Archive for the ‘unions’ Category
The eventual result (of public employee unions), as a Bloomberg News series has detailed, was absurdly high packages for public employees. The California state trooper with the $484,000 compensation package is only an extreme example of a national trend. The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which manages JFK Airport, has 13 employee unions. Some longtime officials of those unions are paid more than $200,000 a year each, as the Empire Centerfor New York State Policy has revealed. In the meantime, of course, the economy grew far more slowly than predicted, rendering such payments prohibitive.
We have to quit bullshitting people on this.
This bargain appeared to work. The strikes abated. Yet the bargain eventually caused the very result the skeptical commentators had predicted years before. Politicians in office and public-sector union officials both had an interest in pushing compensation to the heavens.
Concerns that might have checked the city and state treasurers, such as the fiscal future of their town or state, paled in comparison with the immediate need of handing a packet across that table. Over and over again, public officers deluded themselves into believing that future economic growth and the attendant revenue would pay for dream packages.
Stop playing games with reality.
Here’s the truth – all forward compound growth expectations without a definite termination date are frauds.
Worse, this is trivially-easy to prove. Take Excel and graph any positive growth rate out over, say, 20 years. Then graph it out over 100 years. That’s 5x as long. Is the figure 5x as large? No, it is much bigger.
Don’t have Excel? That’s ok — have a look here; all you need is a reasonably-modern web browser. I conveniently set a 5% growth rate. In 20 years starting with $1,000 of obligation you have a ”mere” $2,526.95 of required payment for each $1,000 you began with. That’s only 2.5 times as much, more or less. No problem, right?
What is it in 100 years?
$125,239.29 for each $1,000, or more than 125 times the original amount.
How did you say you were going to pay that obligation again?
You damn well should be, but that doesn’t change a thing. Arithmetic just is. It doesn’t care about politics, or feelings, or anything else.
In fact it is this very reality that makes Ponzi schemes illegal in the general sense, it is why we can prosecute them, and why when someone runs one and gets hauled into court we can prove with mathematical certainty that it will blow up and the claims that the schemer made are impossible to fulfill.
The same applies to all compound growth projections that do not have a definite end date.
Every single one.
Every single time.
Incidentally, 5% is ridiculously low. Most of these “plan managers” assumed anywhere between 8 – 11% growth and that’s what they predicated their promises on.
At 8% — the lower end of the “projection” range – the 100 year obligation is $2,036,815.98 for every $1,000 they started with.
Every one of those union managers, along with every one of the government employers — city managers, county commissioners and similar — are guilty of perpetrating frauds upon the public.
They have made promises that are mathematically impossible to keep, and a literal 5 minutes with a spreadsheet proves it.
But we, the people, refuse to hold them to account.
We refuse to bring them to justice.
We refuse to demand that they be indicted.
We refuse to vote them out of office.
And finally, we continue to listen to and accede to them being firefighters, police officers, teachers, janitors and port workers even though their compensation and especially retirement packages were “negotiated” by persons who either knew or should have known that the claimed promises and payments were impossible to fulfill on an indefinite forward basis — as was promised — and they all individually and collectively cooperated in the pressure applied in the form of the implied and sometimes realized threat of strikes in the perpetration of that fraud upon the public.
The column claims there was a “grand bargain.”
That’s yet more mendacity.
There was in fact a grand swindle, and the persons involved in it should be in prison, just as any other Ponzi schemer who ran that crap on your grandmother would be.
Today was another raucous day in Michigan’s state capitol. Reminiscent of the uproar in Wisconsin last year, the unions in Michigan were not to be outdone. The Twitter-sphere was filled with gems like this:
‘Collective bargaining?” Just what does this legislation have to do with collective bargaining Ms. Granholm and Mr. Obama? Absolutely NOTHING. In order to actually get people to protest against this legislation, first they have to lie about the legislation.
As my friend Joan Fabiano from Grassroots Michigan states, the bills here in Michigan are about choice. No more and no less.
What is a Right to Work law? A Right to Work law guarantees that no person can be compelled, as a condition of employment, to join or not to join, nor to pay dues to a labor union. Section 14(b) of the Taft-Hartley Act affirms the right of states to enact Right to Work laws.
The Right-To-Work legislation attempts to undo something that was amoral and discriminatory to begin with: using the force of government to require all people in certain fields of work to pay union dues in order to be employed. The government should have no role in playing favorites or in forcing some people to do the bidding of others. In this case, unions wanted to force everyone to be members of the union and therefore pay dues, just in order to have a job in a particular field. To give their demand more authority, power and most importantly enforcement, they got government to write a law favoring their monopolies. These laws have been in effect now for more than 2 decades. And where has that gotten Michigan? Well, we have had the highest unemployment rate in the nation for nearly that long as well as the highest union membership. What does that tell you? I’d say it’s a nice illustration of cause and effect.
