Here’s a novel way to spend some mandatory vacation time: serve your fellow co-workers top-shelf alcohol. The government shutdown has most of Washington’s public sector furloughed, so Tom Power — the White House’s Deputy Chief Technology Officer — decided to take up bartending. Washington D.C.’s shutdown is like a Catholic school prom: all that pent-up frustration has finally been set loose.
According to The Washington Post, the furloughed tech advisor sent out an invitation to his friends to enjoy some happy juice specials at Gypsy Sally’s, one of many DC waterholes taking advantage of mid-week celebrations.
“The only restriction is that if you do telecom work in the private sector, you can’t tip me when I pour you a beer,” he wrote in an email. “How much better can it get?”
Aside from Power winning the award for awesomest bureaucrat, it shines a light on just how little our government can do during a full-on shutdown. Power is one of my go-to experts on all things telecom; he helps the federal government with the tricky issues of allocating wireless spectrum. If you’ve ever dropped a call, you desperately want the issues he deals with resolved.
For some folks in the country, such as 8-year-old Maddie Major, who has her experimental cancer treatment on hold, the shutdown is a disaster.
For the tech industry, not so much. Startups and tech companies regularly do business with the government; it may not be disastrous to wait a few weeks on any particular project, but it is costing the tech industry untold dollars in wasted time. It’s still a damn shame, though. Until then, may Power and his sauced D.C. brethren live it up.