Politicians representing the chock-full-of-feds Washington area are being bombarded with calls and letters from constituents who naturally oppose plans to tamper with January raises due more than 600,000 civil servants and retirees in the District, Maryland and Virginia.

While the mail -- some of it pretty strong stuff -- shows a spirit on the part of government types, it is generally going to the wrong people.

Be advised that anybody elected from this area, be they Republican, Democrat, Whig or Free Silver Party, loves and respects civil servants. If they didn't, they would have regular jobs.

The politicians local federal workers need to impress get elected from places like Idaho, South Dakota and Vermont where federal workers are rare.

"Everytime there is a news item about the federal pay raise . . . or especially anything concerning federal retirees our {telephone} lines light up," said a congressional aide who asked not to be identified. "Naturally we love to hear from constituents . . . but so many of them call to give us unshirted hell about something or some issue where my boss completely agrees with them."

Another long-suffering staff member from a Washington area House office said, "We can look at the morning paper and see how much flak we are going to get that day. Many of the callers are expressing just concerns. But some are letting off some rather violent steam . . . in the wrong direction."

Obviously Washington area legislators, regardless of political party or ideology, realize that the way to keep their jobs is to fight for federal workers, and retirees. Threatening to recall Rep. Frank Wolf (R-Va.) or vote next time against Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) over a failed pay or pension increase may be satisfying to the caller, but it isn't very realistic. In fact, it is sort of dumb.

To be truly effective, local federal workers and retirees should consider selling friends and relatives in faraway places on issues so they can write their members of Congress. The hard, cold facts are that there are more politicians elected by people living beyond the Beltway than those elected by Washington area residents. Next time you write demanding fair play for civil servants, don't send it to Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.) or Rep. Constance Morella (R-Md.). Send the information to a friend in Chicago or Meridian, Miss., and have them send it along to the people they send here to represent them.People

Gary DiNunno has joined the Airline Pilots Association as senior staff writer for its Airline Pilot magazine. He was with the American Federation of Government Employees for 11 1/2 years, working in the public relations department and on AFGE's Government Standard newspaper.

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission secretary Kenneth F. Plumb has retired after 31 years of federal service. FERC Chairman Martha O. Hesse said Plumb was the "corporate conscience and institutional memory" of FERC and its predecessor agency, the Federal Power Commission.Job Mart

The General Services Administration is looking for several communications specialists, Grades 9 through 13, and a contract specialist, GS 9/13. Call Terri Green at 566-1805.