I also find it hypocritical that the same people who are distorting what the legislation really does and says, and advocating for forced unionization to endure are the same group of people who argue vehemently for a woman’s right to choose an abortion. Why, may I ask, is the right of a woman to choose any different than a worker’s right to choose? Some free choice is okay, such as when it ends the life of a living organism, but free choice doesn’t fly when choosing employment? How about this: If the unions had something of value to offer, they wouldn’t have to use the force of government to get people to join.
Then of course, when all rational argument breaks down, the unions resort to precisely what they have done every single time they are backed into a corner with nothing intelligent to say for themselves: violence. Raw, unmitigated, unprovoked violence. Steven Crowder of PJTV found this out the hard way while manning the Americans For Prosperity tent when the unions decided it was time to make a statement.
I’ll note here that many of the members of AFP, Campaign for Liberty and other RTW supporters were legally armed and obviously for good reason. Despite the unprovoked physical violence of union members upon RTW supporters, no one was shot. I would say that this is a testament to the fortitude, good judgment, rationality and restraint of law-abiding gun owners. I would definitely say that I would have feared for my life, especially in the case of Steven Crowder whose second attack came from behind!
I don’t expect the union thuggery to go away. Indeed, I expect they will try more lies and more violence, but the fact is, the final reconciled bills have now passed and Governor Snyder is expected to sign them into legislation tomorrow. One small step for Michigan….A tiny bit of government thuggery has been removed here, but we will still have to contend with the unions’ thuggery, even if they no longer have the government doing their dirty work.
When you get down to it, the fiscal cliff, along with most of the rest of the political “problems” we face in this nation, come down to one thing: willful and intentional misconduct.
That’s a morality problem folks.
Let’s put the record on the table, shall we?
In 1980 total Federal Health Spending was $55.3 billion.
In 1990 it was $155.8 billion.
That’s about an 11% annualized increase.
At that rate what is US Federal Spending for a 65 year old 30 years hence when he dies?
$3,567 billion, or three times the size of the entire Federal Government in 1990.
Known in 1990? Yes.
So what did the government do after that? It started talking about and ultimately passed Medicare Part “D”, which dramatically increased future entitlement promises.
Who’s responsible for this? Both Democrats and Republicans. We have had both administrations and both parties in control of Congress.
Is the underlying problem simply that government is paying too much? No, it is monopoly practices which took hold during the 1980s.
But was it just the 1980s? Why no. In 1970 the US Federal Government spent $12.1 billion on Health Care. Remember, this was not long after Medicare was put in place. Just 10 years later in 1980 the government spent more than four times as much.
Morals? Where? The fact that the medical industry would “eat” the government and ultimately destroy our society was known 30 years ago. You were lied to by both parties and both parties continue to lie to you today.
They lie because you let them.
You let them because many of you are lying too.
Who are the people lying to? Themselves.
Can you live beyond your means? No. So why do we allow it? Why do we remove from personal responsibility the consequence of having children, for example?
EBT cards are one example. It used to be that if you were hungry you could go to a soup kitchen and stand in line for a bowl of soup and some donated (and usually stale) bread. It didn’t taste all that good, but it was reasonably nutritious; it usually contained beans or some similar source of protein, and occasionally some small pieces of meat, all donated.
But you had to stand in line before the church or other place running the kitchen, effectively announcing “I’m poor.”
We decided as a society that your self-esteem is more important, and thus we started issuing “food coupons.” That (partially) hid your poverty. But even that was visible, so now it’s done via what looks like an ordinary credit card — but isn’t.
Because we’re dishonest. We think it’s perfectly fine for people to hide that they’re sponging off everyone else. We claim that self-esteem (in the negative sense) is not a motivator, even though we know that failure does motivate people (to not fail again!) We further claim that you won’t get more of whatever you subsidize, even though we know you will, and that you won’t get less of whatever you tax.
These are all lies. They’re lies that you tell yourself. You tell your neighbors, friends and acquaintances those same lies.
Worse, you lie to your children, and tell them they’ll have a better tomorrow, and a better future, even though you know damn well that what you’re doing and demanding is destructive and mathematically impossible.
The worst offenders are school teachers, administrators and politicians of all stripes. I have particular disdain for those political types that claim to be “for the people” or even worse, “for liberty”, because they’re not only lying they’re either doing so from positions of power or trying to achieve power through lies. Teachers lying to students are particularly mendacious; those who use students for political protest (and there are many) or who selectively teach that collectivism is somehow superior and will “work” (even though history shows it never has) and then argue that they are somehow “special” and should have “retirements” that are guaranteed at a level that nobody else can achieve in private industry are in fact trying to defend the right to financially rape their students!
