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How Pensions Violate Free Speech (NY Times to Kill the Citizens United decision)
NY TIMES ^ | july 12, 2012 | Ben Sachs

Posted on 07/13/2012 9:37:19 AM PDT by Titus-Maximus

A CENTRAL principle of American political life is that everyone gets to choose which candidates to support. The idea that the government could force us to support those we oppose is anathema. But this unacceptable state of affairs is one of the unintended consequences of the Supreme Court’s decision in the 2010 Citizens United case. That’s because the vast majority of people who work in the public sector — state, local and federal employees — are required to make contributions to a pension plan. Nearly all states make participation in a pension plan mandatory and a “condition of employment” for public employees. To get and keep your job with the government, you have to give some of your paycheck to the pension plan. Public pensions, moreover, are so-called defined benefit plans, which means that employees don’t have a say in how their mandatory contributions are invested. The employees cannot request, for example, that their money be used only to buy government bonds or that it be invested only in certain mutual funds or only in select corporations. Instead, the employees’ money is invested according to whatever decisions the pension plan’s trustee makes. And, not surprisingly, pension plans invest heavily in corporate securities: in 2008, public pensions held about $1.15 trillion in corporate stock.

(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...


TOPICS: Government; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: firstamendment
What a Red Herring of an article!

Hey Benny - hire another pension manager, one to your political leanings.

Better yet - get rid of defined plans because they are stupid, expensive and most corporates dumped them years ago and let people choose. Why don't you go for more choice rather than the heavy hand of shutting down the First Amendment - answer: because you are a Democrat and want more control over people's lives.

Unions don't offer people choice, and they are basically cash machines for the Democratic Party. The Dems have tried to unionize every industry they could, to the detriment of America but to the increased political power of the Democratic Party. Why don't Democrats just give it up and do something good for America! They are always taking things that don't belong to them - and call it voting!

1 posted on 07/13/2012 9:37:23 AM PDT by Titus-Maximus
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To: Titus-Maximus

Well, people... get to sending FAXES and ‘snail mail’ (not email) to those that were elected to represent us!!!

Democrap OR Repub... we are Conservatives.. we have a right to speak up too.. We are part of the ‘constituents’...

This take-over has gone on TOO long :/


2 posted on 07/13/2012 9:42:38 AM PDT by Bikkuri (Choose, a communist, socialist, or Patriot)
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To: Titus-Maximus
All Citizens United said was that corporations have as much right as unions and state-controlled media to participate in the political process.

But they don't want a level playing field.

3 posted on 07/13/2012 9:56:49 AM PDT by E. Pluribus Unum (Government is the religion of the sociopath.)
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To: Titus-Maximus
Well perhaps this ridiculous article does answer the question of how Obama got into the Harvard Law School. Frankly, I cannot imagine how the author was ever accepted into Law School, much less given a Professorship!

It is also clear that his understanding of economics is scarcely at a grade school level. Only an absolute idiot, enrolled in any pension plan would want to prevent that plan from investing in private securities that are likely to contribute far more to his retirement benefits than the Governmental securities the author suggests.

This sort of contrived, half-thought-out, over-reaching, string of rationalized arguments, reminds one of a Nancy Pelosi pronouncement. It makes about as much actual sense as arguing that we in Ohio have a grievance because most of our weather comes in through Indiana, and the Hoosiers are reducing the Oxygen content by breathing. That the people running private corporations take some of the money for a purpose that obviously does not render those corporations less desirable to the pension fund managers, trying to provide benefits to the pensioners, is in no sense a violation of anyone's free speech outside the "down the rabbit hole" logic at the New York Times.

William Flax

4 posted on 07/13/2012 9:57:34 AM PDT by Ohioan
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To: Titus-Maximus

“Public pensions, moreover, are so-called defined benefit plans, ....”

Which really means they get a guaranteed rate of return no matter how the actual investments go... Typically 7% plus... That “guarantee” is forced on the taxpayers who have to make up the difference.

As far as I’m concerned that’s criminal.


5 posted on 07/13/2012 10:01:37 AM PDT by DB
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