AUTHOR ARCHIVES

Tom Shoop

Vice President and Editor in Chief Tom Shoop is vice president and editor in chief at Government Executive Media Group, where he oversees both print and online editorial operations. He started as associate editor of Government Executive magazine in 1989; launched the company’s flagship website, GovExec.com, in 1996; and was named editor in chief in 2007.
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Mailbag Entry of the Week.

February 22, 2005 In response to Brian Friel's excellent Management Matters column on sloganeering in the workplace, an Army contractor, tells of quickly deleting a higher-up's e-mail detailing a new employee suggestion program, an action which landed him in the doghouse with a civilian manager. "The exchange," the contract employee writes, "ended surrealistically ...

Happy Birthday, G.W.!

February 20, 2005 "Let's face it, 'First in war, first in peace, and seventh in the hearts of his countrymen,' doesn't sound very impressive."--Ted Widmer, a professor of history at Washington College in Chestertown, Md., on George Washington finishing seventh in a recent poll on the greatest presidents.

Intelligent Appointments.

February 18, 2005 Like many others, I have my share of reservations about whether last year's intelligence reform will lead to an effective overhaul of the intelligence bureaucracy. Because of the ambiguous nature of the new structure set up by the law, a lot depends on who holds the top slots. And in ...

Report: TSP needs to assess customer service

February 18, 2005 The managers of the federal Thrift Savings Plan have stepped up their customer service efforts in recent years, but lack a system to measure whether the new approaches are meeting the needs of participants, according to a new report. The TSP, which consists of tax-deferred savings accounts for federal employees-similar ...

Drugs and Ethics.

February 17, 2005 Very interesting piece on Slate today about NIH's spanking-new ethics rules. In the article, Richard A. Epstein, a University of Chicago law professor (and, it should be noted in this context, consultant for Pfizer and PhRMA, the drug industry trade association), makes the case that the new rules, which were ...

Dead Battery.

February 16, 2005 Suppose you're a Colombian drug dealer, and you get the brilliant idea of running drugs through Guatemala to the United States, smuggling them across the border in car batteries. Great idea, right up to the point where you get busted in a multi-jurisdictional, multi-national takedown led by the Drug Enforcement ...

No Robots in TRICARE.

February 16, 2005 The NY Times weighs in today on the moral implications of the Pentagon's long-range plans to develop a robot army. But it also notes the cash implications. "The Pentagon today owes its soldiers $653 billion in future retirement benefits that it cannot presently pay. Robots, unlike old soldiers, do not ...

Get Your Nose Out Of My Pay.

February 14, 2005 Whole buncha replies to my item below about the widespread availability of government salary information. For starters, plenty of folks reminded me that federal employees' salaries are a matter of public record, so finding out your coworkers' grade level and bonuses is as simple as filing a Freedom of Information ...

Trashing PCs.

February 13, 2005 According to the EPA, the federal government buys 7 percent of the world's computers, and discards 10,000 of them every week. The good news is that at least some of them end up in the recycling bin.

The List, Finally.

February 12, 2005 In the dark of night, under cover of the impending weekend, OMB has finally done it: released the list of 154 programs that it proposes to eliminate in the fiscal 2006 budget. For this White House (like all other White Houses) Friday night's the night to bury the news you ...