Skip to comments.What public-sector unions have wrought
Posted on 02/22/2011 6:08:40 PM PST by RobertClark
One way or another, government employees must be weaned from their exorbitant defined-benefit pension plans. Those plans should be closed completely to new employees and frozen for current employees. Already-vested benefits cannot be touched, but all retirement benefits going forward ought to be accrued within a defined-contribution plan requiring employee contributions. Without depriving employees of any benefits they have earned to date, governments have to be able to amend the terms on which future benefits are earned. Tens of millions of Americans working in the private sectorincluding many belonging to labor unionsknow from first-hand experience that the terms and conditions of future employment can be changed. That is how real life works, and a government job should not confer immunity from real life.
FDR was right. Collective bargaining has no place in the public sector. It inevitably leads to abuse. Favoritism, undue influence, lack of transparency, manipulation of government policy, the relentless mulcting of the taxpayerthis is the poisoned fruit of turning government agencies into union shops. It goes without saying that public employees ought to be as free as anyone else to join professional associations and affinity organizations. They are certainly entitled to all the protections of the civil rights laws and of a reasonable civil service system. But labor unions should have no right of exclusive representation in any government workplace and no right to negotiate wages and benefits with public officials who crave their votes and political support.
Public-sector collective bargaining has been a mistakea mistake whose ruinous, expensive, and corrupting effects are climaxing in the onrushing public-pension tsunami. There is no easy way to undo that mistake. But as the gathering crisis makes vividly clear, there are many good reasons to try.
(Excerpt) Read more at jeffjacoby.com ...
Unreasonably vested should be touched. Why should someone who paid 6-7% of a salary get that final year salary for 20+ years. THEY NEVER COULD HAVE SAVED THAT MUCH! The guaranteed returns are ridiculous. The paid funds should be pro-rated versus what was paid in versus SSI. SSI should be the only government pension!!!
What we need first is a revision to the tax laws so that we are all equal under the law (one of those unused clauses in the Constitution as I recall).
Else, all you have here with the "contribution deal" is the conversion of otherwise UNTAXED INCOME into TAXABLE INCOME.
Conservatives don't believe in tax increases.
When you hear of dividends or capital gains being touted by the Democrats (and parroted by the MSM) as “un-earned income” but they completely let go the fact that over 75% of the public employee pensions and benefits are purely expenditures from the tax coffers MAKES ME INSANELY ANGRY.
They earn nothing.
This is what they want to do and remember the too big to fail banks? We have to keep an eye open and make sure they can't socialize those pensions to everyone in America.
You'll recall that Obama's General Motors shenanigan involved ripping off an Indiana Teacher's Retirement Fund that held GM bonds.
The individual plans assume that even if you die your relatives get some. That's not true with these group pension plans.
Ask pilots of bankrupt airlines that defaulted on pension funds. Retired and retiring public employees should indeed be vulnerable to pension adjustments when the jurisdiction was bankrupted by wastefulness masquerading as merit and generosity. Give them the same ratio that the PBGC gave the pilots.
Don’t lead opposition to this with ‘No,’ nor “H*** No” but rather with asking why the Obama should be guaranteeing Illinois’s bonds in support of Obama’s OWN pension. After all he worked longer for IL State Legislature than for any other job. I bet he was promised a nice pension for it and the conflict of interest therein should faze somebody above and beyond the many who’ll oppose any bailout.
Forget all this, write a check tomorrow to every public employee for their entire contribution to their pension funds including 5% yearly compounded interest and close them. Deny any permission to sue to restore the benefits in court as a sovereign entity, and say goodbye.
If they don’t like it, tough. Just because someone promised you the ability to rob indefinitely the public funds doesn’t make it legal. It is still robbing, and you’re still a criminal.
Glad I’m already a Federal retiree with a pension!