a change in an elected official's heart, not a matter of party affiliation. Eliminating parties will have no effect on how people vote. Liberals will always vote to limit and eliminate liberty, party or not. It is ideological. When I remarked on earmarks, I was stating that corruption and bribery (no, I am not blathering cliches) are what drive so many votes by members of Congress - both houses. This is a point of agreement. If there were 3 to 4 similar sized parties that had an equal number of ideological differences, the mechanics of how votes pass laws would be revised. Additionally, if you supported one of those parties and opposed the other 2 or 3, you would be invariably irritated at how the other parties pull votes from your favored candidate for president - for example, a 3rd party split from the Republicans today would ensure Obama's destructive second term as the vote for one Republican candidate would be split between two which would mean a higher number of votes for the current regime and a victory. I am not sure what your stated big picture is when supporting the need for more and various credible political parties. Our current ideological/political status is divided between those who want to strip you of your liberty and those who want to protect it. Party affiliation simply and generally gives one an idea of where that person stands in relation to that basic concept. When you remark that having two parties is like having one, it seems to me that you ignore the reason for that claim and you neglect to define it. The current "strength" in any party is based on the largest ideological base within the party. The best examples of this are the extreme left-leaning liberals in the democrat party as well as the rising Conservative base within the Republican party. If the Conservatives continue to win elections, you will see a sea-change in the Republican party, which is exactly what we need. I agree with you when you say : "The real reason politicians demonize movements like the tea party is that they threaten to bust up some of the back door partys that these politicians are having and bring washington DC back to the people." which is a wonderful example of ideological congruity within a party. If you are interested in continuing this dialog - which I am enjoying greatly, thank you - please contact me via email.

18. Owlet

Posts: 450; Member since: Feb 21, 2011

Will Obama cut his own salary or his wife\'s vacations we all pay for 20%? That will save our country more money then some cell phones.

11. roscuthiii

Posts: 2383; Member since: Jul 18, 2010

Why don't we just cut back on the Department of Homeland Security in general? Ax it. We already have the CIA, FBI, NSA, US Military, and US Border patrol & Customs agents. (And whatever other covert methods we employ already.) DHS should just be a coordinating point between them, not a separate department with jurisdiction over all. It's not the One Ring! (Sorry, I geeked out for a second there.) And, I thought the President was supposed to be the coordinating point of all this anyhow? So maybe an appointed cabinet member, a Director (No "department" of Homeland Security. Instead, the Executive branch has been busy writing bills, which is really the job of the Legislative branch. Why is it that people forget we fought a war because we didn't wan't a king and then go and expect the President to be exactly that? Sorry, rant over. It just irks me to no end.

13. Joshing4fun

Posts: 1245; Member since: Aug 13, 2010

EW! I understand this clearly relates to phones but i come here for phones, not politics.

22. saiful10

Posts: 47; Member since: Nov 13, 2011

I never 4 get it........

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