Scott M. Patton
I lost my local govt job a year ago. Oddly, I seem to be happier than many of those who survived the first round of cuts. While the level of discord in politics in America seem to be at an all time high, government employees have taken an amazing hit from the public because public sector "hasn't suffered enough" as a friend described to me. This resentment, coupled with the uncertainty of employment and increased demands, takes a huge toll on morale, which then impacts service quality.
I personally don't think that government leaders have not done a good job of knowing how to manage bad times. Closed door meetings, reducing communication, poorly explaining how decisions will be made, learning of decisions from the newspaper, reaching decisions that are counter to stated priorities, etc. all lead to an anxiety-laden organization.