Want an example? How about right here:
Two Michigan school districts closed Tuesday after hundreds of teachers called out, likely so they could participate in union protests tied to the expected passage of “right-to-work” legislation this week in the state capital.
FoxNews.com confirmed that the Warren school district had to close Tuesday after so many teachers called out absent; WDIV in Detroit reported that the Taylor school district had to do the same. A statement from the Warren system said that by 8 a.m. local time, 750 staff members had called out.
If you associate with any of these teachers in any way, shape or form or worse, are one, you are a pig. You are a feral rat, a snake, a pile of used dogfood. You deserve to rot under a bridge and your remains should be despoiled by wild fox and whizzed on by all who pass. No parent should permit their child to remain in your classroom and any that does should be charged with felony child abuse.
Is my opinion clear enough or need I state it more-strongly?
We will never address what ails our nation until we cut this crap out. It begins with you, I, and everyone else. It begins with we the people demanding that those who we choose to associate with and those who we elect to office hold a higher moral standard and when they fail if they are in a position of powerthey be immediately removed and replaced by someone else. If they are an associate then we must cease association until their behavior changes.
A nation and her people are only as moral and ethical as those who reside within it demand of those who lead, and especially those who instruct our youth.
Our founders were wiser than we, in the main. John Adams comes particularly to mind, who said, among many other things:
“Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passion, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.”
Indeed they are.
“While our country remains untainted with the principles and manners which are now producing desolation in so many parts of the world; while she continues sincere, and incapable of insidious and impious policy, we shall have the strongest reason to rejoice in the local destination assigned us by Providence. But should the people of America once become capable of that deep simulation towards one another, and towards foreign nations, which assumes the language of justice and moderation, while it is practising iniquity and extravagance, and displays in the most captivating manner the charming pictures of candour, frankness, and sincerity, while it is rioting in rapine and insolence, this country will be the most miserable habitation in the world. Because we have no government, armed with power, capable of contending with human passions, unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge and licentiousness would break the strongest cords of our Constitution, as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.
The responsibility begins and ends with us folks.
So your charge today, dear reader, is to do exactly that.
To accept that our government cannot fund that which we will not pay for in the present tense.
To demand that our government put a stop to the medical monopolies right now throughout the system, without exception, fear or favor.
To return poverty “assistance” programs to their former status which places your acceptance of such aid in public view; if “society” is paying for it then we have a right to see it, for good or bad, in all its splendor, and be able to count it, as this not only is a check and balance on people claiming that which they don’t really need, it also prevents hiding the scope of problems when they’re real.
Finally, I challenge you to look at your own personal associations in your daily life, and to decide. This is not just a matter of your personal way of life, although it may appear that way. We are, as a nation, governed by liars and thieves, yet arithmetic does not know politics nor will it sit still for them. It just is, and if our conduct does not change in the immediate future the outcome as dictated by arithmetic will come and your weal — or woe — will be determined not just by your own conduct but also by the conduct of those who you choose to associate with.
Choose wisely, for the time remaining to choose at all is coming to a close.
(CNSNews.com) –Speaking at the Daimler Detroit Diesel Plant in Redford, Mich., on Monday, President Barack Obama lashed out at the Michigan legislature, which is preparing to pass a right-to-work law, and declared that Americans only needed to look at Michigan if they wanted to see how unions helped build the middle class.
“These so called right to work laws, they don’t have to do with economics,” Obama said. “They have everything to do with politics.
“What they’re really talking about is giving you the right to work for less money,” said Obama. “You only have to look to Michigan where workers were instrumental in reviving the auto industry to see how unions have helped build not just a stronger middle class but a stronger America.”
These workers appealed and were reinstated at their positions.
After being followed and caught on camera getting boozed up and then immediately returning to work.
It is a fact that unions in Michigan in particular have destroyed entire industries, say much less individual firms. The record goes back decades.
There was a time in this country when labor unions were necessary — when real honest-to-god sweatshops existed in the nation. But over time labor unions in both the public and private sectors have evolved into leaches that make impossible-to-meet demands that they know are mathematically impossible to sustain (such as pensions including retiree health care) and then bludgeon management (including cities, counties and states) into acceptance of the impossible under threat of strike, and being a closed-shopunion-shop state they are able to prevent the mass-firing of the entire lot of workers and their replacement with non-union employees.
This then ultimately leads to the collapse of the company in question. When it happens in the private sector those who thought they had “protected” pensions and retiree health care get buttraped and the business disappears, with the pension being dumped into the PBGC, which by law can only pay what is actually there. The union bosses who negotiated these fraudulent deals are neverprosecuted and imprisoned for their knowingly-bogus math and projections, and neither is management for acquiescing — but both point fingers at the other.
