Jeff Neal for C.U.R.E. - Certain Unalienable Rights Endowment

Wisconsin: Upon reflection, it’s not the Unions’ fault, is it?

In Economics, Opinion, Political Critique on February 22, 2011 at 5:11 pm

We need a better brand of politicians.

Let’s look at Wisconsin and the battle royale Governor Walker is up against.  Let’s finally place the blame where it belongs – vote buying, career-enhancing, perpetual politicians

For years, the governor’s predecessors had a cozy little thing going with the unions – they bought political support with tax-payer money in the form of juicy compensation for union members.  But since those same elected officials had promised voters they would keep taxes low, they had sold their souls twice.  Then the lies started to cover it up.

First, they gave the union workers IOUs instead of cash:  exorbitant pension benefits, ‘free’ health care, excessive paid vacation, sick leave, birthdays off,  etc.  The union bosses collected their dues up front, of course, and the union members took home the promise of gold in the future.  The second lie compounded the problem; those same politicians knowingly under-funded the pension plans to hide the cost of the IOUs from the voters.  Then they fudged the calculations when testing whether the ‘lock-box’ into which they were supposed to be putting the money would earn enough investment returns to cover the promises.  (Ergo the term ‘unfunded pension obligations.’)

Now, the promises have piled up too high, and the calculations can’t be fudged enough to hide the lies that have accumulated over decades of irresponsible (fraudulent?) management of the government fisc.  The fiduciaries of the pension funds – elected and appointed officials – have been caught in their malfeasance.  And, those perpetrators, having moved on to lucrative lobbying jobs or other post-retirement positions, have left the likes of Governor Walker to tell the voters and union members the cold, hard truth.

UH, we’re broke!

And that’s just the bad news.  The worse news is that the same thing is going on with Social Security (and Medicare, unemployment insurance, and Medicaid, too, by the way).  There is not a single lock-box, Al Gore.  Teachers, and the other union pensioners who are exempt from Social Security (yes, that’s correct – they have a separate system) are experiencing exactly what the rest of the US population is going to realize as soon as someone tells the truth.  One wonders, which politician has the guts to do what Governor Walker is doing when, instead of a few thousand protestors, it’s a few million people who are told ‘we can’t keep the promises we made to you.’  How many people will fit on the Mall?  How many gun-toting retirees does the Dome Room hold?

If that truth isn’t told soon, it will end this nation.

It won’t be easy.  Hell, it will be hellish.  Someone has to tell the truth soon.  I know where Americans stand in matters of truth or lies.  Where does you favorite politician stand when it comes to telling the truth?

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Richard D. Cushing, Jeff Neal. Jeff Neal said: Upon reflection, it's not the Unions' fault, is it? […]

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