Federal Employees Are Watching So Much Porn

Illustration for article titled Federal Employees Are Watching So Much Porn

The government is starting to crack down on its employees who look at porn all day.

According to Environment and Energy Publishing, back in May an employee of the Environmental Protection Agency was busted for looking at up to six hours of porn a day. The discovery caused outrage from lawmakers, who called for his firing:

Aghast lawmakers took turns jabbing EPA for failing to fire the staffer, who confessed to having watched pornography on his work computer for between two and six hours per day since 2010.

"How much pornography would it take for an EPA employee to lose their job?" asked incredulous Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.).

"Fire him. Fire him," demanded Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah).

Even though he was banned from the building, he is still on government payroll. According to the EPA's spokesperson, he is on administrative leave but still gets paid by the agency. That news prompted Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) to draft a bill that would make it against the law for federal employees to watch porn at work.

Meadows notes this problem isn't limited to the EPA. Several agencies over the years have dealt with employees' using government computers for activities that are, well, outside the scope of government work.

"It's not just casual porn viewing, but hours and hours of unproductive time doing things we shouldn't be condoning. There seems to be a need to reinforce agency rules that might be in place, but not enforced," Meadows said.


Policy Mic gathered a list of some other incidents of federal employees caught watching porn on the job as well. These are just a few of

  • In 2014, a Federal Communications Commission employee indulged in some pornographic me-time for eight hours per week because "he was bored.
  • Also in 2014, investigators alleged that a Treasury Department employee viewed more than 13,000 pornographic images in a six-week span while at work. "He stated he is aware it is against government rules and regulations, but he often does not have enough work to do and has free time," they said.
  • The Washington Times reported in 2009 that "one senior [National Science Foundation] executive spent at least 331 days looking at pornography on his government computer and chatting online with nude or partially clad women without being detected."
  • A second National Science Foundation employee, when investigators asked him how much government work he completed on a day of particularly vigorous porn-watching, responded with, "Um, I can't remember."

I'm going to guess that it's probably going to be impossible for lawmakers to discuss cracking down on without turning into a crusade against porn. Now, I sit back and eagerly await for the Internet to sleuth out all the time these lawmakers have spent watching porn in their offices as well. ::pours bowl of popcorn, settles into comfy chair::

Image via Shutterstock.

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the most remarkable thing here is the number of federal employees using the excuse "i didn't have any work to do." actually it's probably true, not an excuse. so many federal employees having nothing to do is not surprising (slow, bloated bureaucracy is going to have plenty of employees on the payroll with no clear duties) but it is really messed up! i wish they would solve that problem and get some efficiency going.