When the institution is a government such as a city, school system, fire or police department then its even worse. The union points to alleged “constitutional protections” that they managed to get written into the law, making the entire process fraudulent as there never was a true adversarial negotiation in the first place.
This ultimately leads to attempts to dramatically increase taxes. But taxes can be legally avoided; people can move, for instance, and the producers who pay those taxes do move! Now you’re screwed — the union has “negotiated” the impossible and when it comes time to pay the money doesn’t exist. Again, they did this knowingly and intentionally, yet nobody is ever indicted and jailed for fraud.
Closed-shop laws are an anachronism that must disappear. Michigan is taking a necessary and long-overdue step, and Obama is simply full of crap.
As for organizing cops, firefighters and teachers (along with any other public employees) — that should be a felony.
And when you, as a government official, irrespective of your title, support and promote intentionally fraudulent projections that lead to the bankruptcy of firms and even entire governmental units, you are in fact a douche and I, for one, am not afraid to call you what you are.
The union “movement” in this nation took a big fat movement of the bowel style yesterday when by refusing further concessions to a company already attempting to reorganize in bankruptcy they led it to make the decision to shut down.
Hostess, the maker of Ding-Dongs, Fruit Pies and the veritable Twinkie, the inanimate star of the movie Zombieland, is no more.
Thus we see another example of the markets at work, although I’m sure the “Capitalist Pig!” scream will be heard across the land by many a leftist this weekend.
The truth of course is that by shutting down those “Capitalist Pigs” make no more money either. This is the nature of a bilateral “gun to the head” sort of negotiation; if you push two hard and either party shoots, both lose.
There comes a time, however, when that’s the right choice — when the position labor has placed management in becomes untenable, especially when it comes to benefits. The underlying pressures are not, in the main, wages per-se — they’re the forward liabilities of retirement in pensions and particularly health care.
There are many who claim that these benefits were negotiated years or even decades before and are “inviolate.” But that’s not really true, because they were negotiated for in bad faith. The very people who engaged in those negotiations also have been part and parcel of the national “credo” of more for less, of leverage abuse, of government largesse and deficit, of monopoly and abuse of privilege that have driven the cost of those pensions to the moon.
It is one thing to negotiate a health care package for retirement that is expected to cost the firm $1,000 a year at the time you negotiate it. It is quite another to then take public policy advocacy positions that drive the cost to $10,000 or even $20,000 years later while claiming that you’re still entitled to the original benefit — not the original price of the benefit.
One is just. The other is fraud.
But since there is no means of separating the two when the public policy implications blow back on manufacturers like Hostess the result is that unions must face their own culpability (and accept the damage) in the outcome they advocated for and now are receiving, or they will be seeing many more Hostess-style results.
The worst offenders in this regard are the public-sector unions, who invariably advocate for political candidates and positions that intentionally drive this deficit spending and leverage expansion — but then argue they should be exempt from its consequence.
Sorry folks, life doesn’t work that way, as over 18,000 formerly-employed people just found out.
I’m done. Just read this:
Officers handed out fliers saying when you come to Detroit you “enter at your own risk.” They also urged people to vote yes on Proposal 2.
“We’re not discouraging people from coming, I love the city, I want them to realize we don’t have enough man hours,” said union president Joe Duncan. “I don’t think the city is going to get same officer 8 hours a day as you do for 12 hours a day.”
Here’s the answer I have for the cops: Go home, disband and die of starvation under an overpass in the upcoming Detroit winter. The people will take care of this themselves.
$420 million dollars for cops is more than enough to cover 800,000 people. If it turns out that it’s not, for whatever reason, then the simple solution is thatcops didn’t do their job and the job needs to go back to the people, who should be happy to do it on ther own. For $420 million one time every single citizen in Detroit can be provided a gun and enough ammunition to hole every single gang-banger a dozen times or more.
This act by the cops is nothing other than extortion, exactly as the mob practices. The correct response to extortion by any mob is never to knuckle under to it — rather it it is to meet force with maximum lawful resistance and make clear that the extorting party will cut that crap out – and that you are not making a request.
In short the people of Detroit need to take back their 2nd Amendment right and begin carrying firearms openly and everywhere, as the Constitution provides, making clear that the city belongs to them and not to the thugs, irrespective of what particular gang affiliation — Crips, Bloods, god-knows-whats — or blue — the gang happens to be dressed in.
If the cops don’t like it then they can quit and the citizens can take over. I suspect the streets will get quiet real fast should they do so, and then the “big lie” of the cop shop will become evident — they’re ineffective, they’re overpaid and they’re unnecessary.
Enough is enough.
People in Detroit can take responsibility for themselves by checking out:
Do it now and do NOT wait to be a victim.